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A car compass is one handy piece of equipment that is a necessity for your car. It will help you navigate your way through unfamiliar roads. Your navigation app may tell you to turn to the east or west, which can be confusing for you if you are not equipped with a compass. Moreover, if you lose your way, it is easier to find your way back with a car compass. You can still find your way even if your phone loses battery.
When purchasing a car compass, it is vital that you should know the type of compass that you wish to buy. There is a digital car compass and a bubble car compass. The bubble compass is the simpler model as it requires no batteries, unlike the digital compass. When mounting a bubble compass, you will need to place it on a flat surface to ensure that it will provide precise readings. There are different ways to mount a car compass, but the more common ways to mount them is using a suction cup, Velcro, or pinching a hole to screw them together. Additionally, you also have the option to purchase a rearview mirror compass so that the directions will be displayed on your rearview mirror.
You should also pick if you want your compass will display a North (N) or South (S) Heading. This is a useful information to remember as the compass will display a reading that is opposite to the direction that you are facing.
This list will provide a comprehensive review of five car compasses. Each of them has their own pros and cons, which can leave you feeling confused when making a choice. Find out the best car compass that you can get your hands on based on the list below.
Shoreline Illuminated Marine Compass
The first car compass that we have reviewed is the Shoreline Illuminated Marine Compass that can be easily used during day or night. This is UV protected for safe use during the day. When it is darker, you can still see the direction safely as the dial is lighted for easier viewing. Since this is a heavy-duty 12V marine compass, it is able to draw low power usage, which provides versatility in use. This is best to use for boat rides. Moreover, it gives out a zero spin for a more accurate reading. It is also assembled with a jeweled pivot. The compass heading is large, which makes it easier for you to read. It is easy to operate and quick to install, which makes it easy for you to handle. You can mount it easily to your car for easier viewing of your device. It is an affordable marine compass that is reliable and accurate for the price. It measures 4.3 x 6.4 x 9 inches with a weight of 12 ounces. However, it can be hard to adjust, which can be pretty difficult if this is your sole device for navigation. Moreover, the oil inside the Shoreline Illuminated Marine Compass tends to leak, which can be messy and cause the compass to be less effective.
Ritchie S-53 Explorer Car Compass
The next car compass on the list is the Ritchie S-53 Explorer that can be mounted to the surface of your car without obstructing the view or cutting a hole in your car. This unit comes with a low-profile design and it is also extremely compact. It is designed with a 2 ¾ inches direct-read dial that measures 70 mm. It is designed with a sapphire jewel and hardened steel for the pivot dial movement. It is also equipped with a magnet with a powerful directive force. This allows for a quicker and more efficient heading lock on. During the night time, it is powered with a 12V green to ensure that you can easily read the direction that the compass states when it is dark. It comes with a sun shield that you can move to protect your device against the heat of the sun. In terms of construction, it is made with using high-temperature composite to ensure that it will last longer. This is also equipped with a compensator to adjust deviations quickly. It is protected with an E-50-C cover and it weighs one pound. You can also opt to use 6 volt or 24-volt lighting options. Moreover, it comes with a five-year warranty for your peace of mind.
The next car compass on the list is the Ritchie Navigation X-10-A Blue Dial Auto Bracket Compass that you can easily mount on your windshield or dashboard. It comes with a two-sided mounting pad with its own adhesive. Moreover, it comes with a bracket that can be reversed to 300 degrees. It is a 2-in-1 car compass that can be easily read and it comes with a highly visible dial. You can view this during the nighttime using the internal green lighting. This car compass is designed with a hardened steel pivot and a sapphire jewel movement. Moreover, it comes with an integrated compensator for optimum functionality. This also comes with a high-temperature composite material that allows for a wider operating range. It also comes with its own compensator. On another hand, the replacement lighting that you can use is the RS-0105 XSP, while the replacement bracket is an RS-003. It is quite compact as it measures 5 x 4 x 3 inches and it weighs 6.1 ounces, which makes it easy to fit on your car. However, there are some issues when it comes to the accuracy and reliability of the Ritchie Navigation X-10-A Blue Dial Auto Bracket Compass. However, there is a five-year manufacturer’s warranty that is able to protect the user from any manufacturer’s defect.
Ritchie X-21Bb Compass – Dash Mount
The next car compass on the list is the Ritchie X-21Bb Compass – Dash Mount, which you can easily attach on a dashboard or a bulkhead to keep your vision unobstructed while you are driving. It comes with a two-inch direct read dial and it can be mounted using a 2 1/16 inch mounting hole. It also uses a directive force magnet for improved accuracy. There is also a 12V green night lighting that allows you to view the directions stated on the compass easily during the nighttime. For this compass, it comes with the integrated Green NiteVu Lighting for easier viewing of the dial. While the standard lighting is color green, there are models that carry the color red or blue. There are some models that use clear lighting. Moreover, you can adjust this compass up to 30 degrees. Similar to most Ritchie Compasses, it comes with a sapphire jewel and hardened steel for the pivot dial movement and it is constructed with a high-temperature composite material. This allows for a wider operating range. However, the Ritchie X-21Bb Compass does not come with a built-in compensator. Moreover, there are also issues when it comes to the adjustment options because there is not adjustment option. This means that if your compass produces inaccurate results, you may have to mentally adjust to the right direction whilst driving.
COOLBUY PARK LED Light Pivoting Compass Dashboard Dash Mount
The final car compass on the list is the COOLBUY PARK LED Light Pivoting Compass Dashboard Dash Mount that is equipped with a LED light for easier direction reading. Moreover, it is designed with an adjustable mounting bracket. It is a pivoting compass that is designed for your car or other types of vehicles like a boat, camping vans, or trucks. It is designed with a precision dial to make it easy to read. For the mounting of this model, it comes with a bracket that can be adjusted. It also comes with a visible rubber line to ensure that you can read the directions easily, which allows for a faster response time and a more precise result. For the structure, it is made with a high-quality plastic material that is resistant to corrosion to ensure the longevity of use. While it is a durable compass, it is not waterproof, which is why it is vital to never let it soak in water. In terms of structure and measurement, it has a dimension of 3.3 x 3 x 2.5 inches and it is lightweight at 77 grams. This causes less distraction from your view when you mount in on your dashboard. It also comes with a LED light for easier viewing at night. You can install it on your dashboard using a nut screw. Apart from the compass, there is also a set of accessories that can be used for installing the car compass.
We have tested five car compasses that offer severe differences when it comes to its features. Some of them provide more accurate readings than others. Moreover, some of the other car compasses provide a better value for the money as they perform better.
We hope that this review has helped you when it comes to making a choice in terms of your car compass.