Author: Justin Schmid
How Much Does ELD Cost?
The ELD Mandate is upon us, and millions of fleet vehicles are required to purchase an Electronic Logging Device. The first question for fleet managers and owners is, “how much does ELD cost?”
Ongoing ELD Costs
The FMCSA, the division of the U.S. Department of Transportation that requires the ELD Mandate, commissioned a study to gauge the impact the mandate would have on fleets nationwide.
According to the study, the FMCSA estimates the cost of an ELD is $495 per year or about $41.25 per month per truck. ELD vendors in the study ranged in cost from $165 to $832 per year. The GPS Insight solution starts at $29.95 per month, per truck.
FMCSA estimates new ELD prices at around $1,000, but thankfully many vendors have dropped significantly since that study. (GPS Insight startup costs are around half that.) Some vendors have options to pay all upfront, finance over time, or rent the ELD devices.
- Hardware: You can choose vehicle-installed ELDs provided by your vendor or Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) as a hardware option to track Hours of Service (HOS). There are pros and cons to either option. Most importantly, you must ensure whichever option you choose will make your fleet compliant with the regulations.
- Installation: If you’re hard-wiring components to your vehicle, make sure you select a vendor that has access to a network of professional installers that are experienced in ELD installations. With the ELD Mandate’s deadline, Dec. 16, 2019, quickly approaching, professional installers are getting booked up fast. It’s recommended not to wait until the last minute due to the volume and demand for ELD installations. If your fleet is not equipped by the compliance date, fines will likely occur.
- Training: Set aside time for your drivers to learn how to use the E-logs. It’s regulated that ELD vendors provide a manual as a resource for drivers. To go a step further, a good vendor will include additional training resources at no additional charge.
The Good News
It’s never fun being forced to pay more by regulations. The good news is that most fleets realize a significant ROI from implementing ELD that works in conjunction with a Telematics solution. In the FMCSA study, a reduction in the time drivers spent filling out paper logs more than paid for Electronic Logging Device costs alone.
Make the Most of the Mandate
After finding out if you’re required to comply and looking into costs, the next step is to choose an ELD solution.
With the same minimum equipment that is required to comply with the ELD Mandate, you can also select a vendor that has many more bells and whistles at little or no additional cost.
In addition to electronic logging and DVIR, some ELD solutions include GPS tracking, navigation, and driver messaging features.
These features can greatly improve your fleet management and can multiply your ROI. If you’re required to buy the equipment anyway, choosing the right partner might make getting ELD a positive experience after all.
Engage your fleet with GPS Insight.