Why Do I Need a Dash Cam?
Sales of dashboard cameras are sharply increasing as more and more drivers worldwide are embracing this technology for security, safety and that much-needed peace of mind. Here at Pacific Elite Collision Centers El Segundo of El Segundo, we have seen this evolution firsthand, so here is some basic information about dashboard cameras and how they can serve you in a wide range of different ways.
What is a dash cam?
Mounted on the dashboard, windshield or in another convenient spot within the vehicle, a dash cam records video while the car is in operation. Police and fire departments all over the country currently utilize dash cams to document their actions, collect evidence and use them for training, etc. 15 years ago, the very first dash cams hit the market, but they were clunky and too expensive. A few years ago, the technology improved significantly and the prices dropped. They also became easier to install and maintain and are now loaded with a myriad of performance enhancing features. These include wide-angle views, night vision, GPS to log your location and speed, and multiple cameras in order to record what's happening inside and all around the car. Many dash cams also have a stand-by feature allowing them to capture video if motion is detected while the car is parked.
How does a dash cam work?
First off, dash cams are powered by their own batteries or by either hardwiring or plugging them into the cigarette lighter. Most dash cams will immediately commence recording when the car is started and stop only when the engine is turned off. The primary factor that distinguishes dash cams from standard cameras is their capacity to record without interruption. Once the memory in the dash cam is used up (roughly 10 hours with a 32-GB SD card) the camera will begin recording over the oldest footage. With more advanced dash cams feature G-force sensors that will stop the camera from overwriting data if the camera determines that an accident has occurred.
Why do I need a dash cam?
Most people purchase dash cams for two reasons: 1.) To provide evidence in case of an accident or crime or 2.) Monitor the driving and other activities of their teenage drivers. Video documentation can also help someone who is contesting a traffic ticket in court.
How much do they cost?
The majority of all of the dash cams out there will cost you less than $100, but you can spend as much $300 on the more elaborate models with all the latest bells and whistles. The more expensive dash cams are GPS-enabled and feature things such as a microphone to record inside the vehicle, automatically store footage when an accident is detected and can be removed from the car to take photos of collision damage remotely.
So, here are some facts about dash cams that can hopefully help you for when you start shopping for one. Whatever your purpose is, a dash cam can help you in many ways, so for all our customers here in El Segundo and all over CA, consider getting one if it fits your needs.
Sources: Consumer Reports, MSN and Amazon