Does a Dash Cam Work When Your Car is Off?

Dash cams can prove invaluable for settling certain disputes on the road. If you have a recording of an incident, you’ll have proof of just what exactly caused the accident, and who was at fault. This has helped settle countless disputes, and secured many people the insurance pay outs they deserve.

But does a dash cam work when your car is off? Can you also use them to catch people who hit your parked car and drive off? Can they help protect your car against theft, and arson?

Does a Dash Cam Work When Your Car is Off? The Importance of Shopping Around

Most dash cams get their power from your car’s cigarette lighter port. This isn’t active when your car’s not running. So most dash cams don’t work when your car is off.

However, you can buy dash cams that offer round-the-clock protection. These dash cams usually come as a set of two – one for the front of your car, and one for the rear. Their cameras generally offer 180° views, so with two cameras you can capture footage a full 360° around your car.

Unlike regular dash cams, these models come with fittings that connect directly to your car’s battery, so they can continue operating even when the engine isn’t running. However, there’s no risk of them depleting your car battery overnight – they’ll automatically deactivate if they detect your battery’s running too low.

Just set the camera to “parking mode” and they’ll continue to record, even when you’re not allowed. Some models even have built in wi-fi with dedicated apps. This way, you can get a live feed of the car’s cameras, even when you’re hundreds of miles away.

What’s the catch? Only that these specialist dash cams cost considerably more than regular dash cams. Plus, as you’ll need to connect them directly to your car’s battery, you may need some assistance in installing them. This will also cost you. But given how useful these cameras could be in settling disputes, perhaps you can justify the added expense?

Head here to see an example of this sort of advanced dash cam on Halfords.

Do I Need a Dash Cam?

Dash cam footage can help you prove that an incident on the roads wasn’t your fault. This may mean that you could avoid paying an excess and can help you protect your no-claims bonus. So dash cams don’t just help people secure settlements. They can also help you to keep the price of your insurance premium down.

As we’ve explored in this post, advanced dash cam models can also play a huge role in preventing and solving crimes. If someone hits your parked car and drives away without leaving a note, a certain type of dash cam can help you track down the guilty driver for compensation. And if thieves, vandals or arsonists target your car, dash cams can gather the evidence the police need to make a conviction, and that you need to get compensation.

But whether or not you decide to get a dash cam, one thing you absolutely cannot do without is car insurance. It’s illegal to drive without it. Head here to get a free quote online in minutes.


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