GPS Odometers vs Vehicle Odometers

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Why is there a difference in the odometer of my vehicle compared to the Argus odometer reading?

There are several reasons why the odometer reading in your vehicle might be different to the Argus odometer reading. It’s important to bear in mind that the way they are fundamentally different when considering this data; the in-vehicle odometer is based on the tyre rotation of the vehicle, whereas a GPS-based odometer is accumulating based on the distance between two points.

It’s also good to consider that In-vehicle odometers have many inherent variances such as the vehicle's wheel size and tyre pressure which can overstate or understate the actual distance travelled by a vehicle compared to the odometer.

Likewise, there are certain variances in GPS-based odometers which all GPS devices are subject to. Our technical engineers have optimised the Argus system to minimise as much of this variance as possible, but this will never be able to guarantee 100% accuracy all the time so we recommend re-calibrating the Argus odometer of vehicles with the in-vehicle odometer every 3-6 months to maintain readings which are as accurate as possible.

With the above being said, here are two of the main reasons why a GPS-based odometer can fall out of sync:

  1. Physical Environment – If a vehicle is in an area outside of GPS coverage such as underground carparks, extremely built-up areas, out in very remote locations, or in a gorge/between mountains then there may not be sufficient coverage for a GPS device to record its location, and as the odometer is based on the distance between two locations then it will not be able to add that travel onto the total odometer value.
  2. Vehicle Requirements – If a vehicle has been jump-started incorrectly and blown a fuse, then the GPS device may not have sufficient power to record and transmit GPS data, and thus the Argus system will not have sufficient information to add the travel to the total odometer value. If a vehicle has not been started in too long and this causes the battery to go flat, sometimes the GPS unit will require rebooting in order to resume normal operation (see article Offline Assets) but if we are not notified that the device requires rebooting, then the distance travelled before the device is rebooted may not be added onto the total odometer value.

Other possible causes of a discrepancy include tampering with the device (sometimes this can happen accidentally when another one of your contractors undertakes other electrical work on the vehicle) among other causes.

These reasons are why we recommend re-calibrating your online Argus odometers to the in-vehicle odometers every 3-6 months. To update your odometer inside your Argus account please see this article: How to Update your Compliance Page

For any other questions on this topic please get in touch with your Account Manager at and they will be happy to help.


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