Best RV Backup Cameras: Enhance Your Field of Vision
Get a better view of blind spots when reversing your RV with these backup cameras
The Review Team
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PUBLISHED ON August 25, 2019
Driving an RV in reverse can be quite challenging. Your fender mirror may help you with the task, but it may also have a lot of blind spots. An RV backup camera system solves this issue by giving you a clear picture of the areas that your side mirror may miss. It also allows you to get a clear view of the low spots behind your RV to avoid obstacles. Here’s a look at some of the best RV backup camera systems that you should consider.
- Best OveralleRapta Reverse Camera with Split Screen MonitorSummarySummaryA digital rearview camera and reverse monitor kit with clear image quality and a large viewing angle.ProsProsWaterproof construction. Made of damage-resistant wires. Produces crystal clear images. Comes with complete accessories for easy installation and operation. Advanced night vision capabilities.ConsConsUnclear installation instructions. The monitor may have coloration and sharpness issues.
- Best ValueLeeKooLuu Backup Camera and MonitorSummarySummaryA high-performance, plug and play reverse camera with a monitor that can flip the image in any direction.ProsProsAffordable price point. Waterproof. Great infrared night vision. User-friendly plug-and-play installation. High-resolution monitor displays clear pictures. Includes a two-year warranty.ConsConsWeak mounting bracket. No anti-vibration or image stabilization feature. Not durable.
- Honorable MentionFurrion Vision S Backup Camera and MonitorSummarySummaryA wireless visual observation system that offers a wide viewing angle and displays clear images with audio.ProsProsSleek design. Waterproof construction. Offers a distortion-free viewing angle. Features motion detection and auto-wake functions. Includes parking-assist grid lines. The monitor can display up to four cameras.ConsConsHas a small monitor. Expensive and doesn’t include sufficient auxiliary features. Low brightness setting.
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Benefits of RV Backup Cameras
- Avoid obstacles. Backup cameras reduce the possibility of accidents that can occur while you are backing up the driveway or on a campsite. Many people leave chairs and other personal items unattended at campsites, and children may also run around near your RV. A backup camera is an easy solution to avoid unnecessary accidents.
- Enhanced safety. The camera is not only good at helping you avoid obstacles when you are on a driveway. It also gives you a clear view of the vehicles behind you when you are on the highway. You only have to wire the camera to a constant power source like your RV’s fuse box, and it will constantly display live images of the traffic conditions throughout your trip.
- Park comfortably in reverse. Reverse camera systems have parking grid lines that let you know if you are properly aligned in your parking space. You don't have to turn your body backward or ask a passenger to guide you into a parking spot.
- Law compliance. In 2014, the U.S. Department of Transportation decreed that every vehicle built as of 2014 should include a reverse camera for extra safety. If you have an older model, consider buying an aftermarket reverse camera to be compliant with the law and to avoid blind spots.
Types of RV Backup Cameras
These cameras have a cable that runs from the camera on the RV’s bumper all the way to the monitor on the trailer’s dashboard. It only requires a single power source to transmit images from both units. You may need to get some technical help when installing this type of camera, and you can increase the length of transmission by using a longer cord.
Digital wireless backup cameras use a wireless transmitter and receiver to transmit images from the RV backup camera to the monitor. The two devices communicate via electromagnetic transmission or wireless signals but have a shorter transmission distance in comparison to the wired alternatives. It’s easy to install the wireless camera as you only need to look for a mount or strong adhesive tape for the monitor and camera.
Furrion is made up of a US-based team of engineers, designers, and technologists. The company has over 10 years of experience in supplying high-quality consumer electronics and appliances for specialty vehicles. Its unique engineering capabilities led to its collaboration with several Fortune 500 companies. One of its best-rated backup cameras for campers is the Furrion Vision S Backup Camera and Monitor.
eRapta is a manufacturing company that’s dedicated to the research of automotive safety and designs products aimed at reducing accidents on the road. The company has warehouses in the United States, Canada, and China. It also has over eight years of experience in manufacturing diversified road safety products, including car reversing camera kits, wireless rearview cameras, and car rearview cameras. Some of its best RV backup camera systems are the eRapta Reverse Camera with Split Screen Monitor and the eRapta Backup Camera and Monitor.
