Will installing a rear-view camera on my car affect my insurance rates? A few years ago the news media began reporting the fact that the federal government was considering mandating rear-view cameras on every new vehicle sold the United States.
As of May 1, 2018, rearview cameras are required in all new vehicles according to the NHTSA. The plan is to use these cameras in addition to other features such as Automatic Emergency Braking as standard vehicle features to ensure vehicles are safer by 2022.
Rearview cameras are thought to prevent accidents such as backing up over children or elderly.
These cameras can help increase a driver’s range of vision, but they are not replacements for physically turning around and checking your surroundings also.
Right now, rearview cameras do not qualify most drivers for discounts, but they are good safety tools nonetheless. Use our free comparison tool to make sure you have all the available discounts on your policy!
What is a car insurance company’s view of the rear-view camera?
Car insurance companies are always looking for ways to make cars and driving safer. It’s just common sense.
The safer our driving activities become, the less money the insurance companies pay out in claims every year, and the better off we all are.
Therefore, it is standard procedure for insurance companies to reward safety features by providing premium discounts for those cars that have them. Conversely, cars with no safety features pay higher rates.
As far as the rear-view camera is concerned, some studies suggest such devices make driving safer. They also tend to reduce the number of bumper damage accidents, especially on larger vehicles and motorhomes.
But since such accidents usually generate little or no damage, the financial implications for insurance companies are minimal. At this point, many are hesitant to offer significant premium reductions merely because a car has a backup camera.
Insurers will most likely wait to offer discounts for rearview cameras until there is significant proof that these backup cameras greatly reduce claims from accidents.
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Are there any safety devices that really do make a difference for car insurance rates?
There are certainly some safety features that have been statistically proven to reduce auto accidents or the severity of damage realized.
These features will most likely help you save money on your insurance premiums:
- ABS – In areas with severe winters, one of the leading causes of accidents during the winter months is skidding or sliding on ice and snow. Such skidding and sliding often occur when drivers apply the brakes too hard in slippery conditions. The ABS braking system helps to reduce the risk of such accidents by not allowing a car’s brakes to lock up, regardless of how hard the driver hits the pedal.
- Traction Control – Traction control helps to reduce the risk of sliding on black ice and running your car off the road. Like the ABS braking system, cars with traction control systems can receive significant discounts on insurance rates.
- Daytime Running Lights
Are there any negatives to the rear-view camera as far as car insurance is concerned?
Believe it or not, there are two legitimate concerns regarding the rear-view camera from the insurance perspective:
- These cameras might become the target of enterprising thieves
- U.S. car manufacturers are already saying that adding backup cameras will add somewhere around $150 to the cost of a car
Both of these facts mean that the value of the car being insured will increase as the mandated cameras are installed on new cars. If we apply this to our knowledge of how car insurance premiums are calculated, we understand that as the value of a car increases so do insurance costs.
Every time we add a new device that raises the value we also add to the cost of replacing or repairing that vehicle in the event of a crash.
Adding a rearview camera — and the GPS system required to use it properly — means higher prices for insurance policies, especially for those who wish to include full comprehensive coverage on their vehicles.
Rear-view cameras installed in all new vehicles will become a reality, and hopefully, this will, in fact, reduce accidents and save lives. However, it is pretty clear that you and I will probably not realize any cost savings by having one of these cameras installed in our vehicles.
With or without a rearview camera, you can compare FREE online car insurance quotes by entering your ZIP code now!