The Best
Driveway Sensors and Alarms

You’ve got locks, cameras and alarms on your doors and windows to protect your home and family, but what about your driveway? All too often homeowners forget to take the proper precautions in their driveway that could significantly improve their home’s security.

Driveway alarms are more advanced and offer more options than ever these days. They can help monitor your property and alert you to any unwanted visitors before they ever make it to your house. Those with long driveways may especially benefit from driveway monitors and alarms.

Our favorite 5 driveway alarms

 Guardline Outdoor Chamberlain CWA2000 Mighty Mule Dakota Alert DCMA-2500 Hosmart Rechargable Alarm
Detection Range40 feet30 feet12 feet300 feet30 feet
Transmission RangeUp to 500 feetUp to 1/2 mileUp to 400 feetUp to 1/2 mileUp to ¼ mile
Designed To DetectAll motionAll motionCars and other vehiclesAll motionAll motion
Type of SensorPassive InfraredPassive InfraredElectromagneticPassive InfraredPassive infrared

The Guardline Outdoor Motion Alert Driveway Alarm

This system from Guardline is a solid driveway alarm for most driveways. It gets high marks from customers for being easy-to-install, reliable and relatively affordable. This driveway alarm offers significant detection and transmission ranges, and it comes with a two-year warranty as well as technical support if you should need it.

It offers quite a few options for personalization as well, allowing you to program up to four different zones with up to four sensors in each. When it comes to the alerts, you can choose one of 30 different tones, and the volume is adjustable. Overall, most customers say they’re happy with their purchase and feel that it adds to their home’s security.

  • Detection range: 40 feet
  • Transmission range:  Up to 500 feet
  • Sensor style: PIR
  • Power source: The sensor requires 4 AA batteries; the receiver runs on a 12V adapter (4 AAA batteries are required for backup)

Guardline 500 Foot Range Wireless Driveway Alarm [1 Motion Detector Alarm Sensor & 1 Receiver] Weatherproof Outdoor Security Alert System for Home & Property
  • Security - Feel a sense of safety around your home with our weatherproof perimeter alarm set. It's sensitive to heat and motion during the...
  • Easy To Install: Ordinarily, the installation of the equipment by a technician is the most costly part of a home security system, but this...
  • Long Range - With 1 motion sensor and 1 receiver, each driveway sensor also has a wireless range of up to 500 feet for plenty of coverage...
  • Compatibility - This motion detector alarm unit runs at 915 MHz. If you are expanding your Guardline wireless alarm system, please make sure...
  • Customizable - Regardless of the size of your home and property, you can configure this system of motion detectors with a motion alarm...

The Chamberlain Wireless Motion Alert System

This system from Chamberlain costs significantly less than most other driveway monitors we reviewed, but it offers much of the same functionality. While its detection range is about 10 feet less than the Guardline system, its transmission range is significantly higher (up to 2,640 feet as opposed to 500 feet), so it may be good for those with large properties. Note, however, that range is under ideal circumstances, so if there are trees and other items in between, it likely won’t transmit that far.

Most customers give it high marks for dependability, effectiveness and range. However, some say it doesn’t hold up well in rain or snow.

  • Detection range: 30 feet
  • Transmission range: Up to ½ mile (2,640 feet)
  • Sensor style: PIR
  • Power source: Base runs on AC adaptor (included) or 4 AA batteries; sensor requires 4 AA batteries.

Chamberlain Group CWA2000 Chamberlain Driveway Alert, Black
  • Set includes one base receiver and one sensor (ability to additional CWPIR sensors sold separately)
  • Passive infrared (PIR) sensor is weatherproof and detects motion up to 30 feet away and features adjustable sensitivity
  • Base receiver detects signals from sensors up to a 1/2 mile away (in ideal situations)
  • Unique sound and light pattern on the base unit identifies which sensor has been triggered
  • Easy to install, no wiring required. Base units uses AA batteries or included AC adapter; Note: Check user manual in technical specification...

The Mighty Mule Wireless Driveway Alarm

If you don’t want to be alerted every time a child chases a ball into your driveway or a dog wanders across it, then this system from Mighty Mule is a solid choice for detecting cars and cars only. You bury the sensor wand next to your driveway and it will detect moving metal within a 3-12 foot range.

Those in rural areas with long driveways and lots of deer and other animals may prefer this system to PIR driveway monitors. One note: If your driveway is very long, the transmission range on this alarm may not be long enough.

  • Detection range: Up to 12 feet
  • Transmission range: Up to 400 feet
  • Sensor style: Electromagnetic
  • Power source: Requires 2 AA batteries

Mighty Mule FM231 Wireless Driveway Alarm, Motion Alarms for Cars with Long Range Base Station, Weatherproof Driveway Alert, Ignores Animals and People
  • Receive instant notifications through the base driveway alarm system, ensuring immediate alerts whenever someone enters or exits your...
  • Our outdoor electromagnetic safety sensor exclusively detects vehicles, eliminating false alarms triggered by animals, children, and other...
  • Easy-to-install Electromagnetic Driveway Sensor Alarm Wand is buried next to your driveway and detects mass metal moving within a 3-12 ft....
  • When a vehicle passes by the outdoor motion sensor alarm, an outdoor transmitter communicates wirelessly to an internal base station up to...
  • Perfect solution for both home and business security. Seamlessly integrate with the Mighty Mule gate opener (not required) and other Mighty...

