The city needs revenue, and you are the perfect target. While most cops provide a valuable service to the communities in which they live and work, there are also those who sit lurking behind low signposts, shrubs, cars and buildings, quickly ruining your day with a citation that starts around $100 and is often far north of that. “But I was just keeping up with traffic” isn’t gonna fly (especially when you’re the only one on the road). For less than the cost of a couple good speeding tickets, you can protect yourself from getting pulled over when you inadvertently forget to gauge your speed. After all, it’s not like you were speeding on purpose, right?
Any day now there will probably even be an ‘app for that,’ enabling you to scope out the heat by plugging your iPhone into an iPod car adapter. Technology is getting bigger and better, with something new and improved available on the market almost every other day. And while a radar detector won’t play MP3s or store your daily calendar, they will provide an early warning through a wide assortment of options, unique alerts and functions, making them an essential component in your mobile electronics mix. But to get the most for your money, it’s important to understand the basic differences, features and terminology.
Here in the U.S., radar guns operate on three bands: X, K and Ka. City traffic-enforcement budgets vary widely and so does the use of radar technology. Depending on the funds at their disposal, traffic cops may be using any of the radar or laser bands in your area. So it makes sense to invest in a radar detector that monitors all bands, including laser, like a Chevy Camaro radar detector, Ford Focus radar detector, Toyota Prius radar detector or Escort radar detector. Modern radar guns can target your vehicle from the front, back or side, so even if he’s approaching from an oncoming lane, he could still be checking your speed. To provide maximum protection, make sure the radar detector you select is equipped with 360° detection, like an Escort Redline radar detector or Beltronics detector, alerting you to radar and laser signals emitted from any direction.
How do they work? It’s actually pretty simple. The radar and laser guns used by law enforcement measure your speed by bouncing waves or bursts of light off your vehicle and back to the gun, calculating the change in distance traveled. In turn, a radar detector continuously monitors commonly used radar frequencies and provides a warning through sounds, flashing lights or a combination of both for signals that match. This simplicity also gives the cop a slight edge. Remember: a radar gun generates radio waves. The more the gun is used, the more waves it will generate. The less it’s used, the less warning you’ll get. That’s why a stealth detector or Beltronics radar detector is most effective when there is moderate traffic—fair warning for those who like to barrel down those seemingly deserted side streets.
Laser detectors aren’t new. But with recent leaps in technology, they’re definitely improved. Monitoring all bands and protecting you from every angle, they’re simple to install and highly affordable…especially in comparison to the alternative!
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