Professional Backup Camera Installation vs. DIY Backup Cameras

May 28th, 2020

Backup camera, also called a rear-view or a reversing camera is one of the most important safety features of your car. Backup cameras are produced specifically to alleviate the rear blind spot and to avoid backup collision. Usually connected to the vehicle’s head unit display, backup cameras help drivers in backing up and allow them to see the area directly behind their vehicle.

Due to an alarming number of accidents involving the simple backup manoeuvre, all new cars sold in Canada must have a backup camera installed, which is why there are currently many backup cameras available in the market, including DIY solutions. Although DIY backup camera installation may seem like a convenient and easy fix, we’ve decided to point out some of the main differences between a professional backup camera installation and a do-it-yourself-product.

DIY backup camera installation vs. professional installation

As we mentioned earlier, there are a lot of products out there that you can install yourself, including solar powered wireless backup camera systems, various apps and other solutions. However, before you look into the best ones available on the market and install them yourself, here are some things you need to keep in mind:

Control and Moving Steering Lines

backup camera sciOne of the best features of a professionally installed backup camera is that the backup camera is connected the original vehicle display. As soon as you put your vehicle in reverse, the camera will automatically start and you can connect it to the steering wheel to have moving guiding lines (available for certain car models such as Audi, BMW and Mercedes Benz). With over-the-counter and DIY installation, you will not have the same benefit. Popular DIY solutions such as the Auto-Vox solar wireless backup camera kit are mounted on the vehicle’s dashboard and have to be turned on or off via remote control. The same goes for different gadgets on the market that allow rear view through a smartphone app. Every time you are backing up, you’d have to open the app on your smartphone, which is inconvenient and unsafe.

Resolution and image quality

Image quality differs greatly between a professionally installed backup camera and a DIY option, especially during night time. A high-quality backup camera offers a crystal clear image, even under poor lighting conditions, whereas image quality and resolution are often a big issue with popular DIY backup camera options. DIY cameras require more lighting to display an image, which poses a greater risk, especially in areas that are not well lit during nighttime. Check out the video below to see how different image quality is with professional cameras and DIY.


We already spoke about the difference between the image quality from a professional backup camera vs. a DIY one, but there is also a huge difference in angles (vertical and horizontal view). As you can see from the video above, the objects in close proximity to the vehicle usually look distorted which makes it impossible to get a realistic view. We have had numerous customers come to us to replace their over-the-counter backup camera because the view was distorted and the camera was impossible to use.


Popular DIY solutions are not as convenient in terms of durability and charging. Solar powered backup cameras such as the above-mentioned Auto Vox have to be exposed to the sun once a day, which can be inconvenient. A professionally installed backup camera doesn’t have to be charged at all.

Signal problems

Popular backup camera models often experience signal problems due to issues with Wi-Fi connectivity. Professionally installed backup cameras are connected to your vehicle’s wiring system, which means you don’t have to worry about signal problems.

Popular DIY cameras are not suitable for bigger vehicles

Many DIY options will have decent performance in smaller vehicles, but the initial range of popular DIY backup cameras is usually not suitable for larger vehicles such as RVs, trucks, pick-up trucks and so on. With a professionally installed backup camera, certain models allow you to modify the angle to get the best range like in the video below:


Some final notes

We hope these tips will guide you when choosing your backup camera system. Think about the image quality and guiding options as you read through the specs of the backup camera system you’re interested in. Look for reviews online to make sure you get the highest value for your money. After all, a backup camera should help you increase your safety and make reverse steering easier, not pose an additional risk and inconvenience. Check out our quick video presentation of backup camera and backup sensors installation in this Ford truck:

At Car Systems Installation, we offer a wide selection of cutting edge backup camera systems for any type of vehicle. We’re here to help you make driving better and more convenient, so give us a call at (416) 901-5812 to book your appointment or browse our wide selection of backup cameras here.

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