I connected the solar panel to my Arlo Camera. Based on the icons showing, it is clear that the solar panel is connected properly.
The first time the power dropped below 100%, it immediately charged the camera until it reached 100% again. After that first time, it does not automatically charge. I have 2 options. I can unplug the panel from the camera and then plug it back in, or I can go to the app and restart the camera. Either of these tasks causes the camera to go into a charging status and continue on until it reaches 100%.
Again, once it drops below 100% later on, it will not automatically start to charge unless I do one of those tasks.
Is there a setting I am missing or is this a known issue?
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I don't have the transcript to give you, but it was something along the lines of:
Me: This started after the new app update.
Arlo: The app update won't affect hardware, it's only new features.
Well, my two cam's on solar panels charged to 100% initially. So far, in the last two days, and one night... they're down to 97% each today. I expected them to lose charge faster than that, as has been the results in the past when charged with AC transformer. To be honest, there haven't been a whole lot of videos made on either one, as there has been little traffic for them to record.
Icon on the desktop view shows that the panels are still recognized on both of them. I'll keep all informed if the charge drops drastically with no evidence of recharging by the panels. I initially was hoping that I was going to be the outlier in this scene.... that since I forced my system to update to the newest version before I connected the panels, I would have somehow evaded the problems everyone else has suffered and could say I discovered a work around to the problem.
Guys, appreciated your input but telling Arlo the Solar panel charging issue is related to the App update is only confusing the issue.
I haven’t updated my app and even so when I don’t even use the app the problem still persists.
Theissue is the firmware update pushed out back in November (this impacts hardware) not the app update or version.
What confuses the issue are names used interchangeably... software, hardware, firmware, programming, app.... what the hell?
Software, app, programming and firmware aren't all the same thing?
Hardware... that's the camera, solar panels and the like.
If everyone isn't on the same page, we're just talking past each other.
I'd say a programming change has to be the cause of all these issues we're all of a sudden suffering from.
I chatted with Arlo support today for a couple of hours. @Bajathree, I am not clear after my chat why I need to use a new user ID to continue this conversation in the community message board. I have in my chat transcripts that Arlo Support admits that the issue of the Solar Panels charging the various cameras is not the actual solar panels but the November 2022 firmware update. They understand the scope of the issues are impacting hundreds of Arlo customers and that they do not have a proposed schedule of when the firmware update will be made available. They have stated in writing that they will email me when the firmware update will be launched. I requested that they inform the various Arlo trouble shooting experts, so that they don't waste the customer's time (asking for serial numbers of solar panels, cleaning panels, swapping new panels, resyncing the devices, unplugging, switching out batteries, verifying firmware, and software versions, etc.)
I know it is not much of a consolation, but Arlo knows it is on them. I encourage my fellow community members having the solar panel recharging issues to chat with Arlo support and push them to prioritize getting the new firmware update out sooner rather than later. I would also encourage all of you to negotiate a credit for your subscription until the issue has been resolved. I wish I had better news, and that Arlo would have been more proactive and started a recall process similar to the automotive industry. I guess we will be climbing ladders for the foreseeable future, be safe everyone regardless which hemisphere you reside in 😞
I cancelled my Arlo subscription after much consideration. A few issues just didn’t sit well with me, namely:
- Taking a long time to fix issues such as this solar panel one. A lack of communication and customer support. Having to disconnect and reconnect the solar panel cable often is not ideal.
- Having a foreign transaction fee added by my bank on to each Arlo payment ($14.99 AUD) for the Australian subscription. This could be 2 or 3%. Haven’t seen this with Netflix or other subscriptions. Must be due to Arlo charging from outside of Australia.
- Providing a bare bones offering for the local storage option. I know there is incentive for Arlo to push customers onto a subscription, but this seems extreme considering the cameras aren’t exactly cheap for most consumers.
- Automatic firmware updates which cause issues and have the ability to render devices obsolete (ie. EOL topic). This will factor into my decision when shopping around for my next camera system. Not to mention the end of free cloud storage for Pro/Pro2 and other devices coming up.
