Best OBD2 Scanners

Best OBD2 Scanners: Make Your Car Run Like New For A Long Time To Come!

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Any number of problems may be the reason your dashboard glows, or your car begins to have issues. An OBD2 scanner is one device that can make diagnosing your vehicle easier and cheaper. It connects to the OBD2 port in your vehicle and allows you to access the onboard computers and systems.

The scanner will read the fault codes produced by the car in order to assist you to diagnose the problem, allowing you to repair it and resume driving. Even if you have a limited budget, you can obtain a high-quality scanner that will still provide accurate results.

When choosing the best obd2 scanners, you have to consider a lot of factors. You want something that is reliable and easy to use. Making a wrong choice can cost you a lot of money and time. You can read of buyer’s guide in order to understand the criteria you need to consider in order to make an educated purchase.

We’ve done all the research for you so that picking up an obd2 scanner will be as simple as possible. In this article, we cover everything from budget-friendly options to high-end models that come with extra features like pre-programmed tests and live data streaming capabilities.

In case you don’t have the time to read, let me just get straight to my number one choice you might want to consider. I personally like the ANCEL AD310 and consider this model the best overall option as it ticks all the boxes and comes at a reasonable price for its features. If you don’t know where to start your research from, this model takes my vote, but read on to find out which are the best OBD2 scanners that made it into my top ten list.

The 10 Best OBD2 Scanners You Can Buy Today:

ImageProductOur RatingPrice

ANCEL AD310 – Best Overall

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FOXWELL NT301 – Best For Advanced DIY Mechanics

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Autel AL319

Autel AL319 – Best On a Budget

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BAFX Products Bluetooth Car Diagnostic OBDII Code Reader

BAFX Products Code Reader – Best Wireless OBD2 Scanners For Android

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BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro OBDII Scan Tool for iPhone & Android

BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro OBDII Scan Tool for iPhone & Android

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INNOVA 3100RS – Best For Professionals

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MOTOPOWER MP69033 – Best For Beginners

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AUTOPHIX OM126P – Best Value For Money

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Last update on 22nd September 2023 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Which OBD2 Scanner Should I Buy? Our Recommended OBD2 Scanners

ANCEL AD310 OBD II Scanner – Best Overall

Editor’s Choice
ANCEL AD310 OBD II Scanner
9.7/10 Our Score

Last update on 22nd September 2023 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

When it comes to basic but efficient Bluetooth OBD2 scanners, the Ancel B0310 needs to be at the top of the list. This scanner is perfect for those who need to do simple diagnostic functions on their vehicles without breaking the bank. It boasts an easy-to-use interface and an affordable price point, making it an ideal choice for beginners.

Though it is not packed with advanced features like other expensive scanners, the Ancel B0310 gets the job done. The scanner can effectively read and clear fault codes and perform basic diagnostic functions, making it an excellent tool for DIYers.

Despite the compatibility issues with certain vehicles encountered by some customers, the Ancel B0310 provides a wide range of compatibility with most vehicle manufacturers. With its pocket-sized design, the Ancel B0310 is the perfect scanner for technicians and repair shops looking for a simpler and more affordable option.

This scanner provides basic functions and advanced features at an affordable price, making it a reliable option for both home users and repair shops.

One potential con is that it may not have all the advanced features of more expensive scanners, such as transmission codes or freeze frame data. I find this is the perfect scanner for those on a budget that still want a reliable and effective diagnostic scanner for their vehicle. With its wide array of functions and affordable price point, it’s definitely a top contender in the scanner market.

FOXWELL NT301 OBD2 Scanner – Best For Advanced DIY Mechanics

FOXWELL NT301 OBD2 Scanner
9.5/10 Our Score

Last update on 22nd September 2023 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

For car enthusiasts and even seasoned mechanics scanning tools are essential. They make diagnosing problems, monitoring engine status, and identifying repair needs a breeze. They’re also much cheaper than taking your vehicle to a repair shop. The market is, however, flooded with different scanners, and choosing one can be daunting. One of the top contenders in the entry-level scanner category is the Foxwell NT201.

