Seven must- have car diagnostic tools

These days, cars and trucks are more complex than ever. Not only are they jam packed with all of today’s most advanced mechanical components and features, but all of these sophisticated bits of machinery are all interconnected via computerized networks of interrelated Car Diagnostic Tool. These networks can be very useful in testing and diagnosing problems with your vehicle- but only if you have the right equipment. A lot of times, all this extra sophistication can seem like a great hassle- especially if you’re accustomed to the good old days of muscle-car simplicity where you just replace the part and fire it up. Well, for better or worse, those days are gone.

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why need an obd2 scanner

The good news is there’s plenty of powerful tools available that- with a little bit of time in research- you can learn to perform complex diagnostic functions with that will give you a lot more power over the ins and outs of your car or truck than you would have had otherwise.

These tools will give you the ability to figure out what is going on with your modern computerized vehicle, so that you can get it fixed and get back on the road.

1. Obd2 Scanner

An Obd2 scanner is a diagnostic system that allows onboard computers in cars and trucks to tell you what’s wrong with the vehicle. This car diagnostic tool is used for a range of self-diagnostic and reporting purposes. Unlike the earlier, OBD-I system, the Professional Diagnostic Tool uses the same code designations, communication protocols, and connectors for cars made by all major manufacturers. The standardization has made the previous Obd1 almost completely obsolete.

2. Ignition Tester

Also known as a spark tester, this tool is absolutely indispensable for anything that relies on spark plugs- that means your car. Any time an engine won’t start, it’s possible that the reason is that there is no spark coming from the spark plug to get the engine started. An ignition tester allows you to diagnose the problem so that you don’t go all around your car solving every other problem whether you need to or not.

3. Airbag Tester

As you can imagine, it could be quite problematic to have a non-functional air bag and not know about it until the moment you need it. And naturally, testing your airbag by whacking your bumper with a rubber mallet is not ideal. Fortunately, there is a tool that can tell you whether or not all of the electronic components of your airbag system are working correctly without setting the safety device off.

4. Fuel Pressure Tester

Like a problem with your spark plug, a problem with low fuel pressure can cause your car or truck to fail to start- and if you can’t diagnose the problem directly, then you may have to work on several different things before finally finding the problem. A fuel pressure tester tells you where your vehicle’s fuel pressure is at, whether it’s too high or two low, enabling you to solve the problem straight away.

5. Timing Lights

A timing light is a special automotive stroboscope that mechanics use to set the ignition timing of internal combustion engines that are equipped with a distributor. Modern vehicle engines require timing lights to scan ignition timing accurately so that the timing can be adjusted to the optimal range for your vehicle.
6. Emission Analyzer

In most states, drivers are required to have their vehicles checked for proper exhaust emissions before the vehicle can be tagged and allowed to drive legally on public roads. Even if you are fortunate enough to live in a part of the country where vehicle emissions are not regulated, it still might be good for your conscience to have your emissions tested and adjusted accordingly. These devices are inserted into the exhaust pipe and, in addition to checking your emissions- they can also be used to diagnose a whole host of problems. It can also play an important role in certain safety checks, help with engine tuning, and certain kinds of repairs.

7. Vacuum Tester

A vacuum test is among the simplest diagnostic tools a mechanic can have. With a simple gauge, anyone can gain valuable insight into vacuum leaks, low compression, incorrect timing, and sticking valves just to name a few. You will need to know the vacuum specifications for your engine, and bear in mind that these gauges are adjusted for sea level. That means for every 1,000 feet your location is above sea level, you will need to subtract an inch of vacuum. The simplest check to perform is a running vacuum test. Simply start the engine and let it reach normal operating temperature. Find a vacuum port and connect the gauge. The Car Scanner should be on the manifold or below the carburetor. It shouldn’t be on the air cleaner, high on top of the carburetor, or on any of the emissions control components.

