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Bug sweep your car like a Pro.

bug sweep your car

Bug sweep your car the correct way.

Did you know “you” can bug sweep your car, using any of our bug detectors by Following the correct procedure below.

In this article we explain how to bug sweep your vehicle successfully the right way, following the correct process. You can bug sweep your car for bugging devices & GPS trackers correctly by following a specific process.

bug sweep your car

Look for a typical magnetic GPS tracking device or enclosure.

Check for GSM bug’s & consider motive, & logic.

Why might your vehicle be under surveillance or have a GPS tracker attached to it? Exploring motive and cause, might give you an idea of what type of bugging device to look for and who may have put it there. Atention, unless you want to alert the spy master that your bug sweeping your car? Check for GSM bugging devices that may be in the vehicle “before” you check for tracking devices.

bug sweep your car for GSM voice bugs

Typical low cost GSM voice bugging device that offers basic GPS tracking, very common.

Now lets explore how to bug sweep your car.

Turn off all mobile phones..

Detecting GSM bugging devices is relatively straightforward. 95% of GSM voice bug’s will be situated inside the vehicle cabin area. The bug needs to hear sound thats inside the car, so the microphone can listen in.

Ready to begin?

Your bug detector must be capable of scanning GSM.

You must use a bug detector capable of scanning mobile phone frequencies commonly known as (GSM). There are many bug detectors on offer, make sure your device is capable of scanning GSM , 2G, 3G and 4G bands. (We explain why later in the article).

bug detector
bug detector 3G & 4G
5G evo bug detector
  • Leave the vehicle and close the doors, lock the car with the remote control.
  • Wait approximately 5 to 10 minutes. Stand approximately 20 metres away from the car.
  • Turn on your bug detector, if you have the ability to isolate GSM signals then do that.
  • Approach the car, unlock, get in, start the engine and play some music.

(If there is a GSM voice bug in the car, it will trigger from shock, sound or vibration). Your bug detector will show you the signal. The signal strength will be high because you’re very close to the source of transmission. The signal will be constant as the bugging device transmits. So not a quick burst or signal spike, like an SMS message, more of a (long notification.)

Please note, basic bug detectors pick up Bluetooth and other signals in & around the car, so turn off all radio signals in the vehicle. Advanced detectors offer the ability to turn off radio signals isolating GSM signals, is this very advantageous? However if you’re using a basic bug detector, take your vehicle to a remote location away from people & road traffic?

  • Bug detectors vary, so it’s hard to say how your detector will respond exactly.
  • But the signal will be high and constant, if the voice bug is transmitting.
  • Test in different locations eliminates false signal from people’s phones nearby.
  • If you’re in a busy area and have a basic bug detector move to a better location.

Bug sweep your car in the right location.

Take the car to a remote location, preferably a rural area that has mobile signal coverage. The suspected bugging device needs to trigger and transmit. If there is no mobile phone service then you might not see the transmissions?

bug sweep your car
“Think about the radio environment where you will be conducting the test”.

You are scanning for mobile phone frequencies, so you need to be as far away as possible from other mobile phone signals. Modern bugging devices and GPS tracking systems predominantly utilise the mobile phone network for sending data.

Your bug detector should be designed to receive mobile phone signals but the device can not tell the difference between them. The detector will alert you to any GSM signal in close proximity?

EG: if a car drives past & the driver is on the phone, then your detector will show a hit, that’s not what you want? If you want to bug sweep your car correctly then it is important to see genuine signal hits coming from your car.

Selecting a quiet location in the countryside is best, especially if you are using a basic bug detector. Use Google maps to search for a location that’s remote and suitible. Selecting a location beforehand is good planning.

If there is a GSM voice bug in the car you will see it on your bug detector. Once you detect a device you will then have to find it. Unfortunately most bug detectors will not help you much further here, manual & physical inspection is now required to physically find and remove the bugging device.

If you’re not a technician or mechanic, then you might want to find somebody who is for this last part of the task.

Detecting GPS tracking devices.

Turn off all mobile phones & vehicle signals EG Bluetooth.

  • Leave the car, close the doors, wait approximately 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Stand approximately 20 metres away from the car.
  • Turn on your bug detector, if you have the ability to isolate GSM signals then do that.
  • If you have a basic bug detector then you may not have the option to isolate GSM.
  • Turning off general RF frequencies and only scan for GSM signals.

(During this test you will be scanning for burst transmissions, on GSM by GPRS packet both types of signals are used by tracking devices. Most GPS trackers send location data in burst transmissions, by radio packet. EG, GPRS packets are sent from your mobile phone when you send an email. Most tracking devices use the same method to send data.)

Scanning with advanced bug detection equipment.

If you’re using a professional detection device, then you probably have a logging system. In that case you can continue to drive the car for approximately 3Km.

bug sweep your car

CAM-GX5 advanced mobile phone signal analyser, ideal for bug sweeping any vehicle world wide.

Once you stop, look at the detector’s signal log graph for a full size signal spike. If the spike is consistent over time phazes then you will see the pattern. GPS trackers send burst transmissions at set time intervals or by distance trigger intervals. You must drive approximately 3km to be sure you have activated any suspect tracking device.

Using a basic bug detector to bug sweep your car.

Follow the same process above, to bug sweep your car, but have a friend with you for safety. Basic bug detectors don’t usualy have isolation options for GSM. This means you will have to use a stopwatch or wrist watch to manually note down signal burst event to times.

bug sweep your car

Basic bug detector capable of scanning all GSM signals including 5G

  • Start the clock and drive the car (approximately 3Km).
  • Each time the bug detector shows an alert, note the time, distance & size of signal.
  • You can monitor distance by checking the car’s odometer.
  • Once you cover aproximatly 3Km check your notes / records and see if you can find a consistent pattern for signals received at time and distance intervals. (Readings might be off by a few seconds here and there due to humen recording time delay and device connectivity. Allow approximately 30 seconds tolerance between signal patterns)

Sweeping for tracking devices is not so easy when using a basic bug detector, but it’s not impossible to bug sweep your car with them? The main issue is false signals from many different radio sources. It’s harder to differentiate what signals might be coming from a tracker on your car, opposed to false signals from other outside mobile phone sources.

If there is a tracker on your car then you will know by looking at the signal patterns on your advansed bug detectors log graph. Or patterns on your notes, should you be using a basic bug detector. Look for the large signals, they will be signals that are very close to you, EG coming from your vehicle.

Bug sweeping your car with manual inspection.

In all cases a manual & physical search should be performed, EG: Looking under the chassis for suspicious devices. Such devices are usually magnetic in design. Use a mirror and a torch to check, if you do not have access to a car ramp.

You could also visit your local garage or tyre & Exhaust centre, and report something knocking or banging under the vehicle. Tyre fitting professionals will spot something out of place under a car, very quickly (Don’t forget the tip or their trouble).

This is a basic guide to bug sweeping your vehicle for a bugging device or tracking device. Of course there are other issues associated with the task. Contact us for more information or to book a bug sweep.

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