Using OBD2 Tools – Frequently Asked Questions


Q: Does My Obd2 scan tool Have To Be Professionally Installed?
A: No, these devices are very much plug and play. Once you locate the port in your car all you will have to do is plug in your tool and turn the key to the on position. This gives you the ability to easily move it from one car to the other and only have it plugged in when you want to use it.

Q: Is My Vehicle Even OBD2 Compliant?
A: For the most part, if you have purchased a vehicle in the United States that is newer than the model year 1996 your car has some level of compliance. While some cars may provide more data and certain tools may be able to bring certain things up, at the very basics you should be able to pull up the generic codes with this type of scan tool. You will want to check on the compliance of your car with the tool that you select, as even if the car is compliant certain tools may not work with it.

Q:Will My Scanning Tool Drain My Car’s Battery?
OBD2 Scan Tools will pull from your car’s battery to power themselves. This draw will be about the same as if you plugged in a phone charger. If you plug the Auto code reader in to read codes and then unplug it you should not experience any problems with a properly functioning battery.

If you go with a wireless option that you leave plugged in you may need to take more precautions. Since your battery is recharged when you drive, you won’t have an issue while driving. If you leave your car turned off for long periods the device may begin to drain the battery.

Some tools can be ordered with a low voltage setting that will save battery power, otherwise, it may be best to unplug the device if you won’t be driving for more than 24 hours.

Q:Will This Fix My Check Engine Light?
If you check engine light has come on while driving you don’t need to panic. So long as you don’t see something like smoke pouring out from under your hood or if your car is driving really rough you should be alright. The check engine light comes on to let you know there is some fault that your car has noticed. It may be something minor or something that requires more attention.

These OBD2 tools with allow you to find out what the code was and what caused it. Most of them will allow you to clear off the code which should reset the check engine light. If you didn’t do any repairs though the light may come back on, though.

Q:Can These Fix Other Warning Lights On The Dashboard?
Some car diagnostic scanner will only work with the check engine light faults. There are some that we have reviewed that will also work with the SRS(Airbag) system, others will also be able to reset oil and even battery lights. You should note though that while the standard codes are more set, not all car companies use exactly the same set up as each other, so even a tool that says it can work with these other systems might not work with all vehicles.

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