Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras|NETGEAR
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Tutor

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Sad to say but I am still waiting for a satisfactory response from NetGear support to address my still recurrinf solar panel issues.  What a shame.  I have been on endless hold way too many times to get a new engineer since I cannot quickly respond to the one who helped me with my camera swap related to this issue.  Which, btw, he was really great to work with and actually had a clue as to what he was doing and what needed to be done in light of what I had already troubleshooted.  But I digress ...

 

In any case, since I had received the replacement camera that had been connected to one of the two suspect bad solar panels, it works perfectly for almost a month so far on a battery alone.  But once I plug in the suspect solar panel all bets are off.  When it was time to recharge the battery again and it was fully charged I then reconnected the solar panel only to have it give me that gosh aweful charging fault message again in just under two days.  Then it only took it about another 1-2 days to kill the battery (according to the Arlo app).  So I unplugged the solar panel, took the camera inside, plugged in the factory wall charger and it show status of about 80% (as it had done a time before on the old camera), then it recharges to 100% a few hours later..  I then place it back up and it now runs fine on just the battery alone.  At this point I am VERY leary to place the solar panel back on as it might damage the camera again, which is what lead the NetGear engineer to replace the camera in the first place.

 

My other camera with the solar panel issue has been showing the charging fault message every 6-8 weeks, it will stay up for about a day then magically go away until a few weeks later.  This is getting really old.

 

So again, I have been on hold seems like forever, multiple days, sitting in queue, and still not able to reach an engineer to get the solar panel replaced as the previous engineer had told me was going to be the next step.

 

I just hope that my other two cameras with solar panels that HAVE NOT been having issue dont start exhibiting the same charging fault as my two problem childs do.  I work each day as most of us do, and do not have time to sit on hold for hours at a time to get an engineer just to start again from square one.  Even when I have given them the case number in the past it is if they are told not to believe what I previously reported and to start troubleshooting from square one.

 

Either NetGear needs to fix this issue or maybe I need to start looking for another manufacturer whose product is designed on a more reliable level.  Heck, maybe NetGear does not care like they used to about customer satisfaction, because it sure does feel that way as of late!

 

Help us out here NetGear!!!

 

Message 276 of 298
Guru

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

A frequent issue with the outdoor power supplies (AC or solar panel) is not fully seating the connectors. Moisture can get into the connectors leading to the infamous incompatible error message. I've had it myself. These connectors (both ends for the solar panels) can be a real PITA to fully and properly seat them - you just have to take your time and work at it. It doesn't take physical strength, just persistence.

Message 277 of 298
Tutor

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Have tried that early on, multiple times with these two that I am having issues with.

IMHO they should not be that difficult to seat, even given they have the rubber boot on the connector ends.

If that is really an issue then maybe a redesign of the connector is in order, even though I realize that anything of that nature could drive up the cost since they are already a very expensive item compared to what else is on the market.

 

In any case, fully seating the solar panel connectors on both ends, as well as making sure there is no moisture in the connector has not resolved the issue.  As I noted earlier, I had the camera that was connected to one of these suspect solar panels stop functioning / charging altogether so Arlo support did replace the camera and it works fine as long it is on battery only and NOT connected to the solar panel.

 

If it really is nothing more than a connector issue then why is Arlo support not sending out some sort of notificaiton to all of its customers that use the solar panels mentioning a potential issue if the connectors are not fully seated instead of getting the long drawn out "try this" response from support.  Myself as well as others that have noted, tried everything that we are asked to try and in my case making sure the connectors were clean, dry, fully seated, with as much direct sun exposure at the proper angle as possible.  If I pushed any firmer to make sure the connectors were seated I am afraid I will end up breaking something them I will own the broken unit with no recourse.  If these solar panel connections are that hard to seat, then as I noted earlier there needs to be a redesign of how the power connector is made as it should not take this much effort to make a reiable connection.

 

In any case I keep hoping I will be able to have enough time to sit on hold and get another engineer on the line that will assist me in getting this issue resolved.  The money I have already spent with three base stations and nine cameras and four solar panels is no small amount.  I hate the thought of having to start over again with another manufacturers platform.  I just want what I already paid for to work as advertised and not have all these charging issues with these darn solar panels.

 

I dont think that is too much to ask of NetGear!

 

Message 278 of 298
Tutor

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

I had the same problems with my first solar panel after a few months of working. Netgear finally replaced the solar panel with a new one. Everything is working at the moment.