So, they update things through the app... so, your app is the medium that allows the cameras to operate and record video.
It's all the same thing.
If it's not, explain your answer.. how are software, firmware and the app they operate through not all the same animal?
I'm just saying that it's the software/firmware/app newest version that the problem stems from.
Us accusing their programming of causing issues is correct.... them denying it via technical jargon: saying "well, it's not the app" and not finishing the sentence with "but the words firmware and app are interchangeable because the firmware is embedded in the app, but since you didn't accuse the firmware of being the issue, we can't agree that you're right". It's like they know what the problem stems from, but they're not going to admit we're on to something because we're not using the exact right phrase...
Do you see where I'm coming from. We're all in the same boat with the same problem which started at the exact same moment, but using 3 different names for where we think the issue arises from.
Just read the end of life (EOL) agreement and it is brutal. I have about a dozen Arlo Pro 2 cameras connected with Solar Panels (4 separate systems) paired with my Ultras. Per the EOL, Arlo will expire the Arlo Pro 2 cameras in January 2024, that’s right a year from now. Imagine all our investments in cameras, panels, and hardwire installations (especially when the newer cameras having different charging chords from new model to new model) expiring every four years. What a waste of material that impacts the environment from lithium batteries to the films in the panel. I understand that things don’t last forever but an EOL on products that last only four years and at a tremendous cost for their cameras compared to the competition ? When Arlo takes this business approach then it forces all of us to look at their competition.
@RegularJoe Please stop this nonsense. You are NOT helping. You are the only one confused about the terminology. Let me try to briefly explain….
1) Firmware is the software code that resides on the camera itself (ie: not part of the app). It allows the camera to function automatically without human intervention (ie: detect motion, auto adjust brightness, flicker adjustment, detect solar panel, accept charge from solar panel etc.)
Now the App is software that humans use to interface with the camera (ie: change settings, turn on/off, change video modes, change what happens when motion is detected, give you information on the camera etc.). The App software is NOT firmware.
Your cameras will operate on a daily basis even if you do nothing in the App, they will detect motion, charge, LED light on, detect sound, even update firmware! This is nothing to do with the App (or web interface) this is controlled by the firmware installed ON THE CAMERA. And this is where the problem with the solar panel charging issue resides. In the firmware on the camera, not the software (or programming if you like) in the App.
I have 5 ARLo Pro 4 cameras that are 6 months old. I have had this issue since i first installed them. 4 of my cameras are on my roof so I have to keep climbing up on my roof whenever the charge gets low.
I found the way to get the panels to start charging the cameras again. I'll post it here, and I might make a whole new post about it because this one is so long, the cure may not reach all that need to see it. And this also proves that you don't need to spend the extra $20 to get an Arlo panel.... 3rd party works just fine. The panels are not the problem.
Ok.... I've got 2 (Wasserstein) solar panels connected to cameras. Today, this is the 3rd or 4th day that the panels have been connected. It took them a day and a half of overcast weather to charge the cameras initially. After the initial charge, the cameras refused to take a charge... no "charge" icon.
Today is bright sunlight, so time to experiment.
On Cam 1, I went into settings and turned "off" the camera, and let it set for about a minute, gave it enough time for the signal to reach the camera and power it down, or so I thought. Then, I clicked the icon and turned it back on. Watched for the battery charge indicator on the screen, and nothing happened. I gave it a minute just in case there was a delayed reaction from the system/camera. Nothing, just the battery level icon.... as usual.
With no charge indicated, I turned it back off and let it set for 3 minutes this time, then turned it back on again...then waited a bit longer to see if the panel came back on line.... and nothing.
After that failure, I went back to the settings and went to the "restart camera" button. Clicked that, and let the process of restarting begin... and about 20 seconds later, the camera restarted.... and the battery charging icon was displayed!!!!! It worked!!!
Next camera. On it, I skipped the "turn off camera" step and went right to the "restart" button. It did it's thing, and 20 seconds later was back on line... and the "battery charging" icon was illuminated!!!
