A BUYER’S GUIDE TO THE BEST AUTOMOTIVE DIAGNOSTIC SCANNER
An automotive diagnostic scanner is basically an electronic tool that is used to identify, diagnose and, sometimes even reprogram the modules of the vehicle control. Once these diagnostic tools were very expensive and way out of the budget of the common man. But today, with the introduction of microelectronics and high tech software, the cost has considerably come down, and one can hope to buy even the best automotive diagnostic scanner at an affordable price range. But on the downside, the cutting down of costs has led to several companies making their own version and models of these scanners and advertising each one as the best automotive diagnostic scanner. With so many such products already in the market and a lot more popping up every day, it is quite hard to decide which one is actually worth your money. So in this article, we will talk about everything that you need to understand to help you pick out the best automotive diagnostic scanner.
How does a diagnostic scanner work?
One cannot hope to start the quest for finding the best automotive diagnostic scanner without a basic understanding of how it actually works. Without getting very deep into all the technical and mechanical aspects of the tool, its method of working is quite easy to understand. Most vehicles built after the year 1996, will come with an inbuilt 16 pin plug connector or some other equivalent connector.
You can just plug your diagnostic scanner into this connector whose location may vary according to the vehicle. Then the scan commences and by the end of it, you will be updated of your vehicle’s condition and will be indicated if your vehicle is safe to drive or not. If by chance your scanner detects a problem, then you can find more details about it by connecting it to a computer. There are also many online apps that can do the same function.
What are the benefits of using an automotive diagnostic scanner?
Before going into the details of the selection criteria, it is first necessary to understand what you can expect from the best automotive diagnostic scanner. Using such a scanner for your automotive has a wide range of benefits and some of them are listed below. A quick read through these points will help you decide if you actually need a scanner or not.
The basic function of a diagnostic scanner is to alert you when there is something going wrong with yourÂ automotive. This saves a lot of time and energy as the problem can be identified and rectified before it has a chance to manifest into a troublesome headache. This is especially helpful if you are the kind of person that goes on long road trips.
With a diagnostic tool in hand, the vehicle owner does not have to constantly worry about what the flashing lights mean and they do not have to drive their vehicle to the nearest mechanic shop every time. A diagnosis automotive tool offers a way of self- correction and repair.
Even if you are not a mechanical genius figuring out the options of a best automotive diagnostic scanner is not a big deal. They are quite easy to operate.
They are portable. Which means that you can easily carry them with you on all your trips. So even if your vehicle has a break down in an unexpected place, you can still run diagnosis and try to find appropriate rectification measures then and there.
If your scanner is one of the best automotive diagnostic scanners, then you can trust it with your vehicle’s health blindly. This cannot be the same case with mechanics. Many mechanical shops might cheat you and prey on your lack of knowledge in the particular subject when you bring them your vehicle for service.
Though the initial cost spent might be a bit high, a diagnostic scanner will come in handy in the long run. You can cut down the costs that your service centres ask for the diagnosis and you will also have a better understanding of the problem so that they will not be able to deceive you.
A diagnostic scanner will also be very useful if you are planning to buy a second-hand vehicle. You can analyse the vehicle’s condition and then decide if it is actually worthy of buying.
What problems can an automotive diagnostic scanner solve?
Of course one cannot hope to invest so much in an automotive diagnostic scanner without actually knowing what kind of problems it can solve. These automotive scanners can detect and diagnose a lot of issues. Some of the most common ones are listed below.
1.) Any problems related to the combustion system of your vehicle’s engine like the exhaust, fuel pressure or carburettor can be detected with the help of a diagnostic scanner. It can also detect problems in the air intake or irregularities in the oil temperatures.
2.) The problems concerning fuel injectors, injection pumps, turbocharger and other related components also come within the scope of the best automotive diagnostic scanner.
3.) A good automotive scanner also has the ability to detect faults and defects related to the electrical systems of the vehicles.
4.) It can detect the rise in temperature of the engine and also helps identify the probable cause. Such a scanner is also equipped to spot other issues like the malfunction in the ignition chain, defects in the crankshaft or irregularities in the timing chain.
What are the expected features in an automotive diagnostic scanner?
