Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Re: Battery Life on Arlo Pro 2

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AncientGeek Hero
Hero

I’ll test some things next week.  I can tell you that an Arlo Pro 2 on a normal Pro base station connected to a router gets comparable battery life to other Arlo wireless cameras.  In my experience, it is about 4 months.  However, it varies greatly by settings and the number of motion events the camera experiences.  Strong sun and cloud movements, moving branches, light reflections off bodies of water, bugs and spiders, normal human activity, etc. can all trigger the cameras excessively and burn through batteries. 

 

I also have had good experience with the Arlo solar panel keeping the batteries topped off...even without optimal direct sunlight.  The solar panels are only challenged by prolonged periods of below freezing temperatures.  Even short winter days don’t seem to be a big problem as long as temps are above freezing every so many days.

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
BBinAL Guide
Guide

CS called today and had some "questions from the engineers".  One of them was "Have you tried it with a standard Arlo base station plugged into your Nighthawk router (NOT using the router as the base station)".  I had not as, relying on the Netgear documentation, I purchased the camera stand alone.

 

My neighbor bought the Arlo Pro 2 system, including base station, and the Nighthawk router.

 

He is keeping his cameras plugged in all the time so set up to use the Nighthawk as his base station.

 

Therefore, he had a base station he was not using.

 

I have borrowed it and set it up on my system.  Last time I charged my camera, it was at 38% about 15 hours later.  I charged it up today just before installing with the borrowed base station.  I should know in the morning if the standard base station makes any difference.

 

I'll update tomorrow.

BBinAL Guide
Guide

Initial data is indicating the Nighthawk modem/router/base station is the issue.  I suspect it is because, as I was told, "We can't update the firmware without approval from AT&T".

 

Battery is at 100% this morning.  I'll continue to monitor it.

 

Frustrating thing is I bought the system thinking the Netgear modem/router/base station would work with the Netgear camera without having to purchase a base station.  I only want/need one Pro 2 camera.  The Pro 2 system with base station is only available with 2 or more cameras BUT you can purchase a Pro 2 camera by itself.

 

My next move, I guess, is to decide if I want to spend the extra money to buy an Arlo base station (~$80 on Amazon).  About the only thing the Arlo base station adds (besides appropriate battery life) is a siren.  I don't want or need a siren.

 

Other option would be to purchase a solar panel.  That's another $80 and makes repositioning the camera mroe difficult as I'd then have to remount the solar panel.

 

All in all, I like the camera capability.  Perhaps I'll see how long I can borrow the neighbor's base station and hope that Netgear Engineers will continue to work on this issue and eventually figure out how to make it work as advertised.  I've got a couple of days to decide before my return window expires.

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

The latter would be great, of course.  I set up my MR1100 yesterday.  I plan to set it up for Arlo when my extra Pro 2 arrives later today.  I suspect I’ll have the same battery experience you did based on your experience with two Arlo Pro 2 cameras and now the Pro 2 on a base station.  Hopefully Netgear will fix it, so I can use the MR1100 and Arlo as a travel system.

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
AncientGeek Hero
Hero

Also, I’m not sure the solar panel would keep up with the level of drain you are experiencing when connected to the MR1100.  It does great with a normal level of power consumption, but that is only a few percentage points per day.

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
BBinAL Guide
Guide

It is approximately 27 hours since I setup the Pro 2 with standard base station.  The battery says it is 100%.

 

I beleive this is showing me the issue is related to the MR1100.  In other words, my camera is not defective.  I also wonder if the first camera I purchased was fine.  If so, I feel somewhat bad that I returned it to Best Buy as defective.  Guess my excuse is that was the direction provided by Netgear CS at the time.

 

With the recent data, I don't feel returning the camera to Best Buy would be right.  After all, it is not defective.

 

I'm way beyond the return period on the MR1100.

 

This ball is now in Netgear's court.  I'll keep my case open and let them continue up the latter of support levels in hopes that they will fix it.  In the meantime, I'll continue using the borrowed base station and monitoring system performance.

 

I don't know if it makes any difference but I forgot to mention that, prior to setting up the standard base station, I logged onto my Arlo app and deleted the MR1100 Nighthawk Modem/Router/Base station.  Therefore, I know I'm running only off the standard base station.

