Best OBD2 Scanners
As cars age they tend to break down more often than we like. Running to the mechanic every time is not only inconvenient, but can be quite costly as well. The solution to this problem is to get the best OBD2 scanner.
These devices plug into the car and can determine the issue the vehicle is having. Then a code flashes on the screen to tell the customer just just what is wrong. Anyone can use one of these units to diagnose car trouble quickly. This saves customers the time and money they shell out to mechanics every year.
As it can be hard and tiring to search though the many models trying to get the best bang for your buck, we came up with the list the best OBD2 Scanners.
|BlueDriver Bluetooth Professional OBDII||Android / iOS||4.6|
|INNOVA 3160||Windows PC||4.5|
|BAFX Products 34t5 Bluetooth||Android / PC||4.4|
|Autel MaxiScan MS300||/||4.3|
BlueDriver Bluetooth Professional OBDII – Best Overall OBD2 Scanner
Made by engineers in North America, the BlueDriver Bluetooth scanner is a versatile device. Equipped with Bluetooth technology, this unit works with tablets and smartphones so customers can use their devices to receive the trouble codes. This makes it easier to read the information. It offers all the features of similar scanners, with the added benefits that come with a smartphone.
This scanner can read both CEL and enhanced codes so that it will work with a broad range of vehicles. The Frame Freeze feature allows the customer to take a snapshot of the screen to store the code, so they don’t have to remember what it was. It also can test the system while it’s being repaired so customers can monitor the issue. And it has a database with more than four million repair reports so consumers can see how others handled the same problem
Though it comes with a hefty price tag, this unit is well worth the money. With a range of unique features and Bluetooth compatibility, it’s easy for the tech-savvy consumer to use.
BAFX Products 34t5 Bluetooth OBD II – Best OBD2 scanner for the Money
After presenting you two models that are a bit harsh on the budget, but still excellent picks, we are going to give you one with a lower price and still offers good quality.
Equipped with Bluetooth technology, this scanner will easily connect to a tablet or a smartphone. When attached to a device it’s easier for customers to read the results and research the issue. It can send the user real time results, so they know what’s going on immediately. This device can be attached to vehicles that are a model 1996 or younger, making it perfect for customers with older vehicles. It even comes with a two year warranty so the consumer is the guaranteed that it will work.
From our point of view, for this low price, the good quality is almost unbelievable. Any issues that arise are trivial, so we highly recommend this scanner!
INNOVA 3160 – Best Professional ODBII scanner
The first thing that we notices with this scanner is that it can read warning lights, on all cars from 1996 to newer. Along with that fact that it is developed by INNOVA brand, a worldwide recognized one, it makes us feel more comfortable putting this one on our list.
Along with an ability to read “check engine” warnings from two decade old models, it can diagnose both ABS and SRS codes without a problem on most car brands, like Toyota, Chrysler, or Ford. It has an option to do updates via USB flash so that you are always up to date with the version of your scanners. Again, along with an option to upgrade the version of a scanner, you can plug in USB flash in Windows PC and see all data and read codes from the scanner, which is a good thing as readability is much easier this way. Same as the previous device, it has an option to frame freeze the data, snapshotting the vehicle’s condition and providing you with live data. This can be done while the motor is running and you’re working on a repair.
Overall, this is a great scanner for the money. Innova is a brand that most people trust and the price tag is comparable to similar models. The range of features and the fact that it can connect via USB make this one a winner.
Autel MaxiScan MS300 CAN – Best Budget OBD2 scanner
We are finishing off our list off with another lower priced model and probably the best you can get if you’re on really low budget. It is an ultra-portable scanner, that is swift in downloading error codes, indicating issues that appeared in your vehicle.
This compact scanner is comfortable to hold in the hand and comes with a youthful red exterior. This device is easy to use anywhere. Once connected to the car, the LCD screen lists the error codes as it reads them. There is even a scroll function for easy readability. This device is powered by lithium ion batteries. To power the device it needs to be connected to the vehicle. For many newer cars, this means the car needs to be on to read the codes.
Readability is great on this one. Along with DTC codes, it provides a short English description and you get CD catalog of over 7000 trouble codes, making it easier to understand. It cannot connect to other devices, but you can’t have all the high tech features in a device that’s this low priced.
What else can we say about this model, for 15 dollars a piece, you are getting a device that serves its purpose well. And there isn’t anything else that you should ask for!
OBD2 Scanner Buying Guide:
It’s normal that cars, as the year’s pass, wear out and-and breakdown. Yes, a modern car has a lot of sensors to register problems, but it is often restricted from registering the bigger and more dangerous ones.
That is why, once you own an OBD II Scanner, that’s all you’ll ever need to diagnose any issue no matter how bad. All you have to do is to plug it in, and in the matter of few minutes, it will download information and you’ll be quickly informed about the problem. Car services or dealerships use this very device and then to charge up to few hundred dollars for the diagnosis.
Another advantage is that a big number of those issues can be easily fixed, without taking it to a car service. This means that with a small investment, you’ll be able to save yourself not hundreds, but thousands of dollars in the long term.
What to focus on, when buying an OBD II?
- Display – As there is a huge range of models, you might want to look for the one that gives you an actual feedback on a problem, instead of a simple code.
- Power – You will want to find one that has a battery back up for offline use for times when you cannot power it through the vehicle system.
- Diagnostics -Scanners that include an option to show real time information, while a motor is engaged and you are trying to fix it for example, are a better pick.
- Data – A scanner that can be connected to some other devices, to show data more clearly, is the one you should look for.
- Material – If you already decided to spend money on this type of product you might as well search for the one built from durable materials.