RV Backup Camera Pricing
- Under $100: Backup camera systems within this price range are usually quite easy to install. You will find wired and wireless types that can fit in almost all vehicles. However, you may have to buy a mounting bracket with some models. Some models have a wide viewing angle of over 120 degrees, and you should expect some convenience features such as motion sensor activation with the cheaper options.
- $100 to $200: The units within this price range are mostly high-quality wireless camera systems with sleek designs and high-resolution images. Expect to find products with a wide viewing angle and a plethora of convenience features, including parking guidelines, infrared night vision capability, waterproof cameras, and a high transmission range.
- Over $200: Price is not a determining factor for the size of the screen you may receive with a unit. Some high-end models have less than five-inch screens but boast the best image quality and can stabilize vibrating images. They also work well at high speeds and have almost zero interference for accurate usage.
The viewing angle or field of view is determined by the quality of the camera and the size of your RV. You need a unit with a wide field of view that covers the entire area behind your RV and gives a perfect view of the blind spots on the side. Any unit with a viewing angle of more than 90 degrees will be ideal for most RVs.
The best cameras are resistant to extreme weather conditions such as heavy downpour, extreme heat, and snow. Waterproof cameras typically carry an IPx7 rating, showing that the unit can withstand being immersed 3.5 feet in water for 30 minutes. A unit with an IPx6 rating can withstand being hit by powerful jets of water from side to side. Such units are also freeze-proof even under temperatures of 59-degrees Fahrenheit.
Backup cameras use either a digital or analog signal to transmit and receive images. However, the signals are susceptible to interference from Bluetooth devices, Wi-Fi signals, wireless radios, and phones, among other devices. In the worst-case scenario, you may get images of backup cameras from other vehicles transmitted to your monitor. The best bet is to get a digital camera since it is less susceptible to interference.
- Night Vision: This feature mostly applies to wireless backup cameras. A unit with night vision typically means that it will produce high-quality images on the monitor at night. The cameras are fitted with infrared LEDs that illuminate objects in the dark. Wired cameras rely on your tailgate lights to display objects at night.
- Camera Quality: You should choose a camera with great image quality and customizable options that let you choose between colored and black and white images. Another important feature is mirror image capability that helps you reverse easily without using the side mirror of your RV.
- Monitor Quality: Most backup cameras are sold together with their monitors. The best monitor should display clear image quality and have at least a five-inch screen. Choose units with over 400 horizontal pixels. It’s also convenient if the monitor can double as an entertainment system.
Best RV Backup Camera Reviews & Recommendations 2019
Best Overall: eRapta Reverse Camera with Split Screen Monitor
The eRapta rearview visual-assist kit includes wireless remote control, installation cables, two side cameras, two rear cameras, and a seven-inch TFT LCD monitor with high-definition images of 720 pixels. The unit has a wealth of user-friendly features, including 18 infrared lights for the best night vision. In addition, the camera is made of weatherproof construction that resists damaged by water, snow, and hot temperatures.
The monitor has split-screen capabilities for extra safety and can display what’s behind and at the side of the trailer at the same time. You will have a better view of blind spots and an easier time when reversing or parking. The unit can be powered by a 12- to 24-volt power source to accommodate a wide range of vehicles, including RVs, 5th wheels, trucks, and commuter buses.
A major drawback of the product is that it’s difficult to install. It would have been helpful if this eRapta kit came with clear wiring diagrams to help with installation. Also, you may receive a monitor with poor color quality and sharpness. For example, it may be difficult to tell if an object is black or grey if you get a defective monitor.
