Sensative strips (guard) review

2 minute read

I’ve had one Sensative strips guard installed since January 2017, and two more since October 2017, and thought it’s long past time I wrote a little about what I thought of them (if you want to skip to the end - I like them).

Form factor

Well, it’s hard to beat the form factor, particularly for uPVC frames. It fits nicely in the recesses of the frame, out of sight. The magnet sticks nicely to the door or window, and it’s easy to recess it in a wooden door. Two are mounted vertically, one is mounted horizontally, in the top of the door frame.

There’s a couple of major advantages for me with these. The first is that they’re invisible with the door or window shut. This is nice and visually clean. The second is that it’s easy to fit them to a door that’s already monitored by a commercial alarm sensor, without interfering with that sensor.

In use

They work.

What? You wanted more? 

Setup is a bit fiddly. Waking the sensor is hard - getting the right motion of the magnet, three times in a short time window, isn’t easy. I’ve had it take half a dozen attempts to get it to work.

You have to enable binary reporting, but that’s normal for most sensors. After that you can just forget about them.

Battery life

They claim up to ten years battery life. On two of the doors I’ve fitted these that looks quite likely. One of those is rarely used (once a month or so). The other is the front door, which is used about a dozen times a day on a typical day. 10 months in both are reporting 100% battery level.

The utility door though is used about twice that on a typical day. 20 months in it’s reporting a battery level of 75%. I should get between 6 and 7 years of life out of it.

That sounds bad, given that when the battery dies I have to replace the sensor. On the other hand, in 6 years we’ll be on at least 700 series Z-Wave, possibly beyond. I’ll already have upgraded my Z-Wave controller by then, and will be upgrading or have upgraded all my other devices to avoid running in legacy compatibility mode.


They’re reliable, and neat and tidy. The battery life on the busy door is falling quite short of the “up to” value, but I doubt that level of usage was in the design spec. I’ll be buying more of these as they go on sale, which should make it pretty clear that I like these quite a bit.