OBD II Scanner: What Does It Do and How Does It Work?

Have you ever noticed turning on the ABS light or the “Check Engine Light” on the dashboard? The two symptoms indicate that your vehicle is problematic and you have to repair it soon. After getting the symptoms, we have to decide to fix the car’s internal problems immediately. But, before repairing, you should diagnose the problem. Can you be sure what the problem is without diagnosing the problem? The OBD II scanner is the leading equipment for identifying your vehicle’s issue by scanning the codes related to the problems. In this article, we will know the actual tasks of the OBD II scanner. We will also get the information about the adding features of the OBD II scanner.

What is OBD stands for?

The abbreviation of On-Board Diagnostics is OBD which refers to a machine related to diagnosing the problems of vehicles. The device is a system for your cars and other vehicles. It measures the activity and the performance of your car’s engine and emissions systems. It also records the data related to your vehicle and reports the problems when it can detect them.

The scanner has a fantastic working process. By the name, you can easily understand that the OBD II is the second version of the error checking function for trucks and cars. If you know its working system, you will be clear about the scanner. A computer runs the engine to detect the problem. It has a responsibility to create trouble code by diagnosing. When the system can identify any issue related to the car, it presents the OBD II code on the scanner. The computer plugged into your vehicle is closely related to instantly identifying the problems.what does obd stand for?

Identifying the trouble code through the OBD II scanner is a continuous process. The computer runs the engine to detect the problem. It has only one responsibility. The computer records a “Diagnostic Trouble Code” (DTC) when the computer identifies the issue. The code goes to the computer’s memory to save until the problem is solved. The problem can be massive or small. When the problems are significant and need to be solved quickly to avoid risk, the computer sends a signal to the check engine light. The check engine light turns on, and it is the final signal that your vehicle is problematic. Sending the sign to you is complete. Now, it is time for you to plug in an OBD II scanner. You can identify the problem through the scanner and take the initiative to solve it quickly.

What is the OBD II Scanner?

OBD is the abbreviation of “On Board Diagnostic.” The OBD II scanner is the device for use with cars and other vehicles. The scanner will present the number of issues with your vehicle instantly. The primary function of the OBD II scanner is to read the error memory and the recorder data. The computer saves the errors and gives the signal to the engine light. You have to check it with an OBD II scanner when you get the signal. After that, you will get the code on the scanner that refers to your vehicle’s problem. The OBD II scanner is so small that it can easily fit your hand. So, you can use the scanner everywhere.

obd ii scannerSuppose, when you push the brake, the brake light is not turning on. It means there is a problem that is happening with the light. The computer connected with the car signals the engine light, and the light turns on. You can easily understand there is a problem. But how can you know the problem? You bought an OBD II scanner and checked the result. The result is C0281. Do you know how you will understand the meaning of code C0281? Search on the goggle, and you will get the effect that the C0281 is what defines “Faulty Brake Light Switch.” Now you can understand that you have to repair the brake light soon.

How does OBD2 work?

The modern vehicles are excellent in structure with a “fault memory.” If any technical problem occurs, it is stored in the memory. It makes the problem-identifying process easier for vehicle users.

Therefore the OBD II scanning machine is for you to identify the error code and mark the problems. The problems are stored in the fault memory and are not instantly visible to you. The vehicle’s computer system just shows that it is problematic to turn on the engine light. But, the OBD II reader presents the error code to you to identify the vehicle’s actual issue. Therefore, you know the specific problem without any hesitation.

obd ii scannerUnfortunately, there is a misconception among the people. Most people think that all of the error codes are harmful to cars. But, it is expected that the available vehicles may have some error codes. Some error codes determine the problems which are not massive. So, it is usual to have the error codes; but you have to be careful about the significant codes with the fearful issues. Suppose the C1223, C1225, etc., define the problems related to the front wheel speed sensors. If you neglect the problems and do not be careful to repair them, they can be the reasons for your major accident. So, you have to be cautious with the significant issues of your vehicle.

What does an OBD scanner do?

Do you think the OBD II scanning process is so hard? Not at all; the OBD II scanner shows the codes directly to you. So, no need to think that the identifying process is complicated. Instead, the scanner makes the problem-identifying process more accessible to you. You can also save your valuable money by using the scanner if you can check the issues every two months. Scanning the codes and instantly repairing them will increase your vehicle’s durability and save you considerable money.

What to consider before choosing an OBD II scanner?

LIKE THE OTHER ELECTRONIC MATERIALS, the OBD II scanner should be appropriate. You can consider the essential things in choosing the scanner, including easy accessibility and connecting with the “service engine” light. Checking the OBD II code after getting the engine light on will be solved with a simple OBD II scanner. But, if you want to measure your car’s depreciation and other subtle things. 

If you want to get an appropriate OBD II scanner for your car, you have to notice some minimum offers present at the scanner.

Consistency with The Car

The OBD II scanner must be appropriate to go with your car quickly. Some scanners can not be perfect for every vehicle. So, you can judge some characteristics of the OBD II scanner before buying it. There are some determining things to measure consistency between the scanner and the vehicle, including the car’s brand, frequency of the problems that occur, car’s durability, an adjustable character of the scanner with the car, etc. The best way is to get surety from the salesman. You can ask to check if the scanner is perfect with the car or not.