How to do VWAudi Component Protection with ODIS software

VAS6154 ODIS Component Protection User Manual:

What is Component Protection:

Component protection is VWAG’s (VW, Audi, Seat, Skoda, Bentley, Lamborghini) way of eliminating vehicle or component theft by keeping track of each individual component and which vehicle it’s assigned too from the assembly line.

Why do you need to do component protection:

When a component protected module is fitted to its non-original vehicle, many, if not all of its functions will be limited. This is to try and prevent the use of stolen parts in the second-hand market. If a VWAG vehicle is reported stolen, a flag will be raised with their database for the vehicle’s VIN and the internal serial number/coding of each module fitted to said vehicle, such as an Engine or transmission ECU, Infotainment/Radio unit or AC/Heater control panel) making it impossible for these parts to be used on another vehicle. This will raise an error within our diagnosis system (connected to VWAG’s servers) when trying to remove the component protection and not allow the technician to proceed, alerting VWAG to the use of stolen parts.

Component protection also applies to any brand-new parts purchased and fitted. It would need to be removed before the technician could proceed with and coding, adaptions, or basic settings or said component.

What to do for component protection?

The only way to remove component protection is to take the car to a VWAG specialist with the online diagnosis system (ODIS) or the main dealer themselves.
We have invested heavily in obtaining the credentials and correct system, to be able to provide such services so you don’t have to have the huge cost of a trip to the dealer.

How to do component protection using ODIS software:

Activating component protection of a new ACC sensor.

This is un-edited and has no “fly in descriptions”

Here you go.

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Note that Use name and passwords are unique to each and every subscriber of ODIS. This is the official version and not the cloned copy VAS 5054A or VAS 6154 or VXDIAG VCX NANO… all are confirmed to work good with ODIS to do online component protection.

Best OBD2 Scanner Reviews – The Bottom Line

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There you have it, all the information that you need to know to choose your Best obd2 scanner. We’ve gone through the things you should look for as well as what these tools can do for you.

Even if you never plan to do any repairs on your own car, you can still end up saving money by getting to know what your car’s check engine light is trying to tell you. With a little internet research, you can easily determine if this is something that truly needs to be addressed by a mechanic now or if it waits a little while.

We’ve also show you how to take your new diagnostic tool out of the box and get it hooked up and reading information from your vehicle. We’ve also answered some of the questions that come up about these most often.

If you are looking for the best Auto Scanner Tool that still comes in under $1000 take a look at the BMW ICOM A2. This is a great choice if you are starting out or want a good deal of power while saving some money.

Of course, if you would like to go with the best one that we’ve come across the clear choice is the Innova 3160e Code Reader / Scan Tool with ABS, SRS, and Live Data for OBD2 Vehicles. Either of these would make an excellent addition to your garage.

Check also other OBD II Scanners available on obd2tool

Lastly, we’d love to hear from you. Which of these choices did you go with and why? Let us know in the comment section below.

Problems with Ford Explorer Transfer Case

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The transfer case of a Ford Explorer can encounter some possible troubles. It is fortunate for a typical owner that most of these problems can be repaired by OBD II Scanner. To make a preparation can make the experience more enjoyable for all involved.

Noisy Transfer Case

Usually a noisy transfer case is the result of adding the incorrect grade of lubricant or insufficient levels of the lubricant. It should be changed and refilled with the correct grade of lubricant to the correct levels.

Jumping Out of Selection

This condition can be caused by the transfer case not being fully engaged. Also, broken, loose or defective parts can make this type of “slip” happen, such as the shift fork being cracked.

Lubricant Leaks

The Auto Scanner Tool case can be overfilled, causing a leak. There is a vent in the case that may become clogged or jammed closed. Additionally, the output shaft has a seal that can become damaged.

Difficulty Shifting

When the transfer case is difficult to shift, there are a few possible causes. Loose parts within the transfer case or within the modules that control it can cause this problem. Additionally, the lubrication in the transfer case should meet or exceed the manufacturer’s specifications and be at the correct levels.

