Dash cams are small cameras attached to the dashboard or windscreen of a car, and they record each journey.
They typically cost between £50 and £250
The camera faces outwards, capturing the driver’s view of the road
Some dash cams can also record the view from the rear of the car
Most dash cams automatically overwrite older footage, meaning every journey can be recorded without worrying about running out of memory.
There are many different makes and types of dash cams available, at varying different prices. If you are going to buy one, think about what quality of footage you want, how much of the road you want to cover, and whether you want one that has a night-recording feature. Some of the more expensive dash cams on the market automatically upload and save the footage in the event of a major crash, even if the dash cam itself is impacted.
Having a dash cam means you can provide evidence to the police and your insurance provider if an accident is not your fault.
As a dash cam records and stores footage of the driver’s view, it’s easy to revisit the events and conditions leading up to a road accident.
Many insurers now accept dash cam footage as evidence when processing claims, and this makes it easier to determine the cause of the accident and which party was at fault.
And the increased use of dash cams acts as a deterrent against so-called crash-for-cash claims, which involve fraudsters deliberately causing accidents and then claiming insurance payouts for ‘injuries’.
Although a dash cam can prove that an accident was someone else’s fault, if an accident is your fault then a dash cam can prove that, too.
A dash cam left on display can prove attractive to a thief, so if it’s portable and you can remove it when you’re not using your car, try to remember to take it with you – or at least hide it in the glove box.
Meanwhile, a badly-installed dash cam can block your view when you’re driving, and can be illegal.
A dash cam can cut your car insurance premiums, but it depends on your provider.
Some providers give a discount of up to 20% if you use a dash cam because they believe it will make you drive more safely, in the same way having a black-box policy can cut your costs.
But if you tell your insurance provider that you have a dash cam and then you don’t turn it on, they could refuse to pay out any claim you make and you risk having your policy invalidated.
The number of insurers that offer a discount for drivers who install a dash cam is growing. They include Adrian Flux, Axa, Admiral, Diamond and Elephant.
As with all policies, shop around to try to get the best car insurance deal.
Yes, dash cam footage can be shown in court as evidence, although the footage needs to be clear.
Even if you are not involved in an incident, your footage can be used in court.