By Mary Motzko | October 15th, 2019 | | 0 Comments

When the FMCSA announced the rollout of the three phases of its electronic logging device mandate, fleet operations had years to prepare before all fleets had to be in full compliance. 

Now, that deadline for the third and final phase – full compliance -- is just months away. That means all fleets – even those who use AOBRDs – must start using ELDs by Dec. 16, 2019.

As your fleet transitions from an AOBRD to an ELD, find out the key differences between the two devices.

ELDs vs AOBRDS_with description


AOBRDs were created to meet FMCSA regulations that were set in the 1980s. This included the ability to comply with the Hours of Service (HOS) criteria by recording the engine use, speed, miles driven and dates and times by taking information directly from a vehicle’s engine. While this technology worked to meet those requirements, it was limited, and allowed operations to change the logs.


ELDs are meant to meet the current FMCSA regulations, allowing the devices to record more than driving time and speed. These devices record vehicle motion status, engine power status, duty status, the date and time, miles driven, locations covered, engine hours, and the identification of the driver, vehicle and motor carrier. They also allow drivers to log in and out and retrieve data if the unit malfunctions.

ELDs synchronize into a vehicle’s diagnostic port, making the data more accurate. These devices can eliminate tampering, as the information is recorded directly from the vehicle. They can also prevent unauthorized edits to the reports as the ELDs require drivers to approve electronic logs and any changes made by fleet personnel.

While the AOBRDs provided technology to comply with the regulations set in the 1980s, the ELDs are built to gather more information, prevent tampering and allow drivers to easily comply with the new HOS rules.

To learn how RTA Fleet Management Software can benefit your fleet operation, contact us today to schedule a demo.