Both cameras started out at 93%, and charged all the way to 100% before the sun went down.
To sum up this experiment, turning the camera off didn't accomplish anything, but "restarting" it caused the camera to accept a charge again.
I expect this will work with all the other styles of cameras.
The restart process is what I have been using also for the past month or so. I had mentioned it before but it may have been in a different post.
These cameras are so buggy that I've made it a habit to restart them weekly to ensure they stay working without issue.
Well, I'm here to tell you it worked. Twice.
Let's look at some possible scenarios why it isn't working in you guys' instances:
Maybe Arlo branded solar panels are the problem? (No way I believe that the panels themselves are the issue. Panels are dumb, contain no electronics that I'm aware of...maybe a voltage limiting circuit...maybe? They receive sunlight, they put out voltage/current. I bought Wasserstein panels that they said were specifically designed for Arlo Essential Spotlight cameras. They offer panels for other styles of Arlo cameras, so I don't know if other cameras have different connectors or require different voltage)
Maybe this workaround only works on Essential Wireless Spotlight cameras and none of the others?
Maybe it has to do with the version of the hardware & firmware of my cameras?
My cameras' particulars are VMC2030AerH9 and 1.090.30.2_24_499b975 and app 4.0.3_28510
If the ‘fix’ is to restart the system on a daily basis when the sun is out, then as a customer I would say that is an unacceptable level of customer service. Arlo firmware and software updates should go through a rigorous beta testing with the various set ups the customers have to iron out the bugs. I’m certain, since Arlo can determine which cameras are connected to solar panels, at least 20% of the existing customers have this scenario. To automatically implement the firmware, I am sure none of us had an option, and then the customers need to develop a work around is not a common business practice. It sets a precedent for future updates 😞
Oh, I agree 100% that it's a piss poor business model, leaving customers swinging in the wind, forced to endure poor performance of an item that should have had all the bugs worked out in advance, not on the fly.
That said, I'll settle for "restarting" them every week or so versus climbing a ladder to access my camera that's 20' up the side of a telephone. Until they figure out something, this will work ok for me. My busiest cameras will go a week or more before I used to have to take them down and charge them. I can live with clicking an icon to force the camera battery to take a charge once every week or two.
Now I wish they'd reinvent the wheel and restore our ability to delete masses of viewed videos out of our "feed" instead of only being able to delete one at a time.
Both of these cameras started charging all by themselves this morning. It is cloudy, overcast and raining at the moment.
- I did absolutely nothing to get them to charge, it was automatic.
My Arlo Pro 4 stopped charging by solar panel in late November 2022. This camera had been in operation since early 2022. I climbed up a 5 metre ladder to investigate and disconnected and reconnected the panel and voila - it started charging. However once it reaches 100% it stops charging, the sun symbol 'greys' out and the camera slowly discharges. I purchased an additional Pro 4 and solar panel in December 2022. The same thing happens. Once it reaches 100% charge the symbols 'greys' out and the camera discharges with use. It does not recharge despite us having a number of spectacular sunny summer days. I have read in the Community pages and noticed that numerous other users have experienced the same "no recharge once 100% is reached" problem following the firmware update on 15th November 2022 reference VMC4041P 1.18.080.4_52_ec35062. I have tested both panels on the two Pro 3 cameras I have and they charge and remain charging perfectly. I contacted Arlo support yesterday and tried to resolve the problem. I was happy to return the new Pro4 camera and pay the difference for an Ultra camera as it is clear to me that the firmware issue is the problem and there is no way that I am climbing to the top of a double storey house to disconnect and reconnect the panel every time the camera discharges with use. The support person said they can only change "like for like" ie: another Pro4. This would not fix the issue as a replacement Pro4 would still have the same firmware problem. I have two Pro 3 camera's, three Pro 4 cameras (the one connected to mains power works perfectly) and a DoorCam. That's six Arlo cameras. My issue has not been resolved and I will be reporting the matter to the Australian Consumer Affairs Commission as the two solar powered Pro4 cameras are not functioning to specification following the firmware update. This issue has been experienced and documented by other users.