A popular accessory for motorhomes is an on-board camera. Over the last few years they have enhanced the driving experience and assisted with a number of aspects of life on the road.
If you’ve not used one before then you may be unsure as to the benefits of installing one so here is the lowdown on what to think about when buying one and how they could make your next adventure even more relaxing and enjoyable.
There are two main kinds of cameras on the market; front-view and rear-view. The ultimate benefits come from having one of each as you can enjoy all the features they offer as they give an all-round view of the road or parking environment as well as offering an added sense of security and peace of mind in certain scenarios.
A front-view camera can give you useful evidence if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident or if there is an accusation of driving violations such as not stopping at a red light or at a pedestrian crossing.
Front-view cameras are compact and don’t impede on the driving visibility in any way. They are easy to install as they just use a sucker-mount which means overall they are discreet and easy to move.
When driving a large vehicle, it’s always beneficial to be able to have a good view of what is happening at the rear of the motorhome. Not only does it give added safety to you and other vehicles behind you, when manoeuvring it can make the difference between a smooth reverse and an expensive coming together with objects such as bollards and fence posts. With 10% of insurance claims linked to hitting an immobile object or third party when reversing and related damage claims mounting to an average of over £1500, a camera is a wise investment.
There’s a wide variety of models available for both front and rear view cameras.
The first aspect to consider is the size of the monitor; many are 5” or 7” and some are larger – or smaller. The next feature you should think about the actual view you want to cover such as just pointing downwards for when you’re reversing or one which can also give a view of the road behind you.
Many people now have a sat nav so may be concerned that adding another monitor to the driving area may clutter the space, but choose a camera with a GPS feature and it can be connected to the existing sat nav so just one screen carries out both jobs.
For front-facing cameras, you may want the option of sound, particularly if an incident you may be presenting as part of a motorhome insurance claim is reliant on verbal or audio evidence.
There are a number of wireless systems on the market and whilst this may be the solution if you have a caravan or fifth-wheel unit, there’s no more work in running a cable between a camera and monitor as there is finding separate power for the wireless unit. If you do choose wireless, you’ll enjoy a clear image on the screen as technology has certainly moved on. Whereas with analogue models there was often the loss of signal and interference, digital wireless products have excellent communication systems and fantastic visuals.
Cameras then are certainly very beneficial. Whether you’re an experienced driver of larger vehicles or you’ve just taken delivery of your first motorhome, shop around and have a look at just how useful they are.
Being safe on the road is paramount so when you’re planning your next holiday, have a look at whether cameras would mean you can tackle those extra difficult reversing movements or mean you will have a permanent record of your road trip from the viewpoint of your cab.