Best OBD2 Scanners 2019 : Reviews and Buying Guide

Onboard Diagnostic 2 (OBD2) is a system, which uses your car’s or truck’s onboard computer to provide a self-diagnostic report. The scanner access data from the OBD2 system on the vehicle. Now, the OBD2 scanner is like an investment & should be planned properly before buying one. In other words, the OBD2 system collects data from sensors & computer to provide the vitals of the vehicle. Nowadays OBD systems will give you information on everything starting from details of the crankshaft to tire pressure to the ignition misfires.

Best OBD2 Scanner 2019

Following is a list of the best OBD2 scanners available in the market. There are a lot of OBD2 Scanner available in the market. we know it is one time investment, So we hand picked top 10 best OBD2 scanner and listed below.

ImageBest OBD2 ScannersProduct DimensionsWeightRating/Check Price
Innova 3100j Diagnostic Code Reader / Scan Tool with ABS and SRS10 x 8 x 1.5 inches2.5 pounds4.3 out of 5 Star

BlueDriver Bluetooth Professional OBDII Scan Tool for iPhone2.2 x 1.9 x 1 inches8 ounces4.4 out of 5 Star

FOXWELL NT630 Plus Automotive ABS Scanner OBD2 Scan Tools OBD II12.6 x 8.5 x 3 inches3.24 pounds4.0 out of 5 Star

OBD2 Scanner, TT TOPDON ABS/SRS Scanner Universal CAN9.8 x 5.4 x 3.2 inches1.5 pounds4.4 out of 5 Star

Launch X431 Creader VII+ ( CRP123) Auto Code Reader EOBD9.3 x 7.9 x 1.9 inches1.32 pounds4.1 out of 5 Star

Kiwitata OBD2 Scanner9.6 x 7.8 x 2.4 inches1.52 pounds4.2 out of 5 Star

Autel AL619 Autolink Engine,ABS,SRS Auto OBD2 Scanner70.9 x 31.5 x 102.4 inches2.05 pounds4.1 out of 5 Star

ScanTool 426101 OBDLink MX Bluetooth1.8 x 0.9 x 2 inches1.12 ounces4.1 out of 5 Star

Actron CP9680 AUTOSCANNER Plus OBD II/ABS/Airbag Scan Tool10.2 x 6.5 x 1.5 inches1.3 pounds4.1 out of 5 Star

INNOVA 3160 Diagnostic Scan Tool with ABS/SRS7 x 3 x 10 inches2 pounds4.2 out of 5 Star

Best OBD2 Scanner 2019 Reviews

1. Innova 3100J CANOBD2 Diagnostic Tool:

This is one of the best product available in the market from Innova Electronics. It comes for models from 1996 to the latest. It is equipped with the capability of keeping the account or removing the needless data from ABS & SRS codes. Innova 3100J is designed to keep track of everything starting from the battery to the charging system.

The display is decently sized, hence easy to read & provides details about a lot of things. A function called freeze frame allows you to estimate few vital details like the vehicle’s fuel trim, coolant temperature etc. Also allows the user to know the exact time when the “Engine Check” light first turned on.

One problem with this product is it doesn’t come with a manual for codes, which means you need to refer to something else to know the exact problem. The best part is it provides all the information you expect from a scanner & would be a perfect fit if you like to get your hands dirty fixing your car.

PRICE: $ 120

PROS

  • Provides detailed information about any problem
  • Easy to read with a simple interface
  • Great customer service
  • Excellent range of vehicle list.

CONS

  • No code documentation

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2. Bluedriver Bluetooth Professional: Best OBD2 Scanner Tool for iPhone

This is a unique product which comes with physical sensors & a link to download the app on your smartphone. The product is from Lemur Vehicle Monitors. The smartphone will work as the display which houses all the details from the sensors.  The app comes in both the Android as well as the iOS The sensor is connected to your app through Bluetooth.