How To Factory Reset Your VCM II when Inoperable

Here is an easy way— factory reset, for you to fix your Ford VCM II when it becomes inoperable. For example, VCM II will not boot-up properly, Ford VCM II LED’s not functioning properly, etc.
1. Shut down the IDS application if it is running.
2. Disconnect the VCM II DLC cable from the vehicle.
3. Disconnect the VCM II USB cable from the VCM II and PC.
4. Remove the rubber boot on the VCM II that is opposite the DLC connector to expose the Recovery Mode Switch.

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5. Start the IDS application.
6. Press and hold the plastic tab. Do not release the tab until Step 9.
7. Connect the VCM II to the PC using the USB cable.
8. Wait for the VCM II’s Power LED to remain on and for the unit to beep.
9. Release the plastic tab – the VCM II will be in Recovery Mode.
10. The IDS pop-up window below will appear notifying the user that a new version of VCM II software is available. Select the Tick button to update the FORD VCM software.
11. Follow the IDS on-screen instructions to complete the software installation.

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Hope it help you guy out.

Which Tool is Best for Truck Diagnostic & Programming

Have search info for a few days ago because I want to learn about how to set myself up with Truck Diagnostic Tool/programming software and the proper tools to do my own work.

Topic: Looking for a good truck performance programmer

Purpose:
I want to be able to read codes on our trucks, address check engine lights, abd lights and whatever else.

Changing parameters would also be nice to do.

Truck:

We have 5 trucks. 3 of mine all have series 60. From ddec 2 up to ddec 4. He has an isx and an Acert. Our trucks are kenworth, Peterbilt and a intl 9200. Would also like cab side on those.

Budget:

I think a $4-500 one should fit the bill.

(Am I able to find everything I need rather than paying some company $4-5k for a tough book and some programming?)

Diagnostic tools looking for trucks:

I have seen a nexiq also the new NEXIQ USB Link 2 and a drewlinq. I think they all serve the same purpose?

Recommendation for hookup: (credits to Samsquantch84)

Laptop: You can pick up a used Lenovo T410 on the web for like $200. They are durable laptops not the best battery life. but get one that has an i5 processor. They are more than fast enough. If you get a laptop that is a little under powered it makes the programs run slow which is really annoying for doing diagnostics. They are pretty rugged laptops.

Equipment: Definitely the best solution is to buy an authentic Nexiq usb link one or two. But if within your budget, a good Nexiq clone of high quality (now called VXTRUCK) should be OK. It’s $200 around. I have to tell you, you need have luck with Chine clone coz you may have nothing but issues with the clone. Go to a good man of his word to trust.

The only real difference between the old one and the new one is the two is that the usb link two supports newer vehicles like ghg17. You probably won’t need it.

Also be careful buying one online unless it is a reputable source. There are some really good looking clones available that are deceiving. obd2tool.com is a supplier of the HQ NEXIQ USB Link and has great support so that is the only source I recommend. I have used it to program a new chip. Success.

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Software: As far as software goes. Find Detroit DDDL, Cat ET 2017, Cummins insite 8.1 and you should be good to go. All are easy to get for free from forums or other place.  Also, have a try with crack versions tested by professionals. If you start getting into new Pete’s or kenworth’s like 2012’s(my date’s might be alittle off) and up paccar esa might be handy as well. It connects to the body controller side and allows you to control things like if you install led headlights in a truck that had incandescent you have to change a setting in the cecu for it to work. Also keep learning. There is so much help and information available on this forum from some of the right people. you will learn who they are. Congrats on trying to better your self. and if you have any questions just ask. International uses diamond logic build for the cab side. It’s not the most user friendly software, just like their trucks, who in their right minds uses straight thread o-ring to push to connect air fittings…errrrrr. Also you can go on

quickserve.cummins.com and register for a free limited owners plan which gives you access to parts and service manuals for up to 5 engine serial numbers for free. and dependent on your peterbilt and kenworth dealers you can register with them your vin numbers to a fleet e-cat. It gives you access to look up your vin numbers and view wiring diagrams. It can come in handy.

