More Sensors

MIL Light EOBD Code Reader

When the Engine Management light or MIL light (Malfunction Indicator Lamp) comes on it can be difficult to diagnose the problem without a scan tool. Code readers can cost from £30-£4000, it depends what you want to do as to how much you need to spend. They all use a standard socket after 2001 although some will have had the same socket fitted since 1996 see picture

EOBD (European On-Board Diagnostics) SOCKET

EOBD Socket

WHAT WILL CODE READERS DO?

They will all read

Diagnostic Trouble Codes - displays the pending and stored Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC) logged by the vehicle and the Freeze Frame. If the vehicle’s Engine Management light has or is on there will be a stored code.
Only the better ones will read ABS, Transmission codes and reset service lights.

Some might display

Live Data - displays real-time sensor measurements in a graphical and meter format. This can be useful for checking for RPM in a non-start, if it reads RPM you know the Crankshaft Position Sensor is working for example.

Some are capable of

Reprogramming- This can be useful if there is a software bug that has now been fixed.

Some are

Manufacturer Specific- These may communicate easier but if you change your car to a different make will probably not work.

There are two types of code reader

PC based usually will do more for money if you already have a Laptop.

Stand-Alone tools- these are hand held and of rugged designs, intended for use in and around cars (i.e. no lugging a laptop in and around a car).

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