Some car insurance companies offer discounts to drivers who have a dash cam installed in their car. Dash cams are also useful when making a car insurance claim, as they offer proof of who was at fault.
But are they worth the investment? Let's take a look.
Can I get a dash cam car insurance discount?
Yes, you can get lower car insurance costs from certain providers if you have a dash cam installed.
When you compare car insurance quotes with us, we'll ask you 'Do you have a dashcam fitted to your car? (optional)'
Selecting 'Yes' means that any insurance companies that offer discounts for dash cams can factor this in when giving you an insurance price.
Most insurance companies insist that you need to be able to provide any dash cam footage if you make a car insurance claim.
If you've said you have a dashcam and you don't do this, they might ask you to pay back any discount you've had. If the insurer believes you've deliberately misled them to get cheaper car insurance, they could invalidate your policy.
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How does having a dash cam lower insurance?
Having a dash cam helps lower your insurance costs in 3 ways:
- It says to your insurer that you're willing to have your driving scrutinised
- Dash cams provide evidence that can prove who's liable for an accident
- Dash cams with cloud storage improve car security by helping police to recover your car if it's stolen
Since dash cams provide a 'definitive' version of events, any footage you submit shows show insurance companies how well you drive. This is similar in a way to how black box telematics policies monitor your driving and give discounts for good driving.
If the footage is in your favour, it could help:
- Keep your no-claims bonus intact
- Settle claims quickly and fairly
- Reduce the risk of fraud - for example 'crash for cash' or false whiplash claims
And if you buy a dash cam that uploads footage to the cloud, you can use it as a kind of car tracker if yours is stolen. You can submit footage to the police of the theft and the last known whereabouts of your car, helping them recover it faster.
Can I get an insurance-approved dash cam?
There's no universal list of insurance-approved dash cams, as each insurance company has its own criteria for what's an acceptable dash cam.
Adrian Flux, which offers a car insurance discount of up to 15% with a dash cam, has published its list of approved dash cam models. These include:
For more information see the full list of approved dash cams.
In general, insurance companies want dash cams that can provide high-quality video. The better the video quality, the more likely it is that the footage is useful when investigating a claim.
So when you're looking at buying a dash cam, narrow your search for models that offer at least 1080p resolution. You can get dash cams with up to 4K resolution, but these are more expensive.
If you're thinking of buying a dash cam specifically to get a discount on your car insurance, contact your insurer first. They'll be able to tell you if they require a specific model or have any specific requirements.
Do I need to have my dash cam fitted professionally to get an insurance discount?
No, you shouldn't need to get your dash cam fitted professionally to get a car insurance discount.
Professional dash cam fitting connects the dash cam directly to your car, rather than plugging it in via USB.
But there are benefits to having your dash cam installed by a professional, including:
- The dash cam is always on when the car is on. Since the dash cam is hardwired to the car, you don't have to worry about it not working.
- You can enable parking mode. If your dash cam has a parking mode, hardwiring it to the car lets you activate this feature.
- Fewer wires. The cables are neatly stored so you don't have dangling wires, which could be a distraction or a hazard.
Professional dash cam fitting costs between £50-70 at places like Halfords.
Can I use dash cam footage to support my insurance claim?
Yes, you can. If you're involved in an accident and you have a dash cam installed, you should submit the footage to your car insurance company. In fact, many insurers insist that you do.
When you make a car insurance claim, tell your insurance company that you have dash cam footage to submit. They'll tell you how to send them the footage.
Having this footage could provide clear details of what happened during the accident, including:
- Weather and road conditions
- The make, model, colour, condition and reg plate of the other vehicle
- Whether there were any other passengers or witnesses at the scene
- The speed and location of the vehicles involved
In some cases, dash cam footage can make the difference between a successful and unsuccessful claim.
Mark* supplied dashcam footage as a witness to a 'hit and run' collision between a delivery van and a neighbour's parked car. The footage identified the vehicle that caused the damage as it clearly showed its reg plate.
Without this footage the neighbour would have had no idea who caused the damage and would have had to claim on their own insurance policy.
How much do dash cams cost?
A dash cam is likely to cost between £40 and £500, depending on what features it has. When looking at dash cams, consider which features are most likely to help you, as this is likely to change your costs:
- Picture quality - the higher the resolution, the clearer the footage for your insurance company
- Number of cameras - additional rear and cabin cameras cost more but give you more coverage
- Storage - footage that uploads to the cloud is more secure than an SD card, but costs more
- Parking mode - this protects your car even when you're not using it, but usually needs to be hardwired to your car
Where can I send dash cam footage to the police?
If you’ve got footage of a traffic accident or incident, you can submit your footage to the National Dash Cam Safety Portal.
The portal makes it easy for you to submit footage of dangerous drivers to your local police forces. Select the relevant police force and you'll either:
- Go to that police force's Operation SNAP page
- Fill in a form from Nextbase that they submit to the police on your behalf
Does my car insurance cover dash cams?
Yes, if you have a comprehensive car insurance policy, your dash cam should be covered if it's stolen or damaged in an accident.
This is usually called 'personal belongings' cover. How much you'll be able to claim depends on the policy, so check with your insurance company.
If your policy offers this, expect personal belongings cover to be in the range of £200-£500. But this is to cover all items in the car that were stolen, not just the dash cam.
*Name has been changed