A Doorbell, Really?
A few years back we got a Ring Doorbell. I’d be surprised if you haven’t heard of them. They made the news a lot this year with catching package thieves. They are a doorbell with an Internet connected video camera and intercom. This may sound a little useless but the camera has a motion sensor and if you sign up for their yearly service, you get a camera that watches the front of your house and records to the cloud for only $30/year. Thats hard to beat. Not to mention, it can be powered by your existing low voltage doorbell wiring. Done and done.
It may still sound silly, but think of this time. My wife belonged to a wine club. She missed signing for her delivery, two times in a row. The doorbell rang, she got the alert on her phone. This was the third delivery attempt (it got sent back after this) and we were 30 minutes away, downtown. My wife answers and asks the delivery man if he can leave it in our garage, he agrees and she uses our wifi connected garage door opener to open the garage. He makes the delivery, she gets her wine, everyone’s happy.
Well, as you can guess from the picture to the left, they’re a little bulky (unless you get the pro model). That’s fine except our house has vinyl siding. It’s contoured and the Ring doesn’t fit it well. Eventually, I complained enough that a coworker with tools and woodworking skills made me a mount for it. That was great except he accidentally angled it away from my driveway instead of toward it. I lived with it for a year because I was lazy, then I decided to solve the problem.
A friend told me about some trim pieces at The Home Depot that were meant for siding that should fit the Ring. We went over to The Home Depot next to my work and looked at them. No luck, they were the wrong size. My imagination was sparked. This is not a unique problem, maybe just unique phrasing. So I got on Amazon and did some searching until I found the perfect trim piece. It’s a Builder’s Edge Surface Block. It fits right on the siding, it’s probably meant for hanging lights or other trim but it works great for the doorbell as well. You can see my results below. So, let that be a lesson to you. Often, someone else has probably solved your problem, they just might’ve done it under another name. Look around and repurpose to fit your needs. My next quest is a fireproof on site data backup. Yeah, there are cloud options, but it gets expensive to back up digital home video. There’s a couple existing on-premises options but they are super expensive. Wish me luck!