A Safer Pathway to Camera and Sensor Maintenance

A Safer Pathway to Camera and Sensor Maintenance

Tending to camera, sensor, and general surface cleaning maintenance – that is overdue – while staying safe

The video cameras and sensors your business has invested in provide you with the protection you need to be safe as well as the information you need to keep operations running smoothly. These systems likely routinely undergo software upgrades or routine maintenance – which is essential. But what about their physical condition? Are you doing your part to ensure they are clean so that they can operate at peak performance? A dust-encrusted video surveillance camera lens can render any video unusable. A dirty traffic light or optical fire sensor can have disastrous consequences.

Just as you schedule and rely upon the software maintenance for your physical security and network devices, you should incorporate a physical maintenance plan as well, to keep your products clean and in perfect running condition. Dotworkz has developed the perfect do-it-yourself solution that can save time and money while improving the performance of your equipment.

Dotworkz has spent a decade developing a line of safe cleaning tools that are easy to use, and that do not break the bank. As a U.S.-based manufacturer of professional grade camera housings and accessories for security, broadcasting, research and OEM camera systems, Dotworkz has provided solutions for extreme environments. They understand the long-term damage that Mother Nature – or even just routine use – can in- flict upon video surveillance cameras and sensors, which is why this group has been committed to making sure these types of products can remain clean and in perfect working condition once the integration process is over.

What could go Wrong?

A lot can go wrong if you or your clients do not regularly clean your exposed products. Optical fire sensors in particular are hard to reach, yet they often get clogged with dust, insect webs– and the like – and need to be cleaned. Debris and dust make cameras miss important events, which you will likely only become aware of when you need to retrieve important video and find that it is unusable. Public monitors and digital signs are dust magnets, which makes them harder to read, but also makes for an unkempt community appearance. Solar panels run more efficiently and cooler when they are clean. Traffic safety signal lighting must be clear of ice and snow to ensure the best visibility.

There are dozens of real-world examples that illustrate the need for routine cleaning. And there have been solutions including hiring companies that come out and clean devices on a regular basis via bucket trucks. But most companies cannot afford to hire a service to come and clean their equipment, which may require stopping traffic, hanging from roofs and similar, oftentimes risky, methods.

How it Works

The Domewizard is essentially a supported MicroFiber cleaning mitt that sits on the end of a 10-, 25- or 40-foot, extendable oval carbon fiber pole. The device is designed to envelop via a three-mode shape option for a camera or sensor, cleaning all areas and crevices. There are no ladders or lifts required, which makes it truly safe DIY. The device works on all outdoor/indoor dome housings, mini domes and even static box housings. It is engineered for video surveillance cameras, traffic signals and cameras, some of which are installed in casinos, airports, office buildings, on bridges, airport structures, street lighting and smart city applications.

Real World Examples: Cities, Schools and Integrators

A city manager recently shared that the manpower and time it took to keep cameras and traffic lights clear made the task of cleaning something they could never even consider doing. The cameras are high up and collect pollution and dust, plus the sheer number makes hiring a service cost prohibitive. But it is essential to keep the cameras clean, especially since they include a facial and license plate recognition functionality. For this particular city, employees were each provided with a Domewizard 25 model and they implemented a DIY-cleaning program using the Dotworkz solution. They have been able to maintain and clean devices with regularity, safety and affordability.

School districts are large purchasers of video surveillance equipment but being budget-conscious entities, they typically cannot afford to hire outside help to clean cameras. By deploying a DIY solution that maintenance employees can use themselves while they routinely visit campuses, they are able to ensure their equipment is cleaned on a regular basis, as needed and at minimal added cost.

Integrators are also a great benefactor of DIY cleaning solutions such as the cleaning tools because they can help them service the large accounts they often routinely manage. One integrator partner shared that prior to using the system, the task of cleaning cameras on customer sites could add days of additional labor for technicians. But now, because it is an easily portable tool, techs simply carry the Domewizard 10 with them and clean cameras on the way back to their trucks in just minutes while already at a client stop. The customers are grateful for the added value that the camera cleaning delivers, especially since a clean camera or sensor can reduce false motion alarms, saving money and improving service.

Oftentimes when someone invests in a large camera deployment or sensors, the maintenance focus is on the technical aspect of the equipment, keeping the software or virus protection up to date. But it is essential to remember to physically maintain equipment primarily by keeping it clean. The Domewizard is patented, and after many years of research other products are meant to be shared as the best tools to keep these essential investments running the best they can, for the longest period of time.

This article originally appeared in the November / December 2020 issue of Security Today.

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