How to Install Security Cameras: All the Types With Ease

Brad Smith - Editorial Staff

Updated: October 20, 2020

Owners concerned about their safety and family have a lot of options today. In particular, when it comes to surveillance. The market is flooded with options for both inside and outside the home. They only have to make the right choice when it comes to the equipment. And where to place it. Read this guide on how to install security cameras to be informed about the process in 2021.

What’s the Cost?

There is no defined cost for security. Instead, there are dozens of providers out there in the market. And all of these have many plans and packages to offer. So, the installation can go from very cheap or free to pricey in 2021. That will depend on the features and specs of each one of them.



This is the most convenient for people with a low budget. Or for those who like to do things on their own. Most vendors today offer a DIY setup to make it easier to buy and use. And also for those who are too busy to start waiting for an expert to come home and install it.

Security Camera Installation for Pros

But there are also premium services for those who want to pay for a security camera installation. Other big brands offer the process for free, though the price, in general, tends to be expensive. On the good side, the owner does not have to do anything. On the negative, the house has to receive a stranger at a time that may not be so convenient.

When and Why?

When choosing the place for the camera, it’s crucial to know its goal. Some people will have to deal with burglars and thieves. But there are some others who only want to know who is going around the house. Maybe keep an eye on the kids. Or see if the pizza has arrived yet. So, this should be taken into account when placing the devices inside or outside.

Place Security Cameras

Where to Place Security Cameras: Outside or Inside?

There is no black or white answer as to where to place security cameras. It also depends on the type of building a person is living in. For example, if the owner has a big house with a yard, he might want to know if a stranger is coming near. So, he or she ought to place the cam outside. But if the idea is to see what kids are doing, then knowing how to install security cameras inside is better.


When working inside a building, the process is much easier than outside. The person, for example, does not even have to consider the weather. Because of the rain, the snow, or even the heat, can end up ruining the security camera installation.


  • They are easy to maintain
  • Not so much dust, dirt, or pollen
  • These are usually much cheaper
  • They do not need such a big range or angle
  • If they are wired, they can work anyway


  • Some will require drilling
  • The walls inside the home might be affected

Guides for Placement Indoor Cams

Take into account the following tricks when setting indoor cams up.

They can turn a nightmare into success.

  • Don’t ignore corners. Installation can be harder here. But owners will benefit from a larger field of view. And with a greater range.
  • The lamps and light, in general, are not allies. It can wash out the footage. And make it impossible to know who or what is in front of the lense.
  • Mind the windows. Similar to the sunlight, widows can produce reflections. So, the quality of the image will be poor. And that serves nobody.


In this case, it can be hard to find the perfect spot. Also, they tend to be much pricier than the previous type. Mostly because they have to resist more things. But, on the good side, this type of device will last more.


  • Can include doorbell or garage alarms
  • They can have a small field of view
  • Can be hidden or not
  • They tend to have better batteries
  • More weather-proof


  • They have to be placed with strategy
  • Not the best wireless connection

Guides for Placement Outdoor Cams

It might be hard to decide on where to put the camera at times. And then to figure out how the security camera placement and how to install it.

Let’s see some tips regarding this topic, so the process is easier.

  • Put them high. They have to be out of the reach of criminals or thieves.
  • Be careful with the sunlight. It can blind people, sure, but the same applies to devices. So, make sure that the lenses aim at what they should. This way, they will capture only the best images using DVR.
  • The owner needs to decide. They can either keep it hidden so nobody can check or tamper with it. But there is another option. And that is to have it visible.

Three Types of Camera: Are They the Same?

Now, people can find three main categories in the market. One of them is the wired type. Here, the camera relies on wires, of course, to connect and work. And to be plugged into electricity. The second category is wireless. This means that they can work using the WiFi connection of the home. But, at times, they require a wire to function. And the last one, wire-free, does not need any of these cables at all. They work with a battery to power them without a security camera installation.



Most owners with large homes tend to buy wired equipment. Mostly because some people still believe they are more reliable than others. As they do not need the Internet to function. When it comes to cables, there are two main types. One of them is Ethernet, and the other is POE. The location of outlets is crucial for this security camera placement.


  • They never run out of batteries
  • Very reliable without being wireless
  • It’s simple to keep them hidden
  • These systems use DVR
  • Cables are easy to find in online stores


  • A pro needs to set them up
  • Have to be placed near an outlet


These cameras are a bit easier to install outdoors. As there are no wires, the person can do it on their own. They do not even have any tools to set them up. Regarding differences, the only one refers to how data is transmitted. In this case, it uses Wi-Fi. But some of them might still need to be plugged into an outlet. Some others, instead, use batteries.


  • The home security camera installation is easier
  • It usually has access to the Cloud
  • The connection is stable and also use DVR
  • Do not require a lot of tools or prep to get started
  • They are cheaper


  • They still require a cord as the power
  • The Internet might crash, reducing protection.


Finally, a wire-free product will not spend as much as the other ones. For example, they will not need DVRs to record the footage. To have it available in the future, users only need to check the cloud. The equipment, most of the time, comes with a plan to have more space available. Another positive thing is that they do not need power or electricity to work well.


  • These strike a good balance
  • Those who rent can put them up easily
  • If there is a power cut, they will still record
  • Storage is usually in the cloud without limits
  • Pricing is convenient and doesn’t need DVR


  • They rely too much on the Internet connection
  • Owners should check on the batteries regularly

Steps for Installing a Wired Security Camera

Wired equipment can be the hardest to install. Owners have to juggle with cables, and those cords should be able to reach the plug.

Follow these steps, so it’s even simpler.

  1. Look for the perfect spot to put the camera. The wall needs to be strong and stable. If not, it might fall down and break.
  2. Find the tools that a person needs. Some people will require screws or other things. While some others only have to tape the device to the wall.
  3. Try and see whether there are wires already.
  4. Before drilling, it’s wise to mark them using a pencil.
  5. Just put it on the wall and pass the wire.

One thing that buyers should not forget is the way of working. Does the device need an outlet or not? If so, then they need to be placed near one. But if they work with a battery, then there would be no issue at all.

What Type of Storage Is Better?

Today, this service usually offers 2 types of storing the videos. The first one is in the cloud. That is, using Internet services. But there are still some other clients who choose the traditional method. Maybe because they like privacy and convenience. For example, they will not have to pay extra to store more video. As it’s in the case of the cloud. So, those who want to use local storage have some options:

  • Micro SD cards that go up to 64 GB.
  • DVRs or NVRs are also great, reliable options.


So, it’s possible to choose among different alternatives. And it’s also crucial to protect the camera, so it doesn’t break down.

Best Places to Install Home Security Cameras

There are many places to install home security cameras. But not all of them are the same. Or are optimal to have these devices on the wall. Let’s examine each category in detail. And help owners make an informed decision.

Best Places to Install

Interior: The Main Places in the House

Not only rooms should be monitored. But common areas as well, like the kitchen or the living room. This way, the person will protect them from strangers. But they will also keep track of what the children are doing. Rooms with big windows are dangerous, so they need more surveillance.

Don’t Forget About Staircases or Hallways

The house is not only a room. Instead, the criminal can move around by entering through the yard. But the owner can still catch him or her by putting cams in the hallways. These should try to be hidden at all times. So, nobody will be able to tamper with them.

The Front Door Is Important

Though the front door is the obvious option, criminals still use it today. So, it’s important to protect it. Also, this place will keep a record of every person that goes into the house. Be it family, the delivery man, or the babysitter. So, the owner will always know what is going on at home.

Side Doors Should Be Considered

Some houses have remote doors, or old ones that owners forget are there. These pose a risk to the family, as visitors might try to break into the home without being detected. So, if the owner wants to know everything about who goes in and out of the property, then every door should have its own device.

Consider the Garage

Garages not only contain vehicles like bikes or cars. They usually guard sports equipment, tools, grills, and other things very dear to the owners. And these places are usually detached or remote from the main home. Keeping a watchful eye is then essential to have all these things safe.

The Yard and the Surroundings

Keep tabs on anyone walking around the building. This will come in handy in case there are robberies in the area. Because the device will identify anyone suspicious.

Areas You Should Not Install a Security Camera

No matter how much people want to be safe, there are places that should never have a camera. Mostly because these cameras go against somebody else’s privacy. Or the video systems are illegal. Let’s take a look at some of them in detail. This can be helpful not to have legal issues in 2021 or in the future.

Areas You Should Not Install
  • Parks and shared spaces outdoor. Don’t bother neighbors with cameras or systems. Plus, these areas can be hard to monitor because each state has its own laws. Any person who wants to install them should contact their local association and see if they are doing it right. For example, some states will allow a person to have a camera that points at the neighbors’ house. But only at the public, street-facing part of the home.
  • Any place where others don’t know about the surveillance. Don’t record audio or video or connect cables without people knowing about it. It’s illegal in almost all times and places. Keep it in mind for the home security camera installation.
  • No bathrooms or bedrooms. Though parents might always be concerned about their children, there are two places that should keep their own privacy. These are the bedrooms and bathrooms. For obvious reasons, there should not be any video camera here. In case a father wants to monitor his baby, the best option is to buy a baby monitor. Or to acquire motion or glass break sensors for the bathroom. This way, no person will feel observed. But space will still be protected.

Remember This Before Installing

There are some things to consider before installing and getting started. Let’s examine them in detail to save some time and pain to owners and new clients.

  • Do not get fully started without testing. At times, it can be time-consuming to put the camera to the wall. In particular, if it’s high in the air. So, make sure everything works as it should. Does it have a full battery? Does it display all the range that it has to? Are there any white or dark areas that hinder sight?
  • Try not to alter the equipment from the original form. It might be tempting to add other features. But keep in mind that they might ruin what has been bought.
  • Have all the things clean and without dust. It can be harmful to the lenses and other parts of the cam. And don’t forget about pollen for the outdoor ones.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How Much Does It Cost to Install Security Cameras?

    On average, it costs $1500. Though the range also goes from $100 to $200. But, at times, it costs nothing. Most of the companies out there offer a free set up by the hand of employees. Yet, today it is a rising trend to make the equipment easier to install. And to give clients the option of doing it on their own. So, the setup is DIY, and it is free of charge. The customer does not have to pay anything extra to get started, then.

  • How Long Does It Take to Install Them?

    Though it depends on the model, the average time for installing this equipment tends to be between 4 and 6 hours. Some cameras need a pro installer. That is, they will require an employee to come to one’s home and do their trick. If not, they will not be able to put it to use. But there are some other models that are DIY. So, any person that does not have any special tools or anything can get started with such equipment. And in a very short time without affecting the security camera cost.

  • Can I Install Cctv Outside My House?

    In houses, yes. One can do that if the park is owned by the same person. If not, there are some states that ban CCTV from common property. That includes corridors, balconies, and other parts of buildings not inside the flat. In case any of these people decide to set up one of these devices, the Housing Board will have to approve it. If not, they will not be able to set up a CCTV.

  • Do These Cameras Record All the Time?

    No. It depends on the type of product. Some of these devices will upload the videos to the cloud only in case of an event. Or if there is a trigger. Instead, there are wired ones that will record for more hours. And even for the whole day. But, for that to happen, the owner needs to set it up. And to give strict directions. If not, the footage will only appear when needed.

Get Started With Cams Without Risk

All in all, it’s clear that having a cam adds up to one’s personal safety. And the type of device the person needs depends on the skills and time owners have. If reading about systems and their setup process makes their head hurt, then they should hire a professional. These persons can also help future customers to buy the products they need the most. For instance, they will know how Wi-Fi or the cloud works in terms of safety.

And will not be able to make so many decisions about when or where to place the security devices. On the good side, most brands offer this service for free to their clients in 2021, which means that they don’t even have to think about how to install security cameras.

Editorial Staff

Brad has worked as a sales manager in the security sector for 10 years. He is curious, attentive to details, and hard-working. He has dedicated several years to helping customers with their safety and protection. His background has helped Brad to write comprehensive security and life safety materials, which he has been writing for about 4 years. Brad has contributed work to The Washington Post, DailyJournal, Los Angeles Times, and many others.