Best Smart Home Sensors in 2017

Product Features / Benefits Price / ROI Buying Options
Protect image Protect

Smoke and CO sensing

Nest product integration

Self-checks battery

$119

Best Buy

Amazon

Gas and Water Monitor image Gas and Water Monitor

Gas and water monitoring

Mobile app

Easy installation

$179

Smappee

Tank Utility image Tank Utility

Monitors propane levels

Mobile app

Recognizes leaks

$199

Tank Utility

Indoor Air Quality Monitor image Indoor Air Quality Monitor

Tracks 4 air quality measures

Mobile app

Ventilation system integration

$199

Amazon

Smart Home Sensors Buyer's Guide

What is a smart home sensor?

Many aspects of your home’s environment operate in the background. Throughout every day of the year, water is flowing through your pipes, gas is entering your home to be used in your stove or other appliances, and smoke detectors monitor the air for signs of a fire. This is just to name a few of the behind-the-scenes processes going on in our homes on a regular basis. 

Smart home sensors can connect you to the inner workings of your home, giving you control and flexibility over how you use energy, respond to problems, and make your home run more intelligently. Products like water monitors and gas monitors take your home’s most basic and necessary functions and moves them online for easy monitoring. As a result, they can quickly and easily diagnose problems in your home that too often fall under the radar until it’s too late.

Why buy a smart home sensor?

What if you could gain insight into some of the quieter operations happening in your home? Being able to monitor all parts of your home can lead to surprisingly high monetary and energy savings. By investing a little bit up front, you can see huge cost reductions down the road with home monitoring.

Additionally, peace of mind is a big reason to invest in smart home sensors of any kind. Nearly all home monitor has the ability to connect to mobile devices, giving you instant feedback about your home. If anything ever goes wrong, like a spike in harmful particulates in the air or a water pipe leak, you will know almost instantly. Having smart home sensors that keep a careful eye on your living spaces means you can relax and let technology worry about your home for you.

What smart home sensor features are important to consider?

Smart home sensors are a diverse product group, and thus have many different features that you might want to keep an eye out for.

Function

Because of the diversity of product types in this category, knowing which services your new smart device offers is crucial. For example, some smoke detectors may also detect other toxins, which means you don’t need to buy two separate devices. In general, smart home sensors may offer more than one home function, and it’s worth your time to seek out the device (or devices) that fulfills your needs.

Wireless features/mobile app

If you want remote control of your home systems, you should look for a smart home sensor that can connect to your WiFi and transmit data. This option also enables you to receive real-time and summary data wirelessly, which lets you see how your home devices and systems are running from anywhere, at any time.

Ease of installation

The ease of installation will depend on the type of monitor you choose for your home. Many devices will require calling your electrician to help with an installation, which can bring in an additional cost to your monitor. Importantly, it is always safer to pay a little extra for a professional to install your device correctly.

Appearance

Aside from function, the aesthetics of your new smart sensor can play a role in your purchase. Smart sensors should be “smart” both technologically and in their looks. Many sensors come in multiple colors, which makes it easy for you to customize to your home’s decor. 

EnergySage Smart Home Sensors Reviews
  • Review: Protect by Nest

    Protect image

    Nest Protect. The Protect, at its core, is an advanced sensor capable of detecting both smoke and carbon monoxide in your house. When it detects something isn’t right, it will tell you, both vocally and with an alert to your smartphone, where you can shut off the alarm. 

    The Nest Protect has many smaller, unique features that add to its appeal. At night, the Protect doubles as a light by sensing motion below and dimly lighting up a dark room for visibility purposes. The Protect also links to Nest thermostats and can turn off your heat if there is a carbon monoxide leak or smoke in your house for additional safety. If you are looking to get smart about home safety and monitoring, the Nest Protect is a proven, easy to use device that will provide peace of mind and professional-quality safety.

    Buying Options: Best Buy | Amazon
  • Review: Gas and Water Monitor by Smappee

    Gas and Water Monitor image

    Smappee’s gas and water monitor can track your gas and water consumption and send it all wirelessly to your phone via their free mobile app. Within the app, you can see a real-time report of your gas and water usage, as well as the associated cost of that usage. Installation is fairly straightforward, and as long as your meters are not digital, it is as simple as attaching the sensors to your existing gas and/or water meters.

    In addition to informing you about your gas and water usage over time, the Smappee can sense leaks in your home and alert you when they form. Any abnormal consumption of gas or water in your home is caught by Smappee, which sends an instant alert to your smartphone. 

    The Smappee gas and water is a neat monitoring device that provides transparency into home energy usage, and makes information about your home easily accessible by presenting it right on your mobile device.

    Buying Options: Smappee
  • Review: Tank Utility by Tank Utility

    Tank Utility image

    If your home runs on propane, Tank Utility is the smart monitor for you. Tank Utility does everything a home energy monitor does, but for your propane tank. With wireless connection to its mobile app, Tank Utility can send you all of the propane information you might need, from daily use or general long-term trends to leaks in your system. Tank Utility means that losing money due to a propane tank leak will be a thing of the past: it can instantly recognize leaks and alert you right to your smart phone.

    One notable feature of Tank Utility is its ability to keep you up-to-date on the propane level in your tank. Normally, your propane supplier will simply schedule regular refills from a truck that comes to fill your tank. Unfortunately, this method of refill results in wasted energy from transporting the propane, as you most often don’t need a refill until more time passes. With Tank Utility, you can more efficiently plan for refills and cut out the unnecessary environmental impact of transporting unneeded propane.

    Buying Options: Tank Utility
  • Review: Indoor Air Quality Monitor by Foobot

    Indoor Air Quality Monitor image

    If you ever have concerns about air quality in your home, the Foobot is the smart device for you. Capable of monitoring four different air quality measures (volatile organic compounds, particulate matter, humidity, and temperature), the Foobot can report all you might want to know about the air in your home, and if you are breathing in an unhealthy mix. It will even give you a real-time snapshot of your air quality on the device itself through convenient colored lights.

    Foobot has home automation capabilities controlled through its mobile app to automatically tweak your home atmosphere. By pairing it with a smart ventilation system, Foobot can switch on your home system whenever pollution levels get too high. For example, if you have a dust allergy, you can trust the Foobot to keep particulate levels in your home low so you don't have to worry about having a reaction. 

    Buying Options: Amazon
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