Transferring Data Speed is Fast

Slow transferring is not good at all. It hampers your work by killing valuable time. You have to be sure about the fast transferring speed before buying. The well-standard OBD II scanners are helpful for fast transferring data and time-saving character.

More Data Storage

All of the OBD II scanners are not the same. There are some differences between the standards. You have to consider data storage before purchasing a scanner. The warehouse is essential for saving information on problems. The OBD scanner will mark the issues of the vehicle to repair soon. More data storage will give the scanner a space to identify more problems specifically. It helps you to determine the problems instantly and keep your vehicle well.

Reliable Brand

The scanners are essential for identifying the vehicle’s issues. A sound scanner of a reliable brand is worthy of meeting the demand. A good scanner can go for years and identify several numbers of problems. Recognizing the difficulties instantly also can decrease the amount of harm to your vehicle.

Professional OBD Car Scanners

The regular scanners are suitable for scanning vehicle issues sometimes. General car users do not need to use the scanner every day. When you feel any problem with your vehicle, you have to check the OBD II trouble code through the device. The regular scanners are perfect for your use. It may cost about $6.5 to $7.5 to purchase the traditional OBD II professional obd2 scanner

The professional OBD2 scanners are pretty different from the traditional ones. They are so powerful in identifying the issues and publishing the trouble codes. Moreover, these scanners provide more characteristics for checking the vehicle’s problems. So, they are essential for the random use of the repairing shops. Naturally, the price of these kinds of scanners is relatively higher. They cost about $11.75 for every scanner.

Final Thoughts

The OBD II scanners provide us with more using abilities than was invented to solve the limited issues. Now, it is not only a machine for presenting the trouble code but also for connecting to the smartphone. You can feel a problem carrying the scanner with you, but no trouble will happen if you connect it to your smartphone or iPhone. Finally, we can easily understand that the OBD II scanner has increased its features, including problem identification. We found the scanner as a device to show the issues only in the prior. But, now it is presenting the name of the functional problems also.


Can I Get the Mileage Details of My Vehicle Through the OBD II Scanner?

An OBD II scanner can provide you with both the vehicle’s difficulties and the accurate reading of the problems with the code numbers. But, do you know about getting the mileage reading of your car through an OBD II scanner? The OBD II scanner assists you by measuring how much is your fuel cost after every kilometer of the way. So, the scanner is not only for identifying the vehicle’s issues but also for measuring the vehicle’s mileage. It is an excellent opportunity for you to measure the amount of passing through the way using a significant amount of fuel.

How Can I Measure The Mileage Without An OBD II Scanner?

In this article, you got the solution of measuring the mileage by using the OBD II scanner. You can easily understand how vital an OBD II scanner is. Besides checking the codes, it can also provide you with the accurate mileage of your vehicle. Thus you will get the proper reading and result if the mileage runs according to your expectation. But, if you have no OBD II scanner? Can you measure the mileage in other ways? There is no need to become worried; you have many ways to identify your vehicle’s actual mileage.

  • Using Pen and Paper

The simplest way of measuring your vehicle’s mileage is by writing the data on paper. When you drive your car at random,  you can write down the measurement of the passing way (km/miles) on paper or in a notebook. Then, add the amount of used fuel in the vehicle on the paper. When you divide the amount of passing by the fuel amount, you will quickly understand how much the car goes with every liter of fuel. The process is the easiest for you.

  • Spreadsheet Database (Microsoft Excel)

If you think that writing down the paper is not easy, you can make a spreadsheet database on your computer. Here you can take a note on the database and save the information. You can divide the passing way by the fuel amount whenever you need to get the mileage. Thus you can get the result. Using a spreadsheet is a timely work but a process of avoiding the trouble of pens and papers.

  • Uploading on Google Drive

You want to check the mileage and save it for checking the result in the following months. But, you do not get the security whether you may lose the data. The best solution for you is to open a google spreadsheet and take the data in it. Thus, the data will be saved on the drive and can be opened anytime when you need it to measure.

  • Mileage Tracking App

Some apps are made to measure your vehicle’s mileage. You can download a mileage tracking app on your phone to calculate the accurate mileage of your car. The app will assist you by getting the correct amount to check how much fuel your vehicle needs after every mile.

Can I Connect The OBD II Scanner to The Android Phone?

If you want to see the error code on your android phone, you can get it quickly. But, at first, you need to have a Bluetooth wireless scanner for use with your phone. Now, take a short amount of time to complete the configuration. After a while, your OBD II scanner will automatically connect with your android phone. No app on your phone will be hampered. Moreover, the phone will directly communicate with your vehicle without carrying the OBD II scanner.

Can I Connect The OBD II Scanner to The iPhone?

A Bluetooth wireless scanner is a must for using the OBD II scanner with a phone. But, some iPhone users complain that they can not connect the scanner with their iPhone. Do not lose hope, as there is an alternative to using Bluetooth. There is a kind of scanner that uses WiFi instead of Bluetooth. You have to use these scanners and make your iPhone suitable to check the OBD II trouble code. Manually connecting the scanner to the WiFi network is a factor in working to connect your phone with the OBD II scanner. But,  at first, you have to ensure a WiFi connection inside your car.

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