Reddit reviews: The best code readers & scan tools

We found 1,337 Reddit comments discussing the best code readers & scan tools. We ran sentiment analysis on each of these comments to determine how redditors feel about different products. We found 203 products and ranked them based on the amount of positive reactions they received. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about Code Readers & Scan Tools:

u/johnzabroski · 1 pointr/csharp

I know that's how you feel, but what would you do if you didn't feel that way?

I'd be interested in helping you, if you're interested in pursuing this (I even have a potential business idea on how I'd use this data). Certain luxury manufacturers also let you use the ODB interface to manage advanced settings that are otherwise unavailable.

I searched GitHub for "ODBLink" (a popular scanner tool) to see what scripts/programs users have wrote, and found a Python program with a reference to a useful spreadsheet for how we could get started:

# Thanks to Brian Batista for the use of the CANBUS guide spreadsheet.

So, I searched Google for "canbus spreadsheet", and found this Google Spreadsheet: CANBUS Fleunze SE (top non-ad search result)

Similarly, for Ford Mustang cars, I did some digging and found Ford has opensourced their OpenXC tool:

>While UDS is a closed protocol, researchers at Ford have been working on creating an open platform for interfacing with vehicles. The result is the OpenXC Platform. OpenXC provides a protocol to read data from Ford vehicles over CAN.
>To use it, you’ll need a vehicle interface. A chipKIT can be used with Ford’s open source firmware. Alternatively, you can buy a prebuilt solution from CrossChasm. Once the vehicle interface is up and running, you can access data from the Android and Python APIs. We’ve featured a few OpenXC hacks on Hackaday in the past.
>It’s great to see an automotive manufacturer embracing open source, and hopefully Ford continues to work on the platform. That being said, the OpenXC protocol is read only, and limited to a fairly small set of messages.

The conventional wisdom on ClubLexus.com is "If you're working on a Lexus or Toyota, nothing can beat Toyota Techstream." However, Carista comes close. Carista focuses on hidden features ("dealer-only settings") like daytime running lights. They provide similar "dealer-only settings" for other makes and models.

I personally use an expensive ODB-II reader, because:

  • Scotty Kilmer's YouTube video "This Scan Tool Till Destroy Your Car" claims cheap scan tools can cause electrical problems in your car
  • I can always convince a dealer to help me out, if I really needed to.
  • It is the only OBDII adapter officially licensed with Android and Apple, so you know it will work with any smartphone you own.
  • Bluetooth support
    • Easy to plug-in, pairs fast, and you don't need to bend over and hunch while reading codes because your serial port cable isn't long enough.
  • Unlimited free vehicle specific Repair Reports, generated from our database of millions of fixes verified by ASE Certified Mechanics
    • You're essentially getting Lemur Vehicle Monitors database for free. Lemur owns the Identifix database professional mechanic shops use.
  • Ability to log and export live data to a file (this is called ODB-II Mode 2)
  • Vehicle specifications, maintenance schedules, recalls, Technical Service Bulletins, etc.
  • ODB-II Mode 6: Test results for continuously and noncontinuously monitored systems, supported.
    • If you've ever watched
  • BlueDriver Support is the best online ODB-II support/documentation, for free, anywhere
  • Enhanced diagnostics (especially useful if buying a car at salvage/auction)

    >What are ENHANCED diagnostics?
    >All vehicles with an OBD2 port are required to output basic information when the Check Engine Light comes on. However, a lot of important information (such as ABS, Airbag, Climate Control, etc.) is left behind by other scan tools and code readers. [...] BlueDriver gives you the complete set of diagnostics on a wide range of manufacturers.

    However, the downside to BlueDriver is:

  1. Earlier versions of BlueDriver didn't require a PIN for the Software to authenticate with the Hardware component, so anybody could intercept your Bluetooth traffic and execute a man-in-the-middle attack and potentially kill you. (Read: Really, really don't buy an old, used version of BlueDriver Sensor). Note: This problem only exists in Bluetooth-based ODB-II Sensors.

    >Bluetooth pairing is incredibly simple — sometimes too simple for its own good. Without a four-digit PIN to offer a bare minimum of protection, anyone within a 30-foot range could connect to BlueDriver dongle. If the dongle is not currently connected to a phone, the process will be trivial, and even if the dongle is connected, it's sometimes possible to prioritize a new connection over an existing one.

  2. BlueDriver Sensor (Hardware) only works with the BlueDriver App (Software). I haven't tried snooping on their bluetooth data stream, but I suspect there is an authentication token the Software sends to the Hardware to allow bidirectional communication over bluetooth.
  3. If you're looking for an ODB-II reader to bring to salvage/auction, you might prefer one with a dongle, as it doesn't require a pairing step and will begin reading codes immediately.

    In terms of "fun projects", I was thinking it'd be cool to use ODB-II Mode 6 and visualize, in real-time, Scotty Kilmer's "How to Get Your Car to Pass the Emissions Test (Life Hack)".
u/jd101506 · 1 pointr/saab

I have the stock dp for now, and a BSR 2.5in stainless. Car sounds almost stock at idle and under throttle it sounds a little more grunty. Pretty nice.

DICs tend to crack, and the cores in them suffer afterwards. I mean, it's a piece of composite plastic that is sitting on the head of your turbocharged engine... it will get up past 80c on hot days so you gotta expect some damage. It's a great piece of technology as it allows knock control and other engine adjustments RIGHT at the plugs, but it's poorly designed considering where it sits and how it sits there. It's the number 1 thing that can leave you stranded while driving. I've been lucky and have only had one go bad in over 60k of T7 driving (two different t7 cars) but it's a total gamble. Sometimes they will drop within 10k, sometimes within 100k. I've been very lucky considering I only got a CEL from an extra knock sensor. Highly recommend and OBDII reader. Just to pull the code. If you have an android phone ge the torque app and a bluetooth adapter. You can monitor engine health with it and check/clear CELs. http://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-PIC18F2480-diagnostics-compatible/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=sr_1_1?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1376322147&sr=1-1&keywords=obd2+bluetooth

I drive a 00 9-5 LPT that I have converted to be an aero. Turbo, up-pipe, exhaust, brakes, clutch, and a few other mods. Flashed a 00 Aero bin and then the e85 map.

There are a few benefits of the tune. First and foremost being the diagnostics. if you push both the -/+ at the same time on the SID you can access diagnostics. This is activated in T7 Suite and is included in my e85 package. Look here for an example of what kinda data can be displayed: http://www.saab-tuners.com/en/trionic-7/t7-suite-sid-info

Things of note:

  • amul = fueling information,
  • tair = intake temps (Important for tuning and IC info),
  • meng = engine torque in nM,
  • teng = engine temp,
  • mair and mreq = mair is air actually delivered, and mreq is the requested air. This is SUPER important to find boost leaks.
  • miss = engine misfires and there's another value for knocks

    Other benefits are the ability to run e85 if you want to. We dont' have any around here, but traveling you may run across one. The increase is hp and torque is an absolute benefit. I find my idle and temps are lower with this tune. Also it evens out the power delivery vastly. Very nice torque curve. You can see the graph here: http://imgur.com/a/L26oR Top image is stage 1, stock is below. I also find that my throttle response and low end power (Where I usually drive the car) is far better. I'm not a racer, so I tend to stay 2-4k and there's a decent amount of torque there to move me around town.

    Reasons for tuning are my own, but the diagnostics and power increase were the main ones. Having a fun DD helps too.
u/MagneticGray · 3 pointsr/fordfusion

CarBridge is a tweak for jailbroken iPhones. It lets you run nearly any app over CarPlay. It also lets you adjust the number of icons on the CarPlay home screen. I just got it up and running tonight so I’m still playing around with it. I wasn’t able to get PS4 Remote Play working but Splashtop works perfectly so I can access my desktop PC from my car stereo, which is awesome. I'm totally going to Photoshop something using Sync 3 haha. YouTube was my primary reason for installing CarBridge but the Xfinity app and VLC also work great. Looking forward to being able to watch live TV and even recordings from my DVR while I’m stuck in traffic.

A few others I tried are weather radar, iMessages that let you actually see the messages, the camera app, and an OBDII app that communicates with my ELM327 Wi-Fi OBDII reader. Now that I know it works I’m going to choose an app that shows gauges (those all cost money) so I can see stuff like oil pressure, boost, voltage, etc. when I’m running the car hard. Oh, and of course, Apollo for Reddit works as it should.

All the apps perform quickly and the image actually looks pretty crisp and detailed in person. These pics aren't doing it justice (had to use my iPad) but I was really impressed by how sharp it was when I used 720 or 1080 resolution in YouTube. I also highly recommend this glass screen protector to improve the look and feel of the screen. It’s like a night and day difference vs the fingerprint magnet plastic factory touchscreen. Much less glare too.

The one downside I noticed is that Sync 3 doesn't support multi-touch but overall I’m really happy with the results. Well worth the $4.99 for CarBridge. Let me know if you can think of any other apps that would be fun to try.

u/Lulxii · 2 pointsr/VEDC

I do a lot of shadetree mechanic stuff, and my toolkit is relatively small and 99% from harbor freight. Invaluable tools for me:

  • Dewalt impact wrench. ($100) Fuck the drill, get the driver and these ($5). This makes zipping things together and apart super easy. Not necessary, but holy shit is it my most used tool. I'm lazy and this saves a ton of time.
  • 3/8" plastic harbor freight socket wrench. ($10) This is a ton better than any steel wrench I've ever had. Great mechanism, ergonomic, light, non-corrosive.
  • Bit set ($23) comboed with the impact driver and one of these ($2), and you're set for any screw/socket situation you could possibly have. I use this so much that I should probably have 2...
  • Breaker bar ($20) for anything that the socket wrench can't handle on its own. Direct competitor to Snap-on for $20
  • Socket set ($30). I don't think I've ever used anything outside of these besides some small jobs where either a special deep socket or thin walled socket was required. Make sure you get an adapter set ($5) so all your tools can work with any sized sockets. While you're at it, get some extensions ($15) and universal joints ($7). These are invaluable when you need them and very useful otherwise. Usefulness factor makes them a necessity in my book
  • I love my channel locks ($7). I don't carry box end wrenches. I've never been like, "fuck, I NEED a box end wrench." I think that anybody who needs them is a damn liar. These channel locks are every crescent wrench combined into one tool. They also serve as pliers, wire strippers, etc. etc. I might upgrade to vice grips one day, but these are still my go-to pliers.
  • Similar to channel locks, some adjustable wrenches ($9) are musts for the same reason channel locks are necessary.
  • Multimeter for electronics. This thing does it all. I want to say it even does continuity which isn't too common.
  • non-harbor freight torque wrench ($57). This one is a direct competitor to snap-on as well. There's a 1/2" drive one that goes up to 150 ft-lbs which can get you by 95% of jobs for ($38) if savings if the penultimate goal. I'd splurge if I were you though on the 250 ft-lb wrench.
  • THE BEST TOOL EVER ($5) Whether you dropped something into the engine bay, need to grab a socket way over 'there', or whatever, this tool is so useful.
  • Jackstands ($50 for 4) - and any jack. I have a nice racing jack, but it's definitely not necessary. Scissor jacks can access tight areas, but bottle jacks are more reliable. I don't care what jack you use, use jackstands BEFORE YOU KILL YOURSELF in the stupidest way possible. Boaters use lifejackets, construction guys use hardhats, mechanics use jackstands. These are your personal protective equipment and they are designed to save your life. Make sure it's rated for your vehicle and carry 2 if you can, but carry at least 1 if you have any inclination to get under your vehicle for any reason. The average person might not need one day-to-day, but the average person shall not go under their car without one. Rant over.
  • OBD 2 engine communication device ($17). I can read and clear engine codes using my phone. I can check O2 sensor voltages, I can check battery voltage, boost pressure, vacuum pressure, my 1/4 mile time, etc. etc. etc. This tool is extremely useful. I consider it necessary given its pricepoint and utility.


    I don't believe I've missed anything. These are my automotive essentials and are valued at $360 new. Skip the convenient impact driver and you're at $260. I want to make it clear that you can do 99% of any vehicle work using these tools and these tools only. Whether you're changing your tires or dropping the transmission, these will get you 99% of the way there. Most of these have been side-by-side compared with professional grade tools and are very competitive performance-wise. Cost wise, it's no contest. These tools win.


u/breastblessed · 8 pointsr/Android

I just use my retired Galaxy Note 2 with a lightweight lollipop ROM (liquid smooth) and this

~ mount Only $10 and free one day shipping if you are a prime member. It won’t open any wider than a note 2 but it holds securely to both the phone and the dashboard even in this 0 degree weather outside right now. Wish I could leave my phone out in the cold too. I hate North Idaho.

~ Dashcam - I use Dailyroads Voyager It uses cyclic recording so it can keep overwriting and not using up too much space. It can run in the background while I use waze, music, OK Google, etc. You can also set it to save the video when it senses x amount of G forces. Or you can tap the screen at any time to save the video… It has tons of features and the shocking part is it’s free! Since work provides me with unlimited data tethering on my phone I also utilize it’s cloud backup feature.

~ OBD II - For car diagnostics reading I use BAFX OBD2 I was literally shocked at how easy this was to plug in and pair to my phone! For close to $25 I had tons of information about how my car is “feeling” right in front of me. I’ve only tested a few but I stuck with Dash Some of the things it tells me are engine temperature, engine load, speed, MPG, coolant temperature, RPM, air/fuel ratio… anyway, my favorite part of the app is how it keeps track of my trips.. locations, statistics, where I last parked. Love it.

Things I’m still working on are getting an inverter in my trunk to power a small/cheap router and raspberry pi plus small ssd so that in the case of theft my dashcam app could save to the ssd in my trunk to catch the filthy thief. Looks like there is enough room behind the plastic cover where they keep the tire changing tools to keep this equipment hidden from sight. If anyone has better ideas please let me know. Maybe someday I will impress a nice guy ………

u/guitarinjustin · 2 pointsr/cars

If you have a smartphone I would recommend a wireless OBII scanner!. I can't speak for this particular model, but mostly they're all cheap and do an OK job.

I would get some sort of universal emergency kit, such as a JustinCase! or something similar. You will probably never use it, but it is great to have when you do need it. It's also small and compact so it won't take up much space. You can also fit a few more basic tools in this bag if you wished.

