Fleet managers are always concerned about how much time their company’s vehicles spend on the road. The longer the vehicle stays in motion, the more fuel it uses and the higher the business’s fuel costs. They want to know the routes a vehicle follows, at what speed they are being driven, and how effectively the drivers are working, which is where installing a vehicle tracking device comes into play.
In this article, we’ll tell you all you need to know about installing a vehicle tracking device, what the factors are that affect the installation timeline, the steps to install it, and how to choose a GPS tracker that will best fit your needs.
Factors Affecting Installation Timeline
When installing a vehicle tracking device, whether it’s in a truck, car, van, or a motorbike, the installation time can be anything between 30 and 45 minutes per vehicle. However, this can vary depending on a range of factors.
Fleet size and complexity
As is expected, a fleet with more vehicles will, in total, have a longer installation timeline than a fleet with only a few vehicles. The installation time will also depend on the number of technicians that will be assigned to your installation.
A bigger fleet may also have its GPS trackers installed over several days, which will allow you to only decommission specific vehicles from work on specific days. This ensures that regular operations can continue even while vehicles are taken off the road for GPS tracker installation.
The complexity of the installation will also impact the installation timeline. If you choose a simple, easy-to-install GPS tracker, it would require less time than installing a more complex system with lots of wiring and a longer setup time.
Type of tracking system
As mentioned above, there are two basic vehicle tracking devices to choose from: OBD GPS or a Hardwired GPS
The OBD GPS tracking devices can be installed quickly and easily and do not need a lot of wiring to be installed. They can be installed by non-experts in about 5 minutes and can be easily removed and installed in another vehicle.
OBD GPS trackers are easily attached to the vehicle’s onboard diagnostic (OBD) port which is normally located in the glove compartment or driver’s footwell.
The more complex hardwired GPS tracking devices are hardwired into the vehicle. Installing these devices takes longer, with each installation taking about 30-40 minutes. They offer better device security, as they are installed and hidden under the vehicle’s hood, which makes it harder for thieves to remove or employees to tamper with.
Hardwired tracking devices also offer advanced data collection. Since it’s connected to the vehicle’s wiring, it can provide fleet managers with a lot of valuable information relating to the vehicle.
Steps in the Installation Process
If you are not 100% confident with installing a GPS vehicle tracking system, rather consult with a professional installer. However, if you do decide to install the GPS tracker yourself, these are the steps you’ll need to follow:
When installing a GPS tracking system, you won’t need to do any hardware setup if you’ve opted for an OBD GPS tracking device. The device is plugged into the vehicle’s OBD and it’s ready for use.
On the other hand, when installing a hardwired GPS tracker in the company’s car or van, you’d need to set up and prepare the device for installation. This includes connecting the device to the vehicle’s 12V power supply and attaching the wiring receiver to the wiring harness. This is why we always recommend using a qualified auto electrician like ours at Crystal Ball to do the installation for you.
No wiring is needed when installing an OBD GPS tracker. It’s a “plug-and-play” system and can be used as soon as you’ve connected it to the OBD port. However, when installing hardwired trackers, you will have a lot of wiring to deal with.
- Locating the vehicle’s power source and connecting it to the GPS tracking device
- Securing the connection with tape to prevent grounding
- Connecting the GPS tracking device’s white wire to the vehicle’s ignition wire
- Securing the GPS tracker to hide it or stop it from moving around while the vehicle is in motion
Because of its plug-and-play functionality, an OBD GPS tracker does not need any software configuration and can be used right after installation. However, you will need to install the companion app (which increases the functionality of the tracker) on your PC or mobile phone, register an account, and connect the account to the tracker.
If you opt for a hardwired GPS tracker, you will need to do software configuration to receive and use the data from the tracker. If the system does come with a companion app, you’d also need to register for a user account and connect the account to the tracker.
Installation By Your Provider
For organisations with large fleets and limited time, the best option is always to request GPS tracker installation from your provider. Trained technicians will install the wiring and do all the needed wiring connections in your vehicles. The installation will take around 30-40 minutes per vehicle.
It is always advised that you ask a trained and experienced person to handle the installation and configuration of your GPS device. This ensures that the wires are correctly connected and that the device is properly set up and configured. It will also prevent the equipment from being damaged in installation.
GPS devices allow fleet managers to stay abreast of the movements and locations of their business vehicles. For best-in-class hardwired GPS trackers like Crystal Ball’s FleetTracker, professional installation is the best choice to ensure you get the best from your fleet.
Speak to us and we’ll be happy to organise installation so you can start enjoying the immense benefits telematics technology can offer you.