Finally, we have come to the most important part. What to look for while hoping to buy the best automotive diagnostic scanner. There a lot of features whose presence or absence can help you determine whether you should get the concerned automotive scanner or not. But in general, all good diagnostic scanners should have a list of mandatories qualities. Some of them are mentioned below.
1. Check forÂ standardization
In early days, a particular diagnostic scanner was capable of running diagnosis only for one particular type and model of vehicle. Naturally, this led to a lot of confusion. Fortunately, in recent times, all that confusion has been eliminated and newly standardized scanners were introduced. These new automotive diagnostic scanners are compatible with almost all vehicle models. So when you get your scanner, check if it is compatible with your vehicle and if its service can be extended to other vehicles also.
2. A good grip of all electronic systems
Most average modern vehicles are run by a computer system that is responsible for the majority of the vehicle’s functioning including the automatic transmission, the ignition system, the fuel injection and several other small systems and components. Sensors are fitted all over the vehicles body and interior and they keep transmitting data back and forth to the main computer modules.
Tapping into these sensors and reading their data is probably the best way for an automotive diagnostic tool to get a grip on what is right or wrong with the system. Hence all good automotive diagnostic scanners must have a good ability to establish such a connection on the electronic level. This is very essential to identify and pinpoint the main source of the issue.
3. An easy to use design
The usage of a diagnostic tool can be as simple as hooking it up to your dashboard to the connector near to the driver’s seat. But with the numerous amounts of models of diagnostic tools popping up every day, most of them may not support this simple usage. But of course, the usage and connectivity also depend on your vehicle. So get the diagnostic scanner that best suits your particular vehicle.
An onboard type scanner should be portable and much convenient. The usage should also be simple and easy to understand. Even if your diagnostic tool is filled with features, it is of no use if you do not know to use it properly. So get a scanner that is easy and comfortable to use rather than going for a highly advanced expensive one (unless you are very particular about exploring all the possible depths of a diagnostic scanner).
4. Proper display of problem codes
As soon as the scanner completes its diagnosis, if there is any problem detected, the tool will display a problem code. This is how most diagnostic systems work. To a common user, the code is nothing but a group of numbers and letters. What you need to discern this problem code, is a good, easy to understand manual. This is where most brands and models of auto diagnostic scanners fail.
They might have good software that detects malware and displays the code, but there are no effective means of identifying what the code means. You can always look for the explanation of the problem codes online. There are several online forums that address such issues. But to be on the safer side, check if your diagnostic scanner tool comes with a well written and clear explanation manual, a booklet or an information CD.
5. Affordability of product
Even if all the other features fall into place, the cost is probably the most important deciding factor. Fortunately, the automotive diagnostic scanner is one tool that comes with a very wide price range. Even if you cannot afford the high-end models, you can always purchase the basic ones without any considerable strain on your budget. The high price range models have detailed explanation for the problems and also have additional features like multi-language options.
The lower end models just display the problem code without any additional info. But you can always look up the meaning for those codes online or from the instruction manual. So either way, having your own scanner is a lot better than paying frequent visits to a mechanical shop.
6. Check for inspection readiness option
In some cases when a vehicle is up for an emissions inspection test, certain things like the check engine light being turned on may result in failure of the test. Certain automotive diagnostic tools include a special additional feature called the “inspection and maintenance readiness.” This feature will be very helpful when your vehicle has to go through such tests. The scanner identifies such errors beforehand and says if it can be rectified. So this precautionary measure can help you save a lot of time. If your prospective automotive diagnostic scanner has such additional maintenance check features, then it gains a positive point.
Build quality: Though this is not exactly an internal feature, it is just as important as the other features on the list. Good build quality is not only for an aesthetic purpose. It is also for durability. Your diagnostic scanner should accompany you on all your journeys without falling apart. Even if your scanner has the latest technology with all the possible relevant features, it is useless if it simply breaks easily. So get a tough, durable product that can withstand the rough road and stay by your side at all times.
Customer response: Most of the people buy such tools from online sources. This is because the online mode of purchasing offers you a lot of choices and categorises the different price ranges based on your need. Apart from these, the best benefit of online shopping is the availability of previous reviews. Good customer feedback and evaluation is the best guarantee that you can get for your product. So do not hesitate to read all the reviews before settling on a particular product.
