- The Four Best Dash Cams For Uber And Lyft Rideshare Drivers
- Why Uber And Lyft Drivers Need A Dash Cam
- A Dash Cam For Uber And Lyft Provides Evidence If You Have An Accident While Driving Uber Or Lyft
- A Dash Cam Can Help Uber And Lyft Drivers Fight Phony Tickets
- A Dash Cam Can Watch Your Car While It’s Parked
- A Dash Cam Can Protect You Against Fraudsters
- A Dash Cam Offers Some (but not total) Protection Against False Passenger Claims
- Features You Want In A Dash Cam For Uber And Lyft Driving
- Other Uber And Lyft Dash Cam Considerations
As you may know, if you drive Uber or Lyft, you have to protect yourself. Along with rideshare insurance, which every Uber & Lyft driver should get, a dash cam for Uber or Lyft is the best way to make sure you’re fully protected out there on the road.
There are dozens of dash cams on the market. Unfortunately, most dash cams are low quality or lack features that are essential for rideshare drivers. However, we were able to find four dash cams that are high quality, and have all the features an Uber or Lyft driver would want in their dash cam. All four of these dash cams have front and rear dual cameras, so you can record the interior and exterior of the vehicle.
Pros: Both cameras have a 150 degree viewing angle. Supports up to a 128GB micro sd card. Audio recording can be switched on and off. Front camera records at 1080p.
Cons: Rear camera only records at 720p. Audio quality and interior infrared isn’t great. You will need two outlets, or a splitter, to use both cameras. Does not include an sd card. It also does not have GPS.
Takeaways: Overall, the Pruveeo is a pretty good dash cam at a great price. It has a wide viewing angle, and can record the interior, although the picture and audio quality could be better. Being able to switch the audio recording off is great if you live in a state with restrictive recording laws. Some owners have complained that it doesn’t work with sd cards larger than 32GB. Athough the Pruveeo lacks GPS, it’s still the best dash cam available for under $150.
Warranty: 12 Months
Pros: Both cameras have full 1920×1080 HD recording capabilities. The 312D supports up to a 128GB class 10 SD card. Audio recording can be switched on and off.
Cons: Does not include an sd card. It also does not have GPS, a G-Sensor, or parking protection for when your vehicle is unattended.
Takeaways: Overall, the Pruveeo 312D is a great dash cam, and a step up from the C2. It has the same features as the C2, but with significantly better video quality, and a lower profile. It’s a good choice if you’re looking to get a dash cam and an SD card for under $200.
Warranty: 12 Months
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Pros: The Vantrue N2 Pro was the first dual 1080p dash cam on the market. It captures both the front and rear views at 1920x1080p at 30 frames per second. It also boast a front viewing angle of 170 degrees, and a rear viewing angle of 140 degrees. Has 4 infrared lights to enhance interior video, even at low light levels. Has a G-sensor that auto detects a sudden shake or collision and emergency locks the footage to prevent that video from being overwritten. Records front and back cameras to separate files.
Cons: Only supports up to a 64GB sd card. Does not include an sd card. It has a GPS module, but it must be purchased separately.
Takeaways: The Vantrue N2 Pro is a great dash cam with excellent video and audio quality. It fulfills all the requirements of a great dash cam including front and rear high quality recording, high quality audio recording, front and rear infrared, and continuous loop recording. It does not come with GPS, but you can purchase the Vantrue GPS module for an extra $22. The Vantrue also has a parking detection mode that turns the camera on if it detects movement around your vehicle while parked. Overall, the N2 Pro is a vast improvement on the original Vantrue N2.
Warranty: 18 Months.
Pros: The Blackvue DR750S was the second dual 1080p dash cam to hit the market. Its picture quality exceeds the already high picture quality on the Vantrue. Unlike the Vantrue, the Blackvue comes with a built in GPS sensor. It also has a G sensor to detect an accident and automatically lock the footage to prevent it from being overwritten. An sd card is included with most models. Works in high temperatures (rated up to 158 degrees) if you live in Arizona or a similarly hot area. Has built in WIFI so you can view your footage on your phone or in the cloud.
Cons: Pricey. Works best with Blackvue’s sd cards. Infrared interior accessory not available until Q1 2018.
Takeaways: The BlackVue DR750S is the best dash cam for Uber & Lyft drivers available in the world today. It’s not surprising since the older model, the DR650, was the previous holder of the title. While the BlackVue is pricier than most dash cams, the quality and features you get are simply unmatched. Currently, the infrared interior lens is not available yet for the 750, but the Sony Starvis sensors work pretty well unless it’s really dark. If you want the best infrared interior video, you’re better off going for the 650, or waiting until the DR750S infrared lens is released sometime in the first half of 2018.
