ODB scanner is an abbreviation for On Board Diagnostics Scanner. An OBD2 Scanner can read trouble codes that trigger the check engine light. OBD2 scanner tools are the latest industry standard and is incredibly more versatile than its predecessor. In 1988 the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) set a universal connector plug and a universal set of test signals / trouble codes. Unlike a basic scanner, the OBD2 scanner has a greater ability to define trouble codes and provide more accurate diagnosis, along with being able to tune or tweak performance. In 1996 the OBD2 scanner was implemented and became the industry standard.
An ODB2 Scanner can detect many things that are going on with your vehicle. It read trouble codes produced by your vehicles onboard computer system. The on board computer system monitors your cars emissions, performance, and numerous other functions. Those codes with trigger and illuminate the check engine light; letting the owner know something is wrong and needs to checked out. The codes produced are 5 characters long. Below is the break down of what each character or digit represents.
First character represents the system related to the problem.
The second digit lets you know whether the code is generic or enhanced
The third digit identifies the sub system that the code pertains to.
The forth and fifth digits are variable and related to precise problems.
We will use the code P0171 as an example. This code in particular means “System Too Lean” (Bank 1). Possible explanations for this code vary and could mean one or more of the following.
As you can see just having the code won’t do a whole lot if you aren’t familiar with auto repair. OBD2 Scanners are very helping with diagnosing a variety of problems. It can also allow you to perform performance tuning. It is a great multi use tool that is imperative to any good auto repair shop. If you have any questions feel free to comment.