Using a Blink Camera Outdoors

The Arkon Adhesive Case is Perfect for Using a Blink Camera OutdoorsThe Blink Home Security Camera System is a nice inexpensive completely wireless camera.  The wireless aspect translates to not having to worry about plugging it into the wall.  The camera runs on internal batteries that last up to a year.  So you’re ready to use your Blink camera outdoors?  Not so fast.

The Blink camera isn’t made to be used outdoors.  This is disappointing.  Since the camera doesn’t have a power cable, you would think it would be easy to make it waterproof.  Arlo figured it out with their Arlo Smart Home Security Camera.  That’s one of the Blink Camera’s competitors.

The Blink camera was built for indoor use.  Blink themselves do admit that customers have successfully used them in protected areas such as under an awning or on a covered porch.  They say as long as it stays dry and within the operating range of 32 to 95 degrees.  They go on to remind all Blink owners that the camera is not waterproof and any exposure to moisture or temperatures beyond the stated range will void the warranty.

So let’s try to figure out a few things.  First, we need a way to use a Blink camera outdoors and have it be highly portable so that when the temperature range is about to be exceeded, you can take the camera inside.  The mount that is provided with a Blink camera is a screw on mount that isn’t designed to be quickly and repeatedly moved.  After all, you are screwing it onto the wall.

The second thing to think about is how to keep the camera dry when it’s raining.  Perhaps a case.  We’ll get to that in a second.

The last item to address is theft.  I’m in New Jersey.  Things walk.  Simply leaving something out in the open isn’t the best idea.  You want to make it at least a little difficult to steal.  Heights help.  Put it at least eight feet high.  They’ll need a ladder to get it.

You can also use Spanner Screws. There aren’t a lot of people walking around with a screwdriver that is going to match a spanner pattern.  It’s got two holes at the top.  A Phillips screwdriver isn’t going to fit nor will a slotted bit.  You need a Spanner Pattern Screwdriver.

Here in New Jersey, we rarely exceed 95 degrees in the summer so I’ll just worry about keeping the Blink camera dry.  In the winter, we routinely drop below 32 degrees, so keeping the Blink camera outdoors during the winter is probably out of the question.

So we have a few ideas on how to use your Blink camera outdoors.  The Arkon Adhesive Motorcycle Gas Tank GPS Mount gets you around the rain issue.  That’s what is in the photo that accompanies this article.  As the description says, these attach to a motorcycle’s gas tank using Very High Bond (VHB) adhesive.  However, it can be used to hold other stuff too including a Blink camera outdoors.

The case comes with a clear lens so that you can see your phone.  In this case, the clear lens means that the Blink camera’s lens can see what’s outside.  There are foam pads included that you will use to get the Blink camera up tight to the clear lens.  The case zippers closed.  There is a port on the bottom of the case that can be used to run wires.  There’s no wires with the Blink camera so point the port downwards to help keep things dry.  The included case is weather resistant.  It’s not waterproof.  So if you see a massive rainstorm coming your way, take the camera inside.  But if it’s a light rain, you should be ok.

The next opportunity for using your Blink camera outdoors combines the previously described mount with the 8″ Heavy Duty Flat Surface Metal Mount with Dual T Adapter.  The back of the weatherproof case just described has two slots on the back.  This mount has two tabs.  They fit the two slots.  Adhesive doesn’t work on every surface.  Especially stucco or siding.  This bolts onto a flat surface.  There are multiple adjustment points to allow you to get the best angle.  Screws are included for mounting.

One more idea is to use one of those plastic outdoor outlet boxes.  One with a clear door and large enough to fit a Blink Camera outdoors.  The BUD Industries Plastic Outdoor NEMA Economy Box with Clear Door measures 5-7/64 x 3-59/64 x 2-3/4 inches.  That’s large enough for a Blink camera.  There is a clear door with hinges.  These are made to use outdoors.  A good use is to pop a Blink camera within it.

So there you have a few ways to use your Blink camera outdoors.  Just remember that the cases aren’t waterproof so you still need to keep an eye on the weather and take action when there is severe weather in the forecast.

All of these articles are written by someone (me) that figured out how to do this stuff the hard way.  I have owned and tested dozens of cameras.  Manufacturer support varies.  There are a few good companies that provide timely answers when you have questions.  There are several that sell you the camera and seem to have little interest in post sales support (which leads me to finding out stuff the hard way).