How to Install Your Own DIY Security System

How to Install Your Own DIY Security System

Ask This Old House home technology expert Ross Trethewey installs a DIY security system.

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Time: 1-2 hours

Cost: $800 and up

Skill Level: Beginner

Tools List:
Philips screwdriver

Shopping List:
DIY Security System
Motion Sensors
Smart Doorbell Camera
Indoor Security Camera

1. Plug in the security system hub at a location near the front door. To prevent it from being unplugged, it comes with a outlet cover plate that will hold the plug in place. That is installed using the same screw as the cover plate.
2. Download the app that corresponds with the security system and then scan the hub’s QR code to register it to your phone.
3. Scan the motion sensors using the app and then secure them to desired doors and windows using the provided adhesive. Put the motion sensor on the trim or wall closest to the door and window, and place the contact sensor on the door and/or window itself.
4. Rewire the smart doorbell camera to the existing doorbell chime using the screwdriver. Replace the doorbell cover plate outside with the smart doorbell. This should only require a few screws.
5. Identify any vulnerable areas in the house that have not yet been covered and install an indoor camera to cover those areas. It just needs to be plugged in and the QR code will need to be scanned.

Ross installed a variety of different sensors and cameras that are manufactured by Nest (, including the Nest Secure alarm system, Nest Hello video doorbell, Nest Cam IQ Indoor, and Nest Detect motion sensors. To install these devices, all you need is a screwdriver.

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Keywords: This Old House, How-to, home improvement, DIY, ask this old house, ross trethewey, security system, install, smart home technology

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Microphonix Virtual Studio says:

If I were to get a security system, I would want a Mercedes Benz style key, to activate or deactivate the system. You do not have to remember codes but you do have to insert it into the controller.

marc says:

I did everything mentioned in this video and now I can't get inside my house…..

thechosendude says:

So the door sensors were wireless and battery powered… How long does the battery last? I'm guessing it varies by the amount of door openings to wake it from low power state. I really don't want to have to charge them every 6-12 months.


Fyi, best to have hard wired system over wifi. Most diy sets use 2.4ghz range or up to 5ghz which easily can be intercepted over the air and then your "in home cams " become a privacy nightmare. You can upload to your own hidden DVR or cloud system on your own FREE TERMS!Also add a UPS or battery backup, sophisticated crooks kill power to a home then enter, a wired powered system using pot tech etc may have always on power and ya might not need ups. Backup your system with a simple game cam on a tree, battery powered backup that can record video or pics for months!

Richard van Pukkem says:

That backpack of him was at the beginning of the video worth 1000+ $ lol. I also use a lot of Nest products, but this video is just one big Nest commercial instead of a DIY video. More like BIY (Buy It Yourself).

Microphonix Virtual Studio says:

I actually have the best security system anyone can get. Everything, in my house and that includes my car, belongs to God. If he wants, to give it to someone else, He is more than welcome to do that. What I found out, is that God has a very good reason, in all cases and usually, He replaces it with something of equal value or better. Either that, or He just wants to bless someone else.

david carney says:

What if you don’t have a smartphone?

muchosa1 says:

Put your router on a ups to keep wifi active during a power outage

sunflower power says:

And sometimes the security company doesn't respond.

One 7 Decimal 2 Eight says:

best security system. 12 gauge with 00 buck shot.

sunflower power says:

I saw on a crime show that Intruders can cut the outside wires on the professional security systems… so I very interested in this method.

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