Every Day, I get asked, which devices are the best eld devices for truckers? What are the top e logs for owner operators? Is there any owner operator eld exemption?
For starters, lets agree that the best device might be different for every trucker and every owner operator.
I am sure that if you’re looking to purchase an ELD devices for your fleet, you are already aware of the eld mandate.
Even thought some truckers have not installed yet an ELD Device on their trucks, the mandate it is enforced, and to be honest, there are advantages on having it installed.
However, do you know what are you looking for features-wise? Do you know whats the price range for such device? If there is any owner operator eld exemption?
Indeed there are some owner operator eld exemption that you can check in our article “ELD Exemptions“ updated in 2019, but overall it is most likely that you must comply with the Mandate.
It may seem overwhelming, however, when you begin to research the multitude of options available and the pros an cons of each e logs for owner operators.
We made a list of the most widely used elogs before. However, in this article, we will go a step further.
In other words, we are going to review the best devices for owner operators.
Affordability is Key
Of course, you’ll want to ensure they device is affordable and worth the sticker price, and you’ll need to consider whether there are other hidden fees.
Some devices are available for a one-time fee, and others include monthly service fees and other hidden costs.
Reliability Perhaps is More Important
Product-wise, there are some devices that are reportedly more reliable than others, and some brands have stood the test of time, while others are new to the market.
Sometimes it can be worth paying for a brand’s reputation, but that isn’t always the case. Newer to market products may prove to be just as reliable at the end of the day.
You don’t want to sink your funds into a product that doesn’t work as expected, that disconnect often or glitches. You also wouldn’t want to overpay for features that you can find in a comparable device for less.
You’ll want to ensure the e-log is easy to install and use, and that drivers and owner operators can quickly learn to operate features, so they can begin to use them immediately. Technical support is important should they encounter unforeseen issues while on the road. You’ll want to be able to quickly troubleshoot and get back to business.
Which device you choose to go with is important mainly because ELD tracking is an essential part of your company’s operation. Staying in compliance with the latest federally mandated regulations means staying on the road.
E-logs for owner operators and Return on Investment (ROI)
Using an ELD device (or truck tracker) will help calculate or weigh cost against the savings and increased productivity you can gain with different ELDs.
Since you need an ELD to meet the HOS requirements, you'll need software that integrates with software features such as vehicle monitoring, two-way communication, improved routing and much more.
Top E Logs For Owner Operators
|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|
|Magellan ELD||$120||$10||Installation is simple and quick|
|Omnitracs ELD||$800||$23||robust functionality|
|Konexial ELD||$45||$300 (annual license)||includes all the fleet-management software|
|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|
|J.J. Keller ELD||$199||$6||drivers can use their own smart devices|
|EROAD Ehubo ELD||$35||$35 to $60||Durable and easy to use|
|Switchboard ELD||$200||$10||smooth, user-friendly ELD|
|Verizon ELD||-||$60||Accurate HOS recording|
|BrigdeHaul ELD||$0||$15||One of the cheapest in the market with no upfront fees|
|FREE Zonar 2020||$0||$70||scan each of these RFID tags|
|VDO RoadLog Plus||$299||$20||Automatic logs auditing|
|Blue Tree Systems ELD||$1000||$40||HOS coaching|
|Carrierweb ELD||$700||$30||Easy to install|
|AT&T ELD||$0||$25||Auto Update of Duty Status|
|TRANSFLO ELD||$99||$25||Easy to install and use|
|Coretex DRIVE||$350||$46||TMU In-Vehicle Hardware|
1st Choice: KeepTruckin ELD Device
Check our Keep Truckin ELD full review for further information.
2nd Choice: Garmin eLog ELD Device
Check our Garmin ELD full review for more info.
3rd Choice: My20 ELD Device
4th Choice: GPSit1000BZL LTE Vehicle Tracking Device
5th Choice: ZED Connect ZED - ELD
6th Choice: Rand McNally ELD 50® E-Log Device
Check our Rand McNally e-Log review.
7th Choice: ThinAir ELD Device
8th Choice: J.J. KELLER Encompass ELog Electronic Logging Device
Check our J.J. Keller ELD review.
9th Choice: Stoneridge EZ-ELD Device
Check our full Stoneridge EZ-ELD review.
10th Choice: Omnitracs Intelligent Vehicle Gateway (IVG)
Check our full Omnitracs ELD review.
Buyer’s Guide: Important Factors When Choosing an ELD Device
When purchasing ELD devices for your fleet, there are many important aspects to consider when you chose e logs for owner operators. You’ll want to ensure the product is within your budget and has the features you desire
You’ll also want to make sure the device is relatively easy to install and use.
