Best gps for truckers ???

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Adrian _95, Apr 20, 2024.

  1. Adrian _95

    Adrian _95 Bobtail Member

    Dec 14, 2023
    Louisville KY
    Need a little advice on which gps to buy.
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  3. Concorde

    Concorde Road Train Member

    Jun 29, 2016
    West Melbourne Florida
    I’ve only ever had Garmin’s and imo they’ve gone downhill the last few years. Alerts are no longer accurate and routing is laughable at best.
    Whichever one you get you’re going to have to be a little smarter than the device…don’t just follow it blindly or it’ll put you in a world of hurt.
  4. 2Tap

    2Tap Medium Load Member

    Jul 19, 2022
    Southern Wisconsin
    You'll still need 4g / 5g or Wifi for when Garmin doesn't know your destination. Then Google maps, drop a pin, receive gps coordinates, plug those coordinates into your truck gps = Win

    Trust Google solely to safely help navigate your truck = Fail on you!
  5. dave01282000

    dave01282000 Medium Load Member

    Jun 16, 2021
    This. Do NOT rely on a GPS to tell you which way to go.

    Never used RM but the Garmin routing often makes no sense and will try to send you down roads you really don't want to go down. It will generally verify that you're clear of low bridges and "no trucks" roads and is a good tool for situational awareness (miles to destination, road orientation etc) but as far as routing it is best used to verify what you already trip planned.
  6. 50WT

    50WT Heavy Load Member

    Dec 26, 2015
    I've never used Garmin but RM isn't much better then what everyone else is saying about Garmin. Definitely check your route with a atlas and Google earth maps. I've had good luck with the RM units lasting, I'm on my second unit in the last 14 years. They could be a little better with updates also.
  7. Ex-Trucker Alex

    Ex-Trucker Alex Heavy Load Member

    Jan 7, 2023
    Well, free GPS apps like Google or Waze can be used, but only if you also use your brain. Where Google Maps or Waze often fail is in the last bits AFTER you leave the big highway. Calling the shipper/receiver for local directions is usually your best bet. You can still keep your Waze/GM open, and if even your local directions aren't correct at least you have a layout of all the local roads. App programs are wrong more often than local shippers/receivers are...

    There was a story a few years back about some clueless people in a rental car in Colorado who were looking for the shortest route from Vail to Denver, and Waze sent them up an unpaved Jeep trail at over 10,000' elevation in the spring!
  8. Espressolane

    Espressolane Road Train Member

    Nov 21, 2009
    Just south of the north 40
    Garmin is your best bet. Second would be TomTom if you can find them. Make sure it is a truck unit. That would be a Dezl for Garmin, can’t remember the name for the TomTom units. For the most part, the routes are reasonably good. If you’re getting strange routes, it is probably a settings problem. For a Garmin, the settings are important, so make sure you set it up right from the start.
    GPS units are a tool, that’s all. They help you plan. Find distance to things like estimating your eta to location or a wanted service, like fuel or parking.
  9. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

    I used my Rand McNally RM740 fir 5 years, mostly happy with it. I think the 750 model is currently sold. Those are 7 inch models so cost is about $400 or so. You can save $150-ish by getting a 540 or 550 5 inch model. There are more mounting options for the smaller units amd a lot of the info when driving is spoken not just looking at the screen, so scree size is less important than you would first think. DO NOT USE A CAR GPS unless your vehicle is no taller than a car. Truck GPS have better truck routing info. Car GPS has no truck routing info or almost none. Tickets for trucks on truck restricted routes can be expensive, more than the cost of a GPS. RM units are not super durable so you need to be gentle with them or the break. Also, don't leave them plugged into power during 10 hour breaks or off time. It causes battery to die sooner if it charges 24/7/365. Keep out of sun or shade it to keep heat down. I pampered mine like a new baby and just got 5 years out of it. Garmins are more durable, last I checked.
    lane674, SoulScream84 and dave01282000 Thank this.
  10. Ex-Trucker Alex

    Ex-Trucker Alex Heavy Load Member

    Jan 7, 2023
    Good analogy. Waze and Google maps are like the Harbor Freight tools, and Garmin and TomTom are like the Snap-On version; both will do the job, but how much will you be using them and how much are you willing to pay?
    SoulScream84 and dave01282000 Thank this.
  11. 86scotty

    86scotty Road Train Member

    Aug 27, 2017
    SmartTruckRoute on a Samsung tablet has been seriving me well for about 5 years.

    $59/yr IIRC?
    SoulScream84 and dave01282000 Thank this.
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