LoRa Mailbox Notifications

LoRa Mailbox Notifications

I bought this awesome device that sends me notifications whenever we get a new letter or package in our mailbox.

I bought it from the creator's online store:

MailBox Guard Wireless IR Sensor

The design is also open source and available on GitHub:

GitHub - PricelessToolkit/MailBoxGuard: Lora Long Range Mailbox Sensor for Smart Homes or for Standalone use
Lora Long Range Mailbox Sensor for Smart Homes or for Standalone use - PricelessToolkit/MailBoxGuard

They included STLs for a 3D printed case. I also designed a custom mailbox flap with embedded magnets. The flap opens whenever a letter is pushed into the mailbox. This triggers a reed switch that turns on the Mailbox Guard and sends a notification to the receiver.


Sensor case and custom mailbox flap

I bought this LILYGO TTGO LoRa32 board to receive messages and send them to Home Assistant via MQTT.

39.45NZ$ 10% OFF|LILYGO® TTGO LoRa32 V2.1 1.6.1 ESP32 LoRa 433MHz 868MHz 915MHz Development Board 0.96 Inch OLED TF Card BLE WIFI Wireless Module
Smarter Shopping, Better Living! Aliexpress.com

I 3D printed a case for the receiver: TTGO Lora32 T3 Slimline Case on Printables


It turns out that most of our mailbox notifications are flyers and leaflets, and sometimes the wind. I will probably turn off the real-time notifications and just show the status on a dashboard somewhere.

I've noticed that LoRa is more reliable than some of my Zigbee devices, and has a much longer range. I might try designing some of my own LoRa devices in the future.

Future Ideas

I would like to add a second reed switch on the main door of the mailbox, so that I can automatically reset the count to zero whenever we take the letters out of the mailbox. But I don't know if this is possible due to the design of the board.

I would also like to add some LoRa transmitters to our cars, so that I can automatically open and close our garage doors. I've already set this up with the Home Assistant mobile app for home presence detection, but sometimes there's a delay, or my wife is driving my car (or vice versa.)