What are outdoor security lights with motion sensors?
More and more people are making the decision to get outdoor motion sensor lights. It’s a good idea, especially if you have a larger property. Lights can deter potential intruders and animals from wandering into your yard. Even if it doesn’t deter, a strong light (especially paired with a motion sensor security camera) can help you identify anything coming onto your property.
There are lots of options for outdoor security lights, motion detection or otherwise. The most popular light for security is flood lights. Flood lights are perfect for security lighting because they can cover so much area with just one light. Depending on the size of your yard, just one flood light is all you will need.
Motion sensor flood lights are great because then you don’t need to have bright lights shining in your yard the whole night, they will just turn on when someone approaches. Not having flood lights on all the time will save energy as well as not being so bright at night.
Outdoor motion sensor lights are not only helpful to save energy, but also work well for security lights. The light flashing on suddenly when someone comes up to your house can help alert you to a potential intruder, and the unexpected light can deter them from coming closer. Many motion detector flood lights have a wide detection range, some up to almost 80 feet! This paired with a security camera that has a motion sensor will easily alert you to any activity on your property.
How do outdoor security lights with motion sensors work?
So how does a motion sensor work? There are several types of motion detection devices you can use, some of the most popular are PIR sensors and microwave sensors.
PIR motion sensors
PIR stands for passive infrared. PIR sensors detect infrared radiation. The human body puts off heat, and an infrared sensor can pick up on it. A PIR sensor views the room in infrared light, and looks for changes in temperature caused by body heat. PIR sensors are less expensive than microwave sensors, and also operate on less energy.
One drawback is PIR sensors often work on cycles, meaning they scan for movement, turn on the light, and then the sensors turn off until the light goes out after a set time, then the sensor turns back on to look for movement. Besides being inconvenient for the people in the room, it can also lead to blind spots where the light may not turn on. They also may not detect very slow movement or movement in a room that is hot (since it is based on temperature).
However, overall PIR sensors are a great option for home security. They make for great indoor or outdoor security lighting motion sensors.
Microwave sensors are another option for motion detection. They work similar to a radar gun used to determine a car’s speed. The sensor puts out microwaves and then receives the reflections back, like echolocation. By measuring how and when the waves get back to the sensor, it can determine if there is anything moving in its path.
Since microwave sensors don’t use visual information, but waves, they can sense movement behind walls and around corners, unlike PIR sensors. However, their higher sensitivity means that they are more prone to false alarms from people outside, falling objects, blowing leaves, etc. that trigger motion.
Hybrid sensors, also called dual tech sensors, use both PIR sensors and microwave sensors. By requiring both sensors to be tripped to turn on the light, it lowers the amount of false alarms.
What are the benefits of installing motion sensor lights?
Installing security lights is always a good idea. Lights are a great deterrent for potential intruders and animals crossing onto your property. Adding a motion sensor to your lights will conserve tons of energy. Both indoor and outdoor lighting waste a lot of energy by being on when people aren’t using them. Motion sensors allow for the lights to automatically turn on and off when people are coming and going.
Besides energy conservation, motion detection lights are great for home security. By turning on suddenly, the lights can startle a potential intruder from your home, as well as letting you know that they are there. A security camera with a motion sensor and light will also help record better images of your yard and the people coming into it.
Where should I put a motion sensor light?
There are plenty of good places to put a motion sensor light and other outdoor lighting ideas for the front of your house.
If you can only put one motion sensor light outside your house, put it by your door. Entrances and exits are great places for motion lights. Lights are always needed for when you come home at night and need to see the lock, but can be forgotten about in the morning and waste energy. It also makes the most sense for home security. Anybody trying to break into your home will try your door, and will get caught by the light (and camera if you have one).
You can also put motion detection by path lights so people can see as they go by your house. You can put them by the garage so you can see when working out there. You can put them by the pool and by the fence to light up the backyard when you are out there.
How do I save energy with motion sensor lights?
Motion sensor lights will already save you so much money by being off when people aren’t in the room, but if you want to save more energy, use LED light bulbs for all your lights. LED light bulbs use way less energy than other bulbs and will operate for much longer without needing maintenance. They also operate better in cold conditions and are perfect for outdoor security lighting.
An LED security light will operate better, last you much longer, and save even more energy than standard bulbs. That’s why we’ve made it our mission to help as many homeowners as possible save on energy while creating discrete, beautiful home lighting. Ask for your free quote today and see your home in a new light!