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Obd2 Code Readers


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#1
NickR

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Now I have an OBD2 car, I have to bite the bullet, retire my trusty paperclip, and buy an OBD2 code reader. I did a bit of research on the net, but couldn't find a clear answer. I have two OBD2 cars in my garage: a 2000 626 V6, and my daughter's 1999 Toyota Tercel (which is currently showing a cel). I want to buy a code reader which will work for both cars.

As far as I can tell, some code readers are specific for particular makes of cars. Is this true? If so, are Mazda and Toyota code readers interchangeable (will a code reader which works on one also work on both)?

Also, any recommendations for where I could look to buy a cheap one in Canada? I looked in Canadian Tire, but the only one they had on display cost $400, which I thought was a bit steep. (Being an old guy, I am a bit nervous about buying stuff on Ebay).

I am a bit lost in the OBD2 world. All my carefully-learned knowledge about OBD1 is now useless (along with all my carefully-learned 40-year-old knowledge about how to adjust contact points in a distributor, etc.). Thanks.

#2
audiqv8

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The following code reader will work for the 626 v6. It allow you to read and reset codes. For under $50.00 bucks it's not bad.

http://www.harborfre...temnumber=94168

You could also buy and OBDII cable and hook it up to your computer. There are some shareware softwares out there that are pretty good.

Scantool.net 1.13
Proscan
OBD2Spy

#3
jpit

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I have the 'Carchip EX' by davis instruments and it's good for reading codes as well as logging data such as fuel trim, oxygen sensor readings, coolant temp, car speed, rpm and a few other parameters. it's very small and plugs into the obd2 connector and can be left there. You then connect it to your computer via usb and read out the info. You can print graphs if you feel like it. I have used it on my 626, Volvo S60, and Honda Odyssey. What it DOESN'T do is store freeze frame data, the data that is stored at the time of the actual failure. This can be helpful in troubleshooting.

Because of this if I were to buy another one I would go with the Actron CP9175. They have dropped in price and can be purchased for about $110 USD. Here are a couple of links:

Actron site

Amazon cp9175

I would also purchase the cp9137 cable with it so that you can get internet updates for the cp9175. I have had a few updates that gave me extra functions on my carchip, the latest one being fuel mileage calculation, although you have to log each fillup.

I know how you feel about ebay. I imagine that we are pretty close in age and the only stuff I will buy from ebay is if it's brand new and the seller has near perfect feedback!

#4
twiggy144

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I bought the Innova from Canadian tire, part 25-1030-4. I used it very often, and am very satisfied with it. Easy to use. Reg price is 249,99 but 3 or 4 times a year it comes on sale for $150, this is the price I paid, since I was watching the weekly flyers for the next sale to come around. I went this route instead of the $110 US on ebay, which would have come close to $150 CAD with currency exchange, duty, shipping cost.


http://www.canadiant...fromSearch=true

#5
flora macdonald

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Hi Nick:

I've seen them go on sale at Canadian Tire for $100.00. Remember, you don't need one that is Can-Bus capable. It's too bad you don't want to try E-Bay...this guy is very reliable!

http://stores.ebay.com/alpha-bid

and has a selection for around $50

Flora

#6
snailman153624

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I have the Harbor Freight special, and it works find on our '99 626, as well as my '05 Altima. Haven't tried it on the '96 MX6 yet (no CEL).

#7
NickR

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Thanks for the good advice, everyone!

#8
Trebuchet03

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I have the Harbor Freight special, and it works find on our '99 626, as well as my '05 Altima. Haven't tried it on the '96 MX6 yet (no CEL).



The harbor freight one also works on a 2000 Toyota Solara (so it **should** work with the tercel).

It appears not to work with my 2000 petrol VW Jetta (just a heads up if someone finds this in a search).

I have had mixed results with Hondas (especially the ones where the OBD connector is behind the ash tray or something like that) :rolleyes:

#9
snailman153624

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Sadly my '96 MX-6 threw a CEL over the weekend, and the code-reader is NOT compatible. Oh well, all the more reason to swap in my OBD-I harness (not to mention the ZE VRIS and fewer O2 sensors...).

#10
flora macdonald

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Hi Snailman:

Just curious as to why it would be compatible with a 99 626 and not a 96 MX6.

Flora

#11
twiggy144

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Starting tomorrow, Canadian tire will have a sale, an Innova OBDII reader reg $180 for $!00.

#12
NickR

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That's great! Thanks twiggy! And I nearly bought one yesterday, but fortunately I held off, because flora said they often go on sale.

#13
snailman153624

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Hi Snailman:

Just curious as to why it would be compatible with a 99 626 and not a 96 MX6.

Flora


Probably because Mazda switched protocols at some point, but your guess is as good as mine.

#14
audiqv8

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Probably because Mazda switched protocols at some point, but your guess is as good as mine.



Mazda use ISO 9141 protocol
Mazda-Ford use J1850-41.6 protocol

The 626 use J1850-41.6

See link for additional info

http://www.etools.or...ls-02-17-03.htm

#15
brian passarelli

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although, I could swear that the obc2 spec's required cars to be reader only, I SWEAR TO YOU that ther eare many cars that have paper clip like simple ways to get the codes, without a reader. i dont know if toyota has it. but it could. nissans and hondas with obd2 have ways of getting the code without a reader -- much like the obd1 mazda, except not using a paperclip. so try looking up a way with the toyota. i am sure though the mazda obd2 cars require a reader from reading on this site for 3 yrs.




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