Best Driveway Alarms and Sensors of 2023

We research over 20 top driveway sensors and alarms to find the best for your home.
Best overall
Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm
Guardline
  • pro
    Up to 16 sensors
  • pro
    40-ft. motion detection
  • pro
    Advanced controls
Best mobile app
YoLink SpeakerHub and Outdoor Motion Sensor Security Kit
YoLink
  • pro
    Up to 200 sensors
  • pro
    40-ft. motion detection
  • pro
    Smart home compatibility
Best budget alarm
white motion sensor and base unit
1byone
  • con
    Up to 5 sensors
  • pro
    24-ft. motion detection
  • pro
    36 alarm tones
Best sensor options
Dakota Alert DCMA-4K Plus Driveway Alarm
Dakota Alert
  • pro
    Up to 16 sensors
  • pro
    100-ft. motion detection
  • pro
    Multiple sensor types
Best solar alarm
eMACROS Driveway Alarm
eMACROS
  • pro
    Up to 16 sensors
  • pro
    30-ft. motion detection
  • pro
    Adjustable motion sensitivity
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Whether you have a long winding driveway or a short road leading to your garage, driveway sensors—like our top pick, Guardline—are a smart way to monitor vehicles entering and exiting your property. These devices are easy to install and fit a range of budgets for long and short driveways.

Take a look through the different sensors and their effective ranges, and think about the geographic features around your home. Heavy foliage and hills may reduce those ranges, so figure out which sensor would work best for your home—and never be surprised by a visitor again.



Compare the best driveway alarm sensors

Product
Best for
Price
Detection range Icon Tooltip  Dark
Receiver range Icon Tooltip  Dark
Sensor limit Icon Tooltip  Dark
Alarm tones
Learn more
Best overall40 ft.1,320 ft. (1/4 mile) Up to 1632
Best mobile app40 ft.1,320 ft. (1/4 mile) Up to 200Customizable
Best budget alarm24 ft.1,000 ft.Up to 536
Best sensor options100 ft.5,280 ft. (1 mile) Up to 1612
Best solar alarm30 ft.2,640 ft. (1/2 mile) Up to 164

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Best wireless driveway alarm reviews

1. Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm: Best overall

Best overall
Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

The Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm is one of the most advanced driveway alarms you can buy. We love that you can adjust practically every feature on your sensor and receiver to suit your needs or improve performance. Guardline earns high customer ratings and offers the best user manual in the category.

pro
Pros
pro Flexible settings for most features
pro Customizable alert tones
pro Up to 16 sensors
con
Cons
con Limited range
con Relatively low range

Guardline uses motion detectors with passive infrared technology (PIR) to spot vehicles coming up your driveway. The sensors can detect motion up to 40 feet away, which should cover most driveways and even shorter stretches along your property line. Still, you might want to consider Dakota Alert for better options to monitor your land's perimeters.

The sensors can withstand all types of weather and work without interference. The receivers have a battery backup and a 12-volt relay to link them to additional external alarms or sirens.

You can customize almost every detection setting with Guardline. We're big fans of the four distance settings—13 feet, 23 feet, 26 feet, and 40 feet—so you can ignore people walking up a path on the other side of your driveway. There's even a unique speed sensitivity setting, so passing wildlife moving slower than 2 mph don't trigger your alarm unless you want them to.

If you don't want the system sending alerts during the day, you can turn on Night Mode to stay on top of nighttime visitors. Plus, you can remove a small cover over the motion sensor to increase the field of view for earlier alerts.

The wireless range allows for a quarter mile between the sensor and the receiver, although heavy foliage and thick walls will reduce this distance. This is shorter than the full- and half-mile ranges from Dakota Alert and eMACROS, respectively, but perfect for most people.

This driveway alarm comes with 32 customizable alert sounds and is expandable to include multiple sensors—up to 16. (Four zones with four sensors for one receiver.) You can pair specific sounds with each zone, so you'll always know where the motion is without looking.