The sensor can forward information from ABS, airbags, fuel trims etc. straight to your mobile device. The smartphone makes it possible to store & map data easily. The app provides a detailed database of the codes & even provides a troubleshoot for problems. It would be a good deal if you are looking for something for personal use as it doesn’t support many vehicles.

PROS

  • Portable
  • User-friendly
  • Data storage facility because of smartphone

CONS

  • Low vehicle metrics
  • Doesn’t support vehicles from Europe & Asia

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3. Foxwell NT630 :

This product from Foxwell is one of the most user-friendly product on the list & is one of the most reasonably priced product. Though support for different vehicles is limited.

The built quality is strong & sturdy, made up of plastic & rubber. The size of the device also makes it compact & portable. Though the size makes it easy to handle & to store but makes the display small, which results in poor visibility. Though the buttons are easy to use & understand. It provides data through sensors, relays & actuators which makes it easy to use. It allows the user to have data in both texts as well as graphical representation. Other than letting you know the reason for the check engine but also gives you information on ABS & airbags. Supports multiple languages, including English, Spanish, Russian etc.

This product will serve you well if you are looking for something for personal use & not for professional use. If you are looking for something which is user-friendly at a low price point & accommodates decent car matric, this would be a decent buy.

PROS

  • Easy Interface
  • Stores data & provides graphical analysis
  • Compact & Small

CONS

  • Not for professionals
  • Doesn’t works with all models of vehicle

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4. Topdon ABS/SRS Can OBD2

This is an excellent versatile scanner from Topdon. Just like our previous product on our list, this is small & portable. Also has the multi-language support of English, Spanish & French. The screen is small & buttons are sometimes not very user-friendly.

The best part of this product is the sheer number of vehicle metrics. Supports vehicles from 2006 to the current & covers makes all around the globe. It can collect data & provide troubleshooting various problems including OBD2, ABS, SRS, CAN & EOBD. It can store data & provide a graphical representation.

It is or can be used by professionals as it can detect problems from different systems. Though it is not very user-friendly but does its job overall.

PROS

  • Supports different makes & models
  • Portable & small
  • Can be used for professional use
  • Cheap product

CONS

  • Small display
  • Not intuitive UI

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5. Launch X431 :

X431 is one of the product you should look forward to if you are into professional work. Produced by Launch this product is easy to use & looks like a gaming console. It sports a brightly lit LED screen, which is easy to work on & soothing to look into. The user interface can be updated over time with the use of Windows Operating system. With a dimension of 10.2” *2.8” *3”, it is bigger than any of our previous product.

The Launch X431 not only supports the very obvious OBD2, OBD, EOBD as standard protocol diagnosis but also has a support for professional diagnostic software which can perform comprehensive diagnosis on the main ECU modules. It checks all the boxes from Airbags, ABS, Engine, Transmission etc. Also supports real-time data tracking & also stores & collects data for future reference. Provides a graphical representation of data.

It supports almost all car models after 2006 from Asian, European & American manufacturers.  Supports multiple languages including English, Spanish, Portuguese etc.

PROS

  • Portable
  • Can be used by professionals
  • Real-time data mapping & graphical representation

CONS

  • Little on the expensive side
  • Sometimes lag

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6. Kiwitata OBD2 Scanner: Best Budget OBD2 Scanner

This is a product from KIWITATA. The display is small & creates a clutter but can collect various of data from the vehicle & also decipher OBD2 codes. A back draw of this product is it doesn’t collect ABS & Airbag codes. It provides information about the fuel system, misfire, AC system etc.

It does a great job in processing the problems & provides a graphical representation of the coded data. It can not only decipher the malfunctioning codes but also is superb in providing the exact meaning of the code. This means, every time there is the engine check light the scanner will provide the exact reason for the same.

With the support of nearly all makes & model from across the continent with & all models after 1996. Supports protocols of CAN, KWP2000, ISO9141-2, J1850 VPW & J1850 PWM. With not so good interface, it makes up for its price & reliability, best for personal use.

