How Expensive Is It To Install Backup Camera on a Car?

Backup cameras or rear-view cameras are installed in cars to assist the driver with parking and to reverse. It gives the driver a clear view of what is behind the vehicle so you can avoid crashing into anything. Many people consider installing a backup camera on their car, but how expensive is it to install?

It’s estimated that installation will cost between $100 and $200; however, it depends on whether you install it yourself or ask a professional to do it for you. Complex setups which include several cameras will cost you more; therefore, you can expect to spend around $100 to $1000 for installation.

Let’s look at the types of backup camera displays and why it is so expensive to install a backup camera. I have also outlined instructions on how to install it.

How Expensive Is It To Install Backup Camera On A Car?

The first backup camera was invented way back in 1956, and since then, car owners have invested in rear-view cameras to enhance safety and provide better visibility behind your car. There is not a definite answer as to how expensive it is to install a backup camera. The total cost depends on the price of the camera and the fee for installation and labor.


dashboard of mercedes

1.    Cost Of Camera

The camera’s price ranges from $20 (the lowest price) to $700 (the highest price); however, the cost is determined by the type of camera and the camera brand. Cheaper cameras do not have the same quality features as high-end cameras.

The inexpensive cameras come without a monitor and are usually single cameras. The high-cost ones come with upscale monitors, several camera systems, and advanced attributes like recording functionality and a GPS tracker.

Durability is another feature worth mentioning. Before purchasing a backup camera, read customer reviews, compare features, and gather different opinions from experienced salespeople.

2.    Cost Of Installation

Depending on how complicated the system setup is, the total estimate of the installation cost is between $100 to $1000 (it might be less). More complex arrangements include the installation of several cameras.

How To Install A Backup Camera On A Car

Once you have established how much the cost and installation of a backup camera will be, you need to learn how to install it on your car.

backup camera on dash

If you prefer installing the rear-view camera on your own, then the steps outlined below will help you complete the task smoothly and effectively. Let see what tools you need to gather to get the installation process on track:

1.    Buy The Backup Camera For Your Car

Purchase a mountable backup camera designed for your car. A backup camera specifically designed for your vehicle ensures trouble-free installation and is safer than the typical rear-view cameras.

When searching for a suitable camera, purchase one that mounts onto the license plate.

2.    Buy An External Backup Monitor For Your Car

External backup monitors feature a small video screen that can be attached to your car’s windshield. They are easier to use than internal monitors and safer when you need to park or backup into your garage, but if you do not want to cover or replace your rear-view mirror, then an external backup camera is the best option.

A standard video monitor is also appropriate, but it may not have the same features.

3.    Buy An Internal Backup Monitor For Your Car

Internal backup monitors are like rear-view mirrors that contain a small screen within the glass. Usually, internal monitors power off when not in use. It is also not as noticeable as external backup monitors.

You can either decide to purchase one that replaces your entire rear-view mirror or one that fastens atop your rear-view mirror.

4.    Buy The Necessary Cords You Need For Installation

You need to purchase the following cords to install the backup camera on your car:

  • RCA video cable
  • Two bare wire power cables
  • Splitter cords (for your camera and monitor) with connectors for video footage and power cables

Sometimes it is unnecessary to purchase the cords separately unless they are already included in your installation kit, or the camera model operates with wireless transmitters.

5.    Install The Backup Camera Cables

  • Detach your tail-end license plate. Unscrew the license plate and immediately place the screws in a safe place for later.


  • Remove the interior panel of the trunk to uncover the rear wirings. The interior panel is situated on the opposite side of the license plate’s mounting section.


  • Make a small hole, using a drill, in the license plate’s mounting area. Use a power drill with a high-speed twist drill bit and align the hole straight behind where the camera’s power and video cable placement will go.

The drill bit should have a diameter between and  (0.32 cm and 0.64 cm).

  • Use a rubber grommet and slip the cables through the hole to keep them in place.


  • Pull the splitting end cable through the drilled hole into the car’s trunk. The rubber grommet should lodge into the drilled hole, so make sure you pull it tight and that it is secure.


  • Locate the two reverse light wires. These cords connect the car’s taillights to the dashboard and directly hook to the vehicle’s taillights. Usually, it can be found in the trunk or hatch of your vehicle.


  • Tie the reverse light cables and the camera cables with electrical tape.


  • If necessary, fuse the RCA cable to the camera’s video connector and extend the video wire to where the fuse box is (you can find it under the steering wheel).


6.    Mount The Backup Camera

  • After installing the rear-view monitor and the camera cords, link the backup camera to the power and video cable. The power and video cable should stick out of the hole you made in the license plate mounting area.


  • Attach the camera to the license plate. Read through the manufacture’s instructions on how to attach it to the front of the license plate.

If the camera you purchased is attached to the back of the license plate, align the camera with the license plate’s holes and thread screws through them.

  • Reattach the license plate and trim the panels with a screwdriver. Gently tug on the backup camera and license plate to make sure that it is properly fastened.


  • Take your backup camera for a drive! Test the camera in your driveway before going on public roads. Once your camera is on, place an object behind your car to check if you can see it clearly. If it does not turn on, consult the installation manual, or go over the connected wires. Sometimes the cables are not correctly connected.


Many car dealerships urge drivers to install a backup camera because it assists with safe driving. There are a variety of backup cameras on the market today, and you can easily find a budget-friendly one. It is best to read more about the camera brand before purchasing it. Read customer reviews and visit stores to find a quality camera and monitor. The overall cost for installation will probably not be more than $1000, and although it can be a pricey investment, it is better to be safe than sorry!