We love Guardline for its customization options and flexibility—and we think it's perfect for most properties. The quarter-mile range isn't the longest on our list, but it's great for everything except gigantic properties.

2. YoLink SpeakerHub and Outdoor Motion Sensor Security Kit: Best mobile app

Best mobile app

The YoLink SpeakerHub and Outdoor Motion Sensor Security Kit is the only driveway alarm with a mobile app that we recommend. We like that you're not entirely reliant on a speaker and can even receive notifications away from home.

pro
Pros
pro Mobile app
pro Customizable alarm sounds
pro Up to 200 sensors
con
Cons
con No backup battery in hub
con Relatively low range

We love the YoLink SpeakerHub receiver because you can use custom alarm sounds or text-to-speech notifications. This is excellent if you want to hear something specific rather than choosing from a list of preset tones. Plus, it can help guests who aren't familiar with your tones to know what's going on.

It's even compatible with IFTTT, Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant, so you can check sensor status with a voice command or activate a smart home device when your sensor picks up movement.

You can add up to 200 sensors to YoLink. Because YoLink is more of a general smart home system, it has a massive capacity for sensors compared to purpose-built driveway alarms. It supports most sensors you might find in a security system, like leak detectors, contact sensors, and motion sensors.

YoLink's range is pretty standard—it can detect motion up to 40 feet away, and the receiver's wireless range is a quarter mile. While YoLink's not as powerful as Dakota Alert, we think it's more than capable for most properties. Unfortunately, there's no battery backup in the hub like with Guardline, so the system won't work when the power goes out.

Overall, we think YoLink is an excellent option for folks wanting smartphone driveway alerts. Despite the convenience of the YoLink app, we believe Guardline's simplicity and battery backup are better for most people.

Checklist
YoLink's door and window sensors are worth a look

YoLink is our top pick for door and window sensors because it's incredibly affordable and comes with a hub, so you don't need to buy one separately.

Learn more in our review of the Best Door and Window Sensors.

3. 1byone Driveway Alarm: Best budget alarm

Best budget alarm
white motion sensor and base unit

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

The 1byone Driveway Alarm system starts at around $26 for the receiver and one sensor—making it the most affordable driveway sensor on our list. Even the add-on sensors are a steal for about $17. (Add-on sensors from other brands usually sell for around $40 apiece.) While 1byone is a good value, you'll sacrifice the receiver range, sensor capacity, and adjustable sensitivity of our other top picks.

pro
Pros
pro 3 alert options
pro 36 chime options
pro Chimes from 25 to 80 dB
con
Cons
con Relatively low range
con Looks obvious
con Up to 5 sensors

Despite its low price, the 1byone has a decent range for its receiver (1,000 feet) and passive infrared sensors (24 feet), which should be more than enough for a suburban home. Still, you shouldn't expect strong performance unless you have a clear line of sight between the sensor and the receiver.

We like 1byone's plug-and-play installation because you can pair sensors with a quick button press after plugging in the receiver. You can pair up to five sensors with one receiver, which is fewer than other brands but understandable considering 1byone's low price. There's no battery backup unless you buy 1byone's battery-powered model.

If you want a hidden driveway motion sensor, keep looking. This one looks pretty obvious. But we like the 36 customizable chimes and the option to have visual alerts, audio alerts, or a combination of the two. The speaker can reach 80 dB, making this a good choice for people with limited hearing.

Although 1byone doesn't offer much more than the bare essential features, it's a good option if you remain unconvinced that a pricier driveway alert is worth your money.

