Trail Camera Troubleshooting

Having problems with your trail camera?  Let's see if we can help.

There are more, but these are the most common problems we run into:

  • LCD displays going out
  • Black night photos
  • Sd card error messages
  • Cameras taking photos continuously with nothing in the camera (aka "runaway cameras")
     So what is the solution?  There may not be one but here are the three things you should immediately do for any problem.

  1. Format the SD card in your computer.  This resets the camera.  Many times, sd cards can lock up causing problems with the camera.  Formatting the card erases all data from the card.  To format a card: place the card in your computer, go to "My Computer," right click on the folder the sd card is under, select "Format," and then hit "starts."
  2. Check to make sure the batteries are in the camera properly.
  3. If they are, replace the batteries (or test them with a ZTS Battery Tester if you have one) with new batteries.  See video below for proper way to test your batteries.

If you have attempted these three steps and the camera still does not work, then the camera is defective.

There are two ways to deal with a defective camera that is still under warranty. 

If you purchased from us...
     We hope that you have purchased the camera from us and if so, you may still be under our 90 Day, No Questions Asked Return Policy or 2 Year Exclusive Warranty.  If you are, click that link and fill out the return form and we will quickly get you taken care of.

If you purchased your camera elsewhere...

     You should immediately contact the company you purchased from and see if they have a return policy you can use.

Manufacturer Warranties

     Manufacturer warranties are pretty standard, most companies have a one year warranty against defect, HCO and Reconyx both offer 2 year warranties on some of their products.

What happens to your camera when sent back?

American made cameras
     Reconyx is the only American made trail camera we have.  They can repair and troubleshoot cameras even after the warranty is over.

Canadian made cameras
      Spypoint cameras can also be repaired (they are built in Canada).  Many times, if the warranty on a Spypoint or Reconyx is up, they will simply charge you whatever the part costs them to fix the problem.  This saves you from having to purchase a brand new camera and throwing the defective camera away.

Chinese made cameras
     The majority of trail cameras are made overseas in China.  Of these cameras, the manufacturers are unable to repair or modify the cameras.  If it is under warranty, they simply replace the camera with a new one.  Once the warranty on the camera is over, there is nothing that can be done to fix it.  Usually it ends up in a landfill.

     We always welcome phone calls (1-800-791-0660) or emails, but all we can do to troubleshoot cameras is go over the steps at the top of the page.  
We are the best source for the latest news in the Trail Camera Industry.  However, we do not make any of the cameras.  We simply test, review and sell the different models. 

     The best source for a difficult technical scenario will always be the technical support crew at your specific manufacturer. These crews are trained specifically for the models they manufacture and are the best source for solving any technical problem you might have.  We have listed their contact numbers below.

Covert (DLC)
HCO Scoutguard
Leaf River
Smart Scouter
Stealth Cam
Wildgame Innovations