How to secure your home with surveillance camera system?

Here is a simple guide on how to secure an average home with surveillance camera system. It may seem as simple as just mounting surveillance cameras and connecting them to DVR unit. But many times it is one of those situations when the more you learn and read the less you know. So I will try to provide a few important tips helping homeowners securing their property with CCTV system.
Unless we want to keep an eye on the babysitter, most likely we will be talking here about outdoor surveillance for home. In case of surveillance for single family house, there is few locations we should focus on and cover them with surveillance cameras. So, we should have a camera at every entrance to the house. That means putting wide angle lens surveillance camera right above each door in left or right corner. It is important to keep in mind that we don’t want the camera to be blinded by the door if it is open. Also we don’t want to have a light right in front of the camera. It is a good practice to mount surveillance cameras so outside light are behind the camera. It is essential to have an camera at every door because if someone breaks in, most likely they will use the door and getting close picture of the criminal is very important. Let’s don’t forget about garage door and basement door. I would also install several cameras inside of a house. They don’t need to be everywhere, but if you have a garage, put one camera there. Since garage is usually unfinished, it is easy to run the cables and install camera there. This camera should be as hidden as possible. This will be 2nd layer of protection in case outside cameras were disabled. I would suggest putting also surveillance in the basement. It is often entry or exit point for criminals. It is important to remember that they may enter your home wearing hoods but usually once they are inside they will take them off. Hidden cameras in couple places may help a lot.
Going back to outdoor surveillance of your home, it is important to have some extra general view cameras. Do not try to get license plates. It never works. But we want to know the car that robbers were driving, its color, make and any other detail that may be helpful later (bumper stickers, rims, spoiler etc.). Police will be on the lookout for the car matching description and chances are sooner or later someone will see similar car in the neighborhood. So it is very important to cover your driveway and streets around your property. It is actually more important than getting a face shot on the other cameras. So let’s get the car information recorded before robbers get even inside of your home.
Another very important aspect in home surveillance and security is location of the DVR. Since Digital Video Recorder will have all the video footage, it is important to locate it out of sight. So hide it in the basement, attic, closet, under the bed etc. Criminal will not spend extra time looking for it, but if it is in your living room next to TV, they will take it, often not even knowing what it is. Good place to locate the DVR is the place where robbers don’t go at all. It may be your laundry room, spare bathroom, nursery etc. Just remember that every DVR needs to have good ventilation and ambient temperature can’t exceed or go below operating temperature usually listed in spec sheet. Remember also that DVR is your base and every camera would need to be wired back to it. So easy access from the attic or basement, through which we would usually run cables, will make your work easier and cleaner.
So which cameras should I consider for home surveillance? Answer is pretty easy. In most of the home surveillance installations we use Turret, Ball type Cameras with Infrared Night Vision. They look good, perform great and are much less offensive to your neighbors and visitors than i.e. bullet type cameras. On the top of that, they come with infrared, so you can use them at night without having to install outside light all around your house. Turret type cameras are also easy to mount and adjust with wall or ceiling mounting option. Ball Cameras come with Vari-Focal or Fixed Lens. Fixed Lens is not-adjustable. Systems with those cameras are less expensive and can be used for short range surveillance (up to 50ft) with Cameras mounted at low level (up to 10ft). So those systems are perfect for ranch house, split level home or any other 1 story house. If you live in colonial style home, you probably will mount your cameras under the soffit. It is most common choice since you can ran the cables through the attic which usually is open. Since cameras are pretty high, you would want to use Security Cameras with Vari-Focal Lens. With those Cameras you can manually adjust zoom. So if the cameras are high you can zoom in to get more detailed view. It is a little extra work and you may need another person to view camera while you are adjusting zoom and focus. But this feature is way worth extra effort. Also Home Surveillance Systems with Vari-Focal Lens have stronger Infrared so Cameras can see farther in the darkness. Another great feature when Cameras are mounted high up.
Choosing DVR may seem very difficult too. After all there is so many to choose from. Start with number of channels or number of cameras you need it to support. Most common are 4, 8 and 16 channel Digital Video Recorders. For larger systems we have 24 channel or even 32 ch DVR unit. Many customers just want the best unit out there. But what really means “the best DVR”? DVR should provide highest recording quality with all the necessary features for home surveillance system. Features like remote access, mobile access from smartphone or tablet, maintenance free operation, reliability, user friendly interface and email alerts are probably the most important features in home surveillance system. On the top of that it would be nice to have something that doesn’t take whole closet. So yes, make sure that DVR you are about to purchase has all those features, but don’t look at the price. You don’t need enterprise grade DVR for home surveillance system. It will work, but it wont give you any extra benefits. You just wasting your money for features like 8 hard drive support, network server backup, industrial case, loop out for every channel, multiple sensor inputs etc. We encourage you to check our section for home surveillance systems and see our solutions for home security. You will find there pre-configured CCTV packages designed for residential surveillance.

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