The Arlo oem solar panel and camera integration is unstable. Never know when it’s gonna fail. No sure sign of what the cause of the problem is. Netgear Support has no clue of what’s causing the problem. Netgear Support goes through the usual troubleshooting steps but nothing is resolved. The only solution is to get the solar panel replaced and hope for the best. Never know when it’s going to crap out again. Good luck.
Model: VMC4030 | Arlo Pro Wire-Free Camera
Message 279 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

You guys must be setting up your solar panels wrong, we own 5 of them and they all work.

Message 280 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

After receiving my last warranty replacement panel, I decided to try something.    On panel had never had a problem since original install date.   This one has been replaced mulitple time, but is mounted about 8 inches away from where the Power Company has they wiring from the road connected to this pole.   My wife suggested that maybe that closeness to the electricity was causing a problem.   I doubted it, but...........decided to move the panel around to the other side of the pole 180 degrees away from the electrical service.

 

This new panel arrived.  Installed it and it has been working for weeks now instead of a few days.   Coincidence?  Maybe.   But I think that is definitely what solved my problem.

Message 281 of 298
Tutor

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

All four of my solar panels are setup exactly the same.  Only two are not working correctly as noted previously.

It was a dry sunny day when the panels were installed.  Batteries on the cameras were each fully charged prior to installation.  Solar panel connectors were carefully connected to make sure both ends were fully inserted into the connectors on the panels and the cameras.  I also made sure that the rubber seals on each end appeared to be properly seated and not pinched in any way as to allow moisture into the connector housing.  They all worked perfectly well for a short period of time (few months initially) then out of the blue I started getting the charging fault messages on the Arlo app.  It then noted to reference the KB article yet never mentioned which KB article to check or reference.  Nor has support to this day confirmed which KB article I should have been referencing.  Kind of makes you wonder if the article does no good now so they just dont mention it any longer ( except on the charge fault message you receive).

 

In any case I recall reading where some have as many as nine solar panels and still have 3 or so that end up not working correctly.  As I previously stated, if these connections are that particular to hook up then they need to be redesigned to be a more reliable connector, such as a threaded connector with O-ring seals, etc.

 

I have been a network engineer for over 38 years and i have used practically every connector under the sun, both indoor and outdoor rated, but I have never seen the likes of this type of connector and the related issues that seem to come with it.  I feel pretty sure it was all about cost, as with most retail products, but in the long term I would not mind paying for something with a higher reliability factor than what we appear to be getting now with this current design.

 

It should not be this difficult and it just does not make sense ...

 

Message 282 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Thank you - no - it’s just the one camera.
I have three cameras and two solar panels - both Arlo Solar Psnels - one is working fine - the other just won’t charge - it keeps giving the message that it’s not a correct Arlo solar panel and I get the red zig zag line - I have had all the cameras for about four months! I have to rely on my neighbour charging the battery manually whilst I am away.
Model: VMC4030 | Arlo Pro Wire-Free Camera
Message 283 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Oh dear! I thought I was in for something like this - my neighbour is an Electricial Wizz and as I have been interstate away he. manually charges the camera fully - but once he reconnects it to the Solar it also only works for a couple of days then the dreaded red “zig zag” signal appears and I receive s message “not authorised panel connected etc” - thank you for all your reply I’ll try and sort it with an Arlo technician when I return - he also makes sure the connections are tightly inserted both ends - but I am finding it so very very frustrating because you buy something that you need to rely on for security and it lets you down! Cheers
Message 284 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

, thank you for your reply - yes the connected are tightly connected - (I’ve had them checked) it’s so frustrating as one camera with a panel works fine but the other camera where the security is the most required malf notions - frustrating! - thank you!
Message 285 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Do Arlo read all these posts? Of all these problems with Solsr panels?
There have been so very many replies to my original question?
I agree - it’s not a cheap system but it’s only right that it should work properly - without issues!
It’s just frustrating - cannot rely on
Thank you for your reply - I
Message 286 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Thank you for your reply - yes - seems the panel must be faultyas the camera works fine once charged!
Cheers
Message 287 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

That’s great - one of my panels works fine - the other doesn’t - thank you for your reply!
Message 288 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Thank you for your reply - everyone has been of help and assistance - I’ll check to see if perhaps the panel is receiving any interference as well -
Cheers
Message 289 of 298

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Easy solution:

Arlo removes piece of software code that prevents us from using "off-brand" USB charging devices.  Problem Solved!  LOL, except Netgear rather cheat you out of $40+ for a USB charger.  (for those of you not aware, the only reason we cannot use any USB charger we want, is because of software, not hardware)

...

I was planning on ordering two solar panels, until I saw this giant mess...

Message 290 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Just as a matter of interest - my neighbour has a solar panel with his Arlo and it’s working fine!
I find it so frustrating when I have connected all the “official” gear and it fails! The reason I installed the Solar panel was to enhance my security system- but it has failed!
Cheers
Message 291 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Hey folks...

