Buying an ELD? What to ask providers

The moment many in the transportation industry have been hoping would never come soft launched on December 18, 2017 and is all but guaranteed to go into full affect April 1, 2018.

For those who still have yet to purchase a device, when looking for an ELD:

1. Research

There are 180 devices listed on the FMCSA ELD registry. Some of these companies sprang up almost overnight, while others have been around for decades. Which companies have staying power? Is their business model strong enough to stay in business?

ASK: What is your end goal? If they cannot (or will not) answer, that’s a pretty good indication to look elsewhere.

2. Consider your needs

Do you want a system that can predict maintenance issues? How about IFTA? Do you just want hours of service reporting? Do you have rule set options that you run by such as agriculture, oil or water drilling? Do you need Canadian hours of service reporting? These are just a few of the dozens of questions that you can ask an ELD provider to find out if the system is right for you.

ASK: Can you do these things? If the answer is no, ask if they know who might be a good fit.

3. Pay attention to the technology an ELD vendor is using

Many of the vendors on the FMCSA registry are currently using 3G devices to send/receive information and triangulate a location. This means you will need to buy a newer device when that vendor upgrades their hardware as cell phone companies begin to shut down 3G towers sometime in 2018. A vendor using 4G technology will allow you to keep your hardware longer and not have to upgrade to a new and potentially costly piece of hardware.

ASK: Are you using 3G or 4G technology?

Save time and get your questions answered

Don’t run the risk of a major fine because you don’t have a device installed. Do your research and look for a device that works for you.

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