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night vision camera through window

How to Use Night Vision Camera Through Glass

A lot of people have opted to install their safety cameras inside, behind glass windows.

But, installing a night camera behind a bit of glass may ruin the images they capture. Thus, we've put together valuable hints so you'd understand how to use a night vision camera.

How Do Night Cameras Work?       

night vision camera through glass

Light exists as a spectrum that's both visible and invisible to human eyes. During the night-time, there is minimal visible light.

Your night vision camera can use this little visible light and detect light that's invisible to our eyes and record them in movies that show us exactly what the camera can see.

Night cameras are susceptible to small amounts of visible light and may also pick the ones that aren't visible to human eyes and change them to sights that we may see.

Most commercial night vision cameras are caught up with infrared light and have infrared lights to enlighten the area that the camera is pointed at.

Glass Windows Can Spoil Safety Camera Pictures      

how to use night vision camera through glass

Security cameras mounted outside your home or apartment are more prone to a lot of issues. The cameras get ruined by snow or rain, or the videos' quality gets destroyed by severe weather.

Troublemakers also make them easy to tamper with. Having them may also ruin the aesthetics of your residence.

So, it's only natural that people discover a way not to install them outside the home. That is why the idea to set the cameras behind the glass window came about.

But doing that isn't an ideal solution. At times, the image you get from the safety camera when you have it behind glass windows as soon as it records at night is plain white or appears overexposed.

That is because there's additional light getting picked up aside from what you plan to get.

This is the actual light that becomes reflected on the glass window. This would come from several light sources within your home.

The light in the house, your house's ambient lighting, and the light coming off the infrared light onto the camera may bounce off the surface of the glass.

These are caught up by your camera and interfere with the record of the external scene you would like to capture.

This is undoubtedly the biggest challenge you may encounter with your safety camera installed.

How to Use Night Vision Camera Through Glass?                 

how to make infrared camera work through glass

You might find that the picture from your safety camera looks great during the day, and then the quality diminishes on night records.

This is because natural lighting outside overpowers the light that the glass reflects within the house.

Come night-time, and the powerful natural light outside is no longer there.

You have various light sources inside bouncing off the glass window, overwhelming the light coming from the outside.

You will need to make sure the light that's coming from outside your window is the dominant light all the time to make your camera work.

Here are a few of the methods on how best to use a night vision camera.

Switch Off the Infrared Light in the Camera 

Your camera might be equipped with infrared light. It works by throwing off infrared light on the area that the camera is pointed at, and the camera picks up the light that bounces off the place.

When your camera points out against the glass window, that infrared light will bounce off the glass rather than the objects outside.

Turning off that leaves your camera to catch only what is coming from the outside.

If you feel that this will decrease the quality of the video you would be shooting, then you may try placing an infrared light out.

This can assume the function of the infrared light, which was built into your camera.

Remove Ambient Light Inside the Home.       

how to make infrared camera work through glass

This does not mean you must turn off all the lights in the house so you'd find a clearer picture from your camera.

It only means you block the light so that it does not bounce off the glass.

Some indicate draping a black cloth around the glass window. Ambient light becomes blocked by the cloth, and your camera is free to capture just the picture outside.

You don't have to limit yourself to using fabric. Any material you may set up that blocks off light that won't interfere with your camera's shot will work.

Ambient light may also come from the status light of the camera. Your camera also can pick up that.

Turning it off can enhance the quality of the videos on your camera.

Install the Camera the Front-End Sticks Near the Glass Surface      

By setting the front end of the camera as near to the glass window as you can, you lessen the amount of light reflected on the glass, and the camera can capture to a minimum.

Minimum reflected light means it can't overpower the light coming from the outside.

If you choose to set up the camera a few inches away from the surface of the glass, and then you would be letting a broader area of the glass be inside the camera angle – allowing more reflected light to get in the shot.

Install Light Sources Outdoors          

When natural light diminishes at night, you can use artificial light sources.

You can use light bulbs, lamps, or infrared light if you don't want to draw too much attention to your home.

These can provide you with light that's powerful enough to overpower light coming from in your home.


When you can't have cameras installed outside the home, you can decide on cameras mounted behind glass windows.

However, having a bit of glass at the camera's line of sight may ruin the movies you would be taking.

Try to control how much light comes from the glass to balance it with the light coming from the outside.

Your goal is to allow more light on the outside to get into the camera without too much interruption.

You can either diminish the light that bounces off the glass from within the home with the techniques mentioned earlier or raise the light coming from the outside.

About the Author Rob Carson

I work in commercial construction, in Dallas, TX.

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