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How a Dash Cam Offers Parking Mode Protection

When it comes to keeping your vehicle safe, a reliable dash cam does more than record your trips, whether at work, at school, or on your travel journeys. With the dash cam’s parking mode feature, it becomes your vehicle's mindful protector—even when you are not present—all you have to do is hardwire it! In this article, we will look at six ways parking mode features have your back.

Worried about hit-and-runs and vandalism?

If you park your car in busy parking lots or urban areas frequently, you may also have to deal with crowded sidewalks and congested streets. If you own a vehicle that attracts a lot of attention, this may increase the likelihood of pedestrians, cyclists, and other vehicles accidentally brushing against or colliding with your parked car when passing by or getting a closer look.

One of the worst experiences for a car owner is having their car vandalized. You return to your parked car, only to discover scratches or key marks etched into its paintwork or worse, broken glass and rocks through the windows! This is frustrating, especially if your car is brand new, of considerable value, or has been well-loved for years!

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We recently featured an incident in which a New York-based driver named Francisco parked his Toyota RAV4 on the street, which was gouged by a commercial truck. The good thing is Francisco installed a four-channel dash cam with parking mode in his SUV to record the incident. There, he found that it was almost a hit-and-run, because the commercial truck driver left, and only came back 15 minutes after the incident since many people have witnessed it.

As we see with Francisco, with parking mode activated on your dash cam, you gain a robust layer of defence for your vehicle. This feature automatically records any sudden impacts or collisions, capturing the entire sequence of events leading up to the incident. Whether due to malice, recklessness, or a simple accident, your dash cam silently records all suspicious or undesirable activity around your vehicle, serving as unquestionable evidence. This not only helps in identifying the perpetrator but also expedites insurance claims, ensuring swift and decisive action against incidents like hit-and-runs and vandalism. Additionally, if your dash cam is equipped with Cloud capabilities, you can receive real-time updates and remotely monitor your vehicle anywhere in the world through its remote live-view function, further enhancing your ability to respond to and manage incidents.


Worried about leaving your car for a loooong time?

There will be times when you have to leave our car parked and unattended for longer periods of time. If you are going out of town for a week-long vacation or a work trip, parking mode will not cause you to worry about the safety of your vehicle. Whether you're lazing on the beach or attending meetings, your dash cam is constantly monitoring activity surrounding your car 24/7. From potential theft attempts to unanticipated mishaps, parking mode keeps you informed no matter where you travel.

With that being said, most dash cams will only last between 3-8 hours in parking mode when connected to your car battery. This duration can vary due to factors like the battery's age and health, which naturally deteriorate over time, reducing the available charge. Dash cams typically feature voltage cut-off to prevent draining the battery below a safe threshold, often set between 12.0V and 12.2V. This voltage cut-off feature ensures that the car battery remains healthy by stopping the camera from drawing power before it reaches a level that could compromise the battery.

Learn More about how Parking Mode works here

Fortunately, there are a couple of ways to counteract this and ensure you get the long-term parking mode protection you need: battery packs and energy-efficient dash cams.

Battery packs act as a dedicated key-off power source for your dash cam, isolating it from the car battery so its parking mode can operate without any risk of draining it. As a result, your dash cam can fully utilize the battery pack’s charge to achieve significantly longer parking mode runtimes. Our flagship battery pack, the PowerCell 8, features a large capacity of 96 Wh, allowing you to achieve up to 35 hours of parking mode protection with a dual-channel dash cam. If that’s not enough for you, you can also daisy-chain Cellink Neo Extended Battery Packs to a PowerCell 8, with each one adding nearly double the base capacity.

 

Meanwhile, energy-efficient dash cams use advanced technology to consume less power during parking mode, enabling longer runtimes without needing an external battery pack. Take the Thinkware U3000, for example, which uses radar technology to detect motion and activate the camera sensors during parking mode. This allows it to run on a true standby, consuming next to no power if no activity is detected. Traditional dash cams, on the other hand, utilize their camera sensors to detect motion during parking mode, essentially always having one-eye-open, staying alert and watchful. This, unfortunately, results in higher power consumption as the camera sensors are always active during parking mode.

By combining battery packs and energy-efficient dash cams, you can build a system that provides ultimate long-term parking mode protection. For example, if you combine the PowerCell 8 and the Thinkware U3000, you can achieve up to 20 days of parking mode protection on a full charge with radar motion detection, or 40 days when running with impact detection only!


Worried about freezing or overheating your dash cam?

Extreme weather, particularly blazing heat and freezing cold, can damage your dash camera, and while you’re away from your vehicle, temperatures can skyrocket inside. This is important if you typically park your vehicle outside or live in a region with cold winters like Calgary, New York or Montreal, or hot summers like Texas or Arizona.

