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There are people who need a backup camera system that only comes on during reverse, and those who want it to stay constantly on. Some backup camera systems are designed specifically for reversing, but there are also systems that are designed to always stay on.
So, the simple answer is: Yes, backup cameras can constantly stay on, if you wire them correctly. Following are 3 popular wiring methods, to have an ‘Always On’ backup camera system:
1. Constant Power Supply
You can connect the camera to a constant power source, and simply have it always on. The cigarette lighter socket, is the most convenient way of doing this. You could also get the power straight from the fuse box, although you will need to know exactly what you are doing.
One advantage of having your backup camera system always on in this way, is that you can use it as a security system, if your monitor has a video recording function. The disadvantage is that your vehicle’s battery could get drained, when you don’t use the vehicle for a while.
2. Connected to Ignition
It is also possible to connect the camera or camera system to the vehicle’s ignition. Using this method, the camera will only come on after the engine has been started.
This method protects the vehicle’s battery from being drained, and is also a very popular ‘Always On’ camera method, used in commercial delivery vans and trucks.
The connection does not have to be directly at the ignition. Simply connecting to any device or cable, which is controlled by the ignition system, is sufficient.
3. Manual Switching
The third method is the use of a button to switch on the camera at will. This means that the system will be directly connected to a power source like in method #1, but the cables will then be run through a switch.
When connected this way, the system can be switched on, either with a running or a stopped engine. One advantage of wiring the camera this way, is that you have absolute control over it.
The disadvantage though, is the risk of battery drain, whenever you park the vehicle and forget to switch of the camera system.
When you decide to install an ‘Always On’ backup camera system, there are certain issues to consider, so that you can avoid unforeseen problems. These include:
- Fused Power Sources: Cigarette lighter sockets are usually fused. This means that your devices will be safe in the event of a power surge. If you decide to connect directly, then make sure that the power supply is fused. If you fail to use a fused power source, then you risk damaging your backup camera system.
- Adverse Weather: Adverse weather conditions are a certainty. When installing an ‘Always On’ system, you are best advised to use a reliable camera, which is proven to withstand extreme weather conditions. This way, nothing will stop your camera from staying on.
- Battery Drain: This one is a little tricky. If your camera system stays on after you have killed the engine and parked the car, it will continue to use energy from the battery. It’s hard to say how long it will take before a vehicle’s battery will be completely drained, but it’s safer to not leave the car unattended for more 2 days.
Our System Can Handle It!
Our backup camera systems undergo many rigorous tests before leaving the factory. This makes them ideal for tough-jobs like this. All of the possible conditions that could lead to a faulty backup camera system, have been tested and passed, allowing you to install our products with full confidence.
Yes, backup cameras can always be on, you just need a good quality product and the right installation skills. If you have any further questions concerning backup cameras, or if you would like to inquire about our systems, please do not hesitate to contact us.