Solar Outdoor Security Cameras: How to Select, Place and Maintain

Solar outdoor security cameras open up new possibilities if you need to monitor the exterior off-grid places or sites that are difficult to run wires.

With so many options of solar outdoor cameras available, it can be difficult to know where to start.

In our prior post, we have covered how outdoor solar-powered security cameras work and why you should choose them. Today we’re going to walk you through more you’d ever want to know about solar-powered outdoor cameras.

Ideal Locations to Place Solar Outdoor Security Cameras

“I visit my cabin during the winter on average every 2-3 weeks, and need a solar outdoor solar security camera to check on the place for visual peace of mind.”

“I am going to be installing a solar-powered outdoor security camera system with audio in construction sites. I have a wireless connection back to my hub, but I need to have a solar panel for the system as there will not be permanent power installed at the site for approximately 12 months.”

If you also have the security needs in a place where the power source or Internet is not available, the solar outdoor cameras would be your best bet, such as

  • Remote cabins
  • Off-grid sheds
  • Vacation home
  • Farms & barns
  • Boats
  • RVs & campsite
  • Warehouses
  • Rented property
  • Construction sites and more

Fact Check: Solar Outdoor Security Cameras Also Work in Undesired Conditions

Will solar outdoor security cameras work with a modest amount of British or Canadian sunshine?

Most of you may view the sunlight as a must for the solar-powered outdoor security cameras. But it turns out to be a mere misconception.

So we’ve got this part to renovate your understanding of solar outdoor cameras.

1. Do Solar Powered Outdoor Security Cameras Need to Be Installed in Direct Sunlight?

NOT necessarily.

Outdoor solar-powered security cameras get power from the solar panel which produces electricity from the photons present in natural daylight, rather than the sunlight itself.

But placing the solar wireless outdoor security cameras along with the solar panel in direct sunlight will provide optimum conditions to obtain more electricity. (Learn how to position the solar panel for solar outdoor security cameras to capture more sunlight.)

2. Can Solar Outdoor Security Cameras Work in Shade?

Undoubtedly the output of solar panels will decrease, but the WiFi outdoor solar-powered security cameras can still work in shade – just at less efficiency.

To mitigate this problem, place your solar-powered outdoor wireless security cameras and the solar panel in areas where there is no regular shading. Also, consider how shade changes on your property during different seasons.

Since one common source of shade comes from the trees near the solar panel, you can regularly trim the trees near the solar outdoor security cameras and panel to get the most from the surveillance system.

3. Will Outdoor Solar Powered Security Cameras Work in Winter?

Yes, and even BETTER.

When snow is on the ground and the solar panel for your solar outdoor CCTV security cameras is clean, the snowy surface basically acts as a mirror and you can get more energy output.

But if the solar panel is covered with snow, the efficiency of your solar wireless outdoor security cameras will be greatly reduced.

Don’t worry even if you have several days with no sunlight!

Normally the solar outdoor security cameras will provide you with two power source options – solar-powered and battery-powered. When the panel produces no electricity, the rechargeable batteries can power your solar-powered outdoor wireless security cameras for normal work.

How to Choose Best Solar Powered Outdoor Security Cameras

Before you buy solar outdoor security cameras, here are some important factors that need to be taken into account.

1. Solar Outdoor Security Cameras with Long Working Hours When There Is No Sun

“How long can the solar outdoor security cameras work without sunlight?”

Most of you might ask this question before you go for a solar wireless outdoor security camera system.

Though some sellers of solar WiFi outdoor security cameras might offer you a rough number for your reference, the actual working hours vary with the size and efficiency of the solar panel as well as the rechargeable battery size.

To ensure that the solar-powered wireless outdoor security cameras can still get juice after several days of cloudy weather, longer battery life for your solar powered outdoor surveillance cameras is more recommended. (Learn how to size your batteries for solar-powered outdoor IP cameras.)

2. Solar Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras with Vandal-proof and Weather-Resistant Design

Since your solar outdoor security cameras will be exposed to the elements, they should be at least IP65 weatherproof to withstand the harsh weather conditions.

