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With increasing advancements in smart home tech, many consumer products, including home security systems, are getting simpler to set up and use. Installing a driveway alarm has become quite an easy task for the average DIYer!

Best Driveway Alarms
9.7 Guardline ¼ Mile Long Range Wireless Driveway Alarm Outdoor Weather Resistant Motion Sensor & Detector- Best DIY Security Alert System- Monitor & Protect Outside Property, Yard, Garage, Gate, Pool
TOP PICKA quarter mile range driveway alarm
9.5 Mighty Mule Wireless Driveway Alarm (FM231)
TOP MAGNETIC PICKA solar powered driveway sensor
9.3 1/2 Mile Long Range Solar Wireless Driveway Alarm Outdoor Weather Resistant Motion Sensor & Detector-Security Alert System-Monitor & Protect Outside Property,No Need to Replace Battery
TOP SOLARA cost-effective driveway motion sensor
9.2 Bunker Hill Wireless Security Driveway Alert System
BUDGET PICKA cheap driveway security system
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9.7
TOP PICK
A quarter mile range driveway alarm

Built with up to 4 sensors per zone, the Guardline ¼ Mile Long Range driveway alarm delivers superior sensitivity and highly reactive detection.

Top Features
  • 4 sensors per zone.
  • 40-foot detection range.
  • Weather-resistant elements.

Thanks to its straightforward and intuitive design, the Guardline driveway alert is extremely easy to install and to use. In fact, its plug-and-play design will have it ready for use within a few minutes.  The outdoor motion alert sensor also comes with up to 16 sensors that you can place around your property to give you a full suite security system.

After installation and activation, anyone or anything that comes within 40 feet of your property will be detected. A signal will then be sent to the centralized receiver. The Guardline driveway alert will notify you if a person, animal or even a vehicle approaches your property.

The signal receptor of the Guardline driveway alarm is designed to mimic that of your home doorbell chime.  Its pre-tested design gives the receptor superior performance by eliminating interference from obstacles such as thick walls or trees. Passive infrared technology helps the sensor pick up motion and heat whilst bypassing false alarms such as dead leaves.

Tech Specs

Sensor range40 ft.
Receiver range1,320 ft./ ¼ mile
Sensor quantity16
Multisensor supportYes
What we liked
  • Comes with up to 30 customizable alert sounds.
  • You can pair up a specific tone for each sensor.
  • Up to 4 sensors per zone make it a total of 16 sensors per alarm.
What we didn't like
  • The alarm’s range is less than some competitors'
  • Some users have complained of false alarms.
9.5
TOP MAGNETIC PICK
A solar powered driveway sensor

The solar powered Mighty Mule driveway alert system is built to effectively monitor who enters your driveway, no matter the size or design of your driveway.

Top Features
  • Electromagnetic sensor design.
  • Receiver & transmitter low battery indicator.
  • Mass metal motion detector.

The Mighty Mule offers an articulate security system that alerts you every time a vehicle crosses your driveway. Built with a powerful and highly sensitive outdoor electromagnetic sensor, the alarm system is not prone to false alarms.

With this design, unfortunately the alarm doesn’t detect animals or children. The sensor comes in the form of a wand which you can easily bury under your driveway. The wand sensor is specially designed to detect mass moving metal within a 3 to 12 feet radius of its location.

Range

When the sensor picks up motion, a signal is sent to your transmitter in the form of a pleasant tune at up to 400 feet away from the wand’s location. The range of the alarm system can be increased by adding addition sensors that can be purchased separately. Thanks to the versatile design, the Mighty Mule can cater to increasing security needs for businesses and private homes as well.

Moreover, you can program the added sensors to open your gate and allow a guest to drive in without needing a remote control.

Tech Specs

Sensor range12 ft.
Receiver range400 ft.
Sensor quantity1
1Multisensor supportYes, 16
What we liked
  • The alarm system features weatherproof construction.
  • Low battery indicator on both the indoor receiver and outdoor sensor.
  • It is very easy and quick to install.
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained that the receiver alert tone volume is too low.

Constructed from durable elements, the Dakota Alert DCMA-4000 series driveway sensors can work under extreme conditions with a temperature range of -30 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

Top Features
  • Up to 12 customizable receiver tunes.
  • -30 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit temperature rating.
  • 16 driveway sensor compatibility.

