vistaronn's profile

Mon, Nov 1, 2021 2:16 AM

Doorbell camera night vision problem

The night vision on my doorbell camera fails to turn on once every week or two. When this happens, night vision cannot be triggered in either live view or when the camera detects motion. I can get night vision to start working again by turning it off and back on again in the app (from Auto to Off and back to Auto). I called SS and they sent a new camera, but I am still having the same trouble with the new one. Anyone else have this problem? Is this a known issue? The phone rep did not troubleshoot and immediately sent a replacement hoping that would solve the issue. But it seems to me that it could be a software issue if toggling the settings gets it working again.

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

9 m ago

Hi vistaronn,

We have heard of this from time to time, and it can usually be attributed to minute differences in lighting conditions in the scene. Especially since you've already tried different units, and both are seeing the same thing.
You're saying that this happens every couple of weeks, and then it goes back to normal? There might be some common factor - like a neighbor's light, or something else, that could be causing this pattern.

One thing that might help is to change the angle of the Video Doorbell (even if just to test temporarily). Our Support team at 800-548-9508 can send a wedge kit for changing the angle horizontally!

- Davey D.
Community Development Manager
SimpliSafe Home Security

22 Messages

9 m ago

I have had this exact problem for the last couple of years.  They have swapped out the camera at least twice and that did not fix it.  The last time I talked to support about this, close to a year ago,  I was told a fix would be rolled out pretty soon and that I should wait for that.  That fix has never happened.  Mine does this at least 3-4 nights a week.   It is not a matter of the Infrared coming on, the problem is the camera did not shift over form daytime mode (color) to nighttime mode

It is disappointing to have waited this long, only to be told, we are aware of the problem but have no fix.

10 Messages

9 m ago

@Davey D - I really don't think that lighting in the scene is the problem. When I toggle the night vision off and on in the app, I can get the night vision working again without any change in the outdoor lighting. I thought that a small spotlight in my yard might be causing the issue, so I removed it. The problem still happens when it is pitch black out there. I live in a very dark corner of the neighborhood. Fortunately, it doesn't happen too often, but it happens enough to make me concerned that I'll miss important activity.

@IowaGuy - That is disappointing to hear that a fix has not been released after a full year of this being a known issue. It does seem that the issue is that the camera does not switch from daytime to nighttime mode.

4 Messages

9 m ago

I have had this issue as well.  Toggling the night vision from Auto to On and then back to Auto helps, but only for a day.  I have also noticed that it seems to be more of an issue when I have the system set to Away vs Off/Home.  When we're home, it seems to work all the time.  Any updates or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

9 m ago

@vistaronn,

What I mean to say is that there's a light sensor on the Outdoor Camera that is used to detect the level of light available in the scene. In your case, it doesn't seem to be working properly. So the night vision feature actually still works - if you want to manually toggle it, that will still work. But for some reason, the sensor isn't picking up on an accurate light level, so it's getting confused and not switching to Night Vision automatically.
Possible causes we've identified in the past might be: a light across the street that shines directly into the sensor, or maybe having the unit surrounded by objects or walls that are too close. That's why I suggested trying with an angled bracket, because that can resolve both potential issues.

- Davey D.
Community Development Manager
SimpliSafe Home Security

10 Messages

8 m ago

I have observed the behavior of the doorbell camera for a while now and just want to add a few observations in case it can help the dev team. The issue, as suggested before, is that the camera gets "stuck" in daytime mode. I find that this happens more often when an event is recorded in daylight right before the sun sets. Subsequent events can continue to record as if there were daylight and never switch to night. The camera will stay stuck like this indefinitely (for days even) until I toggle Auto off and on again. Recently, I also put some Christmas lights up around the front porch. When the lights are on, the camera records in daylight mode. When I turn the lights off, the camera will often fail to switch to nighttime mode even though the scene is black. Toggling Auto off and on restores function. I've experienced this with two doorbell cameras.

2 Messages

7 m ago

I am having the same problem and quite frankly am pretty disappointed, particularly with the customer service part.  I have had the SimpliSafe home alarm for many years and recommend it all the time, so this issue with the doorbell is upsetting.  I contacted Customer Service and the person I got was totally useless.  Basically did nothing, didn't trouble shoot system (said it was because it was daytime & couldn't test the night vision).  Didn't offer to check for updates.  I had to ask for a replacement.  But from what I have read on here, doesn't look like it will make a bit of difference.  Ready to send everything back and try Ring.

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

I'm very sorry to hear about your experience. I mentioned in my reply above, but a possible cause might be with the lighting within view, so that the light sensor in the device isn't able to properly detect that it's dark enough to switch to night mode.

 

If your replacement device ends up having the same problem, we might have to consider trying different positions, or even just different angles for your video doorbell. We do have a horizontal angle bracket that can turn your unit 15º, if that helps.