PROS

  • Provides graph & data storage
  • Affordable
  • Portable

CONS

  • Poor UI
  • A limited number of vehicle metrics
  • Not for professional use

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7. Autel Al619 Autolink : Best OBD2 Scanner under $100

This is another decent product on our line-up, manufactured by Autel. A moderately priced product designed for professional use but best for personal use only. The display is small but brightly lit. The UI is extremely organized & easy to use & understand. It is easy to note the specific problem & a press of a button would help you to understand the exact problem. It comes with a carrying case making it easier carry & store. Built with strong rubber & sturdy plastic this product can stand a lot of wear & tear.

It provides both generic & manufacturer specific codes. It also has a database with all the detailed meaning of the codes.  It can diagnose problems related to ABS & SRS system codes. Supports a decent list of metrics for cars after 1996.

It comes with the support of graphical representation & ability to store necessary data for future references. The device also comes with the ability to be updated over the Internet. The company releases updates to keep it up to date & to make it functional over a long period of time.

PROS

  • Works well for American & European models
  • Good UI
  • Provides graphical representation
  • Decently priced

CONS

  • Limited vehicle metrics
  • Not for professional usage

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8. Scantool 426101

This a product from Scantool which is much like the product from Bluedriver Bluetooth scanner which gets connected to your mobile device. Though there is a catch with this product, which doesn’t support iOS devices. It is built for Android & Windows devices. It supports all kind of devices from phones to tablets to PC, the scanner gets connected to the device you are using through Bluetooth.

It won’t drain your battery if you leave it connected to your vehicle. In case you are trying to connect to a PC or Notebook you should be on Windows XP or later. The application is free on both the marketplaces.

Supports all OBD2 protocols, plus SW-CAN for GM cars & MS-CAN for Ford cars. As the feature says it works best with American makes & models on or after 1996. The best part is it not only provides a face to the problem but also allows the user to get a detailed potential fix. Much like other products it provides a graphical representation of the real-time data & stores it on your phone.

The product is very reasonably priced & though it can be used by the professionals but is best for personal use.

PROS

  • Portable & easy to use
  • Graphical representation
  • Easy to work with

CONS

  • Sometimes the Bluetooth connection can be a little jittery
  • A limited number of metrics

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9. ACTRON CP9680:

Measuring at a size of 10.9” *7.7” *2”, this product from Actron is one of the good product you can spend your money on if you are looking for a scanner to sort your personal problems with your vehicle. The LCD of the product is bright & easy to read through it is small in size. The product is portable & is easy to use.

Talking about the compatibility factors, it works perfectly with OBD2 & CAN vehicles on or after 1996 to present.

CP9680 is a product which not only provides details about the problem but also provides a detailed structure on how to fix the problem. It solves problems related to ABS & Airbags, with the normal engine check light.

Allows you to record, store & graphical representation of data. It is intuitive & easy to work with.  This OBD2 scanner is ideal for both personal as well as professional use. One great feature of this product is it allows printing of data through a PC.

It covers a wide range of vehicle metrics covering manufacturers from across the world. All vehicles from 1996 to the latest would support the system.

PROS

  • Easy to use
  • Can help professionals
  • Covers many vehicle metrics
  • Portable

CONS

  • Not sturdy
  • There are cars which may not support the scanner

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10. Innova 3160 Diagnostic Scan Tool

This is another product from Innova which is worth a mention on the list. Works with a long range of vehicles starting from 1996 to the latest & the best part is it supports even hybrids & electric vehicle. It is equipped to warn for ABS, Airbags as well as the obvious engine check light.

The system is equipped with a hydraulic system that helps in speeding up the problems with ABS. Also gives a heads-up with problems related to oil & battery.

The device is small & portable but has the capability to solve professional level problems. It comes with a live data relay which provides detailed live time information on both the tool LCD or a PC. The LCD is crisp & clean, with Innova’s patented all in one display of 25 vital information.

Supports a variety of vehicle metrics after 1996 & supports all English, French & Spanish. Last but not the least there is a backup system which helps in scanning when the engine is faulty.

