One of the most common fears people have with swimming pools is the fear that it could be a hazard for children, animals, or even grown-ups who fall in but don’t know how to swim. This fear can nag at you constantly throughout the day.
That’s where a pool alarm comes in handy. Whether you simply want to keep uninvited guests away, or want a precautionary measure for kids and pets, a good alarm system can go a long way in ensuring safety. The system can also give you peace of mind – albeit a bit loud – as you continue with your daily tasks.
Pool alarms come in many shapes, sizes, and ranges, not to mention the price points, so choosing the best pool alarm for your swimming pool can be a tough decision.
What should you look for when buying a pool alarm? How do they work? In this article, we’ll answer all these questions and more, along with reviewing some of the best pool alarms you can get in 2020.
We are writing this to help you pick the one you think resolves your particular problems. Don’t forget to read our buyer’s guide to know what to look out for when making a decision!
At a Glance: Our Picks for the Best Pool Alarm
- Lifebuoy Pool Alarm System with Motion Sensor
- Techko S187D Safe Pool Alarm
- PoolGuard PGRM-2 In-Ground Pool Alarm
- Safety Turtle 2.0
- Poolguard DAPT-2 Water Hazard
- Pool Alarm Electronic Monitoring System
Here Are the Best Pool Alarms for 2020
Let’s review some of our best pool alarm picks for 2020 to give you an idea of what you’ll be getting against your investment.
If you’re looking for an alarm system that covers the entire surface area of your pool and goes off whenever a child or pet falls in, you simply can’t go wrong with the lifebuoy pool alarm system with a motion sensor. It’s shaped like a cone and floats around your pool with the cone side down. This revolutionary bit of technology could very well be the best pool alarm money can buy!
- Dimensions: 7.2 x 5.9 x 5.9 inches
- Weight: 1.3 pounds
- 1 Lithium Metal battery (included with the purchase)
- Color: Red base with a transparent cone
- 97 dB
- Bluetooth app
- Range: 200 ft
- Swim Mode: Via the Bluetooth app, you can turn on the swim mode, which disables the alarm while the motion sensor keeps running. The alarm automatically primes after sensing 10 minutes of inactivity in the water.
- Cover Alert: The alarm also goes off when the pool cover is removed.
- Easy configuration: From the Bluetooth app, you can easily tweak settings such as sensitivity and alarm length, among others.
- Alarms can be switched off with the Bluetooth app
- One unit is enough for a large pool
- Automatically detects pool boundaries
- Instructions can be confusing, despite the fact that it is easy to use
The lifebuoy pool alarm system is well worth the investment. One of the best things about this pool alarm is the fact that this can be turned off easily via the Bluetooth app, meaning you don’t have to go out every time your dog decides to drink water from the pool to turn it off – you can do it from your kitchen.
Customers have, however, complained that the instruction manual included within can be confusing. Some have also complained that the system goes off in the water for no reason, but that was fixed by fine-tuning the sensitivity settings.
The Techko Group has been manufacturing and retailing many UL certified solar, security, robotic products, and office equipment all over the world for a long while. One of its most successful pool alarms is the S187D, a battery-powered alarm system fit for any pool area doors or windows. Following are some features the Techko S187D boasts.
- Dimensions: 4.8 x 1.6 x 1.8 inches
- Battery: 1.9V batteries
- Weight: 6.6 ounces
- Release date: Oct 6, 2010
- Color: Light grey
- Cost-effective – just under $20
- Meets UL standards
- High output alarm system – 110-120 dB
- 6-Tone Alarm
- Always-on alarm
- Good battery life (2160 hours)
- Easy installation – has a double adhesive tape on the backside or you can screw it in place
- Can only cover 1 door or window per unit
- Despite the good battery life, batteries need replacement after 3 months
- The adhesive tape might not stick due to increased humidity levels in indoor pools
- No warranty
The Techko S187D safe pool alarm has been around for over 10 years and still is considered among the best pool alarms, both in terms of price and features. If you have an indoor pool with only one or two doors or windows, this pool alarm could be the best one for you.
However, for pools with numerous entryways, spending $20 on each entryway might end up getting costly. As for outdoor pools, these alarms offer limited to no protection, since anyone can climb the wall or fence to reach your pool.
PoolGuard is yet another pool accessory provider that offers a wide variety of pool products and equipment. One of the more popular pool alarms from PoolGuard is the NSF certified PGRM-2 in-ground pool alarm. From the finish to its function, the alarm shows off its build quality and reliability in every sense of the word.
