OG (& v3) lens moisture problems

Well I guess it was only a matter of time, but I now have experienced my first OG camera with moisture in the lens (not to be confused with the “foggy” images due to the internal filter glass fogging up which I think is limited to the v2).
This topic has been discussed before with the v3 but I thought it was worth brining up again. It is my opinion that the lenses being used for the OG (& v3, v3 pan and maybe others) has an inherent defect. There is a rubber/plastic surround on the front lens element that over time (around 1 year) exposed to the sun and rain fails and allows moisture into the front element of the lens rendering them useless.


From the pic you can clearly see where this ring has cracked and deteriorated. I have had this occur with every v3 camera I have that is exposed to the elements (4) and I now have it with my first OG camera. I suspect my other three will fail in just a matter of time.
In the past when this occurred with my v3s Wyze replaced each one, even those that were out of it’s 1 year warranty. Not so any more. My OG camera was denied a replacement or refund due to it being “outside of the warranty period”. In this case by about two weeks.
I had thought Wyze would have corrected this issue with the OG cameras. I personally had over 5 cameras replaced and in reading this forum I have seen many other users with the same problem having had theirs replaced as well. You would have thought Wyse would have figured out they had a product with an obvious defect. I guess not.

FWIW I have had success in replacing the lenses with either a v2 lens (does not experience the defect) or after market M12 lenses and restored all the cameras to function. There has never been a case of moisture inside the cameras for me.

My only advice is to check your cameras before their warranty expires and hope you can get a replacement or refund.

It is very upsetting that the NEW OG suffers from much the same issues as the V3, Now we have to ask will the doorbells also have this issue?

Thanks for the PSA reminder to make sure we don’t wait to contact support if we are experiencing issues. Sorry to hear of your moisture issue. It’s always frustrating when something gets damaged.

To be honest, that picture makes it look to me like obvious abnormal physical damage caused outside of regular use, probably from opening the camera up as you mentioned you do this:

This damages the cameras, voids their IPXX water-resistance rating, completely voids the warranty, etc. I would know, I have opened a camera too. I wonder if that could be related to why you have had so many that needed to be replaced?

That picture shows cracks and breakage almost identical to what I have seen from other people, including myself, who have opened up their cameras, such as to swap a lens, or antenna or disconnect the mic or various other reasons.

I have over 40 cameras, including some of each model (multiple V3’s, multiple OG’s) and none of them have ever had a lens moisture problem, and none of them ever got severe scratches all over them like this or cracks and chips like this except for the 1 camera that I opened up. I knew when I opened up that camera that the warranty was automatically void and it had obvious damage on it almost identical to this.

That’s not to say that you can’t open up your cameras and do whatever you want with them, but just as a warning to anyone else like me who ever does open up their cameras for any reason, we shouldn’t submit a warranty claim for any camera that we have ever opened up, even if it is within the 1-year warranty period, doing so could technically be considered warranty fraud, so be careful. If we’re going to submit a claim, we should be upfront that we opened up the camera. Then if they still replace it, we can’t get criminal charges because they’re choosing to make an exception and use their discretion with informed knowledge of the full situation.

Opening it up is our right, but blaming them for damage or when it stops working is a right we give up when we choose to open up the cameras. I opened mine knowing full well that I could never use the warranty on that camera ever again. But the ones I want to qualify under the warranty, I do not mess with them.

It’s also fairly understandable to me if a company doesn’t replace a camera or other product after a warranty expires. While I’m sure some do honor expired warranties, I’ve personally never had a company honor a warranty that is expired, and I am not upset with them for that, especially if a warranty is at least 1year long. That’s fairly reasonable to me as far as electronics go. If the warranty was only 30 days, then I’d be a bit more upset. But I think 1 year is relatively reasonable for something like a $20-$50 smart camera.

Of more than 40 cameras for several years, I’ve never once needed to use a warranty replacement with any Wyze camera. So along those lines, here are my secrets and suggestions for anyone who wants to keep their cameras running well:

  1. Don’t open them up.
  2. Don’t mount them upside down when exposed to the weather (I believe their IP rating was tested standing up). It makes moisture more likely to get into it over time.
  3. Use a drip loop on any cords when it’s outside.
  4. If the lens is not a flat style lens cover, then avoid pointing the camera straight up for sky watching without a protective covering of some sort because the water/snow/etc will pool around the lens and often eventually get some moisture inside it.

If you do have a camera acting up, don’t wait to report it to Support. Let them know as soon as you notice it. If you voided the warranty by opening it up or any other thing, make sure to be honest about that so that they can make the decision with their discretion. I have had them replace other items for me even when they were my fault. For example, with my video doorbell, I lost my wiring and mounting stuff. I called them up and the first thing I told them is that it is 100% my fault, I lost it, they don’t owe me anything, but I was willing to buy replacement wiring, fuse, mount, etc. They appreciated my honesty and used their discretion to just swap me out with a whole brand new one that had everything included. I was totally honest and I offered to pay for the parts I needed and they went out of their way to take care of me. Wyze support sometimes gets a bad rap, but they’d always treated me way more than fairly when I am honest and upfront about everything. If they told me my warranty is expired since it’s been more than a year, I’d understand. a 1 year warranty isn’t too bad on a $20-$50 camera TBH. Lots of electronics manufacturers will even only do 30-90 days unless you pay them to extend it, so I’m reasonably satisfied with 1 year.

