When something is wrong with your car, you need to know what is causing the problem. The OBD2 system that modern cars have will be able to tell you all about this. However, you will need an OBD2 scanner to help you get the information that you need. Before you look at getting one of these scanners, you need to know more about what they are and what they do.

What Is An OBD2 Scanner?

Modern vehicles have an onboard diagnostics 2 or OBD2 system in them. This is used primarily for self-diagnosis, but the software will also regulate and monitor the primary functions in your vehicle. The system sends commands to the different systems in the car and will self-correct any anomalies that it can.

As the system works, it will gather data that you as the car owner might want to know about. This is where the OBD2 scanner will come into play. To access and read the data that the vehicle is gathering, you need to use a scanner.

The scanner is a device that can present the data stored by the vehicle system in a manner that you will understand. The data that is presented will include the air temperature, the engine RPMs, coolant information, throttle, road speed as well as camshaft and crankshaft positions.

The Types Of OBD2 Scanners

There are two types of scanners that you will be able to get. The first is the code reader which is an inexpensive scanner and is the more basic of the two. The second is a scan tool which is more expensive and has more features on offer.

As the name suggests, the code reader will read the code from the OBD2 system in your vehicle. While these devices are cheaper, they will have limitations that you need to be aware of. They will often lack information regarding manufacturer codes and you might not be able to access all of the data that you want.

The scan tools have more features which are not part of the code readers. When you have this device, you will have more extensive access to both live and recorded data. You will also be able to get manufacturer codes and advanced troubleshooting options.

How To Use An OBD2 Scanner

The steps that you need to take to use the scanner will vary depending on the type and model that you have. It is recommended that you carefully read through the instructions that come with the scanner before you use it. While there are some differences in use, there are certain steps that you will always need to take.

The first is that you have to turn your vehicle off before you start using the scanner. You will then have to plug the scanner into the data link connector. This will be located on the control panel of your car, and you might need to read your vehicle manual to determine where this panel is located. You will then have to turn your vehicle on for the scanner to start working.

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