Individuals and companies are increasingly turning to GPS tracking devices for anti-theft purposes and to keep tabs on high-risk drivers, including newly licensed teens, the elderly, and fleet assets. The same location-based technology is essential for businesses with GPS fleet management applications such as routing, mileage tracking, and job costing. 


WestCoast GPS offers an economical and accurate way to secure and recover your assets. With our GPS tracking devices and smartphone App, you can set your device for movement alarms or set a GeoFence and receive an alert directly to your smartphone. Our devices come pre-programmed with a SIM card installed. All that’s required for you to do is to take it out of the box, place it on your asset, and start tracking.


Whether you want to monitor your business’s fleet or your teenage driver’s safety, you must conceal the device properly. To do this, it’s crucial to know where to hide a GPS tracker in a vehicle. This article explores how GPS tracking works, what to consider and the best places to hide a GPS tracker in a vehicle.


How Does GPS Tracking Work?

A GPS (global positioning system) is a device that sends real-time location data to your computer or mobile phone. Location is determined from information received from the satellites that is computed onboard the tracking device and/or in the cloud and then transmitted via cellular networks to your phone. 

What’s the Difference Between Active and Passive GPS Tracking Systems?

Active GPS tracking devices

Active GPS tracking devices provide real-time location updates. They work with cellphones and laptops. Most active tracking devices have the drawback of needing to be hardwired into the cars they track to have a consistent power supply.

Passive GPS tracking devices

A passive tracking device records many of your vehicle’s movements. It does not require cell service and consumes far less power than an active tracking device. Passive data can be shown as grid points. However, the user needs to collect the device and connect it to a computer to find out where the device has been.

What to Consider Before Hiding a GPS Tracker

When hiding your GPS tracker, the most critical consideration is signal strength. The gadget will not function if it does not receive an acceptable GPS satellite or cellular connection.

Most GPS signals go through plastic, fiberglass, foam, and glass, but not all solid objects; it’s best to give your GPS tracker a clear line of sight to the sky. The roof, dashboard, or windscreen are obvious alternatives, but whether you want your tracker visible or not is the main deciding factor. 

Where are the Best Places to Hide a GPS Tracker?


Below, we list the five best places to hide a GPS tracker on a car, truck, or property asset.

1. Inside the dashboard

If you can open panels or gain access from underneath, a great place to hide a GPS tracker is under the dashboard. It’s not easily found in this location, usually there is an available power source, and the device can still pick up satellite and cellular signals from there. This is the easiest spot to conceal the tracker since this space is often overlooked. A small, hardwired GPS tracker should be used to ensure that the tracker is safely hidden.


2. Front or Rear Bumper

A GPS tracker can quickly be concealed in the front or rear bumper since most people are unlikely to assume that a tracker is located inside the bumper. If you decide to hide the GPS tracker in the bumper, be careful not to scratch it or leave any signs of tampering. Magnets, adhesive, Velcro, etc. can be used to secure the tracker so that it doesn’t move and alert the driver. Battery powered devices such as the Yabby and the Oyster are better suited to this application


3. Attached to the vehicle’s underside

If you’ve purchased a magnetic GPS tracker, an easy spot to hide it is on the underside (or undercarriage). It will easily attach to the underbody or nearby metallic areas. However, use a protective housing to shield the tracker from water, dirt, or severe weather. Also, ensure it will not be easily dislodged by objects that may be encountered on the roadway. The downside is that the device may be visible especially when the vehicle is being maintained.


4. OBD-II port (On-Board Diagnostics II port)

The OBD-II port is a great option when easy installation is desired, however OBD-II ports are not always hidden away and using a device designed to plug into the port may interfere with the front occupants entering/exiting the vehicle. Splitter cables can be used so that the tracker can be placed under the dash while still being powered by the OBD-II port. We recommend using a splitter cable that allows mechanics to attach their diagnostic tools without having to unplug the splitter cable.


The Bolt2 is an excellent option for using the OBD-II port resulting in little, or no, installation costs.  


5. Engine Compartment

Placing the GPS tracker in the engine compartment requires some planning and only a ruggedized device should be used given the potential for heat, water, dust and other contaminants. The G70 is an ideal device for installing in the engine compartment. It can be powered directly from the battery and its ruggedized case is IP67 rated.


Tips to Remember When Hiding Your GPS Tracker


When hiding a GPS tracker in a vehicle, avoid placing it near the driver’s own GPS-equipped device, such as their cell phone. The GPS signals from two devices may clash and corrupt the data.


Do not hide your tracking device in hot spots. For instance, near the vehicle’s exhaust, on the dash in direct sunlight, near the engine, etc. since it may melt, dissolve, or break down. 


Before finalizing a location for your tracking device make sure you test it out to ensure it is receiving satellite and cellular signals and try not to place it in areas people may access frequently such as between the seats, in the glove box, etc. .



GPS Tracking Available in North Vancouver, BC


WestCoastGPS has vehicle-tracking solutions for all types and sizes of businesses. We are a wholly owned Canadian company and work closely with our customers to help determine exactly what they need and to find the best system for their budget. 


We offer simple solutions for protecting your assets. Our range of devices and software solutions delivers the optimum solution at the right price. Tell us what you require, and we will, in turn, let you know how we can help increase productivity and reduce costs for your fleet.


If you’d like to learn more about how WestCoastGPS can help boost productivity, improve safety, and decrease costs for your business, speak with one of our knowledgeable advisors at 778-980-6105 or request a quote today.