Scan Tool Review

Scan Tool Review: Scan Tools Change

Research Before You Buy After covering about 30 manufacturers in 12 months, most of our heads are probably still spinning. As this series closes, I’d like to take a minute to explain how it came to be. In 2009, I realized that there was no place a shop owner or tech could go to start […]

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Scan Tool Review: Euro Wrap-Up

European scan tools Shops that sell themselves as all-makes shops will most likely work on the makes listed below on occasion. Knowing the correct tool may be invaluable to getting yourself out of a jamb! In alphabetical order, here is a list of scan tools for most of the Euro vehicles imported in the United […]

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Scan Tool Review: Tools for Mercedes-Benz, smart Car Good Investment

Karl Benz is credited with the invention of the gasoline-powered automobile, the 1886 Benz Patent Motorwagen. And Mercedes-Benz (MB) has remained a front-runner in building automobiles for almost a century and a half. Boasting a company slogan of “Das beste oder nichts” (“The best or nothing”), Mercedes-Benz has a rich history of making automobiles replete […]

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Scan Tool Review: BMW/MINI/Rolls Royce

When I was tasked by ASA to do this scan tool series, the manufacturer I was most concerned about writing on was BMW. To quote a friend of mine, “If you don’t know what scan tool you need to work on BMWs, you should not be working on BMWs.” While this may seem a bit […]

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Scan Tool Review: Nissan/Infiniti, Subaru, Isuzu, Suzuki

This month, we touch on some of the smaller (in the U.S. market) Japanese manufacturers: Nissan/Infiniti, Subaru, Isuzu and Suzuki. Nissan/Infiniti Nissan’s early computers used the Engine Computer Control System (ECCS), which was integrated into the electronic control module (ECM) with a series of lights in the ECM that indicated a concern when a test […]

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Scan Tool Review: KIA/Hyundai/Mitsubishi

This month we look at KIA, Hyundai and Mitsubishi KIA Though they are South Korea’s oldest car manufacturer, KIA has only been selling cars in the United States since about 1994. As a result, they are in the unique position of having a near-100 percent OBD-II lineup and almost no “OBD-I only” scan tool. The […]

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Scan Tool Review: Volkswagen/Audi

To work on Volkswagen-Audi Gelelschaft (VAG) automobiles, a technician must first understand “measuring blocks.” This is the primary way information is displayed with VW software. This can be difficult for the technician because often the “blocks” are not specifically labeled with anything beyond their block number. Having good service information is critical for any Audi/VW […]

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Scan Tool Review: Toyota/Lexus/Scion & Honda/Acura

Mastertech 3100 was used as Toyota’s original tool. Referred to as the “Intelligent Tester” in Toyota’s service information, this is the same Mastertech 3100 available to aftermarket shops except that it has an OEM Toyota card. It offers great coverage on OBD-I and OBD-II systems, as well as all body and chassis systems up until […]

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Scan Tool Review: Ford/Mazda

An overview of Ford’s scan tools, including NGS, PDS and IDS As part of our monthly series of scan tool reviews, this issue we are bringing Ford to the microscope. Until recently, Ford and Mazda shared platforms and subscriptions so I am also going to touch briefly on Mazda. The original scan tool for Ford […]

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Scan Tool Review: Chrysler

Chrysler’s DRB3, StarScan, StarMobile and wiTECH scan tools are assessed. Chrysler Corp. has had significant changes to scan tool platforms in the past decade. This can make it tough for a shop to know what they need to have complete competence on everything Mopar. The DRB2 was the original scan tool. While technically there was […]

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Scan Tool Review: GM

GM’s Tech 1/Tech1A, Tech2 and GDS2 scan tools are assessed. In the world of OEM scan tools it would be hard to think of any manufacturer who has made it easier for the independent repairer to have factory-level diagnostic capability than General Motors. GM has basically used three scan tool platforms in the past 30-plus […]

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