Installing your own Ring Doorbell

Having installed lots of Ring doorbells, I’m happy to share some tips and tricks to help you with a successful Installation at your own home.

My professional Ring doorbell installation steps

  • The first thing I always do before installing a ring device is to check the customer’s home wi fi network. It’s stated in the installation instructions Ring supply, but sometimes the customer’s excitement takes over and the box is opened! Your old, hardwired doorbell might not depend on wifi; but the Ring video doorbell most certainly does. And it needs to be a good, strong signal. In the screenshot below, the wireless networks are almost out of range for the bell to work. Lower numbers (-30db to 60db) mean your video doorbell has a better connection to your wireless network. Once installed, the Ring app will warn you of a poor signal, but for a pre-installation check; I use an app (WiFiman) on my smartphone and place it right where the bell will be fitted (on the outside with the door closed). If the signal is good, then it’s on to step two. If it’s poor, you need to resolve (by a wireless repeater perhaps) that before buying a Ring Doorbell.
  • The second thing I check before I drill holes, or look for the mounting bracket (which Ring supplies to allow fitment to brick or wood) is to carry out an Internet test (see example below). A video doorbell needs a rock-solid Internet connection for the camera to send the video to the Ring servers before it can be viewed on your smartphone or i-pad. Once installed, Ring provide a test utility within their app, but this is still pre-installation, remember! You want to ensure everything is going to work before the purchase. If steps one and two are OK, then we are on to step three!
  • Step three is checking the existing doorbell wires. Does a Ring doorbell require wiring? You can install a ring device without being wired to the existing doorbell chime – but it will mean you have to remove the battery (which is really easy to do) to charge every now and again. Just how often will depend on recording duration, how often you use live view (to check and speak with visitors), and the strength of your home’s wi-fi network to name a few. I always check the doorbell wiring and existing chime aren’t going to cause any problems before installing smart doorbells. Bell transformers usually last a long time, although aren’t expensive if it has failed.

With these three checks done, its on to the fun bit – Ring video doorbell installation.

  • I would then switch the power to your existing doorbell chime (usually labelled inside your fuse board) and remove the old push button. If the location is to the left, or right of a typical visitors path; then the Ring angled mounting bracket supplied will help resolve that. It’s ideal to correct the view the camera will need that your previous doorbell didn’t need when it was installed all those years ago.
  • With the correct mounting bracket selected; I’ll mark the mounting holes with a small drill bit and pilot out the frame or wall. I have had to install a doorbell’s faceplate on uneven blockwork so had to install it on a bit of treated timber. You don’t have that problem installing doorbells on upvc because it’s perfectly flat. I will then take a photo of the QR code or five-digit number on the back of the bell to assist with setting up the Ring app later on.
  • With the two terminal screws slackened, I’ll connect the wiring and refit to the bracket using the screws included.
  • At this stage, I’ll now ask the client for their smartphone or i-pad and get the Ring (must choose the Ring always home app from the Apple or Google Play Android store) installed. They need to create a Ring.com account. Once installed, they can log in to the Ring app and choose the video doorbell I have just installed for them. They can select the QR code I took a photo of, or enter the five-digit pin.
  • The battery can now be inserted and the power switched back on. The bell will now go through set-up mode. The lights on the front of the device will spin around and the smartphone with the app installed can connect to it. It will need to connect to the wi fi network. The first thing it usually does is update it’s software which can take up to fifteen minutes.
  • I then install the doorbell’s faceplate using security screws supplied. Ring have been very thoughtful with the packaging, instructions and included wall anchors, a level and special screwdriver!

You may already have a Ring account and therefore purchased accessories such as a Ring chime (also available separately). They have a separate power source and plugged in somewhere central – like the hallway or kitchen / diner area. You can of course purchase more chimes if family members spend time upstairs or in an extension for example.

The app allows you to connect to the chime and select things like the ring tone and what to do when the motion settings are triggered.

More tips and tricks for Ring doorbell chime installation

  • Fully charge the battery with the USB lead supplied before installing your bell to ensure it’s fully charged. Ring video doorbells actually use the battery to work. The doorbell wiring connected to the power source is to trickle charge – nothing more.
  • Keep hold of the included screwdriver! If you need to remove the battery or go through the set-up process again; you will need it.
  • Remove the old doorbell push. It can be confusing for any visitor if you have two or three old doorbell buttons on the front door!
  • Check the motion sensor setting are suitable for you. They have a great range on them, so you might want to use the Ring app to narrow down the view to stop being alerted when a car drives past, or your neighbour has a pizza delivered!