To understand how pet immune motion sensors work we need to understand how the different types of regular motion sensors work. Once we understand that, we can get a better idea of what the challenges are in introducing pets to the system.
There are several different types of motion detectors that can be used in the home. Some are more advanced than others some might be difficult to modify for pet immunity.
What are pet immune motion detectors , how do they work?
All motion detectors are either passive or active.
If a sensor is active, it means that it will send out some form of energy, that will usually bounce off an object in motion and return to the sensor. In most cases, a signal is constantly sent from the sensor into the room it is monitoring. The signal will bounce off stationary objects like furniture and return to the sensor. The computer in the sensor sill record what the room looks like and store the information. If an intruder enters the room, the sensor uses the stored picture of the room to detect that there is a new picture being presented.
If they are passive, it simply means that they do not give off any form of energy in order to detect motion. They only detect energy from the moving object. A passive sensor will use heat, sound or video to detect an object in a room.
What are the different types of sensors?
Passive infrared or PIR:
These passive sensors constantly monitor a room for heat. Most living things emit heat that is visible in the infrared spectrum. The sensor “sees” an object and triggers and alarm if it has been set. This is one of the most common types of sensor in a home security system.
A microwave sensor is an active sensor that constantly sends out harmless microwave radiation signals. The signals bounce off objects in a room and return to the sensor. If something moves in the room, the sensor will detect an irregularity in the returning signals and set off the alarm.
These active sensors work in a similar way to microwave systems. They use high-frequency sound waves that cannot be heard by the human ear to detect motion. One of the problems with these systems is that sounds outside the room being monitored can interfere with the sensor.
Mesh or Tomographic sensors:
These active sensors are used in groups. Several sensors will be installed and pass radio signals to each other. If the signal is broken by a moving object, the sensors will trigger an alarm.
Video motion detectors are relatively new and depend on software to operate effectively. Essentially, these detectors simply take a constant video recording of a room that is passed into a computer and analyzed. If the software detects movement in the room, it will set off the alarm. This method is very useful if recordings are needed.
Which sensors are the best for pet immune systems?
Passive infrared and video sensors are the easiest to configure for pet immunity. It should be noted that standard sensors may not be able to be modified. You would need to purchase a sensor that is specifically designed to ignore pets.
A passive infrared sensor can be modified to “ignore” a heat source that is smaller than that of a human. When these sensors pick up a heat source, they can measure the size and temperature. If a small dog or a cat enters the room, they will be ignored. Unfortunately, larger dogs can still set off the alarm if it has not been calibrated correctly.
There are also combined sensor systems that use passive infrared and microwave at the same time. These systems require both sensors to trip at the same time for the alarm to be set off.
Video systems can be programmed to ignore small animals quite easily. They use similar software to facial recognition systems to determine the height and width of an object moving in the room.
It can be inconvenient for you and your neighbours if your pets constantly set off the alarm system.
Some people resort to disconnecting the system completely, you should never do this. You would be putting yourself and your family at risk.
In some cases, people simply allow their alarm system to trigger constantly. This should also be avoided. It can lead to noise complaints and fines. If the problem persists, emergency services like the police and fire departments may add your home to a “Do Not Respond” list due to consecutive false alarms.
In almost all cases, it is easier, cheaper and more convenient to have a pet immune alarm system installed in your home.