7. Bottom line
Whether you have a new vehicle or an old one, it is always better to have a tool that lets you read diagnostic codes. This is going to help you save a lot of money in the long run. Once you have found a prospective diagnostic scanner, just run through and check with all the above-mentioned points. If all the points have worked out favourably, then you have probably selected one of the best automotive diagnostic scanners.
ANCEL AD310 Classic Enhanced Universal OBD II Scanner
Have you ever imagined what could happen if you could document everything that your car does? Or have you ever wondered if your car could always tell you whenever anything would go wrong? Well, it is indeed possible with the car engine fault code reader. The OBD II scanner by ANCEL is the next big thing in the market. The automotive experts just love it as it protects you against any impending disaster that can strike your car. Protect your car and your life, along with those of loved ones, with this car engine fault code reader.
The reader can scan the errors quite fast and comes in a classic design. The trouble codes can be easily read by any beginner and help save money and time.
The device supports a number of languages, like German, English, French, Dutch, Portuguese and Spanish and a few others too. This device works on a range of imported cars and can be an utter delight for people.
You can easily determine the cause of the fault in the engine and can understand the details related to it too. The error codes are also stored in hard memory and the historic codes and definitions are supported too.
The large LCD display and the backlight add up to the elegance and ease of use of the device.
The cable is quite long and is enough to get the device connected at any place. There will be no worries about having the device working in any kind of location or height.
The buttons work quite responsively and add easy to work with.
The device’s quality may look a little cheap and the visual appeal may be less.
All types of vehicles may not be supported. This can create issues with compatibility of the device.
In a professional environment and even in homes these days, scanners are fast becoming popular at all places. People need to scan documents, posters and even small photographs for their personal or corporate use. If you feel that your work involves a lot of scanning work, then you need to bring a scanner at your place. What can be better than a Bluetooth scanner that works on all kind of devices. No matter if you have iPad, iPhone or Android device, it can work on all kinds of machines. Here is where the BlueDriver scanner comes to picture. Get it at your home right away.
The scanner is compatible with a range of devices like iPad, iPhone and even Android devices. No matter where your document is, you will get the right scan for your document.
The cable that connects to the scanner is also quite long. There will not be any hassles regarding the connection of the scanner to your device.
The code reader is really efficient and can work as good as a handheld scanner. Your iPad or tablet is good enough to get the scanner working.
The quality of the machine and the finishing is really good. Moreover, the kind of seamlessness that you can find with this device is unparalleled.
The softness of the buttons and the efficiency of the device is something that you will envy it for.
The display of the device and the character display is really quite cool and helps in the efficient operation of the device. The product has got rave reviews from the customers.
The visual appeal may be low for some people.
The speed of the device’s operation may not be as suitable as others would expect.
However, you must get this scanner at your home and get it working for your use.
A diagnostic tool can be of very potent use for your daily life. You can get to know what is going wrong with your car and how it can be rectified. A proper diagnostic tool can be extremely helpful to avoid an impending accident and to get the car right on track all the time. If you want to get a right assessment of the car’s operations, then you must get the AUTEL’s Auxi diagnostic tool for your vehicle. Are you excited to know more about it? The life of your car and your loved ones can be elongated with ease.
The device is quite easy to use and can be used by any kind of the beginner. The variety of services and facilities that this tool offers are just numerous.
The price tag is quite low for this device and compared to other similar devices, it is quite cheaper. Still it is more effective than many other tools. The device won’t pinch your pockets much.
User friendliness is a USP of this tool. Any kind of user can easily use it and can never get wrong with the operations. The touch pads and the buttons, along with display add to the seamless use of the device.
A 12-month guarantee gives the kind of assurance that no other device can give you. You will get the best of services from the manufacturer and certainly will be assured of the best of services.
This device can scan a range of machines in the car and give you the on-time analysis which can help you be on the dot with the diagnostics.
The range of cars that it serves may be less.
Some beginners may take time to comprehend the entire set of facilities that this device has. Otherwise, it is quite a useful device and can help you a lot.
Humans need to be diagnosed with any kind of ailment. Why should cars not get the same kind of treatment? What if your car is suffering from any problem and you need to know it in time? It is in these times that you must get the best analysis of the working of your car and be on the dot to solve its problems. A tool by TryAce can help you get this power right in your hands. Are you ready to learn more about it? We are sure that you are excited. Let’s go forward and learn about it.