The Dakota Alert DCMA-4000 series is built to deliver optimal performance. With sensor coverage of up to 50 feet and base unit signal pick up of up to a mile, the driveway alarm is ideal for both small and large properties.

Whilst the alarm system only comes with a single sensor, you can invest in up to 16 extra sensors to adequately cover your entire property. Its sensor design on the other hand is quite unique, incorporating a rubber hose that you can discreetly lay across your driveway.

The sensor then effortlessly sends signals every time a vehicle drives across it or when a human or animal walks past it. Moreover, the alarm system's waterproof and extreme temperature resistance helps significantly boost the sensor’s durability. The customizable base receiver unit allows you to choose up to 12 different alert tones for your sensors. All of that translates into a versatile, highly customizable wireless alarm system.

Tech Specs

Sensor range50 ft.
Receiver range5,280 ft./1 mile
Sensor quantity1
Multisensor supportYes, 16
What we liked
  • Weather-resistant build.
  • You can add up to 16 extra transmitters to cover a large area.
  • The alarm automatically detects moving vehicles.
What we didn't like
  • You will have to spend extra to add more sensors.
9.3
TOP SOLAR
A cost-effective driveway motion sensor

The eMacros driveway motion sensor detector brings with it cost-effective operation thanks to its durable, fully solar-powered construction.

Top Features
  • Adjustable sensitivity control.
  • Low battery indicator.
  • Expandable construction.

You don’t require batteries to operate the eMacros driveway alarm system, since it is built with a solar-powered mechanism. The motion sensor features a built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery you can charge using a solar panel. The panel can be powered by a DC 5V power adapter.

When it comes to installation, the process takes only minutes. You can also add up to 4 sensors to improve coverage if you have a large home. This alert system is designed to not only detect vehicles, but humans and large animals as well.

To make it easier to detect the sensors to which a signal originates from, the receiver unit is equipped with 4 unique sounds to choose from. Covering a radius of 30 feet, the outdoor sensors are capable of sending over signals to a base receiver that is over 2000 feet away. Plus, the alarm system's reinforced design allows the signals to easily transfer through obstacles such as trees or extreme weather.

Tech Specs

Sensor range30 ft.
Receiver range2,640 ft./ ½ mile
Sensor quantity1
Multisensor supportYes, 4
What we liked
  • It doesn’t require batteries.
  • You can simultaneously use up to 4 sensors.
  • You can adjust the alert sounds.
What we didn't like
  • Its sensitivity setting is long.
  • It doesn’t offer a wide variety of alert sounds.
  • The audible sounds can be quite loud.

Other Driveway Alarms

If you are on a budget and looking for a full suite outdoor security system, the Bunker Hill Security system is an excellent choice.

Top Features
  • 400 ft. signal range.
  • Infrared sensor detectors.
  • Battery-operated.

The Bunker Hill System driveway alert system comes with limited features, however, it guarantees adequate security for the grounds of your home. This budget-friendly and low-end security system covers a long signal range of up to 400 feet.

Although it comes with the necessities for installation including mounting hardware, it is easier to install if you are an experienced DIYer. However, after installation, everything else is a breeze. The outdoor infrared sensor is also very articulate with motion detection. Nonetheless, you may unfortunately experience some false alarms from time to time with this system.

While the Bunker Hill alert system isn't equipped with any sensitivity adjustment, its sound alerts are quite loud. Additionally, its strong signal range delivers messages easily even through obstacles such as thick walls or trees. However, during bad weather, it may be difficult for the system to deliver alerts to you.

Tech Specs

Sensor range30 ft.
Receiver range400 ft.
Sensor quantity1
Multisensor supportNo
What we liked
  • Easy to use thanks to its intuitive design.
  • Up to 400 feet of signal coverage range.
  • Very affordable option.
What we didn't like
  • You have to spend extra on replacement batteries.
  • Some users have complained about false alarms.
9.6
RUNNER-UP
An expandable perimeter system

The Chamberlain Group CWA20 wireless motion alert features a base monitor that communicates with the durable outdoor driveway sensors with an adjustable control to suit your property needs.

