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Feb 05, 2022

How to Reset a Motion Sensor Light That's Stuck

Motion sensor lights are an integral part of any residential or commercial security system. These lights are designed to turn on when the sensor detects something – or someone – moving around in the area. As you can imagine, the sensitivity of the sensor is crucial here. If it is too sensitive, the lights will come on every time a bird flies by. If the sensor is not sensitive enough, then it might not detect people walking up to the porch. So, it might become necessary to reset the motion sensor every once in a while. This is exactly what we will go over in this article. If you prefer to have electricians take care of the lighting installation, then call Mr. Electric of Houston to speak with a friendly representative and schedule an appointment.

Have You Tried Turning It Off and On Again?

Power surges and other disruptive electrical events can throw your motion sensor lights out of whack. Before you shell out cash for a new sensor or lightbulb, let’s try an age-old method: powering the unit off and back on again.


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First make sure the circuit breaker is on. Head to your electric panel and check the respective circuit breaker. If it is off, then turn it on. If it is on, then turn it off for 30 seconds before turning it back on again. Next, find the fixture’s light switch and turn it off for 5 seconds then turn it back on again.

Now, test to see if the issue is resolved. If not, then let’s check the settings.

Check Your Settings

Motion sensor lights typically have unique settings to adjust range and sensitivity. If the sensitivity is too high, then even a leaf falling may trigger the lights. A low sensitivity setting, meanwhile, requires large movements to turn on the lights. If the motion detector is facing a busy street, for example, you may want to lower the sensitivity.

Another setting to check is the duration, or length of time the light stays on. Some motion sensor lights will allow the light to remain on for up to 30 minutes. Combined with high sensitivity, this can give you the impression that the lights are never turning off. Turning the notch down on the duration setting can do wonders.

Replace the Parts

If the previous troubleshooting tips don’t work, then you may be dealing with a broken or malfunctioning part. This might be a faulty sensor, bad bulb, or damaged wiring. Changing the light bulb is something you can do quickly on your own, and you may be able to reliably change the sensor too, but you might want to leave electrical wiring work to qualified electricians.

Call an Electrician

If you prefer to leave this work to a qualified electrician, then feel free to call Mr. Electric of Houston. Our live representatives are happy to schedule a flexible appointment, and our dedicated electricians are prepared to dispatch to your location in as soon as within the hour. We are ready when you are.


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