nest camera not detecting motion

With your Nest camera not detecting motion, you will not get a notification whenever there’s activity around your premises.

This defeats the purpose of a smart home security system. So, when this happens, you need to be able to find the cause of the issue and the right solution.

If your Nest camera fails to detect motion, the primary culprit is positioning. Move your camera or change something in its view to improve results. If you place it at head level or a little higher, your camera gets a better view. It should be between 6 and 6.5 ft high for optimal motion detection.

Google Nest camera helps show what’s going on at home. However, the technology is not perfect.

You may encounter issues, like the motion detection not working. If that’s the case, you can fix your motion detection problems with simple solutions.

Causes of Nest Camera Not Detecting Motion

There are three main reasons why your Nest camera is not detecting motion.

It may not have enough power to work, or the Wi-Fi may be down in your home. But, the most common cause of motion detection problems is incorrect camera positioning.

1. Camera Not Powered Properly

Like other devices, your nest camera needs the power to work. If you have a wired camera, check the power in your home and make sure your device is plugged into a working power outlet.

Make sure you charge the battery or connect it to power for a battery camera. 

2. Internet and Wi-Fi Connectivity

If your camera is on, but there is no connection to the Internet and Wi-Fi, the culprit could be interference, a weak connection, or inadequate upload speed.

Change the camera settings to use less bandwidth if your connection is insufficient. 

3. Camera Positioning

When positioning your nest camera, consider the things you want to keep an eye on, what can block or affect the view, and the Wi-Fi range.

If you’re going to get a view of people, place the camera at a high level.

If your camera has a tall field of view, keep it at 1.2m high to get a better view of people and packages. If a wall is blocking one side, get a wedge.

Configure your security system properly and purchase your cameras from a reliable company to avoid such issues.

Choose a brand that provides regular updates and bug fixes and has good customer reviews and feedback.  

How to Fix Nest Camera Not Detecting Motion?

nest camera not detecting motion

Google nest cameras use advanced algorithms to pick up motion. If my nest camera is not detecting motion, the following are helpful steps to fix the issue.

Solution #1: Make Sure Your Camera Is Powered Properly

Nest cameras need the power to work. If your internet is down, your camera cannot alert you whenever there is activity.

  1. If you have a battery camera, make sure you charge the battery or connect it to power to ensure your device works properly.
  2. If you have a wired camera, make sure the power is ON in your home. Plug your device into a working power outlet.
  3. If power is ON, but your camera does not work in any outlet, replace the power cables and see if it solves the problem.
  4. Make sure your device has Wi-Fi connectivity. If it is ON but says it’s disconnected, restart your devices. 
Note: To make sure your camera is powered properly, be at home and have physical access to your device. 

This will enable you to perform troubleshooting well.

Solution #2: Check If Your Nest Camera Is Linked to the App

app link

The Nest app enables you to control your Nest camera, access its live stream, and set up push notifications on your phone.

If you are not getting alerts when you expect to, make sure your camera is online on the app.

Here are some signs that say your camera is offline:

  1. The app alerts you that your camera is offline or disconnected.
  2. The app says internet interference, inadequate speed, or weak connection.
  3. The camera status light is blinking yellow or off.
  4. You will find gaps in the video history.

The first step to troubleshoot the issue is to check if the camera is ON. Then, make sure your app runs the latest version.

Note: Your Nest camera may also get disconnected if operating above the specified temperature. 

If the camera feels unusually warm, unplug it and let it cool.

Solution #3: Turn Notifications from Your Camera On

All Nest cameras detect motion and sound and notify you when something happens. But, you have to make sure you turn on notifications in the app.

If you are using the Nest app, make sure all notifications are set correctly for your camera.

  1. Tap Settings on the home screen.
  2. Click Notifications.
  3. Select your Nest camera.
Note: Alerts for Nest cameras are a little complicated since it enables you to select different settings for both motion and sound.

If you are using the Home app, tap Settings > Notifications on the home screen and click the type of notification you wish to update. Tap the switch to update your preferences. 

Solution #4: Move Your Camera or Change the Angle

change camera or angle

Your Nest camera may not detect motion if it loses its connection to the Internet.

Move your camera or change the angle if you can’t see what you want to keep an eye on, if things are blocking the view, or if the Wi-Fi can’t reach your device.

  1. Give your camera a clear view. Check the app to make sure it can see the whole scene clearly. If you get glare, place it a little higher and angle it downward.
  2. Make it visible. To discourage intruders, place your camera, so people notice it.
  3. Zoom. Using its zoom feature, you can place your camera far from what you want to watch.
  4. Mount within Wi-Fi range. Place your Nest camera where your network can reach it.
Note: If your goal is to record outdoor activities, install an outdoor camera to get high-quality videos. 

If you prefer to use an indoor camera to view outside, mount it, so the lens is flush against the glass to reduce glare and avoid windows with a mesh screen.

Solution #5: Reconfigure Your Nest Camera’s Activity Zones

Activity zones help your Nest camera determine when it records something.

Setting up the Activity Zones allows the device to record activity on the zones you’ve enabled and ignore busy or unimportant areas of the screen.

  1. From the Nest app, select the camera with the Activity Zone you wish to reconfigure.
  2. Tap Settings and select Activity Zones.
  3. Choose the zone you want to edit.
  4. Change the zone the way you like, including its shape, size, color, and name.
  5. Tap the check icon to save.

From the Home app, select the camera with the Activity Zone you wish to edit. Tap Settings > Events > Seen events.

Then, update the zone with the changes you want to make. The app saves changes automatically.

Note: If your device detects that even a small part of a notable object is in the Activity Zone, it will record it and notify you.

Solution #6: Manually Update the Nest App

nest app update

If you need to troubleshoot an issue, the key step is to update the Nest app. The latest version of the app includes bug fixes, security patches, and new features that improve performance.  

  1. Open the Nest app.
  2. On the home screen, tap your Nest camera.
  3. Tap Settings and select Technical Info.
  4. The current version will appear next to Software.
  5. Update if there’s a new version.
Note: If you are using the Home app, you will find the software version under Technical Information, which you will find in Device Information.

If your camera is not detecting motion, move your device or change the angle. Something may be blocking its view, or it may be too far away from the area you wish to see. Also, make sure it is online and within your Wi-Fi range.

Read Next: Why Is Alexa Not Discovering Nest Thermostat?

Last Thoughts

If you have trouble with your Nest camera not detecting motion, this post will help you understand why this happens and what you can do to fix the problem.

If you have tried every solution above but still have difficulty with your setup, contact Google Nest customer support for further assistance.

If you think this post is useful and you wish to solve another Nest issue, our blog can surely give you the help you need.

Nicole B