- Dimensions: 14.5 x 4 x 12.8 inches (L-shaped)
- Weight: 5 pounds
- Battery: 1.9V batteries
- Range: 200 ft (20 x 40 or 800 square feet pools)
- 85 dB horn
- UV protected – can work with or without solar covers
- Seamless design – sits perfectly at your pool’s corners
- 3-year warranty
- Can work in bad weather conditions as well – can differentiate between rain, wind, and accidental falls
- Has a low-battery indicator
- You can adjust sensitivity when needed
- Prone to water damage if submerged
This state-of-the-art pool alarm can differentiate between an actual intrusion and weather effects, effectively reducing the number of false alarms you get. This is enough to reduce inconvenience considerably and make it a prime candidate for one of the best pool alarms of 2020. The 3-year warranty is the icing on top of the cake that is its quality.
However, many customers have complained that the system is prone to water damage, so be careful about insulating it.
This adorable wristband is an easy-to-use pool alarm for your children or pets, blaring loudly when in contact with water. It sounds only when submerged, and when flicked with water, it doesn’t go off. The green turtles are also attractive for children, meaning they won’t have the urge to remove it that often – however, that is a definite possibility.
- Dimensions: 5.1 x 9.6 x 2.1 inches
- Weight: 13.6 ounces
- Color: Green and black
- Range: 200 ft
- Batteries: 2 CR2 batteries (non-replaceable)
- 98.7 dB
- Wearable for children and can be attached to pet collars
- Portable – has a long range of 200ft from the receiver, which can be carried with you on a vacation
- Long battery life (3-5 years, depending on usage)
- Requires a plastic key to take off
- Alarm can be turned off from a button on the receiver
- No programming needed
- Irreplaceable batteries
- One unit per child or pet
- Can be removed with a little force – older children can easily find a way
For people who have cookouts or BBQs frequently, you simply can’t go wrong with the Safety Turtle 2.0. You can focus on grilling your chicken while the children play about worry-free. The turtles shout louder than you’d think looking at them, alerting everyone out there about the water hazard.
Their portability also offers extreme utility, making them a good choice for people who travel a lot.
However, they can get extremely expensive if you want one for every child or pet near your pool.
Another UL listed pool alarm for you to consider is PoolGuard’s DAPT-2 water hazard alarm. It has a wireless transmitter that sounds-off loudly when a child or pet passes through a door without pressing its bypass button. Its features and specifications include;
- Dimensions: 4.5 x 2.8 x 1.5 inches
- Weight: 6.4 ounces
- Range: 7 feet
- Battery: 1.9V
- Color: Ceramic white
- 85 dB alarm
- Long lasting battery life; 6 months
- Loud and clear
- UL listed
- Low battery indicator
- Easy installation
- Grownup pass-through feature
- 1 year warranty
- Relatively costly
- Battery not included despite the high cost
- Might be too loud for some
- 5-7 second delay in alarm
The PoolGuard DAPT-2 is a good competitor for our best pool alarms list because of the utility it offers. However, you might want to check with your building code official to ensure that it meets your state’s requirements or not. Some states do not allow for a 7-second delay, so keep that in mind.
The alarm is very loud, which might be a nuisance for some, but that’s what it’s supposed to do – and it does so very well. However, a separate device is needed for each door, since it has a 7-feet range so be mindful of that.
Presented by SafeFamilyLife, the pool alarm electronic monitoring system is a relatively lesser known pool alarm system but it does the job impeccably. The system has an anti-tamper alarm system as well to make sure older children don’t turn it off to have a quick swim without your permission. It does the job just as well as many other brands, only more cost-effectively.
- 10 x 8 x 10 inches
- Weight: 4.5 pounds
- Range: 300 ft
- Battery: 6V (last for 12 months)
- Color: White
- 90-100 dB
- Can be controlled with a remote
- Can detect changes in water level and any intrusions
- Recommended for above-ground pools
- Long lasting battery (12 months)
- Easy installation and operation
- Relatively fragile
- Sensitivity issues for below-ground pools
If you have an above-ground pool, the pool alarm electronic monitoring system can do wonders for you, especially with its anti-tamper technology and a very loud alarm. However, people with other types of pools might not find this system up to par with their expectations, considering the price tag – albeit relatively low.
Related – The Best Above Ground Pools 2020
Buying Guide for the Best Pool Alarm System
Although we’ve listed some of the best pool alarm systems above, if you have your eyes set on another one, there are some things you should keep an eye out for in any system. Following is a quick buying guide to help you make an informed decision when going for any type of pool alarm system for your home.
First Things First: Do You Need a Pool Alarm System?
A pool alarm is an investment that might seem to be somewhat excessive and unnecessary to you, however, the government has decided differently. Some US states have decided that not having one is a health risk not only for children but also for pets. Therefore, a pool alarm with certain specifications is compulsory in many states.
So, not only does an alarm system protect you from potential mishaps, it can also protect you from lawsuits. Even if you don’t have any pets or children, there’s a chance that stray animals or neighboring children might want to fight the heat by taking a dip in your swimming pool.