Warranty: 12 Months.
Recommended SD Card For Dash Cams
When it comes to sd cards for you dash cam, you want a high quality sd card with high read and write capabilities. The reason is that you are recording high quality video (lots of data), so the card has to be able to read and record that data quickly.
You should also purchase an sd card that holds at least 64gb of data, or about 3.5 hours of video.
Why Uber And Lyft Drivers Need A Dash Cam
You may be wondering if you really need a dash cam. So, I’m going to go over some of the reasons you might want a dash cam for Uber or Lyft. Many drivers I’ve talked to are unconvinced that a dash cam is necessary. However, if you drive Uber, Lyft or even a delivery service like Instacart or DoorDash, there are many situations where having a dash cam can save you time, money, and aggravation.
A Dash Cam For Uber And Lyft Provides Evidence If You Have An Accident While Driving Uber Or Lyft
Sometimes, even the best Uber or Lyft drivers can have an accident. One of the purposes of a dash cam is to show what happened in an accident so fault can be determined. It’s pretty common for people to lie about what happened in an accident and a dash cam is your best defense against such false claims.
You can give your dash cam footage to your insurance company as proof that your version of the accident is accurate and true. This can help you get your deductible back and prevent the major rate increase that comes with an at-fault accident. This reason alone is enough to warrant purchasing a dash cam for Uber or Lyft driving.
A Dash Cam Can Help Uber And Lyft Drivers Fight Phony Tickets
It’s well known that there’s an epidemic of crooked and corrupt police officers in the United States. Video evidence from a dash cam can help an Uber or Lyft driver fight back. Here’s video of an officer at LAX who tried to harass an Uber driver and wrote him a ticket for waiting too long, even though the drive had just pulled up. It’s astonishing.
If that video didn’t convince you to get a dash cam, here’s a video of some officers in Wilmington, NC who told an Uber driver he couldn’t record them because of “a new law”. Unfortunately for the cops, the driver was also a lawyer. He politely called bullshit on the officer and continued to record the entire encounter.
This video is from a cell phone, but it illustrates your rights. If you are pulled over by a police officer in the United States, it is your right to record every second of the encounter. Glik v. Cunniffe held that a private citizen has the right to record public officials in a public place. If an officer tells you different, or tells you that you must turn off the camera, they are lying or they don’t know the law. A police officer has no right to tell you to stop recording. Sgt. Kenneth Becker, one of the officers in the video, was demoted as a result of the video.
A Dash Cam Can Watch Your Car While It’s Parked
Lots of things can happen when you leave your car unattended. Your car can get scraped, or people can try and steal gas from your vehicle. In recent years, thieves have taken to stealing catalytic converters out of cars because they contain valuable rare earth metals. A few years ago, someone dinged my fender while it was parked somewhere. I didn’t notice it until a few hours later. If I had a dash cam at the time, I might have been able to figure out who the culprit was.
Most dash cams can be set to record even while you’re not in the vehicle. Certain models even have a motion sensor that will turn the dash cam on if something hits the vehicle. Having a dash cam can give you the peace of mind that your car is being watched even if you’re not there.
A Dash Cam Can Protect You Against Fraudsters
A popular scam, illustrated below in the clip from Better Call Saul, involves someone jumping onto to your car and then claiming that you hit them. Often, these fraudsters have a history of similar claims, and are just looking for a quick payout to go away. Having a dash cam means you’ll have evidence to show the police when they arrive.
A Dash Cam Offers Some (but not total) Protection Against False Passenger Claims
A dash cam can also help protect you against dishonest passengers. On occasion, a passenger who wants to get a free ride, may complain to Uber or Lyft that you were driving under the influence or that they smelled marijuana in your vehicle. Or they may complain that you harassed them in some way. Having a dash cam in the car can prove you did nothing wrong.
However, dash cams have limitations. The main limitation is recording time. Dash cams record the footage on an sd card. Even a very large sd card (128GB) can only hold about 7 hours of video. At this point, only Blackvue offers a cloud storage option, and it’s only really feasible to use on a wifi connection. So, once you run through all the recording time on your sd card, the dash cam will start recording over earlier footage. So, if a passenger makes a complaint the next day, you probably won’t have the footage. Nevertheless, having a dash cam in the car can often prevent a passenger from making false claims in the first place because they know they’re being recorded.
Features You Want In A Dash Cam For Uber And Lyft Driving
If you’re an Uber or Lyft driver, you’ll want some features that many dashcams don’t have. Most dash cams are designed to record the exterior (usually the view of the front) of the vehicle only.
