You are currently viewing Best GPS Tracker for Tool Box

Best GPS Tracker for Tool Box

Last Updated: Jun 30, 2022

You might have hundreds or even thousands of dollars worth of tools in your tool box.

It only makes sense to have a tracker inside the toolbox in case it is stolen or lost.

A real-time GPS tracker gives you all of this, as well as geo-zone, motion alerts.

You can get an alert when your tool box has left a certain area.

In this article, I’ll discuss the different GPS trackers for tool boxes, the costs, and their performance.

The Metal Tool Box Test

I took the best 4 GPS trackers on the market and put them to the test alongside an iPhone.

The test was how well they would track inside an all-metal toolbox. Now what this does is basically render the GPS part of the tracker useless because it blocks the GPS satellite signals.

So, the tracker would have to figure out where it was without the GPS information. Also, the metal box will block or attenuate (reduce) the cell phone signal quite a bit.

That means the tracker would need to be able to switch to lower frequency channels to try and transmit the signal.

GPS Trackers & iPhone in a Metal Tool Box

After charging all the trackers, I set them outside to make sure they pulled down the GPS data they need.

Then I drove many miles with the metal tool box lid closed and put the box in the trunk and front-seat part of the trip.

I then watched each tracker on their mobile app.

This scenario might seem extreme, but if someone is going to steal your tools, they are going to put them in the trunk.

For the phone tracker, I installed our Trakkit app and then Shared it to my phone so I could watch it from one screen.

gps tracker for tool box and app
GPS Tool Box Test iPhone results

The test results for the iPhone with Trakkit app are shown above. Since the iPhone uses cell approximation, the location points are estimated.

But you can see that it is quite good and you are able to track and find the location.

The other trackers reported nothing since they are dependent on a GPS signal, since the metal box blocked them, they were not able to approximate the location.

*Keep in mind, when you are using a GPS tracker in your tool box or anywhere else, if the tracker is having a hard time getting the Cellular or GPS signal, it will work harder and deplete its battery very quickly.

BrandPriceMonthly CostWorks in
Cars
Works in
Trucks
Works in
Metal Box
Battery Life*Can be HardwiredGPS Recording
No Subscription
LandAirSea$28$2013 days
Tracki$18$203 days
Trak-4$48$1912 days
Spytec$21$3010 days
PhoneFree or Used($$)*$53-5 days

*Price of the phone assumes free if you already have one, or can be purchased used.
*The battery life was tested driving 1 hour every day.
*GPS Recording is tested without a subscription or SIM card, but GPS signal needed.
*Phone tested using an iPhone, with a $5 data plan


Best GPS Trackers for Tool Box with Reviews:

Spytec GPS GL300 Real-Time GPS Tracker

spytec gps trailer trackerPower Source: Battery or Mini-USB
Battery Life: up to 10 days
SIM Card: Yes, built-in
Data Updates: 5 minutes
Monthly Fee: $30
Operating Temperature: -40 to 140°F
Waterproof: No
Mobile & Desktop App: Both, Free
Dimensions: 3.5 x 1.42 x 1.23 inches

Check Price

Setup & Install Experience:
Following the setup instructions, we were able to activate the Spytec tracker. After installing the app, a

We immediately switched out the alkaline batteries with Energizer lithiums as they are much better in extreme temperatures for electronics. If you are going to use Spytec in a very cold environment (< 32F), be sure to switch the batteries.

Also, note that battery life depends on the amount you move your toolbox around as all these trackers are motion activated.

Pros

  • Easy Setup;
  • Alerts when loses connection;
  • Unlimited data storage;
  • 3 Year warranty;
  • Text and Email alerts included;
  • 1 Year Battery life;

Cons

  • High monthly subscription;

Performance & Overall Experience:
The spytec works great, but we changed the default reporting from 1 hour to 15 minutes. Once per hour is too long.

We set up alerts for when the geo zone was out of range and got the emails as expected. The alert was set for loss of internet connection and that worked also. Take note that if the power goes your wifi router also goes out, this will send the loss of communication alert.

Multiple people can get the same alert, this is good as a backup when one is not enough.

With all of those amazing features, you’ll rest easy knowing that, if something happens to take your toolbox you’ll have a much better chance of recovering it from a possible disaster.

This tracker does have an optional external power cable.

