Can a GPS Tracker Cause Vehicle Electronics Issues, Flashing Dash Lights, or Limp Mode?

Vehicle Electronics System

GPS Vehicle Trackers are unlikely to cause issues with a vehicle’s electronics system. GPS Trackers often get the blame by mechanics because simply removing the tracker from the OBD II port may (at least temporarily) resolve the issue. However very often there is an underlying issue with the vehicle itself. The GPS tracker may be alerting you to a potentially dangerous situation with your vehicle’s electronics.

Btracking advises customers to take electronics issues seriously, especially if you have GPS Trackers in similar make/model vehicles that are experiencing no issues.  We strongly recommend a mechanic thoroughly check the vehicle’s systems to correctly diagnose and replace any malfunctioning electronics components.

As well, vehicles are occasionally manufactured with grounding that is slightly out of spec. While this normally poses no operating danger, out-of-spec grounding can generate “ERROR FRAMES” naturally on the CANBUS line which may disrupt communication within the vehicle when another load/node (i.e., a GPS tracker) is added to the interface. This is rare but can occur due to manufacturing variability.

Finally, check if there are other 3rd party devices also connected to the vehicle’s electronics bus. Multiple items such as OBD telematics units, alarm systems, OnStar, lifts, fuel loggers, etc., may put too much load on a vehicle’s electronics system causing it to go into limp mode or dash lights to flash or go off.

If this is not the case further inspection needs to be done on the vehicle specific year make and model to evaluate.