Top Features
  • Adjustable sensitivity control.
  • Unique base unit sound and light pattern.
  • Passive infrared sensor technology.

Whether it’s your home or a commercial space, the Chamberlain Group CWA2000 driveway motion sensor alert is the perfect choice. The unit comes with a single sensor, base receiver, mounting hardware, and non-slip feet.

However, if you want to expand your perimeter, you can add up to 7 extra sensors.  The installation process is quite easy and straightforward with no wiring required for the assembly. With the base, you can choose to use either the included AC adapter or AA batteries.

Motion Detection

When mounted, the motion alert boasts a viewing angle of 120 degrees. Incorporating a passive infrared sensor technology (PIR), the driveway alert can detect motion at up to 30 feet away. When you reinforce this weatherproof system with additional separately sold CWPIR sensors, you can even adjust the sensitivity.

Its base receiver on the other hand is designed to detect signals from up to half a mile away. To reduce confusion, the security system even lets you set unique sound and light patterns on the base receiver so you can easily identify which sensor it is.

Tech Specs

Sensor range30 ft.
Receiver range2,640 ft./ ½ mile
Sensor quantity1
Multisensor supportYes, up to 7
What we liked
  • Supports up to 7 extra sensors that cover a radius of up to 30 feet.
  • Built with adjustable sensitivity control.
  • Easy to install with no wiring needed.
What we didn't like
  • It is prone to false alarms during extreme weather such as high winds.
  • The design is not fully waterproof.

The Rodann Electronics driveway alarm system allows you to add as many transmitters as possible for optimal protection for your home.

Top Features
  • Expandable design.
  • Up to 500 feet signal range.
  • 70db volume control.

The Rodann Electronics wireless driveway alarm system is designed to effectively work with a long signal range of up to 500 feet. The alarm will consistently work even in extreme weather, such as heavy rains or high heat.

Nonetheless, if your home is positioned in a heavily wooded area or behind thick walls, you may experience some trouble with signal reception. Fitted with a lithium-ion battery, the alert system sensors work uninterrupted for up to 6 months. The expandable design on the other hand allows you to add as many extra sensors or receivers as you need to fully cover your home.

The alert system is also fitted with adjustable volume control that can deliver signal alerts at a sound interval of up to 70dB. If your property is in a noisy area, the system’s speaker output terminal allows you to add external or loud speakers to help the signal sounds counter the racket.

Sensor range40 ft.
Receiver range500 ft
Sensor quantity16
Multisensor supportYes
What we liked
  • LCD counter keeps track of traffic count.
  • Weatherproof build allows for consistent performance during rain, snow, high heat or high winds.
  • Live customer chat support.
What we didn't like
  • Motion sensors may deliver false alarms.
  • More reliable in detecting people.

The 1byOne driveway motion sensor is built with 3 different sound alert modes to cater to individual needs.

Top Features
  • PIR technology.
  • Three sound alert modes.
  • 36 alert ringtones.

The 1by One motion sensor is designed for a variety of uses. You can use the alert system as a driveway sensor to gauge who enters your property or even as a pool sensor for your kids when they get too close to it.

The sensor system is designed with a wide signal range of up to 1000 feet. Although it comes with a single sensor, you can extend its coverage by adding up to 5 sensors. Each 1by One sensor boasts a detection radius of between 16 and 26 feet. With up to 36 ringtones, you have access to a vast range of alert tones to choose from for each of your sensors so that you can prevent confusion. 

The motion sensor also comes with 3 sound mode choices.  You can choose to set the alert to be a sound and LED flashing mode, a sound mode, or simply an LED flashing mode. You can also set the sound on low, medium, or high with an interval between 25db and 80dB.

Tech Specs

Sensor range26 ft.
Receiver range1,000 ft
Sensor quantity1
Multisensor supportYes, 5
What we liked
  • Features a user-friendly design.
  • You can control the alert sound volume.
  • Its design allows for multi-purpose use
What we didn't like
  • Its signal range is affected by obstacles.
  • Some users have complained about false alarms.

The HTZsafe solar-powered driveway alert system is built with optimal expandability allowing you to add up to 36 extra sensors.

Top Features
  • Fully expandable system.
  • -22 to 158 degrees temperature rating.
  • Solar powered design.

Incorporating a built-in lithium battery and a solar panel, the HTZsafe driveway alarm system is fully solar-powered so you don't have to spend extra on replacement batteries. With a ¼ mile signal range and a sensor detection range of up to 50 feet, the motion sensor is quite a reasonable investment, even for a large home.

Although it only comes with a single receiver and sensor, you can pair it with up to 32 sensors to cater to larger properties. Additionally, depending on the size of your home, you can also adjust the sensitivity. You can opt to set it on low at 25 feet, medium at 30 feet, and high at 50 feet.

It also features an infrared detection chip and precision detection angle to help reduce false alarms. Its fully enclosed IP66 waterproof rated body allows it to continue performing consistently even in extreme climates with a temperature range of -22 to 158 degrees Fahrenheit.

Tech Specs

Sensor range50 ft.
Receiver range1,320 ft./ ¼ mile
Sensor quantity1
Multisensor supportYes,32
What we liked
  • Built-in solar panel and battery.
  • Dependable waterproof design.
  • Survives extreme climate conditions.
What we didn't like
  • Some users have complained about the quality of the user manual.

Top Features
  • 36 alert melodies.
  • Sound and LED flash alert mode.
  • 200 feet signal range.

With the Swann Communications motion detector, PIR alert sensors can easily detect motion with a radius range of up to 40 feet. You can adjust the position of the sensors using the included rotating mounting brackets, even after the installation is already done. Its receiver on the other hand is designed to emit both audible alarm sounds and LED flashing lights.

Top Features
  • Adjustable sensitivity control.
  • Expandable with unlimited sensors and unlimited receivers.
  • Easy DIY installation.

The Hosmart driveway alert system allows you to set the sensitivity according to your property needs. The alert system features built-in adjustable sensitivity control, allowing you to set it at low, medium, or high. The sensitivity ranges from 15 to 25 feet. Its expandable design on the other hand allows you to add unlimited sensors and receivers.

Top Features
  • 400 feet signal range.
  • Battery-operated.
  • Water-resistant plastic housing.

With the Jobar International driveway alarm system, the installation process is simplified as you are not required to use any wiring. Thanks to its weather-resistant plastic housing and compact body profile, you can mount the alarm system anywhere, be it on your mailbox, garage, or driveway gate.

Driveway Alarm Features to Consider

Installation

Installing a driveway alarm is a fairly easy task. You don’t need to pay a repair guy to do the job for you as it can be an easy DIY task. Most driveway alarms come with their own mounting hardware and screws, so they are easy to set up. The only tool you may need, in most cases, is a matching screwdriver.  

While their sensors are positioned in the outdoors, the main receiver stays indoors where you will receive the motion signals. 

You will, however, come across some special designs such as the Mighty Mule, which allows you to bury the sensors underground for added discreteness. This may require the services of a tradesman.

Sensor Accuracy – Preventing False Alarms & Sensitivity

To reduce false alarms, driveway alarms are built with special sensor designs. Some of the common designs used include infrared beams, magnetic probes, rubber hoses, or photo beams. Infrared beams sense movement with heat whilst magnetic probes sense metal, which makes them less prone to false alarms. 

Rubber hose sensors sense motion as they are laid on your driveway and detect vehicles that pass by. However, this design is more expensive. Photo beams on the other hand use light, thus, when blocked you will receive a signal. Consequently, alarm systems designed with photo beam technology may not be as reliable as the other options.

Range

For driveway alarms, range comes in two forms; sensor detection range and receiver signal range. The best driveway alarms have varying ranges. Typically, the radius range for sensors ranges anywhere from 10 to 50 feet. The signal range for the receiver on the other hand ranges from a quarter mile to a mile. 

You can also expand the range of your sensors and receivers by adding extra ones.  So, before you invest in an alarm system, check to find out how many sensors or receivers it can support. Some support up to 4 pieces while others go as high as 30.

Weatherproof

The best driveway alarm systems should be weatherproof. Remember, the sensors are placed on the exterior of your home so that they can detect any intrusion.

Thus, a weatherproof sensor casing, made from plastic or reinforced metal, helps to protect them even during extreme weather. You want your alarm system to consistently work, even under heavy rain or high winds.

Expansion – Additional Sensors

As previously mentioned, you can add extra, separately bought sensors to your alarm system to expand its coverage. Thus, when you are choosing the best driveway alarm for your system, always check if it boasts multisensory compatibility. Also, find out how many extra sensors you can add to ensure it covers the needs of your property.

Driveway Alert / Notification Types

Like we discussed, driveway alerts also have four key sensor designs.  These include infrared beams, magnetic probes, rubber hoses, or photo beams. The infrared beam is what is commonly known as passive infrared technology. It is fitted with beam chips that detect heat radiated by animals, humans, or vehicles.

This type of build can sometimes relay false alarms. For example, when heat from small animals such as cats is detected. A photo beam on the other hand is what is known as active infrared technology. It picks up motion when an object blocks its light beam.

Power Options

The best driveway alarms feature two power options. These are solar operated or battery-powered alarms. With a solar-powered alarm, you don’t have to worry about purchasing replacement batteries. You can simply recharge the batteries they come with using the included solar panel.  

The downside to these alarms is that they are dependent on the sun, which may be a problem during the colder season. However, they can also be powered by a 5 V power source. Battery-operated ones use replaceable batteries, which you can discard once depleted.

Smart Home Integration

As a smart home website, we like to integrate and control devices via a single smart hub. 

Below is a recipe on how to integrate a driveway alarm with a smart hub.

See the how-to video below:

How-to steps

  1. You will need a driveway alarm kit and a smart hub door/window sensor.

  2. Set up the driveway alarm sensors outside where you want them to pick up signals.

  3. Install the receiver unit inside your home.

  4. Set up the door/window sensor.

  5. Open the receiver to expose the contacts and the sensors to expose the terminals for the external input.

  6. Tie 22 AWG wires (separately sold) to tie the two terminal blocks in with the sensors.

  7. Also, tie the wires in the receiver contacts.

  8. After the connection, the system will be able to detect motion, send signals to the receiver, which will then send waves to the smart hub door sensor to initiate whatever smart home settings you have.

Common Questions About Driveway Alarms

How does a driveway alarm work?

Driveway alarms work by detecting motion from humans, animals or vehicles, using their sensors (can be dependent on heat, light, metal, or movement).
 
The sensors then send the signals to the indoor main receiver which emits the signals through sound, light, or sound/light alerts.

How to install a driveway alarm?

While individual alarms have their own installation design, they all follow a standard mechanism.
 
To install the system, connect the sensor to their transmitter, and mount them on their mounting hardware, positioning them around the area you want them to cover. Then, mount the receiver where you want it to go indoors.

What is the range of a driveway alarm?

The range of your driveway alarm is the distance to which signals from the sensors can travel to the receiver. You can also refer to the sensor radius coverage as the range.
 
Typically, driveway alarms boast signal ranges between a quarter mile to a mile. Sensors, on the other hand cover a radius range between 10 to 50 feet.

Can a driveway sensor detect people?

It depends on the type of sensor used. For example, passive and active infrared technology sensors can detect people because they use heat or light beams.
 
A magnetic probe on the other hand detects metals. Thus, they are ideal for detecting vehicles, but not people.

What is the difference between a magnetic and motion driveway sensor?

The main difference between magnetic and motion driveway sensors is how they detect. Magnetic driveway sensors are designed to detect mass metals such as vehicles.
 
Motion driveway sensors on the other hand detect motion using heat, light beams (when the beams are blocked by an object), or movement (rubber hose sensors).

The Verdict

Driveway alarms are a cost-effective way to keep your home safe. After all, you don’t have to spend extra on installation, yet, they provide a substantial layer of security around your property. Our top pick for best available driveway alarm is Guardline ¼ Mile Long range Driveway Alarm while the runner up is the Chamberlain Group Mighty Mule Wireless Driveway Alarm.

9.7
TOP PICK
A quarter mile range driveway alarm

Built with up to 4 sensors per zone, the Guardline ¼ Mile Long Range driveway alarm delivers superior sensitivity and highly reactive detection.

Top Features
  • 4 sensors per zone.
  • 40-foot detection range.
  • Weather-resistant elements.

Sources

medium.com

Need Help with a Smart Device?
Get a Free Estimate from a Local Expert!
Installation · Setup · Maintenance · Repairs · Replacements
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