Does U-Haul Use GPS Tracking? (Checked & Explained)

U-Haul has a huge presence in the truck and trailer rental space to help people move their belongings from one place to the other. As such, it would be in their best interest to keep track of their vehicles.

A GPS tracker is one of the most effective pieces of equipment to monitor a vehicle’s movement. This is why rental companies and personal cars use it to curb vehicle theft.

In this article, we’ll be looking into whether U-Haul uses GPS tracking or not. This is especially important if you’re looking into renting a U-Haul vehicle or equipment.

We have an article here listing where GPS trackers are hidden on cars.

Does U-Haul Generally Use GPS to Track Their Trucks?

Some U-Haul trucks and equipment use a GPS tracking device, while others do not. This depends on the location of the U-Haul center or branch.

In most cases, you’ll find that the U-Haul truck does not have a GPS tracking device installed. When the device is installed, it allows the company to track the vehicle.

This is important because sometimes customers will forget the date to return the vehicle. When this happens, the rental company can then try to contact the customer to return the vehicle.

Sometimes, you’ll find that the U-Haul center cannot get a hold of the customer in order to have the vehicle returned. This then prompts the company to ping the location of the vehicle.

Doing this lets the rental company know whether the vehicle is being used where the customer said.

When the customer has not returned the vehicle in time, then a representative will be sent out to the location of the vehicle.
It will be more to remind the customer that the vehicle needs to be returned to their nearest branch.

Are U-Haul Trucks Tracked With GPS?

Most U-Haul trucks and equipment are not tracked using GPS or any other tracking methods. You can find out from the branch or center if the truck you’re renting has a tracking device.

Many people may opt for the GPS tracker in order to have peace of mind that the vehicle is being tracked. However, some people may feel uncomfortable knowing that their every move is being tracked.

U-Haul centers that do have GPS tracking devices installed are usually in areas where there is a lot of vehicle theft. The GPS device is a good way to keep track of the vehicle in case it is stolen.

In the unfortunate case that the U-Haul truck is stolen, the GPS device will come in handy. The company can then trace the vehicle before calling the authorities to help recover it.

With that said, it is important to note that it is rare that a U-Haul truck or trailer is stolen. The GPS device that is installed is more of a precaution.

Are U-Haul Trailers Tracked With GPS?

Tracking devices like GPS are not used for tracking U-Haul trailers. You’ll need to provide your own GPS and navigation system if your trip requires it.

One reason U-Haul trailers do not have GPS devices is that they are usually really difficult to steal. However, whether or not there is a GPS tracking device installed depends on the center.

Another point to mention is that it depends on whether the trailer will be rented for out-of-state use. The company may give you a trailer with a GPS installed if you’ll be using it out of state.

Not installing a GPS tracking device on a trailer is not a universal practice. Independent rentals company like to install tracking devices on their equipment in order to minimize theft.

With U-Haul, they usually have much cheaper alternatives that replace the use of a tracking device. It can vary from using your smartphone as a tracking device or using their revolutionary U-Haul Truck Share 24/7.

In order to have peace of mind that your valuables are protected, most people opt for their own GPS equipment. This is convenient because most trailers will not have any tracking included.

Where Are GPS Trackers Placed On A U-Haul?

Even though most U-Haul trucks do not have tracking devices, the engine bay is the common location to hide the GPS device. If the device is not included in the U-Haul truck or trailer, it is best to have your own device installed.

The engine bay area is the most common location to hide a GPS device to make it difficult to reach. Other hiding areas are just behind the dashboard or under your seat or under the floor.

Positioning the tracking device in an unreachable area prevents thieves from reaching and tampering with it.

How Do You Know If a Truck Has a GPS Tracker?

If you can’t see the GPS device in the usual location, such as the engine bay or dashboard, the rental likely does not have it. Another location would be under the front seats or under the floor of the truck.

Another way to know if your U-Haul truck has a GPS tracker is to read the rental agreement. The rental agreement will likely stipulate whether the truck has some kind of tracker installed.

Rental agreements also let you know what and how you’ll pay for the rental truck or trailer. They’ll also let you know if a GPS unit is installed and other fees such as insurance and mileage.

Usually, you’ll find that trucks and trailers that do not have GPS units likely have higher insurance packages on them. This allows the company to retrieve its money in the case of theft or damage.

It is always a good idea to read over the rental agreement to make sure you’re getting what you’re paying for.

It gets difficult to dispute the rental agreement once you’ve taken possession of the truck or trailer.

Related: What Does U-Haul Charge For? (12 Things Checked)

Is There An App to Detect a GPS Tracker?

Apps such as “Tracker Detect” can detect GPS units such as “AirTag” or other tracking devices. However, it’s difficult to detect a traditional GPS unit installed in a U-Haul truck or trailer.

Apps that can detect GPS units are able to do so by detecting GPS signals from the device. This is because a GPS device emits and receives GPS signals to and from a satellite.

By detecting signals that are emitted by the device, the app can then locate where the device is hidden. The closer the smartphone is to the device, the stronger the signal will be.

GPS detection apps are usually available for both Apple and Android smartphones in their relative app stores. There are usually paid and free versions of GPS detection apps that you can use.

Related: Are U-Haul Trucks Waterproof? (Checked & Explained)

Can You Block GPS Tracking on a Truck?

GPS signals can be blocked by trees, aluminum foil, mountains, and tunnel. However, there are also GPS blocking devices that can be used to block GPS signals to and from the truck or trailer.

A GPS blocking device works by interfering with the signal from the GPS device. These are usually portable plug-in devices that can be plugged into the car’s cigarette lighter.

Materials like aluminum foil or trees are usually hard for a GPS signal to get through. With that said, it also depends on the strength of the signal emitted by the GPS device.

Moreover, it is important to get a GPS device that is tried and trusted. Quality equipment will perform better while sending and receiving GPS signals.

GPS blocking devices will not work on each and every U-Haul truck out there. Having said that, it is best to refrain from using GPS blocking devices, as it is often illegal to do so.

Related: U- Haul Cargo Vans: 14 Facts You Should Know (Explained)

Do U-Haul Trucks Use AirTags?

U-Haul trucks and trailers do not use AirTags for vehicle tracking and as GPS devices. However, it is recommended to use your own AirTag device for added security on the rented U-Haul truck or trailer.

AirTag devices are usually cheaper alternative tracking devices to the traditional GPS units installed on rented vehicles. They can be used together with a compatible smartphone or computer and are easy to set up.

Another benefit of an AirTag device is that it is small and easy to hide in the rental truck. A great hiding place for such devices is usually where there is not a lot of heat.

With that said, an AirTag cannot be installed in the engine bay area because of the heat from the engine. The plastic material can melt from the heat and become unusable as a tracking device.

There are a number of brands to choose from that can work just as well as an AirTag for vehicle tracking. Choosing the right device will give you peace of mind that the rental truck or trailer is protected during use.

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