 

Sensei michaelkenward Sensei
Sensei

 

This ball is now in Netgear's court.  I'll keep my case open and let them continue up the latter of support levels in hopes that they will fix it.  In the meantime, I'll continue using the borrowed base station and monitoring system performance.

 


I don't know about anyone else, but I reckon you deserve a medal for seeing this through to some sort of resolution.

 

You have uncovered a nasty bug that Netgear really needs to fix. Were they feeling grateful, they should send you a present of some sort.

 

 

 


Just another user
Arlo hardware: Q Plus, Pro 2 (X2), Pro 3 (X3), Security Light (X2), Ultra (X2), Doorbell, Chime
AncientGeek Hero
Hero

Well, I'm not having much luck with my test so far.  I enabled the MR1100 for Arlo and have tried syncing both a new Pro 2 and an Arlo standard camera I've had around for a while...with no luck.  I thought perhaps the Pro 2 firmware might be the problem, so I synced it with base station, updated the firmware and then removed it from the basestation and tried to sync it with the MR1100 again.  No luck.

 

I tried it via the Netgear Mobile app, via the Arlo app and via a laptop while tethered.  I even tried updating the MR1100 firmware, but it was reported as being up to date.

 

So I'm having even less luck with the MR1100 as an Arlo base station than you are!

 

I have not gone so far as to do a factory reset, but I suppose that could be my next step.  

 

 

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
BBinAL Guide
Guide

When I set up the Pro 2 with my MR1100 it was simple and connected the first time.  Picture quality was great.  My problems were all with battery life.

 

Incidentally, approximately 24 hours after installing with standard base station, the battery is still showing 100%.

 

I did have difficulty connecting earlier today.  It said my base station was not connected to the internet.  All the lights were on.   I searched this issue and found where others had clicked the "reset device" button.  Mine did not have that show up, only "remove device".  So, I powered it off and back on.  It rebooted and worked well.  I suspect that I'd just been out of luck had I not been on site at the time.

 

I hope they will fix these MR1100 problems.

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

I believe  the reset device button that little button inside the back cover of the MR1100 at the bottom.  I recall seeing something like that in there.  Either way, being away would mean you couldn’t get to it.  There is always a pull between security and convenience on devices like this.  Some actions we can perform remotely are one way doors that require and onsite visit to remediate.

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
BBinAL Guide
Guide

It was the base station that needed to be reset, not the MR1100.

 

The MR1100 has been functioning very well, except for the issue of and Arlo Pro 2 battery draining itself in ~24 hours if I use the MR1100 as an Arlo Base Station.

 

BTW, checking just now (system is using a standard base station connected to the MR1100) the Pro 2 battery continues to show 100% and live view works well.

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

Oh. In that case the base station has its own device icon in the Arlo app and if you go into settings and my devices, select the base station and look at the settings there is a restart “button” and a “remove” button.  You can restart the base station remotely ... no site visit required.  The wireless cameras only have the “remove” button.

 

Good to hear about your battery performance.  That matches my experience with all three models of Arlo Wirelss cameras. (I have no experience with the “Go”)

 

I wonder if my difficulty with syncing a camera to the MR1100 could be due to all of the other wireless RF I have here.  I already have two base stations, two wireless routers, four Sonos speakers and several wireless cameras from Nest, Arlo and Logitech...not to mention a few wireless networks from the nearby neighbors.  I have the MR1100 in low Wi-Fi power mode, but the cameras I’ve tried to sync have been 12” or less from the unit.  Perhaps I’ll try it at higher power and/or in some location where there is less RFI.  I could also reset it and start all over.

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
BBinAL Guide
Guide

@AncientGeek wrote:

Oh. In that case the base station has its own device icon in the Arlo app and if you go into settings and my devices, select the base station and look at the settings there is a restart “button” and a “remove” button.  You can restart the base station remotely ... no site visit required.  The wireless cameras only have the “remove” button.



My point was that THE BASE STATION did not show a "restart" button.  Just checked now and it does.  Yesterday, the app said the base station was not online.  I was looking directly at it and the lights indicated otherwise.  I tried to restart and teh restart button was not there.

 

I guess that there would really be no way to expect a "restart" option if the base station is offline as there would be no way to communicate with it.

 

You do have a lot of wireless devices.  I left my MR1100 on dual band and had no issues.