This simple yet effective scanner is easy to use and doesn’t require any special training. It is highly regarded by car owners due to its user-friendly interface, basic functionalities, and affordability. If you’re looking for an OBD2 scanner that gets the job done without breaking the bank, the Foxwell NT201 is one of the best options to consider. Here’s why.

As someone who enjoys DIY car maintenance and repair, I can confidently say that Foxwell NT201 is one of the best OBD2 scanners I’ve ever used. This device is user-friendly and comes with a comprehensive manual that makes it easy to understand and operate.

One of the key benefits of the NT201 is its ability to read engine codes and perform emissions tests, which is a great asset for car owners who want to diagnose issues and perform maintenance on their own. The device can quickly and accurately identify any problems that your car may be dealing with, saving you a trip to the mechanic.

Another remarkable feature of the Foxwell NT301 is its ability to scan all 10 vehicle management systems. This means that it can read codes from the engine, transmission, ABS, airbag, and other systems that may be affecting the vehicle’s performance. It also supports freeze-frame data logging, making it easier to understand the root causes of issues and providing crucial data for repair suggestions.

The interface on the NT301 is friendly, and the device caters to both beginners and professionals. Additionally, its live data logging provides real-time information, allowing users to make informed decisions about how to deal with issues. It also includes a connection cable and color screen, a notable upgrade from the previous NT201 model.

In conclusion, the Foxwell NT201 is an excellent budget scanner. It provides many of the same features as more expensive scanners, making it a perfect scanner to have in the market. Its user-friendly interface and helpful manual make it a great option for those who aren’t yet familiar with OBD2 scanning technology. All in all, this scanner is a valuable acquisition for both novice and professional users who want to keep their vehicle in top condition.

Autel AutoLink AL319 OBD2 Scanner – Best On a Budget

Value For Money
Autel AutoLink AL319 OBD2 Scanner
9.1/10 Our Score

Last update on 22nd September 2023 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Autolink AL319 is a budget-friendly obd2 scan tool for anyone looking for an affordable yet reliable code reader for obd2 equipped vehicles. It features a large and bright screen and a built-in speaker so you can have both visual and audible indications. It supports clearing engine codes and can retrieve generic and manufacturer-specific codes to help you check your vehicle. Overall the Autel scanner is a great entry-level automotive scanner, with a bright LCD, that come to help you solve problems quickly without breaking the bank, making this a great option for anyone on a limited budget.

BAFX Products Bluetooth Reader – Best Wireless OBD2 Scanners For Android

Honourable Mention
BAFX Products Bluetooth Car Diagnostic OBDII Reader
8.8/10 Our Score

Last update on 22nd September 2023 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This Bluetooth model is a great handheld scanner for anyone that prefers to work with their Android or Windows device and simply needs an obd2 s code reader for their vehicle. This obd2 scan tool will allow you to read and clear any diagnostic trouble code and get all the professional diagnostics you need in the comfort of your Bluetooth-enabled device.

Unfortunately, it’s not compatible with iOS devices, so if you need to connect your iPhone or iPad you should probably go for a different model or the WIFI-enabled model of the same company. This is the most affordable way to read and clear check engine light codes of your vehicles at the moment, so if you have a Bluetooth-enabled device this Bluetooth dongle can get you started for such a low price that definitely worth a closer look.

Update: I was looking for a new OBD2 scanner lately, preferably with a bigger screen as I felt mine is just too small. I came along with the FOXWELL NT706 but haven’t tried it yet. Looking at its specs, I must say it seems like a great deal. I’ve also spotted one with a 7″ screen. Damn… this one looks beautiful!

Has anyone tried them? Are they worthy of the price tag? If so, please feel free to send me an e-mail!