MOPAR MicroPod II

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Good things come in small packages, like Chrysler’s latest and greatest diagnostic interface. This dongle-style device is the same diagnostic and programming tool the dealerships are using. It offers 100 percent CAN coverage for Chrysler, Dodge,Jeep and Fiat vehicle platforms. It replaces your StarMobile, StarScan, and witech Micropod 2.

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Includes:
MicroPod II, USB MicroPod II connector
cable, wi-TECH Application Software and carrying case.

MOPAR MicroPod II Features:
* Supports all the latest technologies and vehicle platforms including the latest Chrysler/Fiat vehicles.
* Works as a direct replacement for the wiTECH VCI pod.
* No Smart cables required.
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MicroPod II + Tablet
wiTECH 2 introduces fully wireless usage of your MicroPOD II with iOS or Android tablets and phones! wiTECH 2.0 allows wireless connectivity through any device with a web browser!

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MicroPOD II Remote Trigger
The MicroPod II Trigger allows the technician to use the MicroPod’s Flight Recorder capabilities. This trigger is used to start and stop recording of a customized template which is set up using the wiTECH Diagnostic Application.

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wiTECH 2.0 diagnostic software is the state of the art diagnostic system for Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep and North American Fiat vehicles. Professional Diagnostic Tool wiTECH 2.0 allows fully wireless connectivity to perform diagnostics, reprogramming and security functions.

Any mobile device with a browser will run the software, including Android and iOS phones and tablets. A Mopar Tech Authority account is required, as well as a secured MicroPod II.

This tool is used for a variety of model years but is required for all vehicles utilizing CAN operations.

The list to the right shows some of the many functions of OBD2 Scanner wiTECH 2.0.

*Increased speed
*Enhanced wireless security
*Full wireless operation
*No cables required
*Enables mobile devices
*Rapid device recovery
*No PC required
*More reliable ECU reprogramming
*Automatic WiFi reconnection
*Automated Flash recovery

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Explain how to set up Tis2000 and Tech2

About: How to setup and install GM Tech2 software TIS2000 on a computer

A lot of info I found over at SaabCentral but it is just a giant thread to read through although a lot of the info is on the first page. And a lot doesn’t apply since it’s geared towards Saab (even the 9-7x doesn’t apply, it’s under GM).

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So you have a Tech2 scan tool but a lot of the things you would like to do is locked out because you don’t have access to the computer software to allow you to do it. Things like updating PCM’s and modules and anything security related are locked out. If you bought one of the Tech2 clones, it probably came with a CD with the Tis2000 software. If you install it and try to use it, it says that it can’t find the USB security dongle or something like that. That’s because only dealers have those or a clone of one wasn’t included.

First of all, this is old software. It was discontinued in 2008 by GM which means that it works only for vehicles up to model year 2007. It will have PCM and module updates included. For example, I was able to update all of the modules and PCM in my 2006 9-7x even though it had only been a year or two since production and issue of this software. It will also allow you to reprogram a module that you are replacing.

The Tech2 communicates with the computer using a serial port on the computer running Windows XP SP3. This can be a problem if you only have newer computers. Best and easiest scenario is to use an older laptop computer that has a serial port running windows XP. In my setup, I used an old IBM T40 laptop, which is fairly decent processor wise, installed a fresh copy of Windows XP SP3 and used a docking station with it that has a serial port. Laptops that have actual serial ports built in are probably so old that they are too slow or have age and reliability issues. Another solution would be to get a USB to serial port adapter and specify the proper COM port number during the install of Tis2000.

Another possible solution would be to use a virtual environment on a host computer. VMWare is free to use and it has been done from what I read but could be a fairly involved process because of the serial port issue, especially when using a USB to serial adapter. The challenge of communicating from the virtual environment through the real computer’s hardware ports can make it difficult but can be done. I’m not going to discuss this type of installation but the basic software installation and use will be the same. If anyone gets a virtual install working, please post it up.

