Eve Home released the original Eve Water Guard back in February 2020 and now the company is back with a Thread enabled version. This release follows on Eve’s drive to update most of its smart home line up to support HomeKit over Thread.
A water leak sensor may not be the first HomeKit accessory that you would think of for your smart home. But the Eve Water Guard could be a device that saves you from water damage and the cost of repairs.
Eve Water guard review – Key features
- Available in the UK, US, AU, EU and Canada
- Works via Bluetooth Low Energy
- New – Thread
- New – Alerts if the cable has been dislodged or damaged.
- Hub: No hub required (HomePod mini or Apple TV 4K required for Thread)
- Smart Home: HomeKit exclusive, but may support Matter later in 2022
- Mains supplied
- 100db alarm
- Visual alert light
- In the box: Eve Water Guard, Interchangeable plug adapters (EU, UK, US, AU) and 200 cm sensor cable.
For full transparency, Eve provided the device sample for review purposes. This will not influence the outcome of the review, you will get the good and bad. Read more about our review promise and ethics statement for more information on our approach.
So continue to read this Eve Water Guard review to find out if this is the right option for you.
Eve Water Guard design
The Eve Water Guard is identical to the previous generation, which comprises a square white sensor unit that measures 2.6 by 2.6 by 1.8 inches. The front of the device features a recessed square and behind that is the siren.
Moving to the back of the device is where you find the LED ring that flashes red when the device detects water and slot that connects the supplied power socket adapters with US, CA, AU, EU and UK adapters supplied. One small improvement over the previous version, which I called out in the previous version review. Eve has altered the design, so when the UK adapter is attached, the Eve Water Guard is orientated the correct way up.
On the bottom of the device you find the sensor cable input plug, reset button and the HomeKit setup code.
Finally, the Eve Water Guard comes with a 2 meter sensor cable that plugs into a socket on the bottom of the device. At the end of the cable is a female aux port allowing the cable to be extended up to 150 meters. The cable features a nylon outer layer with the electrical element inside.
Eve Water guard install
Installing the Eve Water Guard is straightforward and involves very few steps. You first attach the relevant power socket adapter and in my case is the UK version. Once the Eve Water guard powers up, the device should flash. You then need to open up the Home app on your iOS device and add the accessory. You do by tapping the + sign and then add accessory. Then, start the pairing process by scanning the HomeKit code and following the instructions.
The last step is to insert the sensor cable into the socket on the Eve Water Guard, and then you are ready to go.
The setup process took less than 10 minutes from opening the box to having it installed. Of course, depending on the installation process, it might take a little more time if you consider moving an appliance, for instance.
Eve Water Guard in use
The Eve Water Guard is designed to work with the Eve App and HomeKit. So for completeness, I will give you an overview of my experience of using it with both apps along with the differences between Thread and Bluetooth.
As with the previous generation, Eve design the Water Guard with one purpose and that is to detect leaking water. So within the Eve App, the information is clear and presented well. If the app shows “safe” status, no water is detected. But if it detects water you will see “Alert” and you guessed it, water has probably you may have a water leak.
You also get an option to check the log of the Eve Water Guard to look at past events. Which is useful if you want to look back and hopefully you will not be doing this often.
In the settings, you can carry out a water leak test to see if everything works correctly. I did this when I first setup the device. You can also schedule reminders to give you a prompt to test the device. The water test is a fully guided process and completed in a matter of minutes.
Another new feature is an alert if the Water Guard detects a problem with the cable. So if it accidentally got dislodged, then you get an alert in the Eve app.
As with other Eve products, the Eve Water Guard only works with Apple HomeKit. The Water Guard is shown as a water detector in the Home App and will push a notification if the device detects water. Although you cannot mute the siren like you can in the Eve app or access the device logs.
It also allows you to create scenes or automations that trigger if it detects water. Which is useful if the Eve Water Guard might not be visible if it’s behind a unit. So you can use automations to trigger lights in your home.
