Nest Camera Offline

Will Nest cameras work without Wi-Fi?


November 16, 2020

10 Nest Camera Offline1

Sleek cameras with crisp audio and video are a nice addition to your home surveillance plan. When Google rolled out its Nest cameras back in 2015, the cameras offered quality security solutions that have become part of the company’s smart home automation tools. Nest security cameras are a smart choice for home security. The basic cameras do an excellent job of capturing footage in and around your home, and the more expensive Nest IQ indoor and outdoor cameras come with even more bells and whistles like facial recognition.

Using Nest security wireless cameras in and around your home means you can monitor everything from the delivery of packages at your door to your dog roaming around inside while you’re away from the house. And because Nest is part of Google, the technology seamlessly integrates with other Google products like Google Assistant and Google Home.

However, if your Nest camera is offline, all that convenience goes out the window. Nest cameras rely entirely on Wi-Fi, and they won’t work if you don’t have access to Wi-Fi or if your signal is inconsistent.

Nest camera setup

The beauty of a Nest security camera is its streamlined setup. You’ll need your camera or cameras, your phone or tablet, and your computer. Follow the simple instructions for successful Nest camera setup:

  • Plug your Nest camera into your computer via USB cable

  • Follow setup instructions as prompted

  • Download the Nest app on your phone or tablet

  • Mount your camera where desired

Nest cameras require Wi-Fi to work

While some security cameras run off of Wi-Fi, cellular, or even a combination of both, Google’s Nest camera requires Wi-Fi to run and does not work with cellular backup. Wondering why your Nest camera is offline or why that Nest camera is not working? First, check your internet settings.

If you live in an area without any access to Wi-Fi, Nest cameras are not the right choice for your home security system. Wi-Fi access depends on geographical location and whether or not your home has the proper cables and infrastructure to support it.

If you have Wi-Fi but your reception isn’t great, a Nest Wi-Fi camera will work while the internet is working ... but that security camera will stop functioning when the Wi-Fi goes out. If you can’t figure out how to connect your Nest camera to Wi-Fi, you may want to consider a different type of security camera. You may find hardwired options more reliable, particularly if you live in a rural or remote area without a stable internet connection.

Why is my Nest camera offline?

There are several reasons your Nest camera may be offline. First, make sure your home internet is working properly. Pull up the internet on your phone, tablet, or computer to see if the internet works. Do you have internet, but it’s just too slow? It could signify a connectivity issue on your end, assuming you typically have reliable internet, or the problem could be on the end of your internet provider. Here are some things to check:

  • Restart your modem and router. This will also refresh any Wi-Fi range extenders you may have.

  • Check your modem, router, and internet settings. Firewalls, parental controls, and incompatible routers may be culprits if your Nest camera is offline. Check the Google website to find a list of compatible devices.

  • Perform a speed test on your computer or mobile device. A site like Speedtest or your internet provider’s speed test page can show you upload and download speeds of your local Wi-Fi. Slow Wi-Fi can signal a variety of issues, including area network congestion, too many devices on your internet, or even damaged cables.

  • Reach out to your internet provider to resolve recurring connectivity and speed issues. If you typically have good, reliable internet with your Google Nest Wi-Fi cameras, something else could be afoot.

  • Test your camera via your app or computer. Just make sure when you pull up the Nest app on your phone, you’re using Wi-Fi, not cellular signal to test the connection.

Other reasons your Nest camera may not work

Wi-Fi, however, isn’t the only reason your Nest camera may not work.

  • Is your camera worn or broken? Outdoor cameras, in particular, are more susceptible to the elements. As part of your home security protocol, check all your cameras every so often to determine if they’ve incurred damage from the weather.

  • Do you have the latest version of the Nest app? For security reasons, you may simply need to upgrade to the newest version of the camera’s mobile app. Check the Google Play or Apple store to ensure you’re up to date with your software.

  • Is something interfering with your connection? If you live in a 5,000-square-foot home, for instance, your wireless signal may not reach that camera located at the front of your property. Check and make sure your router or Wi-Fi extenders reach all your cameras, and adjust accordingly.

  • Has your camera gotten too hot or too cold? If your camera is in temperatures of either extreme, the Nest may shut its Wi-Fi off to protect your equipment.

How to reset a Nest camera

Everything needs to be reset sometimes. Unplug your Nest camera’s power cord, and wait 10 seconds before you plug it back in. A green light on your Nest camera signifies the camera is back online. As a last resort, you can try a factory reset on your Nest camera. Keep in mind, however, this will erase all the camera’s previous settings, and you’ll have to go through the process of reconnecting your camera to your home’s Wi-Fi. Before you perform a hard reset, make sure you save any video clips you don’t want to lose.

Alternatives to Nest cameras

While Nest cameras are a great way to protect your home, they’re only as good as their Wi-Fi connection. At Brinks Home™, our senior security consultants can work with you to determine what type of home security camera system is right for your situation.

Allison Clark is a senior writer for Brinks Home. She enjoys educating others on the benefits of smart home security and using technology to simplify everyday life.

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