A driveway alarm will alert you the minute someone steps onto your property, and you’ll know who’s coming up your driveway before they even get to your front door. If you want to improve home security or just have a little more peace of mind before falling asleep at night, a driveway alarm may be a good option.
In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team will recommend some of the most popular choices for driveway alarms, provide tips on how they work, and help you choose the best home security for your home.
Most Popular Choices for Driveway Alarms
1. Guardline Long Range Wireless Driveway Alarm
- Starts at $99.00
- Easy to install with DIY installation, this alarm detects any motion within 40 feet.
- Alarm system can be expanded up to 16 sensors per receiver in four different zones 2-year warranty and guaranteed 500-foot range even with trees, buildings, and walls blocking the sensor Wireless, battery-operated, and weatherproof
2. Chamberlain CWA2000 Driveway Alert
- Starts at $59.18
- This affordable and convenient security system has weatherproof features and adjustable sensitivity control, perfect for homes, business, and worksites.
- Affordable and easy to install yourself with no wiring required Utilizes passive infrared sensors to detect motion with the sensitivity able to be adjusted Base system is equipped with one sensor and receiver, with the sensor detecting motion up to 30 feet and transmitting to a receiver up to a half mile away
3. Rodann Electronics Wireless Driveway Alarm
- Starts at $97.90
- This driveway alarm detects motion up to 50 feet and will ping the receiver up to 1,000 feet away through heavily wooded areas, terrain, and walls.
- Receiver has an LED display to keep track and show how many times the senor has been activated System allows user to add as many transmitters or receivers as needed to fit their space Made in the USA
What Is a Driveway Alarm?
A driveway alarm is a home security device that’s designed to detect people or vehicles entering through a driveway. It’s often included with a more comprehensive home security system and alerts homeowners of unexpected intruders or visitors.
Benefits of Driveway Alarms
A driveway alarm is beneficial if you have a long driveway, live in a secluded or rural area, or want to be notified when someone comes up your driveway. Here are a few other benefits of having a driveway alarm:
- Prevents burglars and other unwanted intruders from entering your property
- Easily syncs with home motion sensors installed within your home, allowing you to have a holistic view of security on your property
- May increase the resale value of your property
- Typically requires a very simple installation process
- Can be used for more than just the driveway (some can monitor your pool area, garage, and backyard)
How Does a Driveway Alarm Work?
Most driveway alarm systems are composed of a sensor, or transmitter, and a receiver. The sensor is placed at the start of the driveway and, depending on the range of the system, will transmit a signal to the receiver placed within the house when someone or something passes in front of the passive infrared (PIR) sensor.
The range of the sensor and transmission distance are dependent on the system you choose. Some driveway alarms have a range of up to half a mile, while others have a sensor range of 30–50 feet.
What to Consider Before Buying a Driveway Alarm
When selecting a driveway alarm, here are a few factors to consider:
Before selecting a driveway alarm, determine where you want to mount and install sensors. Ensure the alarm you select has the sensor range to reach across your driveway so it can be tripped and send the signal to the transmitter in your house.
Sensors send a wireless signal to a receiver in your house, sounding the alarm that someone is coming up your driveway. Determine the distance from your home and the receiver to the sensor to ensure it will receive the transmission. The range for the systems recommended in this article have a range of 500–1,000 feet.
Density of your property
The density of your property, including any surrounding woods and trees need to be factored in when selecting your driveway alarm, since some are better at transmitting through dense areas than others.
Motion detection range
Some sensors detect only vehicles, while others detect vehicles, people, and large animals. Consider which is important to you in your notifications.
All the systems we recommended in this review require DIY installation with wireless technology. Make sure you have the tools you need to install sensors and measure out the correct distance to ensure the sensors and receivers work together.
Many alarms come with one base and one driveway sensor. If you have a longer driveway or want to monitor other areas of your property, you may want to add on additional sensors.
Some driveway alarms will come with features like volume control and motion detection, while others will be solar-powered or come with additional security cameras. Think about your home security needs before settling on a specific type of sensor.
Best Driveway Alarms
Here are some of the best driveway alarms and sensors on the market today:
Best Driveway Alarms and Sensors
|Sensor range||40 feet||30 feet||50 feet|
|Receiver range||500 feet||1/2 mile||1,000 feet|
Guardline offers numerous customization options and detects vehicles, people, and animals, allowing you to monitor all types of movement on your property. Because the receiver supports 16 sensors in four zones with a transmission range of a quarter of a mile, this system is ideal for individuals with a lot of land.
Each zone has a dedicated LED light, so you know which area has tripped the alarm, and the receiver has multiple alarm sounds that can be set. The sensors run on four AAA batteries and are encased in waterproof housing. One drawback to this driveway alarm is that the sensors may malfunction in windy weather conditions and strong gusts can trip the sensor and cause a false alarm.
A basic Chamberlain package comes with one sensor and one receiver. The sensor is easy to mount, has a range of 30 feet, and can transmit to a receiver half a mile away. The sensor relies on heat-to-sense vehicles, so you’ll need to position the sensor so that it can pick up the heat from a vehicle’s exhaust.
This system is a great option for someone who wants a more affordable alarm or someone who doesn’t need more than four sensors.
Rodann offers the largest range of sensor detection (up to 50 feet) compared to the other driveway alarms listed in this article, and the sensitivity is such that it doesn’t trigger many false alarms. Rodann can detect motion up to 50 feet away and transmits to a receiver up to 1,000 feet away. Rodann’s receiver also keeps an LED numerical track of how many times the sensor is tripped.
Driveway alarms are valuable in preventing unwanted intruders from getting close to your home. Though these are great to set up perimeter security, they’re only one part of a comprehensive home security system. For more comprehensive home security, consider purchasing a security system from ADT or Vivint.
Frequently Asked Questions About Driveway Alarms
How do I install a driveway alarm?
Find a key point at the entrance of your driveway to install the sensor. Depending on the system you choose, you may need to mount it closer to the ground. Most sensors are battery-operated and either need to be strapped to a fence or mailbox post or screwed into a post or tree.
Once the sensors are mounted, plug in the transmitter and ensure they’re paired and transmitting to each other. Set the alarm sound you want for each zone of your alarm system.
Where should I install my driveway alarm?
We recommend installing your driveway alarm at the start of your driveway, either on a fence, mailbox post, or tree. Mount the sensor close to the ground to detect heat and motion.
How does a driveway alarm work?
A sensor detects motion and transmits a wireless signal to a receiver in your home, sounding an alarm and notifying you someone is coming up your driveway.
Who would benefit from a driveway alarm?
Driveway alarms are especially beneficial for those who live in rural areas or on more secluded properties. While many choose these areas for privacy and quiet, it can pose a security risk if you’re unaware of someone coming up your driveway.
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