Page 4 - Mount detector properly
The Number 1 Question Radar Roy receives from clients is how to properly mount their radar detector in their vehicle. Their are basically two types of electronic transmitting devices police can use to capture the speed of your vehicle, radar guns and laser guns.
Radar is the most common. Radar is basically a microwave radio signal. At 1000 feet, a radar beam shot from a police radar gun is approximately 85 feet wide. This radar beam can normally penetrate glass, plastic, cardboard and even your body. What radar has a problem penetrating are metals, including some window tints that have meatlized layers.
Laser is a light beam and is only 18" wide at 500 feet. Because the beam is so narrow, and because it's light, the beam can be effected by virtually anything you put between the laser gun and the detector.
Don't mount it high!
However you will see on this page, that mounting it in this manner will not allow it to receive laser alerts. A laser beam shot at 500 feet is only 18" wide when it hits your vehicle. Police target either the front license plate or the headlamps. If the radar detector is mounted in the center of the windshield, it will be too high to receive any of the "splatter" that may indicate you are being targeted by a police laser gun.
There are also several other problems with this method:
1. In most cases, mounting the radar detector in this position will place it in the center of the windshield. This can cause a visual obstruction while you are driving. In Minnesota, it is illegal to mount anything to your windshield that may obstruct your vision (169.71: No person shall drive or operate any motor vehicle with objects suspended between the driver and windshield)
2. Mounting a radar detector too high will cause you to take your eyes off the road when it is activated.
3. If left in your car while parked, you will be exposing it to thieves.
4. This position is also a dead give away for law enforcement that you have a countermeasure device. While Radar Roy was a traffic officer, it was common to pull behind a motorist who was speeding and see their radar detector mounted directly in the center of the windshield. Even though the use of a radar detector is legal in all states, with the exception of Virginia and Washington D.C., some officers don't appreciate their use. You will have a better chance of getting a break, if you make it less noticeable.
5. You will have other motorists following behind making you their trailblazer. If you then encounter an emergency situation and slam on your brakes, the vehicles following may slam into you.
Mount it Low!
Consider using Velcro to mount your detector on the dash or using the supplied windshield mounting brackets and mounting it low on the windshield. By mounting it this way, making sure that the windshield wipers are not blocking the front, you will draw the least amount of attention and obtain the best laser and radar detection.
Ensure that the controls are accessible
Make sure that you can easily reach the volume and mode controls (highway, city and mute) on your detector. For models that have "Smart Cords", such as the Beltronics RX65 and the Escort 8500, get in the habit of muting your system with the button on the cord, rather than the detector, if it is easier to reach. For those models without automute, you MUST have easy access to the controls if you want to keep the detector from screaming at you for an extended period of time.
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