Garmin BC 30 Wireless Backup Camera for DriveTrack
A quality backup camera like the Garmin BC 30 can significantly enhance rearward visibility for drivers and, thus, help minimize the risk of “blind zone” accidents whenever your vehicle is moving in reverse.
Take the Worry out of Backing Up
When paired with a compatible GPS navigator, the BC 30 wireless backup camera helps you easily spot vehicles, pedestrians, pets and other hard-to-see obstructions behind your vehicle. If the camera is wired to your reverse lights for power, your navigator can automatically display camera footage every time the vehicle is shifted into reverse – and go back into navigation mode when shifted into a forward gear.
See Clearly What Needs to be Seen
As another option, you can wire the system to constant power, which allows you to toggle between the navigation display and backup display modes at the press of a button. The transmitter will send camera footage to your navigator’s receiver mounted up to 45 feet (13.7 meters) away (range varies based on installation; some vehicles may require an extension cable, sold separately).
Professional Installation Recommended
For installation, Garmin recommends taking the BC 30 to your dealer. But if you’re a diehard do-it-yourselfer, that’s an OK alternative as well. You’ll need to mount the camera on the rear of your vehicle and connect it to a power source, such as the rear lights. The BC 30 is rugged enough to withstand even the harshest of weather. And up to 4 cameras can be used together in 1 system, for multiple viewing angles.
How to Add a Wireless Backup Camera to a Garmin GPS
Attach your Garmin integrated mount to your four-hole bracket with the four included screws. The "ball socket" in the front of the Garmin mount should be facing the driver.
Attach your mount bracket to its windshield mount following your manufacturer's instructions.
Remove your car battery's negative (red) then positive (black) leads with an adjustable wrench. Remove your car's stereo, following your particular model's specifications and mounting diagram. Remove the stereo's antenna cable and wiring harness.
Connect your new vehicle integration box's wiring harness to your car's harness for power, stereo and speakers. Hook up the AV cables to the back of the box to listen to music or watch video through your Garmin device. (If you have the VIB11, there is a "traffic receiver" that must also be connected at this point with its antenna adapter cables.) Reconnect your antenna cable.
Attach your GPS reverse camera's wiring cable to the corresponding port (labeled PND) on the integration box. Run the cable along with your rear speaker wiring to the back of the car, and tie the cable with wire ties to other cabling to secure it along the way. Return the stereo carefully to its slot in the dash and reconnect the car battery.
Connect your power cable running from the integration box to your mounted reverse camera. Snap your Garmin device into its cradle and turn it on. Test out the video image.
Dan Harkins has been a full-time journalist since 1997. Prior to working in the alternative press, he served as a staff writer and editor for daily publications such as the "St. Petersburg Times" and "Elyria Chronicle-Telegram." Harkins holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of South Florida.
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- While it’s a good idea to get in the habit of using your backup camera, make sure you physically check your blind spots as you back up. Turn around and glance in either direction before pulling out of a parking space.
- If you’re not sure how to install your backup camera or GPS unit, go online. You can easily search for the product and find helpful tips, hints, and tricks for installing it correctly.
- If you drive in inclement weather, make sure to clean off your backup camera. Remove any snow that’s built up so you have a better view as you back up. Rinse the lens off with a bit of water if you’re traveling in muddy terrain.
- Backup parking guide lines vary by product. If you’re unsure which type of lines are most helpful, research which products use what types of lines. Ask friends and family if you can practice backing up with their cameras to see what each type looks and feels like.
- Front cameras—and even backup cameras—can be useful if there’s an accident. You should be able to retrieve the footage and establish what went wrong.
- Some backup cameras include an audible sound to let drivers know how close they are to the object(s) behind them. If you have trouble backing up, invest in a system that will alert you audibly, so you can develop safer reverse habits while avoiding potential collisions.
Q: Are there wireless backup cameras available?
A: Yes, there are wireless backup cameras like Pyle's Wireless Rear View Backup Camera that you can buy. While most of the wireless cameras may not have a GPS unit built in like the products in our review, installing one can still improve the overall safety of your vehicle.
Q: Do I need a Wi-Fi connection to use my GPS with a backup camera?
A: No, not necessarily. For example, most GPS units use satellite connectivity in order to connect to a network of available maps. A Wi-Fi connection may be necessary for other applications on your GPS system, but you’ll have to check each individual product for more details.
Q: Will a GPS navigator show the speed limit?
A: Some products will display the speed limit. Some vehicles that are even a few years old will have this function built into the system already, but it’s a feature you can get through aftermarket GPS units as well.
Q: How often are GPS system maps updated?
A: Updates vary according to the GPS unit’s manufacturer. Map updates can come every so often or every day; it really depends on the navigation system you choose. Many systems rely on Google Maps, so they’ll only be updated as Google schedules its updates.
Q: Will most GPS navigation systems pair with my smartphone?
A: The majority of GPS units on the market today will connect to a smartphone, whether you own an Android or an iPhone. The smartphone link is achieved via Bluetooth in most cases, and if your unit is so equipped you can enjoy features such as turn-by-turn directions, voice commands, and more.
Q: What other brands offer a GPS navigator system?
A: Pyle and TomTom are just a few of the other brands that produce GPS systems. Some will come with a backup camera kit, while others do not. Check with each individual manufacturer and corresponding products to find the match you’re looking for.
The Garmin Drive GPS Navigator System won our top pick for the best GPS with a backup camera. It comes preloaded with maps and is easy to use.
Our value pick is the Garmin Drive 52 & Traffic because it comes with several nice-to-have features at an affordable price.
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