I would also recommend having an envelope with your insurance, registration, and possibly a photocopy of your license(I forget my wallet often and it's nice to have a copy just in case). You can laminate these if you so wish. You wont lose your important stuff and it wont get ruined either!

I would also recommend doing your own maintenance on your car. You get to learn a little more how it works and best of all you save money! Youtube has many videos on basic car maintenance. If you ever do more complex work I would recommend picking up a Haynes or Chilton repair manual for your vehicle.

I went from literally knowing nothing about cars to rebuilding engines. I'm not a mechanic and don't make any money from this. I just value being able to fix something myself. It takes time, but a great way to get started is to learn how engines work on youtube or whatever. Once you have a general understanding of how an engine works you can diagnose problems much more easily.

u/Go0m · 8 pointsr/FiestaST

Hey all, I got a bunch of info from here and the forums, so I thought I would give back and drop a few links.

First is the roof rack. I think the rola roof rack is the best looking and ends up being one of the cheapest.

Next up is the cargo box. I thought getting one this long would look stupid, but it's way better than I imagined. The rocketbox 11 is one of Thule's cheapest and big enough to fit my huge board in. No noticable drop in mpg, either - hovering barely above 33.

The backup camera is a fantastic upgrade. I followed this post and dug into the forums posted there. I would double check the apim codes because it's a tad dangerous and I didn't use the same exact codes as u/brbauer2 (I have the 2016 w/ sync 3). Shoutout, by the way, the album was super helpful. Also, the pins we inserted to the wiring harness didn't connect with the head unit, so I shredded a small amount of foil to bridge those connections.

Canying Car Trunk Handle Rear...

BAFX Products Bluetooth...

And finally, I like having my windows down in the rain, so I got them smoker vents.

Maybe someday I'll get that accessport/intercooler and a rear motor mount, but I'm loving it as it is!

You all bought awesome cars, thanks for the help, catch you later.

u/mxdcm · 3 pointsr/e39

Clean looking model :) congratulations! Love that you have sunroof / moonroof (different countries - different names - same stuff).

Waiting for the interior pictures.

Here are few link where you can find info and parts in case if you will need; searching by VIN number, only the last 7 characters, CE7....

bmwfans.info and realoem.com for parts number

bimmer.work for equipment details, with which the car came from factory

Others; using apps

Torque pro or Torque lite - free version to use together with an OBD-II bluetooth scanner for quick diagnostics, are not expensive and can give you some quick info.

Another good app which I tried, a little bit more expensive, is Carly for BMW they have a free lite version as well Carly for BMW Lite only that you will need to have a smartphone which knows USB-OTG and a cable from them (from carly for bmw) adapter search which can be 30€ carly for bmw website

I tried them both, torque and carly, and I would say that they are good enough, can give you informations, faults (errors code) and you can search by error code number to have an idea what can be the issue; as well can clear faults.

Carly for bmw knows coding as a plus, you can configure your car to do other few things, such as automatically locking the doors when going over a certain speed, follow me home lights on time for a certain time, keeping pressed locking button from the key fob to fold the mirrors (+ windows to go up), keeping pressed unlocking button from the key fob for the mirrors to go down; plus other few stuff (can't remember). For a car from the years 2000s is having few nice features.

Take a look at youtube video 5 Series - E39 - Video Handbook (40mins video) and you can learn about them.

You will have to prepare for the future, in case if they will fail, about kit repairs.

In US you have German auto solutions with DIY instructions, tools, kits; very useful stuff.

Since recently I had issues with this hose 11531705223 Radiator Hose which I had it replaced and just blew (snapped) after 1 year when I was going up the mountain, they are know for failing and can leave you stranded; give it an eye inspection.

What else can I continue recommending you... uhm...

Take care of it and again, congratulations :)


u/hagdiggity · 1 pointr/mazda

I'm not familiar with wireless scanners but I would be curious if the added cost is worth the convenience. This one http://www.amazon.com/BlueDriver-Bluetooth-Professional-iPhone%C2%AE-Android/dp/B00652G4TS is around $100 and looks like it has a lot of features that you might not necessarily need/want if you're just looking for something that will read codes. Poking around on Amazon some more might find you a better price tool with less features.

If you don't mind the plug-in tools I would highly recommend http://www.amazon.com/Autel-MaxiScan-MS300-Diagnostic-Vehicles/dp/B001LHVOVK/ref=pd_sbs_auto_3?ie=UTF8&refRID=16NHDV5KSVQW086RGHD0 - I bought one to troubleshoot a recurring CEL and was pretty happy with the price/ease of use. The Autel tool only reads and clears codes; you'll have to google the actual code to figure out what it is. Good luck!

u/Undercover_Hitler · 3 pointsr/AskMen
  • Learn how to change a tire. Do it in your driveway or in a parking lot on your own. It is a lot better to know how to do it right when you need to. And it is much easier to learn how on a warm sunny day than on the side of the road in the rain, or the middle of the night.

  • Keep a tire pressure gauge on you. If your tires appear low, check the pressure. Tip: Sheetz gas stations (at least the ones in Virginia) have free air (most gas stations do). Their systems have a digital pressure setting and an auto-cutoff. Just set the pressure, and it will stop filling when it gets there. Otherwise use your pressure gauge to dial it in. Most cars will feature the tire pressure for front and rear tires on a sticker in the front door frame.

  • Water will work as coolant in the summer. If it is colder outside, you will want to buy antifreeze. Most gas stations will sell it.

  • If a warning light on your dash comes on (check engine, oil light, alternator light, etc) you will need to get it checked/fixed soon. Check engine lights can sometimes be nothing (sometimes it is just a loose gas cap), but it is always good to get it checked. More on that in a minute. If a warning light on your dash starts flashing, that is a serious problem. Pull over, turn the car off, and call a service station

  • You can save yourself some money by getting an OBD2 Reader. These read your check engine codes and tell you why your check engine light is on. Some shops will do this for you for free, some will charge $20. Most corporate owned auto stores will let you borrow theirs in exchange for your drivers license. Personally, I say just drop the $20 and get one, it saves time later on. They sell ones that are much more expensive, up to thousands of dollars. You don't need these; these give "live" data of the car's sensors and other things that won't help anyone other than a mechanic. A small $20 one will read the code and probably clear it if you want.

    Simple run down on how to use them (should be in the instruction book). 1. Plug it into the car, with the car turned off. (The plug will almost always be under the dash) 2. Turn the key to the ON position. (Do not start the car, just one click before it. Like if you wanted to turn the radio on but not start the engine) 3. The code reader will usually say READING for a few seconds and give you one or more codes. They will look something like P0430. Cheap readers usually have books with them that will tell you what they mean. More expensive ones ($100-$200) will define the code. If you don't have the book, just google the code.

    Depending on the code, you may or may not understand what it means. This is okay. If you google the definition of the code, you will almost always find someone describing the general idea of what is going on. Again, you might not be able to use this info to repair the car yourself, but it can give you an idea of how serious a problem is, and may prevent you from being ripped off by mechanics.

  • Anticipate maintenance and repairs. Tires are expensive. Thankfully, they don't need to be replaced all that often, but changing 4 tires at once can easily be $300 bucks for cheap new tires. Avoid used tires. Keep $100 saved up to get the oil changed. Newer oils need to be changed less often, but the shop should advise you when to come back. (I'm assuming you aren't planning on changing your own oil any time soon) Nothing is worse than knowing your oil is dirty and overdue for a change but not having the money to make it happen, and old dirty oil will shorten the life of your engine.

  • Every 6-8 months, when you get gas, go into the gas station and buy fuel system cleaner. It will look similar to this. Simply pour the entire bottle into your gas tank and then fill up your tank to the top. Also, and this is very important! DO NOT PUT THIS IN A DIESEL VEHICLE

  • Finally, find a good mechanic/service station. Ask locals around your town. Check reviews. The difference between a good one and a bad one can be hundreds, if not thousands. Before I learned about cars, I went to several mechanics for my first car.

    One never updated me on their progress, charged super high prices, and recommended unnecessary repairs. Then I went to one that would come out and talk to me 2 or 3 times throughout the repair (giving me updates, letting me know of other problems he noticed, etc), he would never perform an additional repair without taking me into the shop and showing me exactly what he was talking about. At one point, he ordered brake parts from down the street because I thought I needed new parts. Turned out it was a whole different issue with different parts. He happily sent them back, free of charge to me, and walked me through what he was going to do. I still take my cars to him when they have "gremlins" that I can't figure out. Usually they charge a pretty big service fee per hour, but from the very first time he charges me 1 hour less than whatever it takes him. His reason is always "I wanted to figure it out as bad as you did. Forget the money, this thing became my puzzle."

    But I've been rambling on that. Point is, find a good mechanic and stick with them. It will make a huge difference.
u/JacePriester · 3 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

Oooh oooh, I know this one!

So Matraxia is pretty much right, whatever is cheap, but I'll give you some more info you should know.

Pretty much all of the OBDII scanners out there, at least for consumer use, are based on the ELM327 IC. The ELM defines a serial, text-based protocol as an input, so you (or an app like Torque) give it a series of commands just like it were a modem, and then it handles communicating with your vehicle via several different protocols, all pretty much transparently. That's why one program like Torque can talk to pretty much every vehicle, via the ELM chip's magic.

The thing about that is, the firmware for the ELM chip got leaked a long time ago and there have been unlicensed Chinese copies made ever since. The real ELM has had upgrades since then, and the Chinese version has sort of kept up, but in the knockoffs some things work right and some things don't. They're frequently slower, buggier, or don't support certain commands, compared to the real ELM chips.

So how do you tell which you're getting? Mostly the price. The knockoffs are cheap, like this one:

No way that's a real one. Not for 4 bucks. That said, I have no idea what the cutoff is where you might consider it legit.

Personally, I have this one:

I have sent it a number of commands over the serial terminal to verify that it's a real ELM327 chip and it has passed all of my tests. That said, it could still just be a good knockoff with a lot of the ELM's newer commands implemented. I really don't know for sure.

Either way, works great.

As for gathering data and exporting to excel.. that has nothing to do with the OBDII adapter you get and everything to do with the software you run on your phone. I have no idea of Torque or others support this but it seems like they should.

u/Kadin2048 · 2 pointsr/nova

The answer to your question as-asked is that VA Tire for $114 is probably having a tech do a diagnostic and give you an estimate, which might or might not take a fair amount of time (some really generic codes, like an evap system one, can require a fair bit of testing to get down to the point where you can generate an estimate). Jiffy Lube is probably just scanning the code, which is only a few seconds of work, and if it happens to turn out to be something they can fix they'll offer to do it, but if it's not they're not going to go any further. JL is not exposing themselves to any risk of spending more than a couple of minutes, therefore they can offer that service for free. So that's the short answer.

I personally don't like JL (see my other comment if you care, it's sort of a YMMV situation), but there's nothing wrong with what they're offering. A free code scan like that -- which you can get at a lot of places, including most auto parts stores (or a buddy with an OBDII scanner, they are pretty cheap now) -- isn't a bad starting point if you've got a trouble light on the dash and need to pass emissions or something. Sometimes the code will tell you pretty much exactly what's going on and what needs to be done, and you can decide from there who you want to have fix it (or even DIY, if you're comfortable with whatever needs to be done). If the scan alone isn't conclusive, then I'd go to a real shop... and probably be prepared to pay a diagnostic fee if I have them diagnose the issue and don't have them then go and fix it; that seems only fair for their time.

Depending on what's going on that's prompting the question, you may want to ask or look at previous questions asking for recommendations of repair shops in N. VA... I don't have anything specifically against VA Tire, but I haven't heard anyone ever say that they were particularly awesome, either, and there are plenty of very well-regarded shops around who I'd probably go to first.

u/paperwaller · 4 pointsr/Justrolledintotheshop

My friend has this one and it seems to work well enough actually. I'm going to order one for myself right now. I have a magnetic phone mount that goes in my CD slot that works really well due to the layout in my car. I might use a spare phone to run as extra gauges and a music player. You could get a BlueDriver but those are about $100 though I hear they are really awesome. Though honestly for just $10 it can't hurt to at least try it out.

Edit: For $20 this one looks to be a bit nicer. I'm ordering one for myself right now. Thanks for reminding me. These are really handy tools and just plain fun to play around with.

u/Honey_Bunches · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

It's the 4-cylinder. The original parts were Denso, but I'm pretty confident that I got the correct Dorman parts. It's a '99 Camry LE L4. EGR Valve, Modulator, VSV. None of the vacuum hose in the VSV/EGR/Modulator system is clogged. I actually checked the 5 or 6 hoses while I was replacing everything. I also sprayed some Gumout Carb Cleaner into into the intake when I took the EGR off. Cleaned the EGR pipe too.

This is the scanner I'm using. I'm also using the Torque app on my phone. As you can see, it offers some nice monitoring. I glanced at that Vacuum Boost graph while I was driving and I think I remember it sitting at around 15 when I was idling and dropping to 3 or 4 once I got going. I didn't check out the O2 graphs though. I'll log some graphs tomorrow and do some real testing.

Thanks so much for your awesome response. Troubleshooting this has been so frustrating and you've given me something to do.

u/odd84 · 9 pointsr/leaf

First, some background: The percentage display on the dashboard is only loosely related to the actual state of charge of the battery, because the battery management system reserves a buffer at both the bottom and top end of the charge range to protect the longevity of the battery. When you charge up to 100%, there's 38-39 kWh in the battery rather than 40 kWh. The highest I've gotten the true SoC (state of charge) of the battery to when it showed 100% on the dashboard is 98.2%, but 95-97% has been more common. Similarly, when it says 4% on the dashboard, there's a good bit more than 4% of actual charge still in the battery. It's like how you can drive many miles after the meter reads "E" (empty) in a gas car. After 0% it'll show "--%" if it's like previous year Leafs while driving quite a few more miles, then you'll get a turtle icon and reduced power for a final mile or two to safely pull over. At that point, the car will stop moving, but there's actually some kWh of power still in the pack, because running a lithium ion battery down to real 0% permanently damages it and the car won't let you do that.

THAT SAID, I am slightly concerned about what you've said. I did a 60 mile highway drive yesterday with the A/C on full blast in 90 degree weather and >70 MPH most of the way, and still averaged 4 miles per kWh. I don't think I've ever gotten only 3.2 miles per kWh in the new Leaf. I've had many trips with more than 5 miles per kWh on 35-45 MPH roads. I am easily getting the 150 miles per charge, so if you're only getting 80-120, that sounds wrong.

