When it comes to seeing how well your vehicle operates, the best way to do this is through on-board diagnostics apps, which will show if your car has any issues.
And if you don’t listen to your car, there’s a good chance it’ll cost you at your next MOT. So, downloading an OBD2 application is a great way to get accurate and reliable data on your car.
Though, many companies are developing mobile apps to display car diagnostics, and it can be tough to know which is best for your specific purpose – here’s some of the best OBD2 apps you can use.
DashCommand is an excellent OBD2 app for mobile devices that can be downloaded to Android or iOS. It allows you to essentially turn your phone into a custom gauge of your vehicle.
The app has a lot of customizable options, which is useful if you’re a novice or you’re looking for more advanced car performance monitoring.
It offers a variety of useful functions and a nice display, as it’ll allow you to monitor your vehicle performance as well as looking at things like your fuel economy too.
You can simply use the connect button to connect a scanner to your Android or iOS device, and you can even use WiFi scanning instead of Bluetooth.
It is definitely a more advanced vehicle diagnostic app, and those with experience will probably get the most use out of it – car professionals and car enthusiasts will be able to work with the vehicle data and potentially save thousands in mechanic bills.
However, even the novice can make use of the user friendly interface and error codes the app gives, and if you combine it with Google you should be able to get to grips with the DashCommand app.
Engine link (iOS users)
A solid alternative to DashCommand is Engine Link, and the app allow users to easily check and monitor the engine lights of their vehicles and to check other data.
The device is priced relatively cheaply, and it should be compatible with a Bluetooth adapter or a wireless adapter.
The app offers a wide range of useful features, which includes running emission tests, reading error codes, displaying sensors data supported by your vehicle and much more.
EngineLink makes for a perfect solution for those looking to find diagnostic trouble codes, and it’s an easy to use app that can provides valuable engine data.
The biggest downside of the app is that it’s still only available on iPhone, which means Android devices aren’t compatible with the app.
However, if you’re an iOS user then this may be the best OBD2 app you can download onto your device. There’s no free version, though the paid version is well priced and worth testing.
OBDeleven (iOS and Android)
OBDeleven is a versatile and flexible car diagnostics app that makes gathering OBD code faults easy.
You can use the app to check all fault codes on your vehicle, and you won’t need any additional software on board for diagnostic testing. So you can do pretty much everything from within the app.
It’s one of the easiest apps to use if you’re not that familiar with vehicle diagnostics – you can easily use a car scanner to get real time data from your car.
So, if you’re just trying to identify OBD code faults without feeling overwhelmed, this is a great car diagnostic app to download.
Carly OBD2 App (Android and iOS)
Carly is an OBD2 Diagnostics scanner that helps to identify what your car engine lights really mean.
You can use Carly to identify engine codes, get diagnostic insights, run emission tests and ultimately save money in the long term.
The software is from Europe, which means it’s perfect for those of us , as you’ll be able to use all the features for onboard diagnostics across different EU car models.
Carly’s biggest problem lies with its subscription service, which will undoubtedly put some users off of using the app. If you only plan to run the occasional diagnostics test, there are better options out there.
However, it’s still a solid choice for those looking for an OBD2 car scanner. Both iOS and Android users can download the app, and it’s fairly intuitive so you should be able to analyse your car’s performance even if you’re not an expert.
Common Questions about OBD2 apps
What can an OBD2 Scanner tell you?
An OBD2 scanner can tell you a lot of different information about your car or vehicle. This can range from your car speed and overall fuel consumption statistics through to the temperature of the coolant that you’re using.
What is the difference between OBD and OBD2?
There is not a massive difference between OBD and OBD2, as they are essentially just different generations of the same thing. The 2 just refers to the second generation of the original On Board Diagnostic, which is an improvement over the previous generation in terms of capabilities, as well as making one scanner standard for all vehicles.
How can I read OBD2 trouble codes?
You can choose to manually read the OBD2 codes that your scanner shows when you get the data from it – you’ll need to consider using an online guide to OBD2 codes to identify what these codes actually mean. Or, you can consider using an OBD2 app that will tell you exactly what these trouble codes mean without having to search for it.
Do I still need an OBD2 scanner to read codes?
People often get confused between an OBD2 scanner and a code reader. You’ll still need an OBD2 code reader to use with your OBD2 app – you can usually pick these up from Amazon or eBay for a very cheap price (think £10-20). Then, you can connect that to your OBD2 app to determine what the code means. This would likely cost you £30-50 at the mechanic, so it’s often worth picking up a code reader anyway.
There are a variety of popular Android OS and iOS apps that work well when reading OBD2 codes, though there’s a few that are more reliable than others.
OBD2 has become a critical tool for many people, not just mechanics. They allow you to read engine records and vehicle parameters such as torque and rotation, as well as temperature pressure and any other sensor data you have on your vehicle.
They also allow for engine light monitoring and can help you to identify clean data from stored faults – vehicle indications: speed, rotational angle, temperature and pressure.
It’s worth running a check on your vehicle before you set off on a big journey – running a diagnostics test and downloading an offline map app are essentials for any pre-road trip preparation.
Hopefully, we’ve helped you to find the best apps when it comes to reading OBD2 codes and ensuring that your vehicle diagnostics are correct.