How To Install a Surveillance System

How to Install a Wireless Home Surveillance System

As home surveillance systems become more versatile, less expensive and wireless, they’ve become more accessible for do-it-yourself installation.  Wireless surveillance ranges from a single camera for monitoring one room to larger, multi-camera systems designed as part of a comprehensive, whole-house security system. This project guide will walk you through the installation of a wireless surveillance system.


Many home surveillance systems are available as a complete kit with everything you need, including wireless mini-cameras, a monitor, a receiver and a recording device, typically a dedicated hard drive or digital video recorder (DVR).


Wireless systems can be set up for use with a professional monitoring company or may come with software that allows you to go online to monitor what your camera sees. If you plan to use a professional monitoring service, avoid compatibility issues by consulting with them before installing any equipment.




• Diagram your home and identify your camera locations.

• Read and follow the manufacturer’s directions that come with your system.




• Turn off the power at the circuit breaker to any outlets you will use to hardwire your cameras.




• Save money by installing your surveillance system yourself.




  • Camera(s)
  • Recording / playback device—a digital video recorder / computer hard drive dedicated to the surveillance system is optional
  • Dedicated monitor / cables to connect the system to a television / computer monitor

Step 1

Step 1: Mount the Camera Stand

Mount the Camera Stand  

1.  Use the camera’s mounting stand as a template to mark holes where you want to 
     install the camera.  
2.  Drill holes for the mounting screws, taking care that you don’t drill through any 
     other cables or wires hidden in your walls.  
3.  Attach the mounting stand to the wall or ceiling.  


Step 2

Step 2: Plug in the Camera

Plug in the Camera

1.  Connect the power adapter to the back of the camera and plug it in to an 
     electrical outlet.  
2.  Secure the camera to the mounting stand.  
3.  Aim and focus the camera on the area you want to monitor.  


Step 3

Step 3: Set Up the Monitoring Station and Recording Device

Set Up the Monitoring Station and Recording Device  

Set up the monitoring station and recording device per the manufacturer’s instructions.   


Step 4

Step 4: Program Your System

Program Your System  

1.  Turn on the camera, monitor and recording device per your system instructions.  
2.  Program the cameras if necessary using the software provided by the 
3.  If your surveillance system allows access over the Internet, add the device to your 
     home network following the instructions that came with your system.  


Step 5

Step 5: Test Your Surveillance System

Test Your Surveillance System  

1.  Test your surveillance system to ensure the camera’s signal is received and the 
      images are clear and being recorded.  
2.  Set your system to manual, motion or scheduled recording, as applicable.