Many of our clients who travel out of state have asked the team at Extreme Audio in Midlothian and Mechanicsville about custom-installed radar detectors. We always answer these questions by reconfirming their understanding that the use of a radar detector, under Article 10 of Title 46.2 of the Code of Virginia, is currently prohibited. The technology, however, remains uniquely interesting and worth explaining. If you are from North Carolina, West Virginia, Pennsylvania or Delaware, we would be happy to install a system for you.
What Is a Radar Detector?
A custom-installed radar detector includes, at minimum, a multi-element receiving antenna and a system control module. The antenna is mounted on the front of the vehicle, often behind a plastic bumper cover to keep it concealed. Internally, there are typically two horn-shaped receivers tuned to K- and X-band frequencies. When the system picks up signals that match those transmitted by a police radar gun, it provides a warning to the vehicle operator. Depending on the system you have chosen, the warnings can be presented by an audible alert, a flashing LED or a small display showing information about the type of signal. Many radar detectors can be upgraded with a rear-facing antenna for added protection.
What Is a Lidar Defense System?
Police forces around the country use a more advanced method of measuring vehicle speed known as lidar or laser. These guns transmit a pulsing beam of invisible light at a vehicle and measure the time it takes for the signal to bounce back to the gun. Lidar guns have an accuracy of plus or minus 1 mph, and the beam pattern is a narrow 2.5 feet at a distance of 1,000 feet from the operator. When targeted at a reflective surface, a lidar gun can display a vehicle’s speed in about 0.33 seconds.
A lidar defense system that is part of a custom-installed radar detector solution uses multiple transceivers mounted on the front or rear of the vehicle. These transceivers watch for police lidar signals. When they detect the pulsing beam of light, they begin to transmit a similar pattern that confuses the receiver in the gun. This shifted pattern prevents the law enforcement officer from getting a speed measurement.
Of crucial importance to the success of a lidar defense system is how it’s used. A process known as Jam-to-Kill is most successful in avoiding speeding tickets. Once the system has provided an alert and has begun transmitting its scrambled signal, the Jam-to-Kill process involves confirming that your vehicle is traveling within a safe speed, then canceling the signal transmission so the officer can get a reading and allow you to continue.
Ask the Radar Detector Experts at Extreme Audio
If you have questions about radar detectors and lidar defense systems, feel free to stop by Extreme Audio in Mechanicsville or Midlothian and talk to our team. You can also reach us by e-mail using our online contact form.