Helpful Tips When Buying a Back Up Camera
Backing up and out of your driveway can be pretty tricky. Yes, you may have your rearview mirror to help you out, but this mirror only shows you a fraction of what you should be seeing. No wonder many parking mishaps happen when a vehicle is moving in reverse. The good news is that there's one way to make backing up a little easier-and that's through investing in a quality back up camera.
The Back up camera explained
Back up cameras are attached to the back of a vehicle to help the driver see better when moving in reverse. The image created by a back up camera is flipped horizontally, so it becomes an exact mirror image of the original object. Since most back up cameras use wide-angle or fisheye lenses, it's possible to see the entire rear area of a vehicle. This makes it easier for a driver to maneuver his vehicle in reverse. Additionally, back up cameras are angled downward to prevent the driver from backing up into smaller road obstructions.
Types of back up cameras
- Surface-Mounted Back Up Camera- This type of back up camera is placed in the middle of the trunk and is held in place by brackets. Surface-mounted back up cameras are the cheapest back up cameras right now.
- Flush-Mounted Back Up Camera-This camera is installed near the keyhole or the center of the vehicle's rear end. It usually requires creating a small hole on the trunk lid of the vehicle.
- Night Vision Back Up Camera-This back up camera uses infrared lights to help you back up easily when there's very little light available.
- License-Plate Back Up Camera-As the name implies, this kind of back up camera is installed in the license plate. Because of its unique location, there's no need for drastic vehicle modifications when installing it.
- Charged Couple Device Sensor (CCD)-This is the most effective and widely used sensor right now. The CCD sensor offers superb visibility and above-average resolution even in low light.
- Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductors Sensor (CMOS)-The CMOS sensor is used by some vehicle owners because of its affordability. The downside to this sensor is that, unlike the CCD sensor, this one can't handle as much illumination from a bright light source.
Field of vision
When choosing a back up camera, a wide field of vision is a prerequisite because it lets the driver see the entire rear portion of the vehicle. If you want the best field of vision possible, choose sensors that are 0.5 inches in size.
Camera lens size
You have two main lens sizes to choose from: big lenses and small lenses. Big lenses obviously offer better vision for distant objects. Small lenses, on the other hand, give you a wider viewing angle for a more comprehensive field of vision.
Back up cameras can set you back anywhere from 150-450 US Dollars. Prices vary according to the brand, type, and model of the back up camera.
How to Install a Back Up Camera
Back up cameras are useful add-ons that can help maximize your driving visibility-particularly, when you're backing up. With this type of camera, you can see directly where your vehicle is headed as you move in reverse. Now, if you've recently bought a wired back up camera, the following instructions should help you install your new vehicle accessory.
Difficulty level: Moderate
Tools that you'll need:
- Electric tape
- Cordless drill
- Self-tapping screw
Step 1: It's important that you figure out the perfect place to mount the back up camera. To attain the biggest and widest field of vision, the back up camera must be installed at the center of the vehicle's rear end.
Step 2: Back up cameras generally come with mounting hardware. Be sure to use the mounting hardware correctly by reading the instructions in the product manual.
Step 3: Find the reverse light wire and test it using a multimeter. When your vehicle is moving forward, the multimeter should read 0 volts. However, when the car moves in reverse, the multimeter should read 12 volts.
Step 4: Using a solder, attach the power wire of the camera to the reverse wire. That way, the camera activates the moment you move your ride in reverse.
Step 5: Cover the connection of the power wire and the reverse wire with an electric tape.
Step 6: Attach the ground wire of the back up camera using a cordless drill and a self-tapping screw.
Step 7: Test the newly installed back up camera by driving in reverse.
If you followed these instructions to a tee, then the back up camera should work properly. However, if you find that the camera isn't activating when you move in reverse, check its connection to the reverse wire. If all connections appear good, we recommend seeking help from your local mechanic.