Dash cams are designed specifically for cars and are primarily used to record everything that happens on the road continuously.
While it is possible to use a dash-cam as a home security camera to record events in your home, there are some limitations or things to consider.
We see them especially useful for temporary home security monitoring, not for a permanent setup – and then with choosing the right equipment, you can be very well off using a dash-cam.
Let us discuss how you can use a dashcam for home security and the limitations.
How to Use a Dash Cam for Home Security?
A dash camera can be used for your home security. You can mount them on the front door, window, or porch to record people arriving. They can also be used inside the house to monitor different areas.
Many people want to use dashcams for home security because they do not have enough time and money to install a home security system.
If you are one of these people and you have a dashcam that you are not using, it is good to install it in your home for security reasons. However, it is important to know that dashcams are not designed to record videos 24/7.
Instead, they are designed to use the car’s engine power to record while on the road. The following tips will help you use a dashcam for home security.
Choose the Right Dash Cam, one with Parking Mode.
As mentioned earlier, the main use case of a dashcam is to record everything while driving. Therefore, most of these dashcams start recording when your vehicle is in motion.
However, there are also models on the market that can serve as security cameras for your car, so not dash-cam only…
For example, they can record videos when you have parked your vehicle, as they are equipped with a motion detection function called “parking mode.”
Not only do they record everything that happens while you are driving, but they continue to work even when you are stationary. Therefore, choosing the right dashcam that fits your home security needs is important.
The most popular Dash Cam with Parking mode is the Rove R2-4K Dash Cam, with parking and motion detection and even has time-lapse video functionalities that can be applied to your home security just as well.
Provide The Right Power Source
As mentioned earlier, a dashcam runs off your car’s battery. Therefore, if you want to use it for home security, you need to make sure that you connect your dashcam to a constant power source because the battery life is not enough.
Depending on your dashcam, you either need a power inverter like the Bestek power inverter:
Or many dashcams also can work with your mobile charger or USB–C port.
You can power many dashcam models with your mobile device’s charger. Needless to say, it’s crucial to check for this.
Consider Video Storage and Quality
Home security cameras for your home can record videos in high quality and have a large storage capacity. On the other hand, you might have to look for adequate storage space and can record high-quality footage depending on your needs.
Besides, a dashcam with a large storage capacity and high-quality recording videos takes up a lot of space. So what is the best way to solve such problems?
You can increase the storage capacity of a dashcam that can record high-quality videos by using an SD card.
There are models from SD which offer up to 2 TB of storage. However, you will have to spend a lot of money on these models. If you have a small budget, you can opt for an SD card that offers 32 or 64 GB of storage.
Is 32 or 64 GB Enough for a Dash Cam?
If you have a dashcam that can record video in 720p or even 1080p resolution, you can use a 32- or 64-card GB SD. A 32 GB card can easily record 40 hours of 1080p video at 25 frames per second.
If your dashcam records videos in 720p resolution, a 32GB card can easily store 4 days of videos.
So, it is more than enough to record footage in your house if you have to go on a trip with your family and leave your house for a weekend.
The best thing about the dashcam SD cards is that they are much cheaper than the micro SD cards that traditional security cameras use.
Micro-SD cards offer better read/write speed, but the difference is not very much. Therefore, we recommend that you stick with an SD card if you want to use a dashcam for home security and want a budget-friendly setup.
Dash Cam and Motion Detection
Some dash cams for vehicles have a motion detection or “parking mode” feature that can record suspicious activity while your car is parked. These dashcams work like traditional home security cameras, thanks to this feature.
Motion detection allows the camera to start recording as soon as it detects motion in its frame. This feature is very useful for monitoring your pets and children, but be aware not all dashcams have this feature!
The most budget-friendly and popular option is the 30mai Dash Cam Pro Plus+.
Some dash cams have a built-in radar system that detects a change in visibility within six to eight feet. While you can use these dash cams for home security, they need to be very close to the subject to detect movement.
Important Note: Cheap dash cams that advertise these advanced features are not very capable, especially in motion detection, and should be avoided. They start recording when the full view is filled most of the time. So, it is advisable to use only high-quality dashcams if you need a motion detection feature to trigger recording.
Dash Cams without Motion Detection Feature
Continuously running your dashcam constantly to record everything on your property is not smart, especially if you do not have much storage space.
We recommend using a Wi-Fi-enabled dashcam to capture footage before anything happens.
This means that you can turn on your dashcam remotely whenever you think it’s necessary, and it will automatically record and save the video to your laptop or computer.
This way, you do not have to keep your dashcam on. However, this approach also has some problems, including the following:
- Many dashcams do not have a feature that allows you to connect them to the Internet.
- Depending on the range of your WIFI signal, your dashcam may not work properly.
- A single dashcam with motion detection is not enough if you want to monitor your entire apartment or house.
Traditional House Security Camera Vs. Dash Cam
Both home security cameras and dash cams offer different monitoring functions. While you can use dash cams for home security, they are designed for different purposes, and it is recommended to use them for their intended purpose.
Below are the main differences between the two, which will help you understand why a dashcam is not the best device for monitoring your home and ensuring the safety of your property.
Dash Cam Purpose and Functions
A dashcam is installed in the dashboard of your vehicle and uses the car battery for real-time monitoring. Most dash cams only work when your vehicle is in operation.
Some models have a motion detection/parking mode feature, but they still need to be close to the object to detect motion and start the recording function.
Dashcams are available on the market to record hours of video footage and have some advanced features like driver alerts and voice control. In addition, they have built-in memory and an SD card slot that you can use to increase the storage capacity.
You can also use these cards to transfer your video files to your computer or laptop.
House Security Camera Purpose and Functions
A surveillance camera for your home has advanced features like face detection and motion detection. They are specifically designed to monitor and protect your property and constantly record video.
They can inform you immediately in case of theft, vandalism, or burglary.
Some have a built-in battery, while others need to be connected to a constant power source to work.
You can also use an external battery for these cameras to keep them running in a power outage.
Most security cameras can also be connected to the internet to store the recorded videos in the cloud in real-time.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the Main Purpose of a Dash Cam?
The main purpose of dashboard cameras is to record everything that happens on the road while you drive. They allow drivers to contact the police with evidence to bring reckless drivers to justice.
Some dash cams can also be used as in-car security cameras thanks to “parking mode” when you need to leave your vehicle unattended. In addition, they provide you with video evidence if your vehicle is stolen, vandalized, or broken.
Can You Use a Dash Cam as a Home Security Camera?
Technically, you can use your dashcam as a home surveillance camera, but there are some limitations. It would be best if you found the right way to power it.
Also, you need to buy a separate SD card to increase its storage capacity. Most importantly, they usually do not have the advanced face detection, and motion detection features that traditional home security cameras offer.
While using a dashcam for home security is possible, we recommend using a traditional home security system. You are on a tight budget.
You can use a dashcam for this purpose, especially if you already have a dashcam or need to monitor a property temporarily. Then using a dashcam can be a really good solution, with the right chosen one.
We hope this guide will help you turn your dashcam into something you can use to monitor and protect your home.