In some detail, this is what I did. Keep in mind that you should have some computer knowledge and know how to install Windows.

1.Installed a fresh copy of Windows XP SP3. I didn’t bother with updating anything else as far as security updates to Windows or install a virus scan because this computer will never be connected to the Internet or used for anything else.

2.Installed ALL the required drivers until there were no more yellow check marks in Device Manager. I failed to do this at first and caused a lot of headaches later, including a BSOD during software installation.

If you’re using a USB to serial adapter, plug it in now and set it up. Go into Device Manager and make note of the COM port used by the adapter.

3.Install the Professional Diagnostic Tool Tis2000 software from the CD included with the Tech2. During the install, it will ask you to specify the COM port. If you have a serial port on the computer, it’s probably COM 1 or use the one from the USB adapter.

4.Before you can use Tis2000 with your Tech2, you have to make it “think” that there is a dongle connected that authorizes it. You can download the crack below. Follow the read me file for instructions on how to use it.

That’s it. More threads will come explaining how to do stuff with it but this will get you going.

And if you need them:TIS2000 Software & USB Key

Warning: In Tis2000, whatever you do, DO NOT USE THE “SOFTWARE DOWNLOAD” BUTTON! This will retrograde the card in your Tech2 to an old version from 2008.

Some more install info, especially for VM’s, is also available in this thread from obd2tool

Cloned Micropod 2 Review DRBIII on PT Cruiser & Dodge, wiTECH on Dodge

I’m happy to report that my clone wietch Micropod 2 off obd2tool.com does work, this unit doesn’t use a HDD, just install witech natively, it comes with witech 17.04 and drb 3 as well. This is what I have.

Look here

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It’s a small package, coming with a VCI pod, a usb cable and a CD inside software

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Pins inside the VCI pod connector are built well and I’ve never had connection issues

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Sticker lol…. put it on and it’s definitely same as the original

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And also on the CD it has Micropod 2 software version 17.04.27 – it’s the newest version tested by their professionals.and also it has the DRB stub, DRB emulator, Enhanced DRB Stub and three versions of the Enhanced emulator.And DRBIII emulator with Micropod 2 is an old topic on the web. This is the tutorial i’m using. This guy has the same Micropod as me. It did work!

So far, I have the Micropod 2 on three cars.
DRBIII emulator + 2003 PT Cruiser: works  (the main things lol)
DRBIII emulator + 2004 Dodge: works
wiTECH + 2010 Charger: works
Btw, Micropod 2 with DRBIII emulator work for old Chysler the year 1997 – 2004 (2005), And with wiTECH only works for Chrysler made after the year 2003

First, I tested on a 2003 PT Cruiser.

Basically no other modules other than the Engine, work. I cannot connect to the transmission, ABS, VTSS, SKIM, radio, cluster, etc. But everything in the engine module can be tested, actuated, etc.Luckily for me, I really only needed the DRBIII to write the Pinion factor for manual transmissions, which is conveniently in the ‘engine’ part which works.Maybe I really need to invest in an older VCI pod so that everything else works.

Then, I also tested it on a 2010 Charger under witech and works flawlessly, and got a 2004 Dodge pickup and under the emulator worked perfectly.

Edit to update:

I already called my locksmith, who drives an 04 Sprinter to try it as well.So I had a chance to test my Micropod II with not only wiTECH but also the Auto Scanner Tool DRBIII enhanced emulator. Both work good!

MB SD Connect C4 requires to update VCI

We have a customer whose MB SD Connect C4 diagnostic system runs great but suddenly require an VCI upgrade.

He rename the VCI update file, but still failed to run Star diagnostic self test (Error screenshot attached)

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Solution:

Re-install mb sd c4 battery, update MB SD C4 firmware to V2.3.2.

Some users feedback that SDConnect from OBD2TOOL with serial number 101044 will take firmware update risk. If you use our DAS software without internet connection, it will work.