Security cameras are an excellent way to protect your home. Not only do they function as evidence in the event that there is a break-in, but they can also act as a deterrent. To most effectively use security cameras, they need to be wired throughout your house — and this can requires some challenging wire work. Wired cameras are often more effective than WiFi cameras, as they are more stable and higher quality. You’ll need:

  • Ethernet cables. Most modern security cameras can operate through ethernet cables alone.
  • A drill or drywall saw. If you’re going to be running the wiring through your walls, you’ll need a way to get into them.
  • Cable covers. If you aren’t running the wire through your walls, you can cover them with paintable cable covers.

Getting Ready to Start Wiring

Most security cameras are sold in sets which include the security cameras themselves and a box that they all connect to. This box is going to be your first line of contact to review your stored security footage and switch between viewing cameras. For most part, most cameras today simply use Ethernet cables. Each security camera is going to need to be mounted to the appropriate place and then wired directly to the box.

Older cameras may be analog. Analog systems will need a BNC cable instead, which will translate the analog signal to a digital signal.

Many cameras do not require additional electrical wiring, but some may. If they do, that means you’ll need to run electrical wires from your power supply box to your cameras — after, naturally, turning off the power. Your manual should have directions regarding the electrical connections. Be careful — and look out for any wiring problems.

Placing Your Cameras

Try to place your cameras and test them out before mounting them, as you need to be able to see whether there are any blind spots in your setup. You can have a friend hold cameras in place and take a picture from each camera, so you can see exactly what your system will see when it’s completely installed. Usually you want a high and clear vantage point, near the top of a wall.

When placing your cameras, keep in mind that you actually want them to be seen — for the most part. A camera in full view can  be enough of a deterrent that the camera itself is unneeded. But having a secondary camera that isn’t easily seen can also be advantageous, as it may catch those who are trying to sneak past the others.

Drilling Camera Holes and Running the Wires

Many camera sets will come with a template that makes this process easier. But if they do not, you simply need to match the camera up to your ceiling or wall and drill where the mounting assembly is going to be placed. If you’re going to be running wire through the drywall or ceiling, this is the time to make the wire holes. You will then feed the camera’s connection wires, either digital or analog, through the hole — which will usually go up to the attic. The cameras themselves can be mounted into place with the included mounting hardware.

Once the cameras have been drilled and mounted, you’re ready to connect them directly to their central hub and start using them. Most of these hubs will be connected to through your home network; from there you’ll be able to control your settings and check on your camera placement.