Battery Powered GPS Asset Tracker Installation Guide

This is part of a series of installation guides for installing GPS Tracking Devices in your cars or trucks or in your assets.
OBD-II Vehicle Tracker Installation Guide | Hardwired Vehicle Tracker Installation | Battery Powered GPS Tracker Installation Guide

Battery Powered GPS Asset Tracker: Install Guide Intro

This is a guide for installing a battery powered GPS Asset Tracker on your equipment. If you came across this page as you were looking to install a wired gps tracking device in your vehicle, this isn’t the page for you – but we’ve got you covered over here: GPS Vehicle Tracker Installation Guide.

This focus of this guide is on the installation / use of battery powered gps trackers like the GL505N. This family of GPS trackers are completely self powered by replaceable internal batteries. This guide will review installation and battery replacement. These are great trackers for all kinds of equipment from trailers, cargo containers, job-site construction storage and other equipment that doesn’t have its own power source.

Turn On Tracking Device

To ensure safe shipping and to comply with regulations, the battery pack will be installed in this device, but it will be turned OFF. In order to use this device, the unit must be turned ON.

  1. Remove the screw at each corner on the bottom of the device.
  2. Insert a small flat-blade screwdriver in the slot and gently remove the lid.
  3. Carefully separate the inner shell from the outer shell making 3. sure not to disturb the O-ring.
  4. Slide the On/Off switch toward the battery leads
  5. The unit will power up. Check that the LEDs on the inside of the device next to the batteries turn on. Refer to the table below to make sure the device is reporting properly. Please note: the LED lights will automatically turn off after a few minutes.
  6. Place the two halves of the housing together with the O-ring properly seated in between.
  7. Hand tighten the screws. Do not use a power tool.
  8. Remount the device according to the instructions in Step 2.

Replacing the Tracking Device Batteries

If the batteries are replaceable, the following steps may be followed:

  1. Follow steps 1-3 above.
  2. Slide On/Off switch to the Off position.
  3. Unplug the old battery pack and replace it with the new one.
  4. Slide the On/Off switch to the On position.
  5. Follow steps 5-8.

GPS Tracking Device LED Status Lights


Mounting Guide for the Asset Tracker

Mounting Location

Since the GPS satellites beam location information to the device, it needs to have a view of the sky. The GPS signal can penetrate glass, plastic, and wood, but not metal. Ideally, the label side of the tracking device should face the sky. Here are some suggested locations:

  • Best – Behind a plastic barrier and or glass, shielded from the weather and hidden from view.
  • Better – Mounted in an open area with direct access to the sky. It can be mounted either vertically or horizontally on the equipment.
  • Good – The underside of an all metal piece of equipment where it can get reflected GPS signals from the ground, but is protected from impact or damage.

Interior Mounting

If the device is to be mounted inside the enclosed cab of machinery or a vehicle, there are a couple of mounting options

  • Double-side tape – Adhere tape to the bottom of the device and secure it to a clean, flat surface. Remember, the label side of the GPS tracker needs to see the sky.
  • Zip Ties – these can be used to hold the tracking device in place inside machinery or a vehicle. This is not recommended for exterior mounting applications. One zip tie can be placed through the two mounting holes on the ends of the device. Be sure to attach the device to a solid, non-movable substrate in order that it does not get jostled during operation of the host vehicle.

Exterior Mounting

Placing the unit on the exterior of equipment will require mounting hardware (not included).

  • Thru-Bolt – Use #10 Stainless Steel bolts of sufficient length and nylon locking nuts.
  • Screws – Use #10 Stainless Steel self-tapping hex head screws.
  • Adhesive – In certain circumstances where hardware cannot be used, careful application of a synthetic polyurethane adhesive, such as 3M Marine 5200, may be used. Be extremely careful not to use too much because it could make it difficult to remove the device when it comes time to replace the batteries, resulting in damage to the unit. Steps to mount the device with adhesive:
    1. Clean area where device is to be mounted. Make sure to remove all dirt and grease.
    2. Attached a small 1” section of double-sided tape to the bottom center of the device.
    3. Apply a 3/16” bead of adhesive on the outer tabs where the two mounting holes are located on each end of the device. Be sure not to get the adhesive on the seam where the top of the housing meets with the bottom portion.
    4. Press the device down on the previously prepared substrate with only enough pressure to cause the double-sided tape to stick. The sole purpose of the tape is to hold the device in place while the adhesive cures. The curing process can take up to 24 hours.
    5. To remove a device that has been mounted with an adhesive, obtain a 24” piece of piano wire or other small gauge wire and a pair of leather gloves. Using a back and forth sawing motion, slide the wire underneath the device while cutting through the adhesive and double-sided tape.