 

BBinAL Guide
Guide

Should have said "no issues connecting the camera."  Obviously, I had major issues with battery life.

Guru TomMac Guru
Guru

From the battery drain on the camera, it sound like the 1100 is some how keeping the camera active all the time ( like if plugged into ac )... interesting thread .

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Morse is faster than texting!
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BBinAL Guide
Guide

Got another call from CS today.  They wanted to know if I had been able to borrow a base station and try the system.

 

I informed him that I had and that it was working well.  He asked if I planned to continue using a base station and consider the issue "solved".

 

I told him that I don't own a base station, I'm just borrowing one and that Netgear needs to make their equipment work as advertised as I want to use the MR1100 and cameras without having to spend additional monies to purchase a base station.

 

He said he would pass the information to the engineers.

 

Sensei michaelkenward Sensei
Sensei

@BBinAL wrote:

He said he would pass the information to the engineers.

 


I have also passed this on to "the engineers" – the people who actually create this stuff – using a different communication channel.

 


Just another user
Arlo hardware: Q Plus, Pro 2 (X2), Pro 3 (X3), Security Light (X2), Ultra (X2), Doorbell, Chime
BBinAL Guide
Guide

Update:  The Pro 2 continues to have good battery performance when used with the base station.

 

Got another call from CS.  They said that the Pro 2 has updated its firmware since being connected thru the base station and they have asked if I would try it with just the MR1100 to see if the problem is solved.  If not, the engineers want to swap my MR1100.

 

I've tried to add my MR1100 to my Arlo account and it now will not add.  It added easily before I borrowed the base station.

 

This is frustrating and costing me a lot of time.  I'm about to the point of deciding the ~$70 spent on the base station might just be worth the time savings of trying to troubleshoot the issue.

 

CS plans to call me back tomorrow.  Will advise them I can't get the MR1100 to add to my account and see what they want to do.

 

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

Sadly, many of my decisions are based exactly on that issue.  Troubleshooting bugs takes a lot of time and energy.  I always make a judgement call as to whether the time spent will be worth it.  If I can go another direction or employ a work-around, I weigh the cost versus the agravation and often just chaulk it up to the "real cost" deploying these technologies.  ALL companies pass a certain number of failures on to consumers.  Some are better than others at making our experiences good more often than not, but no company makes them all great experiences, all of the time.  That's one reason I use cameras from three different vendors.  Each platform has pros and cons and each platform experiences difficulties from time to time.  Overall, I like my Arlo cameras for their strengths...and I use other cameras when they are better suited to the task or location.  And, of course, all of these platforms are moving targets as they evolve over time.  A weakness this month can become a strenght next month.

 

 

Good luck!

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

Make sure you remove the camera from Settings, My Devices before trying to sync to the hotspot.

BBinAL Guide
Guide

"Make sure you remove the camera from Settings, My Devices before trying to sync to the hotspot."

 

Well, that was my plan.  However, since I can't get the Arlo program to recognize the hotspot as a base station, it is kind of a moot point.

 

Thanks for the reminder, though.

AncientGeek Hero
Hero

He meant while still using the actual base station, remove the camera using the Arlo app from that base station.  That way the camera is a free agent.  However, your point is well taken for the next step.  Perhaps that’s what you meant.

 

i still can’t get my Pro 2 or any Arlo to sync with the MR1100. 

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
BBinAL Guide
Guide

CS did not call today.  Perhaps they are as frustrated as I am.

 

On a good note, the camera is still in the high 90s for battery life.  I think the only sensible thing to do is purchase a base station and move on with my life.

 

I do wish it worked as advertised, though.

Guru jguerdat Guru
Guru

The biggest issue is that the Arlo part of the hotspot firmware has to be released in conjunction with what's needed for the hotspot itself.That may introduce a lag compared to what the base station firmware is running.

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AncientGeek Hero
Hero

...and even worse, that coordination has to happen between Netgear and AT&T, not just inside Netgear.  

 

Since I can’t get my camera to sync and I know that once I do, I’ll have to wait for the battery problem to be resolved, I may return the MR1100 I purchased.  It seems like resolution could be quite a bit off in the future.

Model: VMC4030P| Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Cameraarlo.netgear.com | Web Site/App
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