The kind of features that this device display is awesome. You can get the EOBD ad OBJDI diagnostic features in this device and can also enjoy the read and clean facilities. You can read the vital vehicle information, and also have data stream features.
The onboard testing facilities and printing features can help a lot in maintaining the status of the car. You can get all the features printed on your device.
The range of languages supported on this device is wide. You can get support for English, Dutch, French and even Spanish. Italians and Russian will not be disappointed too, so won’t be the Portuguese.
The compatibility of the device is quite high and you can easily use it with any kind of car. Only a few cars may not be supported.
The sleek and smart design of the device will help to get a futuristic feel in the car. No wonder, it is the perfect device for the wonderful car that you have.
The software updates are assured and you won’t feel like a laggard at any cost.
The range of cars supported by this device may be very less and can make you suffer a bit.
Your car always something to you, which you often don’t understand. Whenever it feels any problem, it gives out signals to warn you. We often ignore them out of lack of knowledge on how to read them. If you can’t interpret them, you will end up damaging your car and also threatening your own life as well as your loved ones’. This is where the automotive engine fault code reader comes into use. Get one of this and you will be assured of a safer drive for all times. If you want to know more about it, read further.
The device comes with a plug and plays feature. The device can be easily plugged into the car and there won’t be any need to do any modifications to the car for installing this machine.
The indicator on the device warns you every time there is an issue with the car. The issue is displayed and it helps the driver to get it checked at the earliest.
There is a patented one-click readiness key for the quick check of the state emissions. The drive cycles can also be verified.Â This helps to have the device respond faster to the stimulus and also to warn the driver on time.
There is no need for batteries and chargers for the device. The OBD II data link connector is enough to get the device charged and running efficiently.
The bright colour of the LED display and the backlight helps to get the ease of use and drivers love the seamless use of it.
The one-year warranty that comes along with this device is assuring enough for people to love and buy it.
The visual appeal and finishing of the device, as seen in the reviews, may not suit the liking of all people.
If you are searching for the best OBD2 Diagnostic Scanner, then look no further and settle with Foxwell NT301 OBD2 Code reader. This is not the ordinary device it can work universally to check the engine and automotive faults and it is compatible with almost all SUVs, light-duty trucks and other cars. It comes with multiple menu options and has a DTCs definition that enables the users to read and erase the DTC or engine fault codes and I/M readiness. The scanner also provides you with on-screen DTCs definitions and it is designed with a built-in DTCs lookup library which enables you to recognize exactly why the check engine light is turned on.
The other features of FOXWELL NT301 Car Obd2 Code Scanner include the ability to read the emission of your car. This is the primary test that is often done by mechanics when you send your car for servicing. But, with this Diagnostic Scan Tool car owners can easily test the emission system and know if it passes or fails the inspection. Another great feature of the tool is the DTCs Lookup tab which is available on the main screen and the role of this tab is to read out the codes, but the meaning of these codes are not available which you need to check separately after the inspection is over. It also has engine fault sensor which can read the faults in the parts of your engine so that you can rectify it instantly and keep running your car on the road safely.
Good looking devices with multi-functions
It even detects engine fault codes
It clears the engine fault codes using diagnostic tool
It can’t erase or show error codes for every problem
Autel AL519 AutoLink Enhanced OBD ll Scan Tool is all around, the complete diagnostic scan tool that comes with multi-function to support all the ten modes of OBDII test. The tool comes with amazing features combined with unique patented one click I/M readiness key, built-in speaker, TFT colour display and more. This tool is really powerful and ultimate in terms of affordability and power that enables the users to do the diagnostic job faster. This Engine Code Reader comes with thousands of troubleshooter code tips that enable the mechanics to save the repairing and diagnosis time. Besides reading and eliminating the manufacturer and generic codes, the diagnostic tool can also display the freeze frame data and VIN. The tool can also be updated using the internet, but ensure its compatibility with the vehicle you intend to use.
Autel AL519 is the diagnostic tool that is known for its simplicity and the functions of this tool are very simple to use. With the use of this diagnostic tool you can reduce the repairing cost until certain extend. Besides helping you to solve the small repairs, the Auto Code Reader also helps you to read, update and erase the data codes available on the screen and also helps you to read further. The process of navigating the keypads is also ease and the default reading and repairing process would become easier and faster for you with this tool. This tool also comes with both generic and manufacturer codes. Ease access and cost efficiency are the major benefits of this diagnostic tools.
