How to install home security camera system by yourself

There are numerous benefits that come with using a professionally installed home alarm setup in your home, but you may not afford to hire one. Fortunately, there are some models that allow you to do a DIY setup, and they are more affordable and easier to install than you may initially assume, as long as you keep certain factors in mind.

When installing the system, you will need to first plan ahead to see the best positions to install the cameras, proceed with camera installation, install the DVR system, arrange the wiring and connect the wires, and then test the system to see if there are any issues.

The method you use to install the cameras will depend on the camera types you select, as well as their power source. For instance, a wireless outdoor camera uses a different setup strategy compared to an indoor security camera that uses a wired format.

Steps to installing a home security camera system

Plan ahead

Before you begin installing any camera security system anywhere, it is best to plan ahead and know the best placement spots to reduce cable length and maximize camera coverage. This in turn, will reduce any chances of reduction in video quality, since it will reduce in-line losses.

For an indoor camera placement, opt for a corner in your room that has the best view of all entry points, and ensure there is a nearby power socket as well. If the camera is meant for outdoor use, choose a spot at least 10 feet above the garage, window, or door to avoid it being knocked down easily.

Camera installation

Once you choose a spot, install the camera unit by making some drilling guide marks. Drill holes on these spots and install your screw moldings, then set the camera firmly in place. Additionally, insert the camera’s power cable into a socket.

DVR installation

All footage that your security camera collects is stored in the DVR, which contains your hard disk that you use to check surveillance footage. Therefore, always store the DVR in a compartment that is locked at all times, so that any intruders cannot destroy surveillance in case they spot it.

Managing the cables

Plan the cable pathways from the camera to the DVR unit, and add a layer of security by using wire moldings to make them harder to cut or disconnect.

Connect the wires

Through the camera’s BNC port, you will connect the video cable that links the DVR and the camera. To do so, take the video cable and remove approximately 1.5cm of its exterior covering to expose the wire braids. You then take the crimping barrel and slide it on the cable, ensuring that its wider diameter is facing the cable’s end.

You will notice an insulator shielding the innermost cable, so you can remove it. These exposed cables will connect directly to the BNC port, and you will secure them by screwing in the crimping barrel. You can finally connect the output port from the DVR to the screen that will show you the surveillance feed.

Testing the system

Once you are done with installation, power the cameras on first, then the display screen, and finally the DVR. In the DVR’s user manual, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to set it up, and check the feed of each camera to ensure they are working properly.

What are the main components of your home security system?

Different companies will provide various security components with different strengths and weaknesses, and most vendors of DIY systems will allow you to purchase components one-by-one when creating your system. Regardless of the vendor you go for, the basics you should have in your security system are:

Keypad and main panel

These two components are the brain of your home security setup. The keypad allows you to activate and deactivate the system, and can even allow you to do extra tasks such as setting alarms if it is advanced in functionality.


All alarm systems regardless of complexity will include sensors for your doors and windows, which will react when someone opens your window or door. The number of sensors you choose will depend on your personal preference, as well as the number of doors and windows in your home.

Motion detectors

These components always react when they detect motion in the room, and they are usually placed in the corners of your house. There are advanced types of motion detectors, which will automatically record videos when they detect movement, thanks to their pairing with your security cameras.

You can watch the video in real-time or monitor past footage from an internet-connected device like your phone as well, depending on the system.

Which places should you install the cameras?

Front door exterior

You might think that most intruders in your home will come in through a side or back entrance, but many use the front door – it is the easiest access point. Therefore, placing a security camera will monitor everyone coming in and going out, especially certain cameras like video doorbells.

Side and back door exteriors

These will cover any entry point visitors that are not going in through the front door, so install the cameras especially in doors that are frequently used alongside your front door.


Garages are unfortunately a weak entry point, making them easy targets for burglars. Installing a security camera will allow you to keep watch of all items inside including cars and bikes, as well as the people handling them.

Your yard

Keeping track of your yard will protect you from anyone snooping in from outside, including trespassers and animals.

Common interior spots

Placing the cameras in your living room or kitchen is a good way of seeing what people are up to. Ensure you prioritize rooms with large ground-floor windows, where the cameras can detect break-in attempts or tampering.


Any thoroughfare in your home needs a security camera to detect any movements or break-ins through bedrooms, bathrooms, and additional unmonitored areas.


Installing a DIY-security system for your home can help you add a layer of protection to your space, but it is not always the best solution for everyone. You can get plenty of guidance from surveillance companies and expert installers as well, to ensure you are installing it correctly.

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Robinson Wright is a home automation specialist and has helped many modern home developers pick the right gadgets for home automation. According to Wright, most people struggle with particular areas in their home, some would want improved security especially when away from home for a couple of days and others will want to improve power consumption. Homeowner's needs can be fulfilled by investing in smart home gadgets but most importantly is that one must know the functionality that they desire to achieve and then choose a product and technology that would fulfill the need. Robinson Wright runs an appliance enterprise and when not in the field working with his clients, he loves spending time in his workshop testing out the new technologies.

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