Can the Ring Video Doorbell work without Wi-Fi? What if they disconnect?


Ring Video Doorbell No Wifi

Ring devices can most definitely be considered a Smart device or an Internet of Things (IoT) device, and smart devices most often require internet access. Ring uses Wi-Fi to connect to the internet. Ring devices are usually on the exterior of the house, and it’s not uncommon for them to lose Wi-Fi.

Can the Ring Video Doorbell work without Wi-Fi?

Ring Video Doorbells will not work without a Wi-Fi connection. The Ring Doorbell will not record or store any video, or store notifications of rings or motion events. All these are cloud-based services. The exception is the Snapshots feature, which requires a Ring Protect Plus plan.

Snapshots will be stored on your Ring Doorbells flash memory, which is only a couple of megabytes (aka Not Much). Once your doorbell is reconnected to Wi-Fi, snapshots that are stored in memory will be automatically uploaded to Ring’s cloud servers. If the flash memory’s storage limit has been reached, the oldest snapshots will be deleted to make room for the newer ones.

Related Content: How to Change the Wi-Fi Network on Your Ring Camera or Video Doorbell

This question really raises up a whole bunch more questions. What happens when your Ring Doorbell loses Wi-Fi? IF it normally has a solid connect, why did it loose Wi-Fi? And perhaps the most important question, how do you reconnect it back to Wi-Fi?

I will answer those questions in this article.

What Happens If Ring Doorbell Loses WIFI Connection?

The short answer is Nothing. Literally. Nothing happens when your Ring doorbell loses its Wi-Fi connection.

Therein lies the problem.

The Ring Doorbell will lose all functionality when it happens to lose its Wi-Fi connection, with the exception of taking snapshots at the set intervals. You will not be notified of lost Wi-Fi connection, and the Ring will not record or notify you of any activity. Ring’s service is completely cloud based.

What normally happens when the Ring has a Wi-Fi connection is that it detects an event, such as motion or someone ringing the doorbell.  It notifies the Ring cloud servers that it detected an event and is about to start streaming video to the server.

The cloud server will do what is called a handshake to let the Ring Doorbell know that it is ready to receive the video, and then the doorbell starts streaming video. The Ring Doorbell simply does not have the built-in memory to store video clips, even if they are very short clips.

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Ring Video Doorbell Elite & Stick Up Cam Elite work without Wi-Fi

The couple of Ring devices that I have installed all required Wi-Fi, as most Ring devices do, but the Ring Video Doorbell Elite and Stick Up Cam Elite receive both Power and Internet over PoE (Power over Ethernet), therefore they do not require Wi-Fi.

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Note the distinction between Wi-Fi and internet there. Wi-Fi and Internet are not the same thing, although many people use the terms interchangeably. All Ring devices will require an Internet connection because Ring’s services are cloud based.

Related Content: Can Ring Cameras and Other Ring Devices Be on Different Networks?

For most Ring devices, not having Wi-Fi means your device does not have an internet connection. Hence, it cannot connect to the Ring cloud servers.

Why did my ring doorbell disconnect from WIFI?

The importance of a good Wi-Fi and internet connection has been established. Simply put, your Ring Doorbell is a paper weight without a solid connection. We know that Ring will not work without Wi-Fi, so what might be causing your Ring Doorbell or Camera to disconnect from Wi-Fi?

Power and Networking issues are the primary reasons Ring Doorbells, Cameras and other Ring devices to be disconnected from Wi-Fi. Power issues include power outages, loose wires, and low batteries. Network issues include weak signal strength, Ring cloud outages, and Wi-Fi password changes.

Of course, there are a ton of other reasons that could cause your Ring Doorbell or Camera to disconnect from Wi-Fi, but those are the most common ones. I would start the debug process assuming one of those happened, unless you have good reason to think otherwise.

Fixes for Ring Network Issues causing Wi-Fi to Disconnect

Ring Doorbell Has Poor Wi-Fi Connection or Lost Wi-Fi Connection

If dropping the Wi-Fi connection is something new, you can start by checking your router. I’ve had routers in the past that would periodically just freeze up and would have to be reset by being unplugged and then plugged back in.

You can check your router by taking a quick look at it and making sure the RX and TX lights are flashing. If you’re not familiar with what light means what, I find that normally more than one light flashing means your router is working okay. You can also use a device connected to the internet through that router to make sure it is working correctly.

If you are unsure, it only takes a few seconds and doesn’t hurt anything to reset the router.

There our times when the Internet Service Provider, commonly referred to as the ISP, will lose internet to your house. If you have reset the router and internet is not coming back up, your ISP will usually have a website you can check for outages (IF you can get to the webpage) or a phone number you can call.

If everything checks out fine with your router, its time to turn to the Ring device.

