At SmartHomePerfected our information is accurate and unbiased. If you buy through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more

Windows are obviously a great position to see what’s going on outside your home. They are also entry points, so a good security network should have them under surveillance. When considering window security cameras, there are plenty of options. It is important to note however, you will need the right camera, as infrared motion detection and night vision does not work through glass, while glare might be an issue if positioned incorrectly.

Option 1: Window Mounted Security Camera
9.4 Panasonic HomeHawk Window Home Monitoring Camera for Outdoor Monitoring, Mounts to Inside Window, Color Night Vision, Wide Angle, 24/7 Full HD Recording, Person Detection, Alexa Compatible KX-HNC500
Best PickWindow mount camera with night vision
8.9 WYZE Cam v3 with Color Night Vision, Wired 1080p HD Indoor/Outdoor Video Camera, 2-Way Audio, Works with Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT
Runner UpWired security camera
Option 2: Security Camera through a Window
9.4 Blink Indoor – wireless, HD security camera with two-year battery life, motion detection, and two-way audio – 1 camera kit
Top PickMotion detection based on image frames
8.9 Google Nest Cam Indoor - Wired Indoor Camera for Home Security - Control with Your Phone and Get Mobile Alerts - Surveillance Camera with 24/7 Live Video and Night Vision
Runner UpIndoor security camera with 2-way audio
8.7 Arlo Essential Indoor Camera - 1080p Video with Privacy Shield, Plug-in, Night Vision, 2-Way Audio, Siren, Direct to WiFi No Hub Needed, Wireless Security, Black - VMC2040B
Indoor nanny cam, pet camera, and security camera
Option 3: Mount a wire-free cam directed at the window
9.5 Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera - 1 Pack - Wireless Security, 1080p Video, Color Night Vision, 2 Way Audio, Wire-Free, Direct to WiFi No Hub Needed, Works with Alexa, White - VMC2030
Top PickFlexible security camera with a wide viewing angle
9.3 Reolink Argus 2 100% Wired-Free WiFi Security Camera Outdoor Rechargeable Battery Solar Powered, Starlight Night Vision, 1080P Home Surveillance
Runner UpSolar and battery-powered security camera

Can Security Cameras work through Windows?

The first and obvious question is: can security cameras work through windows? The answer is – yes, they can! It’s not always a walk in the park though, as the glare from the camera may reflect in the window. Placing a security camera on your window is possible, however, you need to do your research before committing to one of the following options.

For starters, you can place the security camera on the inside and make it look through the window. Alternatively, you can mount the camera on the window from the outside or next to the window.

Infrared Issues

Installing a security camera indoors overlooking the back or front yard of your house can save you a lot of time and money. You don’t have to install extra wiring and look for a place to mount the camera. Plus, it won’t be affected by rain, snow, and wind. However, this solution comes at a cost: window glare.

Window glare causes footage to become blurry and washed out, almost entirely defeating the purpose of having a security camera in the first place. Let’s have a look at why that happens and what you can do to avoid it.

IR sensors vs pixels

Your camera can detect motion in one of two ways. First, it can use infrared light to sense the heat coming from a living thing (human or animal) on your property. If that’s the case, your camera may not work as well behind glass. The IR light will bounce off the window and be stuck in a loop, unable to reach the outside. 

The other way cameras detect motion is through changing pixels. Cameras that measure the changes in pixels are a better choice for windows as they work just fine through the glass.

How to avoid window glare

There are several things you can do to avoid glare! For starters, try to position your camera as close to the glass as possible to avoid any light from entering. 

But to get the maximum out of your camera through a window at night, you’ll have to turn off the night vision (the infrared LEDs) to be more specific. So when you are buying an indoor camera for the window, make sure its one that can turn off the Infrared LEDs. 

You’ll have to use ambient light then, so make sure you have ample light outside during the night.

Passive Motion Detection

Some problems may arise when you expect motion detection to work through windows. Motion detection usually works through passive infrared technology, which means that cameras look for heat. The heat can be coming from a human or an animal that’s in the camera’s view, which would make the motion sensors pay closer attention.