Ok been doing alot of reading regarding the solar panels. 

 

I have 4 out and operating at the current moment.  However, I have had some difficulty keeping them charging when the internal battery cells go down.... like most eeryone else.

 

Personally, I belive more it is just from crappy cables.  I have had my own experiences as 2 of my 4 actually STOP charging during the day so by night fall, the batteries are dead'r than hell. 

 

Since it is early November in Colorado, i is cold at night... no sh%t ....

 

Someone had posted, they can't find the cable for from the panel to the camera.  This is simply a mini USB to mini USB.  Here is a link.  For $20 each

 

https://www.bestbuy.com/site/rylo-1-micro-usb-to-micro-usb-cable-black/6258119.p?skuId=6258119&ref=2...

 

Mind you, the release catches are not as "fancy" but that really isn't the issue, is it? But every other day having to replace batteries, in not so easy to reach areas???? come on now......

 

I will attempt to rplace the cables on my "unfunctioning / bad" panels.

 

 

Model: VMC4030P | Arlo Pro 2 Wire-Free Camera
Message 292 of 298
Tutor

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

So here we go again.  Since I raised cain on this forum back in mid september of this year about two of my non-functional solar panels I finally got a IM back from someone in NetGear support askign me to contact them to open a case whcih I did.

Case # 40504884 was opened and my contact was Alfred Expert ID.# 8329 Arlo Level2 Support.  So I think, now I am finally getting somewhere.  I call and speak with Alfred and after some discussions it is agreed that I need to have my two failing solar panels replaced.  I just need to submit back to him the serial numbers of the two non working solar panels.  I told Alfred it will take a few days as I have to get out the cumbersome tall extension ladder to reach these to get them taken down and pull the serial number.

So after about a week or so I finally got a moment to drag out the ladder and get the serial numbers needed.

So I go to the email link and send the two serail numbers only to find out that the email is from a No-Reply mailbox.

Therefore how am I supposed to send the engineer the information requested when the email does not accept replies.  Go figure that one out.

So I try to call again and finally get someone and gave them the case and the two serail numbers, and so far to date, No RMA information whatsoever from NetGear to get this issue resolved.

All I can say is ... What A Load Of CRAP!  I have never in my entire life had such sub-par support for a product that is surrounded by so much difficulty in getting an issue resolved.

The sad part is we just bought another 2-camera Pro-2 system a couple months back for our beach house just as I was trying to get this resolved back in September.  In hind site I probably shopuld have looked elsewhere for another vendor and I now see that NetGear's only objective here is to sell the equipment but not stand behind it.  I am just sooo pissed right now that I need to stop typing before I type something very unprofessional and down right UGLY!

 

All I want is to get this issue resolved because I am growing really tired of dragging out my laddeer to pull the battery down to charge it for these two locations that are not only difficult to reach but also get the bulk of foot traffic near them on my property so the batteries are needing to be charged much more frequently than the other four cameras, about ever 28-30 days which in itself is totally ridiculous!.  If NetGear is going to provide an external chargng solution for the PRO / PRO2 cameras, at least make the darn thing reliable so it performs the needed function.

I AM SO DISGUSTED !!!

 

Model: VMC4030 | Arlo Pro Wire-Free Camera
Message 293 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Likewise!!!! very Frustrating - after numerous phone calls - case numbers and being so so very disappointed I physically posted my faulty solar panel back to the USA about two weeks later I received a new solar panel (send from Chatswood Australia) which seems to be working ok!
I now have two solar panels attached to cameras and one connected to power.
Good luck to you - I like the product but it’s so frustrating when things go wrong -
Cheers
Message 294 of 298
JPC Prodigy
Prodigy

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working


@MotoRider42HC wrote:

Easy solution:

Arlo removes piece of software code that prevents us from using "off-brand" USB charging devices.  Problem Solved!  LOL, except Netgear rather cheat you out of $40+ for a USB charger.  (for those of you not aware, the only reason we cannot use any USB charger we want, is because of software, not hardware)

...

I was planning on ordering two solar panels, until I saw this giant mess...


Yup.. this whole mess was Arlo's genius way of planting that bug to prevent us from using a third party cable/adapter except it's also affecting their own cable/adapter.. All my cameras are setup plugged in thru AC with batteries inside using the orig. cable/adapter and I still get the "Charging Fault" error.. I can't imagine how you all deal with this when installed on solar panel.. I haven't had this error before until one day the catastrophic update Arlo made on Feb/March of this year and suddenly this "Charging Fault" came out of nowhere... Of course, back then this wasn't serious coz' no one else was experiencing it except me.. The threshold wasn't met yet.. LOL.. so they ignore this issue.. Now that more and more people are experiencing it.. Arlo still ignore this issue as a bug but rather it's a hardware issue so they blame their own product defective??.. Mind you I have 3-orig cable/adapter and they all went at the same time with an error "Charging Fault".. Seriously, suddenly those 3-cable/adapter defective??...Nothing was changed to my setup.. Go figure.. 

