Choosing the Right ELD Device for Your Trucking Business – A Comprehensive Guide

ELDs are used to transfer data regularly and to provide fleet managers with real-time visibility. They also support federal compliance by maintaining driver qualification records and displaying DOT inspection status.

Samsara stands out for its excellent compliance features and low monthly licensing fees (specifics are not publicly available). It has a one-year hardware warranty and 24/7 customer support.


Choosing an ELD device that will be reliable will help fleets avoid any problems with the FMCSA, especially when it comes to avoiding fines and penalties for non-compliant vehicles or drivers.

Most ELDs depend on cellular service or wifi hotspots to transmit data to a dashboard, which could be lost if those services are interrupted. Choosing a Bluetooth and GPS device can ensure fleet managers receive real-time data — even without a connection.

It is essential to choose an intuitive device that will allow drivers to update their status and complete vehicle inspection reports easily. A device with a complex interface can waste time, and fleets could be better used on other tasks. A simple, plug-and-play device can simplify the installation process and reduce the learning curve for drivers.


ELDs reduce paperwork for drivers and fleet managers, allowing them to spend less time on administrative tasks. They also help drivers keep track of HOS rules and avoid costly violations. They can even help with vehicle inspections and compliance reporting.

Advanced features include IFTA fuel tax calculation so fleets do not overpay in taxes, engine diagnostics for fuel efficiency, and integrations with artificial intelligence-powered dash cams to improve driver safety. These can all help lower fuel costs and liabilities while boosting productivity and CSA scores.

The ELD is a simple device that fulfills FMCSA regulations for a low price. It has a solid suite of features and offers 24/7 support. It does not come with contracts, which makes it a good option for seasonal fleets.


Choosing an ELD device that is easy to install and use for your fleet can significantly impact its adoption rate. A complicated installation process can frustrate drivers and impede their ability to comply with the FMCSA mandate.

Consider an ELD that requires no in-cab hardware, FMCSA-approved ELD device. Their plug-in solution automatically records driving data with a vehicle’s OBD port. This eliminates the need for drivers to enter data into a computer or tablet manually and is easier to manage than a paper logbook.

The system also offers real-time GPS tracking, whereas some competitors offer “breadcrumb” data that only ping every few minutes. This feature can help drivers avoid theft, reduce dispatch costs and provide customers with reliable ETAs. It can also enable fleets to track engine diagnostics and prevent breakdowns.


Many ELD devices rely on cell service or wifi hotspots to relay data back to the dashboard, which can be problematic. If there is no signal, fleet managers may not receive the data they need to keep their drivers safe and in compliance with FMCSA regulations.

Some ELD providers offer a variety of back-office tools that can help improve fleet operations and reduce costs. These include IFTA fuel tax calculations, integrations with artificial intelligence-powered dash cams for driver coaching, and vehicle maintenance checklists.

Some offer a simple, affordable ELD solution fully compatible with the FMCSA mandate. This system includes various features, including compliance tools and round-the-clock support for drivers. It also boasts a low monthly subscription fee and a limited lifetime warranty for its hardware units.


Depending on your chosen device, there may be a one-time hardware fee or monthly service fee. Make sure you know what these costs are before making your purchase.

Many ELD devices are compatible with most existing trucking software programs. However, finding one that integrates seamlessly and offers an open API so data can transfer quickly between software programs is best.

Others offer many features, including HOS compliance tools, CSA scores, and notifications. It also supports a variety of tractors and allows drivers to check traffic conditions, which will help them avoid violations and improve their ETAs. Its low hardware cost and monthly fees make it an affordable option for fleets of all sizes. It also comes with a one-year warranty on its hardware devices.