Motion Detection through glass

The problem with windows is that they are made of thick glass. Modern windows are usually insulated, which means that they don’t let any heat through. That will prevent the IR light from reaching the outside. There are some exceptions with really old and thin glass windows. They may allow some IR light through, however, you can’t rely on it to work 100%.

Dual-Tech Motion Detectors

Microwave sensors in dual-tech motion detectors can sense motion through the glass as they work through sending out signals and analyzing the returning signals. 

Option 1: Window Mount a Security Camera

9.4
Best Pick
Window mount camera with night vision

The HomeHawk camera is a window security camera that can see through glass.

Top Features
  • The Panasonic HomeHawk Window camera can be mounted on the inside of a window.
  • The camera boasts color night vision.
  • The Panasonic security camera is compatible with the Amazon Alexa voice assistant.

The Panasonic HomeHawk Window is a discreet security camera that’s meant to be mounted on the inside of your window. The camera comes equipped with a suction cup that you can attach to any glass surface. 

Motion Detection

You can adjust the sensitivity of the camera to ensure you don’t get any false alarms. The camera is meant to detect humans and not cars, thus reducing the number of false alarms even more. 

You can create your detection area by outlining it in the app. The HomeHawk mobile app gives you access to live footage from anywhere, anytime. You can ensure things are alright at home no matter where you are.

Image Quality

The quality of the image is one of the best features of this camera. Enhanced color night vision allows you to see the greatest details even when it’s dark outside. Enjoy 1080p Full HD quality.

What we liked
  • The camera features a powerful suction cup that can adhere to any window surface, so you don’t need to spend time mounting it.
  • You can plug the camera into a regular outlet to charge, so you won’t ever need to worry about changing the batteries.
  • The camera offers clear and glare-free picture quality even at night.
What we didn't like
  • Though the suction cup is a great feature, it probably won't last as long as the camera. However, you can always purchase more.
8.9
Runner Up
Wired security camera

Wyze Cam v3 is a security camera with color night vision.

Top Features
  • Wyze Cam v3 is a wired security camera that can be used indoors and outdoors.
  • The camera boasts a 2-way audio feature, allowing you to communicate through the speaker.
  • The camera is compatible with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and IFTTT.

Wyze Cam v3 came to build on the success of the second version of the device. The manufacturer fixed some glitches and presented an overall newer and improved model. The resulting security camera is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. 

It is weather-resistant, so it can withstand rain and snow. The camera boasts color night vision, allowing you to see what’s going on even in the darkest night. 

Playback and Storage

You can access your footage through the Wyze mobile app from anywhere, anytime. The camera comes with free cloud space that you can use to store your recordings. There are no subscription fees involved for storage, however, some additional features might require recurring fees. 

Motion/Sound Detection

The camera features motion and sound detection. Once motion or sound is detected, the camera starts to record. You will get a notification on your phone from the Wyze app when there is a disturbance. You can also change the sensitivity of the camera to avoid false alarms.

What we liked
  • The color night vision allows you to see the clearest picture even when it’s dark outside, and the f/1.6 aperture brings in twice as much light.
  • The camera is wired. It is suitable for indoor use as well as outdoor use.
  • The camera comes with some free cloud storage that you can use for your camera footage.
What we didn't like
  • Some additional features need a monthly subscription.
  • Not compatible with the Apple Homekit.

Option 2: Security Camera through a Window

9.4
Top Pick
Motion detection based on image frames

Blink Mini offers 2 way-audio, motion detection based on frame detection, and a two year battery life in a wireless setting.

Top Features
  • Wireless with a 2-year battery life
  • Image algorithm for motion detection
  • 2 way-audio

Blink is part of Amazon’s smart home ecosystem, so just starting off integration with Alexa and other Amazon products is a given. The minimalist design of the camera also keeps it unnoticeable in any room or along the window. Lets dive into why this camera works as an indoor window camera: Frame based motion detection

Motion Detection

Like we’ve discussed earlier, if you use a camera through the window glass, infrared heat receptors don’t really work for motion detection. Blink Cameras use Pixel Difference Analysis for motion detection, which means they detect motion by comparing consecutive frames, and using AI algorithms to detect the type of object.

