Looking for a dash cam that would keep an eye on your car, even when your car is parked and the engine isn’t running? You need a dash cam that has a parking mode feature!
With a dash cam that has parking mode, you’ll be able to sleep at night knowing that you’ve got eyes on your car in case anything happens to it.
But which dash cam should you get?
Like everything else related to technology, there are plenty of choices to choose from when it comes to dash cams. Each gadget comes with its own special features and tech abbreviations.
So, to make your life easier and to give you that peace of mind you so much deserve, we’ve gathered a list to help you find the best dash cam with parking mode that fits your lifestyle.
- What Is a Parking Mode On a Dash Cam?
- Top 5 Dash Cams with Parking Mode
- Key Features to Consider
- Installation Tips for Dash Cams with Parking Mode
- Legal Considerations
- Wrapping Up
What Is a Parking Mode On a Dash Cam?
Parking mode on a dash cam is a feature that allows the camera to record events around the vehicle while it is parked. Unlike regular dash cam operation, which records continuously while the engine is running, parking mode activates the camera only when built-in motion detectors sense visual or physical motion.
This functionality is essential for capturing incidents like hit-and-runs or vandalism when the car is unattended. The benefit of parking mode is that it conserves storage space and battery life by not recording continuously, but only when it detects motion.
Additionally, dash cams with parking mode can act as surveillance cameras, potentially capturing incidents involving nearby vehicles as well.
Top 5 Dash Cams with Parking Mode
Our top five picks of the best-selling dash cams, featuring a variety of features and price ranges, are ready to help you find the one that suits your lifestyle.
- Dual Channel 1080p Full HD: Captures high-quality front and rear footage, ensuring detailed images day and night.
- Wide Viewing Angles: 140° front and 160° rear angles provide comprehensive video coverage with minimal distortion.
- Wi-Fi Connectivity: Enables wireless viewing, saving, and sharing of recordings via the THINKWARE DASH CAM LINK app.
This dash cam is an absolute fan favorite. It offers many top-of-the-line features, like night vision, full HD/1080p recording, and a built-in GPS tracker. However, that’s not the reason people love this camera.
This dash cam’s unique technology allows it to get its power from your car’s battery, even when your engine’s turned off. This technology allows the camera to switch on the minute it detects motion and shows you the whole story.
On the other hand, other cameras that depend only on batteries either take a while to turn on, or they need a strong impact (like a car crash) to begin recording. That way, you won’t have any footage of what happened before your car was hit.
Finally, don’t worry about your car’s battery. Thinkware F770 has an auto shut-off feature to avoid draining your car’s battery overnight. It only turns on when needed, and turns back off when nothing’s around your car.
Front camera with full HD1080p resolution
Clear footage at night with its night vision feature
Built-in GPS tracker
Relies on the car’s battery for power
Auto shut-off feature
- Relatively more expensive than other dash cams
- Single 4K Dash Cam: Offers crystal clear front recording at 4K resolution, ensuring detailed and legible images in all conditions.
- Front and Rear Hidden Dashcam: Simultaneously captures wide-angle front (170°) and rear (160°) views in full HD, providing complete coverage discreetly.
- Built-in GPS with Live Speed Display: Tracks driving route, speed, and location, viewable on the dash cam and compatible GPS players.
If you want a great dash cam that doesn’t break the bank, this is the one for you. Vantrue S1 has proven to be one of the best budget-friendly dash cams that also offer a parking mode feature.
The parking mode feature on this dash cam uses motion detection, but it needs to be connected to an external power source to work. It comes with a supercapacitor as its power source to withstand extreme temperatures and avoid overheating.
Its compact design allows it to pass as almost unnoticeable in your car. It also comes with an 18-month warranty and provides full HD recording.
The main con is that this dash cam only picks up motion on the front end of your car. However, given its great price and performance, many are happily willing to compromise on rear-end motion detection.
- Relatively affordable
- Front camera with 4K quality
- Picks up motion on the front end
- Compact and discrete design
- Comes with an 18-month warranty
- Requires external power source
- Doesn’t pick up motion on the rear end
- Sony STARVIS: Ensures superior image quality in low light conditions, enhancing night vision capabilities.
- Red Light and Speed Camera Alerts: Keeps drivers informed and alert to traffic enforcement cameras.
- ADAS Advanced Drivers Assistance System: Provides safety alerts like lane departure and potential collision warnings for safer driving.
Imagine being able to record ultra-clear nighttime videos with your dash cam. Well, it’s possible with the Sony STARVIS image sensor installed in Thinkware Q800Pro Dual Dash Cam!
With a 2K front camera, a 1080p rear camera, and Night Vision 2.0, you’ll get top-notch image quality around the clock.
This dash cam also features data storage cloud services and GPS trackers to help you detect the exact location of your car. For extra security, you could also install a GEO Fence, which notifies you if your car leaves a specific geographic location.
However, the only problem with the Thinkware Q800Pro Dual Dash Cam is that it comes with a tiny screen, which might affect how clearly you see the recordings. You’ll also need to purchase extra hardware to get the maximum benefit of this dash cam.
You could also skim through your dash cam’s recording much faster than usual with the time-lapse option available for parking mode. To top it off, you get a 1-year warranty when you buy your cam from an authorized seller.