What Is An OBD2 Scanner? What Does An OBD2 Scanner Do?

An OBD2 scanner is a device you attach to your vehicle’s onboard diagnostics port (sometimes called an OBDII port) which lets you read your car’s computer information.

OBD is a standard set up by the EPA and all vehicle manufacturers are required to use this system. This system monitors and controls many things related to your vehicle’s emission control system and can tell you if there are any problems with your vehicle’s pollution control system.

It does this by sending a series of 16 digit codes to the obd2 port which tells the car’s computer what parts of the car are working properly, and what needs repair. These devices can be useful for learning when your car is having engine or transmission problems before you experience difficulty driving the car, and can help you decide when to have your car repaired.

When your vehicle is diagnosed, the data is stored in the scanner and can be downloaded onto a laptop or PC. It’s very similar to getting your car checked at a dealership, except you do it at home.

An OBD2 scanner is the most efficient way to diagnose your vehicle

Why You Need a Quality OBD2 Scanner

A quality OBD2 scanner is a powerful tool that can help you diagnose and fix issues in your car quickly and easily. Unlike warning lights or regular scanners, an OBD2 scanner can provide detailed information about your vehicle’s systems and diagnostic trouble codes (DTC), which are critical for identifying the root cause of your car’s problems.

Using a quality OBD2 scanner has several benefits, whether you’re a professional mechanic or DIY enthusiast. For professional repairs, a good scanner can help you efficiently diagnose your customers’ vehicles and provide accurate repair suggestions. It can also be a useful tool for DIY repairs, enabling you to save money on costly diagnostic services and perform basic repairs yourself.

Some of the key benefits of using a quality OBD2 scanner include its ability to read manufacturer-specific codes, facilitate emissions tests, diagnose transmission codes, and retrieve freeze frame data. Additionally, many scanners come with advanced features like wireless connectivity, larger screens, and color displays that make it easy to see and interpret the data.

Overall, a quality OBD2 scanner is an essential tool for diagnosing issues in your car quickly and efficiently. Whether you’re a seasoned mechanic or just starting out, investing in a good scanner is a wise investment that will pay dividends for years to come.

What Are The Benefits of Having an OBD2 Scanner?

  • Using an obd2 scanner is often much cheaper than taking your car to a mechanic. This is because the codes your obd2 scanner reads are simple ones, and can be read and interpreted by anyone with minimal knowledge of engines. Using an obd2 scanner can often save you hundreds of dollars when compared to taking your car to a mechanic.
  • It Is Fast. When it comes to getting an immediate answer as to whether or not your car needs repair, there is no better scan tool than an obd2 scanner.
  • It can save you a lot of time. Next time your car needs some work, you won’t have to take it to a mechanic. Instead, you can simply buy an obd2 scanner and examine your car right from the comfort of your home. 
  • It can help keep you from having to drive around with a problematic car. Because the codes your obd2 scanner reads are so simple, they are easy to understand. This means you will be able to tell if your car needs repair without having to ask a mechanic for clarification.
  • It Can Be Used For Years To Come. Once you learn how to read the codes your obd2 scanner reads, you can use them over and over again. 
  • It’s also useful if you have more than one car because you can check the condition of all of them simultaneously.  
  • And it can help you avoid being involved in an accident. By using an obd2 scanner, you will be able to see if there are any warning signs your regular mechanic may have missed. This can help you steer clear of potential trouble, and keep you safe on the road. 

All of these are huge advantages, and they are more and more important as time goes by.

Types of OBD2 Scanners

Types of OBD2 Scanners
wireless vs wired scanners
  • Bluetooth (Wireless) Scanners 

They are very small and can be easily mounted inside your car. When you use an app scanner, you simply use your car’s port and display all the data on your mobile’s LCD screen. In order to use these Bluetooth adapters, you will need a Bluetooth-enabled tablet or mobile phone, along with the App of your choice.

