[WARNING: This is a LONG post. So, grab a drink and have a read. TLDR at the bottom, but it lacks in depth detail.]
Good day folks,
So here’s another camera rant thanks to some of the more recent updates screwing/bricking things on me.
A bit of a background primer:
- I have a background in working in IT.
- I have also worked in the security industry for over 16 years, as a guard and tech specialist.
- I have 2 cam V3s that I bought about 3-4 years ago.
- 1 Cam Pan V3 that was purchased about 6 months ago.
- All cameras are well within range of the WiFi router (the furthest one is maybe 15 feet, the other 2 are 6-10 feet away, with one being in the same freaking room as the router). I live in a 2 bedroom apartment, so it’s not a huge place by any means (750-800 sq. ft.).
- Camera Locations:
- Front Entryway
- Living Room
- Baby’s Bedroom (and before anyone says anything, it’ll be removed as she gets old enough.)
Wyze Cam V3
Up until 3-4 weeks ago, all of my cameras were working fine, without too many headaches. I do have them set to auto-update, and I suspect a recent OTA firmware update (between Sept-Oct) has either gone bad, or is buggy as heck.
Over the last 4 weeks, one of my V3s started to drop off occasionally, reconnect (according to my router logs), and then die (requiring a power cycle to fix it). A few days later, my other one started to do same thing… Drop, Reconnect, Die, Powercycle. So I programmed a daily 2AM reboot schedule for the 2 v3s, and it seemed to help for a bit… now they just die and stay dead without warning, at any time (sometimes multiple times a day).
Wyze Cam Pan V3
Over the last 2-3 weeks, my Cam Pan v3 started doing the odd drop as well, but it seems to sort itself out. Then for some reason 2-3 weeks ago, it’s been reporting that the MicroSD card isn’t there/dead. I haven’t really bothered to look into it yet as I’ve been busy with work, and having CamPlus sorta bumped that issue down the priority list. However, with my baby daughter getting older and she’s been starting to say words here and there, we want to be able to capture them on video. We use the Pan v3 to monitor her in her crib (plus baby monitor) when she’s sleeping so we don’t disturb her. To note, I’ve also programmed a scheduled 11AM reboot for the Pan v3 so we don’t lose the camera in the middle of the night while the little one is sleeping.
The cameras were all doing it at sporadic times, that is, until this week. First thing Monday morning, all 3 died at 2-4AM and none came back until my wife powercycled them all… and it’s a pain to do so, so I’ll be getting some IOT plugs for that soon… Again, they all died again last night at the same time. I powercycled them all (again) before I went to work at 6AM this morning… they were dead (offline) again when I checked them about 2 hours (8AM) after I left home. I rebooted my router remotely twice, and they weren’t reconnecting. Then, magically, they’re all working now (as of when I checked them at 1PM during lunch).
I’m a little perplexed as to how 3 cameras seem to be doing this all at the same time now… and are constantly failing regularly (especially the newer Pan v3), so I can only assume a bad OTA firmware update is screwing around with mine.
- Cameras all factory reset between troubleshooting sessions to rule out issues from network configuration
- Replicated the same issue across 3 routers, with near identical network configurations, from 3 different brands.
- Network Configuration:
- Cameras all located on isolated WiFi network (aka. ‘Guest Network’), with an IP numbering scheme different from main network (192.168.x.x vs. 10.0.x.x). No other devices are on this network aside from a media streaming device. Guest network also isolates devices from each other, and main network.
- Same network names and security keys used (WPA2, 32 character password).
- Main network contains 3 computers, smart TV, 3 cell phones all on WiFi.
- Hardwired devices are a printer, Bluray player, and a few NAS drives.
- All IPs are dynamically assigned to IOT devices, unless fixed IPs required for web interface access.
- IPv6 is disabled network-wide.
- UPNP is disabled (security risk), firewall is manually managed by myself.
- OpenVPN Server Enabled on 2 of 3 routers
- Routers connected to Fiber Modem via. 10Gbit Ethernet Port. Connection is handled by router using supplied ISP PPPoE credentials, bypassing ISP router settings. ISP Router used as a last resort measure to rule out issues with other 2 3rd party routers. All devices running the most current firmware.
- Routers used:
- ASUS RT-AX1800S (Current router, bought 3 months ago)
- Synology RT1900ac (Previous router, replaced due to age, purchased in 2017)
- ISP Supplied Router/Fiber ONT - Bell Canada - GigaHub (Manufactured by: Sagemcom)
- I also joined my cameras to a network with direct access to the Internet (no filtering, UPNP on) to replicate a typical home network environment. The issue still persists.
- Mobile Device(s) used for configuration, testing, etc:
- Samsung Galaxy A52 5G Smartphone - Android 13
- Nokia 7.2 Smartphone - Android 12
Troubleshooting Methods to Try:
- Manually reflashing cameras with new or older firmware (I didn’t know this was possible until I started digging into the forums today).
- Cam Pan V3 Micro SDCard issue - I’ll be testing the card. May need to reformat, or replace it, if the cam bricked it.
I’m open to suggestions to try other things, I’ve already read some of the ongoing threads. I will be adding my logs to the dumpster fire that ‘Fix-It Friday’ thread has become thanks to bad firmware.
Thanks for reading my mini-novel,
- I have 3 cams - 2 Wyze Cam v3s, 1 Wyze Cam Pan v3
- They all started dropping connections randomly after a recent update in the last month or 2. However, they would recover after a while. Oddly occurring between 2-4AM every day.
- In the last week, they die and freeze up completely requiring a full powercycle to work, and just do it again sporadically.
- Cam Pan v3 started to report that it had no SD card in the last 2-3 weeks. Need to investigate, just hope it’s a corrupt filesystem.
- Tested cameras using 3 different routers to rule out ISP and network issues. Factory reset them all every time, no dice.
- Gonna try manually flashing firmware in hopes of it fixing a bad OTA update.
If all else fails… I have 3 targets to sight in my new hunting rifle scope on… and I may move onto a different ecosystem… or those cheap Chinese IPCams (which will be hell to try and keep some semblance of network security). However, they seem to be less failure prone when it comes to dropping connections…
I like Wyze cameras, and have recommended to friends and family. However, these recent firmware snafus are getting to be infuriating. I’m getting phone calls from folks asking why their cameras stopped working all of sudden, for hours on end.
Wyze, please allow us a way to access our cameras in the event they do drop connection… or at least program the firmware to re-establish lost connections. If a cheap $5 Chinesium smart-switch from Alibaba can do that for my uncle, you guys should be able too as well.