- Sony STARVIS and Night Vision 2.0 for clear footage 24/7
- Built-in GPS tracker with GEO Fence to easily locate your vehicle
- 2K front camera and 1080p rear camera
- Cloud data storage
- Includes a 1-year warranty
- Small display screen
- Extra hardware sold separately
- 4K+1080P Dual Recording: Captures ultra-high-definition 4K and full HD 1080P videos, with wide angles (170° front, 140° rear) reducing blind spots.
- Superior Night Vision: Features an F1.5 aperture lens with HDR/WDR technology for clear recording in low light conditions.
- WiFi/Smart App Control: Enables wireless management, playback, and editing of dash cam videos via a smartphone app.
Last on our list is the BlackVue Dr900X-2CH, which features a 4K wide-angle lens for its front camera and a 1080p rear camera with a STARVIS image sensor. With these specs, this camera is sure to record everything that’s going on around your car.
BlackVue saves its footage on both a memory card and remotely controlled cloud storage. This feature makes sending and receiving security footage from your dash cam through your phone much easier.
If you prefer not to use the cloud storage feature, you still have CM100 LTE connectivity. This built-in Wi-Fi router allows your camera to always be connected to the internet. You’ll have complete control to watch or download any videos and change the settings on your camera.
However, such cutting-edge technology doesn’t come cheap. It’s relatively expensive when compared to the other models. It also doesn’t provide a built-in internet source, which would make it hard to reach your recordings unless you link it to an external source of internet.
- 4K wide-angle lens on the front camera
- A full HD 1080p rear camera
- STARVIS image sensor
- Both memory card and cloud data storage
- CM100 LTE connectivity
- The priciest model on this list.
- May overheat, especially in hot areas.
Key Features to Consider
Other than the parking mode, there are a few key features you should look for in your next dash cam. Each of these features will come in handy in different situations to make your life better, which is basically the core value of any tech device.
So, when you shop for your next dash cam, keep an eye out for these features:
1. Video Quality
A crucial part of benefiting from a dash cam is its video quality (resolution) The higher the quality/resolution, the clearer the recorded footage will be.
Dash cams come in a wide variety of resolutions, but most of them range from 1080P to 2K. You might even come across dash cams that have video quality up to 4K! Those tend to come with a steep price tag, though.
2. Driver Insights
This feature is helpful while on the road. AI detectors and analytics assess the driver’s behavior while they’re driving the car and provide real-time feedback.
For example, if the detectors pick up abrupt acceleration, sudden braking, or unexpected sharp turns, they give feedback to the driver on the spot. This feature is meant to encourage safer driving and reduce accidents on the road.
3. Live Streaming and GPS Tracking
With features like live streaming and GPS tracking, you can monitor the road with real-time updates because you’ll get notified of any sudden incidents. You’ll also be able to track the location of your vehicle at any given time with the GPS tracker.
4. Cloud Storage and Remote Access
Most dash cams use microSD cards to save their records. This works fine, but you might risk having a full memory card at the wrong time, or not being able to reach your memory card if your car is stolen.
That’s why dash cams that store their footage off-site are much safer. You’ll never have to worry about emptying your microSD card every once in a while.
As for the remote access feature, you’ll be able to retrieve your footage without actually being in the car.
5. Battery Life
Dash cams get their power source from two options, either from an external battery that needs to be changed out every once in a while, or from your car’s battery.
The former one is best if you want your dash cam to be on standby 24/7. It won’t matter whether your car’s engine is on or off because the camera is operating on its own batteries.
The latter option works for those who don’t want to keep changing batteries whenever they are out. A car’s battery is a solid source of energy which you could depend on as long as the car’s working.
Installation Tips for Dash Cams with Parking Mode
If you plan to install the dash cam yourself, here are a few tips to help you plug it in safely and correctly:
- If your dash cam uses microSD memory cards, then insert your card after unboxing your new dash cam.
- Connect the power cables from your dash cam to the power source. You’ll usually find a fuse box power cord provided with your dash cam. If it comes with a hardwiring kit, use it for an easy setup.
- Choose a fuse slot that’s always connected to power so your cam will work even if the engine’s turned off.
- Connect the ground wire from the hardwiring kit to any metal part next to your car’s fuse box.
- Finally, connect the power cable to the dash cam’s power port, whether it’s a mini-USB or micro-USB, and hide the rest of the cables under the headliner.
Now, your dashboard is ready for its test drive. Take your car for a quick drive around the block, then park it and test your dash cam’s parking mode. You could always go back and fix any issues that come up.
Setting up a dash cam with parking mode in your car is 100% legal in all states. However, there are a few rules you need to follow regarding the footage you get from the dash cam.
An article published on ScienceDirect under the title Legal Regulations of the Use of Dashboard Cameras: Aspects of Privacy Protection highlights that you must be conscientious about what you do with the recordings of your dash cam.
The article calls for balancing the right to privacy of the people around you with your right to safety. Even if you mean well by installing a dash cam, remember that people featured in your recordings have the right to protect their privacy.
So, can you connect a dash cam to your car for your safety? Yes. Are you allowed to post the dash cam footage publicly? No, that would be violating people’s privacy.
If you leave your car parked outside on the street all night, you absolutely must install a dash cam with a parking mode feature. You never know when you’ll need it until you do.
So, to ensure the safety of your car, we’ve brought together our favorite pick to help you find the best dash cam with parking mode out there.
Do your research and scroll through the different features and models until you find the one. When you do, order it immediately! You shouldn’t leave your car any longer without protection. Stay safe, put up a dash cam, and enjoy your peace of mind.
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