Phyn is finally getting around to addressing one of the few criticisms I had of its Phyn Plus smart water valve when I reviewed it back mid 2019: You can now buy a remote device—the Phyn Smart Water Sensor—that will instantly detect water collecting in places where it shouldn’t.
The Phyn Smart Water Sensor will trigger the smart valve (if you have one) to shut off your main water supply to prevent catastrophic water damage. The $40 sensor can also work independent of the valve—i.e., you don’t need to deploy both products—and will notify you of a potential leak via your smartphone either way.
Phyn’s number-one competitor, Flo by Moen, introduced a discrete leak sensor in the summer of 2020. Like the new Phyn Smart Water Sensor, the Flo by Moen Smart Water Detector can operate independently or in concert with the Flo by Moen Smart Water Shutoff to prevent water damage.
Phyn’s 3.5-inch sensor operates on battery power and connects to your home Wi-Fi network. It can be placed on the floor or, with the addition of a $10 extension node or a $26 4-foot sensor cable, hung on a wall. The add-on extension and cable accessories increase the area that the sensor can monitor for water and also enable the sensor to be used in tight-fitting spaces.
Up to three of the extension cables can be daisy-chained to increase the sensor length to 12 feet. Water coming into contact with any part of the cable will trigger an alarm. If water is detected, the Phyn Smart Water Sensor will send you an alert via SMS or push message to the Phyn app. The device will also sound an onboard alarm and flash a set of LEDs on the device itself, so you can take action.
If you also own a Phyn Plus, these alerts will instruct the smart valve to close to prevent any additional water from leaking (although the system can’t do anything to stop a ruptured water heater tank—nothing can). Phyn’s new product will also monitor ambient temperature and humidity levels, which can alert you to conditions that might lead to frozen pipes as well as when mold could become a threat.
The Phyn Smart Water Sensor ($39.99), Extension Node ($9.99), and Sensor Cable ($25.99) are available now at Phyn.com, Amazon, Best Buy, and Home Depot. Best Buy will have an exclusive on a sensor two-pack for $74.99 later this spring, and a $99.99 three-pack will soon be available everywhere.
We’ll post a full review as soon as we can get a unit for evaluation.