4. Dakota Alert: Best sensor options

Best sensor options
Dakota Alert DCMA-4K Plus Driveway Alarm

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Dakota Alert is a technical powerhouse when it comes to driveway alarms. It boasts the longest wireless range on our list and is the only major brand we found that offers all four types of driveway alarms. It costs a premium and lacks some of the more sophisticated features from Guardline and YoLink, but there's no better option if you live on a massive property.

pro
Pros
pro 1-mile wireless range
pro 100-foot motion detection range
pro 4 sensor types when most brands offer 1
con
Cons
con Expensive
con 12 alarm tones

Dakota Alert's one-mile receiver range is four times further than Guardline and twice that of eMACROS. And while we came across plenty of brands with half- and quarter-mile ranges, Dakota Alert bests them all. As with other wireless driveway alarms, standard line-of-sight rules apply, so you might never see reliable alerts at one mile, but it's still quite a feat.

The motion detection range is equally impressive at 100 feet, which is wider than many suburban lots. Fortunately, you can adjust the infrared sensor's sensitivity down to 25 or 50 feet—bringing Dakota Alert down to its competitors' level—to reduce false alarms.

Despite its range, we think Dakota Alert's biggest strength is sensor variety. In addition to PIR motion detection, the company sells three other types of driveway sensors: magnetic probe, rubber hose, and photoelectric beam. Each has different strengths—and is much more expensive—but we love that you can choose the best kind for your needs and even mix and match them on the same receiver. (Check out our FAQ section to see how the different sensors work.)

You can connect up to 16 sensors on one receiver, which is typical for most driveway alarms. But there are fewer alarm tones, just 12, so there's less customization than on other brands.

We think Dakota Alert is one of the best driveway alarms if you have a long driveway and a large property—and the sensor selection is also fantastic. Still, everything about this brand is expensive, from base equipment to add-ons, so folks on a budget might need to look elsewhere.

5. eMACROS: Best solar alarm

Best solar alarm
eMACROS Driveway Alarm
eMACROS
$89.99

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

eMACROS is one of the most popular brands on Amazon and the only solar-powered model among our top picks. Aside from the occasional manual battery recharge, there's no battery maintenance. Its receiver offers excellent range and supports up to 16 sensors you can watch over multiple parts of your yard and driveway. It's also one of the pricier options we came across.

pro
Pros
pro Rechargeable battery with solar panel
pro 1/2-mile receiver range
pro Up to 16 sensors
con
Cons
con Expensive
con Limited customer support

We're big fans of eMACROS' half-mile wireless range, which is second only to Dakota Alert. But while the range is great, the driveway sensor's detection range tops out at 30 feet. This is lower than Guardline, YoLink, and Dakota Alert.

eMACROS doesn't offer many customization options—making it just a hair better than 1byone in terms of features. The only useful tweaks you can make are choosing which zone a sensor belongs in and slightly reducing the detection sensitivity to 20 feet.

The most perplexing thing about eMACROS is its customer support. A quick search of the official website revealed almost no information on how to use the product, and we needed a Google search to find a PDF copy of the manual. But the manual doesn't offer anything new that isn't on the Amazon listing. (Yeah, the Amazon listing has the same info.)

We like eMACROS and think it's a solid option if you want a solar-powered driveway alarm. But it doesn't feel as complete as most of our other picks.

More brands we considered

HTZSAFE

The HTZSAFE Driveway Alarm (about $36) is possibly the cutest product on our lineup—it boasts an adorable owl design—always a bonus here at SafeWise. It's a good budget alternative to 1byone and offers excellent features like adjustable motion sensitivity, a half-mile wireless range, and a receiver that supports up to 32 sensors. It barely missed our top five but is definitely our top runner-up.

Key features

  • Detection range: 50 ft.
  • Receiver range: 2,640 ft. (half mile)
  • Sensor limit: Up to 32
Light Bulb
HTZSAFE Solar Beam Sensor

The HTZSAFE Solar Beam Sensor (about $150) uses a photoelectric sensor to watch for activity interrupting an invisible beam of light. It sports an impressive 300-foot detection range—ideal for watching over large perimeters. Although it's probably too expensive for most budgets, we love that its rechargeable batteries and solar power don't require a cable like Seco-Larm.

