All truck drivers are required to install ELD devices in their trucks (source).
If you landed on this blog, you are probably looking to get yourself a new device or replace the one you currently have.
If you are still asking Why Should I Get An ELD Device check our other article.
ELD technology is continuously being developed and changed; therefore there are many kinds of electronic logging devices available in the market today.
In this article, we take a look at the best ELD options out there to help you comply with the ELD Mandate and avoid HOS violations (source) that come with some hefty penalties.
In addition, we will answer the following questions: Which eld devices are the best eld units? which ones are most affordable and which units are best for owner operators?
The Best ELD Devices on the Market
|Product Name||Initial Cost||Monthly Cost||Best Feature|
|Keep Truckin||$150||$20||Fuel monitoring|
|Garmin eLog||$249||$0||No Monthly Fee|
|Stoneridge EZ-ELD||$169||$15||Fleet Management|
|Blue Ink BIT||$295||$0||for small fleets|
|Rand McNally ELD 50||$150||$20||Driver connect app|
|LINXUP ELD||$149.99||$49.99||GPS integration|
|Omnitracs ELD||$800||$23||robust functionality|
|peoplenet ELD||$0 * w/ contract||$50||IFTA reporting|
|Gorilla Safety ELD||$0||$10||full fleet Mgmt|
|Samsara ELD||$129||$400 (annual license)||Dash cams optional|
Our 1st Pick: KeepTruckin ELD Device
Forbes named KeepTruckin among the top 100 Cloud Companies in 2018 for top-notch driving innovation. You can rely on products made by this company as they are FMCSA certified.
Their eld devices provide you with the simplest, most affordable way to become compliant with state laws.
The KeepTruckin electronic logging device provides monthly pricing, which is similar to most ELD units on the market.
It features fuel monitoring and geofencing to allow you to remain safe on the road.
There is no upfront cost, and the providers offer you monthly installments of just $35 which you must pay to them over a contracted period of 3 years.
Easy to operate
KeepTruckin ELD is probably the most accessible electronic logging device in the globe. It comes with a simple, contemporary and user-friendly app. This app lets you edit driver logs and duly status hassle free.
Some drivers say that using the outdated Keep Truckin app without an eld attached to the vehicle lets truckers cheat on their e-logs. The driver can change the past duty status. The manufacturers have made an ELD cheat sheet that demonstrates how to avoid electronic logging device violations.
The app has a DOT Inspection Mode that is very straightforward to use. The tracker can easily show the police his log history data without experiencing problems.
KeepTruckin assures truckers that they can use their ELD devices to take photos in case they are involved in an accident or other similar situation to help with insurance claims. Pictures taken can be sent to enforcement officers via the app.
Modern telematics features
Apart from the standard features seen in almost all ELD devices, KeepTruckin has input some modern day features to their ELD devices like engine diagnostics, fuel monitoring, geofencing and tampering alert system.
Final Words About Keep Truckin ELD
Keep Truckin ELD devices are easy to install and come with a user-friendly app that allows the driver to view driving logs and status easily.
In general, it is a great device to help you comply with the ELD mandate and avoid getting into trouble.
Our 2nd Pick: Garmin eLog ELD Device
Garmin is famous for making high-quality technology for data recording, data sharing, GPS tracking and vehicle navigation systems. It is a leading company in the field of producing integrated top-notch electronic logging devices for truckers.
Their devices are more likely to cost more as they come wholly loaded with efficient software, without the requirement for additional costs or subscriptions.
Garmin's ELD unit is top-rated as it offers a superb eld choice for drivers. It has integrated software and quality premium features.
Many truckers consider it as among the best eld choices to use on the road, and there is no need for added fees.
The Garmin eLog is compatible with any regular 6 or 9 pin port. Installing it is very straightforward, and it starts to function as soon as it is plugged in.
It's compatible with many other devices manufactured by Garmin, and its proprietary software lets you connect the electronic logging system to a tabled or smartphone that has GPS navigation.
The manufacturers have made this device to last. It weighs 2.5 ounces, has a cylindrical shape, and has a sleek black casing. You can access information on your eld using a USB or via Bluetooth.
Garmin eLog is compatible with a wide range of Garmin devices. As a result, the trucker can get personalized data updates and reminders via an app. This eld comes at an average cost of $249.99 via the Garmin website.
Hours of Service (HOS) recording is compliant with FMSCA mandate on ELD devices.
Garmin eLog time sheets and information format meet the standards required by FMSCA.
