When I think home automation …. I picture a futuristic scene in some space movie. I walk to a door, it unlocks automatically, it picks up some sensor on my body, adjusts temperatures in the room, and then sends the sex robots. Although we’re quite not there, we can stand to have some additional comforts in our life. Welcome in the Mailbox sensor.
Items you will need:
For this to work (in the way I am showing you) you will need the following.
Amazon affiliate links to the items used –
- Alarm Panel – Qolsys ( with the installers code )
- Wireless Sensor ( Door / Window contact )
- Double stick tape or ( 3M 4475 Glue )
Installation is pretty easy and essentially takes no tools. Make sure you have your contact in place where it will allow the door to close and still make contact. I applied a little 4475 glue to each and pressed them against their surfaces for a couple of minutes. Once dried its not going anywhere. In this situation I used an indoor contact ( what was available to me ). Ideally you will want an outdoor version or add some sealant to the contact itself. I’m not too worried about it.
NOTE: Adding a sensor to a panel will vary from panel to panel. The instructions here are only for the IQ2 Panel from Qolsys.
Step the first: Locate your panel and swipe down the middle drop down.
Step 2: Go into your advanced settings option and add your installers code
Step 3: Auto Learn Sensor ( Installation > Devices > Security Sensors > Auto Learn Sensor ) – Once you’re here you’re going to want to tamper the contact ( open the contact and hit the tamper button, or just press the magnet to the contact and remove it )
Step 4 : Selecting Settings – Things to note – Sensor Group 25, Sensor Name – Named it Mailbox, Voice Prompt is off, Chime type I have it set to High Wire but you could opt out if you choose.
Alarm.com – Push notification
Essentially you’ve added the door/window contact, or in this case the mail box contact, to the alarm panel. If someone opens the mailbox it will chime inside. If you set the voice prompts it will say MAILBOX. If you want to take it a step further you can really step up the “automation” with alarm.com.
Login to your alarm.com account. Head over to Notifications. Once in Notifications click +New Notification.
Click on Sensor Activity
Finalize your sensor Details: Make sure you select the name of your mailbox sensor ( in my example its Mailbox ) – During this time I selected at all times ( I want to know when someone opens my mailbox ), Notification Filtering I set to 5 minute ( I dont want to receive 200 messages about my mail box. So if it happens within 5 minutes don’t send me another notification. Either way I’m going to check the instant it pops ). Finally, if you add yourself as a push notification it will send you a message to your phone alerting you that someone has opened your mailbox.
Why did I use these items?
I used the qolsys panel as it was already available to me as well as the PG9303(Brown). I purchased a tube of 4475 Glue years ago and it’s still going strong.
Why should YOU use these items?
Qolsys is a great way to incorporate home automation, security, and lighting control into one unit. Their PowerG frequency allows up to 1 mile (line of sight) for their wireless range. The ability to put something at the very front of my house ( as a mail box ), have it communicate wireless and secure was extremely appealing to me.