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How to install a PIR motion sensor

Updated April 17, 2017

A Passive Infrared (PIR) motion detector sensor senses occupants in any given room and sends a signal to the modular room control system. The system consists of a contact door device and a room controller to determine if there are occupants in the room. This capability can provide enhanced security and energy conservation, aiding in the overall business or household operation. Installing a PIR motion detector system may require a mechanical and electrical background.

Disconnect the power supply. Position the motion detector on a wall in a corner as close to the ceiling as possible. Mount the motion sensor with a Phillip's head screwdriver and mounting screws. Use an Allen key (L-shaped ruler) to assess the 90-degree horizontal and 45-degree vertical angular specifications to meet the unit's field view. Place the motion detector at a downward angle to maximise room coverage.

Remove the motion detector cover. Make a hole in the top part of the plastic cover with a power drill, then feed the conductor wire through it. Secure the motion detector on the wall by pushing two mounting screws through the pre-drilled holes. Tighten the mounting screws with a Phillip's head screwdriver.

Strip the insulation from the four-conductor and 24-gauge cable with wire strippers. The cable will run from the motion detector location to the modular room control thermostat. Turn the four screws on the motion detector's terminal strip in a counterclockwise fashion to open them for the wire acceptance. Maintain a 4-inch minimum of cable slack on the motion detector's end for ease of future maintenance.

Connect the two leads. Connect the 12 VDC power outlet to the positive (+) and negative (-) terminals. Observe the terminal connection for polarity. Tighten the screws with a Phillip's head screwdriver, then pull down on the wires to confirm an established connection. Do not over-torque the screws. Connect the remaining pair of leads to the "C" and "NC" terminals. Tighten the screws, then pull down on the wires to confirm an established connection. Do not over-torque the screws.

Check the on-board LED for flashing functionality. Re-install the motion detector cover. Reconnect the power supply. Conduct a walk-through test to determine if the motion detector functions optimally. Look for the LED to flash and for an alarm to sound within three to four steps of entering the field view.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillip's head screwdriver
  • Mounting screws
  • Allen key
  • Power drill
  • Wire strippers
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About the Author

David Gaines began writing professionally in 2010 for various websites including laminate construction companies, wholesale furniture companies, blog operators and sole proprietors needing promotional advertisements. Mr. Gaines attends Hillsborough Community College and is currently working towards an Associate of Arts in liberal arts. He plans on eventually obtaining a Bachelor of Arts in English.