Since my last review, of the Garmin 67LM, there have been some follow-up queries. A couple of our readers asked whether the Garmin BC30 wireless backup camera was compatible with their devices. They also wanted to know if it was suitable for different types of vehicles.
For those of you who aren’t aware of what it is, the BC30 is a wireless camera that pairs with your Garmin Nuvi sat nav. It provides the driver with a view of what’s behind them. As you reverse (and depending upon your configuration), you get to see the rear via the screen of your sat nav. It’s a pretty neat idea to utilize the sat nav as a camera screen, but is it an easy add-on to your system?
As you can imagine, moving around with a large trailer can be a little precarious at times. Is the BC30 wireless camera suitable for a trailer? Is it something I can install myself? What devices is this compatible with?Anthony Murphy
Well, Anthony, the short answer is yes, it is suitable for use with a trailer. It is also possible to install the camera yourself if you have a few tools and some patience!
Garmin does, however, recommend that these cameras are professionally installed as they will require hooking up to a power source. That being said they have rather usefully released a number of step by step videos showing how to install the Garmin BC 30 wireless backup camera yourself.
Before we get to the required steps for installation let’s look at which devices this camera is compatible with.
Is the Garmin BC30 Camera compatible with my sat nav?
Below is a list of compatible devices as provided by Garmin. If you don’t recognize some devices listed here, it’s probably because they are designed for truckers and larger vehicle drivers.
Garmin should be commended for providing device compatibility with both the entry-level and premium sat nav ranges. Many manufacturers would have left this accessory as an add – on to their flagship premium models only.
- Camper/RV 660
- dezl 570, dezl 770, dezlCam
- nuvi 55/56/57/58
- nuvi 60 series
- nuvi 2407/2408
- nuvi 2507/2508/2509
- nuvi 2609
- nuvi 2709
This camera should remove those annoying and sometimes dangerous blindspots. Depending upon how you have installed the device you will see behind you when you reverse or you may be able to ‘switch’ on the camera manually at any time. To be able to change the sat-nav view from navigational mode to the rear camera you will need to be hooked up to a permanent power source not just your rear lights.
Remember, if your vehicle already has rear cameras installed then save yourself some money as you will most certainly not require this device!
Can I install the BC30 myself?
It most certainly is possible to install the BC30 yourself. Garmin has been rather kind to the budding DIY fans. They have released a series of step by step videos explaining how you go about installing the camera system.
What tools will I need?
From watching the video above it’s thankfully obvious that you won’t need too many tools. In fact, most of the tools will probably be found in your garage or the garden shed. Once again, Garmin stresses that you should seriously consider getting the professionals in for the job – probably because you may need to drill into the body of the car. In the video above they mount the camera onto the number plate which I’m presuming is an easier option.
If you decide to go ahead and install the backup camera yourself, you are going to need the following:
- Drill & drill bits
- No2 Philips screwdriver
- Wire connectors
- Tubing covers (waterproof)
- Multimeter (possibly required to check the circuit)
- Cable Ties
So once you have searched the shed and got all the tools required for the job, what’s next? You must now decide how and where you are going to place the camera. How are you going to wire up the system? Are you going to hook the device up to the far reversing light? Or are you going to use a permanent power supply from elsewhere?
If you install the camera to the reversing light, then the camera will only turn on when you reverse. As this is a transmitter, there will be a slight delay of a couple of seconds, before the camera switches onto the screen. If, on the other hand, you connect to a permanent power source, then you will have the ability to turn on the camera anytime via the sat-nav itself.
Before starting the project, it makes sense to put some proper thought into the installation process. The last thing you need is to drill into the body of the vehicle and find the camera is not in the best position! Crikey, I shudder to think of the consequences if I did that on the wife’s car!
At this stage, you should have decided on the location that you will be installing the camera. You should also have decided upon which power source you are going to hook into. How will the cables be outed from one end of the vehicle to the other? Try and find the best route and easiest route as mentioned in the videos.
It’s worth remembering that you could potentially attach some additional cameras to the system in the future. If you think that you might do so, then make sure that the cabling is easily accessible to the potential future camera locations. Once you have made these decisions, you are ready to begin the actual installation.
Continue Reading – Part 2 of The Installation
This seems like a pretty decent back up camera. I’m guessing the navigation is just as good too?
Have you personally installed one of these? It seems pretty simple… I’m more curious how well it stays attached to your vehicle.
Thanks for taking the time to put this review together! It’s very informative and easy to read!
Yes the quality of the camera is pretty decent and the picture is rather good. I have put this onto my brother in law’s flatbed trailer. At the rear of the trailer there is a lip that protrudes above the number plate and we installed the camera there. The trailer is just over 4.5 metres in length and a little under 2 metres in width. When he has a load on the back he’s found the BC30 a great help as it helps with those blindspots when reversing.
Give me a shout if you need any further details and I’ll be delighted to help out.
A thoroughly in depth article on the Garmin-BC 30 installation proceedures. Quite a complicated installation I would have thought, I certainly would not like to try without someone over my shoulder like your self. You really do know your stuff about this camera. Great dideo tutorials and a nice easy to read website.
Well done with your article
Many thanks for your kind comments – it’s much appreciated.
