Fire might be a homeowner’s greatest fear, but any insurance company will tell you that water is the far more common cause of property damage, even if you don’t live in an area subject to flooding. And it can come from many sources: A failing water heater, a burst pipe, a broken supply line under your sink, a clogged toilet, or even a split hose connected to your washing machine.
Just as it’s essential to have a smoke detector in each of your home’s bedrooms and common areas, you’d be wise to install leak detectors in places where water damage could start: The laundry room, water heater closet, the bathroom, under your kitchen sink, and so on. Leak alerts are arguably less important for renters, but it’s something landlords might want to consider—although that raises the issue of how the sensors would connect to the internet. More on that later.
If you think a leak sensor is something your home should have, here are our top picks. If you want more information on this topic and want to read more reviews, scroll down a bit.
Updated July 9, 2021 to add our Phyn Smart Water Sensor review. Phyn’s device bests the similar Flo by Moen Smart Water detector by a nose to become our top pick in this category. Phyn’s device costs $10 less because its sensor extension cable (which you might not need) is optional, but we also appreciate the industrial design that protects Phyn’s sensor from water dripping from above, and we think the Phyn Plus smart water valve is the better product in its category. The Phyn sensor also runs on ordinary AA batteries, where the Flo by Moen product requires a pricier CR123 lithium cell.