Dashcams have become common devices in many vehicles, but you should consider their disadvantages before installing one in your car.
What are the disadvantages of dashcams?
The disadvantages of dashcams are:
- Driver Distraction
- Privacy Infringement
- Low-Quality Footage
- Storage Issues
- Performance Issues
- Increased Theft Risk
- Legal Consequences
After extensively researching customer reports from dashcam owners, I have gathered enough information to determine the disadvantages of these devices. In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at the potential safety risks and legal issues that dashcams present.
What’s a Dashcam?
Much like the name suggests, a dashcam, or dashboard camera is a camera that’s mounted on the dashboard of your vehicle.
Most people who use dashcams, install them to continuously record traffic while driving in case of an accident.
If an accident were to take place, the driver would have footage that could be used as legal evidence to support their position in court. For this reason, some people keep a dashcam on the front of their vehicle facing forward, as well as a rear camera to record the traffic behind them.
In addition, dashcams can be very useful to help resolve other legal matters.
For example, if an accident were to take place with other cars, your dashcam footage could be very useful to determine the facts of the incident.
The Disadvantages of Using Dashcams
Dashcams have been around for years, and their popularity has steadily increased since they were first introduced to the market.
As camera technology continues to become more advanced, installing a dashcam in your car is easier than ever. However, dashcams can also present certain safety risks and, in some cases, lead to legal complications.
To help you understand if a dashcam is right for you, we’re going to take a closer look at the disadvantages of installing one of these devices in your car.
1. Driver Distraction
When you get into the driver’s seat of your car, it’s imperative that you are fully focused on the road without being distracted. Most states have made it illegal to use certain devices such as smartphones while you are driving for this very reason.
A dashcam can potentially be just as distracting as a smartphone if it’s grabbing your attention while you are driving.
A lot of people have a hard time staying focused when screens are present, which the display of a dashcam can certainly do for many drivers.
2. Privacy Infringement
One of the most controversial things about dashcams is that they can potentially violate a person’s privacy. Most people want to be asked for permission before they are recorded, and in some states such as Massachusetts, it’s actually a legal requirement.
Granted, the majority of dashcam recordings are not intended to infringe on anyone’s privacy and are simply used for legal protection.
While using the footage for personal/legal reasons may not be a privacy issue, using the footage publicly or commercially can have some serious legal consequences.
3. Low-Quality Footage
With more dashcams on the market than ever before, there are a lot of third-rate products available that do not offer the best quality footage.
Unless you are buying a high-end dashcam, then odds are you may be recording in low resolution.
This can be problematic if you needed to use your dashcam footage in court to benefit your case. Low-quality footage is generally harder to analyze, and if the video quality does not hold up, your recordings could be as good as useless.
If you want to avoid the issues that come with low-quality footage, then you need to buy a decent dashcam that can record in high resolution.
These cameras have great video quality and their recordings are much more reliable when used in legal claims.
With that said, buying a good dashcam is not cheap. You can expect to pay upwards of $250 to $400 for a decent dashcam that can record in 1080P, which is simply more than what most people are willing to spend.
5. Storage Issues
Buying a nice dashcam that can record in 1080P or better implies that you need to have a lot of storage space on a cloud or external drive to keep your video files.
High-resolution video files can be very demanding when it comes to storage, with 1080P videos taking up as much as 1.4GB per hour of recording time.
While this may not be such a major issue if you only use your dashcam periodically, it can become problematic if you keep your dashcam running every time you drive. If you use your car for 1 to 2 hours per day, this means you may be recording upwards of 15 to 20GB per week.
Transferring video files on a weekly basis can become tedious, to say the least. Drives who use their dashcams frequently generally need to transfer their recordings at least once per week.
Ultimately, adding a dashcam to your vehicle is time-consuming and it becomes an unnecessary weekly chore for many drivers.
7. Performance Issues
Tech devices are only useful if they actually work. Performance issues are quite common with dashcams, especially on low-end models.
Many drivers have experienced problems with their dashcams failing to record and videos glitching out while in record mode, resulting in unusable footage.
In addition, some performance issues involve the video files themselves, with some drivers reporting corrupted files after recording footage.
The bottom line is if the dashcam does not record when it’s supposed to, it could fail to capture important footage relating to an accident; defeating the purpose of having one installed
8. Increased Theft Risk
If you want to ensure that your car is secure, you need to hide or remove any valuables when parking.
Thieves look for anything worth stealing, which often includes wallets, smartphones, and other electronic devices.
While a dashcam may not be at the top of a thief’s priority list, a potentially valuable electronic device mounted on the front of a dashboard is an open invitation for many criminals to make a move on your car.
9. Complex Installation
Some dashcams are very minimal and can be easily mounted on your dashboard without complex installation. However, there are plenty of models that need to be wired under your dashboard.
These types of dashcams are difficult to install and many vehicle owners end up seeking out professional help to ensure the device is set up correctly. If done incorrectly, you may end up draining your car’s battery.
This can take a lot of time and it potentially requires you to pay for labor to get the dashcam installed properly.
10. Legal Consequences
Although dashcams are intended to legally protect you in case of an accident, they can sometimes have the opposite effect. Your dashcam footage will only benefit you if the recording serves your position in court.
Incriminating dashcam footage can work against you in court given that it can be used to prove you were at fault (if you were).
- Dashcams are cameras that drivers mount on the front of their dashboards to record potential traffic incidents for legal protection.
- Drivers should be aware of the disadvantages of dashcams, as they can potentially result in increased safety risks as well as legal isses.
- The disadvantages of dashcams include driver distraction, privacy infringement, low-quality footage, expensive, storage issues, time-consuming, performance issues, increased theft risk, and legal consequences.