Home security and surveillance are important in the world we live in today. Being able to monitor your home when you are away can give you peace of mind and security. I was interested in adding some cameras around the home to monitor it when I am away. Many of these camera systems can be costly and charge a monthly fee. After a little research, I came across a company called Wyze. Wyze makes affordable internet cameras and devices that are easy to set up and can be monitored from your smartphone or tablet. They come with motion detection notifications and free video viewing from the cloud. These cameras are also great for checking in on your pets and children. In this article, I will show you how I installed the cameras and how they performed.
Wyze Camera Features
- Live stream from anywhere in 1080p on a mobile device or tablet
- Two-way audio to speak with your friends and family through the Wyze app
- Motion/Sound recording with free cloud storage
- Wyze Cam can automatically record a 12-second video clip when motion or sound is detected and saves that video to the cloud for 14-days
- Mobile push notifications
- Record continuously to a MicroSD card (sold separately) regardless of motion and sound
- Auto night vision
- Works with Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control
- One Wyze Cam can be shared with family members
Wyze Camera Layout
I decided that I needed three cameras to cover the main areas of my home. These three cameras cover the major entry points. One camera in the living room, one pointing at the back door on the sun porch and one outside looking at the front steps and the driveway. These cameras do require power, so you need to have an outlet nearby. Each camera comes with a 6ft USB power cable and a USB wall power plug.
Here is what I purchased for the complete install.
- 3 – Wyze v2 cameras
- 1 – 15 ft Micro-USB power cable for the outside camera
- 3 – Micro sim cards for internal recording
- 1 – Outdoor Wyze camera mount and protective case
- 1 – Camera mount clip
Wyze Camera Setup
The first step was to install the Wyze app on my smartphone. Unfortunately, Wyze does not make an official user interface for a computer, but there are hacks to make this work. Once I installed the app, I launch it and was asked to create an account with a username and password. Then I logged in using my new credentials. I then chose the option to add a new product and selected the Wyze camera. After that was given a set of instructions to follow. I entered the name of my wireless network and password. Pressed the small setup button on the bottom of the camera and it then connected to my wireless network. I was then presented with a QR code on my phone screen and pointed the Wyze camera at the phone to read the code. Once it sees the code the camera said: “Set up complete”. Then I was able to name the camera. I did this for each camera. Wyze has an excellent YouTube video explaining the camera setup.
At the current time, Wyze does not make an outside camera. They are working on one. I have seen many people online using a Wyze camera installed in an outdoor case with mount and having great success. So I decided to give it a try. Luckily, I have a covered power outlet outside close to the front door. I placed the camera under my front door awing. This required a special camera mount clip and longer power cable. The camera mount clip worked perfectly and clipped securely into the awning. The camera housing assembly fit easily into place and screwed together with four screws. I have used the camera housing for a few months and has worked well in rain and snowstorms.
I was able to run the power cable along with the siding of the house. I coiled the excess cable into the covered power outlet and drilled a hole in the bottom of the outlet cover to run the power cable. This way the power supply will stay dry once the cover is closed.
The two other inside cameras were easy to place. The Wyze cameras come with an adjustable stand that swivels. This will help you position the camera for the best angle. I placed one camera on the fireplace mantel and the other sitting on a small table pointing at the back door. You could hide the cameras in something. Maybe I will try this in the future.
The Wyze app is well designed and easy to use. All your camera feeds are accessible once you launch the app. Just click on the camera you want to view and it will open to a live stream. Here you can see the camera in real-time and use the live feed to adjust the camera to get the right picture. The quality of the cameras is excellent and displays full HD with sound.
The nice part about the Wyze camera is you can set up motion detection. It can be triggered by a person, motion or sound. You can also fine-tune the motion detection area which will affect its sensitivity. Each time the camera detects motion according to your parameters it will record a 12-sec clip. You can also view all of the recorded playbacks from up to two days. (only works if internal Micro sim cards are installed).
Auto Night Vision
The Wyze cameras have night vision capabilities. The cameras can be set to auto mode allowing it to switch between day and night.
All of your 12-sec recordings are viewable in the Events tab. These videos can be viewed up to 14 days for free. You can save any recordings directly to your phone or tablet for future playback.
Notifications can be sent to your phone or tablet. This can alert you of just motion or if a person is detected.
One nice feature is you can share camera feeds with others. For instance, I set up several Wyze cameras at my father’s house to monitor it while he is away on vacation. He can share the cameras with me and I can view them and get alerts through the Wyze app. This is a very handy feature. So I can monitor his house while he is away. I used a camera mount that was already installed, bought the Wyze camera housing and it screwed right into the existing mount. Then I drilled a hole, ran the cable into the garage and plugged the power into the closest power outlet. I sealed the hole with some outside caulking and fastened the cable with some cable screws.
I have been using these cameras for several months. Overall I am very pleased with this surveillance setup. The cameras have performed very well and were easy to install. The Wyze app is easy to use and has a lot of helpful features. Wyze has an excellent forum to help with troubleshooting and setup ideas. Wyze is constantly developing new products. They also have automated door locks, lights and power outlets. If you are looking for cheap and effective surveillance set up these cameras are well worth it.