You might not think you have a need for a Bluetooth car scanner tool, but this can be a total game-changer when it comes to having a better idea of what’s ailing your car.
The use of a Bluetooth device makes monitoring the health of your car much easier.
Many of the best OBD2 Bluetooth scanning tools have high levels of connectivity to ensure that you don’t experience lags when it comes to getting the diagnostics you want from your vehicle’s onboard computer.
However, although it’s important, connectivity is just one feature to look for in this vital tool.
In the reviews of the products that follow, we’ll provide you with each of their pros and cons so that you can choose the best one for you and your specific car.
- 1 Best OBD2 Bluetooth – Reviews & Buying guide for 2021
- 2 OBD2 Bluetooth FAQ
- 3 Conclusion
Best OBD2 Bluetooth – Reviews & Buying guide for 2021
Best Overall: BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro
This professional diagnostic scan tool is both trusted by mechanics and has been developed by engineers, so it has a high level of quality.
Let’s see what features it has to offer, whether you’re experienced with using this type of device or you’re a complete beginner.
- If your “check engine” light is coming on in your car and won’t go away, alerting you to a problem that it’s experiencing, this best obd2 scanner Bluetooth device will enable you to read it and later clear it. You’ll gain vital information about what repairs you need to make on your car, instead of having to take your car to a mechanic.
- How this device works is that it syncs with the BlueDriver app that’s available on iOS and Android to provide you with a comprehensive solution for vehicle repairs that you need to have done.
- You’ll be able to receive unlimited and completely free vehicle-specific repair reports. These are produced from the company’s database of millions of errors and fixes, and it’s been verified by Professional Automotive Technicians.
- This code reader is beginner-friendly and easy to use. It has tons of features, such as giving you the opportunity to save your data and providing you with interactive graphing of live data so that it’s user-friendly.
- You’ll be able to get free app updates, and this is compatible with both Android and Apple devices.
- This device will do a free smog check so you can be guaranteed that your vehicle is ready to go to an emissions test and pass it with flying colors. This will also put you at ease that your car is not emitting dangerous pollutants at unsafe levels, contributing to air pollution.
- It comes with a convenient freeze-frame feature that you’ll find on high-quality OBD2 scanners. This is basically a vehicle snapshot that gets taken when a code is stored.
- This OBD2 Bluetooth scanning device comes with some extra diagnostics that are not offered on all vehicles. That said, all other features as well as code look-ups will be compatible with any vehicle that has an OBD2 port, so you’re sure to have enough data available no matter what vehicle you have.
- Some people who purchased this device have reported that it takes a few hours for it to discover the car’s sensors and emissions and start reading the data. This can make it feel like it takes too long to read the data you want when you start using it, but it could depend on the type of app you’re using as well as what car you have.
Runner Up: OBDLink MX
This best Bluetooth obd2 device can turn any iPad, Android, or iPhone device into a diagnostic scan tool for your vehicle.
Why should you purchase it? Here are our pros and cons.
- This is the best obd2 Bluetooth adapter, namely because of how it will work with a variety of devices, such as Torque, BimmerCode, AlfaOBD, FORScan, and many others.
- It also offers enhanced OEM support for a variety of car brands, such as Toyota, Honda, Kia, Ford, GM, Nissan, and Mazda.
- It offers live parameters for ABS (Anti-Braking System), TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System), SRS (Supplemental Restraint System), and more, and is said to have a greater variety than what you’ll find in other scanners that are on the market.
- In fact, it’s regarded as the only wireless iOS-compatible tool that supports GM-LAN and Ford MS-CAN networks, so you’ll be able to make use of loads of extra ECUs and thousands of trouble codes that are specific to your vehicle manufacturer.
- It offers a “clear check engine light” feature.
- It keeps your battery in good shape, thanks to its over-voltage and battery-drain protection features.
- It comes with firmware updates, so you can always make use of the latest version to get the most up-to-date diagnostic information without issues, such as lagging.
- If you forget about it plugged into your car’s OBD2 port, you don’t have to worry about it draining your car’s battery. This is thanks to its “sleep mode.” This is highly convenient if you’re the type of person who keeps forgetting to unplug your scanning tool!
- It offers quality graphs and gauges so that you can display more than one parameter at the same time. This is great because it will be easier to go through on your device.