Dakota Alert BBA-2500 Break Beam Alert Kit

To cover a long driveway, customers say this system from Dakota Alert is hard to beat. While it’s more expensive than other driveway monitors we reviewed, many say it’s worth it for its durability and dependability.

An infrared beam runs between two sensors, which can be placed up to 300 feet apart. If anything breaks that beam, an alert is sent to the receiver. The sensors run on lithium batteries that are recharged by the sun, so there are no batteries to replace, and you can add more sensors as well. The receiver can be programmed to alert you with one of four tones, and the volume can be controlled.

  • Detection range: 300 feet
  • Transmission range: Up to ½ mile (2,640 feet)
  • Sensor style: PIR
  • Power source: Solar batteries

Dakota Alert BBA-2500 Break Beam Alert Kit, One BBT-2500 & One DCR-2500
  • RELIABLE & RANGE- Dakota Alert has been in business for over 25 years with a proven record of reliability and dependability for all our...
  • INSTALLATION – Easy do-it-yourself installation. Mount the beam sensors on posts outside and then plug the receiver into an outlet in the...
  • RECIEVER – Four tones to choose from; Classical, Westminster, Ding-Dong or Whistle. Volume control, also a 12 VDC output and relay output.
  • BEAM SENSORS --Solar powered and can be mounted up to 300' apart. Sends a signal to the receiver anytime the beam is broken. Weatherproof...
  • LIVE CUSTOMER SUPPORT – If you have any questions or concerns, Dakota Alert has friendly and knowledgeable staff to help.

Hosmart Rechargeable Driveway Alarm

This low-priced driveway alarm gets high marks from hundreds of satisfied online customers. Its transmission and detection ranges are about average, but you can adjust the sensitivity of the sensor based on how much area you actually want to cover.

Some report that the sensor batteries don’t last long, and charging them can be inconvenient as you have to take me out to do so. Overall, though, most who have purchased this system say it’s solid, reliable and a good value for the price.

  • Detection range: 30 feet
  • Transmission range: Up to ¼ mile (1,320 feet)
  • Sensor style: PIR
  • Power source:  Receiver runs on AC adapter or (4) AAA batteries; sensor runs on rechargeable 18650 Li-battery.

1/2 Mile Hosmart Driveway Alarm Wireless Sensor System & Driveway Sensor Alert System Weatherproof Security Outdoor Motion Sensor & Detector
  • HOSMART ADVANTAGE-30 years+ outdoor driveway alarm wireless driveway alert system produced in our own factory with our leading edge systems...
  • EASY TO INSTALL- Quick Start Guide has you operational in minutes. Can expandable up to 4 sensors and unlimited receivers for complete...
  • SUPER LONG RECEIVING RANGE - 1/2 mile (in ideal situations). Our range is double the 1/4 mile competitors claim under ideal conditions. We...
  • EXCELLENT QUALITY - Outdoor driveway alert sensor system is made with industrial grade PVC housing, rubberized weather/water resistant seal,...
  • EXTREMELY RELIABLE - Much time went into developing and testing our reliable InfraRed outdoor driveway alarm wireless detector that will...

How a driveway alarm works

Driveway alarms use motion sensors to detect someone’s (or something’s) presence, then send you an alert, so that you can check out what’s going on out there. A sensor is placed in your driveway to detect motion, and a receiver is placed in your home so you can hear the alert if it’s triggered. Both come in a variety of styles with various capabilities. Two of the most significant features to consider are the detection range (how much area a sensor covers) and the transmission range (how far about the sensor and receiver can be placed apart and still work).

The sensors use two primary kinds of detection technology for home driveway security:

Passive infrared (PIR): These sensors sense motion based on heat and movement. They detect most movement, including that of humans and animals. Most people tend to go with a PIR sensor alarm for their driveway since it provides greater protection.

Electromagnetic or probe: These sensors only detect metal, so while you’ll be notified of cars coming up your driveway, you won’t get notified every time a stray dog does.

Final thoughts

Once in awhile unannounced visitors at your front door are welcome surprises, but more often than not, knowing when someone unexpected is coming up your driveway provides peace of mind. Driveway alarms are a simple and relatively low-cost way to get that peace of mind and help keep your family safe and sound. Luckily there are many different types available at different price points, so determine exactly what you need for your space and match it with your budget to find the ideal driveway alarm for your home.

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About the Author

Julie Ryan EvansJulie Ryan Evans
Julie Ryan Evans is a writer and editor who has worked with a host of diverse companies including Microsoft, USA Today,, Brit + Co, CafeMom and SheKnows, among others. She has a master’s degree in nonfiction writing from The Johns Hopkins University and regularly covers topics including health and wellness, parenting, technology, finance, real estate and pop culture. While she currently calls the Orlando area home, she has lived everywhere from Hawaii to Austin, Boston and beyond.