Where do you install GPS trackers in a vehicle?

Types of GPS trackers

There are many types of GPS trackers for vehicles including battery-powered and those that get their power from the vehicle’s battery system. We will focus on two different types of GPS trackers that are powered by the vehicle: hardwired and OBD devices.

Hardwired – is the type of GPS tracker that requires it to be connected to your vehicle’s battery.


  • Secure and concealed installation
  • Professional installers will leave a tamper seal
  • Additional data & features e.g. remotely engage/turn off the  engine


  • Lengthy and more complex installation: leads to vehicle downtime
  • Potential extra costs for professional installation
  • Difficult to transfer trackers between vehicles

OBD – is the type of GPS device that is connected to your vehicle’s electronic control unit (ECU) via the OBD port. It is often referred to as a plug-and-play device due to its simplicity and ease of installation.


  • Easily self-installed within minutes with minimal vehicle downtime (no additional installation costs)
  • Easily transferred between vehicles
  • Receive engine data and diagnostics information directly  from the OBD port.


  • Can be easily removed or potentially dislodged accidentally 
  • Due to the lack of external ports it is not possible to add additional vehicle monitoring other than what is preset.

Both device types have their pros and cons however OBD GPS tracking devices are ideal for fleet tracking and monitoring or light to medium duty vehicles.

How to install GPS trackers

Hardwired GPS trackers require a 3-wire installation and is typically installed behind the dashboard. Depending on installation requirements, professional installation may be necessary. 

OBD GPS tracker installation is easy and straightforward:

  1. Find your vehicle’s OBD port which is usually located underneath the dashboard near the steering wheel
  2. Plug the OBD device into the OBD port
  3. If you don’t already have an account create your account for your fleet management platform
  4. Add your device serial number to your account
  5. Start driving and collecting data! 


Where do you install gps trackers in a vehicle? Autocavo


Why use autocavo’s GPS tracking and fleet management solution?

autocavo uses a tiny, yet powerful OBD GPS tracking device to power its flagship product autocavoFleet: a fleet management and GPS tracking solution ideal for any sized fleet. Gain visibility, control, and actionable insights for vehicle health, maintenance, and driver behavior and maximize your fleet’s utilization. 

With autocavoFleet you can:

  • View vehicle location  on a map in real-time
  • See vehicle activity, route history, and driver locations
  • Customize alerts for driver behavior, geofencing, DTCs, and maintenance
  • Manage maintenance
  • Monitor fuel consumption
  • Monitor vehicle utilization
  • Receive information on MPG and engine runtime


These and many more features are available for as low as $9.99/month per vehicle, no contract required.  Get started in three easy steps

  • Buy your device and subscription online
  • Create your autocavoFleet  account
  • Add your device to your account
  • Install your device in your vehicle
  • Take one to two trips of at least a mile.