The Clapper Review

The Clapper
Bottom Line

The Pitch: "Clap on! Clap off!"

April 2009. The Clapper has been around for ages, and everyone can chant along with the infomercial, "Clap on! Clap off! Clap on, clap off, the Clapper!" And while the Clapper -- a plug-in on/off switch that is sound-activated -- is about as easy to use as its slogan implies, most users say that it works a bit too well. The Clapper has a tendency to activate at even the slightest noise, causing the lights or any other appliances plugged into it to constantly turn on and off. Due to this noise sensitivity, many reviewers deem the Clapper impractical for everyday use. Other complaints are that it doesn't work with lights that use fluorescent bulbs, and some users have even had the Clapper cause an electrical short in their home.

Those with mobility problems like the Clapper, as it gives them the ability to turn the lights on and off by making any kind of noise. Some also like using it with switches that are hard to reach, primarily Christmas tree lights.

  • Easy to install
  • Works for a variety of appliances
  • Good for those with mobility problems
  • Overly sensitive to all sounds
  • Doesn't work with fluorescent bulbs
  • Bulky

A reporter for KCBD in Lubbock, Tex., tries out the Clapper and finds it too be much too sensitive to all noises for him to continue using it. Customer reviews on echo the noise sensitivity complaint, but a few like its ease of use for loved ones who can't move around easily. Customer reviews on and for the Clapper are mostly negative, with a handful of positive comments on using the Clapper for out of reach switches or keeping young children entertained.

Our Sources

1. KCBD (Lubbock, TX)

The Clapper: Does it Work?, Editors of KCBD, Dec. 25, 2002

A KCBD employee puts the Clapper to the test and finds that it does work, for the most part. He tries the Clapper on a lamp and a TV, and it works to turn the lamp on and off, but it will only turn the TV off, presumably because the TV is a newer model. He does find the Clapper to be a bit too sensitive, as sometimes just snapping or speaking is enough to activate it. It works pretty well, but due to the noise sensitivity issue, he won't be continuing to use the Clapper.


The Clapper Sound Activated On/Off Switch, Contributors to

More than 80 customers review the Clapper on, and about half are disappointed, while the other half like the Clapper, but only for specific situations. There's an almost unanimous agreement that it is too sensitive to be used regularly. But those with mobility problems like the Clapper, and others like using it on infrequently used appliances, like Christmas tree lights. In addition to the sensitivity issue, another common complaint is that the Clapper doesn't seem to work on lights that use fluorescent bulbs. A handful of reviewers call the Clapper a "fire hazard," saying that it has shorted out and started smoking when used in their homes.


The Clapper Reviews and Ratings, Contributors to

More than 15 customers review the Clapper on, and most do not recommend the product. The same complaints of being overly sensitive to all noises and occasionally causing electrical shorts are echoed here. Of the handful who like the Clapper, most like it as a source of entertainment for their young children, as they can turn the lights on and off with the slightest noise.


The Clapper The Sound Activated On/Off Switch, Contributors to

A handful of customers review the Clapper on, and most agree that it isn't good for everyday use since any noise activates it. A few like to use it for out of reach switches, like Christmas tree lights or bedside lamps, but the overall consensus is that the Clapper is impractical for the primarily used lights in their home.

Elsewhere in This Report