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Electrical question

Discussion in 'Home Improvement' started by Netmonkey, Sep 18, 2017.

  1. Sep 18, 2017 at 6:11 AM
    #1
    Netmonkey

    Netmonkey [OP] Don't be a Dumbass

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    hey guys,

    I want to install security cameras on my house. I have found that there are many great wifi camera options, but they all require a power source. however, there are not outlets (or nearby power sources) where I want to install the cameras. I have a 2 story house and I want to install them under the overhangs on the first story (the over hangs are 10-15 feet above the ground). The back porch has a switched light and the front porch has 2 switched lights. so my question is: can the porch lights be tapped into and have an 'always hot' line run to the areas where I want the cameras installed? also, can an outlet be safely used on the outside of the house? they would be tucked under the overhangs.

    thanks,
     
    ColoradoTJ likes this.
  2. Sep 18, 2017 at 6:25 AM
    #2
    ColoradoTJ

    ColoradoTJ So there I was.... Staff Member

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    You should have no issues with installing electrical outlets in the soffits.
     
    Netmonkey [OP] likes this.
  3. Sep 18, 2017 at 6:58 AM
    #3
    tomsinamerica

    tomsinamerica New Member

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    have a look at a netgear arlo....

    they're wireless.. including power as they run off rechargeable batteries that last up to 6 months.

    But to answer your question, if i were to put an outlet outside, even under an overhang, I'd put an exterior waterproof one to be sure.

    As for getting power there, I looked at taking a hot from my ground floor porch light to run to the top but there was no easy/neat way to get it through an exterior wall due to the insulation. It was easier for me to tap from a ceiling fan in the attic and run it to the extremity. Given when i was contemplating this was in the middle of summer... Arlos won the day.
     
    Netmonkey [OP] likes this.
  4. Sep 18, 2017 at 7:09 AM
    #4
    mlucas555

    mlucas555 New Member

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    I am looking at Ring stickup cams to put around my house. I already have the Ring doorbell. One of the nice things about some of the Ring cameras is that they have a solar panel option that you can hook up to the camera. They can run either on battery that you change out or the solar. I am thinking about going with the solar for mine.
     
  5. Sep 18, 2017 at 7:42 AM
    #5
    Bprose

    Bprose Old member

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    Ditto with the ring products.
     
    TheBeast likes this.
  6. Sep 18, 2017 at 7:48 AM
    #6
    Netmonkey

    Netmonkey [OP] Don't be a Dumbass

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    so, it is possible to tap into a switched outdoor light and run an always hot line to where I want it?
     
  7. Sep 18, 2017 at 7:55 AM
    #7
    tomsinamerica

    tomsinamerica New Member

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    can't say with 100% certainty but i've found that if the light is part of several governed by one breaker in your panel, there should be hot at the light itself as it's daisy chained from light to light. (at least that's how my mid-70s house was wired)
     
  8. Sep 18, 2017 at 8:23 AM
    #8
    Danimal86

    Danimal86 What's a Dickfir?

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    Have you ever had a hardwired camera system before? If you have, dont bother with Arlo.

    In our previous 1 story house, i installed an 8 camera setup from costco. It was a PAIN IN THE ASS to install (took 2 full days), but it had a clear 1080p picture and was recording 24/7. In our current 2 story house, i said i wasn't going to do that again, and opt'd for the 5 camera Arlo system (non pro version). Installation took about 45 min start to finish. Depending on how heavy the traffic is in front of the camera, i get about 3 months out of the batteries. Picture quality is ok at best. You aren't going to be reading any license plates. You can turn on a live feed any time, but it only records for 10 seconds (or whatever you have it set to) after it see's motion. The app is kinda buggy, and is not super responsive because its a cloud based dvr. You can only have 5 cameras on an account before you have to start paying monthly for service.

    Arlo is good for the person who wants to check on their pets in the afternoon when at work, or see if their Amazon packages have been delivered. If you are having problems with theft or break-ins, get a hard wired system. It will be a pain in the ass to install, but you will be happy with it.
     
  9. Sep 18, 2017 at 8:49 AM
    #9
    Netmonkey

    Netmonkey [OP] Don't be a Dumbass

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    I have had a hard powered wifi system before and it has the advantage of storing the video on a hard drive in my house. I can also view the video from the base unit in the house. Some of the newer models can also be accessed via a phone app. This is the setup that I prefer. That's why I am considering going through all the trouble to have outlets wired up.

    The 100% wireless models just aren't quite there yet for me. The ring costs a little over $200 each and I want 4 cameras. I can get a hard powered system that's has everything that I want for under $600.
     
  10. Sep 18, 2017 at 9:56 AM
    #10
    NewImprovedRon

    NewImprovedRon Hey! Get off my grass!

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    I would think you would have to tap the hot line before the switch vs after the switch to have it always hot. The switch just breaks the circuit in my thinking, but what do I know....
     
  11. Sep 18, 2017 at 3:16 PM
    #11
    whiteTRD'02

    whiteTRD'02 New Member

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    You could possibly get constant power to your soffit from the garage door opener outlet (surface conduit to j-box) or from any outlet/switch on an exterior wall, opposing the the soffit.
    Most light fixtures have switched power only.
     
  12. Sep 18, 2017 at 3:49 PM
    #12
    Help

    Help New Member

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    I install these systems occasionally for work and Danimal is spot on with his assessment. I'd recommend you get a wired camera system that provides power to the cameras via the dvr. It'll be far easier to run wiring in your attic and then to a central location than tapping into and running new electrical up your exterior walls. (easier being a relative term here haha) The cameras themselves are weather-proof or -resistant and you can easily seal the hole coming into the house with silicone. Plus, a wired DVR connection is also not dependent on your wifi functioning.

    On the flip side, battery powered cameras take far less time and effort to install, but you sacrifice picture quality or increased maintenance.

    Just be thorough with your research. They all have trade-offs so you're going to have to compromise someplace.
     
  13. Sep 18, 2017 at 4:30 PM
    #13
    BlueBottle

    BlueBottle not a PRO

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    This. For someone in the security industry I would never go wireless unless it was my only choice. Couldn't have said it better than above. I bought an 8 camera IP bun swann from Costco. Not the best out there but for the price it's hard to beat.
     
  14. Sep 18, 2017 at 4:32 PM
    #14
    BlueBottle

    BlueBottle not a PRO

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    On a side note. I have 1 wireless camera in the backyard on my shed. It is a ring stick up camera w solar panel. I never need to charge it!
     
  15. Sep 20, 2017 at 7:31 PM
    #15
    Help

    Help New Member

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    Those things are neat. I like the flood light one, too.
     
  16. Feb 4, 2018 at 5:31 PM
    #16
    SMK Shoe

    SMK Shoe Not New Member

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    Just did work on this Sunday morning. Son In Law wanted to install a camera system at their house. Installed 8 Wireless cameras. No cables to the DVR, Clear picture. But guess who got to spend the morning running 200 feet of wire in a dark, no air flow, dusty Attic. Installed 6 outlets, 1 switch and 2 lights. Gonna go clean up the wiring next weekend. Really good SIL, but was never taught anything about electric. But, atleast I have manual labor.:bananadance::bananadance::bananadance::bananadance::bananadance::bananadance::bananadance:
     

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