Message 295 of 298
Aspirant

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

Arlo Community Assistance
___________________________________________________________

[Base Station connection problems to the internet]

Try turning off all the cameras first, if you are unable to turn off the cameras using the Arlo Website, then you may have to remove the batteries and/or charging block from the cameras.

Once you are done with removing the batteries and/or charging block from the cameras, then pause for 5 minutes.

Next, turn off the Base Station and pause for 5 minutes.

Next, turn on the Base Station and pause for 5 minutes, you need to give it time to fully boot up.

Finally, return all batteries and/or charging blocks to your cameras and then turn them on.

- If the steps above do not work then the issue modem and/or router. If you have a modem and router, make sure the BRIDGE MODE is On in the modem.
- Check the ethernet cable from the back of the Base Station to the modem or router, make sure it is not damaged.

[Arlo Solar Panel not working, properly]
___________________________________________________________

First, make sure you fully charge your camera to 100%.


It is recommended that when you purchase the Arlo Solar Panel, make sure you test the Arlo Solar Panel connected to the camera while you are on the ground and when the SUN is present and warm enough first. If you see the lightning bold charge indicator, then the Arlo Solar Panel works fine.

 

Now, pay close attention this, because I learned this the hard way. Although your camera may be charging while it is connected to the Arlo Solar Panel, the charge may not be strong enough. You have to make sure the Arlo Solar Panel connection to the camera is ALL the way in, I mean when you look at the rubber seal on the connection, it must be almost halfway in the back of the camera and snugged tight and then using your Arlo App on your Smartphone, make sure the charge indicator is a lightning bolt.


You may be asking, how do you know if the charge is really strong? Well, since you asked, I will tell you.

 

If the SUN is warm enough and your battery percentage increased or maintained a battery percentage by the time the SUN rays were out of view (with the maximum is 100% of battery life). Your connection is good to go.

 

***DO NOT JUST JAM THE Arlo Solar Panel connection in the back of the Camera or you may bend the Arlo Solar Panel male connection and/or Arlo Camera female connection.***

 

For example, my camera before sunrise had a battery charge of 91%, I was using the live feed and it was on all day too, and by the time SUN rays were out of the cameras Arlo Solar Panel view, the charge was at 94%, it is working really good, the most important point I am getting across to you guys is, the battery charge percentage did not drop below 91%, if it had dropped below 91% then I may have to do the following:

 

- make sure the male part of the connection at the bottom of Arlo Solar Panel is snapped in tight

- make sure the male part of the connection from the Arlo Solar Panel to the camera is pushed in all the way, with the rubber seal should be almost halfway in the back of the camera.

- you may have to remove the charging block from the inside of the camera and make sure there is no debris or dust of any kind on the inside of the camera or charging block.

We own 4 Arlo Solar Panels and they all work fine, no more climbing up ladders, well at least once or twice a year, depending on the rain.

 

Message 296 of 298

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

I purchased my panels from Costco about 3 months ago. (I have 6 panels on a 10 camera, 3 light system) and I just recieved a replacement solar panel from Arlo because I was having similiar issues with one panel (and I now have issues with 3 more). BUT HERE IS THE BIG SURPRISE- I opened the box up that just arrived and the panel came with these new "wind brackets" that attach the cable in a much more snug fit to the camera AND a redesigned connector that attaches much more snug and sealed to the camera AND the new panel has a warning sticker on the bottom of the panel next to the cable that says to not disconnect the cable "or damage may occur". 

 

Unbelievable.. Basically, we all have defective units and Arlo knows it. Thanks Arlo! Heart Maybe you guys should issue a recall now and stop trying to charge us $ to ship you guys back these defective products and putting all of your dedicated customers in a horrible situation of dealing with your overseas customer support that are totally clueless.

Message 297 of 298
Apprentice

Re: Arlo Solar Panel not working

My story is I have one solar panel connected to one of my 5 Arlo Pro cameras. I frequently get a charging fault error during the day during our Phoenix summer. I haven't seen one since it has cooled off here. I did find out, though that the battery was charging even when a charging fault was indicated. The charge level was always 100% by afternoon. So, I just ignore the error.

Model: VMC4030 | Arlo Pro Wire-Free Camera
Message 298 of 298