How to Wire a Security Camera

By Tony Breedlove

Wiring a security camera does not require a professional; if you are handy with some basic tools, you can learn how to wire a security camera. A security camera uses three connections; the camera power, which includes a positive and negative wire, and the camera signal. Siamese cable has three wires; the camera signal coax wire and two power wires, which are red and black. The camera signal cable requires a RG-59 BNC connector on each end. Your camera came with a power supply which looks something like a cell phone recharger. The camera power supply cord will be cut in half and connected to the power wires on each end of the Siamese cable.

Things You'll Need

  • RG-59 BNC connectors
  • RG-59 crimping tool
  • RG-59 stripping tool
  • RG-59 Siamese wire
  • BNC barrel
  • Wire cutter
  • Standard wire crimp tool
  • 22-16 AWG insulated butt splice connectors
  • Electrical tape

Step 1

Separate the power wires from the coax wire on each end of the Siamese cable.

Step 2

Strip the coax with the coax stripper and install a BNC connector on each end of the coaxial cable, using your RG-59 crimping tool according to the instructions which came with the BNC connector.

Step 3

Cut the camera power cord in half. Split both ends of the power cord a few inches and strip all four wires about ½ of an inch. Strip the ends of the Siamese cable power wires about ½ of an inch.

Step 4

Connect the power supply wires to the Siamese cable power wires on one end using the insulated butt splice connectors and crimp them with a standard wire crimp tool.

Step 5

Connect the camera power cable to the other end of the Siamese cable power wires the same way you did in the previous step.

Step 6

Connect your camera to the Siamese coax through the BNC barrel, plug the power cable into your camera and plug the camera power supply in. Connect the Siamese cable coax to your video monitor or video recorder and ensure you have a signal. Wrap the wire and insulated butt splice connectors about one inch past the connectors with electrical tape to protect them from corrosion. Wrap the BNC barrel, connectors and wire with electrical tape the same way.

Tips & Warnings

  • There are videos on YouTube which show you how to install BNC connectors; watch a few of them to familiarize yourself with the process. Before doing this the first time, do a trial run with about six feet of Siamese cable. It will only cost you a few connectors and a little wire, but you will understand the process much better and you will gain some experience installing BNC connectors.
  • Make sure you connect the red wire to the positive wire on the camera power supply in steps 4 and 5. The positive wire on the camera power supply cord is usually indicated with a marking like a dashed line or a ridge on the insulation. There are different types of BNC connectors and crimping tools; make sure you buy a crimping tool which will work with your connectors. You may be tempted to use twist-on BNC connectors because they do not require crimping. However, these connectors are not secure and have a high failure rate. Also, you may want to use wire nuts instead of insulated butt splice connectors, but they too have a high failure rate.