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System drained batteries in all cameras, original Arlo, while apparently doing a firmware update.

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Laserdude
Star
Star

While I'm out of town my system goes down (this is security?) with all cameras showing not connected.  The batteries in all five cameras were depleted.  When I put in fresh batteries each camera showed that it needed a firmware update.  After doing the update each camera connected to the base and now all are working.  

 

What did Netgear do to me?

 

Thanks

 

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station
TomMac
Guru Guru
Guru

Prob after the FW update, the cameras lost connection to the base... when a camera loses sync, it expends power attempting to ping the base and batteries drain 

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Laserdude
Star
Star

Thanks..  Is there some way to control FW updates so that I don't loose security when I am out of town and loose $40 worth of batteries?

jguerdat
Guru Guru
Guru

How do you know it was a FW update that caused this? That likely would have caused more than your system to have an issue. And, no, you can't control when updates are pushed.

Laserdude
Star
Star

I don't know what caused it but I think TomMac's suggestion of the FW update was a strong possibility as every camera needed an update after I changed out the drained batteries.  I have never had anything like this happen before so I'm looking for ideas as I don't want to loose my security system while I'm away.  Do you have any ideas?

 

What I know for sure is the batteries were all in good shape when I left on a trip.  A week into the trip and all of my cameras are showing offline, security gone!  When I returned home I had to replace the batteries in all 5 cameras and do a FW update on each.  Now the system is working properly.

 

I lost security while I was out of town and it cost me $40 in batteries.  Customer service was its typical no help so I have turned here.  

TomMac
Guru Guru
Guru

It also is possible that the base was lost due to a quick power outage... when things come back up the router sometimes comes back up quicker than the base and the base is unable to then link in...end result is same.

 

Many that use the older units use a UPS that powers the base unit and router for short times to when these things happen.

Or others have used a Wemo outlet to toggle the base off/on which allows it to re link into the router.

 

As a side note, I do recommend the tenergy rechargables for the cameras as tho they last half as long, they save a lot of money over time.... Or even use some of the third party ac power adapters for the older cameras if indoor.

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jguerdat
Guru Guru
Guru

Since the cameras all needed an update when brought back online, it seem unlikely that an update caused this - the update hadn't occurred. I suppose the update failed on all cameras but that seems like a stretch.

 

The last update for the 3000 base was September 28, 2020. The last update for the cameras was April 22, 2020. To need an update now implies some other issue.

Laserdude
Star
Star

Thanks for the responses and ideas.  Not being able to pinpoint the cause leaves me with concerns but I understand how that can be difficult.  It is the first time I have ever experienced this so I'll cross my fingers and move on.  The dates of the last FW updates is also concerning.  I'm wondering why my cameras all needed the updates as they are constantly online except for the recent hiccup.  

jguerdat
Guru Guru
Guru

Have you verified that what's currently loaded on the cameras and base are what's listed in the Firmware Updates section here?

Laserdude
Star
Star

I cannot find a Firmware Updates section.

I now have one of my five cameras not connected.  It's late so I'm not checking it out tonight.  Very frustrating!

Laserdude
Star
Star

Shouldn't I get some notification that a camera has gone off line?

 

TomMac
Guru Guru
Guru

No notifications sent,  you can only see if a camera has gone offline from the main screen...

 

BTW, firmware version is found at;   settings/devices/pick camera/ under device info

 

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Laserdude
Star
Star

Thanks again but I know how to find the firmware version on my camera what I do not know is what is the most current.  Jag listed this "Have you verified that what's currently loaded on the cameras and base are what's listed in the Firmware Updates section here?  I'm looking for the Firmware Update section as he mentioned.

 

Also, the camera that went off line is down to 2.92 to 2.99 volts.  There is something wrong here.

jguerdat
Guru Guru
Guru

AT the Community Home home page, scroll down to Featured in the Community and click on the Release Notes arrow or use View More Discussions and click on the Firmware Release Notes.

Laserdude
Star
Star

Base station and cameras were all up to date with the firmware.  I guess that would be the case as when I replaced the batteries and they reconnected to the base they all went through a firmware update.  The base station received an update yesterday.

 

Since the firmware updates are automatic why would all of the cameras not have updated?

 

Why have I had one camera already drain a batteries?  It was only triggered a couple of times with less than two minutes of recording.

 

Thanks for your help but this isn't making any sense to me.

 

 

Minburn57
Apprentice
Apprentice

Welcome to the world of 'Arlo' . . . . 

 

(5-year 'vet' of the system)

 

I put considerable $'s into this 5 years back and have 'never' had confidence in this system after about the end of the first year of use (oddly enough . . . my first year was fairly good with performance . . . ).  Since then, periodic and unexplained loss of connections - and checking my network 'always' Arlo the only devices doing so.  And then the periodic acceleration of battery depletion that at times is absurd (ex. a recent example, two weeks for 2 cams when using batteries from two different suppliers).  System at my end seems to be hit and miss the last couple months. . . . . well . . . nothing too new there with that . . . . . 

 

I simply decided never to invest another dollar into the system or brand but continue to feed it batteries, try to keep it functioning as best I ould, all the while realizing that you couldnt ever rely upon it with utmost confidence.  When it fails completely, I'd replace it with something much better, but with semi-retirement coming on now and much more time at home, less of a concern with that security that dogs, trail cams, a shooting range out back and this intermittent Arlo system seems to provide.

 

All in all, for the past few years I've always suggested to people to avoid Arlo.  Its simply unreliable.  And that is the key consideration for a 'security camera system'.

 

Got to a point I even stopped talking about it much any more . . . . . Read the forums . . . its all there for anyone interested.

 

Backing up a bit in this particular thread re: battery use, an uneducated but very user informed nod toward that suggestion that when Arlo cams lose connection, significant battery drain until the cameras can get back online and most of the time when you are physically there to reconnect all.  If you're not home, they'll drain until dead (or whatever voltage renders the camera basically inoperable and unable to even connect any longer.

Laserdude
Star
Star

Thanks for your comments Minburn.  I am also a long term vet of my Arlo system and my experience has been similar to yours.  This is the first time I have experienced all five cameras draining their batteries at the same time and like you I'm just trying to milk out whatever I can get from the system.  I cannot continue to put in new batteries whenever the system decides to eat them so I was hoping to find a solution.  As you can see I have had responses from two "gurus" but neither has solved the problem.  I'm still waiting.

 

Minburn57
Apprentice
Apprentice

Good luck.  Again, I stopped asking/looking a while back as I was getting beyond frustrated with 'Have you rebooted the system?  Have you rebooted your router?  Have you . . . '.  Those questions are good early on, but when it becomes chronic and so obvious that despite a 'system' in Arlos telling you that you have a good connection, the camera disconnects happen and they struggle to get linked to the base station.  No good answer over the years for that.  And to top it off, it isn't consistent i.e. at points, it simply gets better and gets connected.

 

Again, good luck.

TheOldITGuy
Aspirant
Aspirant

Disconnected the base today and threw it on a shelf, done

Laserdude
Star
Star

That's not a bad idea OldITGuy.  I was able to get all five cameras back up and working and then one discharged its batteries again so I'm not using it.  I have often thought that the cameras mounted around the eves of the house were a decent deterrent and that's about as good as it's going to be.  

Throwing the base station on a shelf would definitely relieve a lot of frustration.

 

But, I'm still waiting for an answer as to why I had this problem to start with and then why I had one camera discharge again.  Can anyone help?

Thanks