are obd2 scanners any good? Complete Guide 2020

Did you ever notice a red malfunction light pop up on your dashboard screen that tells you to take the car to a technician? Well, that’s the OBD error scanning output of your car that comes from the onboard diagnostic tool inside the car. Onboard Diagnostics 2, also known as the OBD-II device, is a self-diagnosis tool that can automatically detect automotive error codes. 

Once the car detects a malfunction and takes it to a technician, he will hook the OBD scanner to the 16-pin connector and diagnose it. Most of the people who never used one may ask, are obd2 scanners any good? How do they work? As there are different types of OBD scanners available, they have different functionalities as well. Stick to the article to know what problems an OBD 2 scanner tool will detect and help you address the problem in your vehicle.

Are obd2 scanners any good?

The odb2 Scanner will provide the error code if some engine malfunction happens inside the car. Technicians and auto owners should own one of these devices to understand the diagnosis data the vehicle system gathers. If your vehicle has a problem in it from air temperature to the crankshaft piston, it will detect them all and help you address them. 

are obd2 scanners any good

The scan tools are more capable than the code readers that you may already have on board if it’s a model after 1995. Its advanced diagnosis capability enables you to troubleshoot properly and fix the problems quicker. While the regular OBD readers will only give you the plain diagnosis codes, the Scanner will provide you more. 

What problems can an OBD2 Scanner detect?

An OBD 2 scanner is intelligent enough to diagnose almost any fault in your vehicle system if you have the right tool. Here are the things an OBD 2 scanner can detect in your vehicle, help you resolve them, and let you know how are obd2 scanners any good:

Engine problem

The most common problem that people use the OBD 2 scanner is engine problems. YOu can easily diagnose any sort of problem with the engine once you get troubles with it. Checking the speed issues, air, water, or fuel intake and flow ratio, issues with the belt, battery problems, ignitions issues, and any other issues are easier to detect with the OBD 2 scanner.

Chassis control

You can diagnose all the chassis controlling problems in your car with the OBD 2 scanner promptly in minutes. Breaking system, steering issues, problems with the wheels, and any other chassis issues are easier to find out with OBD 2 scanners. However, the quality and the speed of detection depends on how advanced an OBD 2 scanner you’re using for the job.

AVM, BSW, and navigation

Most of the modern cars come with modern features like the AVM (Around View Monitor) and Blindspot Warning (BSW) features. It’s important to keep them in the peak condition by diagnosing them regularly, especially the high-tech features like Laser radar and sonar. An OBD 2 scanner can help you detect all the problems with them, even if it’s in a very early stage of the problem

Adaptive headlight problems

If you’re facing problems with the headlights, you can use the OBD 2 scanner to detect the problems. Especially, the adaptive headlights may get into trouble often and stop working. In that case, if you get troubleshooting indications in the dashboard monitor or not, you can detect it with your OBD 2 scanner. 

Lane camera and auto driving

Technologies like the lane camera and the latest auto-driving technologies may get into problems and stop working. You can easily detect the problems with an OBD 2 scanner and troubleshoot it effectively. However, you must get the best OBD 2 scanner with regular updating capability to get these latest features. 

Seat, seatbelt, and airbag faults

OBD 2 scanners with the latest features can detect the issues with the seat, the airbags, and even seat belts. You can regularly check the features for any sort of fault and determine if you should take any prior actions to prevent or resolve the problem. 

The HVAC and AC unit faults 

If you’re getting an issue with your HVAC system, you can use the OBD 2 scanner to get to know the problem and resolve it. You may have to spend hours and pay a lot of money for the mechanic to understand the problem. But, with an OBD 2 scanner, you can do it free of cost, within a few minutes for a precise reading. 

Faults with sensors

Modern cars come with tons of sensors to make them efficient at driving and other facilities. There could be faults in the sensors, and it can become almost impossible to tell which is faulty, especially if it’s out of your knowledge. You can use the OBD 2 scanner to detect the problems and plan a resolving plan for it. 

Benefits of owning and using an OBD2 Scanner

Using an OBD 2 scanner can be a great decision if you’re planning to diagnose the problems in your vehicle. Here are the advantages and the benefits of using an OBD 2 scanner for diagnosing your car: 

  • The OBD 2 scanner will save you a ton of time if you need a quick diagnosis of your car’s current health status. It will diagnose the whole car within minutes that would take hours for a mechanic to do. 
  • It’s fairly easy to use to diagnose the vehicle as it will come with indicating buttons or a digital interface to interact with. 
  • You can check all the early signs of serious issues in your vehicle with an OBD 2 scanner and take prior actions to resolve the issue and cut a huge cost margin.
  • OBD 2 scanners are compatible with any vehicle from light trucks, cars, or heavy trucks with the 16-pin OBD connector, which is mandatory in the US.
  • Some OBD 2 scanners are compatible with wireless connectivity via Bluetooth and compatible with digital display interfaces. 

Frequently asked questions

Here are the most frequently asked questions from the people who’re using or interested in OBD 2 scanners that you also should know about: 

Does Car Have To Be Running To Use The OBD2 Scanner?

You don’t necessarily have to keep the car running while scanning it with OBD 2 scanner. However, if you want to live data from the engine and throttle system, it’ll require the car to run. 

Is It OK To Leave Obd2 Plugged In?

Yes, it’s completely OK to leave your OBD2 Scanner plugged into the OBD port in your car. If it’s a wireless scanner, you can leave it connected and scan the vehicle often to track the faults. 

Is Obd2 Always Powered? 

The OBD port is always powered even when it is not started; you can connect the OBD 2 scanner or leave it connected and scan any time for faults and issues with your car. 

Final thought

You can get a detailed data reading from your vehicle with the OBD 2 scanner and decide your next work plan to resolve it. If you’re planning to get the scanning tool, you must have enough reason to get one, especially because you may not even need one in the first place. If you’re wondering how are obd2 scanners any good, the answer is pretty simple. 

You can quickly determine what’s the problem with your vehicle and determine what steps to take with it. However, if you’re not a person with technical sharpness about your car, you may consider getting it for your driver. That can save you a lot of cash in the long run, although the upfront cost may seem too much. 

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