Smart plugs make it simple to integrate regular appliances into a smart-home system. These affordable gadgets give “dumb” appliances a range of smart settings. Smart plugs provide the freedom to remotely turn appliances on and off, set schedules and timers, enable voice controls, and integrate with other smart devices—all through a smartphone app or voice assistant device.
While the best outdoor smart plugs have useful smart functions plus a sturdy, weatherproof build designed for outdoor use, there are many options on the market. Keep reading to learn more about the important features, and consider transforming your patio or backyard into a smart outdoor space with one of the following outdoor smart plug options.
- BEST OVERALL: Kasa Smart Outdoor Smart Plug
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: WYZE Outdoor Smart Plug
- BEST SINGLE OUTLET: Geeni Indoor/Outdoor Smart Plug
- BEST POWER STRIP: POWRUI Outdoor Smart Plug, Surge Protector
- BEST FOR OUTDOOR LIGHTING: TREATLIFE Smart Dimmer Outdoor Plug
- MOST VERSATILE: meross Outdoor Smart Plug
- ALSO CONSIDER: BN-LINK Smart WiFi Heavy Duty Outdoor Outlet
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Outdoor Smart Plug
Many smart plugs on the market are made for indoor use and aren’t weather resistant, so look for a plug that is rated for outdoor use when shopping for a smart plug for your patio or backyard. When choosing an outdoor smart plug, also consider its size, number of outlets, durability, connectivity settings, and device compatibility.
Size and Number of Outlets
Outdoor smart plugs tend to be larger than indoor versions due to their protective weatherproof design. Depending on their size, which can be as small as about 2 by 2 inches, they may cover other outlets. If this is a concern, consider a smart plug that includes additional outlets. Plugs can include anywhere from one to four outlets on one smart plug, essentially turning the smart plug into a power bank for outdoor appliances.
The outlets also can be integrated or independent. Integrated units treat all the outlets as one unit, so the settings created for one outlet apply to all the others on the same smart plug. Independent outlets are much more flexible. These models allow for different settings for each outlet on one smart plug.
Not all outdoor smart plugs are compatible with all smart-home systems or voice assistants. A variety of options are compatible with popular voice systems like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant command centers. Fewer outdoor smart plugs are compatible with Apple HomeKit and Samsung SmartThings systems. To avoid any disappointment, it’s important to choose a smart plug that is compatible with your system.
Many users who would consider buying a smart plug may have an up-to-date smartphone. It’s also prudent to check that your phone system is compatible with the smart plug’s app, which may have certain system requirements to install.
Safety is incredibly important when it comes to outdoor electronics. The best outdoor smart plugs are designed to withstand weather. Most outdoor smart plugs are designed with their outlets facing downward to prevent water and dust from settling inside. A durable outer cover also helps protect it from the elements, and most plugs include outlet covers to cover the outlets when not in use.
Look for outdoor smart plugs with a water-resistant and dust-resistant rating of IP44 or higher. IP64-rated outdoor smart plugs are another common option. A higher rating is more protective. The IP rating is a measure of ingress protection against solids and liquids. Choose an appropriate rating based on the outlet location.
- IP44 smart plugs are protected from dust and solid particles larger than 1 millimeter in size and can handle water spray from any direction.
- IP64 smart plugs are completely dust tight and also can handle water spray from any direction.
Some outdoor smart plugs have Wi-Fi capabilities built in, while others need to connect to a smart hub. Those with built-in connectivity tend to be more simple and straightforward to install. These models are popular and have fewer bits and pieces. However, smart plugs that connect to a smart hub can make it easier to connect multiple smart devices. Regardless of the connectivity type, both options will have remote settings to control the smart plug from anywhere with an internet connection.
Outdoor smart plugs with built-in Wi-Fi connectivity often have a range of about 300 feet. For most homes, this is enough to connect to an indoor router. Also pay attention to the Wi-Fi band compatibility; some outdoor smart plugs are only compatible with the 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi band and not the 5 GHz band.
Automation and Setup
Outdoor smart plugs are generally simple to set up via a smartphone app. Before plugging in a device or appliance, also consider the smart plug’s power limitations if connecting to high-wattage items. Most smart plugs will be able to handle lighting and small appliances, but some won’t be able to handle high-wattage appliances.
Once the smart plug is connected, users can use the corresponding app or voice commands to control devices or set up schedules, monitor settings, or integrate the appliance into smart-home systems and other devices in the home.
A neat automation feature that some smart plugs include is IFTTT (If This Then That) functionality. This feature allows users to set up chain reactions between smart devices. Users can create smart “scenes” or routines triggered by an action or a voice assistant phrase: for example, switching on an outdoor light if the smart doorbell rings.
Our Top Picks
An outdoor smart plug can make it more convenient to manage a range of outdoor devices, such as controlling outdoor lighting, scheduling pool pumps, or monitoring outdoor appliances. The best outdoor smart plugs are functional, durable, safe, and make it easy to integrate outdoor spaces into your home’s smart system. Below are some of the best options on the market.
The Kasa Smart Outdoor Smart Plug by TP Link is a convenient pick for upgrading outdoor electronics. This smart plug has two individually controlled outlets with a range of smart features.
