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Winter Wonderland Security (Part One): Weatherproofing & Selecting Appropriate Materials

Posted on December 4, 2012 by admin There have been 0 comments

Weatherproof materials in a security camera is extremely important. Without this, an otherwise useful surveillance system will be wiped out by horrendous weather conditions. Thousands of dollars will be potentially saved by making sure you have the proper equipment to handle a beating by ice storms, snow, and heavy winds.

Some materials are not good at handing extremely cold conditions. For example, many people complain about battery life in cold weather. Since energy is produced by heat, batteries are not able to function as effective in colder temperatures since a large amount of the heat is being whisked away. LED screens crack when used in conditions below freezing. A cold camera introduced to a suddenly warm climate will have issues with water condensation. For a surveillance camera, this is a sizable issue since water droplets will negatively affect the display, in most cases rendering the surveillance footage useless. If possible, cameras places within a climate-controlled area would be more effective for cheaper cameras without weather resistant features. This would include a position near a window or glass within the lobby. However, many cameras come with features to protect themselves. It is important to study what kind of features a camera comes with before making a purchase.

Plastic becomes frigid and fragile in cold conditions. Simply moving or bending a plastic object will result in shatters. When considering a surveillance camera for optimum security in the winter, a metal exterior would be the best choice.

Conditioning For Snow, Ice, Sleet & Heavy Winds

Weather conditions damage and break property, and your surveillance equipment is no exception. Maintaining your equipment will make it last longer and ensures it will not fail to operate when you need it the most. Places which are vacant within winter months like summer vacation houses and offices or businesses taking a few days off are especially susceptible to crime since there is a limited amount of people within the area. Since your surveillance system is picking up the slack, keeping it in the best condition possible will allow it to do the job well.

Ice & Snow

Check every area for potential flaws before it starts to get too cold. If your system uses wires, make sure every wire is sufficiently wrapped with an outer coating. Make sure your wires are installed in a location where ice will not harm them. For example, the ledge under a drainage pipe for the roof of an office is an effective ledge for a camera to get a bird's eye view of the parking lot below. The camera's wires are able to be harmed by a leaking gutter. This is because snow will melt, and once the temperatures drop during the night, the water will turn into ice. This can get into every nook and cranny, and will damage your surveillance system over time. Cameras are also able to be damaged by large amounts of snow. If you are in an area that gets a lot of snow coverage, make sure your cameras are appropriately outfitted so the heavy snow does not cause any damage.

Preventing & Treating Rust

Rust is also detrimental to the health of your surveillance system. Oxidation is the source of these problems. As metal slowly oxidizes, it is rusting. This means the metal is being eaten away. While extreme cases of rust is unable to be restored, rust is able to be removed, prevented, and halted. A common treatment for removing rust is to use a bit of sandpaper in the afflicted area. Sanding sponges are the easiest to use in tight or contoured surfaces and spaces. The coarseness of sandpaper necessary needs to be considered. If there are only a couple of spots of rust, a finer grade of sandpaper will do the trick. However, large damaged areas will require a courser grade. There are also a variety of chemical rust removers available. These chemicals remove rust with the chelation process. The chelation process uses chemicals to hold on to particles of iron and bind them together. This results in a stronger bond within undamaged rust. These chemicals are able to be used for repeated incidents until the iron oxide is too bound to be effective. Lastly, prevention is worth an ounce of cure. Simply painting over components will provide a barrier between the raw metal and the elements. Wax can also be used to seal the exterior, much like polishing a new car.

Water & Heavy Winds

Your camera should be placed in an area where water is not going to affect it. The most common place is under the roof, ledge, or interesting architecture provided by the building. Any surveillance camera that is not placed within these areas will become damaged over time. Therefore, it is best to make sure your surveillance camera is waterproof. If possible, protection should be provided for your camera. Lastly, cameras are often knocked over by heavy winds. To avoid your expensive equipment from shattering in the parking lot, make sure every bold is firmly fastened and there is nothing close by that could break off and knock into it. The most common example would be signage or advertisements outside of a business.


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