And the low-profile wireless solar outdoor surveillance cameras with vandal-proof design can also help avoid potential thefts and vandalism.

Taking ZOSI C1, a solar-powered outdoor IP camera, for example, it comes with a sturdy wall mount to protect against easy thefts.

Besides, you can also hide the solar outdoor WiFi cameras in inconspicuous locations and place them out of easy reach.

Adding a protective skin to your solar outdoor security cameras can also do the trick by helping the cameras blend into the environment. (Explore more ways to protect your outdoor WiFi solar security cameras.)

3. Solar Powered Outdoor Security Cameras with Starlight Night Vision

Some high-end solar outdoor security cameras, like ZOSI C1, stand out among other security cameras with the unique starlight night vision, which contributes to improved image quality.

Thanks to the starlight technology, highly sensitive image sensor and infrared lights of solar outdoor cameras, you can see the real color of objects with no trails and identify even the smallest details in total darkness.

Note that the solar-powered outdoor security cameras with starlight night vision normally deliver black and white images by default, you may manually change the camera settings to obtain color images at night.

Check out the color night vision image of ZOSI C1 below and you’ll be impressed by its great clarity.

4. Wireless Solar Powered Outdoor Surveillance Cameras with Movement Sensor

Though your solar-powered outdoor security cameras might need to be installed in some remote sites, that doesn’t mean you cannot keep abreast of what’s happening out there.

The high-quality solar outdoor security cameras with smart PIR motion sensors work by detecting the changes of infrared radiation in the field of view.

So they can send you intelligent alerts to your phone with no false alarms caused by the moving leaves or shadows.

The wireless solar-powered outdoor surveillance cameras with movement sensors will also record motion events on board or to the cloud based on your options so that you are free to check the footage when necessary.

5. Solar Powered Outdoor Security Cameras with SD Card

Your solar-powered outdoor security camera has no WiFi connection or you don’t want to pay the monthly subscription fees?

The solar outdoor security cameras with SD cards can be a cost-effective option!

You can not only use solar wireless outdoor security cameras with local storage in places without network, but the saved videos onboard are also kept safe and you can have full control of the solar outdoor camera footage.

If you are not on a tight budget, storing the videos of solar-powered outdoor WiFi security cameras to the cloud can be a good backup plan in case of any emergencies.

Bonus: If you want a solar wireless outdoor security camera system to watch live viewing on your phone, read this post to gain more insightful information.

Best Solar Outdoor Security Cameras for Your Option

Although there are some solar outdoor security cameras for sale now, it is more recommended to choose a reliable brand to start your “green” security journey.

ZOSI, for example, has received high appraisals from its users and top-tier media after releasing its solar-powered outdoor security cameras – ZOSI C1 and ZOSI C306, which can meet your diverse security needs with & without powered supply.

Connectivity WiFi WiFi
Resolution 1080p 1080p
Viewing Angle 90° 90°
Two-way Audio Yes Yes
Night Vision Starlight Starlight
Alert Options Push notifications, emails, siren & customized alerts Push notifications, emails, siren & customized alerts
Price $44.99 $44.99

1. Best Solar Wireless Outdoor Security Camera – ZOSI C1

ZOSI C1 solar outdoor security camera frees you from the worries about the short battery life and the high cost to change batteries, in virtue of a rechargeable battery and a solar charger option.

It also stands out among other competitors with the starlight night vision, which provides clearer images and more details in low-lit conditions. So you can tell the color of clothing a potential thief war wearing or the car he was driving.

In virtue of the built-in PIR motion sensor, this wireless solar powered surveillance camera with movement sensor features accurate motion detection, and can send you instant alerts (siren, push notifications, emails) when motion is activated.

What the solar-powered wireless outdoor security camera reviews say:
“Even with a modest amount of British sunshine, it managed to trickle charge the camera enough to keep it fully topped up.”

-From Make Use of

Watch the high-quality video shared by a user of ZOSI C1.

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2. Affordable Solar Powered Outdoor Camera – ZOSI C306

No power in your place?

The solar outdoor video IP cameras would be the perfect solution, which requires no WiFi network to work.