Pros

  • Supports professional use
  • Works with both OBD1 & OBD2 protocols
  • Efficient

Cons

  • Pricey product
  • Small in dimension can be a problem with some

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Best OBD2 Scanner 2019 Buying Guide

Thing to Consider Before Buying A OBD2 Scanner

It is important to understand your exact need for one of such system. Following is a list which can give you a clear vision on the features that an OBD2 scanner comes with.

  • Acquiring Vehicle Details: This is one factor which you should not mislay when making a purchase decision. It is important to choose that OBD2 system which can provide the maximum details from the vehicle. If you are looking to use the scanner frequently for one particular automobile, observing & playing back automobile data is also a critical feature which should be taken into account for.
  • Ability to Print: Printing is another useful feature you should have on board your OBD2 scanner. Though it is important to store all your vitals in the system, having a hard copy would always be beneficial. It helps you to focus on various vitals of your vehicle.
  • Graphical Representation of Different Vitals: A perfect OBD2 scanner would be one which provides a graphical representation of the different vitals from the engine of your vehicle. A graph would make life easier for you to fix any problem.
  • Safeguard CAN Protocol: When you are investing in an OBD2 scanner it is important that you make sure the model you are about to pay for, works in all cars or trucks. CAN or Controller Area Network protocol has become a compulsory since 2008, in any new vehicle.
  • Size of Display: This can be very handy if you are stuck with OBD2 scanners for a long Having a big display can be easier on your eyes, preventing strains.

Types of OBD2 Scanners

There are broadly two types of scanner.

  • Code Reader: These are devices that can read & clear fault codes from the vehicle in which they are equipped to. These are basic devices which are low-priced, but they do have a cramp in them the lack of any information on manufacturer specific codes or any other information.
  • Scan Tools: These are the once with a variety of features in its pocket. Details about manufacturer specific codes, access to record data & offer troubleshooting

Understanding the Code

Finding one good OBD2 scanner doesn’t end the work you have to do to get a good OBD2 scanner. You have to understand the coding from the scanners to fix the problem. There are mainly two types of code which is generated.

  • Active Code: It basically alerts you to any malfunction which keeps the engine light illuminated.
  • Pending Code: This code is generated when there is a failure of the OBD2 scanner, which has a failed emission control system.

Troubled codes are represented by either of these four letters.

“P” refers to powertrain codes, also includes problems from the emission system, transmission, engine, fuel system & ignition system.

“B” would indicate problems with the body, also covers power seating, seat belt, airbags & few more.

“C” provides an indication of the problems related to chassis, axles, breaks suspensions etc.

“U” refers to any kind of problem-related to network & communication.

The codes which represent any problem related to any part of the vehicle is represented by a string of letters. The first letter varied between “P”,” B”,”C” & “U” depending on the problem & the second digit is a standardized Generic code. It basically distinguishes between the manufacturer specific problem & a generic problem with “0” & “1”. The remaining digits will give you an exact idea of what the problem is with your vehicle. There are thousands of fault codes & it is difficult to memorize all of them, it is always better to consult the list for OBD2 codes, to understand the exact problem.

Final Words : 

Any car or vehicle can make your life miserable if it breaks down, it is also a problem to sort out the problem & fix it. On the other hand, if certain problems are not picked up early you can run into trouble like engine malfunction. This is where an OBD2 scanner can do wonders. The best part is you may not need an expert to fix it. The good OBD2 scanner can guide you through the problem-solving. This would not only save you time but also money. On the flipside, if you are a professional, you might already have one but in case you are new or want an upgrade one of the above product, which supports professional use can be a good deal.

Also to make your life a lot easier OBD2 scanners come with a list of codes which refers to the problem. Note it is important to have a clear idea of the codes before working on any problem.  Now that you know an OBD2 can save you in many aspects, it is important to go through the above articles or any article which can give you a detailed idea on what to take in consideration before making a purchase decision. There are multiple products available in the market according to us above mentioned are few of the bests. Comment down below with your expertise & share your views with us.

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