Motion-Sensing LED Lights: A Review

Motion-sensing LED lights — these lights are perhaps the most efficient lighting devices available today. They switch on whenever their infra-red sensors detect movement in a room — such as when someone begins to walk down a dark hallway. I’ve been testing them in my own home, and I’ve found them to be effective and non-obtrusive. At night, I’m able to go down two floors to the basement, without turning on any lights. The motion-sensing LEDs in the ceilings switch on as I move about the house.

Philips SpotOn LED Motion Sensing Light

Philips SpotOn LED Motion Sensing Light

They illuminate with a soft, bluish light – it’s enough light to easily see where you are going. After 20 seconds they turn off automatically. The lights I have in the ceilings are Philips SpotOn LED Lights. They run on three AAA batteries, you can use rechargeable batteries of course (I recommend using hybrid rechargeables because they keep their charge for many months). They cost around $17 each from Amazon.

I installed them using the adhesive tape that comes with the light. The battery cover is held by four small magnets. Once you attached it to the wall or ceiling, you do not have to unscrew anything to replace batteries. You can just gently lift the top and easily put it back. Magnets are strong enough to hold the unit in place.

I also use some similar lights called PIR 6 LED Motion Sensors, they are very similar to the Philips SpotOns. You can set these lights to turn off at 30,60 or 90 seconds, according to your preference.

Maxxima Occupancy Sensor LED Light

In my bathroom I have a Maxxima Occupancy Sensor Light. I like this light because it has frosted window, and it gives off a nice diffuse glow. These $17 lights have built-in motion sensors like the Philips lights. They run on three AA batteries. You can stand them on top of cabinets or put them on countertops. They are intelligent enough to only turn on at night (and only when they sense motion in the room). They turn off automatically after 30 seconds. They can also be set to turn on at night only, be left on at all times, or be shut off completely

These lights also be plugged into AC or DC power. Because they are portable, you can take them with you when you go camping.

Maxxima 5 LED Motion Sensor Light

Maxxima 5 LED Motion Sensor Light

This Maxxima 5 LED Sensor Light is similar to the one I described above, but it is brighter and it does not have a frosted window, so the light more intense. These ones are good for placing in garages or basements.

Maxxima 18 LED Occupancy Sensor Light

Maxxima 18 LED Occupancy Sensor Light

This large motion-sensing LED light from Maxxima, is the brightest I’ve tested. It has 18 LEDs that produce 69 lumens, but it runs on just four AA batteries. It’s also weather-resistant so it can be used outside. The stand is magnetic, and also has 4 screw holes for wall mounting. The stand itself is a swivel stand so you can position the light wherever you wish. It’s available from Amazon for around $40.

Comments 6

  1. I got it up and running, one of my gruonds wasn’t secured turns out. I was having issues with the disc drive when making it transparent. You don’t happen to know the name of the contraption that is on the´╗┐ inside of the disc drive that holds the disc when the mount pops up and tries to put the disc hole into the nub the piece above the disc that holds it in place.

  2. I’ve picked up a couple of LED motion sensing lights that work great in our dark hallway. From Amazon, they’re Solar Eclipse 10 LED Motion Sensor Light. Attached to the ceiling, they come on when you’re in the doorways of adjacent rooms, and fill the hallway with light. Three rechargable AA batteries last over one month in our busy hallway. Two pack saves you on shipping (I’d bought them one at a time in case they were lousy, ended up spending a little more in shipping, but it’s worth it). Now I just have to find a good Solar LED battery charger!

  3. We use several motion-sensing light switches to control two sections of our basement; one turns on a couple CFLs, another a standard double fluorescent tube overhead light. The CFL works great, but the regular tubes take a while to come on. Also, there’s no adjustment of sensitivity or duration on the light sensors, and I needed to replace our normal light switch; not hard by any means, but requires a minimal amount of electrical skills. These LEDs sound better; the battery is a great idea.

    We also have a light-sensing LED nightlight in our upstairs bathroom (uses less than 1 watt when on, turns off when the sun rises), which is great so our sleepy kids can avoid falling down the stairs adjacent to the bathroom.

    It turns out to be plenty of light for me in most cases (brushing teeth, showering, etc.). LED is not “pretty” light (yet) but it is very effective for these kinds of uses.


    I can’t find it. AC/DC version better?

    How much you forget to turn lights off
    How much power wasted 24/7 on the sensor + the extra on time (since they stay on X min after last trigger.)

  5. What a great idea. I’ve been looking for some motion-sensing lights to install in my walk-in closet and pantry so we can stop worrying about accidentally leaving the lights on in there. CFLs are apparently not suited for motion-sensing light switches, so I didn’t know where to turn. These look quite promising.

  6. This is a great review. I’m certainly keen on replacing my current lighting, and so long as I can justify it (i’m a tenant in a rented house).

    And, lets face it, as well as being environmentally sound, motion sensors are just a cool thing to have in the house.

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