Enforcement officers and fleet operators can view the data logs through Bluetooth or USB.
The driver can also present the timesheet data using the Garmin eLog app on a smartphone. Most of the data including engine start time and resting duration are recorded automatically. This makes it easier for the driver to present data logs easily to safety officers.
This ELD from Garmin is your basic solution to ensuring you follow FMSCA laws. You purchase it, install it, and drive your truck. There are no subscription fees.
Final Pointers - Garmin Elog
The Garmin eLog is easy to install and carries no subscription fees. It is a well-built electronic device that is an excellent buy for fleet companies. However, it does have some downsides like unclear technical specifications and inadequate FMS compliance.
Our 3rd Pick : Stoneridge EZ-ELD Device
Stoneridge Inc. Started in 1965 as a producer of auto devices in Ohio.
The company has expanded its services to 15 countries and is now based in Michigan.
They understand the importance of being compliant with HOS rules; therefore they are committed to delivering extraordinary products for vehicle owners.
EZ-ELD device offers you control over FMSCA compliance requirements, to allow you to carry on with your work in peace.
Installation is quick and straightforward, and you have a stress-free and secure time with this high quality device.
The manufacturers have over 50 years of experience in making products for the automotive market, so you know you are getting a great device.
Fleet Management Software
As we saw earlier, Garmin is a popular manufacturer that deals in a wide range of services.
On the other hand, Stoneridge is a company that focuses more on fleet management systems and CMV tools.
This company knows the needs of both the fleet owners and the truck drivers.
As a result, Stoneridge makes the process easier for fleet operators to access, duplicate, store, and edit data as needed.
Furthermore, the office teams can send information logs to every EZ-ELD device directing given that the devices are online through the Apple/Android app.
The app that comes with this eld is entirely functional and can store, distribute, and showcase files for up to 1/2 a year, and display time-sheet data for up to one month at a time.
Free training and reporting
Stoneridge’s internet resources are clear and beneficial. Their website features manuals, FAQs, and training materials, which are more extensive compared to Garmin website. Moreover, Stoneridge provides free reporting on DVI (Driver Vehicle Inspection) and IFTA (International Fuel Tax Agreement).
Low monthly fees
The EZ-ELD costs $169. To use their proprietary software requires some monthly charges of $15.
Their software does help to save company costs that would be spent in extra man-hours taken in filling forms, submitting documents, and exchanging data, but the cost of the device is still higher than that of Garmin.
This is because the Garmin eLog is a one-time purchase with no monthly subscriptions.
Stoneridge EZ-ELD Conclusion
The Stoneridge EZ-ELD is highly suited to the needs of fleet companies. The manufacturers have focused on achieving great technical capabilities. This eld is quite similar to the eLog.
While the Garmin eLog is concentrated on trucker satisfaction, function and cross-platform functioning, the Stoneridge EZ-ELD is more extensive.
Our 4th Pick : Blue Ink BIT ELD Device
Blue Ink Tech company produces high quality FMSCA compliant ELD systems that come with no monthly fees. This company is aimed at producing user-friendly features on their ELD devices to cater for both drivers and fleet managers.
With a Blue Ink Bit ELD device drivers can access their driving logs recorded by the device and app.
They can also conduct regular vehicle inspection and track remaining hours in their shift.
Fleet operators and dispatchers can easily view working logs for all the drivers, check routes used and get notifies of any violations.
Features of Blue Ink
The setup process is quick and easy. All you need to do is to plug in the device into the truck's diagnostic port and drive. Afterwards, connect your smartphone to the device through Bluetooth.
BIT ELD form Blue Ink Tech is compliant with the regulations set by FMSCA regarding ELD devices. The fleet operators and dispatch can access the driving logs and edit or print them.
Great for smaller fleets
The BIT ELD has essential functions; therefore it is perfect for smaller fleets, which do not need a lot of advanced functions. Those who do not want to input too much money into an ELD device.
The Blue Ink BIT electronic Logging Device includes the IFTA mileage resource. It helps drivers and fleet owners to keep track of the miles taken.
The fleet owners can also use this device to set up maintenance schedules for their fleets and view where the trucks are being driven while they're on the road.
Blue Ink BIT ELD Review
12all in all, the Blue Ink BIT ELD Device is perfect for smaller fleets, which do not need advanced features. It doesn’t come with any monthly fees, making it an ideal choice. Though it doesn’t have many advanced features, it’s simplicity is just great.