This sounds silly, but what are your tire pressures at? The difference between underinflated and overinflated tires can easily be 10% or more on your miles/kWh efficiency. I have mine at 42 PSI right now. When a new car shows up at a dealership, one of the things they do to prep it for sale is to let air out of the tires, because they're shipped overinflated. If they let out too much, you'll want to pump them back up above 40 PSI (well above the 36 PSI the sticker says to inflate them to, I know) and go on another long drive to see if that improves your efficiency.

If that doesn't work, the next thing I'd do is get on Amazon and order this OBDII scanner and download the Leaf Spy Pro app on your phone. That will let you see the real State of Charge in kWh for your car whenever you want, which will help you figure out if there's a real issue here.

u/jkxs · 3 pointsr/SubaruForester

I apologize in advance for this long post. None of these are "must gets", but they are what I got for my 2016 Premium forester. I'm posting this for my own future reference as well as to help some people who are wondering what accessories might be good for their new forester. I highly recommend ordering from Jackie from Annapolis Subaru @ 443-837-1422 as she can get you some good prices on the subaru accessories as well as WeatherTech products! I saved on WeatherTech shipping costs (~$20) by ordering through Jackie and the warranty is the same as if I had bought them through their website.

Please note that some of these accessory links are for my specific car year, model and configuration. I have a 2016 Premium forester without eyesight (affects the Covercraft/heatshield sunshade - they also have eyesight compatible sunshades!).

Also, I personally didn't get my windows tinted, but I think that is something that you should seriously consider doing :)

Speaker kit

Tweeter kit

WeatherTech DigitalFit floorliner (1st & 2nd row)

WeatherTech cargo/trunk liner (without bumper protector)

Weather Tech TechCare floorliner and floormat Cleaner/Protector Kit

Gorilla mud flaps

Covercraft's UVS100 sunscreen - use promo code FREESHIP

Exterior Auto Dimming Mirror w/ Approach Lighting

Luggage Compartment Cover (manual rear gate)

Rear bumper cover

Auto-Dimming Mirror with Compass and HomeLink

Rear Seat Back Protector

Two Home Depot 5 gallon homer bucket

Heatshield sunshade (driver/passenger, second row, rear windshield, sunroof) - note that their website only shows only one side window (driver/passenger), you need to call in to ask them to add the second row side window ones - on my invoice it says part #1425S-A and #1425S-B

Antigravity Batteries AG-XP-10 Multi-Function Power Supply and Jump Starter (check eBay to see if priced cheaper)

Viair 77P Portable Compressor Kit (check eBay to see if priced cheaper)

Amazon stuff:

EZ Pass Holder for VA Flex

Aux cable

Stickershield (parking stickers, etc)

Dropstop seat gap filler (driver/passenger side)

Door panel removal kit (for speaker kit install)

Two grit guards

Microfiber Drying towel

Microfiber cloths (3 pack)

Car wash shampoo

Wheel brush

Resqme (window breaker/seatbelt cutter)

Wheel cleaner

Microfiber wash mitt

Reindeer costume for Christmas

Headrest coat hanger

Road reflective triangles

Duct tape

Odor eliminator

Tire air pressure gauge

OBDII Scanner (Bluetooth)

First aid kit

u/stealstea · 5 pointsr/VictoriaBC

I bought a used Leaf 2 years ago from a private seller. Interestingly enough used prices for Leafs are up since then. After driving the car for 2 years the car is worth the same or more than when I bought it.

Advice for buying now:

  1. Buy an ODB adapter and the LeafSpy app https://www.amazon.ca/LELink-Bluetooth-Energy-OBD-II-Diagnostic/dp/B00QJRYMFC or similar
  2. Test the vehicle before buying it and check the Battery State of Health (SoH) and Hx values in LeafSpy. Higher is better. Motorize will give you LeafSpy output for their Leafs but Campus Nissan will not. Their official Nissan battery report is useless.
  3. If you can find a Leaf that came from Washington / Seattle that's generally better than California because the heat is what causes battery degradation so those from the pacific northwest are usually in better shape.
  4. In Victoria Motorize are the better dealer but prices tend to be a bit higher than campus nissan but they are more honest. Cross shop both of them. If you have the time you can likely find even slightly better deals in Vancouver.

    Enjoy! I'm liking mine after 2 years. Battery not as good as a Tesla for sure for less than a quarter of the price I'm ok with that.
u/sumthingcool · 3 pointsr/leaf

This is the ODB2 BT I got, works great: https://www.amazon.com/Panlong-Bluetooth-Diagnostic-Scanner-Android/dp/B00PJPHEBO/

Take a look at this for the L2 charging: http://www.instructables.com/id/313CONVERTING-A-2013-LEAF-LEVEL-1-12AMP-CHARGER-TO/

It is super easy to convert your existing L1 "charger" (it's not really a charger) to be both L2 and L1 capable, then you just need a 240v outlet (which is ~$100-$200 for an electrician to install, easy to DIY as well)

I have yet to do any public charging, but just signed up for a ChargePoint account, thanks to http://roev.org/ the account should work at ChargePoint, Blink, and EVgo station which is 90%+ of public stations. Maybe someone else can comment how well it works and if it's still a good idea to sign up for multiple provider accounts.

I also really like the Leaf Manager app: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=no.darkspawns.leafmanager&hl=en

Way faster and more useful than the Nissan provided app.

u/Kooriki · 9 pointsr/vancouver

I bought a car from the auto auction in the late 90's (CAAG in Surrey). Back then it was a risk v reward thing as you're never sure exactly what you're getting. You can browse the cars beforehand, start them up but they are packed in so tight you can't really drive them.

Plenty of deals to be had but its largely influenced by how popular it is that day. Best times is low season (Oct-Feb), and if it's raining. Mid week was better deals than weekends.

To judge prices, ignore blue book; Check Craigslist. Craiglist is the market.

Buy an ODB2 sensor to check diagnostics. (Depending on how old the car is, it may not work). Before every auction the auctioneer will call out any declarations and it will be on a big board (out of province, salvage, not legal etc)

The atmosphere is hectic and crazy and confusing and exciting, but once you've got a couple of times and see how it goes its not bad at all. If you want to bid on a car, have a price in mind and put your hand up if the price is right. An auction worker will come over to you and call the bids out for you so you're not confused by all the hand signals and yelling. If there is a reserve price on the car and you don't meet it, you can negotiate on the spot with the seller (standing near the auctioneer) if they are willing to take less than the reserve.

Try not to feel intimidated or bullied. Get a price in your mind and work with that.

Last note: You're going to have to settle price and insurance quickly, but they do have a broker on site to do transfers/reg/taxes

Hopefully this helps. My experience is close to 20 years old, but I spent a TON of time at the auction place and got a real good feel for how it worked at that time.

u/KingClam2 · 1 pointr/CasualConversation

Sure :)

This is Chrisfix YT channel

This guy is great... he seems to know EXACTLY how much to say. He never leaves out anything I need to see or be told, but at the same time, he doesn't waste time telling me unnecessary stuff. I think this balance is REALLY hard for most uploaders to manage, but he does it masterfully. It's truly unfortunate he doesn't have a video for every single topic. "Oh cool, there's a ChrisFix video for this," is a great feeling. I instantly know it will be smooth-sailing.

This is ErictheCarGuy YT channel

At first I found this guy to be a little intimidating or advanced for my level of knowledge. Occasionally I need outside reference to understand some things in his videos. However, even though I originally tended to click out of his videos when I stumbled into them... he eventually became my other favorite channel. I quickly became fed up with videos that wasted my time by being redundant/slow/irrelevant/incorrect.

And THIS is the best $20 you'll ever spend

With that you can use your phone and an app to check why the check engine light is on... and way more. If you happen to drive a Ford or Nissan then "Car Gauge Pro" is the app you want... $9 and it does way more than the more popular apps like Torque Pro.

u/5hiftyy · 10 pointsr/mazdaspeed3

The CX-7 turbo has a smaller compressor wheel as well as a smaller compressor wheel housing. This gives you a better low-end torque curve as well as faster spool-up and throttle response. This sort of turbo brings the torque needed for a small SUV with a turbo. The Speed3/6 K04 has a slightly larger compressor wheel and housing, which leads to higher top-end boost translating to more top-end power while sacrificing low end torque and response.

Typically, all the aftermarket turbos are listed as fitting the Speed3/6, CX-7 becuase they are all bolt-in replacements. The problem is if you get a CX-7 turbo, it'll still fit, but your power band WILL change, just like you're describing.

For a short-term problem solver, I might suggest getting a Bluetooth OBD-II scanner and looking at your boost levels. No, it's not the best solution for logging, but it'll do what you need it to. I know my speed3 hits max boost between 3500-3750 RPM; being ~15psi in gears 3 & 4. Why don't you try a 3rd gear pull and see where the motor hits max boost, what that max boost number is, and what RPM it's hit at? This is honestly the only thing I can think of with respect to diagnosing on the cheap, without an AP or pulling the turbo. You may also want to ask the mechanic again for the OEM serial number of the replacement they put in, and compare it to the CX7 vs. Speed3/6 turbos.

The stock MS3/MS6 K04 is typically serialized as K0422-881/882.
The stock CX-7 K04 is serialized as K0422-582.

u/TheLiqourCaptain · 3 pointsr/BMW

50's Kid (Super Awesome): https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCml-eeSLJZ38Q5_sUnUXrZw

Shop Life TV (Pretty effen gewd): https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5jnm5CEnLSEmoQ-ktgAj6g

Well the people in the forums are the people with the problems, but that's not to say they aren't the most knowledgeable group of people about the e46. But the youngest E46 is 12 years old, so unless it's a garage kept car from an old couple, it'll have to be fixed a little soon into your ownership. You'll be advised to do $300,000 in preventative maintenance when on the forums, don't. I love my car but I only paid $3,000 for mine had I done everything the forum members suggested I would've spent another $3,000 in repairs. Keep up on your plugs and coils. If I'm not mistaken the 328s and 325s have transmissions made by GM and no one cares for them, so wait for a 330. I'm sure I'll get corrected on the transmissions but whatevs enjoy the plethora of links.

A Bosche fuel pump from Amazon is $130 and the gasket is $20.



The exact fuel filter $60:

OEM plugs are $35, again Amazon.

DISA rebuild kit is $80 (DO THIS ONE ASAP, It's the one thing I always tell people, it'll prevent a steel pin from falling into a cylinder and ruining your engine) I bought mine from G.A.S. German Auto Sport I think. I love their warranty, if my DISA fails they'll give me that $80 towards one of their DISA units, like $400

Coolant system:
Expansion tank - $30 (Amazon) - known as the most likely failure

Radiator -$150 (AutoZone)
Lower radiator hose - $30 (Advance)

Temp sensor in lower hose - $8 (Amazon)

Upper radiator hose - $30 (AutoZone)
Water pump - $55 (AutoZone)
Thermostat - $55 (AutoZone)

Transmission intercooler thermostat - $16 (Amazon)


I was able to remove the radiator without being about to tell the water pump had an issue. Installed the new radiator, gave my fan a wiggle and then knew I had replaced two hoses, an expansion tank, and a radiator for nothing. Cost: confidence as myself as a mechanic and an engineer and $295 (didn't replace the temp sensor or thermostat, and I was lucky enough to reuse the transmission intercooler thermostat!!!!!!11!1!!11!!)

I paid $90 for a pack of coils 40,000 miles ago. The entire CCV is $55, you guessed it, Amazon.


One pair of HID headlights - $28

For two years of ownership starting at 153,000 miles and currently at 197,000, 8 months of driving 110 miles a day, five days a week, and now I drive 800 miles a week.

The hardest on this list are the fuel filter (unless you have access to a lift, I hate putting my car on stands) and the CCV, to replace the CCV you have to remove the intake manifold.

The DISA takes 10 minutes if you take the time to drink a beer MAKE SURE YOU BUY A KIT THAT INCLUDES A NEW GASKET

If you have problems head to here or the forums, I feel like I've written a book, but I spent forever tracking a couple issues only to find out it was the plugs. Check the plugs first.

Essential tools:

OBD2 WIFI adapter: $20

Regular socket set: $73


(5mm to 16mm or so, and includes bits you'll really want a wide flathead, Torx 25 or 30 for the cabin air filter mounting screws, and Philips, double check what this one includes)

Torque wrench: $35

6”-8" Socket extension: $10

Fan removal tool set - $20

Including all tools that's $850 Hope this helps, the car is really easy to work on, I enjoy driving it. One last piece of advice never short trip your car, especially in cold weather, you could fill the CCV with mayo and it could lead to hydrolocking/self destruction of the engine. If you live South of Pennsylvania you shouldn't have to worry too much, some people put an ounce or so of Seafoam into the CCV a month. You don't need to follow these links to the tee but they should help.

u/bovinitysupreme · 2 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

I'm not /u/gingican but I can provide the comparison:

  1. Generic one that looks like this: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00K4SVS2M -- mine was from Harbor Freight (they don't have it anymore) and was orange but otherwise identical. Fine for pulling standard codes and resetting Check Engine Light.

  2. Scangauge II -- mainly used as a gauge but good for pulling/resetting basic codes and getting freeze frame data. Obviously, can provide a bunch of data (as intended for daily gauge use). With a lot of work (programming XGauge codes) it could get a little more data too.

  3. BAFX bluetooth OBD2 tool http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005NLQAHS is nice. It's just hardware, it works great, but what's really nice is Torque. Torque can store/export sensor data, integrate with GPS data, display all manner of gauges and graphs, etc. My only complaint is I can't access ABS codes (specifically on my GM). Also, bluetooth itself is nice, the device is easily plugged in and no fooling with wires, and I can interface with the phone that I already carry anyway.
u/YarrJay · 6 pointsr/ft86


  • Nexus 7 2013 w/ Timur's kernel (still in closed beta - open for donors)
  • Custom 3d printed housing
  • Alpine KTP-445U 4-channel Power Pack Amplifier
  • USB OTG Cable - Modified to fit
  • DC-DC Converter
  • Behringer UCA202 USB DAC
  • Bluetooth OBD2 Adapter - For getting real-time data into the Torque app
  • Add-a-fuse
  • Ground loop isolator ** Item still needs to be tested. This was purchased to hopefully eliminate a popping noise i get when first powering on the system

    Must Have Apps

  • GMD Gesture Control - Since i have no physical volume control buttons anymore GMD gesture control allows me to setup custom gestures like a 2-finger swipe to access volume control.

