Reversing camera screen shows colored lines

No picture when you select reverse, just colored lines. What is wrong?

The backup camera picture is missing.

When you select reverse gear and check the Android headunit screen for obstructions, the usual expectation is an image from the camera. You expect to see some parking guidelines superimposed over the parking bays behind you. But sometimes, this doesn’t happen.

Colored Lines

One of the big brands gives you a stunning test image in place of the camera input should there be an error with the camera or its wiring. The colored lines may be more universal than the words ‘camera error’ or ‘check signal’ but are not as descriptive.

The cause

The backing-up cameras are often fitted outside the vehicle to give it the best view of the area behind the car. The problem with this is that the camera gets the worst of the elements, rain, freezing temperatures, very hot direct baking sun, all or any of these can accelerate the destruction of the cameras.

Poor quality

Many of the ‘gift’ cameras supplied with Android headunits as a ‘gift’ are just for testing the camera input on the bench. They are not designed to work for a long time; they are just made to be cheap enough to give as a gift.

The fix

The camera itself is a common failure when the camera works on one day but not the next. You don’t need to pull all the cables out to prove the camera is faulty. Depending on how it was connected, a replacement camera can be wired in temporarily to see if the picture returns. If you get a good image, even if it’s not correctly wired up, you can be sure the problem is with the old camera. Now that you have confidence that a replacement camera will fix the problem, you can run a new camera cable to the car’s rear.

Android guy who loves his android head units as much as he loves his cherry pie.

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