You don’t have to be a serial speeder to consider having a radar detector in your car. Even careful drivers occasionally find themselves driving over the speed limit. Radar detectors for your car keep you informed of who else is on the road, including police and other emergency vehicles. Many radar detectors also show you where red lights and speed cameras are located so you can adjust your driving accordingly.
At this time, radar detectors are allowed in most areas, not including Washington, D.C., Virginia and on military bases, where they are illegal to use and not available for purchase. Several states also limit the use of detectors in commercial vehicles. Check your local laws. Radar detectors should not be confused with radar jammers, which are illegal in all 50 states.
Radar Detector Features
Radar detectors are designed to easily fit into most vehicles and to integrate with many other in-car technologies, including Bluetooth-compatibility, smartphone integration, and built-in GPS. A few other features to that should inform your purchase are the display and the sensitivity of the detector.
Display: Look for a radar detector with a display that you can read easily and quickly. You may also find it helpful to customize the display so you only see the information you need.
Detection and Sensitivity: Radar guns use a number of different frequency bands, and the more frequencies you can detect, the better your chances are of catching them. Look for a radar detector that can detect X, K, and Ka radar frequencies as well as laser frequencies, with VG-2 and POP mode detection as a bonus. You’ll also want to consider the detector’s ability to filter out false alerts (as with GPS AutoLearn technology) and its sensitivity (range), plus its capability for switching sensitivities between highway and city modes.