    Very excited to be ~95% complete with the install. A couple things left:

  • pull out the double-din housing i made and put the top on it which also includes a fan
  • address a 'popping' sound when turning on the system. possibly caused by the amp turning on before everything else? still seeking a solution here

    More than happy to try to answer questions for anyone else looking to do the same thing. Very happy with the outcome thus far.
u/BrownNote · 1 pointr/Jeep

It can be really useful for any lights that come on. If you see yourself fiddling with your own cars in the future and have a bit of disposable income you could get a nice high quality one like this which will do everything you need, or you could get something as simple as this one to take care of most of your needs. Autel is a good brand, I also have a bluetooth one that connects to any app on your phone (or computer) which can also be convenient, and depending on the app can be useful giving you real-time data.

Note that for this issue specifically, you'd need the former one I linked as the airbag system (SRS) and ABS system run on a specialiszed part of the system and can't be read by normal code readers. So if you just figure you won't do much you could get the $15 reader for quick troubleshooting and take it to Autozone like you're doing for when big things come up.

u/bmorocks · 2 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

I agree here. I bought my Bluetooth dongle from Amazon and use the Torque app, which is available only for Android. I do use the paid version, however, and it works wonderfully.

Beware of some of the cheap-o Bluetooth adapters on eBay as some might not be able to work with the CANBUS protocol. Just make sure the eBay seller has a decent return policy if you do buy on there.

The app + Bluetooth adapter combination works great for me. It makes it easy to look up codes and save them. If you want more information for a code than just a quick one line description, the app takes you to a website that displays more information about it. It's pretty slick, cheap, and more handy than some of the regular OBDII scanners with the built-in screens.

u/RW63 · 2 pointsr/prius

I have a Carista and didn't use my free trial until there was a code I really wanted to get more info about. (It gives "regular" codes without a subscription, but some of the more Toyota-specific, you have to get a subscription for it to display the last couple of digits, but it comes with a month free trial that you activate when you need it. Some of the other scanners may be different, but based upon a recommendation, it's the one I chose)

There are two batteries in a Prius. There's a 12v that boots the computer and whatnot. If that hasn't been replaced, it may be soon due (and replacing it could possibly get you a little better gas mileage), but it's only a couple of hundred bucks from an auto parts store and you may not need to replace it any time soon.

There's also the big hybrid or traction battery for the electric motor. ChrisFix has an excellent video about replacing it yourself, if that's something you'd like to do. Everybody will tell you it's cheaper to buy one from someone other than a dealer, but luckily I haven't had to do it and my older Prius has around 197k.

Of course, some people have had to replace them much earlier -- this forum or Priuschat.com could be a source of more info -- but I'd say the majority of people have had not. I've noticed a lot of Prii on the market around 116k to 130k. I believe it's because the battery warranty runs out at 100k, everywhere but California, where they require the same battery to be warrantied for 150k. And again, knock on wood, I have one pushing 200k.

u/Tqwen · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

In MPG? Not sure honestly, my gas gauge is inconsistent and I haven't driven it long distance in a few weeks. Though if you believe the gauge, 45 miles (40 highway) cost about a quarter tank, about 8.5 gallons. So that'd be roughly 5MPG but like I said, I don't know how much I trust it given how I only had a quarter tank to start with.

I was going to order this to have a look, would you recommend it, or a different one?

Sort of glad to hear that my goof probably isn't what caused it, and if it's just that emissions thing I won't bother for now since it got inspected in November last year, still plenty of time. But as soon as I'm done typing this I'll hit up AutoZone and see if they'll read my code. Where would I go about finding out what the code means?

Edit: P0137, O2 Sensor. I don't need an inspection sticker until September, so I'm no longer worried. I'll fix it when I get the chance. Thanks for the help!

u/Bloodhoof · 3 pointsr/leaf

Congratulations on your new Leaf! For anyone who doesn't have a similar device already, definitely plug in one of these and connect it with the LeafSpy app on your phone before your 7 days is up: https://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-34t5-Bluetooth-Android/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=pd_rhf_sc_p_img_9?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=5539G61R49EZH0220MRH

You want to be sure the battery is in good condition before you lose your opportunity to return the car. Good luck and enjoy your new Leaf!

u/yotimes · 1 pointr/BmwTech

Got a smart phone?

Reader 1

Reader 2

I don't know how shipping works to Canada, but it isn't too expensive of a product, and I am sure you can find it locally. It is a very handy tool.

That sounds like pretty good fuel econ lol. With my tune my 335i gets around 14-18 MPG

u/Drummerguy134 · 4 pointsr/androidafterlife

If your interested:

This app($10): https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.palmerperformance.DashCommand

Plus this($20): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00W0SDLRY/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_7TR-ybWNQ3SA6

Mount the S3 to your car, create a tasker profile to launch the app when it receives power (or connects to your stereo, etc.) And you get a wireless obd display =D I have this set up in my truck and I love it =)

Btw thanks for the reminder that this sub exists lol

u/rczrider · 1 pointr/FordFocus

FORscan is a program that allows you to make changes to the software on Ford and Mazda vehicles.

You must use an ELM327 OBDII adapter with MS/HS-CAN toggle switch. I recommend this OHP unit for $30. It's USB instead of Bluetooth, but unless you want to spend $70 on a quality BT unit, something like the OHP is your best bet. Furthermore, the Windows build of FORscan is the most stable, so you're probably going to use a laptop, anyway.

You will need the free Extended license of FORscan to enable Sport mode.

u/indyphil · 1 pointr/subaru

Amazon, $15
its down to $10 now


Mine works great but the quality seems iffy, there are many others on Amazon though that are similar prices. Mine has worked on my WRX, my Wifes Mazda, My friends Jeep and another Friends Ford Explorer. (I have become a go-to for getting CEL codes diagnosed)

then I actually purchased an app $5 called "torque" on the google play market (android). It allows me to read codes, display anything from boost or coolant temp to speed and RPM, and even has built in 0-60 tests and can use the phones accelerometer. You can also do data logging and record videos with the data embedded in the video. It will even do a map overlay using google maps and GPS data.

u/tralce · 2 pointsr/s10

Your best bet is to get a code reader, if you don't already have one. Here is a cheap one on Amazon. Failing that, your nearest VIP or other auto shop will usually read the code for you for free.

Once you know the diagnostic code it's throwing, you'll have a better idea what happened.

I'm leaning toward it not being a frozen anything; if something froze in the injectors, you have a lot of water in your gas, which would cause problems even when it's not cold out.

Very often rough idle is caused by MAF and O2 sensors. You also might be having issues in the ignition system, so check your plugs, wires, and distributor.

Good luck, and please come back to post more question, or if you found the solution, post that.

u/AWildAnonHasAppeared · 3 pointsr/cars

This seems to be the best one out there for $25


Everyone is talking about how awesome and essential it is. Mine should be arriving tomorrow too which is awesome. Good luck!

u/semiquantifiable · 3 pointsr/Acura

I imagine you mean the check engine light codes? I haven't used it on a TL, but I used something like this before on another Acura:

I imagine something like this would work the same, and doesn't require a phone or other device to pair it with:

So those should be able to tell you the specific codes needing attention as well as an option to clear them if you want. Of course, clearing doesn't do you any good if you don't do anything about the issues, it can very well come back. But once you have the specific codes, look them up online and see if you can pinpoint the possible issue and get it fixed. At the very least, you can know how serious it is.

u/on_the_nightshift · 2 pointsr/saab

My son's first car, bought this year, is an '06 9-3 2.0T as well!

These cars like to throw codes/check engine lights (CELs). Do yourself a favor and order one of these and buy "Torque Pro" from the Google Play/Apple app store. You'll have less than $30 in it all together, and it gives you some nice tools besides just the ability to read and reset codes.

As someone else said, google for any issues you have, they have likely been answered. Might as well make an account on saabcentral and saabnet. Lots of good info and knowledgeable people on those sites.

When (not if) you have to replace the coils, make sure you buy the right ones. ONLY the ones with the correct markings will work correctly. There are LOTS on the market that say they are correct, but aren't. Here's one that I know works (my son's car has 4 new ones). If you sign up for Advance's "SpeedPerks" membership (free), you'll get discounts, money back, etc. Order this stuff online, even if you're picking it up in store. Their website sometimes even has $40 off $100! Usually at least 20-30% off.

Anyways, I hope this helps, and feel free to ask any questions!

u/HORSEtheGAME · 14 pointsr/cars

How about a diagnostic reader? Something like this. Basically if your car has the engine (or another) light on you can plug that in and your phone will tell you what the problem is. You'll need an app like Torque for it to work.

A dashcam is another gift that is something anyone could benefit from, but not everyone would necessarily think to buy for themselves. Over on /r/dashcam they have some really good guides on what to get. Expect to spend about $100, though. It seems like this one is the best bang for your buck according to their guide.

u/travelinman88 · 2 pointsr/e46

That sounds exactly like what is/has happened to mine. I just changed the VCG and spark plugs. It seems to help after a few hundred miles of test driving it, no more codes...well now the only code I have is camshaft timing sensor I need to replace. For codes too...do yourself a favor spend $20 on this OBD II Reader. There is a free app and you don't have to go down to borrow an OBD II from the auto parts store, it's super slick, tells you fuel trims, throttle position, a bunch of other things in real time, and allows you to clear fault codes. It's not my daily driver...just sits in the third stall of my garage and I whisper sweet things to it, hoping the rust around the wheel well will disappear one day...thanks Minnesnowta.

u/Dorkamundo · 1 pointr/LifeProTips

Pro-tip... In this day and age, you can obtain a scanner of your own for relatively cheap. It won't be as comprehensive as some of the more expensive OBD-II scanners you'll see at these places, but it will give you the codes and allow you to clear the check engine light once you fix it.

They connect to your smartphone via bluetooth(or wifi if you have an Iphone and certain models).

like this:


You have to get an associated app on your phone to connect to the scanner, but there are a lot of free ones out there that work. Otherwise, they are $5-10 and even allow you to do real-time monitoring of data such as RPM's, various pressures, boost level if you have a turbo... etc.

u/amonsterinside · 2 pointsr/AutoDIY


I bought one of these for an ABS code, was a great investment. Cheaper than a diagnostic and turns out the fix on my 08' charger was just tightening a bolt for the steering angle sensor.

It's $100.00, but well supported, still updated, and the support that you call is a real person every time (sorry I sound like a shill, but I had to call them because my sensor froze, turns out it wasn't plugged in all the way).

Requires a mobile phone, but can definitely give freeze frame / live o2 sensor data.

u/Snapchat_trap · 1 pointr/starterpacks

Alright I'll rephrase myself, Most modern cars should not have plastic being sucked into the engine block. That is pretty much the only way plastic is going to get onto that sensor that was installed correctly since it's placed right at the exit of the header, or in the header if the engineers felt the need to use more than one upstream sensor (depends on engine). If that is the case than there most definitely is either a hole in the tubing after the filter (What I said previously), there's a hole in your exhaust (But since exhaust has positive pressure I find it unlikely that plastic would get into any holes) Or your intake filter is installed incorrectly/not installed.

Since you know a lot about cars I'll assume you have an obd2 sensor, but if not you can pick one up on amazon for around 10-20$


An OBD2 will be able to tell you if your mass airflow sensor is malfunctioning because it will be getting readings from that sensor, You should definitely check that before replacing the ECU.

Also on most Duramax engine (I only have experience with the Focus and the Fiesta ST but this is true with most vehicles) the upstream O2 sensor is both easy to get to and easy to test, you won't need to jack up your car, just pop the hood.

u/vinnyvecchio · 3 pointsr/cars

That's what I assumed unfortunately.

I got a $20 scanner on Amazon, and it can check inspection monitors. It's a simple tool, but it will go through the list of monitors (evap, cat, etc.) and tell me if it is ready or not.

I guess I will just have to hope for the best if I don't see any CELs. Thanks for the answer!

u/DrRocuronium · 1 pointr/FordDiesels

Get an OASIS report (w/ VIN) from the local Ford dealer to let you know what she has been through (at least while under warranty)

\> there was an exhaust smell when stopped at lights

I have no exhaust or muffler on my 6.0 and don't smell any exhaust when stopped, so that is curious.

I would recommend buying an OBDII scanner from Amazon ($20) if you don't have one (regardless if you follow through with this truck or not it is great to have for all of your other vehicles). They make them with Bluetooth so you can download an app (Torque Pro) for your phone and check/clear codes as well as live data monitoring. It's what a lot of us Ford guys do until we get a tuner that monitors data.

Here is a video that shows what I'm talking about.

That way you can go on another test drive while monitoring the PIDs. Let the truck warm up (180+ F for both oil and coolant) and then hop on the freeway and set the cruise control at 55 mph. Keep it there (on flat ground) for about 15 minutes and monitor the difference between those two temperatures. If they get above 15 degrees apart the truck has a failed oil cooler.

Check the degas bottle and oil for any obvious signs of head gasket issues. Make sure the coolant in that degas bottle is clean (free from particulate) and not milky - likewise with the oil.

Injectors are the other finicky devil with these trucks. When you click the truck onto the on position, keep the door open and listen to the injectors clatter as the spool valves open and close. This is most telling on a bone-cold engine that hasn't been started that day. Those things should clatter fast and evenly. If they start slowly clattering and ramp up their speed as they clatter that could indicate sludge/stiction gauming up the spool valves which leads to contribution issues. Another app called Car Gauge Pro allows you to do a "buzz test" to check for bad injectors by individually buzzing each injector to let you listen. Here is an awesome video that shows how to do that.

I wish I would have known those tips before I bought my baby. Good on you for being far less impulsive than me. With 20 minutes of SUPER easy tests, you can give yourself a really good idea of what kind of shape the truck is in.

Head gasket, oil cooler, and injectors are the big three to keep on your radar with 6.0s. If those are all working properly and the 282k miles doesn't scare you I'd go for it - that's just my 2 cents though.

You better post a picture of that baby if you end up pulling the trigger.

u/mike413 · 2 pointsr/leaf

leaf spy recommended one specific scanner, the LELink bluetooth model.

I would go with that specific model.

it is awesome!


I've owned two wifi models, a chinese one and a good plx devices kiwi and the first was maddening and rarely worked correctly, and the second sometimes required extra resetting.

now that ios supports bluetooth, its all easy peasy.