Tested Features: 

  • Range tested to ~250 feet.
  • Alerts sent to multiple people.
  • Not waterproof.
  • Historical Data export (CSV format).
  • Mobile and desktop apps are full featured.
  • Connected to 2 different MiFi hotspots (for wifi link)

Technical Details:

Dimensions2.25 x 2.25 x 0.8 inches
Weight3.4 ounces
Model numberGL-300
BatteriesInternal Lithium provided

LandAirSea 54 GPS Tracker

landairsea-54 trailer trackerPower Source: Battery or Mini-USB
Battery Life: up to 14 days
SIM Card: Yes, built-in
Data Updates: 3 minutes
Monthly Fee: $20
Operating Temperature: -40 to 140°F
Waterproof: Yes
Mobile & Desktop App: Both, Free
Dimensions: 2.5 x 2.5 x 1 inches

Check Price

Setup Experience:
Following the setup instructions, we downloaded the app and then were able to connect the LAS sensor to our phone. It uses a bar code to scan for quick activation.

It gives you payment and update options, we selected the cheapest plan which gives a ping every 3 minutes for $20/mo.

Pros

  • Quick Setup;
  • Unlimited data storage;
  • Very accurate;
  • In-App alerts included;
  • 2+ Years Battery life;

Cons

  • High monthly subscription;
  • No direction or heading on the map 

Performance & Overall Experience:
The LandAirSea 54 works great, and with sensor updates that default to 3 minutes.

Once alerts were set for geo-zone, then when out of range, saw the notification on the phone. LAS 54 will not send email alerts unless you have set the email address at setup.

We did like the accuracy of the sensor, and its magnetic base. So, you’ll rest easy knowing that, if something happens to your toolbox, you’ll have a much better chance of saving it from a possible disaster.

There is an optional external power cable.

Tested Features: 

  • Range tested to ~150 feet.
  • Alerts to phone app.
  • Splashproof.
  • Attaches easily to the equipment frame.
  • Mobile app is full featured.
  • Battery life

Technical Details:

Dimensions1.57 x 1.57 x 0.6 inches
Weight2.8 ounces
Model number54
Batteries1 Lithium-ion battery built-in

Apple or Android Phone with Trakkit App

Power Source: Battery or USB Cable
Battery Life: up to 6 days
SIM Card: No
Data Updates: 2 minutes
Monthly Fee: $5
Operating Temperature: -40 to 140°F
Waterproof: No
Mobile & Desktop App: Both, Free
Dimensions: 5.5 x 2.8 x .25 inches

More Info

Setup & Install Experience:
Most people don’t realize a cell phone makes a superb GPS tracker. If you have an old one around use it and get a cheap data plan. See more details below.

If you get a $5/mo data plan with a SIM card, you are ready to track.

Just install the Trakkit app on that phone and put the phone somewhere in your toolbox.

Pros

  • Low monthly subscription;
  • Unlimited data storage;
  • Best performance;
  • In-App alerts included;
  • Can be hardwired or charged from USB pack;

Cons

  • Hardwire kit recommended;

Performance & Overall Experience:
The Trakkit App works great, and with location updates that default to 2 minutes.

We set up geo-zone alerts for when the toolbox was out of range and got the notification on the phone. Trakkit will send email and app alerts, but SMS text or Voice calls require a subscription.

The accuracy of a cell phone is very good, even in the worst installation parts of the vehicle or a tool box hidden inside a vehicle. So, you’ll rest easy knowing that, if something happens to your tools, you’ll have a much better chance of saving them from a possible disaster.

See more details on a cheap data plan for your tracking cell phone.

Tested Features: 

  • Range tested to ~150 feet.
  • Alerts to phone app.
  • Starts tracking once phone plugged in.
  • Attaches easily to the equipment frame.
  • Mobile app is full featured.

Technical Details:

Dimensions
Weight2.8 ounces
Model numberNA
BatteriesNA

How to Mount the GPS Tracker

If you are using a phone as a tracker you could use a waterproof case that also has strong magnets like the one below:

Cell Phone Waterproof & Magnetic Case

Then you could put the case just about anywhere, cell phones will even track inside metal boxes, unlike other GPS trackers.

Here is a link to the waterproof case.

When you hardwire the phone, all you need is a USB battery pack. You could use this to charge your own cell phone and keep it in your toolbox.

See more about cell phone GPS tracking.

Conclusion

There are many options when selecting a GPS tracker for your toolbox. Size, features, and cost. Many people are surprised when they realized they could use their old cell phones and get a cheap data plan.

FAQs

How does GPS Work in a Tool Box

You can install a GPS tracker for a tool box. See our metal tool box test above.