When the Check Engine Light comes on, most drivers usually don't know what to make out of it. Many just know that something's up with the vehicle. With a scan tool, however, it's easy to figure out what's wrong with the vehicle even without much knowledge about its inner workings. The diagnostic scanner will do the work of an automotive technician and analyze the trouble codes. With this device on hand, it will be easy to troubleshoot problems. In order to find the best, we've tried an Actron scan tool to see how it works. We picked Actron's OBD-II PocketScan Plus and rated its performance.
- Compatible with 1996 and newer vehicles (OBD-II & CAN)
- Automatically reads DTCs (diagnostic trouble codes) when connected
- Displays OBD-II generic code definitions
- Reads, shows, and deletes DTCs
- Reads and displays MIL (malfunction indicator light) status, I/M (inspection maintenance) monitors, pending codes, freeze frame data, and VIN
- Powered by car battery through the 16-pin OBD-II connector
- Comes with a user manual
- What we like about the PocketScan is that it's compact. The small size of this scan tool makes it easy to store and further adds to its convenience.
- It does exactly as advertised. We've tried it on three different cars, and every time, the scan tool is able to read the trouble codes correctly. It performs advanced OBD-II diagnostics, works fast, and is very accurate.
- It's easy to use. It has an easy-to-read backlit display and convenient buttons. The screen easily displays valuable diagnostic information. The user manual walked us through the whole thing.
- The scan tool is easy to set up through the 16-pin OBD-II connector. It's CAN compliant, and with this functionality, it's able to work with the diagnostic subsystems in the vehicle.
- For what it can do, it's priced just right.
- This scanner does exactly what it says it can do, but compared to other scan tools, the features are quite limited. It lacks some of the more sophisticated diagnostic specs of some code readers. A mechanic may ask for a more advanced diagnostic tool, although for a DIYer, the tool is a neat option.
What we think
Actron's compact scan tool offers a lot in terms of functionality, although it lacks other features found in more advanced scan tools. It' small, simple to use, easy to set up, and does exactly what it promises. It also comes at a reasonable price. For DIYers like us, this is a winner in our book.