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Motoring retailer Halfords has introduced five new retro-fit reversing camera kits for car drivers, as it expects the number of motorists using parking cameras to soar.
These parking gadgets include a camera, usually fitted on or just above the rear licence plate, which links to either a separate screen or a reversing mirror, or with the most expensive version to your existing in-car display (if compatible). This gives drivers a clear picture of what’s behind them when reversing.
According to a recent poll of 2,000 motorists by Halfords, 20% of drivers think that having a reversing camera would improve their driving, and 32% would feel safer driving a car fitted with one.
In a Which? survey of 1,410 people conducted in September 2017 we found that 62% of people have parking sensors on their car but only 26% had a rear-facing parking camera. People are keen on the idea though, with 70% of people indicating that parking sensors would form part of their vital buying criteria on their next car and 40% saying the same thing about a reversing camera.
Reversing cams are expected to be the latest trend, following the growing popularity of dash cams.
Visit our dash cams reviews to find out why they’ve proven to be such popular car accessories.
What’s the difference between reversing cameras and dash cams?
Reversing cameras are a special type of video camera that give you better visibility when you’re reversing or parking, through a display on your vehicle’s dashboard or by providing a split-screen view on your rear-view mirror. Some even provide parking guides on the image to help you manoeuvre.
Dashboard cameras are designed to record high-quality video footage while you drive and could help you to prove what happened, or protect you from false claims, in the event of a crash. There are several types, including front-facing and dual front- and rear-facing cams.
Our guide to dash cams explains more about the different types and the functions you should be looking for.
Why use a dash cam or reversing camera?
Both dash cams and reversing cameras are designed to give drivers peace of mind. As cars get wider and parking spaces seem tighter, many people struggle to get their car parked. Although parking sensors are becoming more common, they only go so far to help you get the right angle as you reverse, or to detect those bollards hidden in your blind spot lying in wait to dent your bumper.
Dash cams can provide valuable video evidence in the event of an accident, helping to prove who was at fault. Some car insurance firms are now offering discounts to those who use a dash cam. Axa, Swiftcover, Adrian Flux and Sure Thing are just four of the insurance companies offering discounts of up to 20% for customers that use dash cams to record.
However, as usual, terms and conditions apply, and discounts may only be available to new customers of those using certain dash cam systems.
Visit our guide to car insurance discounts for dash cam owners to find out more.
Dash cams to depend on
The main reason to buy a dash cam is to be able to prove what happened in the event of an accident. But this will depend on you having a good image of anything that occurs. If the image quality isn’t high enough, you might not be able to use your footage in the case of an accident to prove you’re not to blame.
We’ve found plenty of Don’t Buy dashboard cameras in our dash cam testing, with models that are very difficult to install and provide unusable video footage. With so many dire dash cams around, it’s important to choose wisely.
Visit our list of Best Buy dash cams to take a shortcut straight to the dash cams that are easy to install, provide great-quality images and won’t get you in trouble with the law for using them.