You need an iphone that supports bluetooth 4.0.

anyway, leaf spy connects perfectly and without intervention or configuration in a second or two and its a whole different (good) experience.

u/4mstephen · 2 pointsr/Honda

From Imgur -

Haters gonna hate.
Seriously this translates to any low-end model car. See what you can do. Just put your mind to it.
Wiring harness disaster.
This was the initial wiring harness done by mysterious previous owner. Electrical tape and twisting is effective, however, very sloppy.
Wiring harness - fixed.
Solder and heatshrink wires into a nice in-line harness. Used conduit and electrical tape to secure the lines into an OEM-like headunit harness.
If it sits, it fits.
Checking whilst removed that the new mount for my headunit is working properly.
Cupholder add-on.
Stock DX doesn't come with a retractable cupholder. I picked up one of these universal dual cup holders at Advance Auto Parts. It's designed to wedge between a seat and a center console. I used a hack saw to trim it down, then used Plumers Goop to fasten it to the trim piece used for the cupholder add-on.
Sitting nice.
It looks like it all came together ok, not - it's time to check and see how it's working.
Sits fine, have to get a USB bluetooth adapter for audio, however it functions just fine like so.
Torque for Android.
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.prowl.torque is the software. http://www.amazon.com/Newest-Bluetooth-Diagnostic-Scanner-Adapter/dp/B009F4JHHO/ref=sr_1_2?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1395625503&sr=1-2&keywords=Bluetooth+ODBII For the hardware.

Hope you enjoyed this! I did this today since I was a bit bored and wanted the car to function with my phone better. Happy modding!

u/TomTheGeek · 1 pointr/scion

Impedance should be 4ohms for all auto speakers, not counting subs. RMS isn't really going to matter either, the Pioneer stereo only puts out 16W per channel and most speakers will handle that easily with the right EQ settings.

Honestly though, I would look for something different. The speakers that it comes with are fine and you'd have to spend quite a lot for a small improvement. If he doesn't have a sub Bazooka makes subs that aren't to expensive and would at least be noticeable.

If he doesn't have one of these I highly recommend one. Paired with the Torque app they are awesome.

u/Dilemona · 1 pointr/fordfusion

Forscan is a software you install on a laptop/phone, and use an OBD adapter to change settings within the Ford software.

It sounds crazy, but it’s insane how easy it is. You can change literally any setting on the car, as well as add features. I added the digital speedometer, and tire pressure monitor to screen in the middle of the gauges.

Let me know if you need help with it. Forscan is free, and OBD adapters are like $20-30 on Amazon. I would recommend the OHP ELM27 adapter.


u/sparkie172 · 2 pointsr/subaru

You can go to autozone or wherever they check for you then look up online as code is generic. Each brand has their own specific meaning for the code. Before my cobb I used a Bluetooth obd2 reader 20$ online then used torque app from Android store free version to check and clear codes. It also does some pretty cool stuff for the paid version. The obd2 reader is small which I liked. I had 1 like this. https://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-34t5-Bluetooth-Android/dp/B005NLQAHS

u/Flipper303 · 3 pointsr/BmwTech

I'm going to be straight with you. Save 50-100$ and buy yourself a bluetooth scanner. I bought this an installed the app Torque Lite (free) it has saved me so much cash it's not funny. BAFX Products - Wireless Bluetooth OBD2 Scanner https://www.amazon.com/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_XAQIDb05W5KSJ

Plug it in, itll pull the codes from your car, you can look them up on forums and boom. Diagnosis for free. I hope this helps!

I've been taken too the cleaners too many times. Those people run a business and need to make money. Some do it honestly, some dont.


u/dsmaxwell · 2 pointsr/Cartalk

Everyone should have one these days. They're super cheap. This is the first one that came up on Amazon. Seems to be reviewed well. It's bluetooth and connects to your phone. There are a number of free apps that will serve your purposes. I use OBD Car Doctor.

Good luck!

u/carter31119311 · 3 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

Panlong Bluetooth OBD2 OBDII Car Diagnostic Scanner Check Engine Light for Android - Compatible with Torque Pro https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PJPHEBO/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_CEJkDb0V2Z9T5

I just want to mention, I do strongly recommend investing in a real one if you want an odb scanner. I keep this one with me because it's small, and cheap, and like i said, it's usually right, but not always completely correct. Is it worth $10-$11 dollars? Sure! Do I ALWAYS trust it? Not always.

u/zakats · 2 pointsr/Sprint

>not sell to yourself but to sell to others

I hear ya, but I think I covered this angle in my OP.

> diagnostic reports, access to certified mechanics, and AAA assistance

I've got a lot more experience as a mechanic than as a cellular salesman, what you just said there is the sort of horseshit sales pitch that's as shallow as 'pay us extra, cuz money' that corporate is always trying to push. I don't blame you, and I feel a little bad for telling you this because disabusing you of the nonsense that they've fed you will make your job harder, but there's nearly 0 real utility to it that can't be done with the phone people are already paying for.. which is why carriers love to sell them, it's high margin value added frivolousness.

This is a better diagnostic tool than any connected hokum being sold by carriers and it's ~$10. With a free or ~$5 app, there's a lot of information and help at your fingertips that can be read or shared.

>You may not want a tablet with a data plan, but a single mom without WiFi may want to give her kids one, or a college kid who needs something to take notes or draw on the go, small time YouTuber, etc.

Like I said, I don't represent everyone, but a lot of that doesn't resemble what you find in many areas. YMMV, but it can be a tall order and I don't feel like OP is lying to us.

u/SilverHerfer · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

Speaking as a non professional, who was once in your position, I would do a couple of things:

Buy the Chilton or Haynes manual for your car. Some will buy the actual shop manual from the factory but it is more expensive.

Check to see if there is an on line owners forum for your specific make and model. I belong to at least 1 owners group for each of my cars. There is little you will face that someone there hasn't seen, fixed, and provided details with pictures. The older the car, the more likely someone has already figured it out.

This sub. You've already found it so that's a good start.

YouTube. Full of instructions and videos on how to fix and replace stuff. You'll find just about everything there. A lot of garages will put out some really professional looking video's in hopes you'll buy the parts from them. I learned how to replace the control arms, ball joints, and end links on my Ranger and Explorer, the struts on my Toyota Previa, and the motor mounts on my Focus, all through YouTube videos.

I also couldn't live without a good OBDII reader. I use the BlueDriver (but there are others like it). For every code it finds, it gives you access to a pre written report, by ASE certified mechanics, on the top reasons for and best potential fixes of, that code.

And most importantly, you need a shitty car to work on. Mine was an old Chrysler also.

u/eclectro · 5 pointsr/Showerthoughts

All scanners are not the same, some are better than others.

This is probably the best BIFL "value buy" scanner that works with all cars with obdII interface.

And the Torque app works great with it too.

u/garynuman9 · 9 pointsr/funny

Bluetooth OBDII readers are ~$10 on Amazon!

Combine one with an app like torque- lite version that reads codes and does the basics is free, pro is like $5 and has bells and whistles.

This way, as opposed to simply reading the codes, you can get real-time data directly from your car's ecu.

Shits amazing for ~$20. What you save in repairs by catching issues before they turn into expensive problems is amazing.

u/betterusername · 1 pointr/Audi

Ross tech makes a great cable with software (Windows) included, but they go from $$$ to $$$$$. You can buy a cheap OBDII bluetooth interface like this one (works pretty well) and an app like Torque pro or Carista (expensive monthly subscription required for anything beyond actually OBD2 protocol codes), but it's not as full featured as Ross Tech's.

You can also look on something like AudiZine for someone near you, or take it to any Audi specialty shop.

What are you trying to do with it?

u/Enemyboatspotted · 1 pointr/mazda

Yea, there are better options but until I get an accessport I'm using this adapter with the Torque Pro app.

Here is an example of a run at WOT I logged to make sure my hpfp was working properly for example

Good luck

u/calcium · -1 pointsr/financialindependence

Here's my suggestion if you want to pass emissions but don't want to repair your car. Go online and get yourself an ODB2 scanner for less than $20. Then when you pull up to the smog place next time, plug it in and clear all the codes on your car and then run the emissions test.

As long as the light doesn't come on during the test, you should be good to go and could pass your test. You can also go somewhere like AutoZone and have them check the code on your car for free to see what it is.

u/kylesach · 2 pointsr/GrandCherokee

There should be a stored code from the airbag light which would help with figuring out what's causing it. You won't get it with a scanner that only pulls CEL codes. A dealer could get it, or you could something like this. I have one and I was able to get ABS codes from it.

Good luck with the blend doors. I almost wish our Jeeps had the Takata airbag issue because then I'd have the dealer replace the blend doors, heater core, and a/c evap while they had the dash off to do the airbags. Just so I wouldn't have to worry about them.

u/SyntheticManMilk · 6 pointsr/IsItBullshit

I disagree. I actually am happy with the current systems in modern (minus the dash board touchscreens. Fucking hate those things, just give me knobs and buttons!). In my opinion they are easier to work on. Hear me out.

I was broke through my 20’s, so whenever I had car trouble it was either “fix it myself, or don’t have a car”. I’m not a mechanic, but I’ve learned a thing or two about car repairs. Even though I can afford it now, I still fix my own car because I’m now aware of how much mechanics gouge people.

I can’t speak for all the cars, but I just like the way components were placed in my car. I drive a current model Grand Cherokee and everything is just so clean, spacious, and well organized under the hood. The difference between my modern car compared to my older cars is kind of like this. I can access major components much easier now that it’s not a cramped mess down there anymore.

With computers running everything they possibly can though, there is a downside. The thing people like to complain about is how a computer can fail and kill the car. A dealership will try to charge you well over $1000 dollars to “fix” a computer, but you can just order a new computer online for like $200 and replace it yourself (it’s easier to replace than any mechanical component). I actually like the computer systems because they do a fantastic job of monitoring all kinds of things making preventive maintenance a breeze. Playing with this thing has been very fun. Buy one and save yourself the $100 your dealer mechanic would’ve charged you for just to tell you what’s wrong.

Also in general, today’s cars are better than ever in general. Most of them are built to last longer now. Also, the basic major components are still the same (axles, exhaust, brakes, differential, underbody stuff) and are no more or less harder to work on now than in the past.

u/diablo_man · 9 pointsr/BlackPeopleTwitter

If you got a "Check engine" light on, and you want to know what it means but dont want to drop it off at a pricey mechanic just for a diagnosis and potentially expensive repair, head over to amazon and pick up one of these blue tooth OBD2 scanners. That ones for android(I have it, works great), this one works for iphone and android.

That plus a typically free app like "Torque" let you find out the error codes your car is throwing out(and all other kind of basic diagnostic stuff), so you can google it and see if its something you need to fix right away, could easily fix yourself(with youtube), or if its just a minor problem you dont need to worry about yet.

And if you do take it to the shop, you can probably save them some time(and thus money for yourself), and being more informed, keep yourself from being taken for a ride.

If your car is 1996 or newer it should have a port for these(typically under the steering wheel above the pedals), save yourself some anxiety about that new warning light that just showed up.

u/commiecat · 2 pointsr/subaru

Here's what I have:

  • OBDII Bluetooth adapter

  • Torque Pro (Torque Lite is the free version)

  • ActiveOBD TQ plug-in (Standalone free version)

    Torque Pro is an Android app that reads the adapter. Pro version has nice features but feel free to test out the free one first.

    ActiveOBD gives some extra Subaru information. Use the standalone app first to see what it does. The plugin I bought is to view the information within Torque.
u/Alex-Gopson · 2 pointsr/Audi

If you go to Amazon and type in "OBD2 scanner" you'll get tons of different results. They have all kinds of scan tools nowadays. The more expensive ones with really advanced features can even cost thousands of dollars and look like freaking Ipads!

But a basic $15 scanner like this is still great to have. It's super simple to use. You plug it into your cars OBDII port (located in the driver's side footwell, usually somewhere near the hood release latch.) Then flip your key to the "on" position (don't turn the engine on, just turn on the ignition such that you can use the car's accessories and unlock the steering column.)

From there you can pull codes as well as erase them. The scanner will come with more detailed instructions but it's pretty self-explanatory. The thing only has 2 buttons so if you can use a computer or cell phone it shouldn't be a challenge.

u/ChasesBearW_FlySwatr · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

My bad, the BAFX is a good, simple, inexpensive OBD dongle and it looks like I spoke prematurely about it dying, lol (key on is important, Doh!)...



I'm still wondering if the increased speeds of the OBDLink MX+ may be worth it though as well as the increased data pids for my Toyota.

u/EK71 · 3 pointsr/FiestaST

Hey man, get whatever size you want. Recalibrating the speedo is super easy and takes 10 minutes.

Buy an ELM compatible dongle (this is mine) and run Forscan on your laptop. You can change your tire size to whatever you want and your speedo, odo and everything else will be 100% accurate.

I'm running OEM FiST wheels on my EcoBoost and my speedo is still perfect, even though the 17"s are about 1" bigger on the diameter.

u/omega884 · 2 pointsr/Miata

Yeah, so this sounds a lot like my 99. Never threw a code for the bad O2 sensor, but would throw the cat code. You could be getting the cat code either because your cat is actually shot (although I'm not sure if that would be the cause of the bucking when cold) or because the front (and possibly rear) O2 sensors are shot, causing the computer to think your cat is shot. If you were having misfires, it's definitely possible your front O2 sensor is dying. An OBD-II sensor will be really helpful here if you don't want to pay a mechanic to troubleshoot it. I use this one and while their app works, I prefer OBD Fusion, which also has an O2 sensors monitor that will show you the self test information from the computer for those as well.

u/brmo · 7 pointsr/Android

I am doing the same thing in my 2010 Ford Escape. I ordered a double din dash kit off amazon, made the hole a tad bit bigger and i already fiberglassed the tray that i will use to slide it in and out of.

My plan is just like yours, torque, nav, music, etc. I already have a Turtle Beach USB Audio sound card, for usb OTG, where a powered USB hub will be used for the sound card and the 64gb usb stick. (Works great btw.).

The only issue I have right now is power, while its not important, especially when using a powered USB hub, I still feel comfortable with it charging while its in my car. So the project is on standby until the pogo pinout gets figured out (should know as soon as the official dock launches), and then go from there.

