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Do Dash Cams Record When Your Car is Not Running?

Justin L. | 05.25.2023 | dash-cams featured momento-m7
Do Dash Cams Record When Your Car is Not Running?

Dash cams have become increasingly popular in recent years, serving as a reliable witness during car accidents and providing drivers with peace of mind while on the road. However, many drivers are not aware that their dash cam may also have a parking mode feature, which can provide additional protection even when their vehicle is parked and unattended.

Do Dash Cams Record When Your Car is Not Running?

Yes, dash cams from brands like Momento do record activity around your vehicle even while your vehicle's engine is not running. This is thanks to a feature called "Parking mode".

Parking mode allows your dash cam to continue recording even when the engine is turned off. This feature is particularly useful for those who park their cars in public places or areas where theft or vandalism may be a concern.

Important Note: Parking mode features are only available if your dash camera is hardwired to your vehicle's battery. Dash cams that are plugged into the 12V accessory outlet (aka cigarette lighter adapter) or OBD-II ports generally do not remain powered when the vehicle's engine is off. Thus, if you are interested in parking mode, please make sure you have a dash cam professionally installed and hardwired to your vehicle.

How Parking Mode Works on Momento Dash Cams

Momento dash cams, like the M7 or M6, have parking mode enabled by default. While the engine is off, Momento cameras do remain active, but do not store video until an event occurs.

There are multiple ways that events are triggered on Momento dash cams:

  1. Motion detection mode, which triggers the camera to start recording when it detects any movement around the car. Motion events can be triggered by either the front or rear camera.
  2. Impact detection mode, which is the most advanced type of parking mode. This mode uses sensors to detect any impact or collision with the car This is the most effective way to ensure that any incidents involving your parked vehicle are captured on camera.
  3. Eco parking mode, which is only available on the Momento M7. This mode works just like motion detection mode, but utilizes a radar sensor instead of the camera's image sensor, resulting in a 90% reduction in current draw from your battery. At this time, Eco parking mode events can only be triggered by the M7 front camera.

One great thing about Momento dash cams is that parking mode recordings start 15 seconds before the event occurred - and 15 seconds afterwards. That way, you can clearly see what happened leading up to and following the event.

Use Parking Mode to Report Break-ins or Hit-and-Runs

There is no worse feeling than returning to your car, only to find that it has fallen victim to a hit-and-run or break-in. Thankfully, Momento dash cameras can help make the recovery process much easier.

If you have a Momento dash cam, you will have high-resolution video evidence of what happened to your vehicle. This evidence can be vital to filing a police report or making an insurance claim. (Tip: if valuable possessions are stolen from your vehicle, you can make a claim on your homeowner's insurance to get payment towards replacements).

Parking Mode Events Activate All Cameras

Unlike many of our competitors, parking mode events can be triggered by all of the cameras connected to your Momento system. Furthermore, parking mode recordings will activate all of your cameras, regardless of which camera triggered the event.

All Momento dash cameras include a front and rear camera, giving you up to 270º degrees of surveillance coverage.

If you have the Momento M7, you can also add the Momento IC6 Interior Camera as a third camera so that you can record what happens inside of your vehicle while it is parked. This can provide vital evidence in the event of a break-in or rideshare incident.

Will a Dash Cam with Parking Mode Drain My Vehicle's Battery?

Momento dash cams have programmable voltage thresholds, which will automatically shut the camera off if your vehicle's battery is dying. With this feature in place, you can have peace of mind that your Momento dash camera will not completely drain your vehicle's battery.

With that said, it is important to understand that your vehicle's battery recharges with driving activity. If your vehicle is parked for an extended period of time, your battery may not be generating sufficient voltage to power your Momento dash cam to activate parking mode.


Overall, parking mode is an incredibly useful feature that provides added protection for your vehicle and peace of mind for you as a driver. By understanding the different types of parking mode available on Momento dash cams and adjusting your settings accordingly, you can ensure that your camera is always ready to capture any incidents that may occur while your car is parked.

To find a Momento dealer/installer near you, please visit our Dealer Locator page today!

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