Most dash cams will typically shut the dash cam down if the temperature exceeds its rated range. While this will minimize the likelihood of the dash cam being damaged by the temperature, it also means you won’t get any parking mode protection until temperatures return to normal. Fortunately, our dash cams are built with good thermal design, and supercapacitors to ensure the camera remains intact, but some models can continue recording, even in extreme weather.

The AI Heat Monitoring feature in the FineVu GX1000  and Thinkware’s Smart Parking Mode, found in models like the Q200 and U3000, ensure that the camera stays active through extreme temperatures. This feature restricts the dash cam’s operation, so it only records incidents triggered by impacts until the temperature is safe enough for it to resume Motion Detection or Timelapse recording. Thinkware even takes this temperature further, adding a unique and innovative Heat Blocking Film that comes with every Q1000 and U3000, ensuring that heat isn’t absorbed through the adhesive sitting on the windshield.

Check out how to Beat the Heat with a Dash Cam  


Worried about having your dash cam or vehicle stolen?

Thieves are always looking for easy targets, and parked cars are prime candidates for their nefarious activities. While a dash cam watching over your vehicle at all times through parking mode is a formidable deterrent, if the camera itself is too flashy, large, or otherwise conspicuous, it may become a target too. With a discreet dash cam setup, the chances of thieves knowing they’re on camera will be far slimmer. Dash cams with small form factors, like the Thinkware F70 Pro or any BlackVue, are ideal for creating discreet setups as they can easily be mounted in inconspicuous locations.

Learn how to install a dash cam discreetly.

However, even a discreetly installed dash cam can be vulnerable if a vigilant vandal spots it. Most discreet dash cams are simply plugged in and clipped into their mounts, with minimal security measures to protect access to their SD cards, where all the evidence is stored. This allows them to be easily unplugged, stolen, and cleared of any recorded evidence. In such cases, Cloud Dash Cams prove to be invaluable, as they offer an added layer of security by storing footage remotely.

Proper Cloud dash cams automatically upload footage to their respective Cloud servers. They spring into action and upload footage to the cloud when they sense thieves breaking into your vehicle or tampering with your dash cam. This means that even if the dash cam is disabled, destroyed, or otherwise tampered with, important footage is still safely secured on the cloud, easily accessible anywhere you have data.

Cloud dash cams are also ideal if you’re worried about having your vehicle stolen, thanks to their GPS tracking and remote live-view capabilities. By supplying your Cloud dash cam with a constant Internet connection, either through a Wi-Fi hotspot or integrated cellular connectivity, you can elevate it from an already powerful security system into the ultimate tracking device for your vehicle. Unlike other tracking devices that are available on the market, which will only show the location of your vehicle on a map, Cloud dash cams’ remote live view features will also allow you to see and hear what’s going on around (and sometimes inside) your vehicle.

Even though Cloud dash cams address many shortcomings of their less-connected counterparts, they can only do so much when thieves can still disable them, steal them, or clear them of local evidence. This is where tamper-proof solutions come into play, with BlackVue at the forefront.

BlackVue has always been the leader in tamper-proof solutions, and they took things even further by introducing the DR770X-3CH Box, DR970X-2CH Box Plus and DR970X-2CH Box IR Plus. BlackVue engineered these dash cams to be tamper-proof by design, including more compact camera units, with the brains and SD card housed separately within the namesake Box unit. This design allows for extreme flexibility during installation, allowing you to mount the compact cameras in many discreet locations while hiding the Box unit in an inconspicuous location, like a locking glove box or hidden compartment in the trunk.

Furthermore, every unit in a BlackVue Box system has its own secure casing to safeguard the cable connections and SD card. Without specific tools, these casings cannot be removed, preventing thieves from disconnecting the cables or removing the SD card without causing any damage to the system. On top of that, the Box unit also features an audible alarm that will sound and attract attention if any cables are cut or disconnected.

Lastly, all BlackVue Box systems are Cloud-enabled, meaning you can enjoy the benefits of a Cloud dash cam with a unique tamper-proof design via a Wi-Fi hotspot or the CM100G LTE module. When paired with a long-lasting battery pack like the B-130X or PowerCell 8, BlackVue Box systems can be transformed into the ultimate connected security solution that keeps your vehicle safe around the clock.

Find out how a BlackVue Box system can stop thieves.


Protect Your Car with Parking Mode Protection!

In essence, parking mode transforms your dash cam from a passive observer to an active guardian, providing comprehensive coverage for your parked vehicle in various situations. Whether it's protecting against premeditated acts of vandalism, preventing pedestrian accidents, or reducing the chance of theft and break-ins, parking mode keeps your vehicle safe and secure no matter where you park it. So, the next time you leave your car unattended, rest easy knowing that your trusty dash cam’s parking mode has your back!

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