Here you’ll find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions. Click the question to reveal the answer.
We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) about our products, services and usage of our website which may be helpful to you. If you have a question which isn’t covered here, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Common queries about the digital tachograph, smart cards, vehicle units, etc.
1 Where can I get a digital tachograph unit?
All in-scope vehicles over 3.5 tonnes sold in the UK and the EU after May 2006 are required by law to be fitted with a digital tachograph.
If you wish to fit a digital tachograph to a truck that does not have one fitted, or replace a broken digital tachograph then you will need to contact one of the tachograph manufacturers direct or your vehicle dealer for advice on suppliers in your area.
2 How often should I download data from my driver cards and vehicle units?
By law you are required to download driver smartcards at least every 28 days and vehicle unit data every 90 days.
Ideally you should download driver cards and vehicle units more frequently to ensure you have regular backups of your data and any infringements can be spotted and dealt with quickly.
3 What are the different types of digital tachograph smartcard?
There are four types:
- Driver Card. Carried by your drivers, and which is inserted into the digital tachograph when the driver is on duty.
- Company Card. Used by the company for authorising vehicle downloads, etc.
- Workshop Card. Available only to approved calibration centres.
- Control Card. Available only to VOSA and the Police for carrying out enforcement.
4 Who can supply me with Digital Tachograph smartcards?
In the UK Driver Card and Company Card application packs are available from the Driver & Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). Call the DVLA digital tachograph helpline on 0300 790 6109, or see further information in our Compliance & Advice pages.
Workshop Card application forms are available from VOSA. For further information and to get the required forms call the VOSA helpline on 0300 123 9000, or go to the VOSA – Workshop Cards section of the Business Link site.
5 Why do I need a Card Reader and VU download tool?
The Card Reader is connected to a PC, and is used to read the information from your Driver’s Card.
The Vehicle Download Unit is used to read Vehicle information from the Vehicle Unit (the Digital Tachograph).
The information from both the Driver’s Card and the Vehicle Unit is required by the legislation to be recorded and stored.
- 6 Which Vehicle Unit download tools can I use with Smartanalysis?
7 What are the differences between these VU download devices?
The new remote download devices (including the digiDL and VDO DLD) are the most convenient and efficient means of downloading data direct from your vehicles. These units can be fitted to each of your vehicles and they transmit data wirelessly using either the GPRS network, or WiFi. If you are interested in these devices, please contact our Support Team who will be able to advise on the devices available and the benefits and costs.
The VDO DLK Pro Download Key and the Digidown are very similar devices. They plug into the Vehicle Unit and allow all or some of the data on the unit to be downloaded and stored on the device. The VDO Download Key uses internal memory for storage, whereas the Digidown uses a removable SD flash memory card. If you choose one of these two devices, you will also need to purchase a separate card reader.
The OPTAC and the Digidown+ devices are also very similar to each other. Each device allows you to download direct from the Vehicle Unit in the same way as the VDO DLK Pro Download Key and the Digidown, and in addition they incorporate a smartcard reader that reads your digital tachograph cards. The key advantage of the card readers in these two devices is that they can be used while disconnected from a PC. This means that they are completely portable, and can be used by drivers without needing access to a PC. If you choose one of these devices, you do not need a separate card reader.
The digipostpro is different to the other devices. It uses GPRS over the mobile phone network or your LAN. It does not need to be connected to a PC to send data to Smartanalysis, and is ideal for locations where no PCs and/or Internet connectivity are available. It has a built in smartcard reader, but you still need to purchase a VU download device (e.g. digivu, VDO DLK ProDownload Key, etc.) to get data from the vehicle to the device.
8 I get a ‘Download Fault 12′ message on the tachograph display when I download from a vehicle. Does this mean the download has failed?
No, the download has not failed.
When using any VU download device with the VDO digital tachograph the message ‘Download Fault 12′ may occasionally be shown on the tachograph display. This does not indicate a problem with the download process or the downloaded data. Instead it is indicating that the tachograph has not stored any data for one or more days within the download period requested, probably because the tachograph power supply was disconnected for those days.
Users should allow the download to finish normally and then press the ‘OK’ button on the tachograph to clear the error message.
