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Zigbee motion sensors integrate with your existing smart home system to detect any human motion and trigger a response. You can configure these sensors for various applications, such as triggering lights, sirens, automation of smart locks, alarm systems, controlling HVAC systems, and more. 

In this article, we’ve compiled a list of the best Zigbee motion sensors on the market right now – along with important factors to consider when buying one! 

9.3 Aqara Motion Sensor, REQUIRES AQARA HUB, Zigbee Connection, for Alarm System and Smart Home Automation, Broad Detection Range, Compatible with Apple HomeKit, Alexa, Works With IFTTT
Top PickPrecise and Long-Range Motion Detection
9.2 Aeotec SmartThings Motion Sensor, Zigbee, Magnetic mounting, Works with Smart Home Hub
Runner UpFeatures Integrated Temperature Monitoring
9.0 Philips Hue Indoor Motion Sensor for Smart Lights (Requires Hue Hub, Installation-Free, Smart Home, Exclusively for Philips Hue Smart Bulbs)
Completely Wireless Motion Sensor
8.8 Centralite Micro Motion Sensor (Works with SmartThings, Wink, Vera, and ZigBee platforms)
For Security and Home Automation

Best Zigbee Motion Sensors

9.3
Top Pick
Precise and Long-Range Motion Detection

The Aqara Motion Sensor can detect movements precisely for wireless controlling of various smart devices in your house.

Top Features
  • It features a maximum detection range of 7 meters.
  • It supports the Zigbee 3.0 wireless protocol.
  • It offers a wide operating temperature range, between 10°C to 45°C.

The Aqara Motion Sensor is a battery-operated, Zigbee-compatible sensor. This sensor is suitable for various home automation applications, including;

  • Access control
  • Light control
  • Garage door operation
  • Air conditioning control

The maximum detection range of the Aqara Motion Sensor is 22 feet. The installation of this device involves no tool. For permanent fixing of the mounting stand, the vendor supplies a double-sided sticker.

Infrared Sensor

The Aqara Motion Sensor incorporates an infrared sensor. It generates a signal to detect human motion by sensing heat sources that are moving. That signal is then forwarded wirelessly to the connected controller or hub. 

What we liked
  • It features an integrated alarm mode.
  • It allows you to adjust the detection angle.
  • Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Apple HomeKit.
What we didn't like
  • It requires an Aqara hub to operate.

Tech Specs

Model:             RTCGQ11LM
Dimensions:   30 mm × 30 mm × 33 mm
Battery Type: CR2450
9.2
Runner Up
Features Integrated Temperature Monitoring

The Aeotec Motion Sensor offers real-time temperature monitoring in addition to motion detection.

Top Features
  • No external power source is needed.
  • It features an integrated temperature sensor.
  • It supports the Zigbee 3.0 communication protocol.

The Aeotec Motion Sensor is designed to detect motion and measure temperature. This device can be incorporated into various home automation schemes. The Aeotec Motion Sensor is shipped with 3-meter adhesive strips, a magnetic ball mount, and a CR2 type battery. 

The magnetic ball mount facilitates the deployment of the sensing device at a required angle. Through this motion-sensing device, you can automate either a single or a group of compatible smart lights. 

Requirements 

Your Aeotec Motion Sensor requires the Aeotec Smart Home Hub and the Samsung SmartThings app (Android or iOS) to operate. It is a battery-powered device and does not require any external power source. The Aeotec Motion Sensor is compatible with the Zigbee 3.0 radio protocol and uses the 2.4 GHz frequency bandwidth for communication.

Aeotec Motion Sensor Applications  

Consumers prefer these motion sensors by Aeotec for the automation of lighting primarily. However, a combination of this motion sensor, an internet-enabled hub, and an appropriate app can act as a cost-effective security system. 

Using the resources mentioned above, you can construct a security system to receive notifications about unexpected movements in your home while residing in any part of the world. 

Automated Climate Control

The integrated temperature sensor on this device makes it a good choice for automatic indoor climate control. You can create a customized climate control regime using smart ACs or fans, temperature sensors, a compatible Zigbee hub, and the SmartThings app. 

What we liked
  • It features an integrated temperature sensor.
  • Compatible with SmartThings (Android and iOS devices).
  • Its battery lasts up to 1 year.
What we didn't like
  • Suitable for indoor use only.

Tech Specs

Operating Temperature:         32 ~ 104 °F
Battery Type:                        1 x CR2
Radio Frequency:                  2.4 GHz
9.0
Completely Wireless Motion Sensor

The Philips Hue Motion Sensor offers wireless control of Philips Hue smart bulbs.

Top Features
  • A battery-powered device that requires no wiring.
  • Automatically switches to the night light setting during the night.
  • It comes with an integrated daylight sensor that keeps the lights off when not needed.

The Philips Hue Motion Sensor detects motion and generates a signal. These sensors offer wireless and automatic controlling of smart bulbs. The Philips Hue Motion Sensor is designed for indoor use only. The operating temperature limit for this motion sensor is 0°C to 40°C.

It is essential to understand that the Philips Hue Motion Sensor can only be used with a Philips Hue Bridge. You can access and configure this device using the Philips Hue app. The Philips Hue Motion Sensor is compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

Apple HomeKit Compatibility

For Apple HomeKit functionality, you will have to acquire a 2nd generation Philips Hue Bridge as the motion sensors are not compatible with Apple HomeKit.

Temperature and Light Measurement

The Philips Hue Motion Sensor can also measure ambient lighting and temperature. In addition to motion detection, you get lux and temperature reading in real-time using this sensor. So, it’s a 3-in-1 device that can bring more prospects in light control.

