OBD II – Automotive Diagnostic Scan Tool
If you have ever wondered why your “check engine” light is illuminated in your car, this tool will give you the answers. The Autel MaxiScan MS300 not only reads the codes stored in your car’s computer, it also can determine if/when all of the sensors are ready, and it can ERASE the error codes!
All cars manufactured and/or sold in the US after January 1996 come standard with an “on-board diagnostic system”. Among other things, this system monitors all of the electronic components that are part of the emissions system and records any errors that are detected. Once an error is detected multiple times, the computer then will display the dreaded “check engine” light. While many auto parts stores will use an OBD II scanner to read the codes at no charge, most service locations will charge a minimum of one hour of labor – this could mean spending at least $100 just to know what you need to fix.
Once you have used the scanner and have the codes, a simple Google search will give you the details about the errors and the parts involved. From there, your fix could be an easy DIY project such as changing a spark plug (there are a lot of YouTube videos for repairs on many cars). Your issue also might be something temporary and not necessarily needing immediate repair. Use the tool to erase the codes, which will turn of the “check engine” light, and see if the error codes come back. If you’re like me and live in an area requiring regular emissions testing to renew your registration, this could be the best $20 you ever spent.