Pet Water Fountain Sensor and Notifications

As people have probably started to notice I do a lot for my pets… But that kinda just happens when you have to take care of 3 cats and a dog… Having things automated out helps a lot…

This project is related to an idea that I have had but am still working on. However I needed something for the mean time while I am still prototyping.

It is rather surprising how much water 4 pets can go through and how easy it is to overlook an empty bowl… So we moved up to a water fountain… However that didn’t really help either… I swear that they just kept drinking more… :stuck_out_tongue:

So my solution was to get a water sensor and find a way to incorporate it into their water fountain. While I was working on this I also thought it would be nice if it would turn off the pump if it was empty to keep from destroying it…

I used the water sensor and created a virtual device that showed the current status (Empty or Full - wish I could get more than just that…) of the fountain. Also if it is ‘empty’ for 3 minutes then it send out a notification and turns off the pump. When it is full again it turns the pump back on.

This is my PoC. The fountain that Amazon sent for this project had a crack in it so I am waiting for the replacement… But in the end I want to embed the prongs of the sensor into the plastic spillway in the middle of the bowl allowing only the contacts on it to show on the back side. I will post more pictures as I get it done.

I thought about embedding the sensor into the water container on the back but ran into an issue of the humidity inside the closed container would cause it to always show up as being ‘wet’. Therefore I have to have the contacts somewhere that there is good airflow.

As always the code is on my GitHub at



On the empty/full issue, you can do just like gas tanks do. Set up a reserve tank as the first part of the water flow, and send the notifier when that tank is empty. You can make it as big or as small as you want.

Also, I’m sure you’ve already thought about this, but for anyone taking this on as one of their first maker projects, always remember that you need to be able to get back to the sensor to change the battery later. :sunglasses: :dog:


They way I have it set up as soon as the tank empties and the water level goes down at all thats when it triggers. - At that point theres still about a days worth of water left in the bowl


Well done!! I like how clean it looks!

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Nicely done. only thing left to do is auto refill :smile:


Its on its way :stuck_out_tongue: Just a little more to do.

I am just going to give my disclaimer:

Don’t try this if you feel like it may be past your skill level… If you do you can’t tell your wife that it’s my fault that you broke things. This is all on you!

Okay, So the rest of the parts came in to finish this the way I wanted to. Heres some pictures in order of what needs to happen. Make sure to mark the water line before getting started. Also when you drill the holes make sure its below the water line when its full… and keep measuring again… Don’t be like me :stuck_out_tongue:

Parts needed:

  • Zwave water sensor (aeon labs)
  • Drinkwell pet water fountain
  • Drill
  • 3/32 drill bit
  • Sharpie (Dont use dry erase markers… RIP)
  • Marine Quick Set Epoxy
  • Something to use as a cross brace (take out chopsticks )


Having a problem getting this working. Thought I had it and now it’s failing on me so I am looking for some help from someone using it or better at understanding the code than I am.

Used the provided SmartApp and virtual device code to get those added to the API interface. Both the leviton plug and aeon labs sensor are added and visible in my things. I can control the switch. The moisture sensor reports as wet. Both are added to the SmartApp. The virtual device is selected as well in the smartapp. But no matter what state the moisture sensor is in, the SmartApp reports Empty and shuts the fountain off.

Do I need to use a different device type for the moisture sensor? Currently using generic zwave moisture sensor.

Any help is appreciated.


Do you still have the Code for this ?

I need a z-wave sensor for my cats water tank.
I want ta notice (Push) when it`s empty

I made one basically following your lead. It is awesome!