For those of us without the means or desire to have a security system or renters who can’t install one. What I have found is there are ways around having to get a security system just to feel safe. The best window alarm sensors don’t cost as much as a security system. The downside is you have to monitor them yourself and listen for the alarm.

Some are loud enough that most intruders are scared off just by the initial siren when they are set off. All of them have some type of double sided tape that makes it easy to install them wherever you need them. These can go on a door or window and will work on a sliding glass patio door as well.

There are basically two ways the intruder sensors are triggered, either by vibration or magnet there are two pieces for one sensor, both have magnets and when that magnetic connection is broken the siren gets triggered.

Vibration Sensor Type

best window alarm sensors

The sensors that are triggered by vibration can be attached just about anywhere on the door or on the operable part of the window. The motion of opening the door or window will set off the vibration sensor and trigger the alarm.

Magnetic Sensor Type

Sensors that use magnet come in two parts. One part has a magnet, battery and on/off switch. The other part has another magnet. Those two parts are placed on the window or door so that when the door or window is opened, the magnets separate, lose contact and the alarm is triggered.

Personally, I like the ones that have a vibration sensor. It doesn’t matter where you put them, on the door or window, as long as they can sense the vibration of being opened. Plus, if you put them on a window, if the glass is broken the siren will go off instead of needing for the window to open. But the best window alarm sensors have both vibration and magnet triggers.

Best Window Alarm Sensors

Samsung SmartThings Multipurpose Sensor

best multipurpose window alarm sensor

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  • Requires Samsung SmartThings Hub and SmartThings app for complete functionality
  • Detects open and close, temperature, vibration, orientation and tilt for multipurpose functions
  • Works with Google, Alexa, Zigbee and SmartThings
  • Phone notifications if sensor gets triggered
  • Can be paired with smart outlets and turn on lights when a door or window is opened

Doberman Security Ultra-Slim Alarm

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  • Window vibration alert with 100 dB alarm
  • Alarms are just 2-3/4″ diameter and 1/4″ deep – can fit just about anywhere
  • Install these on windows near the frame to reduce false alarms due to strong winds
  • Alarms are small enough that they do not need to be removed to open a sliding window – just turn alarm off before opening
  • Siren lasts 30 seconds then shuts off by itself – long enough to alert you or scare away intruders
  • Batteries are included and there is a battery indicator on the device for when they are running low

GE Personal Alarm Security Kit

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  • This kit comes with 1 keypad alarm and 3 door/window sensor alarms
  • Use the keypad one at the entry door – it can be set when you leave and when you return enter your code to shut off
  • Adjustable settings – off/chime/alarm – chime is useful just if it alerts you when someone comes in a shut door
  • These alarms use magnets – one part on the door and the other on the door frame, when they get more than 1/2″ away from each other alarm is triggered
  • Comes with batteries and double sided tape – no permanent attachment for easy removal
  • Unlike vibration alarms, will not get triggered if glass is broken, but most intruders break the glass so they can open the window

Sabre Glass Break & Vibration Alarm

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  • Has a hi/lo switch so that on windy or stormy days you can set sensitivity to hi preventing false alarms
  • Low battery indicator and test button
  • Has a 115dB alert, that is louder than a jackhammer, and can be heard up to 300 feet away
  • Comes with “Protected by Sabre” stickers for your window
  • Batteries are included
  • Alarm is triggered by vibration so this will work on doors, windows, sliding glass doors or even cabinet and gates

Tritace Universal Alarm with Vibration and Magnet Sensor

best window and door alarm sensors

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  • Is both a vibration and magnet sensor – alarm goes off whether the door or window is opened regularly or forcefully
  • Comes in a pack of 5 with 15 batteries for up to 2 years of use
  • Has a high/low sensitivity setting
  • The alarm duration can be set from 30 seconds long, 60 seconds long or continuous
  • Has a 3 second alarm delay just in case you forgot and opened the door or window without turning the sensor off

Sabre Door & Window Burglar Alarm

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  • 120dB alarm can be heard up to 750 away
  • Has 3 settings – off, alarm and chime – chime is best used to alert you to children or visitors coming and going
  • Low battery test button
  • Easy installation due to the slim sensor can be mounted on either side of the alarm, most of these types of sensors can only be on one side of the alarm
  • Unlike vibration alarms, will not get triggered if glass is broken, but most intruders break the glass so they can open the window
  • Comes with batteries and double sided tape – no permanent attachment for easy removal

Those are the best window alarm sensors. They are easy to install. Piercingly loud – enough to hopefully scare off an intruder and wake you or your neighbor up. And most of them are inexpensive – many don’t cost more than $25 for a 4 pack. I would like to hear your experience with these or others in the comment section below.

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Andy · March 13, 2020 at 10:14 pm

A very impressive and thorough review. I might have ventured to install some of these myself but we went for an ADT system a few years back. I also put in my own CCTV watching the perimeter of our house but they are not hooked up to the ADT system but I am guessing serve well as an extra deterrent and of course record good pictures. One thing that has caught us out a number of times is the glass break and vibration sensor on one of the side windows will go off from loud bangs. This has happened during a thunderstorm when we are away in Europe or from the July 4th fireworks when we have also been away. So we have had the hassle of dealing with the police over the phone from Europe in the small hours of the morning. Which brings me to my question – are there any vibration sensors models for windows that would allow you to adjust the sensitivity to avoid the kinds of problems we are experiencing. Or does that just come with the territory. Thanks Andy

    Bill Kiser · March 14, 2020 at 1:21 pm

    A couple of the vibration sensors I have listed come with a high/low sensitivity switch for the exact problem you are talking about. In especially strong storms these vibration sensors will go off a lot and you’ll end up turning it off until the storm blows over. I had to do that once when a hurricane had come by and we were experiencing 60+ mile an hour winds. And I figured nobody would be out trying to break into our house during that. 

ccav66 · March 13, 2020 at 10:14 pm

My in laws are elderly and for thier birthday last year we got them the magnetic sensors for the doors. One of the best investments we made. They were easy to install and loud,my father in law joked that he did not even need his hearing aids. We want to get some for the windows also which led me to your website.Leaning toward the Sabre glass break and vibration alarm so far. 

Hamish58 · March 13, 2020 at 10:03 pm

If I am honest, I yearn for the days I experienced growing up when we all wandered in out of each other’s houses in our neighbourhood, no one locked their doors and we all felt safe and trusting.  It is perverse I think that as our society has developed and we want for less that we have become less trusting of each other and for good reason.  I acknowledge the gap between the haves and have nots is wider and widening.

While governments and social lobby groups do their best to adjust those settings, there is a sad but real and inevitable need for good security to achieve peace of mind and protection of our property and our physical well being.

You advocate some great products here to do just that.



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