Find Discount Radar Detectors Online

The search for discount radar detectors can be frustrating. If you have to spend an hour wading through search results just to save an extra $5, have you really ended up ahead? Probably not. Your time is worth much more than $5 per hour. To save you that frustration, we've identified some of the best sources of discount radar detectors.

Your Best Sources of Discount Radar Detectors

Road Trip Ready has spent some time reviewing the best places to go for cheap radar detectors. Here's a rundown of where you're most likely to find quality products at fair prices:

  • Amazon.com: A good rule of thumb is that Amazon is the first place you should check for a good deal on anything. No, they're not always the cheapest. But at the very least, you can spend two minutes on Amazon and get a very good overview of the most competitive prices for a wide range of radar detectors.

    Search Amazon for radar detectors >

  • BuyRadarDetectors.com: No offense to Amazon, but sometimes you search for an item there and end up with a bunch of irrelevant results mixed in with the relevant ones. So, here's a site with nothing but radar detectors. Not only will you find what you're looking for a little more quickly, but you'll also avoid making the impulse buys that are so common on Amazon.

    In case looks matter to you, BuyRadarDetectors is a well-designed website. They offer same-day shipping, which can be handy if you're leaving for your road trip in three days and left your purchase until the last minute. And if you're really just trying to save money (who isn't?), you'll want to check out the page full of discount radar detectors.

  • RadarBusters.com: Here's another well-organized, intuitive site for finding good deals on radar detectors. They provide separate sections for laser jammers, photo radar products, motorcycle radar detectors, and more. This is probably the best website for a true gadget junkie.

Radar Detector Ratings: Where to Find Them

Want the best radar detector? Check out some radar detector ratings. In this age of the internet, product ratings are never far away. Of course, that works both ways. You can actually waste a lot of time searching the web before you find helpful ratings and product reviews. There are a lot of sloppy websites out there.

Let us save you some time. Here are the websites that we think have the most useful radar detector ratings:

Amazon.com: You probably already thought of Amazon, but we had to mention it just in case. The one problem with Amazon searches is that even if you're in the right category and use a precise search term, you can end up with a lot of irrelevant items.

IntelliReview: If you want to see customer ratings but would also like to read summaries of customer reviews (to save you the time of wading through them one by one), IntelliReview's radar detector ratings will be just what you're looking for.

IntelliReview also provides price comparisons from several leading websites. This is a great way to scope out the market.

CNET: If you want to get a few expert opinions with your customer reviews, try CNET. CNET enables you to use ratings and editors' reviews to make sure you're getting a good deal. It also provides price ranges from several websites.

Finding the Best Overall Radar Detector

It's not easy to say which would be the best overall radar detector for you. Your driving habits and specific needs will play a big part in your decision. And different models have different attributes.

Most of us will use money as the biggest factor, and then try to get as many features as we can for the price. But that approach can really box you in. What if your price range is unrealistically small? Is it worth even $50 to have a radar detector that meets few, if any, of your needs?

Here are some features to consider as you look for discount radar detectors:

  • City mode. If you do lots of city driving, you may want this feature. It helps filter out annoying false alarms caused by various electronics.

  • K-band testing. You'll want this. K-band is a very common type of radar.

  • Ka-band testing. Ka-band is a newer, harder-to-detect radar that has gradually overtaken K-band in popularity among cops.

  • Laser detector testing. The laser detection capabilities that come with radar detectors are generally not effective. Don't pay extra for this feature. You're better off with a laser jammer, though they're pricey, and illegal in some states.

  • Signal strength. Most radar detectors gauge the strength of the radar signal, giving you an idea of how close the officer is.

  • Safety Warning System. This feature gives you warnings about upcoming hazards, construction, and road maintenance.

  • Text display. Any unit with Safety Warning System will also have text display - that's how you'll see the messages.

  • VG-2. VG-2 is a radar-detector-detector used by the police to determine who's using a radar detector. But since radar detectors are only illegal in Virginia and Washington DC, you won't need this feature unless you live in that region or plan to drive there often.

  • X-band testing. This is an old type of radar now used only by police in New Jersey and certain parts of Ohio. As with VG-2, you'll only need this feature if you plan to drive in those parts of the country often.

Here's a fun way to find the best discount radar detectors: Visit RadarTest.com and use their DetectorSelector. It's an interactive online tool that gives you a customized recommendation based on the specific information you provide.

Wait a Minute....Aren't Radar Detectors Illegal?

Before you plunk down cash, you'll want to know, are radar detectors illegal? In the United States, the answer is generally no. But there are a few things you should know.

First of all, if you're driving a commercial vehicle over 10,000 pounds, don't even think about it. Radar detectors are illegal in these larger commercial vehicles under federal law.

If you're driving a private vehicle, you generally have little to worry about. In which states are radar detectors illegal? Only in Virginia, as well as in Washington DC and on U.S. military bases. And in Illinois, New York, and New Jersey, it's illegal to use them in any vehicle over 18,000 pounds.

There's one more rub. Minnesota and California prohibit you from attaching the device to your windshield, apparently out of concern that it will block your vision.

Now, in which foreign countries are radar detectors off-limits? As it turns out, in most of them. But we'll focus on our neighbors to the north.

If you're road tripping to Canada, be advised that you can't use your little magic box in the provinces of Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, and Manitoba, in Yukon Territory, and the Northwest Territories. (You'll be fine in Alberta, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan.)

Here's a fun fact: In Norway, it's legal to own, buy, or sell radar detectors, but illegal to use them. Talk about having your cake and not eating it.

In closing, here's some information on efforts to convince the state of Virginia not to keep radar detectors illegal.

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