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Motion Sensor Light Switches: All Your Options Right Now

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The Best Motion Sensor Light Switch For You May Not Be Smart!

Traditional motion sensor light switches brought true innovation to homes across the US – saving consumers money with home lighting controlled by clever little occupancy sensors. So when you’re in the room, the lights power on, and when you leave they turn off. Doesn’t get much easier than that.

Now adding smart technology to the mix means unparalleled levels of control of your home lighting setup, with some models even offering Alexa voice control built in.

But not everyone needs their motion sensor switch to be smart, so make sure to check out all the models in this guide before pulling the trigger.

And if time is short and smart is what you need, here’s three of the best motion sensor lights switches you can invest in right now:

Links & Images from Amazon Product Advertising API. iDISRUPTED May Get A Commission. Last updated on 2019-11-19 at 13:29

Things to Consider before Buying

The following are the factors you should consider before buying, so lets jump straight in….

Price

Good news! These devices are not necessarily expensive, so you should get your money’s worth by saving on your energy bills. These switches are available in a variety of price ranges but if you do invest in something that is towards the expensive side, be sure to check if the extra features it offers are worth it.

Adjustability

If the motion sensor switch is adjustable, that makes your experience more satisfactory. After all, every time you enter a room does not mean the light needs to come on. It should have an ambient light setting so that if the sensor detects enough ambient light in the room, it will not feel the need to turn on the light. 

Motion Sensor Light Switch (2 Pack), Eoce Smart Switch with Motion Sensor, 10A Motion Light Switch, 3 Settings Modes, WiFi enabled, Remote Control and Timer, Compatible with Alexa and Google Home

It should also not turn off the light if you are still in the room but making minimal movement. For example, if you are at your desk reading and not making too much movement, the sensor should not think the room is vacant and turns off the light. You should be able to adjust the sensitivity of the sensor.

Type of Sensor

Motion sensor switches are typically of two kinds — active or passive. An active sensor will send out sound waves into the room and wait for them to return. When a person enters the room, the speed of the sound waves upon return changes and the switch is automatically triggered. 

In the case of a passive sensor, the switch uses a passive infrared sensor to detect movement in the room based on heat. The type of sensor will shape the kind of experience you have with a motion sensor light switch.

For more details and frequently asked questions, we’ve included them at the bottom of the page.

So without further interruption, it’s time to check out all the best options to buy right now.

Best Motion Sensor Switches with Smart Capability

The following are some of the best motion sensor switches with smart capability:

Ecobee Switch+ with Built-In Motion Detection

The Ecobee Switch+ comes with Alexa built-in, alongside motion detection and ambient lighting sensors, so you can have complete control over your home lighting system.

It can be installed in as little as 45 minutes, thanks to an in-app video that will guide you step by step, wire by wire.

You can also use the Ecobee app which allows you to use your mobile device to control the switch for times when you want the convenience of remote operation.

ecobee Switch+ Smart Light Switch, Amazon Alexa Built-in

Features

  • This device has ambient lighting sensors and built-in motion detection so it can begin its work almost as soon as you install it.
  • It also has built-in Alexa, which means you can use voice control to turn the lights on or off
  • When paired with the Ecobee Thermostat, it can also be used as a room sensor as it also offers built-in occupancy and temperature sensors.
  • By installing an app on your phone you can use your phone as a remote and control the lights from the comfort of your couch.
  • The device can be configured to work as a night light when it gets dark so you never have to sleep in the pitch black.

Pros

  • The light can be configured to stay off in case you wake up in the middle of the night to drink water or use the washroom.
  • The vacation mode can make it look like you are at home even when you are not, for enhanced security.
  • Any outdoor light can be upgraded to turn on after sunset, giving you an automatic porch light.
  • The whole system can be set up within 45 minutes, thanks to the detailed, step by step guide on the app.

Cons

  • Some customers complained that it can be slow to react at times.
  • Other customers complained that the Alexa experience could be smoother.
ecobee Switch+ Smart Light Switch, Amazon Alexa Built-in
204 Reviews
ecobee Switch+ Smart Light Switch, Amazon Alexa Built-in
  • BEYOND SMART LIGHTING: With built-in motion detection, ambient light sensors, and built-in Alexa you can control your home’s lighting like never before.
  • EASILY INSTALL YOURSELF: It only takes about 45 minutes, thanks to an in-app step-by-step walkthrough and handy videos. Everything you need comes in the box—no need for an electrician.

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Verdict

The Ecobee Switch+ is a good investment that is sure to help you save on money and electricity. It can sense movement and when the lights need to be on. You can also program the lights to be turned off despite movement, for example, if you just get out of bed at night for a glass of water.

