We’re getting pretty used to seeing cars these days with dash cams installed. It’s almost the norm and is certainly a great way to protect what are probably your most expensive purchase and your most valuable cargo: your car and your family. Why is dash cam footage so important though? Do you know how to view dash cam footage? Don’t worry if you don’t, as we are about to delve into this topic and provide you with some invaluable top tips. Even if you’ve not yet taken the plunge and invested in a dash cam, when you realize how useful the footage could be and how easy it is to record and review it, then you might just be ready to take the purchasing plunge.
Dash cam footage is particularly useful when it comes to accidents and any subsequent insurance claims. Having concrete video evidence of the actual incident, better still time and date stamped video evidence, will really work in your favor and most certainly provide you with that extra peace of mind when you are out on the roads. Let’s face it, not everyone might drive as carefully or conscientiously as you, and unfortunately, it’s a fact of life that accidents do happen. You might not even be in the car at the time, it could just be parked. But not to worry, if you have a good dash cam it will still record useful video whether you are in the car or not.
Many of the industry’s leading dash cam brands fit their recorders with motion sensors, so even the slightest knock will kick your dash cam into recording mode. Now that really is a handy feature and definitely one that will reassure you, especially if you’ve had to leave your vehicle parked in a precarious position. It’s also helpful to know that many of the leading insurance companies will accept your dash cam footage as part of any claim, so it really could end up being more than worth it to invest in a dash cam.
Let’s not assume that you’ve been in anything quite so dramatic as an accident, but that you do want to review what’s been going on. So you are going to need to know how to view dash cam footage and what recommended steps to follow. Here’s a quick explanation that we hope you will find useful and informative.
Your dash cam will record videos and images that you are quite likely to want to retrieve. Either because you need to view it or because you want to see what footage you can remove and delete to free up more space. These easy to follow basic instructions should apply to all makes and manufactured brands of dash cam, but as always, it’s best to follow any specific owner manual instructions that come with your particular model.
You are going to need a computer or a laptop to view your images. While it is possible to reply and review them on the dash cam screen itself, we’re assuming that you want a bigger picture view of what’s been going on. So here are some very generic steps that we recommend you follow.
This will sound simple, but you need to remove the memory card. Depending on what model you have the card will be different, and your memory card may not even have been included with your purchase. Obviously, before you perform any operation like this, you do need to be parked and have the dash cam itself switched off.
This next step really only applies to Micro SD cards, so you can ignore it if your dash cam doesn’t have one. You will need to very carefully insert your Micro SD card into the SD adapter, which should have been supplied with your SD card. It is possible that with some memory card readers you can bypass this stage, as they may be able to read the card directly without the need for an adapter.
For this next step, you are going to actually copy the content from your dash cam to your PC so that you can view it later. For this, you will need to use a memory card reader. Many computers these days have them built in, but if yours doesn’t then you just need to invest in a basic USB memory card reader. Make sure you insert the card into the correct slot in the event that it has a few slots to choose from.
You are now ready to start copying your video files over to your PC. As you do, an “Auto-Play” window should pop up and provide you with an option to open the new detected folder in order to view your video files. You need to locate the file that contains your videos which will have a name along the lines of “DCIM” or perhaps “DSC” with various numbers beside it. If your dash cam came with its own software video player, you should see that icon displayed instead, and all you need to do is double-click on the icon to view your video.
If you don’t have a software video player, then what you should see instead is a whole list of your files. You will need to select a file (or all of them) with your mouse and drag them onto your desktop to somewhere convenient for viewing later. We’d recommend you just pop these into your video folder, or you might want to make up a new folder on your desktop especially for your dash cam videos.
Now all you should need to do is just go to that video folder and double-click on any of your recorded videos so that you can view them. Of course, you do need to have had a video player installed, but most computers do come with one of those as standard these days. If not, it’s quick and easy to download one online.
You now know the correct steps to follow and how to view dash cam footage. So hopefully, the videos won’t reveal any nasty surprises!