Most often, an app scan tool only has a few functions, such as displaying the diagnostic trouble codes and letting you clear them. However, some app scanners come with additional features, such as being able to tell you how old the codes are, how many miles you have driven since the vehicle was last inspected, and how many services visit the car has had so far.

  • Professional (Wired) scanners 

Most people don’t need a professional scan tool. However, if you are a mechanic, or someone who works on cars professionally, then you should definitely consider getting a professional scanner. Professional scanners usually cost much more than the others mentioned above, but they have several advantages.

They are the most accurate, have a large built-in memory, and are very durable. Most professional scanners have a large LCD screen, which makes reading and displaying information much easier. Some scanners even have a “history” button.

Basic Functions of an OBD2 Scanner

An OBD2 scanner is an essential tool for car owners and repair shops that allows them to diagnose and repair vehicle systems efficiently. Basic scanners have two primary functions, which are to diagnose and clear stored diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs). These codes indicate issues with various vehicle systems, including the engine, transmission, and emissions.

To use a basic scanner, you simply connect it to the car’s onboard diagnostics system through a dedicated port usually located underneath the steering column. The scanner then communicates with the vehicle’s computer, retrieves the stored codes, and displays them on a small screen. The user can then diagnose the problem and take appropriate action.

Although basic scanners are effective at diagnosing simple issues, expensive scanners contain more advanced functions. For example, they can perform emissions tests, reset oil lights, and retrieve transmission codes. Expensive scanners also include additional features like color screens, larger screens, and wireless connectivity.

Advanced Features of an OBD2 Scanner

While a basic OBD2 scanner can diagnose straightforward issues, an advanced OBD2 scanner comes equipped with a wider array of diagnostic functions that can help identify and resolve complications at a more in-depth level.

One of the significant features of an advanced OBD2 scanner is its ability to read transmission codes. These codes indicate any signs of malfunctioning in the transmission system and can help diagnose the issue before it becomes severe. Additionally, advanced OBD2 scanners can also pull up manufacturer-specific codes that basic scanners cannot detect.

Another essential feature of an advanced OBD2 scanner is its ability to provide repair suggestions. By communicating with the vehicle’s system, the scanner suggests potential solutions to the detected problem, helping the user to take immediate action.

Advanced scanners can also perform a freeze frame analysis when the code occurs, making it easier to identify the root cause of the issue. Plus, they can reset oil change reminders, providing a timely reminder to the user when it’s time for a fluid change.

Manufacturer-Specific Codes & Repair Suggestions

OBD2 scanners can provide manufacturer-specific codes and repair suggestions for vehicles. These codes are specific to certain types of vehicles and are not found in basic scanners. Advanced OBD2 scanners can detect these codes and provide more in-depth diagnostic information to the user.

To collect this data, product testing teams take detailed notes on the capabilities of the OBD2 scanner. They collect information on each scanner’s ability to communicate with different vehicle manufacturers and pull up specific codes unique to each brand.

In addition, OBD2 scanners provide repair suggestions based on the diagnostic information collected. By communicating with the vehicle’s system, the scanner can suggest potential solutions to the detected problem, helping the user take immediate action.

Overall, manufacturer-specific codes and repair suggestions are important features of an advanced OBD2 scanner, providing more in-depth diagnostic information and potential solutions for complicated issues.

Wireless vs. Handheld Scanners

OBD2 scanners come in both wireless and handheld options, each with their own unique advantages and disadvantages.

Wireless OBD2 scanners use Bluetooth or Wi-Fi technology to connect to a smartphone or tablet. This eliminates the need for wires and allows for greater mobility and flexibility when performing scans. Additionally, many wireless scanners offer a greater range of diagnostic functions and extra features compared to basic handheld options.

On the other hand, handheld OBD2 scanners use a connection cable to physically link the scanner to the vehicle’s onboard diagnostics system. This allows for more stable and reliable communication and can be useful for repairing more complex issues or resetting certain system functions like oil levels.