Questions and information relating to our Smartanalysis service
- 1 What is Smartanalysis?
2 Do I need Smartanalysis?
If you operate vehicles that are fitted with analogue or digital tachographs you need to manage your company’s compliance with transport legislation. Smartanalysis is an easy and cost effective way of doing this.
3 What is needed to send digital tachograph data to Smartanalysis?
To send digital tachograph data from driver smartcards and vehicle units to Smartanalysis, you will need:
- PC with minimum Pentium 4 500MHz processor
- Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional or later
- 200MB free hard disk space
- 256MB memory
- One free USB port
- Minimum screen resolution 1024×768
- PC/SC / ISO7816 compliant USB Smart Card Reader capable of reading T0 and T1 type cards. These are available from our online shop on this site.
- Broadband Internet connection 512kB or better
- Once you are set up on the Smartanalysis system, you can download the Smartanalysis downloader software free of charge.
4 What is needed to send analogue charts to Smartanalysis?
You have two choices for analysis of paper charts using Smartanalysis:
i. Post your charts to one of our tachograph analysis bureau partners in the conventional way. Charts are then analysed by the bureau within an agreed timescale, results are uploaded to Smartanalysis by the bureau and the charts are posted back to you.
ii. Scan your charts from your depots. The chart scans are sent immediately to Smartanalysis, the mode trace is analysed and centre field details entered. The results are then available on Smartanalysis for you to run reports, etc. Using a scanner means that you never have to post your charts, the charts can be sent for analysis more quickly, and you will see the results of the analysis much more quickly.
If you choose to scan your charts you will need to purchase a colour duplex scanner with an automatic document feeder capable of feeding tachograph charts. We can supply this to you (see our online shop on this site), or advise on suitablility if you already have scanners.
Remember that your drivers are required by law to carry 28 days’ worth of tachograph data with them in the cab. Hence you will need a system that is capable of extracting the data from the paper tachograph disc on a daily basis for your Drivers Hours’ and Working Time Directive analysis, whilst allowing your driver to retain the actual paper charts for 28 days.
5 Am I tied to a contract with Smartanalysis?
No. There is no contract and you only pay to submit data to the service.
6 Does Smartanalysis automatically analyse WTD rules for me?
Yes. The WTD rules will be analysed, and accurate reporting on infringements given, providing the records are filled in. The WTD includes Holidays, Sick days etc. and these need to be recorded. Digital Tachograph records alone are not enough to comply with all the WTD rules.
7 Does Smartanalysis automatically calculate Driver’s rules for me?
Yes. All tachograph records entered are analysed for Driver’s rules.
8 How much does Smartanalysis cost?
Our charges for the Digital Tachograph are around 25 pence per daily record. There is no charge for Vehicle Unit uploads. The exact price will depend on the size of your fleet.
The charges for Paper Tachographs are dependent on the size of your fleet, and therefore the number of charts that you send (or scan) for analysis.
Our charges provide the best value for money – as you only pay for what you use.
Most other companies charge on a fixed fee ‘per-driver-per-week’ which means you are penalised for drivers that work a short week. In addition, other companies will make additional charges for sending Vehicle Unit data – we don’t charge for this.
9 How do I pay for Smartanalysis?
You will be invoiced on a monthly basis for an amount based on exact usage for the month. We offer 30 day terms for payment of these invoices.
You only pay for the data you want processed, and only after you have seen or been sent your reports.
Information and answers about the data you collect and how it is available
1 Are my records completely secure?
Yes. All access to the system is password protected. The Smartanalysis website uses the highest available level of encryption (128 bit SSL). Our servers are held in a secure location with 24×7 security guards.
2 Are my records available to DVSA or the Police?
3 If I use Agency or Part Time Workers will I be charged for weeks they are not working?
4 Can I have a copy of my records?
Yes. Your records are your property. Please contact us, and we will arrange this for you.
5 Can I record holidays and sickness?
Yes. All days not working due to holidays etc. can be recorded and the WTD rules applied as required.
6 Can I get support if I have problems?
Yes. Please contact our support team on 01249 463355 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All calls are at your normal operator rates, we will not charge you premium call rates for any support you need.