Our 5th Pick : Rand McNally ELD 50® E-Log Device
Rand McNally is a producer of maps, navigation systems and travel content.
In recent times, this company has been dived into vehicle technology manufacturing.
With over 160 years in experience, this company continues to produce innovative goods and services.
Rand McNally ELD 50 possesses many robust features.
It is easy to install and lets truckers view and certify their working logs using a smartphone, tablet and updated Rand McNally gadgets.
This gadget costs $149,99, which is a bit cheaper than the EZ ELD.
Features of ELD 50
All you need to do is to plug in your ELD 50 into a J-Bus port.
Proceed to download the DriverConnect app and choose a monthly subscription plan.
Pair your ELD 50 to your smart device through Bluetooth.
The Driverconnect app replaces the need for paper logs and offers a user-friendly interface.
Sync your phone
You can use your Android/iOS smartphone or tablet, or updated Rand McNally device to see and verify driving logs, complete DVIR reports, and switch duty status efficiently.
Furthermore, you can leverage your smart phone’s cellular data to store your working logs on the Web Portal.
Given that there's no internet connection or you don't have a mobile device, Rand McNally's ELD 50 will continue with recording the Hours of Service (HOS) logs. It has a capacity of storing up to two days worth of recorded data.
You can only get access to the DriveConnect web portal after you have bought, installed, and connected the ELD 50 to an Android or iOS device.
After installation, you can buy the web service, which comes with some monthly charges.
Fleet Management focus
In general, the ELD 50 seems to be focused more on the overall fleet than the individual drivers.
This device is easy to install, but it can only store up to two days worth of information at a time, which is less than that of Stoneridge’s 6-month storage capacity.
The ELD 50 depends entirely on the monthly software subscription to work.
Moreover, if your phone is not connected during that 2-day window, then information is not backed up.
This may be tricky if the driver accidentally losses his/her phone.
Fortunately, if a subscription is bought, the web portal provides storage for all logs, time sheets, and metrics, which makes up to six months worth of data readily accessible from a smartphone or tablet.
Rand McNally ELD Conclusion
While there are multiple upsides to having a Rand McNally ELD 50 ®, if you choose to get this device be prepared for potentially unverified costs.
The company has not been direct in availing the cost of their monthly fees, so it is best for you to contact them directly and ask for the price.
Our 6th Pick: LINXUP ELD Device
Linxup is a dedicated company that provides simple, but highly-equipped vehicle tracking systems.
Their GPS Fleet Tracking service if efficient and comes at a friendly price.
Given that you are in need of a complete package of GPS tracking, dynamic data plan certified electronic logging device with automatic IFTA resources, and robust fleet management systems, the LINXUP eld device may be the best choice for you.
Features of LINXUP
Different from other ELDs
LINXUP eld is different from other devices in some ways. For starters, it is not a BYOD (Bring your own device).
That means that drivers cannot sync to their Android or iOS devices the logs and then access them.
Rather, it is necessary for them to buy the LINXUP tablet.
The manufacturers claim that by requiring their own proprietary tablet, they are reducing the risk of noncompliance.
While it may ensure compliance as well as reduce risks and heighten profits for fleets, their motive is not clear.
With the normal BYOD systems, typically the drivers carry their own Apple or Android smartphones or tablets to record logging data and access the time sheets and metrics.
In such a case, if the driver forgets to make payments for his/her phone bills, it could lead to lost tracking information. In addition it can lead to late recording and more stress.
As a result, the LINXUP integrated package takes the responsibility back to the fleet managers, ensuring that data recording takes place smoothly.
LINXUP ELD has an average price of $149.99, which is equivalent to that of the ELD 50 from Rand McNally.
The proprietary tablet that comes with it costs $149.99 too, meaning the overall cost is about 300 dollars.
It is more costly than most ELD devices we have viewed above. There's a monthly plan that offers the fleets three options.
There are 3 options to choose from: there’s a $29.99 per month subscription plan which caters for the basic mandates, letting truckers share their working logs with enforcement officers.
Then they have a $39.99 monthly plan that provides GPS tracking services and additional fleet management resources, and there’s a $49.99 which offers all the previous features including IFTA automatic recording resources.
LINXUP is dedicated to delivering products that provide high security for the customers. Their integrated ELD and tracking services ensure that fleet managers can be able to track their resources and shipments accurately for increased security.
Integrated systems from LINXUP increase efficiency by minimizing the probability of driver-related errors in transmitting vehicle data while easing the responsibility of the drivers so that he/she can focus on more important work.