Best Value: LeeKooLuu Backup Camera and Monitor
The LeeKooLuu wireless backup camera system features a 4.3-inch LCD monitor that offers an impressive image resolution of 960 by 576 pixels and a rearview camera with a wide viewing angle of 150 degrees. The monitor is capable of monitoring V1 and V2 video inputs for convenience when you want to switch from safety to entertainment. The camera is heavily guarded against water damage and has an IP69 waterproof grade. It features seven LED lights with an on/off adapter that will help you maneuver through the dark and in heavy-fog conditions.
A unique feature of this rearview camera is that it has an intelligent button that can switch the viewing mirror from rear view to front view. The camera can also flip the image in any direction that you desire to give you a better view of the image. It also features backup guidelines that give you guidance according to the height and width of your vehicle. It’s a plug-and-play unit, which can be installed on the 12-volt fuse box or the cigarette lighter. It can be used on travel trailers, trucks, buses, vans, and a variety of other vehicles.
What you may not like about this product is that it comes with a weak mounting bracket for the monitor that may not hold it steadily in an upright position. Also, there’s no anti-vibration or stabilization function on the monitor that allows you to steady moving pictures for a clearer view. It’s a cheaper product and may not be as waterproof or last as long as high-end reverse cameras.
Honorable Mention: Furrion Vision S Backup Camera and Monitor
Furrion is a 2.4-gigahertz digital wireless backup camera that operates at a range of 42 feet inside large vehicles and 492 feet in open space. It offers optional parking assistance with distance and rear assist grid lines. The feature can be turned on or off when necessary. The camera is rated at IP65 for waterproof capabilities and also resists damage by outside elements exposure. It offers a 120-degree-wide viewing angle inclusive of automatic motion detection and infrared night vision.
The monitor displays clear images at a resolution of 720 by 480 pixels. The screen has an anti-glare feature that adjusts the screen brightness based on the ambient conditions. It also runs on digital wireless technology and resists interferences coming from the environment. The package comes with mounts for the monitor, but it’s lightweight enough to be mounted on the windshield with adhesive tape. The Furrion camera can be used on RVs, commuter buses, tractors, semi-trailers, motorhomes, shuttle buses, and trucks.
However, the unit has some drawbacks, including its high price tag. For such an expensive unit, you would expect more accessories and a larger screen display, but that’s not the case with this model. Moreover, you may notice that its brightness level is lacking, especially when it’s sunny outside. Even it’s maximum brightness level may not be too helpful in such instances.
- Don't substitute the side mirror with the backup camera. Look over your shoulder and use the side mirror from time to time to ensure that you are getting the correct image from the camera.
- Since the camera will be exposed to outdoor elements such as dirt, grime, dust, and snow, ensure to constantly clean the lens to get a clear image. You can wet a dry cloth with an alcohol-based solution to clean the camera lens.
- Learning how to use the reverse camera is a gradual process that takes time. Practice using the device in your driveway before you take your RV on the road. Pair the unit with a blind spot mirror, and be sure to get a high-end reverse camera if you have never used one before for enhanced clarity and safety.
Q: Can I hook up the reverse camera to a monitor that's already built into my RV?
A: This is possible with a plug-and-play monitor that supports the video system coming in from the camera. With other incompatible models, you may have to tap into your vehicle’s circuitry system to connect both units. However, that's not a guarantee that both units will work flawlessly together as the video screen may "reject" the camera's program.
Q: Do backup cameras reduce accidents?
A: Yes, they do. They reduce injuries to children and pets caused by vehicles backing up, and they help you maintain a safe distance from the vehicles behind you in traffic. They also save you money in repairs for a damaged bumper.
Q: What do I do when my screen doesn't display images from the camera?
A: You can start by troubleshooting the wiring. Ensure that the monitor is well connected to the camera. If that doesn't work, the issue could be with a blown fuse on the camera. Refer to your manual to locate the fuse and see the steps on how to troubleshoot the problem.
We chose the eRapta Reverse Camera with Split Screen Monitor as our top pick due to its high camera quality and its dedicated monitor that displays clear images.
If you are tight for cash but need a quick and easy solution to reverse parking, you could go for the LeeKooLuu Backup Camera and Monitor.