Blink Mini Subscription

While Pixel Difference Analysis works perfectly for see-through cameras, the bad part is that all that AI computing needs to happen on the cloud. So Blink cameras require a monthly subscription. 

If you already have Amazon subscriptions, perhaps you can get some sort of discount on the subscription, but there’s no working around the monthly fees if you want all the features of this camera.

Night Vision

Blink has infrared night vision, and you can turn off the infrared LEDs from the app if you are recording through a glass window. Then, you need ambient light on the outside, and you can use the night vision.

Video Quality

The camera records in 1080p HD during the day and night, and can get up to 30 frames per second. It has decent video quality, however you will find cameras with better resolution in our list.

Additional Features

The camera is wireless, and comes with a two-year battery life. This makes it portable and easier to set up as well.

Furthermore, the camera has 2 way audio, so you can use it as communication in between rooms, or if you install it at your main door, it can work as an intercom!

What we liked
  • Blink Mini has infrared night vision, so turn the infrared lights off and it works perfectly in the night with ambient light
  • As an Amazon product, it is compatible with the Amazon Smart Home Ecosystem
  • 2-way audio means you can use it as an intercom or for communication between rooms
  • Wireless, can be set up without professional help
What we didn't like
  • A Blink subscription is needed
  • Cloud storage
8.9
Runner Up
Indoor security camera with 2-way audio

Nest Cam Indoor from Google is a wired indoor security camera.

Top Features
  • You can control the Nest Cam with your phone and receive alerts about disturbances.
  • The camera provides a 24/7 live feed of what’s going on in its view.
  • The security camera is equipped with night vision.

Google Nest Cam Indoor is a great camera for your home security needs. The camera works in 1080p HD resolution. You can view the live feed in real-time using your phone or watch it back several hours later. Send clips to your friends and family while keeping your footage safe with two-factor authentication. 

To use the camera through a window during the night, you’ll have to turn off the Infrared lights through the mobile app or you can tape the LEDs shut as well. Just make sure they dont cause glare.

Motion Detection

The camera will notify you of any movement happening in its view. You will receive an email alert. One thing worth mentioning is that the camera is very sensitive. You will be notified of the smallest movements, such as your cat running through the frame. 

If you only want to be notified in the event of real disturbances, you may subscribe to Nest’s monthly subscription service called Nest Aware. Naturally, it comes with a monthly subscription fee. You can test out the subscription for a month for free.

Audio

The camera boasts a 2-way audio feature, so you can listen in on what’s going on in your home and communicate with your family members. The camera is easy to set up and mount.

What we liked
  • You can extract clips from camera footage and send them to your family members.
  • The camera has powerful night vision that provides high-quality video in the darkest night.
  • Two-factor authentication ensures your footage doesn’t get stolen and stays protected.
What we didn't like
  • Unless you subscribe to Nest Aware, you will be notified of the smallest movements in your house.
8.7
Indoor nanny cam, pet camera, and security camera

Arlo Essential Indoor Camera is a black wired camera with night vision.

Top Features
  • The Arlo app gives you the option to protect your footage with an automated privacy shield.
  • The camera has a wide viewing angle of 130 degrees.
  • You can use the camera as a baby monitor, nanny cam, pet camera, and security camera.

The Essential Indoor Camera by Arlo is a plug-in security camera with night vision. The setup process is pretty easy; all you have to do is connect your camera to your Wi-Fi network and plug it in. Then, you can control the camera and access the recordings using the Arlo mobile app.

Installation and Video Capture

The camera has a 130-degree viewing angle. The videos come back in high definition, so you’ll be able to see all the important details. The package comes with a wall mount that you can use to mount your camera. You can also simply prop it up on a shelf.

Monitoring Capabilities

Use the camera as a security camera as well as a baby cam or pet cam. It is up to you to set up the notifications and alerts based on your needs. You can be notified when the camera catches a person, vehicle, or package. Set up automatic actions and phone a friend in case of an emergency. 