It is also worth pointing out for those wondering that Eve does not expose the light and siren to HomeKit.
As with the previous Eve Water Guard review, I was not willing to flood my house to test this device. But I simulated some tests in the kitchen, which involved placing the cable on my sink draining board and pouring 150ml of water down the board.
After the water came into contact with any part of the sensor cable. The Eve Water Guard flashed red and activated siren. I also got alerts to my iPhone via the Home and Eve App. It is also worth pointing out that only about 35ml was needed to trigger the activation.
Although the alerts come through via both Apps, you only best operating the device from the Eve App as you get a prompt to turn off the siren. Which is useful given how loud the thing is and this option is not available in the Home App. You to clear the alert you simply dry the cable and the status will change from “Alert” to “safe.” You can also remove the cable from the unit and this will stop the siren and change the status to “Safe.”
While that test involved pouring the water on the cable, a common leak is a “Spring leak” which products a mist spray. While it seems harmless, it will eventually build up and cause a lot of damage. So simulating this, I used a spray to soak the area around the cable with 150ml of water.
Although the reaction time was not as instant as the first test, it reacted very quickly and only by using 10ml of water. Which is more than enough time to catch this type of leak and prevent any serious damage.
HomeKit over Thread
The major upgrade for the Eve Water Guard is to bring Thread capabilities. However, it is worth pointing out I didn’t experience any dropouts or delays when testing the previous generation for its review. But looking back on this, this may have been down to the number of HomePod’s I had in my home, which helped with the Bluetooth connection.
So in this part of the review, I will compare the Bluetooth vs Thread performance for both range and response times. But In order to use Thread capabilities, you need a HomePod Mini or the New Apple TV 4K at the time of this review.
Thread vs Bluetooth tests
My first test for the Eve Water Guard involved testing response times and for this, I placed both devices side by side. I then dipped both cables into a bowl of water and both sirens and app notifications started at the same time.
My next test for the review was about Thread vs Bluetooth range performance. For this test I placed both versions in my garage and turned off all my Home hubs off apart from one located in my kitchen. The distance between the HomePod mini in the kitchen and the garage is about 20 meters with 2 external walls, 3 internal walls and several appliances.
This is where the Thread version performed better, as the Bluetooth version went to no response.
This takes me onto the next benefit,the Eve Water Guard also acts as a Thread router in the network. This means that this device can help expand the Thread network and help with devices like the Eve Weather that may need that extra range if placed in a garden.
Eve Water Guard Review summary
As with the previous generation, the Eve Water Guard enters a market that has several other options, like the Aqara Water leak sensor, that I also reviewed. While you can use both devices for the same purpose, they have a different approach to how they detect water. So this comes down to personal preference, which approach you want to go with.
But in my view, the Eve Water Guard is better suited to a larger area because of the cable approach. Plus, the fact you can extend the cable to 150m means you can use one device to cover an entire room in one solution, but that would get very expensive quickly. But that being said you do need a spare socket and this might not make the Eve Water Guard the first choice if those are limited. Whereas with the puck style devices, you can place these in locations without having to worry about that.
I would have also liked to have seen the updated Eve Water Guard come with power pass-through. But I can see why Eve didn’t include this because of the number of appliances with different power ratings. Which would push up the cost for a device that already commands a high price.
The sensitive to water is also a big plus for this device and it should catch leaks very quickly and prevent any further costly damage to your home.
I like Eve are following on its commitment to support Thread and it can be used a Thread node. This means that this device can help expand the Thread network and help with devices like the Eve Weather that may need that extra range if placed in a garden.
However, owners of the previous generation maybe question why Eve can’t release a firmware update. Well, this is down to the fact that the older generation does not have the hardware inside to support Thread.
Should I upgrade?
If you already own the previous generation and have no issue with Bluetooth performance and range. Then the Eve Water Guard with Thread support is a small upgrade. But if you dont then this is an option to consider.
You can buy the Eve Water Guard from Amazon priced at £89.99/$89.99.