I think that most of these installations are daunting at the outset. However, as long as you take your time and follow the instructions it should work out ok!
Ever since I rode in my cousins’ car I was envious of anyone with a monitor for the back of the car. I had GPS on my phone which was great but I longed for something I could use to see in back. I planned on buying a Garmin GPS for the car so now I will be able to get everything I want.
This is a cool addition to your GPS and you also get a quality weekend project to do 😉
When a company takes the time to make their camera compatible with as many devices as they have you know there must be some real value to it.
My previous camera only worked with one nav controller as it was hard wired. This wireless camera would be so much better and particularly when it can also be hooked up to a trailer.
The BC 30 wireless backup camera sounds like what I need for my purposes.
It’s fantastic that this camera is compatible with a range of devices. It’s also good to see that it will also work with Garmin’s new Drive GPS range. This means that the camera will be supported longer into the future.
The reason I have this camera is because of the trailer. With it being wireless it makes it easy to more or less put it anywhere!
Let me know how you find the camera works for you.
Hi I just had halfords install a sat navigation and bc-30 reversing camera but when guy went to try it all out reversing camera is not working . What can he have done wrong?
Sorry to hear your having some trouble with the camera. As I can’t see how the camera was installed we’ll have to presume that it was installed correctly – your can try a couple of things before you have to head back to the store.
The issue may be that the camera and your sat nav haven’t been paired correctly. In order to check this head to the menu on the screen your Garmin. You should see the settings option (from memory it’s on the bottom right of the screen and has a spanner symbol) and then choose backup camera.
Within this menu do you see the camera listed? If so you will need to select it and ‘unpair’ it. If on the other hand it’s not listed then you should ‘add new camera’. From there you’ll need to follow the instructions on the screen – it’ll tell you when to put the car into reverse. Do make sure that you have the handbrake and/or the brakes engaged at the same time! Once you have the camera and the GPS paired you should be able to rename the camera. I always tend to call her something other than ‘Camera 1’ – I think our camera on the trailer is called ‘Bugs Bunny’!.
You may need to take the above steps a couple of times if the camera doesn’t work as it should. Fingers crossed it does work and it’ll save you a trip to the workshop again.
Please let me know how you get on,
Well, I install all of my electronic devices to my vehicles myself usually with no problems and have a basic understanding of how things go, but with this wireless camera it worked fine for about 3 months, now (occasionally), it’ll freeze the screen and if I take my vehicle out of reverse it still shows the same picture. I have to unplug the power supply to the nav and then plug it back in and get it started up again then it’ll work. But only for a minute or so. Then if I place the transmission into reverse again several minutes later, the screen doesn’t respond to the camera. And sometimes I get a reading on the monitor that says I need to connect the right power supply cord but I’m using the right power supply cord could it be a bad cord?
That could be the case however it’s too difficult to say without looking at it. Hopefully you have someone that can help you out with this.
All the best
Hi Dylan, have a BC30 connected to a Nuvi 2597, watch your video about installation and thought I can do that.
The problem I am having is the picture keeps freezing sometimes after a couple if seconds sometimes after 20 seconds but never stay permanently on.
I have moved the transmitter into the cab just behind the drivers seat.
Have you git any advice.
Firstly, apologies for the delay in replying to you it’s been a hectic few days over here!
Please remember that your camera will only come on when you are reversing, it won’t stay on permanently. Let’s try and solve the problem your having by repairing the devices.
Head over to the menu of your device and unpair it with your camera. To do this go into the settings menu – then choose backup camera. You should now see the camera listed as an option – choose this and select the camera and then unpair. This will remove it from your device.
Once you have removed the camera you will now need to reinstall the device. Apply power to the camera by putting your car into reverse (make sure that you have the brakes applied and there is no one stood behind you). This should enable your Garmin to pick up the camera on the rear – you’ll be prompted to pair the two devices, click yes and you should be good to go.
Hopefully this will solve it! Please let me know how you get on,
I have been in electronic since the old tube type days (no not a You Tube) and for about 20 years I installed 2way radios in everything, cars, trucks, motorcycles and big ships. So I have an idea about installations. Lately I’ve done more than a few of these wireless backup cameras, and found some of the receiver have a problem. All these units run on 2.4 GHz and these days that frequency band is over loaded. What can happen is you get some displays that flash on and off. What is happening is the receiver picks up a 2.4 signal and turns on the monitor, and within a second sees it is not the correct signal and shuts off.
When I find this is a problem I have to run a wire from the backup circuit to the monitor and it cures the false signal. The other thing it prevents is sitting in a parking lot and getting other backup cameras video.
Hi Dylan, I bought a Garmin DriveSmart 61 and it’s been great. I have a 2012 BMW X1 and it doesn’t have a back-up camera. I would love the install the BC30 on my vehicle to take advantage of a back-up camera view but the instructions are a little too complicated for me to do myself. I live in Toronto, Canada and would gladly pay for professional installation if you know of any installers that may be in my area. Any suggestions?
Many thanks for dropping by!
Unfortunately I don’t know of any professional installers in the Toronto area – I live quite a distance away! I shall however do a search and let you know if I find someone that can help you.
All the best