A pool alarm system can give you a fair warning about any accidents before they occur.
Different Types of Pool Alarm Systems
There are many types of pool alarms out there, but you need to decide which one suits your needs best. It’s all about safety with these systems, but what do you want to protect yourself from, and which system your pool needs to give you peace of mind depends entirely on you.
If you want intruders, be it stray animals or neighbor’s children, to keep away from your swimming pool, you want an alarm that is highly sensitive, yet quiet. A loud system can give away its position, giving intruders or children to tamper with it the next time they come around.
If you’re simply looking to keep your own children away from it while you continue about your day, a loud system will serve you much better. Different types of alarm systems include;
- Pool Gate Alarm. A pool gate alarm is installed on the entrances of the pool area. These can include doors and windows. These alarms get triggered shortly after someone opens the door. However, these can be bypassed with a simple press of a button.
- Pool Immersion Alarm. The Safety Turtle wristband is an example of this type of alarm. These are usually worn by children when they are playing next to the pool or a body of water. The moment they get submerged, the base unit will get triggered.
- Sub-Surface Detection Pool Alarm. These pool alarms are set by the side of the pool with sensors dipped below the water surface. If there is any change in the water pressure or its state, the alarm gets triggered.
- Surface Wave Detection Pool Alarm. These alarm systems usually comprise of two parts; the sensor and controller. The sensor usually floats on the water or is mounted on the pool’s deck. If there are any changes in the water’s state, the waves trigger the alarm.
What the use of an alarm that you can’t hear? The whole purpose of an alarm is to alert you of any hazards from afar so that you can take precautionary measures accordingly. Therefore, you need to buy a pool alarm system that is loud enough to be heard from afar. Having said that, make sure it isn’t too loud, or it could not only damage your hearing but also be cause for inconvenience for other people.
In most states, the minimum acceptable sound level for a pool alarm system is 50-60 dB.
Determining the Type of Set Up
Installation is key when it comes to finding the best pool alarm system, and should be considered right after determining what type of alarm you need. By mode of set up, we mean finding out what type of alarm would be fit for your pool.
An alarm made for above-ground pools wouldn’t fair well in an in-ground pool and vice versa, because many factors differ in both these pools. This includes the wind conditions, motion, light, and much more.
You should get the one that fits your needs. For example, if you have an indoor pool and aren’t worried about intruders, a bracelet alarm system would be best suited for your needs.
Almost every alarm system has two devices; the sensor and the receiver (controller). The triggers are located in the sensor while the horn is located within the receiver. These devices are often wireless but have a limited range. Make sure you buy one which has adequate range – at least enough for it to be able to send signals from your outdoor pool to the indoor receiver.
Quality & Durability
At the end of the day, even the most expensive alarm systems can come crashing down if made with poor quality materials, has a poor design, or is simply not durable enough. Some of the best pool alarm systems are weather and water proof, while some are unfortunately prone to water damage.
Before buying, make sure the alarm is weather proofed to ensure your investment bears fruit for a longer period of time.
Pool Alarm Systems FAQs
Q – How does a swimming pool alarm work?
Pool alarm systems work with the help of motion or pressure sensors. When these sensors detect any changes in the condition of the water, they send out a signal to the receiver which starts blaring out its horn, usually a few seconds after the trigger.
Q – How loud does my pool alarm system have to be?
Many states in the US dictate that a pool alarm system’s horn should sound at at least 50-60 dB. However, there are also pool alarms that blare out at an astounding 100dB! The idea is to make sure that the sound of the alarm can be heard from every corner of the house.
Q – Can my pool alarm system know the difference between children, pets and waves?
Yes, most high quality pool alarms can register the difference between a wave and an intruder. However, you have to adjust the alarm’s sensitivity for that. At maximum sensitivity, the alarm will get triggered at even the slightest movements in the water, be it because of the wind or a stone thrown in.
Q – Can the sensors be disabled from the in house receiver?
With a simple button, you can disarm the outside sensors when you want to. Moreover, some of the best pool alarms also allow you to turn off or change settings of the alarm system from your phone via Bluetooth.
Having said that; we don’t recommend turning off the alarm system except for when performing maintenance or perhaps during a storm.
Finding a pool alarm that fits your and the state’s need can be difficult and seem like a daunting prospect at first. However, with a little help from the guide above and by going through our reviews, you can make an informed decision on which one would sit at home to protect your pets and family.
We have tried to present a clear picture to you about every product we reviewed and give you an idea of things to look for when buying a pool alarm system. However, at the end of the day it all comes down to your preference and decision.
Just make sure you go through our buying guide once more and re-read every review to get an idea of what you will get and what you should be expecting. A properly installed pool alarm system can help you continue with your life without having to worry about your children stumbling into the pool, while protecting you from the state’s wrath!
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Last update on 2021-01-08 at 14:05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API