Pros / The Halo+ can warn you about severe weather and natural disasters.
Cons / It has a short warranty period compared to the rest of the smoke detectors we reviewed.
Verdict / The Halo+ is a great choice if you want to integrate your smoke detectors into your smart home. Its flaws are small, and it has many benefits.
The Halo+ is a top-notch smart smoke detector that can integrate with a few smart home systems. It’s easy to install, set up and use. Also, it performed well, though not perfectly, in our detection tests and alerts you if there are dangerous levels of carbon monoxide. It also displays weather alerts, something no other smoke detector we reviewed does, that warn you about severe weather and natural disasters in your area. The company could offer a longer warranty, but that’s a minor complaint.
The Halo+ is the only smoke alarm we reviewed with both photoelectric and ionization sensors for detecting slow- and fast-burning fires respectively. It also monitors your home for carbon monoxide, which is especially dangerous because it’s invisible and odorless. We like that it checks local weather alerts and can warn you about tornadoes, hurricanes and winter storms, so you can get to safety. No other smoke detector we reviewed monitors the weather like this.
The Halo mobile app is available in the iOS App Store and Google Play; you can use the app to control, monitor and test your smoke detector from anywhere you have an internet connection. When there’s an emergency while you’re away from your home, you receive notifications on your mobile device in real time.
In addition to sounding a tone alarm, the Halo+ gives you voice prompts that let you know what kind of danger it detected and where it is in your home. This is very convenient because it allows you to control the situation quickly. The Halo+ does its level best to avoid false alarms, but if the alarm does sound in a non-dangerous situation, you can use the app to silence it. This is great because you don’t have to grab a stool or step ladder to hush an ear-piercing alarm.
We ran every smoke detector in our comparison through a battery of tests. Once installed, we sprayed test smoke from an aerosol can toward the device and timed how long it took to sound the alarm. We repeated this test 5, 10 and 15 feet away from the detector. The Halo+ detected smoke sprayed from 5 feet in 23 seconds, which is the longest time we recorded at that distance. At 10 feet, it took 31 seconds to trip the alarm, and at 15 feet, it failed to detect our test smoke at all, only the Nest Protect detected smoke from that distance. Overall, this is one of the best-performing smoke detectors we tested.
As we tested smoke detectors, we noted how easy each was to install, set up and use. We found that the Halo+ is one of the easier devices to work with. If you follow the instructions closely, installation is a breeze, and it only takes a few seconds to connect the device to Wi-Fi. In addition, the Halo mobile app is quite intuitive. Only one other smoke detector, the Nest Protect, was easier to use than the Halo+. Because it’s hardwired into your home’s electrical grid and has a backup battery, you will probably never hear a low-battery chirp. In case of a power outage, you can track the battery life from the mobile app.
This detector is compatible with a few popular smart home systems. You can integrate the Halo+ with networks such as Iris and SmartThings, two of the most popular home automation systems. You can even connect it to Amazon Alexa and control it with your voice making it the only smoke alarm we tested with this feature.
You can expect the Halo+ to work for 10 years, which is typical for the smoke detectors we evaluated. However, the warranty only lasts three years. Some smoke alarms are under warranty for their entire expected life. If Halo did the same, it would provide reassurance about the longevity and durability of its product.