So far here is my parts list:

Charger: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004I44CHQ/ref=oh_details_o02_s00_i00

USB Audio: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0036VO4X4/ref=oh_details_o03_s00_i00

Bluetooth OBD2: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLQAHS/ref=oh_details_o01_s00_i00

u/XxRoyalxTigerxX · 6 pointsr/cars

There's a smaller sized blue OBD2 plug in on Amazon it goes along the lines of "panlong" or something, it's only like $10-15, works fine in my Lexus and Mercedes, it's able to clear errors and stuff, real-time info works well. And it's really low profile unlike those other adapters so if it sticks straight into the foot well it won't bother you

Edit: it's $11

Works fantastic with torque pro

u/Sarcasticusername · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

This one is the best according to most of the car guys I watch. http://www.amazon.com/BlueDriver-Bluetooth-Professional-iPhone-Android/dp/B00652G4TS it gives you much more information than just the one code, it gives possible causes, possible solutions, fuel/air ratios, compression (if your car has sensors for it) and the ability to clear codes, as well as some other features.

Source: I watch a lot of car repair channels on YouTube, I fix my own cars, and I've owned a couple different OBD testers.

u/vhalember · 12 pointsr/cars

Oh, I completely understand passing on that car. Sounds like nothing was maintained.

Still, get one, they are very very useful, and cheap. Only $13 for an Android BT reader on Amazon - $18 if you need iOS. If you have Android, download Torque ($5 for paid version, but even free is very good.)

That under $25 set will have more features than the $200-$400+ readers still sold in autostores... and are more up to date, and can easily interface with the web for more code information.

u/Montagge · 2 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

First one I ever got was an Autel MaxiScan M300. It doesn't suggest fixes, but that's what I used google for! Worked great on ever car I used it on

edit: I still use it when all I want to do is read or clear codes and not read live data

u/mynameismurph · 1 pointr/Jeep

Good tip.

OP this is the cheap one I have:


Pair that with torque pro lite and you'll be able to get all the diagnostic data off the bus.

I recommend everyone have one on hand. My 2017 has thrown a few CELs since I bought it. Very useful tool to get started on fixes.

u/0-Give-a-fucks · 1 pointr/whatcarshouldIbuy

I bought this one because the real power is in the app, and the app is only 10 bucks. It works well. Takes a little setup but it sounds like you're up to the task. It's really simple but lots of great info about the auto you're checking! You can keep it connected while you drive and check on the performance live.

u/KinglyWeevil · 1 pointr/Showerthoughts

Pro-tip: Check engine lights are usually pretty easily repaired, but can indicate serious malfunctions inside your engine, and can cause all sorts of cascading problems down the line.

Since 1996, the OBD-II Interface has been standardized and is required in every vehicle sold in the US. So if you have a car in America, made after 1996 - you can do the following:

You can get one of these and an app on iOS/Android, and monitor all sorts of sensor information from your engine, as well as check and clear check engine light codes! It's very cool, and is something I use to monitor the health and performance of my engine on a daily basis.

The total investment is less than $20, and can grant a lot of peace-of-mind.

u/shukoroshi · 1 pointr/prius

Lucky you! Now that I've got a branch new hybrid battery, I'm on the hunt for a low mileage Gen 2 Prius. 🤣 At 185k I'm starting to run into more nagging high-mileage issues now.

If you have an Android phone, there's a great app called Dr. Prius that can help you do some diagnostics/health monitoring on the battery. It can help you determine if the battery is on the way out. All you need is a bluetooth OBD adapter and the phone. This is the model I've been using for about 6 years now - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLQAHS/

u/maalth · 1 pointr/AskTruFemcels

I was fortunate to have an opportunity to learn how to work on cars when I was younger. While I never had any desire to be a full time mechanic, I hate paying shops more. Newer cars while complex, they still can be done by the DIY mechanic. A good two way scanner will go a long ways. For $100, I recommend the blue driver as a good one way scanner. I use it with my ipad to do any kind of diagnosis on cars. I'm still shopping for a good two way scanner to do any kind of testing/diagnosis. Link: https://www.amazon.com/BlueDriver-Bluetooth-Professional-iPhone-Android/dp/B00652G4TS/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1542056166&sr=8-3&keywords=blue+driver

u/tripwire1 · 18 pointsr/malelifestyle
  • Screwdrivers

  • Needle nose pliers

  • Sockets

  • Electric Drill

  • Putty knife and spackle

  • Level

  • Hammer

  • Work gloves

  • Stud finder

  • Tape Measure

  • A good, small flashlight--keep one in the car and one in the home

  • A toolbox to store it all

    Specifically for my truck I have:

    a flexing spark plug socket like this one and spark plug pullers

    An OBD II Scanner

    Auto jack(s)

    An oil pan and an oil filter wrench or other tool that makes the filter easier to remove

    And, of course, jumper cables, a poncho or two, some spare water bottles and all that good stuff that stays in the truck too.

    Edit: Honestly, this is a great place to start--Stanley 65-Piece Homeowner's Tool Kit

u/chrisbrl88 · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

By the way, I'd suggest ordering one of these and downloading the Torque Pro app to use with it. Great addition to anyone's road kit, and it lets you access the kind of information you need to effectively diagnose car troubles. Information like fuel trims, trouble codes, O2 data, etc. are IMMENSELY helpful when people ask us for help here :-)

u/Static_Awesome · 1 pointr/Justrolledintotheshop

Yeah, I know it's a small chance. But sometimes you'll see a description of a problem and go "THAT'S EXACTLY IT!".

Oh? Well -that- I can help out with, for under $30! Setup is mainly bluetooth pairing and turning on the app, worked instantly for me. App decodes codes or looks them up for you, too!
Here's an adapter:


And here's the app to use it ($5):

Itunes (I haven't used this, but have heard the name recommended before):

Alternative iTunes(again, not an apple user, but heard good things):


u/Tokume · 1 pointr/camaro

I was borrowing the GoPro Hero3+ from my friend who rode with me. I used Torque for my first run, but didn't bother recording the stats on the others since I was just trying to have fun. I use a Bluetooth BAFX ODB II reader with my phone, and it works well.

He also mounts his phone on his windshield an app called SoloStorm to record data from ODB II and external GPS. App also acts as a dash cam which is nice considering that the GoPro was acting up and didn't auto start and record any of his runs unfortunately. In theory it was supposed to trigger the GoPro, but we were having connection issues with it that day, so we started this video manually before the lap.

I didn't edit the video itself except to trim off what wasn't part of the run. Just used iMovie since it was available.

u/SlateRaven · 72 pointsr/LifeProTips

Yes - I bought a cheap $15 bluetooth ODB2 module that links to my phone. From there, I use Torque to manage everything. Great for testing sensors, checking codes, etc... Also cool to have it in my glovebox for when my coworkers need one out of the blue - makes you look cool for half a second.

EDIT: Here is what I use for the module:

As for the app, I use Torque Pro:

u/okeyban · 1 pointr/jetta

Thanks for the responses!

Would a OBD2 reader like this work? It has good reviews and is cheap. Just want to make sure it has the ability to change those settings and not just see error codes.

Veepeak Mini WiFi OBD2 EOBD Scanner Scan Tool Adapter Check Engine Light Diagnostic Trouble Code Reader for iOS iPhone iPad and Android https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WPW6BAE/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_Zuspzb9KMHRCX

u/poke826 · 1 pointr/nissanleaf

I bought the dongle on Amazon (link). I used it with LeadSpy a few times before making my decision. The state of health when up quite a bit when the firmware was updated. I checked it a few times after that and it went up and down very slightly - not enough to matter. I did end up buying out the lease. I'm happy with the decision. I might have splurged on a Model 3 if it was $35K at the time. It would be nice to have a car I could use for road trips but the Leaf is great for commuting.

u/mynameisalso · 1 pointr/AskAMechanic

Is the check engine light on? You can go to any parts store like advance auto and they will scan for free. Write down what they tell you.

You can also buy this and use your smart phone to read codes using your smart phone. It'll also let you have a digital dashboard on your phone/tablet.

Panlong Bluetooth OBD2 OBDII Car Diagnostic Scanner Check Engine Light for Android - Compatible with Torque Pro https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PJPHEBO/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_l8bqyb6BDQ200

u/fire84 · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

This car has ~140k miles and the majority of things under the hood seem to be original. The last owner kept a pretty good record of routine maintenance. They were not the type to take the car to the dealership for repairs or maintenance, but everything that I have changed lately (plugs, wires, PCV valve, serpentine belt) were all Motorcraft, which makes me think that most of it is original.

I did order an OBDII scan tool which should be here in a couple days, so hopefully that will be of some help. Most of my previous cars were older and I didn't have any use for that sort of thing.

u/Ron-Swanson-Mustache · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

I bought this and then this app. Total was $25 for an OBD II scanner that resets some codes as well can display cool and useful realtime gauges to Android devices about all kinds of your car's performance readings.

I see there are other cheaper ones now, but I've used these 2 and know they work great together.

u/timonandpumba · 1 pointr/Frugal

This is the code reader if in the future you're interested or working on another car. The app was free and I seriously love it. Code readers that a garage use are expensive because you're paying for a powerful handheld computer, but most of us already have powerful handheld computers!

u/WombatWithFedora · 1 pointr/XTerra

I use this one I bought off Amazon:



Some of the cheaper ones are not compatible with all of the OBD2 protocols, which is probably why the one you got doesn't work with your XTerra, but this one complains to be compatible with all OBD2 vehicles 1996 and newer. I have used it with a 2000 Cavalier, 2002 Mustang, 2005 XTerra, 2007 Camry, 2012 Tacoma, and 2015 Versa successfully so that is most likely true.

u/snickerzz · 1 pointr/bloomington

If you have an android phone, these are great. They pair to your phone and give code read out and ability to reset the light if its just a glitch. You have to have an app on your phone, some are free, but one of the best is only is $5.00 (torque pro). I'm not sure about iphone stuff. (edit: its also nice to have an idea what's wrong before going to a repair person.)


u/jewski1 · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

I’m currently in a similar situation with a car worth less (and we still owe more on the loan) than what the potential repair is. By some dumb luck I had the thought to look through the paperwork from when my husband bought the car and he had freaking bought mechanical breakdown coverage!!! So I’m breathing a sigh of relief atm. But as for you, the code thrown by the car is not always indicative of what exactly is wrong. For example my car was throwing an engine code (p0172) and multiple engine cylinders misfiring, but in actuality the turbocharger had gone bad (still an expensive fix, but less than an engine repair). Trans tune and slip fluid, may help in the immediate future, but after that the problem will still persist, its a temporary solution if it even works. To clear the codes you can buy your own OBDII reader and just plug it into the car and clear the codes if you really wish. This one I know for a fact allows you to clear codes, but you might be able to shop around and find another cheaper one that will suffice. As a suggestion, some mechanics will buy cars that need work because they are able to fix them and then sell them for more money. It’s just an option and would put some money in your pocket to buy a new car if you can’t afford this repair.

Edit- wanted to add to the part about codes not being exactly what’s wrong. They still correlate to the mechanical failure. The engine code of p0172 is that the system is too rich in bank 1. This means not enough air and too much fuel is flowing into the combustion chambers. So it makes sense that since the turbo is not functioning, enough air would not be getting mixed in with the fuel.

Edit 2- hastily wrote my first edit and apparently irked some people off :) fixed my mistake.

u/martianyam · 1 pointr/vandwellers

Nothing crazy really... You would just have to maintain the vehicle on a different schedule meaning oil changes and filter changes should be done sooner than usual, keeping the vehicle at idle wears the life of the oil a bit faster... And just generally get in there and check that you are good on all gaskets, seals, belts, vacuum hoses, check ur plugs and such. Probably not a bad idea to flush ur coolant with new if it's really old.
And generaly keep an eye on oil pressure and your temp gauge so you can catch it if something is gone wrong and shut the engine off...

I used to wake up and turn my engine on for heat then go back to bed for an hour or two every morning without an issue... I used this wifi obd scanner


Paired to my phone so I could see the temps and such without leaving my bed again. Also it's nice to have so you can read and erase codes and have a better idea of what's going on with your vehicle if something is wrong... And on long drives I would use it on data logging mode to catch any issues and adjust my driving to get optimal mpgs.


If you do go this route something you could do to get the most juice out of your charging system is upgrading your big 3

Here's a video on how to do that:


And a smart battery isolator between your starting battery and your secondary is not a bad idea

u/WebMaka · 2 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

For best (read: accurate) results, make sure your dongle uses a genuine up-to-date ELM327 and not a bootleg knockoff running outdated firmware. (A Chinese company got hold of an older version that didn't have the security bits set right and did a ROM dump to get some of the firmware, which has gone into mass reproduction for the cheap ELM knockoffs. The real ELM, OTOH, has had several firmware revisions since then and isn't missing entire blocks of program code.)

This is the one I have as a spare/quick-and-dirty code checker. It works well, it's pretty accurate compared to my more expensive scanners, and it's a legit ELM327 running new firmware.


There are also new competitors to the ELM327, namely the STN1110, STN1170, STN2120, which claim to offer faster performance and a larger number of supported protocols. However, I have no experience with these as only a scant handful of dongles are using them.

u/melikeum · 1 pointr/BMW

I highly recommend grabbing a cheap OBD2 reader off amazon like this one. It can help you fix certain minor issues yourself or at least give you a heads up when you have to take it in for service.

u/alitanveer · 6 pointsr/Frugal

Don't worry bro. I got your back. I've had this for the last two years and it has saved me tons of money and trips to Autozone (mostly for family cars). Torque is also awesome and shows you all kinds of cool data.

u/NorcalHPDE · 1 pointr/cars

For iPhone:

For Android:

There are "mini" versions but I have 0 experience with those. I'm sure they work just as well. Hope this helps!

u/brock_lee · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

Get yourself a $20 OBD-II code reader which can be used to clear the codes. Maybe borrow one first at AutoZone, to clear the codes, and see how long it takes for the CEL to come back on. If it's more than a, hour or so, take your new reader when you go for the smog test, and clear the codes right before. Maybe it'll get past if the CEL stays off long enough.

I have this one, works great:


u/PotatoSaladIPA · 1 pointr/Volvo

Sorry! Coulda sworn I made a description with details. Ok here goes.

So, it's a 2006 S60 2.5T Automatic. 125k miles and it's completely stock in every regard. I run 93 octane and Castrol EDGE European Formula 0W-40 for the winter. Current temp was 24 Fahrenheit and vehicle was at operating temperature well before I did this test/pull.

