Automotive Diagnostic Tools - paul adam
Virtually all modern cars require these infernal ECUs' to be interogated using a diagnostic tool when the MIL illuminates on the dashboard. My questions are: what is the difference, if any, between a 'code reader' and a 'diagnostic tool'? I have read that in 2001, due to legislation in the USA aimed at reducing emissions, all codes had to be standardized, is this so? Are the codes universal to all manufacturers? Would a hand held tool costing £80ish be sufficient for the DIY mechanic like me? Would any diagnostic tool suffice? because the spread of prices seems bewildering. Basically, I wanna do it myself.

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 23/01/2008 at 10:18

Automotive Diagnostic Tools - adverse camber
so whats the link for? Is this an advert? {If it was, it's now been deleted. DD}

Some codes are standard. Manufacturers also have their own, its in the documentation.

The difference between a code reader and a diag tool is that a code reader will read the engine fault codes.
There are far more ecus than just the main engine one. A good diag tool will deal with all the systems in a car. and often offer real time data rather than fault codes only.
As to which you need, depends what you want. Vag-Com were developing a bmw tool.

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 23/01/2008 at 10:18


Ask Honest John

Value my car