What we liked
  • Use the 2-way audio feature to communicate with your pets, kids, and visitors.
  • The camera is very easy to set up. You just need to connect it to the Wi-Fi and plug it into an outlet.
  • Smart alerts allow you to act quicker by selecting predetermined actions.
What we didn't like
  • The camera doesn’t allow you to save clips from past recordings.

Option 3: Mount a wire-free cam directed at the window

9.5
Top Pick
Flexible security camera with a wide viewing angle

Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera is a wireless security camera with color night vision.

Top Features
  • The camera features 2-way audio, so you can communicate through it.
  • The Essential Spotlight Camera from Arlo works with the Amazon Alexa voice assistant.
  • The camera comes in a white colorway.

The Essential Spotlight Camera from Arlo is a great security camera for capturing feeds outdoors. The 1080p high definition allows you to see details. The camera is quite easy to set up. You can move it around in any way that you like and cover any view. The camera is weatherproof, so it can survive heat, rain, snow, and sun.

Arlo Secure Plan

If you’ve ever owned an Arlo camera, you must be familiar with their Arlo Secure plan. The plan allows you to customize your alerts to your liking and react to them quicker than ever. You can get notifications for people, vehicles, or packages, and react with a predetermined action.

Night Vision

With color night vision, you can see everything at night the same way you do during the day. The 2-way audio feature allows you to greet your visitors through the camera and listen in on their conversations. You’ll have to turn off the night vision to avoid glare from the infrared LEDs on the windows reflective surface. Here’s how you can do it in the app.

Alexa Compatibility

If you use Alexa, you can integrate this camera into your smart home system and control it using voice commands. If you spot an intruder, you can scare them off by sounding a siren using the Arlo mobile app.

What we liked
  • The camera has a wide viewing angle of 130 degrees.
  • The security camera offers a high resolution of 1080p.
  • Get the best camera view with its small and flexible body.
What we didn't like
  • The battery in this camera is not removable or replaceable.
9.3
Runner Up
Solar and battery-powered security camera

Argus Wire-Free Security Cam is a battery and solar-powered security camera.

Top Features
  • The camera is weatherproof, so it can withstand heat, sun, rain, snow, and cold.
  • The camera features 2-way audio that allows you to communicate with your guests.
  • The camera offers a great quality of image at 1080p Full HD.

The Argus Wire-Free Security Cam by Reolink is a solar-powered camera with a rechargeable battery. The camera works entirely through Wi-Fi, so you don’t need to plug it in anywhere. Starlight Night Vision allows the camera to provide a clear and precise picture even in the darkest night. 

Motion Detection

The camera operates based on motion detection. If it’s in sleep mode, it will wake up within seconds of motion being detected. You can access a remote live view from the camera using your phone or computer. The camera will send you an alert when its battery falls below 10%. 

Installation and Setup

The camera is quite easy to install. You can use a mount or other accessories to prop it up in the right position. Due to its size, it will blend right in anywhere. Plus, there are no wires that you need to care about, so the camera is more flexible than ever. The camera is weatherproof, so it’s suitable for indoor and outdoor use. 

What we liked
  • The camera is entirely wire-free. You can charge the battery or use solar power.
  • Starlight Night Vision technology offers the clearest picture even in the dark.
  • The camera has a wide viewing angle of 130 degrees.
What we didn't like
  • Scrolling through your recordings in the app can be difficult as they are presented as one timeline.

The Verdict

A window security camera can be a convenient solution for those who don’t want to risk putting their camera outside. If your window provides the perfect view, there is no reason you shouldn’t take advantage of it.

9.4
Best Pick
Window mount camera with night vision

The HomeHawk camera is a window security camera that can see through glass.

Top Features
  • The Panasonic HomeHawk Window camera can be mounted on the inside of a window.
  • The camera boasts color night vision.
  • The Panasonic security camera is compatible with the Amazon Alexa voice assistant.

Sources

Panasonic

Show CommentsClose Comments

Leave a comment