As a cellular solar-powered outdoor camera, ZOSI C306 is designed to monitor places with power, such as your barns, farms, boats, construction sites, campsites, vacation homes, rental properties, etc.

ZOSI C306 also possesses some common features as ZOSI C1, including 100% wire-free, rechargeable battery, starlight night vision, 1080p Full HD, IP65 weatherproof, two-way audio.

One unique highlight of this solar-powered wireless outdoor security camera is that you can record your own alert message and get notified with the customized alarm when motion is detected.

Below is a video captured in a barn shared by a test user of ZOSI C306.

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Super Tips to Position & Maintain Solar Outdoor Security Cameras

To extend the lifespan of your solar outdoor security cameras, it is key to position and maintains your solar wireless outdoor security cameras in the right way. Follow and apply the following expert tips to your applications:

Insider Tips to Position Solar Powered Outdoor Security Cameras

  • Make sure the included or built-in solar panel of your solar-powered outdoor security cameras face the equator. For example, if you’re in US, the panel should face south.
  • Adjust the panel’s angle in relation to the ground during the year. The angle of a panel for solar outdoor security cameras should be set to the equivalent of your latitude plus 15 degrees in winter, or minus 15 degrees in summer.
  • Place your WiFi solar outdoor IP cameras as well as the solar panel in locations where there is no shade.

Tips to Maintain Solar Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras and Solar Panel

The first thing you need to know is that, the solar panel for solar outdoor security cameras indeed requires little maintenance since it has no moving parts that can rust or break down.

Normally a solar panel will last 25-30 years. Beyond this estimated lifespan, the solar panel for your solar-powered wireless outdoor security cameras can still produce electricity, but with declined energy output.

To sustain optimal function of your solar-powered wireless outdoor WiFi IP surveillance camera, you may regularly (say, once every two months) visit the site where the wireless solar powered surveillance camera with movement sensor is placed to clear away the possible leaves or snow on the solar panel.

And theoretically, it is best to clean the solar panel for outdoor cameras with a standard garden hose once a year (depending on your location, the tilt angle of your panels, etc.).

This ensures that dust, dirt, grime, bird droppings and debris won’t block the efficient absorption of sunlight by the panels, thus maintaining the high efficiency of your solar powered outdoor security cameras.

Hottest Questions You May Ask About Solar Outdoor Security Cameras

Below we’ve rounded up the common questions about solar outdoor security cameras to clear your possible puzzles.

1. Is It Possible to Get Notifications of a Solar Powered Outdoor Security Camera on 2 Phones? I Would Like My Husband and I Can Both Monitor It If Needed

Definitely yes!

As long as your solar wireless outdoor security camera is added to the two phones, you’ll receive real-time push notifications when motion is detected.

Taking the solar outdoor security camera ZOSI C1 for example, a maximum of 8 users can access it at the same time. And you may read this to learn how to share the access with your family or friends.

2. Can Solar Power Outdoor Cameras Record Videos to SD Card with No WiFi? I Want to Place One at an Outbuilding with No WiFi

As mentioned above, solar outdoor surveillance cameras can still record motion detection videos locally even without a WiFi network.

But for the solar outdoor security cameras that rely on WiFi for video signal transmission, the Internet connection is required if you want to watch live viewing or receive instant alerts.

3. Can I Turn the Alarm of Solar Outdoor Security Cameras Off but Still Have the Motion Detection Working? Wouldn’t Want the Siren to Sound Every Time the Mailman Comes

It is pretty easy if you want to turn off the alerts of your solar outdoor security cameras.

Just go to the device settings on the camera App. Disable the push notifications, email or Siren, and enable the record feature under the alarm option.

4. Can I View the Recordings of Solar Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras on the SD Card from the App or Do I Have to Plug in the SD Card to My Computer to View

If you can access your solar-powered wireless outdoor security camera from the App, you can simply playback the SD card recordings via the App on your phone.

Or in case you buy a non-cellular-based WiFi solar-powered outdoor camera and there is no WiFi network in the monitoring site, you can only take out the SD card manually and play the videos on your computer.

Still, have any questions about solar outdoor security cameras? Please feel free to leave your comment below and we’ll reply to you soon.