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Wired v. Wireless Video Doorbells: How to Determine Which One is Right for You


Peer reviewed by Kirk MacDowell

Home Security Expert

Today, decisions about home accessories mostly boil down to features. If your original 1960s doorbell has rung its last ring, you may be considering exchanging it for a wireless model with video. We’re breaking down the myths with 6 head-to-head considerations so you can:

  1. See what the pros and cons of the doorbell options are
  2. Make a decision that works for you

What’s the Difference? 

First off, a wired video doorbell involves connecting wires within the walls. You’ll have an outdoor button and an indoor bell system. Wires then run to a transformer via the circuit breaker box. 

A wireless video doorbell transmits signals to a receiver inside via WiFi and gets power from a nearby outlet or batteries.

Neither is better than the other. However, what’s best for you depends on the following criteria.

🏡 Your Housing Situation

Homeowners with existing doorbell wires can bypass the difficult setup of a wired video doorbell

Apartment dwellers who can’t drill and want to take their doorbell when they move out should choose a wireless video doorbell.

🛠 Installation

Wired video doorbell installation is lengthy and more expensive upfront. You’ll need a professional to run wires. You could also need a professional if wires get damaged (which involves opening walls and rewiring). But once it’s installed, wired doorbells can be maintenance-free for years.

Will you need to make changes to the house at all? Wireless video doorbells won’t require you to run wires through walls (and sometimes into tougher materials like brick). They’re plug and play, making them a great option for DIYers.

💰 Price 

Wired doorbells can be less expensive, between $20 and $200, but expect to pay $200-$400 for professional installation on top of the purchase price.

Wireless video doorbells cost between $20 and $300. The super-simple Kangaroo even gives you photographs without the high price tag. Want a wide-range camera and proper video? Look into Arlo’s line of wireless doorbells.

🔈 Range of Sound

This is comprised of two parts: how loud is the chime and how far does it reach?

Wired doorbells have a bell system that can be heard throughout the house. Wireless doorbells may require multiple receivers in larger homes. You can also have portable receivers that can move throughout your space and can be carried to a basement or backyard. There are also long-range wireless doorbells that can transmit frequencies up to 300 feet.

Tip: If you have a large home, augment your wired doorbell to ring across multiple receivers throughout the house.

🎨 Design 

Wired doorbells come in traditional designs with a range of options to match your house. But if we’re talking video doorbells, your options will look a lot alike whether you choose wired or wireless. 

Wireless doorbells are most often tech gadgets with a sleek car-fob design, typically a little bigger than a traditional doorbell.

In terms of size, neither take up a lot of space but are still larger than a simple traditional doorbell. 

Tip: Design-minded buyers won’t have as many choices with the look of a wireless doorbell, but they’ll get more options for the sound of their chimes.

🚨 Security Features

Wired video doorbells do come with the same security features as wireless models, such as speakers and motion alerts. Be aware they may require more voltage than your current transformer has though, especially if it has older wiring. And these systems won’t always work with your existing chime directly out of the box.

Wireless doorbells come equipped to bring new features. For security, you can attach a camera and motion detector, all sending notifications to your phone regardless of whether you’re home. Many wireless doorbells, like Eufy, come with 2-way speaker features to communicate with someone at your door (you don’t even need to be at home to communicate through the doorbell, either). 

Wireless video doorbells represent the pinnacle of convenience and flexibility in modern home security technology. They cater to the dynamic needs of homeowners and renters alike, offering easy installation and the ability to adapt to changing living situations. This adaptability is crucial for ensuring that security measures can evolve alongside technological advancements and personal circumstances.

Kirk MacDowell, Home Security Expert

Not sure about Arlo versus Eufy? Click here to read our in-depth comparison of the two video doorbells.

Conclusion: You Can’t Go Wrong With a Wired or Wireless Video Doorbell

Homeowners who want a sleek look for their porch without the need to charge a doorbell choose wired. Those with apartments or small homes with easy access to receivers will benefit most from a wireless doorbell option.

Check out the Batten Marketplace for wireless doorbells that give you real-time alerts. You’ll protect your porch from package theft and never miss your dinner delivery again!