Installation

The Philips Hue Motion Sensor is a battery-powered device that can be installed wirelessly. Each sensor unit is shipped with a magnetic mounting bracket and a screw. 

The mounting bracket can be screwed into any drillable surface, or you can simply attach it to a metallic exterior that attracts a magnet.

There is a circular recess at the rear side of the sensor device for the bracket to fit in. However, for installing the motion sensor at the desired angle, the mounting bracket can easily be attached to any part of the raised area around the circular recess.

What we liked
  • It supports the Philips Hue app.
  • You can deploy it at any angle.
  • It comes with a magnetic mounting bracket.
What we didn't like
  • It requires the Philips Hue Bridge.

Tech Specs

Weight:            0.14 lb
IP Rating:          IP42
Battery Type:  AAA
8.8
For Security and Home Automation

A versatile motion sensor.

Top Features
  • A 2-in-1 motion sensor for temperature measurement and motion detection.
  • It is compatible with other devices by the same manufacturer.
  • It works with SmartThings, Wink, Vera, and Zigbee platforms.

The Centralite Motion Sensor offers universal compatibility. With any Zigbee HA 1.2 certified bridge, hub, platform, or controller, you can use this sensor. This motion sensor has a communication range of 90 meters. The superior range of this motion sensor makes it a viable solution for large homes.

The Centralite Motion Sensor features a built-in temperature sensor and power amplifier. This model can receive updates over the air. Each unit ships with screws and adhesive strips for easy mounting.

Installation

  1. Ensure that your home’s Zigbee mesh network is open to new devices/sensors.
  2. Locate the plastic tab at the bottom of the sensor and pull it out.
  3. The device will immediately start searching for an open Zigbee network to join.
  4. Some controllers and hubs require additional steps such as categorizing or naming the device.
What we liked
  • It is compatible with all Zigbee HA 1.2 devices.
  • It has 2 to 3 years of battery life.
  • It comes with a 12-month limited warranty.
  • It features a detection range of up to 15 feet.
What we didn't like
  • The mounting bracket it comes with is immobile.

Tech Specs

Battery Type:                                                 CR-2 (1x)
Operating Voltage:                                      3 V
Operating Temperature:                           0° to 40°C
Wireless Protocol:                                        Zigbee HA 1.2

Zigbee Motion Sensors Decision-Making Factors

Range

The range is considered an important factor when it comes to motion sensors. Long-range sensors can detect a moving object earlier than short-range sensors. So, long-range sensors are preferred for home automation and security applications.  Besides detection range, ensure that the one you have chosen has an adequate communication range as well.

Battery or Hardwired

Both battery-operated and hard-wired motion sensors work similarly. However, hard-wired motion sensors require additional wiring. You can instantly deploy and relocate a battery-powered motion sensor. 

Unlike hard-wired Zigbee motion sensors, no external power supply is needed for battery-operated Zigbee motion sensors. Though it depends on various factors, the batteries of motion sensors usually last longer than a year in most cases. 

Most vendors ship Zigbee motion sensors with pre-installed batteries. Some benefits of battery-operated sensors are:

  • These sensors are not prone to power failures. 
  • You can quickly relocate these sensors.
  • You can adjust their detection angle.
  • Homeowners can install these sensors without any professional assistance.
  • Unlike hard-wired sensors, battery-powered sensors don't require a power outlet nearby.

Type of Sensor

Microwave, Ultrasonic, Passive Infrared (PIR), and Tomographic are the most common motion sensors. Each type of motion sensor comes with certain advantages and disadvantages. Today, PIR-type sensors are preferred for daily home automation applications. 

PIR-type sensors are better when it comes to cost and power consumption. Microwave and Ultrasonic type motion sensors are more precise than PIR-type sensors, but they are not commercially viable for domestic applications. 

PIR Sensors Working Principle 

Passive Infrared sensors detect the IR radiation of warm-blooded humans and animals. In these sensors, a thin pyroelectric film emits electricity against the detected IR radiation. Each time it detects motion, a positive signal is transmitted wirelessly by the sensor. 

Smart Integration

Generally, Zigbee motion sensors cannot perform independently. These sensors detect motion and generate signals against each qualifying event. A home automation controller or hub wirelessly receives that signal for further action. So, the Zigbee motion sensor you are willing to purchase must complement your existing home automation hardware.

For example, the motion sensors by Philips can only be coupled with the Philips Hue Bridge. The Centralite Motion Sensor is a universal sensor that supports almost every Zigbee HA 1.2 compliant home automation platform.

Similar is the case with software-level integration. There are various Zigbee motion sensors available that support third-party home automation apps. So, as a homeowner, you must consider these things while in the planning phase.

The Verdict

Zigbee motion sensors work in combination with other home automation devices. With these sensors, you can automate various routine tasks such as controlling the lights, operating the HVAC system, opening/closing the garage door, and more.

Homeowners planning to acquire motion sensors must ensure that the products they are considering are compatible with their existing hardware, such as controllers, bulbs, hubs, and more. A home automation system that incorporates precise Zigbee motion sensors can bring various benefits to homeowners including cutting down your power bills and constantly monitoring your home when you are away. 

9.3
Top Pick
Precise and Long-Range Motion Detection

The Aqara Motion Sensor can detect movements precisely for wireless controlling of various smart devices in your house.

Top Features
  • It features a maximum detection range of 7 meters.
  • It supports the Zigbee 3.0 wireless protocol.
  • It offers a wide operating temperature range, between 10°C to 45°C.

Sources

philips-hue.com

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