Drowning is the 2nd leading cause of death in kids under the age of 14. In as little as two minutes without oxygen, a person can become unconscious. By using a pool alarm, which works by determining that the water has been disturbed, you'll have time to react in an emergency situation.
But pool alarms go farther than that. They will also alert you to unauthorized pool usage by anyone, which can be a hazard all by itself. They will give you a heads-up on errant party-goers, vandals or illegal break ins.
No pool alarm should be used as the only means to limit access to the pool. Locked gates and electronic surveillance are two other good choices, that when combined with pool alarms, give you the best possible chance to avert a tragedy. In fact, many states require alarms for both pools, gates and fences for just this purpose.
Ultimately, pool vigilance depends solely on you. Know where your kids are, know where your guests are, keep pool alarms "on" and keep gates locked and secured at all times.
The pool alarms selected for this list were chosen because they're most sensitive to artificially disturbed water, and they also give the least amount of false alarms when they are in place. Ease of installation and convenience was also considered in these selections, but price wasn't considered because you cannot put a price on safety.
The Pool Patrol PA-30 Pool Alarm floats on the top of the water and is suitable fr either in-ground or above-ground pools. It has a 200 foot remote sensing range alarm and runs on a standard 9-volt battery with adjustable sensitivity to reduce false alarms. Read Full Review
The Pool Patrol PA-30 Pool Alarm gets the top nod here because of its versatility. It will work equally well in either an in-ground or an above-ground pool. The alarm is equipped with a remote sensor that sounds both the pool alarm and the remote alarm, which can be located up to 200 feet away. It floats on top of the water, which means installation is a snap, and it reacts to any wave that is created when unauthorized pool use is in progress. It is adjustable for sensitivity, which will inhibit false alarms, and runs on one 9-volt battery.
The Aquaguard Pool Alarm System is made for in-ground pool use, has dual alarm sirens in the unit and an alarm in the remote control. It senses water pressure, not wave activity, so it has fewer false alarms than most other types. Read Full Review
If you are only looking for a pool alarm for your in-ground pool, you can't do better than the Aquaguard Pool Alarm System. It works by sensing water pressure and will sound the alarm at anything entering the pool that weighs over 18 pounds. It features dual alarms in the unit and comes with a wireless remote receiver that has its own alarm which sounds when the main unit goes off. It is one of the best alarms at identifying false signals, like wind or rain, and it will rearm itself after everyone has left the pool for the day. This is the best alarm for in-ground pools.
The SENSOR ESPIO In-Ground Swimming Pool Alarm Remote has one of the loudest alarm sounds of any unit available. It is magnetically keyed which makes it difficult to disarm, comes with a wireless remote and resets itself automatically. Read Full Review
This is considered one of the top model of pool alarms made. There is no doubt that in static testing it virtually always comes out on top, but the SENSOR ESPIO In-Ground Swimming Pool Alarm Remote in the real world isn't any better than other top choices, and it is also more expensive. That it is a fine pool alarm cannot be disputed, it has one of the loudest alarms of any unit and installs semi-hidden beneath the pool deck. It can even be permanently mounted during pool construction. The unit must be submerged about halfway into the water to be effective, it comes with a wireless remote, is magnetically keyed to make disarming it very difficult and it resets itself automatically.
The Poolguard PGRM-2 In-Ground Pool Alarm comes with a 200 foot remote unit, it is powered by a 9-volt battery and can only be deactivated by putting it into sleep mode, making it virtually tamper proof. Read Full Review
If you need a pool alarm that cannot be deactivated once it is set in place, than the Poolguard PGRM-2 In-Ground Pool Alarm is the one for you. It must be physically removed from the pool and put into sleep mode to deactivate, which means it is tamper proof even to the point of being stolen, unless you actually know how to deactivate it. It runs on a 9-volt battery, has a 200-foot remote and automatically resets when placed back into the pool. It would have scored higher on the list, but deactivation sometimes causes false alarms, and if you are trying to take a midnight swim in a suburban neighborhood, that will cause problems.
The Maytronics International Swim Alert Pool Alarm must be set up correctly to function right, and if that is done properly, it is one of the most sensitive alarms on this list. It will detect an object as little as 18 pounds entering the pool, and the alarm can be heard 100-feet away.
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One of the best pool alarms made, the Maytronics International Swim Alert Pool Alarm is highly sensitive and must be mounted correctly to eliminate false alarms. It mounts on the deck and the alarm can be heard up to 100 feet away. The immersion probe must be kept at about 8.5 inches beneath the surface of the water or you may end up with consistent false alarms. That said, when it is set up correctly, it is one of the most sensitive and reliable alarms on the list. It will sound an alarm when some object as little as 18 pounds enters the water, which makes it good for animal protection too.