Complete newbie here.
We have a door in the garage that gets left open on occasion. I’d like to set up a sensor that will alert my phone if it’s open more than 15 minutes even when I’m not at home. I have zero experience with smart home stuff, so I’m looking for advice.
I see 20 different compatible equipment makers in the supported sensors listing. Each seemingly with it’s own hubs and needs. Where is a fellow to start? I’m not looking to do a major installation, just accomplish a simple sensor for a reasonable price.
When I looked at the brand list, none are familiar to me, so I can’t even go with “here’s a name you can trust” factor LOL
Would someone with experience help a guy out and point me at the right brand sensor and associated devices (hub) that I should be looking at for this?
It’s definitely a doable project, but we do need to ask a few questions first.
There are many sensors that can give you an instant alert as soon as a door is opened. It’s the “wait 15 minutes before notifying” part that requires a more sophisticated system. So it’s no longer just about the specific sensor, it’s about the capabilities that the rule creator for the specific system provides. The exact same sensor might be able to trigger with a delay on one system but not another. So you’ll start by looking at the rule creation capabilities of the different home automation systems, then after you’ve selected one, choose from the sensors that work with it.
So we need to first ask two things: what country are you in? And what kind of phone do you have (android, apple, windows, etc)? The options are a little different depending on the answers.
This forum is for people who are using the Samsung SmartThings ™ home automation system, so all of the questions and answers are assumed to be in that context. Fortunately the SmartThings platform does have the notification delay feature built into the rule creator in the SmartThings app regardless of the type of phone you have. So if you choose to go with SmartThings, you will have quite a few sensor options (again, depending on the country you live in). You will probably want to get an Aeotec “works as a SmartThings hub” hub, but again the exact model depends on the country you live in.
You can also create this kind of rule in Apple’s HomeKit if you use an iPhone.
There are several other home automation systems that can also do this kind of rule, but again choices depend on the country you’re in.
Then you will have a choice of many different sensor options, probably at least a dozen different brands.
Zooz is a good reliable moderately priced brand that works well with smartthings. This is the house brand for the retailer The Smartest House, Who also happen to be a sales partner for the SmartThings Aeotec hub. They have very good technical support. And they make a nice simple open/close sensor which typically costs about $28 but it’s often on sale for a few dollars less.
But as I said, there are lots of other sensors that work with smartthings, and any open/close sensor that works with smartthings can do what you’ve described, so I’m sure other people will have other recommendations. Here’s a community thread to start: