CCTV - A Household Gadget

CCTV is a relatively new gadget in the market aimed at enhancing safety and security measures. It is a closed-circuit television which is also known as video surveillance. Video cameras are used to transmit a signal to a specific place, on a limited set of monitors.

Of late, almost every other person has CCTV installed. CCTV in the recent has become a very common household/commercial gadget, which can be seen in individual houses, apartments, schools, shops, malls, small eat outs, big hotels, restaurants and bars, religious places, party halls, parks, jewellery shops, theatres, roads, etc. With increasing crimes, there is more need of being vigilant at all times, an all-round surveillance is becoming a necessity. This is where the CCTVs come to the rescue.

With technology advancing, there are more features added every now and then. Every new feature has its own unique property and value. It certainly is helpful to have CCTVs with better and more advanced features. But then as is the case, more the number of features, more the reasons for the CCTV to get spoilt, wider are the reasons for problems to occur. Irrespective of the number of features, either more or less over time due to the usage pattern even the best and expensive brands also could pop up with some or the other problems. Some of these problems could be a rare occurrence and some problems more frequently or commonly. Each gadget comes with its own set of regularly encountered common problems. Some problems are gadget restricted, some brand and type restricted.

As is the case with any electronic gadget with prolonged usage, due to the wear and tear the gadgets are bound to get spoilt. Same holds true for the CCTV also. Let us go through some of the most common problems encountered with the CCTVs.

Most Common CCTV Problems

Most often the problems with the CCTV could be a very small and simple one or something big and complicated, but either ways it requires a thorough technical evaluation to figure out the problem and then solve it. There could be many kinds of different problems witnessed by the individuals, but these listed here are the most commonly noticed problems. Let us have a look at these.

1.Flickering CCTV video

CCTV video flickering is one of the most commonly seen problems. CCTV video flickering is generally caused by interference, it could be due to incorrect installation, malfunctioning equipment or issues with power supplies, or even bad ambient conditions. Sometimes the problem resolves on its own, nevertheless the footage needs to be monitored for a while as it could be an intermittent issue.

2.Live feed not working

Of the many benefits of the CCTV, one of the most important and useful benefit of the CCTV system is the real-time access to the live video of the designated premises, but often faulty wiring or inadequate power supply limits the CCTV images to non-real-time images. Nevertheless, the problem can be fixed by a good technician.

3.Issues with PTZ and dome cameras

It has been observed that more than often the PTZ and dome cameras have issues with poor movement of camera or camera views with blind spots and lapses in security. It is also noted that sometimes these CCTV systems record too much and could be a hindrance to the privacy of the third party. With the help of the technicians with good knowledge into these, it can be fixed by calibrating and adjusting the cameras for blind spots and privacy settings.

4. CCTV Camera not working at night

This problem also features among one of the most common CCTV problems. In this problem, there is no image or video during the night time. A thorough evaluation to check if the camera has power and if all the wires and cables and connections are fully secure should give a clear picture of the problem. If the infra-red light is off and not illuminating even then this problem could occur.

5.Faulty hard drives and recorders

Every part of the CCTV is interlinked. Smooth functioning of the CCTV is possible when all the parts are connected correctly and are working in the best condition. For the CCTV to perform well, it is quite essential for the CCTV system’s hard drive to be fully functional along with a working backup drive too. Unfortunately, most often due to the connectivity issues, USB stick corruption, software errors, and memory issues there could be faulty hard drive and recorder problems.

6.Horizontal lines on CCTV video

Commonly, the main cause of horizontal lines in CCTV videos is the light source coming in the way of camera directly. When the light falls directly on the camera, then the video feed transmitted will not be clear and might have horizontal lines. When the cameras face extra or over bright light then the camera pixel gets overwhelmed. The horizontal lines that are witnessed could thus be attributed to the electrical interference of the light sensor. This could be rectified, though, either by reducing the amount of light or changing the angle or by using the dome camera which has a dark shell.

7.CCTV is not streaming on the mobile app

This again, is a commonly faced problem, though new. This could be due to router problem, internet issue, problem with the phone app. It could also be due to change in the IP address. This problem nevertheless can be set straight by checking for internet connections, settings of the router, solving the phone app problem or checking for the IP address.

8.CCTV Camera's DVR not recording

DVR not recording is one of the regularly witnessed CCTV problems. If the DVR is not recording anything despite the CCTV camera working fine then the fault could be the misconfiguration, shortage of storage space, issues with DVR components. By fixing these the DVR recording could be enabled.

9.Black and white images

The above problem of black and white images could be due to inadequate light or less power. Sometimes, if the camera is in shade or in dark area then it may display in the night vision mode. This problem is also very commonly encountered in the CCTV. This can be fixed by adjusting the sun shade and also repositioning the camera in a brighter well-lit area.

10.Camera's video is choppy

CCTV footages are a crucial evidence in case of any eventuality. Even otherwise, if the footage is not clear the purpose of installing a CCTV is lost. It is important for the CCTV to deliver sharp, clear footages. At times, the reason for choppy footage could be poor lighting conditions or the CCTV settings not set correctly resulting in the CCTV images that cannot be used. This is a very common, but major problem. It requires capable technicians to relook into the issue and if need be then to calibrate and optimise the CCTV system to perform better and display clear footages of the best quality.

11.CCTV camera shows a black screen

CCTV camera displaying a black screen is one of the most commonly noted problems. The CCTV camera feed displaying black or no picture could also be due to malfunctioning of the firmware or some problem with the firmware. The firmware needs to be updated on a regular basis if not then the device may show black screen or no feed at all. The technician will be able to better help with the issue. Updating the firmware helps to resolve this issue to a great extent.

12.CCTV camera footage is noisy

It so happens that at times the CCTV footage is very noisy and unable to deliver the feed accurately. This could generally be due to electrical or RF interference. Like with the issue of flickering, the interference sources should be checked and eliminated. All the connectors, cords, cables, wirings, USB, etc., should be thoroughly checked for damage. This thorough check is even more necessary for analogue video cables.


Every gadget irrespective of being the most expensive or being the best brand faces some or the other problems which is quite common. CCTV is no different. There are some very common problems encountered with the CCTVs too. Certain problems are common to certain variants or types of CCTVs. Irrespective of the type or brand both major and minor problems are witnessed. The CCTV problems are not limited to only the above listed problems. There certainly could be many more varied problems. These are the problems which are commonly observed or noted by the users and hence feature under the most common CCTV problems. These problems could be due to overuse, improper connections, wrong settings, bad or insufficient or over light, certain weather conditions interference.

Though rare, most common problems could sometimes have nothing to do with any technical issues, but due to issues like, dust settling, weather changes, incorrect angle of light or shade, spider web being formed, light pollution. There could be many other factors such as voltage drop or voltage fluctuation or faulty wirings or connections, too much or too less light.

Though the above listed common problems of the CCTV is not the exhaustive list of problems encountered, but covers almost most of the common problems encountered in the CCTV.

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