The opening sensors working with Alexa are relatively few on the market. They are, however, relatively useful because they allow a home warning system to be set up at a lower cost. If in addition you have cameras with motion detection, you are well equipped. But the possibilities are wider, such as turning off a thermostat when a door is detected or even warning you that a mail arrives in your mailbox. It is moreover this last positioning that we will also present to you. We have chosen to test the Earthsmart DW (for Door and Window) Sensor, available at an average price of € 16,99, so quite affordable. We think about your wallet!
Earthsmart DW Sensor: the sense of simplicity
Le opening detector comes in a small blue packaging, relatively compact and attractivet: a visual of the product, the CE and RoHS certifications highlighted and the characteristics of the detector as well as the QR-Code Smart Life.
We find there the detector in itself formed of two units, one double-sided game, for an bag of screws and notice in english. The latter is quite explicit on use via Smart Life, gives examples of requests to be made to Alexa...
The opening detector is a fairly simple device in principle. There are two separate units: the main module and the “trigger”. The “trip unit” comprises a simple magnet which will make it possible, by playing with the contactor of the main part, to detect an opening or a closing, therefore by opening or closing the circuit via a flexible blade. It is therefore necessary to have a magnet strong enough to have a minimum of margin during the installation, but not too much so that a half-open door is not considered closed. In the present case, the tolerance given is 1 cm, which was confirmed during our tests.
Regarding the detector as such, it is in fairly average quality white plastic, quite flexible. It comprises a Wi-Fi button allowing pairing to the network or re-pairing it. This is a real plus. It has quite large dimensions if we compare it to some competitors like the Konyks Senso already tested by us : 9,3cm long, 4cm wide and 2cm thick, count 1,3 cm in width for the smallest element. That is more than 2 cm in length and 1,5 in width more than the Senso. It works with 2 AAA batteries not included.
So there you have it, it's a very simple device, perhaps too cheap in appearance.
Earthsmart DW Sensor: it's B.AL.
The installation is relatively simple, although it depends on where you want to install it. The standard installation will consist in placing it astride the jamb of a door or a window and the removable part (the door or the window).
If the frame is at the same level as the interior part of the door (yes because putting the detector on the outside is of limited interest), there is no problem. If, on the other hand, you have an offset (usually the thickness of the last panel of the door) between the door and the jamb, you may have to put the small module on a support so that it can be placed at the same height as the main module. Indeed, the magnet is not very powerful and the contact area is quite small (you have to line up the two arrows on each module), so it's easy to not detect anything at all. Being relatively easy to disassemble, you can insert a more powerful magnet in the annex module if you wish to avoid putting a wedge or the like.
The installation is done very quickly with the double-sided provided. You can also use the screws if you want to avoid sticking the device on the frames, especially as the 3M is very powerful.
In our case, we wanted to think outside the box by installing the detector in a letterbox. You may remember our tutorial for the Konyks Senso consisting of installing it in the BAL to detect the arrival of a package (therefore the opening)? Well, let's be crazy, let's try to detect the insertion of an envelope!
It's not really complicated, but you have to take the dimensions and try to be as ready as possible concerning the two guide arrows. The installation will depend on your box but the "trigger" will be put on the shutter of the BAL et the main module inside the box, surely glued in height. It is necessary to provide a small extension for the latter. Do not hesitate to change the magnet because it can quickly be tedious to find yourself at an ideal distance, especially if you have to change the direction detector.
Be careful though because the operating range of the Sensor is -10 to 40 ° C, which can be quickly reached outdoors. For operating humidity, it is between 20 and 85%.
Earthsmart DW Sensor: installation under Smart Life
The detector will work with 2 batteries to an estimated life of 6 to 10 months depending on use and location. It will connect to your network WI-FI at 2,4 GHz only (50 m range) and is Tuya compatible Smart, IFTTT, GH and Alexa.
Pairing is extremely simple. As soon as the batteries are inserted, the small LED of the Network button flashes rapidly. If you miss the time limit, press it again, it is very convenient. In Smart Life, go get the “Door Sensor” hardware. The rest does not change with a standard installation via Smart Life.
Once done, entering the device on the app, you will see its open or closed status, but also some settings like the history and desired alarms. However, everything is in English ...
However, the extras are quite limited : history of openings and closings, battery level and notifications. This is where we are a little limited even if the essential is there: notification of opening and closing. These will be in push on your phone. But no low battery alarm or vandalism alert like some competitors do (which is handy to see if your detector has been ripped off).
And with Alexa, what does it give? you ask yourself… Well here is the answer. Opening detectors are part of the connected devices that can be integrated into a routine when they have a particular status. For example, you can create an alarm with loud music in the house and a light in red if it is in the open position! There is a way to have fun.
For example, here is a routine that goes with the installation in the mailbox (in this case, the device is called Envelopes).