How to Check Signal Strength on Your Ring Doorbell or Ring Camera

If your Ring Doorbell or Camera keeps losing connection, there is one thing you want to check while it is actually connected. In the Ring app, on the Device Health screen there will be a section titled “Network”. Within that section you will be able to see the Signal Strength. Ring will display the measurement in what is called RSSI, or Received Signal Strength Indicator. It’s measured in dBs, or decibels.

Without getting into the technical details, just know that a number closer to 0 is better. The larger the number, the weaker the wireless signal.

Make sure you are checking the signal strength from where the device is actually installed, and that you didn’t bring it inside or closer to the router while you are in the process of troubleshooting.

Steps to check your Ring Devices’ Signal Strength

  1. Open the Main Menu from the Ring app
  2. Select “Devices”
  3. Select the device you are interested in checking
  4. Select “Device Health”
  5. Scroll down to the section titled “Network”

There will be a line titled RSSI.

Here is how Ring defines the quality of signal based on the RSSI number

“-66 to -90 is critical and will likely cause a loss of functionality or be unable to maintain a usable connection the wifi altogether.

-65 to -41 is sufficient. Possible video issues if constantly at -60.

-40 or better is virtually no interference and a very strong signal.”

Source: https://community.ring.com/t/how-it-works-your-ring-device-rssi-good-vs-poor/229

If the signal strength is not sufficient, you basically have two options: Get a range extender or move your router closer to the Ring Doorbell. Ring recommends using the Ring Chime Pro which has a Wi-Fi range extender built in to it.

If you have a Ring Doorbell, it’s unlikely you will want to reposition it to somewhere with a stronger signal. (A little sarcasm.)

Ring Disconnected after Wi-Fi Password is Changed

It is not secret that changing passwords every so often is good security hygiene. One thing people tend to overlook though is updating all the devices that connect to a Wi-Fi network after the Wi-Fi password has been changed. Let me show you have you can update the password.

Steps to Update Wi-Fi Network Password on your Ring device (Camera, Doorbell, or other)

  1. From the Ring app, open the Main Menu
    The Main Menu can be opened by selecting the three bats in the top left corner of the app.
  2. Select “Devices”
  3. Select the device whose Wi-Fi needs changed
  4. Select “Device Health”
  5. Select “Reconnect Wifi Network”
  6. Select the Wi-Fi network
  7. Enter the Wi-Fi password

Network issues caused by Ring Cloud Server Outages

In not-so-rare instances, Ring will have an incident with their network. Each outage may or may not cause an issue with your device’s connectivity, but there have been widespread outages in the past where users had to sign out and sign back in to gain network connectivity.

Ring has a website where you can check the status of the servers, it is located at https://status.ring.com/

Fixes for Ring Power Issues causing Wi-Fi to Disconnect

Once you ruled out network issues, you can start checking for power related issues causing your Ring to drop its Wi-Fi connection.

How to Check your Ring Doorbell or Camera for a low battery

Ring normally sends notifications of a low battery, but it’s not uncommon for them notifications to be turned off. They can sometimes be annoying, or you may be in a situation at work where you can’t have your phone alerting you.

Also, it can get confusing for those of us with several Ring devices to keep track of what device we were notified about and to think we changed/charged the battery, but really only took care of one device and not two.

There are a few places you can check the battery level, and if it the battery is low.

First, if you go to the list of devices, it will show under the name of the device if the battery is low. Otherwise, it will say “Online”. Here is an example

https://i.redd.it/fqy55268hyy41.jpg

Secondly, you can go into the device’s menu and check the battery level. For hard-wired devices like the Ring Video Doorbell Pro or Elite, you can also check the power status here.

Steps to check your Ring Devices’ Battery Level

  1. Open the Main Menu from the Ring app
  2. Select “Devices”
  3. Select the device you are interested in checking
  4. Select “Device Health”
  5. Scroll down to the section titled “Power Status”

Ring & Power Surges

I don’t know how common this issue actually is, but Ring does mention that power surges are common, so it must happen to enough people. My guess is would be power surges from lightning storms causing power fluctuations in a home. I know here in Texas; I will see my lights flicker at least a few times throughout the Spring storm season.

Apparently, this is enough for your Ring to lose connection and not connect back. Unfortunately, there isn’t really a solution for this problem. Power surges are going to happen. Ring should be smart enough to be able to reconnect by itself.

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How do I reconnect my ring to my WIFI?

For the times where your Ring Doorbell or Ring Camera are not able to reconnect to the Wi-Fi network with out a little extra help, here are the steps.

Steps to Reconnect the Wi-Fi Network on your Ring device (Camera, Doorbell, or other)

  1. From the Ring app, open the Main Menu
    The Main Menu can be opened by selecting the three bars in the top left corner of the app.
  2. Select “Devices”
  3. Select the device whose Wi-Fi needs changed
  4. Select “Device Health”
  5. Select “Reconnect Wifi Network”

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