7 Tips For Using Outdoor Home Security Cameras

An outdoor security camera is a go-to option for many households to deter bad actors. Let alone their ability to alert and record suspicious activity; their visual appearance is enough to keep burglars at bay.

But to get the most bang for your buck, you need to ensure its proper installation and usage. It isn’t easy to properly place cameras without experts’ help. You may install them improperly, which can compromise your security. Similarly, your camera should be protected from burglars, weather, dust, etc.

Today, we’ll take you through some important considerations that should be considered while installing and using outdoor home security cameras.

Table of Contents

1. Choose the Right Spot

Every home has a different layout, so there is no one-size-fits-all approach while placing your outdoor security cameras. Experts recommend having at least two to three home security cameras or “one camera per entrance” to secure your home truly.

A home security camera on the front entrance is mandatory, as 34% of burglars use this access point for attacks. However, if you are using a video doorbell on the front door, then place your camera on the back entrance.

For video doorbells, experts recommend installing them 4 feet above the ground. This strategic place would show the faces of the visitors as well as the packages that would be left at the door.

On the other hand, if you are not using doorbell cameras, the outdoor security cameras should be mounted above the doorframe or window facing downward to cover the entrance.

2. Keep Your Outdoor Cameras Visible

Many people try to hide or disguise their outdoor cameras as they think having a security camera outside would hint to burglars that there is something precious in your home.

Contrary to popular belief, we suggest keeping your outdoor security cameras visible. The reason is that these cameras can be a great deterrent and force would-be burglars to move along to the next target.

If you want to intimidate porch pirates and unwanted intruders, the best bet would be to keep your outdoor cameras unveiled. Moreover, you can even try cameras with a spotlight as it warns nighttime intruders that they are being recorded.

3. Make Sure Your Wi-Fi Support Camera Resolution

Before investing in an outdoor security camera, make sure your internet plan has enough bandwidth to support the resolution of the camera. You can use cameras with 1080K resolution, but having 2k or 4k quality resolution would mean you have actionable footage of suspicious activity in the recording.

The high resolution demands more bandwidth and high upload speeds, especially if you use multiple cameras or continuously record. It means if you are using a camera with 4k resolution but have internet with less bandwidth to low speed, you would be unable to retrieve data.

Moreover, upload speed is critical as your data won’t be uploaded to the cloud without higher coverage. Therefore, always check the mbps requirement of security cameras before buying one.

4. Use Wired Cam in Weak Signal Areas

Wireless security cameras are enormously adopted because of their easy installation as well as you can mount them in unusual areas without finding the outlet. Moreover, there is no risk of burglars cutting the cords to disable your feed.

Despite these benefits, you may have to go for wired cams in areas of signal interference. For instance, multistory apartments are often inundated with signals which may cause interferences when you try to access live feed.

Similarly, anything like cinder brick walls between your outdoor security camera and the router can disrupt the signals, as your wireless cam will struggle to connect with the router. Therefore, you should consider wired cam or Power over Ethernet (PoE) cameras in such areas.

5. Leverage Motion Detectors

Though getting a push notification of a tree being blown by the wind is extremely annoying, it is far better than losing your valuable assets. You might end up investing in expensive doorbells because your package has been stolen off your doorstep.

Just by recording the footage, you are not getting top-notch security. It may help you identify the burglar but does not deter bad actors from your property. Therefore motion detectors are important to get alert before the incident can happen, even if it’s to tell that a delivery guy is coming to hand over the package.

Some cameras offer people-only alert features or package-only alerts, and you can turn off motion-sensing sensitivity whenever you want. You can also select your notification window, such as you will get a notification of people walking to your doorstep and not on the sidewalk.

6. Connect Smart Devices to Your Outdoor Camera

We are living in an age of smart homes where everything is automated. Besides connecting your security camera to your smartphone, you can also consider connecting it to other smart devices within your home.

For instance, you can automatically activate or deactivate your smart camera remotely. Moreover, you can connect them to voice assistants. For instance, you can ask Alexa to respond smartly to the doorbells.

This interconnection of security devices within your home will increase efficiency, allowing better control and access to live feeds and recordings.

Also Read: Main door elevation designs – Make a Grand Entrance

7. Opt for Local Video Storage

It is tempting to store camera recordings on the cloud and get access to them from anywhere. However, privacy is a big concern in the cloud storage of data. Whenever the data is stored on the cloud, there is a faint possibility that someone can remotely access your private footage, compromising your security.

On the other hand, local storage involves storing data in your SD card and accessing them on your mobile phone via secure encryption. Moreover, security companies charge for cloud storage of data. Therefore, local storage of video recordings not only protects your privacy but also cuts costs.

Also Read: Using self storage to help you organize your living space

Key Takeaways

Outdoor security cameras are a necessary addition to your home’s security system, but their appropriate usage is equally important. Following the above-mentioned tips, you can get the most out of your security camera investments by protecting your home from unwanted intruders.

Saad Iqbal is a professional civil engineering and freelance write. He's passionate about structures, construction management, and home improvement topics. He's been working as a Senior Engineer in a consultant firm for over 8 years. Besides he loves writing informative and in-depth content focused on construction and home-related topics. You can catch him at his linkedin page or reach out via our contact us page.

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