High temp issue?

Set up(bought on amazon prime day, have all been installed about 2 weeks) : 9 XT3 outdoor cameras. 2 sync module 2’s. 5 cameras on 1, 5 on the other. Cameras and modules on their own wifi, a very powerful router. Modules are both about 2 feet from router. Cameras all have full 3 bars of signal to the wifi, and modules. all 9 connected to solar panels each having 2 18650s batteries in them, so power shouldnt be an issue.

Issue… Its cold and wintery here in New England. I am having 3 cameras going offline. Then popping back online on their own. Currently its 28 degrees here… 6 of my cameras… are showing temps in the 40 to 45 F degree range. The 3 cameras that keeping going offline…when they come back… are showing temps are 90 degrees… and stay around 90 F.

Any ideas? Return them/exchange? Call support? I expect that these cameras are faulty? That temp cant be good.

I am thinking about subbing out one of the easy to reach “hot” camera with the 1 spare I have left from the 5 kit i have left, and see what the temps are.

Any other testing ideas?

Thanks for any advice!

Did you do the bench testing and let them run inside your home for a few days on brand new energizer ultimate lithium batteries? Or did you just expect them to work perfect and wip them up outside with the cool neato solar powered setups?

If you did the latter, you now have a new testing idea to try out. Bench test inside. Always do this before real go live installation. While you’re at it, always record each camera and sync module serial number. You will need that down the road - just a matter of time. Make a chart, spreadsheet, table etc. Camera 1, location, serial #, battery install date, etc.

Now ask yourself, are you testing and installing a security/home monitoring device or are you installing a toy. Do you want it to work or do you just want it to work half ■■■? Going over the top and doing charting as well as bench testing first, makes troubleshooting later soooooo much easier.

  1. Yes I had them all operating inside on new batteries for 60 hours, before installing them outside. They were working fine. I did not note any of temps though, as I did know at that time, I should of been looking at it.
  2. Yes I have a pic of each serial # on my phone, with the name of each camera edited into the pic, as well as a spreadsheet as a back up.
  3. They have been working flawlessly untill last night and today. Roughly 2 full weeks.

Only real difference is it got cold and it snowed a little last night. But each camera is in an external case, and under a small over hang.

Joel, Joel, Joel. :roll_eyes:

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You know how it is. Get the conversation going and then the details come out. It’s a ■■■■■ typing in the whole story on round 1.

In any case, test them inside again with new batteries. Still don’t work, get an RMA number for warranty exchange. Somebody has to suck it up and buy the new stuff.

You may not believe it, but I tried to include all the info I could in round 1.

I got to take one down before dark, and the cold. I have put new batteries in it. I will test it on the inside.

I took my spare 10th camera, and put it up where this one was as a test as well.

Also, once the sun went down, the other 2 cameras temps came down…

I am theorizing that maybe…those 3 solar panels, maybe be faulty, and over heating the batteries inside… but just a guess at this point…

more testing to come.

If the temperature went down after the sun went down, perhaps it’s more likely that it’s just the sun heating the black cameras, unless the sun was not incident upon them. I assume it is, because you’re using panels. If it is, use a black thermometer, nearby to see? Black absorbs most of the incident energy, and the temperature goes up, so it could explain it, if they’re on the sunny side. Put a blocking card infront of one and see what happens? See if it does it on a dull day? Bunch of ways to confirm.

For your indoor test, power it with the solar panel anyway. The panel’s battery will run things, without sun, but you could have a bright light to power the panel too. Measure the output voltage from the panel to confirm it’s 5V.

Blink cameras take the internal batteries out of the circuit when USB power is provided, so if the batteries are getting hot from an ‘in spec’ USB power source, the Blink camera(s) is/are faulty, but that seems unlikely to me.

Thanks for the thoughtful response sutty! Here are my thoughts.

  1. Todays high was 45 F. Since the cameras have been up, we have had days at 80 F. So if it was the black getting hot from sun exposure, I would think, it would of happened on these days as well.
  2. Each one of these cameras has at least one other cam, getting about the same amount of sun exposure, and those cameras did not get hot at all… which was why thinking it was more of a panel failure, then a camera absorbing sun heat issue.
  3. I took the batteries out of the camera, per the solar panels instructions. So there has been no internal battery inside the cameras for about 2 weeks. So its not the batteries in the camera getting hot(theres none in there) . I too assumed the “temp” reading these cameras give was related to the batteries (probably because the reading is right next to the battery “ok” line), so thats on me for thinking that. So the temperature its giving is supposed to be some sort of external temp I would assume.

I like your solar 5v test. I will take one of the suspect panels down tomorrow at test that.

Looks like we wont have any sun here til wed/thur… so I may not get a chance to test my theory on the panels, until then.

As an update to the camera i took inside. It has been working fine with batteries in it. Registering all motions it should. recording. Live views. Temp never getting more then a few degrees above room temp (73).

I have 6 XT Gen 1 in Mn. They run at 20 below zero F for 3 winters. This year will be their 4th winter.

That solar panel, check it’s voltage output when it’s cold outside. If it’s falling below 2.8 volts, it may be the problem. I know when energizer ultimate go below 1.3 either battery, camera fails. Usually 1 battery low, other battery ok.

That camera that is now working inside with fresh batteries, put it outside and keep it on those batteries. If it motion detect fails, I’d vote for failed camera

Mother nature did not comply today, for me to test much. Its poured here all day. Heres what i was able to test/figure out.

The weird acting camera, once taken down, acted fine on batteries inside.
The camera I put up in its place on the solar panel, acted up, as soon as it was on the panel.
I put the original camera back up on batteries only, and working fine. Live view, motion, clips, etc.
The test camera, back inside, off the panel, and on batteries, also working fine.
So… looking like the panel. I suspect the other problem cameras are panel related too.
Guessing these panels are just poor quality, or just not right for the newer blinks, even though they had good reviews on amazon.

May look into other panels…( I can still return these)…or switch to batteries…was just hoping not to. Switching out 10 cameras batteries, every X amount of months, doesnt seem ideal.

Are/were the panels directly facing the sun, at midday, and did they have chance to fully charge the included batteries, before deployment. Do you know if panels are an effective solution in your location. For example, I would be very surprised if they were anything better than useless where I am, in the UK. I noticed before, when reading up on Blink suitable panels, that the requirement for sun, was way more than could ever be hoped for here, at least in Winter. Lucky if it is ever sunny, let alone getting a good few hours per day. At the winter solstice it would only be effective sun for a few hours, with the panel appropriately tilted, and only that if it didn’t rain, or snow, or was just generally overcast and miserable, which is the normal state of affairs.

First amazon link I came to for Blink solar panels:

“* CHARGER FOR BLINK XT XT2/BLINK INDOOR OUTDOOR CAMERA: solar panel for blink security camera, direct sunlight a few hours of every day would keep your blink cam charged around the clock; No more hassel of battery changing”

Note, it clearly says, a few hours of sun, every day. Simply not gonna happen here!

Quite honestly, I think you got stuck on the idea that temps are what is screwing up your camera. Running on solar power or USB does not charge the camera batteries. As it doesn’t charge them, it can’t overheat them. If the external power quits, those internal camera batteries act as the backup power.

Another problem with the temp indicator is it’s a holdover from the original white indoor camera from FOUR years ago. There is no indication anywhere that this temp indicator was modified/upgraded to be useable and accurate for outside temps. Many of us know however the outdoor cams run just fine from 20 below to 120 above. Lots of reports of this here over the years. Cam runs fine, but temp indicator is false. The temp indicator and alarm is if your HOUSE is too hot or too cold. Again, indoor cam feature.

Regarding the solar panels with built in battery pack, again you have to measure voltage output. You’ll find it probably varies and gets too low to run the Blink cams. Measure with an accurate digital meter. Those analog needle meters wont cut it. You need to see tenths of a volt. I’m thinking 2.6 volts will be the fail and 2.8 will still run ok.

Why London Fog brand rain jackets are so popular in USA.

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It will have to read 5V, and nothing other, bar a tenth or two, and also whilst under load. This has nothing to do with the internal battery voltage. This is the standard for USB. If it is 2.6, it is almost half the USB standard, and the voltage regulator in the Blink camera, to bring it to the operating voltage of 3V, or thereabouts, will not work.

  1. It was a beautiful week and weekend I installed the cams and panels. They sat in direct sunlight, not hooked up to anything for 2.5 days. They easily got around 8 hours of direct sunlight each day, and probably another 6 the day I put them up. They got 20 plus hours of direct sunlight charge before install.
  2. These panels have 2 18850 2600mah batteries in them, as opposed to the usual 1. Thats why I chose them.
  3. 6 of my 9 cameras get easily 5-6 hours of direct sunlight. 3 probably only 2-3. ironically, those 3 cameras and panels have not had any issues at all.
  4. For instance the one I am trouble shooting…sun was shining on it by 8 am today, and will have the sun on it all day, until about 3pm. Much longer in the warmer months.
  5. Now the weather has sucked the past week. But I would think it would of effected all the panels, not just a few.
  6. My cameras also have few recordings every day… they avg about 5 a day, and currently set for 5 seconds. So thats 25 seconds a day.
  1. I only mentioned if for informational purposes/troubling shooting. It was the only thing I noticed different on the 3 cameras acting up. High temp reading, when it was rather cool out, and the other 6 were reporting normal temps. I was reporting it as a possible reason for camera issue (Was the camera heating up due to a faulty charging solar panel?) …not that I thought the temperature outside was causing any issues…
  2. I know the batteries are not getting hot, because there are no batteries in the camera. I took them out per the solar panel instructions on install day. I mentioned that in a previous post.

yes I need to test the panel, couldnt get it down yesterday, it was pouring buckets outside.

You don’t think rechargable batteries in the solar panel that arn’t charging anymore wont measure lower than 5 volts? Your 1st clue are solar panel LED lights for patios, decks, etc. The LED light dims when those batteries run low volt.

You don’t think the Blink camera on usb input wont operate at lower than 5 volts? Cheap voltage regulator circuits keep volts from going too high. I doubt they shut off power if volts is too low. Love to do my own testing but I’m retired and don’t have access to my tech goodies anymore.

I know that there will be a regulator in the panel, and I know it will output 5V to USB spec, unless faulty. When low, it may well keep going, though I doubt it, it will just shut off, even the batteries themselves have their own inbuilt cut off, very often, but, for the sake of argument, even if it kept going, the voltage regulator in the Blink camera, which provides a stable 3.2V, most likely, will require some overhead to do that, and will not be provided with boost mode, as it expects to see only 5V, so it only needs buck.

5V to 3.2V, is likely to be the end of its ability. Why would it need to do other? Anyway, I get why you can’t be bothered testing, I can’t either, and I have an adjustable calibrated power supply sitting on my bench right now, which I could dial to 2.6V in a second.

I found a new toy for you.

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An interesting update.

Since I have been working from home this week…(state mandate)…I can check on these a little more closely… and combined with… we finally are having sunny days…Heres what I have observed.

Almost every camera has acted up. (since i wasnt really accessing during the day (at work), i didnt realize how much they were.

Heres what I have seems to figured out.

While in direct sun(panel) , which I can only think would mean, max charging…The cameras basically wont work much during these times…

  1. Live view fails
  2. No motion detection
  3. If it somehow does record a motion, it then wont stop, recording over and over and over.
  4. Sometimes even drop off line.

As soon as the sun stops hitting the panels… the camera starts to function again. You can watch it happens as the cameras that get mostly morning sun…start to act normal, and the ones that get it in the afternoon start to fail… and the 2 cameras that get full day sun, act up all day (2 of the 3 of my original complaint)
And I have had little to no problems at night.

So I am starting to believe these panels are my issue.

The one camera I have on battery now (was on a panel, this is a test now), has worked fine off a panel.

So i guess these(panels) are going back. Maybe I will try a different panel. Or just go for batteries over the winter.

Are those ultimate energizers they came with the best to go with?

And when will that expansion battery pack be out??? :slight_smile: I know probably never :slight_smile:

Thanks for reading, suggestions, and help provided to trouble shoot.