GE Enbrighten Z-Wave Motion Sensor Switch

The GE Enbrighten Z-Wave Motion Sensor Switch is compatible with a variety of Z-Wave certified hubs, like SmartThings, Wink, ADT Pulse, Nexia, etc. You can also integrate the device with Alexa, as long as the hub you are using also supports Alexa (only ZigBee products can be connected directly to Echo Plus). Apart from its motion sensor capabilities, it also allows you to trigger scenes wirelessly and also send alerts. The following are some of the features the product has to offer:

GE, White & Light Almond, Enbrighten Z-Wave Plus Smart Motion Light Switch, Works with Alexa, Google Assistant, SmartThings, Wink, Zwave Hub Required, Repeater/Range Extender, 3-Way Compatible, 26931

Features

  • This switch can be connected to a few different Z-Wave certified hubs, including SmartThings, Wink, ADT Pulse, Vivint, Nexia, etc.
  • You can also integrate it with Alexa and use it for voice command, as long as the hub you are using is also compatible with Alexa and other Echo products. 
  • You can wirelessly trigger scenes and also send alerts to your registered mobile when a motion detection turns the light on.
  • With a Z-Wave gateway or controller, you can remotely monitor your lighting system using any mobile device
  • There are multiple operation modes that you can use the switch on — auto-ON/auto-OFF, Vacancy — manual ON/auto-OFF, Manual — manual ON/OFF.

Pros

  • The switch has three sensitivity modes — low, medium and high — so you can decide how quickly you want the switch to respond. 
  • It comes with white and light almond paddles which allow you to fit the switch into any home decor.
  • The sensor is able to cover a 180-degree range of up to 45 feet, ensuring it is effective in small or large rooms.
  • It is one of the best light fittings to install if you are looking to automate your home.

Cons

  • It can only be installed with a neutral wire.
  • A few customers complained that the switch failed after a few years.
GE, White & Light Almond, Enbrighten Z-Wave Plus Smart Motion Light Switch, Works with Alexa, Google Assistant, SmartThings, Wink, Zwave Hub Required, Repeater/Range Extender, 3-Way Compatible, 26931
480 Reviews
GE, White & Light Almond, Enbrighten Z-Wave Plus Smart Motion Light Switch, Works with Alexa, Google Assistant, SmartThings, Wink, Zwave Hub Required, Repeater/Range Extender, 3-Way Compatible, 26931
  • VOICE CONTROL – ALEXA & GOOGLE ASSISTANT COMPATIBLE (requires a Z-Wave certified hub). Works with the following Z-Wave certified hubs: SmartThings, Ring Alarm, Wink, ADT Pulse, ADT Command, Trane,...
  • SELECTABLE MOTION CONTROL – Personalize the switch with three motion-detection options – occupancy, vacancy and manual. Occupancy mode turns lights ON/OFF automatically, while lights are turned on...

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Verdict

This is a great switch to install in your home if you want to convert your home into a smart one. You get plenty of options to pick from in terms of Z-Wave certified hubs. Apart from its motion sensor capabilities, you can also wirelessly trigger a variety of scenes. 

Eoce Smart Light Switch with Motion Sensor

Eoce Smart Light Switch with Motion Sensor can work with a voice command as it is compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Home. The Smart Life app allows you to access the switch from anywhere, using only your smartphone. You can set timings for when you want the lights to come on or off every day. The automatic mode allows the switch to activate the motion sensor. It can be used anywhere, be it your kitchen, your closet, the living room, bedroom, office, etc. The following are the features the product has to offer:

Eoce Smart Light Switch, Smart Switch with Motion Sensor, 10A Wifi Motion Light Switch, Compatible with Alexa, Google Home and IFTTT, Remote Control, Timer, Easy and Safe-install, FCC Listed

Features

  • The Eoce Light Switch can be connected to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, using Alexa Skill.
  • The Smart Life app allows you to use your mobile device as a remote control.
  • You can set the timing of when you would like the lights to come on or off. Device sharing also allows you to share the sensor light switch with other members of your family.
  • The auto mode (Auto ON/Auto-OFF) works as a motion sensor, while the OFF and LED modes allow you to override the motion sensor and use it as a standard smart switch.
  • It has a 180-degree and a 3-5 meter detection range for the motion sensor.

Pros

  • With this switch, you get a smart light switch as well as a motion sensor switch.
  • The slide switch in front of the unit allows you to change modes with ease.
  • It has a random delay time of only 30 seconds.
  • It does not require a hub and can be used with your smart home systems, no strings attached.
  • The LED mode allows you to see the light even in the dark instead of floundering at night.

Cons

  • There are several different ways of controlling the switch so it may even get overwhelming or confusing.

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Verdict

This is a decent device for you to invest in to make your home smarter. You get the best of both worlds and can pick between using the switch as a standard smart switch or a motion sensitive switch. There are not too many reviews to go by for this product, however, from what can be seen on paper, this is a very promising product.