Using the Kasa app, users can control devices remotely, set countdown timers, schedule an away mode setting, and set schedules, including automatic on/off settings according to sunrise and sunset times. IFTTT functions also are available to create preset scenes with other Kasa devices.
The weather-resistant build has an IP64 rating, and it has a Wi-Fi connectivity range of 300 feet. Setup is simple with this WiFi-enabled smart plug—there’s no hub needed and the plug is compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for hands-free control.
Smart home integrations don’t need to come with a hefty price tag, and this outdoor smart plug from WYZE is a stellar example. This affordable smart plug features two outlets and includes many features of pricier plugs, including remote control, schedule creation, and voice control through Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. The outlets offer independent control for added flexibility.
This WiFi-enabled smart plug is a breeze to install. It can connect to Wi-Fi routers up to 300 feet away to bring smart features to patio and backyard outlets for an affordable price.
To save on the electric bill, this outdoor smart plug also has an energy monitor that allows users to view historical energy usage and set consumption alerts in the WYZE app. The IP64 build is weather resistant and is safe to use in areas that are exposed to dust, dirt, rain, and snow.
Smart plugs with dual outlets can be bulky to use. For those who need only a single outlet, consider this smaller outdoor smart plug from Geeni.
The simple smart plug is easy to operate; there’s no hub to set up. The plug just needs to be inserted into an outlet and connected to Wi-Fi (on a 2.4-GHz band) and the Geeni app. With a weather-resistant cover, this outdoor smart plug is a suitable pick for all-weather use.
Once it’s connected, users can control devices and set schedules via a smartphone or using voice controls through Microsoft Cortana, Amazon Alexa, or Google Assistant.
To control up to four devices at once, reach for this outdoor smart power strip from POWRUI. This smart plug features four individually controlled outlets, each on their own cord for flexible positioning.
Using the smartphone app, Amazon Alexa, or Google Assistant voice controls, users can switch appliances on and off, as well as set schedules and timers. The smart plug is WiFi-enabled and connects to the 2.4-GHz band. This means there’s no hub required, making it simple to connect several appliances into a smart system with only one basic setup.
To keep devices and appliances protected, this plug includes a built-in surge protector. The weather-resistant housing is IP44-rated to handle inclement weather.
Controlling outdoor lighting is a breeze with this smart dimmer plug from TREATLIFE. This outdoor smart plug features many of the useful controls of other smart plugs. The IP44-rated unit is WiFi-enabled and is compatible with 2.4-GHz Wi-Fi networks. Once it’s connected, users can control lighting and other devices by using the TREATLIFE App or voice controls through Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.
Functions include remote control, schedule creation, and timer settings. However, where this smart plug shines is with outdoor lighting. The smart dimmer feature allows users to control dimmer lights using the smartphone app or voice controls. Users can choose a lighting setting between 1 and 100 percent brightness to set the lighting mood.The dimmer also supports a sunrise and sunset mode, which programs the smart plug to switch lights on or off at dawn and dusk.
Many households have a range of smart devices under one roof. For those looking for better device compatibility, consider this outdoor smart plug from meross. The smart plug is compatible with a variety of voice assistants, including Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, and Samsung SmartThings. The wider compatibility makes this unit an excellent pick for homes with several voice assistant devices.
The smart plug also is easily controlled from the meross smartphone app. Made for outdoor use, this smart plug has a rating of IP44 and is WiFi-enabled for easy connection to the 2.4-GHz Wi-Fi band. The two individually controlled outlets help users to remotely control, schedule, or set timers for connected devices.
This heavy-duty smart plug features three grounded outlets to control a range of outdoor appliances. Using the BN-LINK app, Amazon Alexa, or Google Assistant, users can control electronics remotely, schedule settings, or set a countdown timer. Best of all, there’s no hub required to take advantage of this smart plug; it is WiFi-enabled and compatible with the 2.4-GHz Wi-Fi band.
The outlets on this smart plug are not individually controlled, which cuts back on the device’s flexibility. However, it makes it simpler to control synchronized outdoor lighting or appliances: for example, switching off a holiday lighting display. The weatherproof IP44-rated body makes this plug ideal for both indoor and outdoor use.
FAQs About Outdoor Smart Plugs
Smart plugs make it simple and affordable to turn existing devices into smart devices. Take the convenience of a smart plug outdoors with one of the best outdoor smart plugs. To get started using your new outdoor smart plug, consider the answers to the following frequently asked questions.
Q. What can I control with a smart plug?
Smart plugs can be used to switch on, schedule, or monitor a range of different devices and appliances, from coffee makers and televisions to smart sprinklers and outdoor lighting.
Q. How long will my outdoor smart plug last?
Outdoor smart plugs can last several years with proper maintenance, which includes covering the outlets when not in use and avoiding exposure to excessive dust and water.
Q. Do smart plugs slow down Wi-Fi?
Smart plugs alone don’t tend to have a large bandwidth requirement and are unlikely to slow down Wi-Fi speeds. However, if the smart plug is part of a large smart home system with several devices, it is possible for these systems to affect Wi-Fi speeds.
Q. How many devices can I plug into my outdoor smart plug?
It depends on the number of outlets included in the outdoor smart plug. Most outdoor smart plugs have one to four outlets.