The pros of using a wireless OBD2 scanner include greater convenience and the ability to view and analyze data from a smartphone or tablet. The cons include a potentially weaker signal, limits in compatibility with certain software or devices, and a generally higher cost compared to wired options.

The pros of using a handheld OBD2 scanner include more reliable communication and a simpler setup process. The cons may include limited diagnostic functions and a smaller, less user-friendly display.

Scan tools that offer both wired and wireless features combine the advantages of both options, allowing for reliable communication when using wires and greater convenience and mobility when using wireless technology. They can be a good choice for those looking for flexibility and versatility in their diagnostic tool.

How We Picked Our Recommendations? Which Criteria Can Help You Choose The Best ODB2 Scanner For your Needs?

The obd2 scanners are compatible with cars made after 1996 that feature onboard diagnostic systems. They help you monitor the vehicle and diagnose various issues via scanning codes. Pick an obd2 code reader from a reputable manufacturer, like Bosch, that comes with lifetime support as such devices can be updated in order to be compatible with codes from future vehicles making them futureproof.

These scan tools will provide you with diagnostics codes so that you can decide to fix the issues or get the help of a professional. If you plan to use the device in a workshop professionally look for models that feature anti-shock and slip designs that will prevent falling damage. A large LCD is a must so is fluctuation protection.

Wired Vs. Wireless

Purchasing an obd2 scanner may not be for everyone. However, it is a great investment for people who want to save time and money on their cars, and who don’t want to have to rely on a mechanic every time they have an issue.

There are two main types of OBDII scanners available: wired models, which connect directly with your car’s OBD port, and wireless models, which communicate with your mobile device through Bluetooth. No matter which code reader you pick, OBDII scanners have a common goal: to give you accurate information about your car and help you keep it in good condition.

If you want to save your data and use advanced functions, then we recommend the OBDII wired scan tool. If you want to take care of your car simply and quickly, then Bluetooth obd2 scanners are perfect for you.

Code Lookup Functions

This is an important feature that most people overlook. There are many different codes, and it is easy to have problems with your car if you don’t know the meaning of those codes.

In order for your car code reader to be as effective as possible, it should have a built-in code lookup function. This way you won’t have to search for an online database every time you want to find out what a problem is.

There are a lot of options, so it's important to know what your needs are before making a purchase.


If you are looking for a model for personal use, It is very important that you find a device that is compatible with your car’s model, its o2 sensor and can read abs codes, ECU coding. If you are looking for a scanner for professional use, the device’s compatibility with every vehicle is essential. Since an OBDII scanner is an investment, you should look for models that allow for core updates. These software updates ensure that your diagnostic scanner is up to date with the latest vehicle models and protocols.

In order to ensure you have a device that will help you solve problems faster, we recommend looking for compatibility with iOS and Android platforms. Most scanners are compatible with both platforms, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

These scanners can provide live data to your smartphone wireless, just check that the model can provide such functionality. There are plenty of apps for Android and iPhone to choose from, some are free while others can be bought from the app store. Combine this with a rugged smartphone and you have a bulletproof system for your adventures.

Most devices have a friendly user interface that will provide plug-and-play use. Some scanners are designed to work with mobile apps for monitoring, so they are also worth some research if you need such functionality while on the road. These can be done via Bluetooth, so look for OBDII scanners that have Bluetooth connectivity.

If you need help deciphering or understanding all of your car’s codes or trouble areas, make sure that your diagnostic scanner has an automatic diagnostic feature. This way the diagnostic tool will scan itself and display any fault code on its screen without you having to manually look for the error code yourself.

Price and Warranty

The price range of obd2 scanners varies greatly, but we recommend choosing a device with as many features as possible for the price you want to pay. If you only need a basic and cheaper scanner, then there is no point in spending extra money on a more expensive one that has significantly better features.

