An OBDll scanner is an automotive diagnostic tool used to read codes entered in different systems when a failure is detected and your check engine lights up. The two types of OBD-ll scanners are code readers and scan tools. A code reader will only read codes while a scan tool is a full car diagnostic tool, exhibiting a wide range of features such as the ability to view and sort live data, diagnostic procedures, built-in scopes, multimeters, and more.
Are you searching for the best OBD2 scan tools that work quickly and efficiently?
Well, here are the top 3 best OBD2 scan tools:
The Launch X431 Creader VII+ DIY Scan tool is a great product that supports a wide range of vehicles. The best part is it not only comes with a test engine but also with ABS, airbag systems and can read or reset the codes, displays the data stream graphics and much more.
The multilingual menu includes most main languages (Chinese, English, French, Spanish, etc.). The software updates can be downloaded for free from the official Launch website, which is a must compared to other scanners working with software cards you need to order by mail and may sometimes be really expensive.
The pros of this scan tool are the convenient onboard diagnostics and portable design making it efficient and effective for quickly troubleshooting or monitoring cars.
The main con would be the lack of support or limited functionality with luxury and more exotic car manufacturers like Porsche and Land Rover (this is also a problem with most scanners so it’s not really a con… just be aware of it.)
This product is most suited for DIYers, amateur mechanics or mechanics looking for a good scanner on a budget.
Launch CRP129 is a pro-level product that is applicable for most of the vehicles that match the OBDII standard after 1996. It can read as well as clear DTC and supports all 10 test modes of OBDII.
The best features of this device are the oxygen sensor test, the carbon canister test and the service light reset function which works perfectly fine for multiple car models.
This device features some unique functionality as it supports engine oil light reset, brake block reset and even steering angle sensor calibrating.
This product is a godsend for both mechanics and experienced enthusiasts.
Innova 3100j is a versatile and advanced product that quickly reveals the “Check Engine” warnings on any 1996 and newer OB2 vehicles including cars, trucks, SUV, and Hybrids. It is also capable of reading and erasing the ARS and SRS codes.
Innova 3100j surveys the performance of the car’s battery and the alternator to check the charging system.
This product shows the best deal of information using a well-built and brightly-lit screen making it easy to read in any situation.
The two best features of this one are the oil reset feature which gives a step-by-step procedure for many car manufacturers and the freeze frame function that gauge the vehicle’s fuel trim, coolant temperature, etc.
All the three products mentioned above are the best in the present market and have their own advantages.
The Launch X431 is super durable, and its extensive vehicle coverage makes it the best scan tool. The powerful diagnostic utility and pragmatic DTC Diagnosis function are the added benefits. However, the slightly slower response time is the notable con in this product.
The Launch CRP129 hosts excellent features such as ARS, SRS, Transmission and CAN, good coverage of almost 40 car models, free updates and code definitions and the resetting functions which makes it a fantastic product. The con of this device is it is very expensive.
The Innova 3100j performs exactly as stated. It scans a wide range of problems and displays on the bright screen. The user-friendly interface and excellent customer support make it the best. It is an affordable and most trust-worthy product but doesn’t provide live data which is the only flaw.
Which is the best?
The best OBD scanner for you depends on a lot of factors like your budget, your level of experience as a mechanic and if you plan to use it at home or in the shop.
For most people and amateur mechanics though, we may consider the Innova 3100j as the winner.
The easy-to-use hotkeys make it simple jumping to the System menu by pressing the S button and to the Main menu by pressing the M button. The oil light reset function will also save you so much time by quickly pointing to the correct service reminder system reset procedure right away.
Finally, always remember that every mechanic has his own preferences when it comes to buying tools and finding a good and reliable OBD2 scanner to work with but buying a quality scanner with a friendly user interface can be one of the best decision of your life.
Simply get a quality one that fits your needs… you’ll thank me later!
About the author
I’m Tim Miller, an automotive mechanic, and blogger from Denver, Colorado. I’m also the founder of obdadvisor.com, an automotive blog about OBD2 scan tools.
I’ve had over 10 years of experience in car repair and using OBD scanners.
Some of my review articles about car diagnostic tools can be found on my own website obdadvisor.com.