How to fix CCTV camera image problems

Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) is an affordable and common feature found in most modern security devices. Even so, CCTV's security guarantee is as good as that camera's quality and readability.

The quality of the footage is an essential requirement of any CCTV camera. That is why all problems related to CCTV's are handled promptly and with care. Nevertheless, you will encounter occasional flickering. Such CCTV camera image problems could hide crucial details.

Modern CCTV cameras are user-friendly and durable. In any case, independent of the endeavors put forward by CCTV producers, issues are unavoidable. Here, we'll see a few common issues that come with CCTVs and how to troubleshoot them.


Troubleshooting Common CCTV Camera Image Problems

1. The camera colors are off

Does the CCTV footage you get resemble that of the 60's hallucinogenic rock videos? If so, chances are the issue is with the camera's white balance.

When a person looks at a white object, the eye sees it as white even if there's no white light illuminating. CCTV cameras work similarly. When the white balance isn't set correctly, colors will be visibly distorted.

To fix it:

  • If it's a camera for both outdoors and indoors, ensure the proper settings have been put, i.e., for outdoor and indoor. The setting usually is color-related.
  • If the outdoor camera automatically adjusts its white-balance settings, angle the camera down to face far from the sky/light source.
  • If the camera comes with AWB or ATW support but is still not okay after repositioning, consider disabling AWB or ATW. Then, manually adjust the white balance until you're satisfied with the colors.

2. Only white and black images are shown.

The security camera including the lighting level has got to be set tall sufficient for the camera to see colors. Night cameras can record pictures when the scene has infrared LEDs. They can't, be that as it may, separate colors underneath such light.

That is why a CCTV camera that can see color will still record white and black at night.

How to fix it:

  • Ensure that the camera's requirements match those of your ambient lighting environment.
  • Ensure that the camera's optical path isn't obscured.
  • Ensure the CCTV camera's output video type matches the input video type.
Trouble Shooting CCTV Camera

3. Video shows horizontal lines:

Having video footage showing horizontal lines makes it hard for CCTV users to see fine details. Two significant causes of these are electrical or ambient lighting interference.

To fix this:

  • Keep electrical lights from falling straight on the camera. These lights can tamper with the single-chip CCD sensors causing horizontal lines or flickering.
  • Ensure that the power supply hasn't been damaged and there's sufficient power filtering.
  • If the coaxial or Cat 5/6 cables you're using are particularly long, ensure that they are correctly routed. Users should keep the cables far from satellite transmitters etc.

4. Video is flickering:

Security CCTV camera flickering problem is not easy to deal with as it happens intermittently. In some instances, the cause is incorrect installation. It is malfunctioning power supplies or equipment or even poor ambient conditions in other cases.

To fix this:

  • Ensure that the monitor isn't damaged.
  • Ensure that the cables and connectors shielding aren't damaged.
  • Ensure that there was proper termination of video outputs.
  • Ensure that all devices and cameras have been rated suitable for 50Hz use.

5. Noisy video footage

When you have noisy CCTV video footage, the issue is usually RF or electrical interference.

To fix this:

  • Check all cables and connectors for possible damage.
  • Disconnect other video equipment or cameras and check if disconnecting will reduce noise.

6. The video signal isn't there:

This issue is one of the most frustrating of all problems. What's more, it is an issue that manifests in different ways:

To fix this:

  • Ensure power cables and connectors aren't damaged and are plugged in.
  • If the camera's power supply has a fuse box, check that fuse box.
  • Cheek the PoE switch to confirm that the camera is being powered.

7. Camera not working at night:

If you have a night camera that doesn't work, chances are its IR LEDs are not working. Some causes for this issue include camera misconfiguration, insufficient power, and damaged LEDs.

To fix this:

  • Ensure the camera's configuration is done for night use.
  • Meet the cameras power requirements
  • Check for and replace old LEDs as they do not give sufficient light.


The great news is that the above-listed settled can be done DIY. However, in case all these fixes sound complicated, you'll be able to always look for the assistance of professional CCTV installers.

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