August 23, 2023

How Long Should Security Cameras Last for My Business?

Video security is a crucial backbone in restaurants and convenience store establishments. Managed video software helps with loss prevention, human resource, brand equity, operational excellence, and so much more. With that said, owners and operators rely on recorded or live video to answer questions or provide important details in various situations. But, what happens when the video being recorded is fuzzy or unclear? Should you replace your security cameras?

Visual comparison of a before and after of a security cameras view

Security Cameras in Restaurants or Retail Need to be Clean to Perform

Checking the cleanliness of your security cameras can be accomplished easily through a network video recorder (NVR). If the image appears unclear or blurry, a simple wipe of the dome should be sufficient to restore clarity.

It’s important to note that the cleaning needs of your cameras may vary depending on their location and positioning. For instance, outdoor cameras may accumulate pollen or dust if situated in a low-wind area. Clean cameras according to where they are located:

  • Kitchen cameras should be cleaned twice a year. 
  • Outdoor cameras should be cleaned 2 to 3 times a year, depending on weather and location. 
  • Cameras located inside where debris is at a minimum should be cleaned about once a year.

In order to clean the dome cover, it’s recommended to use a gentle microfiber cloth with an ammonia-based cleaner or a mild soap and water solution. Additionally, you may choose to utilize compressed air to effectively remove any dirt or dust particles from the lens. Once you’ve completed the cleaning process, you should immediately observe an improvement in the video quality on your NVR system.

Clean, Old Cameras Will Never Match New Cameras

Generally speaking, cameras will last anywhere from 5 years on up, keeping in mind the technology is only 20 years old.

According to Dixon Security, good security cameras can last 10 years or even longer, although it is not recommended. A new, current IP camera should last 2 NVR cycles. An NVR cycle is typically between 3-5 years.

As with cell phones and other video software, camera technology continues to improve year after year. 

  • Digital family photos taken five years ago pale in comparison to those taken on the latest smartphone. Your in-store video system is no different. 
  • Aging analog cameras will not give you the same crisp and clear images as newer higher resolution camera options. 

Envysion recommends 1080p resolution to produce a high-definition, high-quality video.

  • Therefore, 90+ days of video retention on-premises will be available at high resolution on an NVR.
  • Higher resolutions are also supported for specialized use cases, like 360-degree cameras and areas where greater detail is desired.
  • Replacing analog cameras with IP cameras will capture crystal clear video.
  • Proper camera configuration will optimize both video quality and storage space on an NVR system.

Fuzzy Security Cameras Are a Choice

Overall, keeping cameras clean will help in the clarity of the video and they will last longer. Depending on your video security needs, you may opt to keep the analog cameras on-site or upgrade to the new IP cameras or even the multi-sensor cameras. Although cameras may occasionally malfunction due to technical issues or internal technology, ultimately, the presence of blurry or fuzzy video is avoidable

Envysion supports the highest quality video in the industry. Our solution is unmatched for video quality if properly installed and maintained. 

  • Native resolution: Envysion video player streams at native resolution (unlike other solutions). 
  • No distortion: Envysion does not clip camera views or stretch images to fit a constrained aspect ratio allowing for full visibility.
  • 4K Resolution: Envysion fully supports up to a 4k resolution, based on the capabilities of your cameras. 

For more information about camera clarity from your NVR, contact us to chat with a specialist.

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