Mighty Mule

The Mighty Mule Wireless Driveway Alarm (about $84) is a magnetic probe sensor that you bury next to your driveway, making it easier to hide than other sensors. It has the shortest range on our list—just 12 feet—but won't produce false alarms as often as a motion or photoelectric sensor. Unfortunately, the wireless range is only 400 feet—shorter than even 1byone—so it's not suitable for large properties or ones without strong lines of sight.

Key features

  • Detection range: 12 ft.
  • Receiver range: 400 ft.
  • Sensor limit: 1
Checklist
How does a magnetic driveway sensor work?

You can bury an electromagnetic driveway sensor next to your driveway to watch for changes in the magnetic field around it. Only a large metal object, like a car, can trigger an alarm. People, animals, sunlight, and temperatures can't affect the sensor, making it less prone to false alarms than other driveway sensors.

Learn more about the different types of driveway alarms in our FAQ section.

Milton's Bells

The Milton's Bells Driveway Signal Bell Kit (about $152) is decidedly low-tech but is one of the most affordable ways to add a rubber hose driveway sensor to your pavement. It comes with a 50-foot hose, but you can use hoses up to 300 feet long. The bell plugs into a standard outlet and isn't weatherproof, so this is something you need to install close to your garage or shop. Still, its simple, practical design makes it a reliable option, especially in loud environments.

Key features

  • Detection range: 50 ft. (expandable to 300 ft.)
  • Receiver range: Requires wired connection
  • Sensor limit: 1

Rodann Electronics

The Rodann Electronics (about $130) was previously our pick for the longest detection range at 50 feet, but Dakota Alert proved more powerful for around $50 less. The downside to this device is the cost. There are so few features it seems the price should be lower. (It's tough to beat Guardline's impressive features.) The unit has solid customer reviews, but other less-expensive options provide far more features and reliability.

Key features

  • Detection range: 50 ft.
  • Receiver range: 2,000 ft.
  • Sensor limit: Up to 12

Seco-Larm

The Seco-Larm Enforcer (about $50) was the first photoelectric beam sensor we ran across in our research. While we like the general design, it doesn't come with an alarm to tell you when someone's coming up the drive. Instead, you need to connect it to an external siren or buzzer. Like Milton's Bells, it requires a wired power source, making installation more complicated than it's worth for a typical homeowner.

Key features

  • Detection range: 35 ft.
  • Receiver range: Requires wired connection
  • Sensor limit: 1

Wuloo

The Wuloo Solar Driveway Alarm (about $75 for a two-pack) is a more affordable solar option than eMACROS. We like that it can detect objects up to 33 feet away and has four levels of motion sensitivity like Guardline. Unfortunately, its wireless range is only 1,800 feet—about 800 feet shorter than eMACROS' half-mile range. Still, the Wuloo wireless driveway alarm  is a solid alternative if you don't need the range.

Key features

  • Detection range: 33 ft.
  • Receiver range: 1,800 ft.
  • Sensor limit: Up to 8

Final word

Even though Guardline isn't the most affordable driveway alarm system, it includes many thoughtful features like unique alarm tones, an excellent wireless range, and support for up to 16 sensors.

When paired with other outdoor security equipment like security lights, outdoor cameras, and other affordable motion sensors, driveway sensors can keep you aware of what's happening at your home, whether you're there or not.

Driveway sensor FAQ

Is there a driveway alarm that alerts your phone?

YoLink and eMACROS make driveways alarms with mobile apps. We recommend YoLink but not eMACROS. While there aren't many smart driveway alarms, we anticipate more growth in the future.

How does a wireless driveway sensor work?

Driveway alarm systems have two main parts: a sensor and a receiver. When the sensor detects movement, it signals the receiver to sound an alarm or chime, so you'll know when someone's coming down your driveway before they're in your yard. This can help folks who live in homes with long driveways.

Sensors may use different methods to detect vehicles—and sometimes people—but they're not much more than an automatic doorbell for cars. You can use driveway sensors as standalone units or occasionally as part of a larger security system.

Here are the four types of residential driveway alarms in order of prevalence:

  • Passive infrared (PIR) driveway sensors use similar technology to a typical motion sensor. They sense movement by observing the infrared light (heat) coming from vehicles and are the most common type of driveway alarm. (All of our top picks use passive infrared sensors.)
  • Magnetic probe sensors react only to metal, making them less prone to false alarms triggered by pets or kids playing in the driveway. However, a magnetic probe motion detector is expensive, and you need to bury it beside the driveway for the best results.
  • Photoelectric beam sensors use a beam of infrared light—like the laser security systems in heist movies—but are realistic. When an object blocks the sensors, you'll get an alert from the sensor. (Unlike standard PIR sensors, which detect new infrared light, photoelectric beam sensors look for interruptions in a light source.)
  • Rubber hose sensors are identical to those at a professional garage or drive-thru. It's nothing more than an enclosed tube running across the pavement. When a car or heavy vehicle drives over the hose, the change in air pressure triggers the sensor.

There are two distances to keep in mind when talking about how far a driveway alarm works:

  • Detection range is how far a sensor can see a vehicle—it depends on the type of sensor:
    • Passive infrared motion sensors typically have a detection range of up to 40 feet.
    • Magnetic probe sensors have a detection range of up to 15 feet.
    • The maximum detection range on a photoelectric beam reaches upwards of 300 feet.
    • A rubber hose driveway sensor's detection range depends on the length of the hose, with many models supporting up to 150 feet of hose.
  • Wireless range is how far you can place a sensor from a receiver and still allow signals to activate an alarm. Depending on the brand and physical obstructions like walls and trees, the receiver range can be as short as 300 feet and as long as 5,280 feet (1 mile).

Yes, it depends on the sensor type, but driveway sensors can pick up activities from people or animals. If you're concerned about home invaders, package thieves, or other threats, install a security camera in tandem with your driveway sensor.

It depends on your driveway. If your home borders a busy road, moving the sensor closer to your home is best to avoid a false alarm from traffic. Sensors for longer driveways may be best halfway between your home and the beginning of your driveway.

Quick example

If you live in a rural area, you may have a driveway that looks more like a road than a private path. Putting a driveway sensor right at the front would result in too many alarms; after all, people often get lost and use driveways to turn around.

But if you put a driveway sensor about halfway down your drive, you'll know when someone is coming to your home.

Driveway sensors do little more than let you know someone is approaching your home. However, this serves as your home security system's first line of defense. Many driveway sensors can connect to other 12-volt devices and use those to link to your security system.

Imagine if someone triggers your driveway sensor, activating your outdoor security camera. It would begin recording long before that person ever stepped within range.

Ring home security sells an outdoor motion sensor that can work like a driveway sensor. It detects motion 15 feet away.

No, SimpliSafe does not sell a driveway alarm. SimpliSafe motion detectors aren't waterproof, so they're for indoor use only.

How we reviewed the best driveway alarms and sensors

In our best driveway alarms and sensors review, we researched over 23 devices, read hundreds of customer reviews, and used our decades’ worth of safe experience to bring you the best products.

Check out our methodology to learn more about how we review products and services.

Contributing writer: Katie McEntire

Related articles


Disclaimers

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. Safewise.com utilizes paid Amazon links.

Certain content that appears on this site comes from Amazon. This content is provided "as is" and is subject to change or removal at any time.

†Google, Google Nest, Google Assistant, and other related marks are trademarks of Google LLC.

John Carlsen
Written by
John Carlsen
John is a technology journalist specializing in smart home devices, security cameras, and home security systems. He has over nine years of experience researching, testing, and reviewing the latest tech—he was the Smart Home Editor for Top Ten Reviews and wrote for ASecureLife before joining SafeWise as a Staff Writer in 2020. John holds a Bachelor's degree in Communications, Journalism emphasis from Utah Valley University. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, photography, cooking, and starting countless DIY projects he has yet to complete.

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