Simplicity and Highly Functional
Compatible scanning using both generic and specific codes
The compact and modern scanning tool
It never updates it data online
It can be scanty with the range of information at times
SEEKONE KW860 obd2 code scanner is the professional grade, powerful Best Car Diagnostic Tool that features read and erases DTCs emission related trouble codes, query freeze frame data, real time battery monitoring, read dynamic DataStream, I/M Readiness Monitoring, O2 sensor test and more. This diagnostic tool enables you to determine causes of the engine troubles precisely. The best part of this OBD II scanner is that it is strongly compatible with most of the gasoline vehicles sold across the USA. This scanner also supports all the OBDII protocols and also works with almost all German, French, English, Italians, Spanish, Russian, Dutch and Portuguese made cars. This is the scanner tool that is powered directly from the OBDII Data Link Connector of your car. It also works to read and erase the engine fault codes.
SEEKONE KW860 obd2 code scanner is the exclusive OBDII Auto Code Reader that comes with unique one-click I/M readiness status design which is very faster to scan the engine health status and let you know its status. It is exclusive for O2 sensor test, advanced on-board monitoring and EVAP test of fuel tank system which gives you full control on the running status of the car. There are red, green and yellow lights which indicate the vehicle engine health and let you know the emission monitor status. It comes with rugged patented design and anti-shock facility with 15ft height drop test. It enables you to perform professional diagnostic and check the in and out of your car.
BAFX Diagnostic OBDII Reader and Scanner is the advanced Android device which you can sync via Bluetooth with your Android based product and it can also be synced with your Windows Computer to receive and send information about the car. The cars that are sold in the USA needs to be OBD2 compliant and this Diagnostic Scanner can do well with all the models of car. With the help of this scanner, you can retrieve trouble codes and also reset the check engine light. It also helps you to read a variety of statistics that are available with other scanners. It helps you to monitor some great things like O2 sensor readings, throttle, Revs, EOT, Speed Fuel Trim, Boost and many more things. With it is clubbed with other compatible software you can also check the emissions readiness and also track the 0-60MPH, 1/4 and 1/8 Mile times plus more.
The BAFX Products Bluetooth Diagnostic OBDII Reader / Scanner for Android Devices also work with almost all the vehicles that are located in the USA after 1996 and newer. It is capable of reading the diagnostic trouble codes which include both manufacturer-specific and generic and display their meaning along with the codes. The scanner also helps you to clear the trouble codes and turn the MIL off. However, the adapter is not compatible for reading ABS, SRS, Oil Change or other lights. It is only compatible for reading he OBDII information related to the check engine light. Besides, it can be connected to the Windows laptop or Android devices with ease using its app.
Read and clear DTCs
Engine data such as RPM
Display and read and delete
It does not read ERS, ABS, Oil Change and other lights
Now you are no longer required to pay at mechanic shops every time when you see the check engine light is on. Simply invest in OxGord OBD2 Scanner OBDII Code Reader and use it to read the diagnostic trouble codes both manufacturer-specific and generic codes with ease. This Diagnostic Scan Tool not only read the trouble codes but also displays the meaning of the code by checking it with over 3000 generic codes listed in the database. It also helps you to clear the trouble codes and even turn the MIL check engine light off.
This is the advanced Auto Diagnostic Scanner that not only scans and read the trouble codes but also troubleshoots the OBDII codes in most of the cars that are running on the roads of USA today. It is compatible with the vehicles that are manufactured since 1996. Moreover, using this scanning tool is also easy and straightforward. You can use it yourself and read the DTCs so that you can fix them yourself without the assistance of experts.
The device comes with a small LCD screen which read and displays the generic codes with definitions from its database. It will read and clear both generic and manufacturer specific codes and also turns off the MIL check engine light. The package comprises all the essential things and there is no need for any extra cables. So, simply plug it in and check the trouble codes and rectify it yourself to keep your car running.
Read and Troubleshoot OBDII codes
It is compatible with most of the cars made after 1996
LCD screen displays trouble codes along with its meaning
It reads both generic and manufacturer specific codes