In addition, you will want t make sure your drivers can quickly learn the ropes, so they’ll remain on the road and in compliance at all times.
You’ll need to purchase an e log that complies will all current industry standards and regulations for owner operators.
This is vary important since many legacy products (such as onboard devices) will not fulfil current mandates.
It is paramount to select a device that is up-to-date with all federal regulations. Some products include warranties and manufacturer guarantees so that users (the drivers) can be sure the product will remain in compliance as updates are needed.
Should your drivers encounter technical issues while on the road, you’ll want to make sure the ELD device comes with 24/7 guided support. This is super important. The customer service team should troubleshoot the issue in a timely manner so your trucks can get back on the road.
Limited or no technical support will mean wasted time attempting to manually log drive time. Because drivers are required to keep track of their time on the road, manual logging is necessary if the device fails.
You’ll need a device that connects seamlessly and stays connected. You don’t want to have to fuss with one that disconnects frequently or loses data. You also don’t want to worry about it capturing inaccurate information which you may or may not be able to overwrite depending on its features.
Information Storage On Device
You want to purchase an e-logger that stores an adequate amount of relevant data for a prolonged period of time. This way, the device won’t overwrite data that could still be needed or stop logging because it reached maximum capacity.
You'd want to be able to access all needed information quickly and easily, so you can keep up with your reporting procedures.
You may want to look at an ELD with the most robust back office features. This way you can analyze a multitude of reports and keep track of your team. You’ll want to be able to print these reports and share them as necessary.
Choose the best features of e-logs for owner operators
Some devices come with advanced features that others don’t. Again, you will want to select the features that are meaningful to you.
Pricing should be a primary consideration. You don’t want to overpay for features that are available on comparable, lower cost devices. Some can be purchased for a one-time, out the door fee. Others require an activation fee and monthly subscription fees. Some come with warranties, and others require you to purchase these separately, if available.
Be sure to account for any miscellaneous hardware that may be required and needs to be added a la carte.
The ELD device you select should be compatible with the equipment installed in your trucks. Occasionally, an adapter and cord will need to be purchased separately in order for the device to work with your vehicles. Read the fine print to determine if you’ll need additional hardware in order to complete installation.
You’ll want to take some time and do some thorough research, so you know you’re buying a product that is compatible with the devices you will be pairing with the e-logger. If your fleet used Android devices, you’ll need to purchase ones that will work with this operating system. You’ll also want to ensure the e-loggers work with the device models your drivers are using.
Some of the newer devices will not pair properly with older operating systems. You wouldn’t want to have to replace all of the drivers’ devices along with the product you chose before they’re able to get on the road.
If you are not sure which system is better for you, you can get free expert advice by filling out the form below.
Check the policies!
Lastly, you’ll want to see if the company you’re purchasing from has a return policy on their ELD products should you encounter unsolvable issues or inadvertently discover the e-logger doesn’t pair well with your vehicles or devices. You don’t want to be left hanging on to a product that is unusable.
Again, some products also come with a one- or two-year service warranty, which may be included in the initial purchase price or may require an additional fee.
If the product you are considering comes with a warranty, make sure you understand what is included. Sometimes you’ll be able to get a basic warranty with your initial purchase and will need to buy an extended warranty that is more comprehensive.
Some brand names have stood the test of time, and others are newer to the market. Sometimes the reputation of the longer-standing brand warrants a higher purchase price. But, this isn’t always the case. There are many newer to market brands that include comparable features at a lower fee simply because the brand is still building its reputation.
Take the size of your operation, the number of trucks you have on the road, and overall distance traveled into consideration, as well as the information you’ll need your drivers to capture and your budget for ELD expenses. Above all, purchase the product that works best for your individual company’s needs and that will allow you to stay in compliance.
Conclusion for e logs for owner operators
There are pros and cons to each ELD device on the market. The key is choosing one e logs for owner operators that feeds your needs and cover eld exemption. Some work great for smaller fleets but aren’t equipped for larger ones. Others work well for all sizes.
You’ll want to make a purchasing decision based on price and available features. The product should be easy to install and operate and come with competent, readily available customer support should a driver encounter technical issues. The key is to get drivers up and running quickly and keep them on the road.
Some products come with warranties, otherwise don’t. Some are easy to return, and others can’t be returned at all. Always read the fine print and ensure you’re covered should you encounter an issue that isn’t easy to resolve.
Do your research first, comparing and contrasting models to find the best fit. This guide is designed help you make an informed decision. At the end of the day, you’ll know what you need from your ELD device!