Wiring & Connecting the Hardware: Wiring Glass Break Sensors

Most wired glass-break detectors, regardless of type, will work with the Smart Home Alarms Panel. Most common glass-break sensors work exactly like motion detectors, and can be wired in the same way. They require 2 wires (black/red) for power and 2 wires for a normally closed (NC) signal loop.

Wire glass-break detectors just like any other sensor: Connect one member of the signal pair to an input pin on the Smart Home Alarms Panel, and the other to GND. Leave the black/red power pair (if any) connected to the AUX terminals of youralarm panel, or the 12V U1 / GND pins if not using an alarm panel for power.

1. Setting up Glass-Break sensors in SmartThings

SmartThings Smart Home Monitor does not support a device type for glass-break sensors specifically. However, since they work the same as any other sensor, you can set them up as Motion Sensors or Open/Close Sensors instead, and they will work with Smart Home Monitor. You can always change the icon of the device after you create it by tapping on the gear icon on the device detail screen in the SmartThings app.

2. Acoustic type Glass-Break sensors

Acoustic glass-break sensors are good for protecting a whole room full of windows. They’re usually mounted on the wall or ceiling of the room. They work by responding to the sound of broken glass.

Testing these sensors is not as straightforward as other types of sensors, because they are only supposed to trigger by the sound of an impact followed by broken glass. Professional alarm installers use a portable electronic glass-break simulator, but these are expensive and impractical for the do-it-yourselfer. Instead, you can use a key chain of metal keys, or a glass jar full of coins. To trigger the sensor, simultaneously create a thud sound by pounding the wall/ceiling while jingling the keys/coins as close as possible to the sensor. This YouTube video has a good demonstration.

3. Shock type Glass-Break sensors

Shock type sensors stick on to a pane of glass, and they alarm if the glass is broken or disturbed.

4. Foil tape

Foil tape can adhere on to any glass surface to create a conductive loop. The tape easily breaks if the glass is broken,interrupting the signal loop and triggering an alarm.

Next Step

Wiring a Relay