I'm using the OBD Fusion app on iOS 10.2 iPhone 7. The OBD2 reader itself is called the "VeePeak OBD2 Wifi only for iOS and android" Here is a link to it in amazon where I bought it.


Shortly after this, I peaked at 15psi boost :)

u/boomjay · 1 pointr/BmwTech

I don't think you understood my question - Bank 1 and Bank 2 each have 2 sensors - B1S1 (Bank 1 Sensor 1 - Upstream), B1S2 (Downstream), B2S1 and B2S2.

You need to replace B1SX - What's the X? You should find that out, rather than replacing both (which are about $100 a piece).

If it's a code that's being thrown, you should buy a cheap OBD2 scanner and download Torque (Android) or CarDoctor (iPhone) or another OBD2 app on your phone to read the codes. If you have an iPhone, they usually only support WiFi enabled devices, while Android phones support Bluetooth. I got this (https://smile.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-Bluetooth-Diagnostic-Scanner/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1526942582&sr=8-4&keywords=ELM327) and it works great, but I have an android.

You can read out what the code is, and it will probably tell you which bank and sensor is throwing it as well (maybe not, but if he narrowed it down to that bank, its worth a shot).

u/Quintaar · 1 pointr/Not_Enough_Tech

>What carries a subscription?
The Bluetooth plug - Amazon comes with a Free and PAID plans. As I have not used one - I'm not sure what features come free. At £30+ for the dongle - it could be an expensive profile :)

u/MyD0gNeedsaJ0b · 2 pointsr/JeepRenegade


Get one of these. Download an OBD app. The apps I've used will bring up specific codes and read out faults.

I will add that this may not be rock solid advice as I've heard of some newer vehicles freaking out and requiring their software to be reinstalled. If it Renegade, I wouldn't hesitate to give it a shot in your circumstances.

You may be thinking "This isn't good advice because I want to know now" and don't want to wait for shipping. I still recommend ordering one even if you explore other avenues. I bought this exact unit and it has paid for itself multiple times just in fuel savings of driving to a AutoZone/dealership.

Wish you luck and hope the best for you and your Renegade!

u/blandreth94 · 2 pointsr/ToyotaTacoma

This method worked great for my 2015 AC. It should work on 2012ish+ tacos.

You will need a bluetooth or USB OBD adapter. You can get them fairly cheap on amazon however the standard one seems to be the BAFX tool for bluetooth. I then used a simple OBD2 Terminal app (for android, either this one or this one, can't remember I used) to send the commands.

Just be extra careful and make sure you type the commands in exactly as shown.

I am not liable for anything ever.

Edit: FYI: No matter the method, any changes of this nature are automatically reverted when the battery is disconnected.

u/Zmodem · 1 pointr/FordDiesels

100% agreed!

I bought the BAFX (Android or Windows mobile device only), Amazon link here, alongside the Torque Pro app. Can't go wrong, and gets me all that I need for diagnostic :)

Very good info, buddy!

u/stealer0517 · 1 pointr/UnethicalLifeProTips

I was talking about this

I think bluetooth adapters are a bit more than the $5 the person above said. I got mine for $20 and it works great with the high speed mode in torque. I'm sure you can find a china special for $5-10. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLQAHS/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o08_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

u/psyki · 1 pointr/BmwTech

Unlikely. The check engine light comes on for a variety of reasons but fuel economy and tire pressure is not one of them, not directly at least. What is causing the check engine light to come on may indirectly affect your fuel economy but it definitely won't come on just because the mileage has gone down or the tire pressure sensor light is on.

Get one of these ($13) and any one of the myriad programs for your phone that will read your codes. Torque is excellent if you have Android, and there is a free version.

u/yerFACE · 1 pointr/MINI

Smart move! Let us know what’s going on.

Edit: still a good idea to pick up an obd scanning tool. They are cheap and cheerful. Example: Car WIFI OBD 2 OBD2 OBDII Scan Tool Foseal Scanner Adapter Check Engine Light Diagnostic Tool for iOS & Android https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00W0SDLRY/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_7-FIzbGJC42Y7

u/code-sloth · 3 pointsr/cars

Actual link so others can see more easily: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLQAHS

Yep, that's the one I have. Works like a charm for two years now.

u/N3O9Pr · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice


Anything other than that, you mine as well save your money for a true scan tool.

Make sure it's a true BAFX product. There's tons of look-a-likes. It's not worth saving $5 bucks for it to crap out.

u/BlackholeZ32 · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

HA. I logged on this evening to find the comment where someone had suggested exactly this.
I've heard good things about the Torque app used with a bluetooth adapter. The one I was suggested was this one.

I'm curious bout the many bluetooth/wifi dongles and their abilities to work with German CAN cars, and possibly Ross-Tech software.

u/Stringtheory5 · 2 pointsr/tampa

All cars from the mid-90s and up have OBD 2. All the device does is essentially act as a translator to the car's OBD 2 and your device.


You can use either a laptop or smartphone/tablet. Don't know if that specific reader above will work, but that's the type of device.

Edit: if you do go the smartphone/tablet route it goes without saying that the included CD won't work. You need to download an OBD 2 reader app. A good one is DashCommand, and it's $10 in the App Store.

Edit 2: Here it is in action. 2 minutes, top.


Don't let the wires deter you. It looks like he has that permanently mounted and those are power and audio cables. The OBD reader is still operating wirelessly.

u/vladsinger · 1 pointr/funny

You can get a cheap bluetooth one like this and interface it with something like the Torque app on Android. It's worked pretty well with my Honda Accord so far.

u/neilthecellist · 3 pointsr/leaf

Yes, what this person is saying. Download Leaf Spy Pro (yes, it'll cost you a few bucks off Google Play, oh well), and get an OBD (I got this one - ANY Leaf you come across, plug it in, load up Leaf Spy Pro, and look at the top right number in the main screen. Here is an example -- the 50.8% at the top at 67.4% SOC (state of charge) means the car is probably around 75-77% SOH (state of health) -- you don't want to buy a used Leaf like mine with that much battery degradation unless you just won't drive long-distance (my trips to Portland from Hillsboro are very rare, only about once every two weeks, and it's only 35 miles roundtrip).

BTW for anyone wondering from my screenshot, yes, the battery does get that hot. It's 85 F outside right now outside my house, and I just came back from the grocery store. Yes, Leaf Spy Pro does indeed say my battery is at 127 F. One time I came back from Portland and my battery temped at 205 F according to Leaf Spy Pro. This is what us Leaf customers get for buying an EV with no thermal management system...

u/scullythesully · 1 pointr/prius

Third or fourth 12V battery, not the hybrid battery, right?

And I'd be looking for something like this? https://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-34t5-Bluetooth-Android/dp/B005NLQAHS I unfortunately have an old iPhone, so finding an app would be difficult for me, but finding a friend to help out wouldn't be impossible.

u/BfnC · 1 pointr/MINI

I use both Torque Pro and Carly.
Torque Pro works great for gauges and data, Carly works great for coding.
I've been using this cheap bluetooth adapter for both for 2 1/2 years:

u/poolecl · 2 pointsr/subaru

You can get a code reader that connects to your phone for about that much. I think. As long as the Justy is not too old for OBD II. https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00WPW6BAE/ref=mp_s_a_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1518391460&sr=8-4&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=wifi+obd2+scanner&dpPl=1&dpID=41RSPD0DTYL&ref=plSrch

Also, check out /r/subarujusty Its very quiet there but they may be able to help you diagnose. Or be pessimistic because there are few parts avalible for Justys. Good luck.

u/Scyer · 1 pointr/Showerthoughts


Not the exact model I had but pretty close. Though read the reviews as I did minimum researching on this particular model. Mine was only around $25. I left it plugged in all the time (Not...really recommended but it didn't kill my battery at all)

u/aMiracleAtJordanHare · 4 pointsr/CFBOffTopic

If it's an ongoing thing, you can get an OBDII-to-bluetooth dongle for about $11 and a $5 phone app called Torque, then you can read and clear codes from your android phone. Plus see live engine data, which is neat. I think iOS has wifi equivalents. For me it adds a ton of peace of mind when I can read a code as soon as it pops up.

u/iHateMyUserName2 · 2 pointsr/GolfGTI

To go with the other reply from the Ross-Tech (worker?/user?/employee?) you can use it for that but there's a delay in the reading from a half second to a full second. It's not really all that noticeable unless you're kind of looking for the delay, but I think you'd be much happier with a boost pod.

Edit: also, if you're jailbroken you can use the bluetooth version of the transmitter but if you aren't jailbroken then you have to use the wifi version. Now I've not used the wifi, so I can't speak for how it performs, but I'd imagine that it would actually be better than bluetooth because of the latency (delay) associated with bluetooth as opposed to wifi.

u/PHRiSCo · 1 pointr/Audi

I bought this;


I use it with the torque app. It's awesome! Is there something similar for iphone? If not, go get a used Android phone off a friend.

u/bmxbang7 · 2 pointsr/projectcar

They aren't cheap! I have a temporary set up Currently, I'm Running this OBD 2 reader https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLQAHS/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o09_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I have a android tablet (that my wife also got me) that I use for the gauges currently. Works fantastic and gives me everything I need so I don't have to worry about dropping 💴 on gauges until the end. I can't remember the app I have but it cost like maybe 5 bucks but was worth every penny. I can Get you the app I use if you want

u/offermychester · 4 pointsr/projectcar


Also buy the torque app. If you're curious about what you're engine is doing this is the best 30 bucks you can spend. Reads codes, clears them automatically, tells you when your engines warmed up, will display and log the output of your obd sensors.

u/mastiii · 1 pointr/yaris

I got new wheel covers like this for mine. There are a ton of options ranging from $25-45.

An OBDII scanner is kinda useful and you can use it with your phone to display info that the Yaris doesn't. Things like MPG, tachometer, etc.

I don't know if this will be useful but I'll throw it out there: wifi hotspot for your car for $20/month. More info here.

Cleaning your car also spruces it up too. Enjoy your Yaris!

u/Asterios390528 · 2 pointsr/hondafit

I'd recommend getting an ODB such as (https://www.amazon.ca/Veepeak-Bluetooth-Diagnostic-Scanner-Android/dp/B011NSX27A/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1539359592&sr=8-3&keywords=odb). Only $20, plug it in, pair with your phone, and get all kinda of diagnostic info.

Part of what they are charing you for is exactly this service. They have a fancier one that can get more info, but if you get your numbers and post them on something like r/caradvice you might be able to get a good answer.

u/brjacobso · 3 pointsr/prius

I got this one... Carista OBD2 Bluetooth Adapter, Scanner and App for iOS and Android: Diagnose, Customize and Service your Audi, VW, Toyota, Lexus, BMW, Mini or Scion https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YVHGTBM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apip_zV6N96vYfBCFq

It is more expensive than some but comes with a free trial of their pro features in the app that connects via Wi-Fi. The trial is needed to do the functions you want. Just cancel the trial before they charge you the pro fee for the year.

I had previously ordered a cheaper one and tried to use random free apps, and I never got it to work.

u/stiv2k · -2 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

Make sure you get a genuine adapter. I have one from a company called BAFX products. The first one I ordered from newegg turned out to be a counterfeit and it would not work. It didn't mess up my car or anything, it just didn't work. I had to buy another one from Amazon which was a genuine product and it works flawlessly.

EDIT: ok who's the wise guy downvoting me?

u/jrbless · 1 pointr/tasker

A simpler option is to tie things to a bluetooth device that is always in the car, and is only turned on when the car is turned on. There are bluetooth car kits available. Another option (if you don't want a car kit) is to get a bluetooth ELM327 adapter like this http://www.amazon.com/Bluetooth-Diagnostic-Scanner-Engine-Reader/dp/B0051CAE1C. It plugs into the ODBII port on the car. If you install an app like Torque you can read the information from your car computer as well - helpful if the "check engine" light comes on.

u/nostinkinbadges · 1 pointr/autorepair

This is what I use because it was recommended on e46fanatics forum, which is a mecca for e46 series BMW owners. The Veepeak is a cheap OBDII adapter, and OBDFusion is a program you will not regret buying. OBDFusion will read CEL codes, but it also has logging functionality to help analyze driveabilty problems.

I am strongly against standalone OBDII readers because of their high cost and crappy interface. I bought one at HarborFreight, which was handy for reading CEL codes, and thought it was the shiznit, until I tried the BT reader with Android phone. It is so much more convenient to use the smart phone that's already in your pocket. I haven't touched the standalone unit since I bought OBDFusion with BT adaptor. If you have an iPhone, you will need the WiFi adapter, not bluetooth.

I paid for this program twice, one time on Android, and then again for iOS version when I changed phones. It is still the best bang for your buck, even when paying for both versions.



u/alientity · 1 pointr/cars

Right, I'm saying that I can do all of this already with the cheap hardware on the market (example).

You do get what you pay for, but it does work. The Android app Torque is what made these interfaces even more popular.

There are better interfaces on the market, which can be used with devices such as the Arduino (example)

u/goRockets · 1 pointr/mazda3

You can get the code readout for free from any auto parts shop like autozone, advance auto parts etc. If you have a smartphone, it's a good idea to invest in a cheap obd2 reader yourself. You can get one for $13

u/C-creepy-o · 4 pointsr/Cartalk


This is what I use. I would stay away from the mini blue ones. I hear they have more issues not working on cars. The one above worked on a 99 chevy c1500, a 99 toyota camry, a 2002 protégé 5, a 2012 mazda speed 3, and a 2002 toyota tacoma.

I use torque pro as my app. It reads code plus a whole lot more. There is a version to check out for free as well, however it costs 5 dollars. Torque lite is the name of the free program.

u/CCLoveMe · 1 pointr/cars

You have to buy the wifi version of obd2 scanner if you want to use it with iphone, but in most cases, you want to connect obd2 scanner with pc and check the engine data on pc, you do not need to buy wifi obd. For example, this one , only cost $9.99, much cheaper than wifi obd,but works great.

u/g2g079 · 3 pointsr/LifeProTips

I bought this one about 5 years ago. Still working well. You also need an app. I personally bought Torque Pro for $5, but they have a free version as well.

u/TheWorld_IsFlat · 1 pointr/subaru

I just bought this one for my 2000 Impreza: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005NLQAHS/ref=oh_details_o03_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

It works great and it's pretty cheap!

u/GotMyOrangeCrush · 2 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

Any auto parts store will scan your stored DTCs for free. Step #1 is to determine what DTCs are stored.

