The Best OBD2 App
Car owners and enthusiasts today have it far easier than in the past. Bluetooth and WiFi technology have taken scanning and monitoring to a whole new level. You used to have to dig deep into your pockets if you wanted to purchase something that could scan the trouble codes for you, which was really only available from a dealership. Today, all you need is a smartphone or tablet.
Before, if the check engine light were to come one, you’d have a choice to make: ride it out and take the gamble or fork over your hard earned cash to get it checked. Chances are that either choose taken is going to lead to even further payments down the line as, depending on the DTC (diagnostic trouble code), parts and labor would become another costly concern.
To ensure that you know everything going on under the hood of your vehicle, an electronic scanner and diagnostic tool is a tremendous boon. Cars are continuously advancing through the marvels of technology. Nowadays, vehicles are equipped with state of the art engines and parts that can communicate directly to these tools providing you a clearer picture of how your vehicle is doing internally.
“So, how do I go about getting an OBD app?”
For starters, you’ll need yourself an OBD tool. This is the device that checks your engine and other parts for issues and then feeds it back to the app. Getting the app is a simple as going to either the iOS App Store or Google Play and downloading it.
“Which app is the best one for my device?”
Glad you asked. Providing that information just happens to be the reason for this article so keep reading.
The Best for iOS – OBD Fusion
One of the more popular OBD apps for both iOS and Google Play would have to be OBD Fusion. Though you can find it for both mobile operating systems, iOS is where OBD Fusion really shines. Hands down the most impressive vehicle diagnostic tool in the iOS App Store.
Acting as an onboard display reader for your iOS device, it’s a full-featured vehicle scan and diagnostic tool capable of monitoring engine health, fuel efficiency, and engine trouble. It requires a WiFi-capable ELM scan tool and works with OBD2 and EOBD compliant vehicles.
In order to transform your iOS device into an OBD reader, you’ll have to make sure that your vehicle meets this requirement. You’ll also need an OBD scanner tool as OBD Fusion is not a standalone app. OBD Fusion’s knowledge base can provide you with the hardware requirements in order to prevent any potential compatibility issues.
Why OBD Fusion Is The Best
The core features of the OBD Fusion app are the engine scan and diagnostic tool. These features provide you with a visual display offering real-time graphs and gauges that detail engine performance. It provides key vehicle information, supports over 90 different performance indicators, and records all data logs which you can receive as an email or a CSV download.
To view the current MPG rating of your vehicle, the fuel efficiency monitor is a tremendous feature. It’ll even provide actual fuel consumption readings allowing you to optimize your engine for fuel efficiency. An incredibly handy feature for anyone looking to shave a few bucks on gas expenditures.
The real-time diagnostic codes will establish a clear understanding of the health of your engine. The app will provide you with every number of trouble codes that pop up in your vehicle. It also checks your vehicle for emission compliance, comes with GPS tracking, and offers multi-language support. The only major complication was the lack of Bluetooth connectivity support.
Regardless, OBD Fusion is a feature-rich, comprehensive scanning and diagnostic tool available right now in the App Store for $10. If you’re looking for an OBD to keep your engine optimized, you can’t go wrong with OBD Fusion.
The Best for Android – Torque Pro
The best OBD app you can currently nab for your Android device has got to be Torque, and more specifically, Torque Pro. Both Torque Lite and Pro are available on the Google Play store exclusively. Creating an app specifically for a single OS tends to insinuate that it should be rather finely tuned. This is, of course, not accurate in all cases but as for Torque Pro, it hits the nail on the head.
Similar to OBD Fusion, Torque Pro requires you have an OBD2 compatible device in order to read the ECU. Though, in order to test your vehicle’s performance data, you’ll need little more than the app itself. Unlike the OBD Fusion, Torque Pro supports Bluetooth connectivity.
Why Torque Pro Is The Best
Checking your vehicle’s performance data uses your smartphone’s GPS, compass, and accelerometer to acquire accurate analysis. It will display your car’s 0-30mph and 0-60mph capabilities directly on screen and allow you to log and export the position of your vehicle using the GPS.
The ability to diagnose the car’s ECU is likely the best feature of Torque Pro. Just connect your OBD2 device to the vehicle, pair up the app with the device via Bluetooth, and begin receiving real-time information from the vehicle immediately.
The real-time information received consists of gauges, performance figures, a map, clock, and compass, roll, and pitch meters, and more. The gauges are likely to be your focal point when using the app as they will display the speed of the car and engine, the status of the fuel and air, various temperatures including both coolant and air-take, and plenty of extra notable readings.
You can check for any trouble codes using the Fault Code mode, and, if the code is not initially identified, the Torque app will search the web in order to provide you a better diagnosis.
Torque Lite is free but pales in comparison to the Pro version. The full version will run you only $5 but if you feel that’s too much of a commitment, a free-trial version is also offered. If you truly want to be able to communicate with your vehicle to find exactly what’s bothering her, don’t skimp on the Pro.
Best of Both Worlds – BlueDriver Bluetooth Professional OBDII Scan Tool
This one feels a bit like cheating. The Bluedriver Bluetooth Professional OBDII is a scan tool that actually comes with its own app for both iOS and Android operating systems. The app and tool are paired using Bluetooth technology. It allows you to wirelessly diagnose and fix many of the issues you may have with the vehicle, saving you a few trips to your local mechanic.
The Bluedriver app is free to download and once downloaded, allows you to see real-time data as well as read and clear check engine light codes, do the component test and heated catalyst test, A/C refrigeration test, ABS misfire counts, and sensor tests.
Why BlueDriver OBDII App Is The Best
BlueDriver is known for making exceptional quality scan tools. One of the key features is how easy they are to use even for those with very basic knowledge of internal vehicle issues. You can set up and customize a personal dashboard with the options you find are a priority. This can save you loads of time with diagnostics.
For issues you can’t seem to fix on your own, BlueDriver allows you to create a log file and export all of the data to your computer. This sort of thing will be an incredible help to mechanics if you happen to run into a major issue that only they can rectify.
BlueDriver works with all manufacturer specific codes and allows you to diagnose issues with your speed and steering sensors, voltage issues, engine oil temperature, CEL (check engine light), and plenty more.
As it was meant for phones, downloading and using the app from a laptop will likely have poor performance and is not recommended. The app itself was meant for use by car enthusiasts and those willing to fix minor car issues on their own. A professional may feel that it lacks enough advanced features to be put to good use.
In the end, the Bluedriver OBDII scan tool is an awesome tool that provides its own app and makes car diagnostics relatively hassle-free. The app itself was made specifically with mobile phones in mind and therefore can be utilized easily and efficiently.