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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What I'm trying to achieve is a backup camera that is always on when in reverse, as well as being able to be turned on by a toggle switch anytime my Focus is not in reverse.

I currently have my camera set to a toggle switch I installed on my dash. I know that if I tap into the reverse light then it will turn on automatically when I put the car in reverse. How do I combine these two possible power sources for this single device, without them interfering with each other?
 

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What you want is a single pole double throw switch, also known as SPDT. You can get a simple SPDT switch to connect the camera power input to either a.) 12V from your fuse panel or b.) 12V from the backup light. You can also get a SPDT "center off" switch, which has three positions, so you can have your camera power completely off or choose from the two power sources.

Note you can also use a DPDT (double pole double throw) switch with or without "center off" as you desire. In this case you would only use one pole of the switch and leave the other pole unwired. I mention this because DPDT switches are sometimes easier to find.

I would recommend using a 3 amp fuse inline from the fuse panel and another one inline from the backup light before wiring each power source to the switch. That way if there is a short in the camera circuit, the lower rated fuse will blow before the backup light fuse does.
 

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I could suggest a relay.

12v to wire 30
Reverse light to 85
Ground 86
Camera to 87
Insulate 87a
Then put your switch on a line that bypasses wire 30 to 87
 

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Spdt relay pin 85 switched 12v from your switch. Pin 86 ground. Pin 87a reverse trigger. Pin 30 backup camera. Pin 87 12v constant. When switch is off the reverse trigger can trigger the canera power whenever. When you hit sitch it will disconnect from reverse signal and go to 12v
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Awesome, all of those options make sense. I already have a few relays lying around so I will try that this weekend when I have some free time. Thanks all for the help, greatly appreciated.
 
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