Many facilities use closed circuit television (CCTV) as part of an overall security system. Cameras mounted on buildings or ceilings transmit signals to a central monitoring room. CCTV takes two forms ---hard-wired or wireless. A technician just starting out in CCTV has to gain a knowledge base of how CCTV works, so he will be able to install, test and troubleshoot systems.
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Troubleshooting Signal Loss
The picture on the monitor should never be fuzzy or have interference patterns. If it does, signal loss is occurring somewhere in the system. Technicians have specialised testing equipment and know how to use them in order to troubleshoot systems. Usually, a technician starts at the camera and works her way back to the receiver. She checks each connection until the test equipment indicates a loss. Some common problems are corrosion due to moisture inside the connectors or cables chewed through by animals.
CCTV technicians can't be afraid of heights. Cameras are mounted high on the sides of buildings, or high in the ceiling areas of stores. You have to use a boom lift to reach spots to mount cameras. If you suffer from vertigo or become queasy at heights, becoming a CCTV Technician may not be a viable career path.
Cables are installed from the camera to the receiver station. You will have to drill through masonry block and crawl through hot attics and below floor crawlspaces to run the cable. Be prepared to navigate through tight cramped quarters to get the cable from the camera to the receiver. Bring along a change of clothes, since you will get dirty in the process. .
Final Testing and Teaching
A technician tests the system after it's installed. This involves knowing how to aim the cameras, knowing how to operate the monitoring equipment in the security room and knowing how to instruct the final operators of the system. You have to be part teacher, which sometimes becomes strenuous. You may have to deal with people who have no knowledge of how a CCTV system is operated, so you have to use layperson-friendly language during the training process.
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