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If you’re experiencing difficulties with any models of Google Nest cameras – both indoor and outdoor, including Nest IQ, Nest Cam, Google Nest Doorbell, Nest Dropcam, or Dropcam Pro – which are equipped with night vision, you can resolve the issue by following a few simple steps I have provided in this article.

The most common fix for Google Nest camera night vision issues is resetting the app and the camera itself. Turn off and then turn on the night vision mode on the Nest app, and to reset the Nest cam, unplug the camera for 10 seconds. I have elaborated in detail below.

We also have a guide on why we do not recommend using Nest Cam as a Baby Monitor here, same reasons we don’t recommend Ring Cam as a baby monitor.

This guide is part of our troubleshooting series on baby monitors and security cameras. This is an extension of the article on fixing night vision issues with monitors and cameras which you can also check. Whether Google Home baby monitors such as Nest or Arlo, any camera with faulty night vision should be fixed and this guide will help you do just that!

Before troubleshooting your Nest Cam Night Vision Issues:

Google Nest cameras, unlike their counterparts, seamlessly integrate with the Google Home ecosystem. You can effortlessly control them through the Nest Hub display, the Home app, or even your phone app. To fix the night vision setting, you have to go through the settings on your Nest Hub, Home app and your Phone app.

You also need to make sure that the Nest Cam is charged fully. Night vision mode uses more power and limited power supply may impact night vision mode.

16 Ways to fix night vision not working on Nest Cameras:

Turn on night vision mode:

One easily overlooked mistake is failing to activate the night vision mode on your Nest camera. Without it, you may see distorted images in shades of pink, purple, blue, or black. Ensure your camera’s night vision is enabled to avoid this issue and maintain optimal image quality.

An easy way to fix this issue of night vision being blurry or dark is to go into your Nest app, tap on ‘Settings’, then select the camera which is giving you neck pain. Then, scroll down and select ‘Night vision’. You will see there are three options: Auto, On, and Off. To turn on night vision mode, press ‘On’ – this should fix the issue.

Instead of simply activating it, ensure that you enable the setting for your Nest camera to detect low-light conditions and automatically activate itself, eliminating the need for manual activation.

On the Google Home app, follow these steps;

  1. Open the Google Home app.
  2. Tap on “Favorites” or “Devices”.
  3. Press and hold the tile of your device.
  4. Select “More” and then choose “Settings”.
  5. Tap on “Video”.
  6. Under “Night Vision”, select “Auto”.

Below is a helpful short video on how to turn on night vision mode on Google Nest Hub;

On your Nest App, follow these steps;

  1. From the home screen, choose the desired camera.
  2. Access the Settings and navigate to Night Vision.
  3. Adjust the switch to Auto, or Always On. These two setting options ensure that you don’t accidentally miss activating LED lights for the dark vision mode.

If your Nest Cam’s night vision isn’t automatically turning off during the day, follow the steps in the video below to turn it off;

Eliminate any Bright Lights:

Another reason your Google camera isn’t turning on its night vision is the presence of bright lights, which can trick the camera into thinking it is not dark enough to switch on its night vision.

For a quick fix, dim or turn off any lights that are near or facing the camera. This ensures that your Nest camera detects low light conditions and automatically activates the night vision mode for clear images.

Reposition your camera:

If the infrared light from your Nest camera reflects off nearby surfaces such as a shelf, window, window screen, or wall, it can disrupt the night vision mode. To avoid this issue, ensure that your Nest camera is positioned in a way that eliminates any reflective surfaces within its field of view as elaborated on this Google support page.

Ensure the Camera is within IR Range:

Also, note that Nest cameras such as Google Nest Doorbell have a IR range of Up to 20 ft (6.10 m) using 6 high-power 850 nm infrared LEDs lights to illuminate. If your camera is positioned too far away from the area you want to monitor, the infrared lights may not reach their intended target, resulting in poor night vision quality. To fix this, ensure that your camera is placed or mounted at an optimal distance within its range.

Clean Lens and Sensors:

Dust, dirt, and debris can accumulate on your Nest camera’s lens and sensors, which can obstruct the infrared light from reaching its target. This results in poor night vision quality or a complete failure of the night vision mode to activate.

To fix this issue, gently clean your camera’s lens and sensors with a soft cloth or tissue. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaning agents as they may damage the camera’s components.

Use IR Illuminator:

If your Nest camera’s built-in IR lights are not sufficient to provide adequate night vision, you can consider using an external IR illuminator. These devices emit powerful infrared light over a wider range and can significantly improve the night vision quality of your camera.

The video below has details;

Tendelux 80ft IR Illuminator

To extend the infrared range of your Nest cameras beyond the standard 30ft, consider investing in an external IR illuminator. I strongly recommend The Tendelux 80ft IR Illuminator for enhancing the night vision capabilities of your Nest Cam. Others have also said great things about using this Illuminator with Nest and how it enhances visibility and clarity perfectly. Read reviews here.

Adjust Camera Settings:

You can also check and adjust the settings on your Nest camera to optimize its night vision performance. Access the camera’s settings through the Nest app and make changes to features such as image quality, exposure, and contrast, to improve night vision.

