There are fewer things more frustrating when you own a vehicle than when you see your Service Engine light pop on. It gives you no information except that it’s time to take it in and pay to find out what’s wrong. Canadian company Lemur Monitors has a device that will not only help diagnose why that pesky light came on, but it’ll also give you possible solutions and a whole lot more. Here’s my review of the BlueDriver OBD-II Scan Tool.
The BlueDriver is a bluetooth enabled OBD-II scan tool for your vehicle. Once connected to your vehicle, it lets you check your vehicles engine performance, understand error codes, help you know if your vehicle would pass a smog check, and a lot more, with the help of your iOS device. All this for $100.
Before you buy the BlueDriver you will want to make sure your vehicle is compatible. All North American vehicles sold since 1996 have to have an OBD-II port or data port installed. But depending on what make and model vehicle you have, you will get different information provided to you by the BlueDriver. So before you buy, I highly recommend you take a second and check on the Lemur Monitor website if your vehicle is supported and what information you will get.
Setup is a snap. First you have to download the free BlueDriver app. The app itself is very easy to use and has a super simple interface. Once you have the app, you need to find your vehicle OBD-II port, which is usually located under the steering column. It can be other places so you may need to check your vehicles manual. Once plugged in, and paired via bluetooth, it’s ready to go.
As I mentioned, once you open the app you are presented with a very simple to understand and use interface. If you’re vehicle service engine light has come on, you’ll want to tap on Read Codes. After quick scan, you should be presented with a Repair Report. This will give you a specific code which lets you know what’s wrong. Included along with the code, you get information about what the code means, possible cause, the top reported fixes, and other reported fixes.
Some of the possible fixes range from the super simple that anyone could do, to the the much more technically advanced that only a mechanic or someone good with repairing vehicles should try. So while in the end you may still have have to take your vehicle in for repair, there is the chance you might be able to fix it and save yourself some money.
For instance, my wife’s vehicle showed a P0455 code. We’d had a friend of ours who is a mechanic take a look at the vehicle when the service light came on, and he suggested first trying to replace the fuel cap. The BlueDriver also had that as a possible fix. And while the fix seemed to help for a few days, sadly it wasn’t the end fix – but for some it might be. If so, that’s a huge savings. Unfortunately for us we had the much bigger problem and had to take it in. And as the Repair Report indicated, the top reported fix was correct.
But the valuable information doesn’t stop there. By tapping Live, you can monitor various data for your vehicle on your mobile device in real time. You get to choose which data is monitored, from fuel pressure, intake air temperature, mass air flow rate and a lot more. It gets displayed nicely by coloured graphs on your mobile device, as I said, in real time.
Another great feature is Smog Check. If you need to get your vehicle tested and passed for emissions, this will help you know if you’re vehicle should pass or not. If there are problems, it’ll let you know and you can get them taken care of.
Want even more information? You’ve got it with Mode 6. Now from what I understand, this is something not found on most OBD-2 scanners. It gives you test results for all the on board diagnostic system monitors. So it checks all the monitors and makes sure they are working within the designed perimeters.
You can even get information on airbags, transmission, ABS and other module codes on some vehicles.
So as you can tell, you’re getting a ton of useful information from the BlueDriver. A lot of it may not mean a whole lot to you if you’re a vehicle novice, but it can really give you a good idea on potential issues and even possible fixes that can be a lot cheaper than bringing in your vehicle to a mechanic. If you are a car person, and you love fixing and tinkering, this is also a great device, and you’ll probably get a lot more out of it.
Overall, I’m really impressed with the BlueDriver and from what I can tell, Lemur Monitors is constantly updating information for all the vehicles the BlueDriver is compatible with. So that’s very reassuring. If you’re interested in the BlueDriver, you can pick one up HERE.