One of the best smart home devices that you should have on your home is a video doorbell. If you want to check who exactly visited your home when you’re outside, want to invest an added layer of security to protect your home, or want to take a look who’s ringing the doorbell first before opening the door, then you should consider installing a smart video doorbell on your home.
What is a video doorbell?
A video doorbell is an intercom system that is web-connected and souped-up for your home. It is made by major companies and incorporated a video camera in a standard doorbell chime. These major companies include Google who made the Nest Hello doorbell and Amazon who made the Ring doorbell.
This video doorbell sends notifications to your mobile device with the use of an internet connection and not just buzz you when a visitor is in front of your home. It will show you a live video feed of the person waiting outside your door. You can also speak with the visitors using the speaker installed in it.
Other than those basic features above, a video doorbell is also installed with AI face recognition system, infrared sensors, and motion detectors, so you can know if there’s a visitor outside your home immediately, even if they aren’t buzzing your doorbell. If you think that your home attracts undesirable guests, this smart device can be very handy.
When you’re not at home, the video doorbell can also capture and record all the events that will happen outside your home while you’re gone. You can then watch the recorded footage later when you’re back at your home and check if there are any suspicious events that happened or if there are any guests that you’ve missed. Recordings will be stored on the cloud storage of your video doorbell provider, which can be accessed anytime and anywhere using your smartphone.
However, you should pay and register for a subscription first before getting these additional features. This can be a little pricey but it’s worth it because you can easily monitor your home even if you’re miles away.
Is it hard to install?
No. The smart video doorbell is not hard to install, especially if you bought a battery-powered video doorbell. For instance, the Ring Doorbell 2 made by Amazon, is one of the most popular and best video doorbells in the market today because you can either power it using a rechargeable battery or simply plug it into a power outlet. The risk part of setting up a video doorbell is how you can securely place its casing so it won’t fall off the wall. Try to use a strong adhesive tape when placing it on your doorframe to keep it secure. After that, you just have to pair it on your WiFi connection using the video doorbell app and you’re done.
Installing your video doorbell
The actual installation of a video doorbell can be a little daunting, especially if it is your first time to install one. Here’s a step by step guide to help you install a video doorbell easily.
1. Let’s start with the basics
The installation of a video doorbell depends on what type you have. For this guide, we will be using the Nest Hello doorbell made by Google. You will need a drill, pliers, and a screwdriver. If the doorbell is wired, you should shut down the power circuit first. Fixing your chime box is also recommended if your doorbell can ring the chime on your home.
You can always get some help with an expert to install the video doorbell on your home. But, if you want to save up on labor, you can definitely do it yourself.
- Shut down the power circuit. As mentioned above, this is the first thing that you should do if your doorbell works with the wiring on your home. You can try the switches close to the chime box and doorbell if you’re not sure which breaker switch should be turned off. Then, try to ring your doorbell after flipping the breaker. If the doorbell isn’t working anymore, then you’ve flipped the right circuit breaker.
- Look for the chime box. Your chime typically comes with a box that is wired into it. You should find this box and turn it off as well if the doorbell can ring it. Look for the chime box. After that, remove it and find the two wired that leads to the screws with a “trans” and “front” marks.
You need to do one of two things, depending on what hardware you have. If your doorbell is Nest Hello, then you should remove all existing wires and attach them to the cable slots of your chime accessories. After that, wire it to the two bare wires we’ve mentioned earlier.
If you’re using different chime hardware, you have to remove the two wires coming from the chime terminals. After that, twist them together with the hardware wires of the video doorbell and connect them back to the chime terminals again.
Look for any empty cavity space. Tuck the hardware in it after the wires have been connected. But, make sure to not interfere with the strikes because it might hit the metal bars of your chime. After that, replace the box of your chime and proceed to the video doorbell installation.
2. Installation guide
- Remove the existing doorbell button first before installing your new video doorbell. Remove the two screws that hold the existing doorbell in place. After that, gently pull the button off the wall so it won’t get damaged. Then, remove the attachment of your home’s wiring from it.
Just pull the wiring gently and don’t put too much force. Carefully pull the additional wire out of the wall if possible. This can be helpful in the next steps of the installation process.
- Attach a mounting bracket to your home. Place it over the wiring of the doorbell. Your doorbell might need to have an angle bracket to account for cornered wiring. Attach this angle bracket to the mounting bracket.
- Look for the screw holes of the mounting bracket. Mark these holes with a pencil and remove the mounting bracket. After that, drill some pilot holes on the marks. Put the mounting bracket back and screw it on the wall.
If the video doorbell won’t have to use any wirings because it’s battery-operated, just tape and cap the wirings off so it can be protected from the elements, such as rain and fire. Tightly tuck them into the wall to keep it secure.
- Once the mounting bracket is in place, attach the wiring of your home to the new video doorbell. Typically, a bridge wiring is involved in this step, but this depends on the approach of your doorbell’s manufacturer. This bridge wiring will go between the doorbell and the wirings of your home.
For Nest Hello, these bridge wirings or clamps are just like the chime box. They will slip onto the wiring of your home until you feel that something clicks. After that, tuck the extra wiring behind the mounting bracket. You may need to remove the mounting bracket if the wires won’t fit on the space. Then, use a drill to create more space until the wires can all fit in.
- Connect the bridge wiring onto the doorbell. You will be connecting it to the two terminals at the back of the doorbell. You can either loop the wiring around the two terminals or slide it to the clamps under the screw if you’re using Nest Hello.
- You can now mount the video doorbell on the mounting bracket. If you’re using Nest Hello, you should first slide the top of it into place. Push it to the bottom until you hear a clicking sound. For other video doorbells, you have to screw the doorbell so it can be connected to the bracket.
- Now, check the doorbell if it’s working. Turn on the circuit breaker and take a look at the doorbell if it lights up. If yes, then you can proceed with the pairing process. You should also check if the doorbell button rings the chime.
For the last part, you have to download and install the app for your video doorbell. Make an account and pay for the subscription if you want to get all the features.
If the doorbell is not working, on the other hand, then you should turn off the circuit breaker again and check the wirings on the chime box and the doorbell itself. Contact the manufacturer of your video doorbell if you think the problem lies in the hardware itself.