- Some people have complained that this best Bluetooth OBD2 scan tool has a reset button that is of poor quality and tends to break.
- Others have said that the company’s customer support is not responsive or supportive enough.
Alternative: Veepeak OBDCheck
This OBD2 Bluetooth car scanning tool has all the features you can find on other quality devices, but a few extra packed into it. Let’s check them out to see if it’s right for you.
- This Veepeak Bluetooth vehicle scanner adapter is compatible with many third-party apps such as Torque Pro, Car Scanner ELM OBD2, and OBD Fusion. It turns your device into an instant car scanning tool, without the hassle or stress of trying to set it up.
- Just like with other scanning devices, this one is capable of freeze-framing your data and displaying diagnostic trouble codes. You can also make use of a smog test, reset the “check engine” light, and more.
- One of the additional features that you’ll love is that this tool can estimate your fuel economy. This is fantastic to help you maintain the performance of your car.
- It also gives you the chance to customize your dashboard for seamless, convenient usage.
- It’s beginner-friendly, thanks to how you don’t have to follow complicated settings in order to set it up and start using it.
- This device is not compatible with many Android head units.
- Some people who have purchased this Bluetooth scanning tool have reported that it’s a bit slow when used with some apps.
- Others have said that the instruction booklet is not of a good quality, which can make understanding it a bit tricky at first, especially if you’ve never used a Bluetooth scanner before.
Alternative: OBDLink LX
One of the things you might find essential in a Bluetooth car scanner is that it works fast. You don’t want to waste time waiting for the information to reach you.
If that applies to you, you’ll want to get your hands on this OBDLink LX Bluetooth scanner.
- This device is compatible with your laptop, Windows PC, or smartphone. You’ll love being able to enjoy accurate and fast diagnostic information. In fact, it’s said to be up to four times faster than its competitors.
- It’s easy to install, so it’s great for beginners.
- You can leave it plugged into your car without worrying that it’s going to drain your battery.
- It comes with a free Android app and Windows software, while also being compatible with various third-party apps, such as DashCommand and Torque.
- It’s versatile. You can use this with many more OBD2 vehicles than other scanner tools on the market. It will also support JOBD (Japanese On-Board Diagnostics), EOBD (European On-Board Diagnostics), as well as other international variants of OBD2.
- This best obd2 Bluetooth adapter for torque pro is focused on keeping you safe. Unlike other adapters, it makes use of strong encryption and doesn’t use weak PINs or broadcasts its presence. This is important because it prevents hackers.
- Even though it has features that can give it the title of the best obd2 Bluetooth android device, it’s not compatible with iOS devices.
- Some people who have purchased this device have reported issues with its firmware updates.
- It doesn’t rate as high as other devices when it comes to its connectivity, so that’s something to bear in mind before purchasing it.
Alternative: Bafx Products Bluetooth
This tool works on all vehicles that were made in 1996, and is compatible with all OBD2 protocols, including CAN as well as J1850.
With that in mind, let’s see what else you can gain by using this Bafx Bluetooth car scanner.
- It offers real-time data. This enables you to monitor the vehicle’s sensors in real-time, such as when it comes to fuel pressure and O2. This will ensure the good functioning of your car, especially because O2 sensors inform the car’s computer of whether or not there’s enough, too much, or too little oxygen in the fuel.
- It works with a variety of popular OBD2 apps, such as Piston, Torque Pro, OBD Fusion, and Dash Command. This means that you won’t have to feel limited when choosing an app you want to use to scan your vehicle
- It offers a reliable connection and is easy to set up within minutes.
- You can easily use this device to read and clear error codes.
- It has a fast live-data refresh rate, so you’ll feel that it’s always ready to give you the information you need about your vehicle.
- It’s not compatible with iOS devices. It only works with Windows and Android devices.
- It does not read ABS (Anti-Lock Braking System), TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System), oil change, and SRS (Supplemental Restraint System) lights, the latter of which have to do with the airbags of your car. This can make the device feel a bit limited, especially if you want to gain that data.
OBD2 Bluetooth FAQ
After reading our reviews of the best OBD2 Bluetooth scanning tool, you might have some questions about these types of devices.
Let’s check out some common questions related to how these tools work and how to set them up.
How do I connect to OBD Bluetooth?
Before you can connect your OBD Bluetooth car scanner to your vehicle, you have to ensure that it’s compatible with your car.