A well-constructed obd2 car scanner, made from durable materials, is a worthy investment as will withstand the test of time. Pick one with large-sized buttons and a large screen for easier operation. An important factor to consider is the obd2 scanner cable length, as you can imagine a longer cable will give you more freedom when working at your garage.

The price of an OBD scanner varies from $20-$200, depending on the model and its functions. Newer models usually cost more than older ones, and scanners with Bluetooth and Internet connectivity will be more expensive than those without. If you want a device with as many features as possible, we suggest looking for one that costs around $60-$90.

The most important thing to consider when purchasing an obd2 scanner is the type of device that you need. If you want a scanner for personal use, then we recommend going with a Bluetooth scanner that is compatible with both iOS and Android platforms. If you would rather have a scanner to use in your business or on the job, make sure it’s compatible with every car model.

Regardless of which device you purchase, make sure to read reviews from verified buyers before you make your final purchase. If possible, try the code reader out first before making a purchase or ask for assistance from an experienced friend or family member to ensure that the device fits your needs.

The OBD scanner comes with PC integration, Bluetooth accessibility, or as a handheld device. Pick the one you plan to use most for your monitoring as it comes down to personal taste. Some scanners need to be powered via batteries in order to operate. Others rely on your vehicle’s battery to draw power from.


Is it worth buying an OBD2 scanner?

Is it worth buying an OBD2 scanner? The answer depends on your personal preferences, needs, and level of involvement with your vehicle. There are certainly benefits to owning one, but there are also potential drawbacks and costs to consider.

One of the main advantages of an OBD2 scanner is that it can help you identify and clear diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) that trigger the check engine light. This can save you time and money compared to taking your car to a repair shop that may charge for a diagnostic scan. Additionally, if you’re a DIY enthusiast, having access to your vehicle’s onboard diagnostics can help you accurately diagnose the problem and potentially fix it yourself.

However, the initial cost of an OBD2 scanner can be a deterrent, as they can range from affordable basic models to expensive advanced scanners with extra features. Additionally, some scanners may not be compatible with all types of vehicles or may not provide accurate readings for certain systems, leading to further frustration and additional costs.

Do OBD2 scanners work on all cars?

OBD2 scanners are designed to work with all cars and light trucks that were manufactured after 1996. This means that if your car falls into this category, an OBD2 scanner should be compatible with it. However, some vehicles made before 1996 may also have OBD2 systems, so it’s worth checking if this is the case for your car.

To confirm compatibility, it’s best to check with the manufacturer of both your car and the OBD2 scanner. This will give you peace of mind that the scanner will work with your car’s make and model, even if it was manufactured before 1996. When searching for OBD2 scanners, be sure to include keywords such as compatibility, pre-1996, and manufacturer confirmation in your search to ensure that you are purchasing the correct scanner for your needs.

What’s the Difference Between OBD1 vs OBD2?

OBD1 (On-Board Diagnostics) was the first generation of engine control systems launched in the 1980s. These early systems did not have a universal standard for diagnostics. Each manufacturer had its own codes and diagnostic procedures, which made it difficult to diagnose problems.

As technology advanced, OBD2 was introduced in the 1990s to improve diagnostics. It was a universal standard for engine control systems that allowed for improved diagnostic capabilities. OBD2 systems utilize diagnostic trouble codes that are standardized across all manufacturers, making it easier to read and diagnose problems.

Unlike OBD1, OBD2 has advanced diagnostic features, such as real-time monitoring of engine performance, freeze-frame data, and the ability to diagnose and monitor emissions-related issues. OBD2 also has standardized connector plugs and communication protocols, making it easier for mechanics and technicians to diagnose and repair problems.

In summary, OBD2 has become the industry’s universal standard for diagnosing faults in the engine control system. It enables technicians to diagnose issues with a wider range of features, including emissions-related issues. OBD1, on the other hand, did not have a standard diagnostic standard, making it difficult to validate and repair problems.


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