Best Motion Sensor Switches without the Smarts

The following are the best motion sensor switches without the smarts:

Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Light Switch

The Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Light Switch is one that is able to automatically turn the lights on when you enter and turn them off when you leave. It also features XCT sensing technology which is able to discern fine motion so that the lights do not turn off if there is no active movement in the room. This is especially helpful when you are typing or reading. The switch is great for installing in a small room, like a kitchen, a closet or even a laundry room. The following are some of the features the product has to offer:

Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Switch, No Neutral Required, 250 Watts, Single-Pole, MS-OPS2-WH, White

Features

  • The motion sensor switch automatically turns on the lights when you enter the room and turns them off when you exit.
  • The XCT sensing technology is able to sense even minimal movement, like if you are reading or typing at your desk, which means the light will not be turned off. 
  • You can also configure the settings such that the lights do not come on if there is enough natural light in the room.
  • You can program the lights to time out in 1, 5, 15 or 30 minutes.
  • The switch works with all types of bulbs provided they are up to 250 watts and incandescent, halogen, have electronic low voltage, etc.

Pros

  • It can be installed in 15 minutes and requires only a ground wire and no neutral wire.
  • The technology is sensitive enough to even detect if you are sitting in the room and the only movement you have made is the turning of a page.
  • If you like, you can turn on the settings where the lights will not come if the switch senses there is enough natural light in the room.
  • It is compatible with all bulbs.

Cons

  • Several customers complained that they were dissatisfied with the switch and then also with the return policy.
  • Some customers reported that quality is unstable.
On Sale Now!
Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Switch, No Neutral Required, 250 Watts, Single-Pole, MS-OPS2-WH, White
1,980 Reviews
Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Switch, No Neutral Required, 250 Watts, Single-Pole, MS-OPS2-WH, White
  • Automatically turns the lights on when you enter the room and off when you leave
  • Features XCT sensing technology which detects fine motion, such as typing at a desk or reading, ensuring lights do not turn off inadvertently

Links & Images from Amazon Product Advertising API. iDISRUPTED May Get A Commission. Last updated on 2019-11-19 at 13:39

Verdict

This is a convenient and easy-to-use switch. It is not frustrating as the light does not go off, even if there is minimal movement in the room. So if you are sitting quietly and reading or typing at your desk, the switch will sense it and keep the lights on. 

Leviton Decora Motion Sensor Light Switch

The Leviton Decora Motion Sensor Light Switch comes on automatically when you enter the room and goes off when you exit. It provides a 180-degree field of view and coverage of 900 sq. ft. All models also have screw terminals that make it extremely easy to install and it does not require a neutral wire. The following are the features the product has to offer:

Leviton IPS02-1LW Decora Motion Sensor In-Wall Switch, Auto-On, 2.5A, Single Pole, White, 3-Pack

Features

  • The switch comes on automatically when you enter the room and goes off when you exit, therefore, saving energy.
  • It has a 180-degree field of view and provides you with 900 sq. ft. of coverage. 
  • It has a segmented lens that ensures the switch has optimum sensitivity so it can detect even your slightest movement and does not go off if you are just sitting still in a room.
  • The model comes with screw terminals that make installation a breeze.

Pros

  • Ease of installation as it comes with screw terminals and does not require a neutral wire.
  • It picks up even the slightest motion when you are in the room so if you are reading a book, quiet as a mouse, it will still keep the lights on.
  • This is an ideal switch for LED bulbs.

Cons

  • The ambient lighting sensor does not work as well as other brands
  • The performance was unreliable for a few customers.

Verdict

The Leviton Decora is convenient to use and offers great motion sensitivity. Several customers complained that the ambient light setting did not work so the lights came on even when there is enough natural light in the room. It is ideal for a room that is small and does not get too much light otherwise.

On Sale Now!
Leviton IPS02-1LW Decora Motion Sensor In-Wall Switch, Auto-On, 2.5A, Single Pole, White, 3-Pack
351 Reviews
Leviton IPS02-1LW Decora Motion Sensor In-Wall Switch, Auto-On, 2.5A, Single Pole, White, 3-Pack
  • Automatic on/automatic off provides 180-degree field of view and 900 square feet of coverage
  • Automatic-ON/Automatic OFF operation for seamless energy management

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TOPGREENER TSOS5-W In-Wall PIR Motion Sensor Light Switch

The TOPGREENER TSOS5-W in-wall PIR switch is able to detect motion whenever you enter the room or leave it. It uses a passive infrared sensor (PIR) that is able to minimize false triggers from any unwanted movements. You can customize the sensor based on your needs by switching between the occupancy and vacancy mode. It has a variable time delay from 15 seconds to 30 minutes and provides an adjustable range. The following are some of the features the product has to offer:

TOPGREENER Occupancy Vacancy PIR Motion Sensor with 0-10V Dimmer Light Switch, 800W Electronic Ballast or LED Driver, Single Pole Low-Voltage Dimmer, TDODS5-010, White

Features

  • The motion sensor switch employs a PIR sensor which minimizes false triggers.
  • By switching between the Occupancy switch mode (Auto-ON, Auto-OFF) and the Vacancy switch mode (Manual ON, Auto-OFF), you can adjust the settings.
  • The sensor has adjustable settings and has a variable time delay from 15 seconds to 30 minutes.
  • It has a coverage of 314 sq. ft. and a 180-degree view. 
  • It works with all bulb types.

Pros

  • It comes included with a wall plate.
  • The PIR sensor makes it an extremely intelligent product.
  • The adjustable settings allow you to customize the switch based on your needs.

Cons

  • Some users complained that the lights started to flicker after a few uses.
  • The product can be challenging to install and wire up correctly.
On Sale Now!
TOPGREENER Occupancy Vacancy PIR Motion Sensor with 0-10V Dimmer Light Switch, 800W Electronic Ballast or LED Driver, Single Pole Low-Voltage Dimmer, TDODS5-010, White
583 Reviews
TOPGREENER Occupancy Vacancy PIR Motion Sensor with 0-10V Dimmer Light Switch, 800W Electronic Ballast or LED Driver, Single Pole Low-Voltage Dimmer, TDODS5-010, White
  • Motion sensor switch with low voltage 0-10 dimming, designed to control electronic ballasts or dimmable LED drivers, it allows you to dim the brightness levels of low voltage lighting
  • Motion detection: Passive infrared (PIR) sensor reduces false triggers from unwanted movements and turns lights on when motion is detected. Lights will automatically turn off when the selected time...

Links & Images from Amazon Product Advertising API. iDISRUPTED May Get A Commission. Last updated on 2019-11-19 at 13:39

Verdict

The device uses a PIR sensor which enhances its performance and makes it a lot more reliable. You can cut down on false triggers from unnecessary movements and this seems to be a very efficient sensor. The learning curve may be slightly steep, but other than that, it is a great buy.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following are some of the frequently asked questions:

What Is a PIR Switch?

A PIR switch uses a Passive Infrared sensor with the ability to discern between movements to reduce false triggers that could power on your lights.

What Is the Difference between PIR and Motion Sensors? 

In the case of PIR, the motion is detected by means of a passive infrared sensor. It detects infrared energy being emitted in terms of heat, which means it can tell the difference between a curtain moving from the breeze of an open window and when you or a member of your family walks into the room.

With motion detection, movement is triggered based on a certain level of pixel change. This level depends on the settings on the sensor controls. The lower the sensitivity, the higher the percentage of pixel change required for an event to power on your lights.

Do LED Bulbs Work with Motion Sensors? 

Absolutely! LED bulbs are some of the best types of bulbs to use with a motion sensor.

How Does a Motion Sensor Light Switch Work? 

Typically, a motion sensor light switch is based on the principle of changing sound waves in the room. The sensor sends out sound waves into the room and waits for them to return, much like a sonar on a ship. When someone enters the room, the speed of the sound wave changes upon return and power up the motion light sensor. 

How Long Do Motion Sensor Light Switches Stay On?

This depends on the brand and the settings you choose. From when motion is detected, you can set the time-out limit from one minute and up to 30 minutes to cut power to the light level.

What Can Trigger a Motion Sensor Light? 

Motion sensors can be triggered by undesirable ‘false trigger’ movements, like the leaves moving outside the window playing with the natural light in the room and the light level of the things around it. To reduce false triggers, you can decrease the sensitivity controls of the sensor or alternatively invest in a PIR switch which uses infrared sensor technology to detect heat signatures in the room to reduce false triggers.

How Much Do Motion Sensor Lights Save? 

Motion sensor lights can save you a lot of money and energy in the long run as you will no longer leave lights on accidentally. YMMV, but the device will detect and automatically turn off the lights when you are away from the room, alongside using the ambient light level controls (if you choose a model with this functionality) to power off any led light bulbs attached to the switch circuit during the daytime.

How Far Do Motion Sensor Light Switches Work?

The distance motion sensors work at is different for each brand, but all generally work in a 180-degree detection range. 

Final Thoughts

With motion sensor switches, smart or otherwise, you can make your home a lot more efficient, saving money by reducing power consumption alongside strengthening your home security – a welcome bonus!

Motion sensors for lights can make your life considerably easier and more rewarding, especially if you fine-tune the triggering of the technology by adjusting the sensitivity controls to create a truly personalized experience and get maximum value from having motion sensor light switches in your home.

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