CNET Smart Home
Which flood sensors are worth your money?We break down the options in each price category.
[MUSIC] Winter is coming and with it are coming a lot of potential hazards for homeowners and renters a like. We're talking broken pipes, floods and potentially thousands of dollars worth of damage. But some companies think there's one simple device that can save you that money, a flood sensor. So let's break up our options into their price categories. First, you have the $80 luxury Honeywell Lyric leak and freeze detector. it's gonna cost you 80 bucks because it has temperature sensors, humidity sensors, it works with WiFi. So you don't need a smart home hub to use it, and it's got a nice loud audible alarm. It also has a cable that you can attach to it to extend its sensing range. The problem is even with all those features, $80 is really expensive for this kind of gadget. Plus, it's not waterproof, so if the flooding is substantial, it could be just a one use product. I don't really like that at all. When it comes to midrange flood detectors, there are two big ones. The D-Links wi-fi water sensor is really cool, because it plugs directly into the wall, negating the need for batteries. And like the Honeywell, it has a cable to extend its range, and it works with wi-fi. Of course, because I plugged into the wall, if the power goes out, you're kind of out of luck. The other mid-range option, if you do have a smart home hub like SmartThings or Linq, it's a Fibaro flood sensor. It's a feature rich device that's definitely worth checking out. If you do have a smart home hub though, then you do have a couple of options that are pretty reasonably priced. The AeroTech and [UNKNOWN] spring sensors, have wired probes, which kind of limits them to just monitoring sump pumps or particular drain. In the end, Aotec gets the nod for having a slightly lower price tag of 35 bucks. For more general sensors, you've got the Fortress Z and the Smart Things flood sensors. And both of those are really easy to install. But they don't have a lot of distinguishing features. But I prefer the Smart Things detector, because it has a slightly lower price tag of $40, and it has a design that brings any water that It contacts it towards the probes, which kind of extends its range a little bit. When you're looking for the perfect flood sensor, the sheer number of options can be kind of overwhelming. The trick is to know what your price range is, and know that whatever you get, it'll at least be a positive step toward avoiding some of that flood damage.