Why Buy an IR Beam Sensor?
An IR beam sensor uses a photoelectric receiver and an infrared beam to create a simple motion detection system. When someone walks through the beam, the sensor sets off an alarm, alerting you to an intrusion. While not as sophisticated as a full security system, an IR motion sensor is cost effective and can protect a home, business or an outdoor space.
Models like the System Sensor BEAM1224, the Optex USA BX-100PLUS and the Dakota Alert BBT-2500 offer a variety of features with different detection ranges that are suitable for indoor and outdoor use. While all IR beam sensors provide the same basic functions, some have different features that make them an appropriate fit for different purposes. Knowing what you want allows you to pick the right one for your needs.
IR Beam Sensors: What to Look For
You might need an infrared beam sensor for home security, outdoor motion detection or to protect a small are, such as a door or large window. The following features can help you choose the right infrared security system for your needs.
Number of Beams
Most IR beam sensors come with one to three beams. More infrared beams allow you to protect a larger area or create a taller beam that is harder to bypass without detection. However, multiple-beam sensors cost more than single-beam sensors, and you might not need the additional coverage. If you need a full infrared security system, then you may want to look into a multibeam option. Otherwise, a single beam will probably work.
Power options are important, especially if you have to install the infrared beam sensor outside. Because power options vary from lithium-ion batteries to solar panels and basic wall outlet plugs, you can choose an option that fits your space. One consideration is that if you are in an area where the power frequently goes out, or you need to protect an industrial or a construction site, you may want a battery-powered option.
Indoor or Outdoor
While most outdoor models can work indoors with no problems, the opposite is not true. Outdoor sensors must be waterproof and resistant to snow, frost and mist. They should also be able to automatically adjust their sensitivity. For this reason, it is important to ensure that your infrared light detector is suitable for its intended purpose and location.
Depending on the IR beam sensor, you might be able to protect an area varying from a few feet to several hundred feet. If you want to protect an entryway or a garage door, then a 16-20 foot range is more than enough. On the other hand, if you are setting up a security system around a construction site, you need something that can cover as much distance as possible so that you can protect the entire site without buying more sensors.
Depending on where you want to use the IR beam sensor, you might need several different features. Deciding in advance and checking your space allows you to pick the right sensor for your needs.