I’ll See Who’s At the Door!
Feel a little excited when the doorbell rings (making the dog bark hysterically, of course) or there’s a sudden knock?
I do. And maybe you’re also a little anxious, as in: Yikes, who’s come to see me? And do I want to see them?
There’s a new tech-savvy answer to such front door drama. It’s called the smart video doorbell. It’s an innovation for people who want the convenience of screening visitors without answering the door, plus the security of monitoring who’s on your property without installing a fancy security system. And you don’t need much more than a strong Wi-Fi signal near the door to make it all happen.
Imagine getting an alert on your phone when someone rings the doorbell, followed by a live video feed of your visitor. Or monitoring any activity near your entrances even if someone doesn’t ring the bell (for instance, if the mailman leaves a package). Imagine being able to see if your kids have gotten home safely from school—and greet them—or from a date, whether you’re simply upstairs or hundreds of miles away. Video doorbells are fantastic for creating the impression that you’re home even when you’re not.
There are lots of DIY smart home security products on the market. The basic smart video doorbell system, though, includes a video camera, a microphone-speaker combo so you can hear and talk to visitors, motion sensors, and the physical doorbell that attaches to your house. As soon as someone sets off the motion sensor or rings the bell, an alert pings your phone or tablet. Tap the alert and the system will begin sending live video to your device, plus turn on the microphone. It also stores this video in the cloud so you can review it later. Your child says he came straight home after school? Check out his claim by checking the video—and see if he had friends along, or just his books. (Expect to pay a monthly subscription fee if you want access to recorded video.)
Lots of manufacturers are getting into this field, so there’s an expanding range of products with a similarly wide range in product prices. The simplest devices start for under $30; the most deluxe smart doorbells go for more than $500. You can probably find a product you like in the $200 range. Best of all, if you’re even a little handy, you can install the device yourself. Some are battery operated, while others connect to the existing wiring. Of course, if you have any doubts, be sure to hire a home repair professional to get set up.
The most important variable is a strong Wi-Fi connection near your door. Without it, you won’t get reliable video or two-way audio. Make sure that your Wi-Fi router is close enough to your smart doorbell to give it a consistent, steady signal.
Another variable is properly installing the motion sensors. You want to make sure they are aimed properly so you don’t get pinged every time the wind rustles the trees or a car drives by. More good news: Even at night, the cameras are sensitive enough to capture a recognizable image. And they can stand up to wind and rain.
Interested in finding out more? Here are links to two recommended manufacturers:
Ring Video Doorbells: https://shop.ring.com/collections/video-doorbells
Amazon also offers a wide range of smart doorbell products: https://amzn.to/2vlDg3V
Smart doorbells can do a lot for your peace of mind—even if they can’t improve your knock-knock jokes.
At McCann Windows & Exteriors, we want you to enjoy your home and take pride in it. Let us know how we can be of service when it comes to replacing or upgrading your doors, windows, and exteriors. We’re ready to help and estimates are free. Just visit https://mccannwindow.com or call us at 847-807-1290.