Thanks for letting people know to be careful and reminding everyone not to wait to contact support if you notice any camera issues. Contact them sooner rather than later so you don’t risk calling after the warranty is expired. That’s a great PSA reminder!

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Carverofchoice,
Let me first say I greatly respect your opinions and contributions to this forum.
Most of what you are saying here I 100% agree with.

The one thing I feel compelled to address is clarification of my pic. This is a pic of my unopened, unmodified OG camera. What you see is the result of 1 year and 2 weeks of service outdoors. The “scratches” are the result of me cleaning the camera with a mild glass cleaning solution and a microfiber cloth. The black plastic on the front of the Wyze cameras is extremely soft and will experience this with even the lightest and careful of cleaning. In hindsight I probably should have adjusted the lighting as to not draw attention to these blemishes.
Also I am in no way stating I recommend submitting a warranty replacement for an opened or modified camera. No. Not ever. Under any circumstances.
This should “literally” go without saying.
Yes, it’s a $33 camera. Yes, a one year warranty is better than a lot of electronics. That is also a given.

The intent of my post was to inform that Wyze used to be a bit more lenient with their warranty replacements. They appear to no longer be. They used to manufacture a product that would survive in the outdoors longer. That appears to no longer be the case.
This is evidenced by the multiple v2 cameras that I have that have done outdoor duty (read exposed to the elements) and survived longer, albeit in the simplest of camera cases that offered no protection for the lens, which is the part that is in question.

One thing I would like help for you on is what you meant by “flat style lens cover”? Please clarify. If there is a camera case with an effective lens cover I would love to find one, if that is what you meant. I seem to remember someone trying glass microscope slides as covers for the lens in a post.

TL;DR, Wyze’s warranty replacement behavior has changed. Wyze’s longevity of their product had changed.

In my experience. In my opinion.
Buyer beware.

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Thanks for the clarification and the kind words.

That is definitely good to know. I think that was valuable information that you are sharing with everyone who may be used to more leniency in the past. :+1:

So, I have pointed some cameras up at the sky sometimes, including V3’s or OG’s during meteor showers, or other times and in some past testing, I have found that on Wyze cameras, it often seems like there is a little divot surrounding the lens. When you feel carefully, the center of lens bulges outward and the outside area of the lense dips down lower than the rest of the camera, giving water and snow/ice a place to pool onto it and given enough time, slowly press down on and likely get inside. I think the gasket and sealing they do is sufficient to keep water out in light amounts, particularly if the camera is pointed downward or a horizontal view, but I’ve noticed if some of the cameras are pointed skyward, that water will collect and pool and sit in the little moat around the lens for a long time. Add direct sunlight to the lens or the gasket/sealing area and/or freezing temperatures and I believe pointing the lens upward and collecting water/snow does significantly increase the risk of the of IPxx failure because it’s rated for splashing, but not submersion, and in a way, keeping a constant pool of water in a “moat” around the lens is kind of acting like submersion, which it’s not rated to be able to handle. This is why I usually suggest against leaving cameras pointed upward 24/7 if they have an indent around the lens which acts like a sort of moat when the are facing upward. At least, this is why I only face mine upward during meteor showers when it’s not going to rain. Maybe “flat style” is the wrong wording for that, but I guess I mostly mean even with the rest of the casing so there isn’t an indent that collects water around it like a moat, if that makes sense.

I have seen a similar problem on other manufacturers’ cameras sometimes too (I do have some cameras from other brands as well).

I do think Wyze needs to improve that design and do more testing with future models being pointed straight up and having constant water falling on it in high temperatures. People should be able to point their cams skyward without worrying about water collecting around the lens and possibly seeping in. For now though, whenever I see there is an indent around a camera lens, I just assume it will collect and leak water, because I’ve seen it happen too many times. Hence my suggestion to be careful about leaving it pointed straight up when it is like that.

Anyway, thanks again for your clarifications, your kind words, and for letting people know that Wyze is starting to abide by their official warranty periods. I think that is useful to know. :+1:

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What kind of glass cleaning solution are you using?

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After trying many “glass” cleaners over the years my current favorites are Zep and Turtle Wax. I use these on windows, eyeglasses and lenses. The trick is to always use a microfiber for cleaning and a fresh one for buffing afterwards. Perfectly clean glass every time.
If you want something a little more lens specific try the many individual moistened wipes that come in the “moist towelette” package. They are single use but do a pretty good job.

Update:
But first a disclaimer - everything listed next will most certainly void your warranty, so be forewarned.

I used these to replace the lenses on my OG and also a v3 camera:
https://a.co/d/djZFrx1
They appear to have an ever so slightly wider FoV than the original.
Worth noting that these replacement lenses have a similar construction (metal) to the ODC and Battery Cam Pro. The v3, v3pro, and OG all have the same all plastic lens with the defect mentioned previously.
When I disassemble the v3, OG and v3 pan I am impressed as to the lengths they go to make these cameras weatherproof as evidence by the fact I have NEVER had water or moisture inside the cameras. Its just the lens that appears to be the weak link. Kind of a shame when it looks to be an easy fix on their (Wyze’s) part.
Pic of the cam with replacement lens.

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Thanks for the information…

What’s Sad is Wyze knows of this issue and still uses the low quality lens with a high failure rate.

Obviously Wyze figured it will outlast their warranty, so Screw the Customers…

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FYI, the v3 Pan Cam also has the same plastic lens.
Replaced my first one a couple of weeks ago due to moisture in the lens, just like all the others. Lasted about 1 year and 3 weeks, so not eligible for warranty replacement. :pensive:

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