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Google's Nest Doorbell Can't Stand the Cold

Google's Nest Doorbell Can't Stand the Cold

Is your Google Nest Doorbell draining its battery faster than usual or stopping completely, even when connected to your doorbell? This is because it does not like being outside in the cold. A new support page published this week by Google confirms that Google's latest smart video doorbell, the Google Nest Doorbell (battery), and its Google Nest Cam (battery), cannot charge at temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit .

The update comes on the heels of complaints by users in the Google Nest forums that their Nest Doorbells were draining their batteries faster than usual this winter, even when they were connected to doorbell wiring to maintain their charge. . The cold weather will also affect the battery of the new Google Nest Cam. But Google says that if the camera is connected to a wired power source (it sells a weatherproof power adapter for $35), charging at low temperatures won't be a problem, as the wire powers the camera directly.

The cause of the doorbell problem is based on a small but important difference between a battery-powered and a "true" wired doorbell. Battery-powered doorbells attached to doorbell wires are not operating from your home's electrical wiring; The battery is being "trickle charged" by electricity from the doorbell wiring. If that battery is too cold to charge, it will eventually shut down. The same is true if you use a solar panel to charge your Google Nest Cam. Google says it charges trickle and doesn't power the camera directly, so it will run out of juice in the cold.

While its battery-powered cameras (Nest's first in the category) can operate in temperatures down to -4 degrees Fahrenheit, Google's new support page now lists a minimum charging temperature of 32 degrees Fahrenheit. The support article states that the battery may still power the device at low temperatures, but it will not charge and may drain faster. Google warns that at minimum operating temperatures, the battery can last less than half its life in hot weather.

So if you've bought a Nest Doorbell and live in a part of the country where temperatures are lower, what can you do? Google says you should take the entire doorbell down and bring it to "a warm place" to charge (something you may already be doing if it's not connected to the doorbell wiring).

If you're not sure if your device is affected, you can check in the Google Home app that if your doorbell is too cold, the device will say "charging pause" or "charging slowly" with a longer estimated charge time .

This isn't a problem unique to Nest's battery-powered cameras. The rechargeable lithium-ion battery struggles in cold weather. Ring has a support article on its site that explains how its doorbell and camera battery are affected when temperatures drop. However, most Ring cameras have the advantage of swappable, removable batteries that are easy to bring indoors to charge.

For those of us in hot climates, Google says not to worry: The Nest Camera battery can still be charged up to 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

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