Author Topic: Motion Sensor Batteries  (Read 3836 times)

Dave Mc

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Motion Sensor Batteries
« on: October 24, 2013, 12:38:52 PM »
Has anyone tried using lithium batteries in place of alkaline AAA batteries in motion sensors?  I have 3 MS14A sensors located outside and have to get on a ladder to change the batteries.  The alkaline batteries usually last a little over a year, but I would like to stretch that out further if possible.

dave w

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Re: Motion Sensor Batteries
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2013, 02:37:52 PM »
Have not tried lithiums but they should give you about 60-70% more service, and will hold up better in cold weather. If you have enough room to do this, I hot glued "D" size battery holder on the back of several of my outdoor X10 "Active eyes" motion sensors and have gotten two years of service using some cheap alkaline batteries.

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062241
http://www.allelectronics.com/make-a-store/item/BH-142/BATTERY-HOLDER-2-D-CELLS/1.html
This after shave makes me look fat.

Dave Mc

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Re: Motion Sensor Batteries
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2013, 03:37:09 PM »
Using the larger batteries is a good idea, but it would not look so good on the wall.  I think I will stick with the AAA size.  The biggest problem I have with changing the batteries is trying to see the little red light on top of the sensor for the re-programing.  If it is bright outside when I do this, I will take the cardboard from a roll of paper towels and hold one end up to the light and look through the other end.  This works pretty well, but is kind of awkward when standing on a ladder.  I have thought of making a bracket to fit on the back of the sensor that can then attach to the wall.  That would allow me to change the batteries and re-program while I am standing on the ground then just take the sensor back up to mount it.  I need to think about this some more.

Thanks for the suggestion and links to the battery holders.

Brian H

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Re: Motion Sensor Batteries
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2013, 03:44:00 AM »
One thing to keep in mind.
If you create a mounting system.
Motion sensors mounted on metal. Frequently where know to have problems. Like much shorter RF range back to the X10 receiver.

Dave Mc

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Re: Motion Sensor Batteries
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2013, 01:53:47 PM »
Brian H - Thanks for the advise on using a metal mount.  You saved me some time.

I have decided that I will try some lithium AAA batteries.  About a year ago I added a wireless motion sensor to my security system.  The motion sensor uses one lithium battery CR123A, that is supposed to last around 9 years.  The sensor has a "high traffic" feature that shuts down the sensor for 3 minutes after it detects motion and has sent the RF signal.  If there is additional motion detected while it is shut down it will send an additional RF signal once the 3 minutes have lapsed.  So if there was continuous motion it would send a signal every 3 minutes.  I don't know what the expected battery life would be without this feature, but I would guess it would still be at least a few years depending on the amount of traffic.  I don't know how qty 2 AAA batteries in an X10 sensor will compare with qty 1 CR123A in this other sensor, but I am going to find out.

Brian H

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Re: Motion Sensor Batteries
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2013, 03:15:54 PM »
From some specifications sheets for a CR132. It is a 3 volt battery and depending on the manufacturers sheets I found. 1300 mAh or 1400 mAh.
As for AAA Lithium Cells. 1.5 volt so two would be again 3 volts. Energizer charts where not to clear, but looked like 1300 mAh.
X10 motion sensors send an Off after around a one minute timeout of no detected motion.
The Eagle Eye could have some parameters set to different times.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2013, 03:22:45 PM by Brian H »

skywalker

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Re: Motion Sensor Batteries
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2014, 09:51:52 AM »
The Lithium batteries DO perform much better in cold weather.  I switched from alkaline to Lithium a couple of years ago and have never looked back.  They cost more, but they save me a lot of headaches when the temp drops in my Eagle Eyes as well as wireless outdoor temp probes.   I change the batteries about once per year on average.  Cheers.