If your CEL (check engine light) has been on, then there are DTCs stored. If your CEL was flashing, that means the engine was misfiring, big time. If your CEL is flashing there's a risk of doing engine and/or cat damage ($$$).

If you are determined to troubleshoot and fix it yourself, then a scan tool that does live data will show you what's wrong.

In general, a scan tool will tell you about all your sensors, or TPS (throttle position sensor) O2 sensor, ECT (engine coolant temp), MAP (manifold absolute pressure), etc. And 'live data' means you can see what they are doing when the engine is misfiring.

There are two ways to get a scanner, either a dedicated scanner or with a smarphone app.

  1. Dedicated scanner: Innova makes some easy to use scan tools, about $120 for a Innova 3040e.

  2. Scanner APP: Most scanner 'apps' are $5 and a bluetooth OBDII gizmo is about $20.



    OBD Auto Doctor

    Blue Tooth gizmo:
u/shark_and_kaya · 2 pointsr/mazda3

I have this it's reliable, cheap, and it works good. It's bit bulky so if you have the correct transmission, you might hit your foot while shifting.

However torque pro app still have log issues and UI is absolute garbage.I wish someone would come up with a better app.

u/the4thmatrix · 2 pointsr/FocusST

To add to what others have said, yes it's absolutely possible. If you want plug-and-play functionality without error codes you'll need to reprogram the BCM to accept the HIDs. This is easily done with a OBD-II reader tool (like this one) and the Focccus app.

u/BICEP2 · 14 pointsr/motorcycles

On a related note, for anyone looking to do this with a car you can buy cheap bluetooth OBD2 modules on Amazon for about $25.

On Android most people use the app Torque.

I use the $5 paid version of torque, I don't remember what the limitations are for the free version of it but it's money well spent because you can view a lot of diag data, check engine codes etc.

There are a couple times where I connected it to peoples cars, texted them the CEL codes, and cleared the light for them when its something simple. It was money well spent.

u/Chalmun · 2 pointsr/Cartalk

Definitely. I have this one with Torque and it works great. There are different ones and prices (I got this one for ~$14) The scanners you have just give you an error code, these give you so much more information. Plus the live data readouts with the engine running are just fun to watch.

u/xixel · 1 pointr/barrie

Yup, even less - I bought a cheap one for like $12 and it ended up working ok-ish with basic phone app, but was detected as a "Cheap clone" on PC based laptop software.

This one however, I think I paid $18 for at the time has worked great on all platforms and software:


u/bryanjk · 1 pointr/The_Donald

I purchased this one as it's the most popular one on amazon.

Works well, I recommend an app named "Torque"


u/claspinfo · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

OK, that is a good idea. Would it make sense to buy something like this: http://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-Bluetooth-diagnostics-Android/dp/B005NLQAHS

u/rfleason · 2 pointsr/Jeep

keep an eye out, when you reset the ECU, it cleared the codes, sometimes they come back after driving some amount of miles. I doubt if this one will though.

I strongly suggest getting a bluetooth ODBII reader and the torque app for your phone, the reader and the app are cheap, you can read codes, clear codes and read pretty much every sensor on your jeep.

I have this scanner and it works like a charm

u/PM_ME_CAT_FACTS · 12 pointsr/Android

Pioneer Bluetooth media receiver Play music, make hands free calls, Pandora

Bluetooth OBD clear codes, vehicle diagnostics, avg speed, fuel economy

u/lunaticfringe80 · 1 pointr/auto

I purchased this one which is pretty much the same thing and it works great with the torque app and my 07 Focus.

u/Workasaurus · 1 pointr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

OBD II Diagnostic Scanner

This is an error code scanner for automobiles made within the last 15 years or so. When plugged in to a vehicle, it'll read error/check-engine codes and even tell you what problem/definition that code corresponds with.

It's a tool that my SO and I need every so often, and I'm sure our friends do as well. I'd like to save everyone the time of taking their cars to shops just to check engine codes. Some shops charge for this service, even though the code might report something as simple as a loose gas cap.

u/Alpha_Canadian · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

So lucky! If your check engine light does come on you should get one of these! http://www.amazon.com/ELM327-Bluetooth-CAN-BUS-Diagnostic-Scanner/dp/B0090ZJPMK
So handy and can save you tons of money!

u/LemonyFreshizzle · 1 pointr/cars

No problem, if you are quite worried I recommend that you purchase a Bluetooth OBDII scanner. They pair directly to Android phones and show you exactly what your engine is doing at all times through apps like Torque. They are cheap too, around $20. Your call though as I am 99.9% certain the variation is 100% normal. I spoke to a mechanic at work about the vibration and he says that he has a fairly simple test. If the car vibrates while in park or in gear at a red light, it may be the fault of the transmission mounts. If it stops or gets less noticeable when put in neutral, it may be the engine mounts. There are many other possibilities like timing chains being off but as I said before, hard to tell without physically seeing the vehicle. Here's a link to the OBDII tool if interested. Hope you get everything sorted out!


After rewatching the video, meltedsurfwax may be on to something. Sounds almost like loose trim. Didn't see videos before due to being on mobile.

u/-StopRefresh- · 1 pointr/fordranger

Have you tried a wired usb adapter? I couldn't get bluetooth or wifi ones to work but a wired one works great.

This is the one that worked for me


u/MHerboth · 1 pointr/MINI

Either an OBD reader this or in the US certain stores can read codes for free like autozone, don't know about the UK though.

They make bluetooth readers too if you have a smartphone and or want to leave it plugged in.

u/zx2gamer · 4 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

Don't get something old from the 80's or 70's. it'll just make getting parts harder.

If you want a reliable beater that will be easy to repair get a 90's Honda. They are simple to work on, parts are plentiful, and as a daily driver they get amazing mileage. If you yet an obd2 model (96 and newer) get one of these so you can scan the codes.

u/johnnewburg · 1 pointr/mitsubishi

Hmmm...any ODB2 reader should connect to the ecu and read the code.

I bought this one in Amazon, but you need an Android. Works great and I can get live data in my 2011 Lancer ES


u/redbootz · 1 pointr/BMW


This is the one I have. It's prime-able, there are also ones not. There are a bunch of other ones too. But I have been happy with this one. The app I use is called Torque, there is a free version and a paid version.

u/TheGuy968 · 1 pointr/cars

In order for this to work would I need to get something like this? http://www.amazon.com/ELM327-Bluetooth-Diagnostic-Scanner-Scantool/dp/B0051CAE1C

If so, what's the best scanner for the money

u/LJ-Rubicon · 3 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

Yea, that's 2nd grader level science experiment style, if I'm being honest. There's so many variables and loss of solid testing in the way you did it, that it really shows nothing.

You need to get this (or one like it)

BAFX Products - Wireless Bluetooth OBD2 / OBDII Diagnostic Car Scanner & Reader Tool for Android Devices - Read / Clear Your Check Engine Light & So Much More! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_4sIHDbPWB5R0W

Then get the Torque app

You'll then be able to read actual, real time fuel consumption

Spoiler, everything is normal

u/Barril · 10 pointsr/gadgets

If your car is 1996 or later, you should have an ODB2 port (with some exceptions, google your specific car). The port is usually somewhere under the the dash on the driver side, but a quick google search will tell your where yours is for your car. It looks something like this.

I have used this bluetooth version to hook up to my car, and paired it with my android phone. Take a look at the responses to this comment for the various apps that know how to use the data. I liked Torque, personally.

u/thaifighter · 2 pointsr/MINI

I was wondering the answer to this as well. I just bought this one http://amzn.com/B00WPW6BAE I won't get it until next week but I will let you know how it is. It seems like a lot of people liked this model.

u/JeffersonianSwag · 9 pointsr/personalfinance

It looks like you can also buy them at Walmart but if you have an iPhone, it looks like they’re slightly more expensive, but worth it the cool thing about these is that you can also monitor RPMS and engine heat and, if you get a check engine light, it’ll give you a “code” and you can just google it and it’ll tell you what exactly is causing your car to throw a check engine light

u/hallstevenson · 2 pointsr/fordfusion

This is the one I bought, is recommended by a modding guru at a Fusion forum (2GFusions), and works great: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B01F0GVBWY/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Don't know if you can get it from Amazon Germany though. I thought the vendor, OHP, was based in England but not 100% sure.... Looks like they're from Estonia after all.

u/imnotminkus · 1 pointr/Frugal

The one I have looks like this and this. If you plan on leaving it plugged in, I'd recommend a smaller one as long as it has good reviews, depending on where your car's port is located. The one I got sticks out about 3 inches so my knee or foot hits it when it's plugged in.

u/ghatid · 3 pointsr/Cartalk

If you have a smart phone, you can get one of these:


You can use a free app called "Torque" which gets you a lot of good information. There are other cheaper obd2 bluetooth readers, but they have fewer reviews. (I'm sure they're fine). You get more information than a basic cheapo obd2 reader at the same cost.

u/_augustus_ · 3 pointsr/MechanicAdvice

I had an old Saturn once with similar symptoms and it turned out to be the EGR valve - I removed it and cleaned it with carb cleaner and a toothbrush. In my case I was able to diagnose as I had an OBDII scanner and the Torque app for my phone:


Good luck!

u/OwgleBerry · 2 pointsr/Miata

Why not buy a scangauge so you can pull and clear codes yourself?

Wifi. Plugs into your obd2 port. Accessed through the Dash Command phone app. Works perfectly and it's $20:

Car WIFI OBD 2 OBD2 OBDII Scan Tool Foseal™ Scanner Adapter Check Engine Light Diagnostic Tool for iOS & Android https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00W0SDLRY/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_DxJ-ybFKH7EPA

u/Jeanmarchp · 1 pointr/Lexus

BAFX Products Bluetooth Diagnostic OBDII Reader/Scanner for Android Devices https://www.amazon.com/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_B-Z2BbV6XJF6X

Plug it in and download the app and boom it gives you the codes. Super useful.

u/mafco · 1 pointr/volt

This scanner works great and only $10.99. The MyGreenVolt app gives lots of interesting stats.

u/Okey_Cokey · 2 pointsr/FordFocus

You can search this site, or LKQ's online website to find a Sync 3 Screen and APIM. Junkyards sell them as separate units and for a lot more, so I recommend LKQ's site first; they usually sell them together for one low price. Make sure it is Sync 3 (2016+ Focus) and not Sync 2.


Next, you'll need a new media hub (Part # HU5Z-19A387-A) for Android Auto and Apply CarPlay to work, as well as an adapter plate and wiring harness from 4Dtech. When you have all of these, you can plug the Sync 3 system in and it will work on its own.


You can choose to leave it as such and deal with some of the small bugs it may have, or you can reprogram it to work with your vehicle options. 2012 is the only year where you need to program the APIM for it to recognize the steering wheel controls. To program, you will need this OBDII reader and the FORscan program with a free extended license. With FORscan, you can flash the APIM to enable or disable settings such as the back-up camera--if you do not have one, climate control repeater (where the temperature displays on the sceen), colors and themes, steering wheel controls, etc. Do NOT play around with the hex codes too much or you may brick your APIM. I have a hex code master list I can forward to you via email if you decide to undergo the project. It sounds harder than it actually is. I was able to have it installed and programmed in about an hour.

u/adamhaeder · 114 pointsr/gadgets

I thought this would qualify, but I misremembered the price, it's $23.99, but it's the best I could do

BAFX Products (TM) - PIC18F2480 Bluetooth OBD2 scan tool - For check engine light and other diagnostics - Android compatible

u/Bjord · 0 pointsr/Hamilton

You could pop one of these guys in your car and see if it spits out any codes that you can lookup yourself


but it's not a full proper diagnostic like a professional would provide, of course. Nifty tool for $20 still.

u/LookAtTheName · 1 pointr/fordfusion

I bought this reader in 2013. It lists "Canada - All Vehicles 1998 & Newer" as compatible. It also says "For Android & Windows ONLY!"

On my phone I use the paid version of the Torque app. Try the linked (free) version first.

Works great for my 2010 Fusion here in the US.

Edit: Looks like they have an iOS reader now as well. No idea what app to use though.

BAFX's Country Compliance List

u/kobazik · 1 pointr/Audi

Don't want to spend too much but will this one be any good? Carista OBD2 Bluetooth Adapter, Scanner and App with Dealer Level Technology https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00YVHGTBM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_iABNDbYM2D9NB according to their website my A3 8V 2017+ face-lift is supported. ODB Eleven Standard is 3x more expensive

u/DaveCootchie · 1 pointr/MechanicAdvice

this one has live data from the car, $33

This one only reads codes but gives you the definition $18

This just reads codes, nothing else. $15

If they quoted you $3200 its probably a professional scan tool, those can read anything going on in the cars computers and even take control of stuff too. If you just want to see what's causing the check engine light and of the above 3 would work.

this last one is more expensive, but it can read obd2, abs, and air bag codes. Pretty much everything the big $3k unit does.

u/Daddy007FTW · 15 pointsr/LifeProTips

Screw that Groupon one. Here's one from Amazon that is the same price all the time and is better. I ordered one and can't be more pleased. Read the reviews and answered questions on Amazon for some great tips, including how to reset the check engine light.

u/wrayworks · 1 pointr/Android

I'm using this one from Amazon with nice results. I only have the free "Torque Lite" but I am very impressed with it.

Links for the lazy:

Torque Lite - Free

Torque Pro - Paid

u/Trek7553 · 2 pointsr/androidapps

I use this one. It sticks out a little far so I can't leave it plugged in all the time, but it works great. I use Torque Pro for the app.

u/neoMoses · 10 pointsr/Portland

This is the one I have, a couple more bucks but works great. The app for your phone (Android for me, it's called Torque) is $5.

u/th1341 · 491 pointsr/Showerthoughts

I have 2 of them. 10 dollars each

Edit: I can't find the $10 ones I have but here is one for $20


Edit: obligatory Thank you kind stranger for giving me gold!

u/chriskmee · 2 pointsr/Showerthoughts

I bought this dongle and the Torque Pro app. You have to enable the fast data stuff somewhere in the torque pro settings, can't remember where exactly. The dongle comes with its own free app which is ok, but Torque Pro is better.

u/joggle1 · 1 pointr/IAmA

That led me to do some google searching. Looks like I could buy this $23 bluetooth adapter and keep track of a lot of information in realtime on my phone with this $5 app. Awesome.