The reason for this is that before Uber and Lyft existed, the main point of dash cams was to record what happened in an accident. Dash cams first became very popular in Russia because of the sheer number of insurance scams in the country a decade ago. This is the main reason why almost everyone in Russia has a dash cam.
However, if you’re a rideshare driver, you’re going to need your dash cam to do a bit more. Here’s a list of all the features that are essential to have on a dash cam for Uber and Lyft driving.
Exterior Video Recording
You want the dash cam to record exterior video so you have evidence if you have any kind of accident. The biggest reason you need this is to prevent insurance fraud. There are plenty of scam artists out there who fake accidents and injuries to get a quick payoff. Here’s a real life example of the Better Call Saul scam I mentioned earlier.
Also, in many accidents, people lie because they don’t want to admit fault and have their insurance rates shoot up. Thankfully, a dash cam recording can prove your side of the story is true.
Interior Video and High Quality Audio Recording
You will likely never need this feature. However, if you’re going to be transporting strangers in your car, it’s essential to protect yourself against false claims. Your dash cam should record the interior of your vehicle with high quality audio recording. If a passenger makes a false claim, it’s essential that you can clearly see and hear what was said. Many dashcams on the market have pretty good video, but terrible audio. This can be problematic because sometimes what a passenger says, as opposed to their actions, is the issue. If you don’t have good audio of the situation, you can’t prove anything. The four dash cams that made our list have top notch video and audio. The guy below was really happy he had a dash cam, because some passengers are just plain nuts. As a side note, this driver’s ability to stay cool and collected is top notch.
For dusk or night driving, your dash cam will need to have interior and exterior infrared recording capabilities. You need to be able to clearly see what is happening on the recording. If it’s night, and your dash cam doesn’t have infrared, neither the interior or exterior recordings will be very helpful.
Built In GPS
This is a rare and often overlooked dash cam feature but is a great rideshare dash cam option. If you have an accident, the GPS is how you will be able to prove your position and speed at the time of the accident. If the other party tries to claim you were speeding, the GPS data can refute their false claim.
You want a camera that will record continuously while you’re on the road. So, it’s important to make sure the dash cam has loop recording. This simply means that when the dash cam runs out of recording space, it will start recording the newest footage over the oldest footage.
Most dash cams come with an SD card that will record a few hours of footage. If you want to record more footage before your dash cam starts recording over the oldest footage, simply buy an extra large SD card.
Other Uber And Lyft Dash Cam Considerations
While you really should get a dash cam if you’re driving for Uber or Lyft, it’s not a magic shield that will protect you against everything that may happen on the road.
Even if you have a 128GB sd card, you can still only record about 7 hours of footage.
So, as I mentioned earlier, if a rider complains to Uber or Lyft the next day, the footage of the ride will most likely be gone. Likewise, if you get a ticket in the mail, you’re unlikely to have the footage from the day you got the ticket. However, if you have an accident, or an incident involving a passenger you will be very thankful that you have a dash cam.
Another situation you’ll want a dash cam for is if you have an abusive or belligerent passenger. When you report them to Uber or Lyft, you can also send them the footage. If you have a dash cam though, this will probably happen less. Passengers tend to behave better when they know they’re being recorded, which brings me to another thing you should remember.
Know Your State’s Laws Regarding Recording People
In most states, you can record video without obtaining consent. However, if you’re recording audio, in most states, you must notify the person you’re recording.
Also, there’s an ongoing argument between drivers as to how visible the dash cam should be. Some think a dash cam should be pretty inconspicuous, but not invisible (because of notification laws). The rationale is that some riders may not like that they’re being recorded. Other drivers think it doesn’t matter much. I’m in the latter camp. While some passengers may not like being recorded, most are fine with it. If a passenger asks about the dash cam, simply tell them it’s there to record everything for the safety and protection of both the passengers and the driver.
The Final Word On Dashcams For Uber And Lyft Drivers
If you drive Uber or Lyft, any of the dash cams on this list will serve you well. While the Blackvue DR750S is the top of the line model, if you drive a lot at night, the Blackvue DR650S might work better for you, at least until Blackvue releases the infrared lens for the 750. If you don’t require that absolute highest video quality, then the Vantrue or the Pruveeo will do the job just fine.
If you drive Lyft or Uber part or full time for a year, you will likely not need to consult your dash cam footage. However, if you do need your dash cam footage, it’s likely to be in a situation where that footage could save you thousands of dollars. So, be sure to protect yourself out there and get a dash cam.