Car backup cameras are nifty little gadgets that make the lives of drivers a whole lot easier. They are quite small, about the size of a button, and serve to minimize the rear blind spot and thus provide aid in backing up by transferring the image behind the car to a monitor in the dashboard or rear-view mirror. The usual wide-angle or fisheye lens sported by the camera enables the driver to see the entire space behind their car—from one end to the other—while in reverse.
Not only can backup cameras make backing up a lot safer and minimize the amount of related accidents, they can also assist with things like squeezing into tight parking spots backwards or hitching up a trailer. Since they’re so useful, you may wonder why all cars don’t have them yet. Well, they just might become ubiquitous very soon! To find out where they came from and how to provide top maintenance during your auto detailing career, keep reading!
What Began as One Backup Camera Became a Popular Innovative Movement
In actual production, the first backup camera system was used in 1991 by the Toyota Soarer Limited in Japan, using a mounted CCD camera and transferring the image to an EMV screen. Nissan was the next to innovate in this area in its 2000 Infiniti. Since then, the backup camera has only soared in popularity, with about half of 2012 model automobiles being equipped with one.
Now some cameras have even gotten so sophisticated so as to enhance night vision with the aid of infrared lights. A number of carmakers like Nissan and Ford are really taking the technology to new levels with the introduction of all-around-view monitoring systems using as many as four cameras. Others like Tesla and Volkswagen are even experimenting with using cameras instead of side-view mirrors!
Exciting new technology is coming, but for now, to promote backup collision safety, both Canadian and American transportation organizations have issued mandates requiring for all cars built starting May 2018 to include backup cameras. That means we’re going to be seeing a lot more of them!
Gentle Camera Care Is What You Need to Know as a Student at Auto Detailing School
The matter that backup cameras are soon to be omnipresent makes the question of how to clean them even more relevant. Over time, these nifty features typically get blocked with dirt and other debris, preventing drivers from seeing more than a dark screen when their camera activates. Regular cleaning is therefore necessary to maintain optimal functionality, and there is a special way to do it, too.
When doing a professional automotive detailing job and cleaning a backup camera, be sure to be very gentle. The camera is a delicate piece of technology that needs to be approached with care. Only a clean, soft cloth should be used for wiping the collected grime off the lens in order to avoid creating any scratches. Similarly, only non-abrasive cleaners or water are suggested for dampening the cloth.
Sometimes Cameras Need a Bit of Hydrophobic Help to Stay Clean
Even thought cleaning a backup camera can be done at home, your clients probably won’t want to be doing this on a daily basis, which could end up being the case in bad weather conditions. Backup cameras are unfortunately not fans of wintry weather and all the snow and slush that comes with it. Within just a few blocks of driving in such conditions, muck can splash onto the camera which will then only transfer a muddled image.
Once you begin your auto detailing career, you can help your clients prevent this problem by spraying a bit of hydrophobic fluid on the camera lens. This will help moisture roll off so the backup camera can remain cleaner longer—even in less-than-ideal conditions. Your clients will surely appreciate not having to clean their cameras every time they need to back up in the winter!
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