If your fleet transports high-risk or high-end goods, LINXUP is a great option.
Our 7th Pick: Magellan ELD
The Magellan company has its headquarters in San Dismas, CA, and offers a wide variety of fleet management services such as separated navigation systems and GPS displays.
Magellan has partnered with Samsung company to make integrated systems that look very similar to those of LINXUP.
Magellan's electronic logging device is accessed using a proprietary Samsung tablet. It works primarily the same manner in which LINXUP uses their own tablet to connect with their ELD systems.
However, the Magellan device has BYOD capabilities unlike LINXUP as long as the device being used by the driver is Samsung.
Features of Magellan
The setup process is speedy and smooth. Just plug the ELD dongle directly into your J-Bus or OBD II port. After installation, proceed to download the ELD HOS app and start accessing vital information.
You need to use a Samsung device to connect to the FMSCA-compliant eld. In addition to that, you can access your Magellan ELD via Bluetooth and USB.
Pricing and benefits
Just like other ELD providers, Magellan claims to offer the most affordable electronic logging device and software.
In their website, the device costs about $120 (or 150 dollars when DVIR and IFTA are included), which is cheaper than the devices mentioned earlier.
They do not charge a subscription fee for the 1st year of service. After this, the monthly fee needed is $10, which is lower than the $15 monthly charges of Stoneridge.
The $10 monthly service is inclusive of back-end fleet management software and compliance software for the driver.
The Magellan ELD is affordable and easy to use. It is an excellent device for fleet operators looking for a low-cost way to be compliant of the ELD mandate.
Our No. 8 : Omnitracs IVG
Overview of Omnitracs IVG
Available for $799, or if you prefer paying for it through monthly installments then $30 per month.
Omnitracs IVG, which stands for Intelligent Vehicle Gateway, is the leading ELD device in the market so far.
It’s super easy to install; there isn’t any hassle of having to connect a million cables to a million more.
It’s simple and yet gets the job done the best. Just a one device and one cable solution, that’s all there is to it.More pros of the product are listed below.
Decreased Installation Time & Stability
The IVG has a much better decreased installation time compared to some of the older MCP units.
The IVG requires some time to setup. However once once its all set up, you get a completely stable connection. It is much more sturdy as compared to the simple plug-and-play connections.
Advanced Features & Top Notch Technology
There are many advanced features to the IVG . Those features were added to IVG recently. Those features set the IVG apart from other ELDS that only have standard features. These advanced features include dash cams, in-cab scanning, and tire pressure monitoring.
The IVG sports New innovations. For example, drivers can stay connected to the ELD device and thereby continue working on some specific tasks even when they are away from their truck. This is done by connecting their phone to the device via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.
Voice Command System
The IVG has voice command system.It was added to the IVG recently. This feature is very helpful. This feature is helpful since many truckers don't like typing (very time consuming). Using this feature, the trucker can say many different commands.. It can do so without having to take their eyes or mind off the road.
Many systems feature a lot of features out of the box. However, the manufacture fails to provide timely updates. IVG by Omnitracs announced plans to turning the IVG into a personal hotspot too. They would do so that truckers always have access to WiFi.
Our 9th Choice: My20 ELD by Konexial
The price of My20 ELD is nearly the same as Stoneridge, with a few exceptions.
The price of the actual ELD is significantly lower—only $45, compared to the significantly higher cost of Stoneridge.
While Stoneridge offers one software subscription at $15 a month, which includes back-office fleet-management software, Konexial separates their service into two separate subscriptions.
The initial software cost is included for the first three months of service for the basic My20 package.
That means for the first three months of service, you pay only $45, and this includes the cost of the hardware itself.
Compared to the Stoneridge, you save at least $124 in the first three months—but that’s only in the basic subscription.
What’s Included with MY20 ELD Device?
The basic subscription to My20 includes driver-only software—this means the basic subscription meets all the necessary requirements and mandates set by FMCSA.
With the basic subscription, the driver can log their Hours of Service (HOS), share timesheets and data via email, print, upload, or Bluetooth.
They can share this information, along with other data collected from the Engine Control Module (ECM), with any law enforcement official or management group.
The My20 Tower package, by comparison, includes the full-package. This includes all the fleet-management software and resources currently available, such as live vehicle tracking and GPS, sharing of timesheets and other information through the data and app.
The My20 Savings Advantage
This package costs $75 quarterly (every three months), which includes the cost of the device for the first month.
