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Hardwiring a Dash Cam to Your Electric Car

Hardwiring a Dash Cam to Your Electric Car

Given the increasing numbers of Electric Vehicles (EVs) on the road, we have often been asked the following question:

“What is the best way to install my dashcam in my EV for parking mode?”

With a conventional gas-operated vehicle, the answer is quite simple: to attain parking mode, the camera will need to be hardwired to the fuse box. The Power Magic Pro from Blackvue and the direct BlackboxMyCar/Thinkware hardwiring kits would suffice in most cases, while a dash cam battery pack such as the Cellink NEO is always recommended. The Power Magic Pro and hardwiring kits enable cut-off voltage to be selected on the dedicated module or within the camera’s internal settings. When the vehicle’s battery voltage drops to the determined cut-off point, power is cut to the camera, and thus allows sufficient charge for the vehicle to be started.

With EVs, there is a common misconception: “My car is powered by a large battery which should offer ample power for the dash cam. Using a hardwiring kit should allow for parking mode for as long as this battery has charge”. Unfortunately for EV owners, this is not the case. Electric Vehicles (Teslas are no exception) have a very small 12V accessory battery for powering the electronics upon initially entering the vehicle (this includes and is not limited to door locks, windows, etc.). Because of this, when hardwiring a dash cam to the fuse panel to draw from this battery, the amount of recording our customers have been able to attain is very limited.

Example: One of our Tesla Model X customers received 4 hours of parking mode recording with his DR750S 1-CH. His PMP was set to 12.0V (lowest setting available).

Our Solution

In order to bypass your EV’s accessory battery, we strongly recommend installing an external battery pack such as the Cellink NEO or Blackvue B-124 battery pack with your dash cam. This would be wired to an ignition-switched ACC line that activates when your vehicle is “ON”, or to a similarly switched 12V socket in the cabin.

It may seem redundant having to install a battery in an electric car. However, doing so will prolong the life of your accessory battery as well as increase protection for your vehicle. Having a dedicated dash cam battery pack will not only allow your cameras to record for a longer period of time in parking mode, but you will always be able to operate the starting functions of your vehicle with ease and without worry.