I’ve discovered that experimenting with different settings and combinations is incredibly beneficial when it comes to finding the optimal night vision setting for my Nest camera. Continue adjusting until you discover the perfect combination that suits your specific environment.

Check and Remove the sticker:

If you notice that the images or videos from your Nest camera appear blurry, out of focus, or splotchy, the issue could be caused by a sticker. To resolve this, remove the clear sticker that is placed on the lens of Nest cameras. This sticker is meant to protect the lens during shipping and setup.

Check IR Cut Filter

The IR cut filter is a tiny mechanical device found in most security cameras, including Nest cameras, which block infrared light during the day. At night, it flips out of the way to allow infrared light in, thus enabling night vision. However, sometimes it may get stuck, causing issues with your Nest camera’s night vision.

If your Nest camera is getting stuck in night vision mode during the day because of the IR Cut Filter, it could be due to temperature extremes. Ensure that it is not exposed to excessive heat or cold.

Do not use Nest indoor cameras outdoors as they are specifically designed for indoor use and have temperature limitations suitable only for indoor environments. To ensure the proper functioning of the IR Cut filter, position your outdoor cameras under eaves or in shaded areas. This will prevent overheating during excessively hot weather conditions. Additionally, if you live in an area with harsh winters, it’s best to remove the camera and store it indoors during freezing temperatures unless your Nest camera specs indicate that it can withstand below-zero temperatures.

Once you’ve sorted the temperature issues, reset your Nest camera by unplugging it, then plugging it back in after 10 seconds. This will cause the IR Cut filter to reset, and night vision should work correctly.

You should also reset the Nest app. First, change the app settings from Auto to Manual then toggle the settings on and off. Observe the feed to see if the pink or purple tint disappears when the Night Vision settings are toggled off.

Those steps should resolve your IR Cut Filter getting stuck on night vision mode during the daytime.

Check for Obstructions:

If you notice a bright white shape on the edge of your Google cam while the rest of the scene is too dark, it could be caused by a surface that is too close to the camera’s view, such as a wall. To address this issue, adjust the angle of your camera so that the surface remains out of view. This will help optimize the quality of your captured images.

See more details on the Google support page here.

Install wedge to angle your Nest Camera:

Using a wedge can help angle the camera such as Google Nest Doorbell to get a better view of your walkway or front patio while keeping other close surfaces out of view. Just install the wedge by screwing it into your wall or ceiling as instructed in the product manual. Then attach your Nest camera to the small plate that holds its backplate in place.

Wedges are available for purchase through most hardware and home improvement stores, so you can easily find one that will fit your specific Google Nest model. Here is a Riovo brand of wedge common for Nest Doorbell which allows you to adjust from a range of 30 to 55 degrees.

Crop out surfaces causing glare:

If you are experiencing issues with night vision on your Nest camera, it may be due to glare from nearby surfaces. To fix this issue, try cropping out the surfaces causing the glare using the Nest app. This can be done using the zoom feature on the camera’s live feed. Simply zoom in on the area you want to crop out and crop out surfaces causing the glare. This way, your camera will have a clear view and night vision will work properly.

Get more details on zoom and enhance feature here.

Check internet connection:

If your night vision isn’t working or if the Nest cam shows grainy or pixelated video while you’re watching remotely, it may suggest a slow internet connection in your current location. To check the internet speed, open any web browser on a computer or mobile device.

Type “Speed Test” in the search bar and select one of the top results. Follow the instructions to run a speed test and see if it meets the minimum requirement for Nest cameras, which is 2 Mbps upload speed.

If your internet connection is below 2 Mbps, this could be the cause of your night vision issues. Try moving the camera closer to your router or upgrading your internet plan.

Additionally, if you have multiple Nest cameras and devices using the same Wi-Fi network, it could also slow down your internet connection and affect the performance of your Nest cameras’ night vision. Google Support has more details here.

Check your power source:

Similar to the internet connection, if your Nest camera is not receiving enough power, it can affect the performance of its night vision. Make sure your camera is plugged into a reliable power source and that the cable is securely connected.

If you are using an extension cord or power strip, try plugging the camera directly into a wall outlet to see if there’s any improvement in night vision.

If you are using battery-powered brands such as Nest Cam Outdoor, make sure the batteries are fully charged and replace them if necessary. You can also try using a different set of batteries to see if that improves night vision performance.

Check for firmware updates:

Another potential solution for fixing Nest camera night vision not working is to check for any available firmware updates. Firmware updates can improve the overall performance of your camera, including its night vision capabilities.

Google has a page with details of all the latest firmware updates.

Check for Software Updates:

As with any technology, software updates can be crucial in fixing bugs and improving overall performance. To check for any available updates for your Nest camera, open the Nest app and go to the settings of your camera. Look for a “Software Update” option and follow the instructions to update your camera if needed.

To successfully update, your Nest camera needs to be connected to a strong and stable internet connection. Read more on Nest software updates here

FAQs on Nest Cam Night Vision not Turning On: