Scan Gauge

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 13:47
ThreadID: 100987 Views:4174 Replies:4 FollowUps:11
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G'Day All

I have a 2012 Mazda BT 50 which like most modern has few temp. or press. gauges. All one gets is an alarm indicating a fault. Trouble is, there is no indication of the actual fault. When you are stuck on hill #207 when crossing the Simpson Desert a flashing alarm ain't much use.
I understand that a scan gauge will help to pin point the fault.
BUT....when looking at what to buy there seems to be 300 million different models at 400 million different prices.
Anyone have experience at buying and using such a instrument?

If you wanna get to heaven first you must raise a little hell
OMD

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Reply By: Notso - Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 15:08

Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 15:08
Plenty of the around, here's another thought, There is an App called Torque that runs on android phones. You install an OBD2 Bluetooth adapter into the OBD2 port and it does all the same sort of things scan gauge does.

The app is free and you can buy the bluetooth adapters on EBay for next to nothing.
AnswerID: 506414

Follow Up By: Member - J&R - Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 20:30

Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 20:30
Torque will help to a small degree. It may pull up a code, which may give you an indication of what is wrong. Most of the time you will still need a tow.
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FollowupID: 783357

Follow Up By: Notso - Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 21:15

Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 21:15
Yeah, but some of us just like to know EH!

Gives us something to look at whilst waiting the cavalry!
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FollowupID: 783364

Follow Up By: Member - J&R - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 20:00

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 20:00
And one more bit of crap on the dashboard that distracts from the real job of DRIVING THE CAR ON A ROAD.
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FollowupID: 783478

Follow Up By: Notso - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 20:45

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 20:45
Just another tool. Do you have a Mobile phone? Or perhaps a GPS.
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FollowupID: 783484

Follow Up By: Member - J&R - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 22:00

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 22:00
Right on. More tools the better. The strange thing is....people with more tools spend more, with people like me. So bring it on.....
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FollowupID: 783495

Follow Up By: Member - J&R - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 22:10

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 22:10
Right on.
More toys the better, especially for armchair tradespeople.

Because the more toys, the more people spend with people like me.

So bring on the invasion of the worthless, useless, incomprehensible or 'things that enable us to know more' bits and pieces for those who need to know.
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FollowupID: 783497

Follow Up By: Notso - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 22:25

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 22:25
Long live curiosity, can't wait for the brain/Bluetooth interface then you could sell your 38 years of experience as a pain!
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FollowupID: 783501

Follow Up By: Notso - Monday, Mar 11, 2013 at 08:32

Monday, Mar 11, 2013 at 08:32
OOPs Plug in, Freudian slip!
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FollowupID: 783520

Reply By: Flighty ( WA ) - Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 20:54

Saturday, Mar 09, 2013 at 20:54
Phasar
Really think that with today's technology that scanguage and all the other mod cons available to us, is only something else to keep an eye on whilst travelling .
I have my vehicle fitted with both a chip and a 3" exhaust and really cannot justify the expense to be honest, okay the chip may generate more heat and the exhaust disposes it quicker so in real terms I personally think that it now is probably better than the original 2"system that came with the vehicle.
My thoughts would be "what temp am I supposed to be running at anyway" on the exhaust side, and as we all know every vehicle has it's own personality so to speak.
All oil pressures, water temperatures, and the like are individual to the vehicle concerned .
The old days of a capillary type oil gauge and a mercury filled line for temperature were by far the most accurate in my belief ,however nowadays we have the options of all these
gizmos to concentrate on.
I know there will be those who will shoot from the hip on this, but if you are on hill#27 on the Simpson with an issue, is a scanguage or anything else for that matter going to help?
By then the damage may have already been done, Myself I think I will continue with my daily checks and routine service and maintenance on my vehicle
Cheers
Paul

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AnswerID: 506432

Reply By: Member - Scooby (WA) - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 09:45

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 09:45
Hi Phasar,
I have fitted a Scangauge 2 into my 2012 Dmax and it works well. There is an Australian website where it can be purchased for around $160. I have a list of codes that the Scangauge will read and it will reset the code if needed. In my case the Scan gauge read many parameters out of the box, but the one I wanted to read (transmission temp) it would not. After some research I was was able to get more codes off the Web and programme the Scangauge using a function they call X Gauge and now I am reading trans temp. So, even though my Scangauge will read many different sensors the ones I have reading all the time whilst driving are trans temp, water temp. battery voltage and boost.
A very handy and versatile instrument.
Regards
Scooby
AnswerID: 506465

Reply By: olcoolone - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 12:38

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 12:38
A scantool is like a street directory..... it will show you where the street is in a known suburb but it will not tell you where the house is.

Codes can be thrown up for many reasons and a specific code may not indicate the problem..... it still comes down to good detective work and a good understanding.

We use three scantools that all have different capacities of diagnosis...... at $6000 to $11000 a piece we still have to go back to the good old way of fault diagnostics in many cases.

The cheap scantools are a toy with only emission related OBD, the better ones are OBD enhanced scantools with live data capture, live data read and vehicle specific codes.

Not knowing how to use a scantool and how to diagnose a problem can become a very expensive exercise..... and one we see a far bit from DIYers...... had one guy in a Commodore who replaced the fuel pump, filter and fuel pressure regulator him self only to be told it was a faulty relay causing a voltage drop when the vehicle got hot...... think he spent about 8hrs and $700 all for a $16 relay.

Cheap Scan tools tell very little unless it's a published known fault.
AnswerID: 506483

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 12:40

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 12:40
One other thing is if the vehicle is under warranty and you clear the fault code...... the dealer will not be able to claim repairs under warranty unless the fault code is present and they see it.
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FollowupID: 783405

Follow Up By: Member - J&R - Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 19:58

Sunday, Mar 10, 2013 at 19:58
Just one more bit of crap in the cabin to keep your eyes OFF the road, and the money out of your wallet.
But I wish all the armchair auto electricians/mechanics would fit them. Means more work for us....
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FollowupID: 783476

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Mar 11, 2013 at 09:20

Monday, Mar 11, 2013 at 09:20
Yeap have to agree.... the less stuff I have to look at the better.

I don't need to know pressures, temperatures and % because at the end of the day if I don't know what the norm is it's pointless knowing it at all.

I'm sure some people wanted to buy a 747 Jumbo but couldn't afford it.... so they just put a whole lot of useless switches, gauges and lights in to make them feel like they have a 747.

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FollowupID: 783524

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