Most OBD2 scanners will be able to work with cars that were made in, or after, 1996, but it’s still worth checking to be sure.
- Then, find your car’s OBD2 port. This is usually found in close proximity to the steering wheel, beneath the dashboard. You might find that your OBD2 port has a protective cover or latch.
- Once you’ve connected the device to the car’s OBD2 port, you will turn on the car’s ignition without turning on your car.
- Then, you will have to locate the app on your smartphone device. When purchasing an OBD Bluetooth scanner, you will be notified of scanning apps that are compatible with it, so you’ll have to download one of those to your device. Make sure that if you have a Windows/Android/iOS device the app will be compatible with it.
- The next step is pairing the Bluetooth scanner with your device. To do this, you’ll have to go to your phone’s settings and wireless networks and choose Bluetooth settings. Turn on Bluetooth.
- You will see a list of nearby devices come up and from there you’ll choose the scanner.
- Once you’ve paired the device and scanner, you’re ready to go and the scanner will be able to start scanning your car for any problems.
Can you leave Bluetooth OBD plugged in?
While it’s usually safe to keep OBD2 devices plugged into your car’s port, sometimes you’ll find that these devices can drain your car’s battery. So, it’s usually advised not to keep them plugged in.
However, there are some Bluetooth car scanners that are designed in such a way that they won’t drain your car’s battery.
As we’ve seen in our list of reviews of the best scanning tools, such devices include OBDLink MX+ OBD2 Bluetooth Scanner for iPhone, Android, and Windows.
This also has features in place to protect your battery, so it’s good for your car. Another Bluetooth scanning tool that won’t drain your battery if you leave it plugged in is the OBDLink LX Bluetooth scanner.
If you want a Bluetooth scanner that won’t drain your battery should you forget to unplug it when you leave your car, or if you want the convenience of not having to keep plugging and unplugging the device, then those are worth considering for purchase.
How do I connect my iPhone to OBD2 Bluetooth?
When connecting your iPhone specifically to an OBD2 Bluetooth device, the first important thing you need to do is ensure that your Bluetooth car scanner is compatible with your iPhone device.
As we’ve seen in our reviews, not all Bluetooth car scanners will be able to work with iOS devices.
Once you’ve ensured that your iPhone is compatible with the scanner, you can follow these steps, which are similar to the ones we’ve outlined earlier in this article.
- Choose and download an OBD2 app from the Apple iTunes store, ensuring that it’s compatible with your device.
- Then, locate your car’s OBD2 port.
- Plug the Bluetooth scanner into your OBD2 port.
- Turn on the ignition of your car.
- Go to your iOS device settings. Choose Bluetooth so that you will be able to connect to the scanner tool’s Bluetooth.
- Once you’ve seen the tool show up in the list of Bluetooth devices, you can connect to it.
- Start the car’s engine. Sometimes you’ll find that you have to put your car on in order to collect data from the engine.
What is an OBD blocker?
One of the dangers that have been outlined regarding OBD scanners is that they can provide freely available information to anyone who knows how to use the OBD port of a car.
Since the OBD also controls your car’s security, this can be used to steal your car, especially if you consider that keyless car theft is becoming popular.
These concerns have given rise to OBD blockers.
The OBD Blocker is an actual device that, as its name suggests, blocks unauthorized communication through the car’s OBD port to your vehicle.
This prevents unauthorized activities and programming that you don’t want to be done on your car, such as key programming so that thieves can steal it.
How it works is that the OBD blocker will be attached to the OBD port in the car and it prevents communication with the car’s immobilizer. This blocks emergency starts and new-key programming.
The great thing about it is that it’s easy to install in less than 20 minutes and you can enable the port with a personalized tag for convenient usage.
The OBD blocker will work normally to monitor your car and provide diagnostics, but it needs to be activated with your security tag before it can be accessed, therefore working to keep your car safer.
You can find out more about OBD Blocker by checking out its website.
You don’t always want to bring your car to your mechanic whenever you get an error code or the “check engine” light comes on.
With a convenient and user-friendly Bluetooth scanning tool, you don’t have to. Your smartphone device and the compatible app can become your mechanic!
In this article, we’ve looked at five of the best OBD2 Bluetooth tools to scan your car in easier and more convenient ways.
We’ve also answered some common questions about these scanners and how to use them for the best results, so you can save money on your car while keeping it in excellent condition.