At that rate, the difference in cost between Stonebridge and My20 for the first three months of full ELD and FMS is $139, with Stonebridge being slightly more expensive.
However, because Stoneridge and Konexial have different subscription prices. Annually, Stoneridge costs only $150, while Konexial costs $300 a year, a difference of $150—which actually leaves Stoneridge in the leave for cost-effectiveness, at least in the long-term.
Three years’ subscription with Stoneridge will save you a total of $311 over Konexial—and that’s just in subscriptions.
Hardware and Package Disadvantages
There’s a couple things that both Stoneridge and Garmin have that Konexial just doesn’t. My20 relies solely on your exterior devices Bluetooth abilities to relay and transmit information.
This means that the My20 does not have an exterior USB port. This seems like a significant oversite.
In the event that you need to share timesheet data and vehicle information with law enforcement, but your phone is dead or recently damaged, then sharing the data with the police officer would be a bit harder (but not impossible).
Whereas, both Garmin and Stoneridge give you backup solutions for sharing. Note that FMCSA does not require both Bluetooth and USB for data sharing—it’s just nice to know that some companies took the effort to include it anyways.
No Support for 6 Pin
My20 only provides support for standard 9-pin connectors, forcing you to either buy an adaptor from their site or from a third party. Garmin supports both 9 pin and 6 pin connections, but requires an adapter for 16 pin adapters.
Of the three, only Stoneridge’s EZ-ELD subscription includes adapters/support for 9, 6, and 16 pin connections, saving you more money in the long run—up to $90 dollars, depending on if you ever need to switch vehicle and take your ELD with you.
And of the three, only Stoneridge offers free monthly reporting (Garmin soon to follow) for IFTA and DIVR.
Last Choice : People Net Display.4
It can’t get any better than this. The Display.4 is hands down the best ELD there ever was.
But it comes with a huge hefty catch: a price tag of $1199. At such a staggering price, many shy away from buying it.
But still, the product has a huge customer base because of all the amazing features and quality it offers.
If you can afford it, this ELD device will be your dream come true. Below are some of the amazing benefits of PeopleNet Display.4
The company is one the oldest there are, and has been around since 1994. Since then, it has established itself as the leader in the market.
Their products are trusted by all, and never have they failed to live up to the great name.
Simple with a Low Failure Rate
Despite being such a huge company, the product itself is simple and easy to use. The menus are straightforward, the touch screen is easier to handle as compared to all other brands. The tablet has an all-time low failure rate.
Display.4 offers standard features along with a messaging function as well. However, the devices features many advanced features.
Those features are engine status monitoring and tire pressure check. In addition, the device aids the driver with keeping an eye on the fuel consumption. Finally,Speeding and safety alerts can also be set up.
The main advantage the PeopleNet platform has is diverse system configuration. Further, it allows you to match your entire fleet’s needs by using their system configuration.
Contract Vs No Contract ELD Options
When it comes to pricing eld manufactures tend to deceive drivers. Many advertise low monthly fees of $15 and $20 per month. However, when you look more into things, you find out that in order to quality for that price , you must sign up for long term contract. In addition, many charge hidden fees for other services such as ifta reporting ,etc. Other eld manufactures such as Garmin, will not have any monthly fees. However, the driver will be forced to put up the hefty initial investment of $250.
For my truck, i choose the garmin elog. For my second truck , i opted for the low monthly cost despite the initial cost in order to avoid the 3 year contract.
ELDs Do NOT Invade Your Privacy
For quite a while now, there was a great misconception about ELD devices. The rumor is that they invade the driver’s privacy. Rest assured that is not the case. There are many out there who think ELD devices will invade their privacy.
The reason is because it seems like its continuously tracking the location.
That is false assumption. The eld manufacturer does not know the current location of every driver.
ELDs track the driver's location. Yet, only fleet managers are able to view this information. Also, none of the ELD devices are always tracking your location.
It only starts tracking whenever the vehicle's engine is running.There is no way to store constant tracking --too much information.
Despite all of that, the FMCSA recognizes the drivers' concerns about their privacy. Therefore, it is implementing a privacy clause in the ELD mandate specially for this issue .
Our Final Take: Choose Wisely
This complete guide on ELD Devices includes a lot of information. We hope that this guide included all of the information you were looking for.
Now it’s up to you to make your choice and decide. Whichever one you decide on, will surely live up to its name and serve you well! If you are still not sure, fill out the form below and get a free consultation to assess your specific needs.