6 Best Scan Tools For Mechanics: At Home or Shop Use
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Being an automotive workshop owner is not considered to be an easy job, regardless of how attractive it might seem. As an automobile repair professional you would definitely be dealing with different types of vehicles on daily basis
There might be times that you’ll end up making the wrong decision simply because you were unable to accurately identify a car’s problem. This could be embarrassing and costly. That being said, you need not just a diagnostic scanner but the best scan tool for mechanics either the at ‘home’ or garage professional.
If you’re curious to know among numerous engine scanners in the market today claiming to be the best scan tool for professional auto mechanics. After all, you deserve nothing less than the best
In this article we have done the hard work for you even gone the extra mile of undertaken the additional hassle of conducting research on this. All you have to do is keep reading below. After going through this whole report, you will be able to understand more of what you should look out for in an automotive diagnostic scanner specifically produced for automobile mechanics like you.
6 Best Scan Tool For Mechanic Shop or at Home DIY
1) Autel Maxisys Elite Diagnostic (Upgraded Version of MS908P Pro)
There is absolutely no doubt that Autel is regarded as a legend where diagnostic scan tools are concerned. That is why when you hear the brand name, you automatically come to the conclusion that this product would indeed be one of the best diagnostic scan tool anybody could ever wish for. So, if you are also looking for affirmation for this spectacular diagnostic tool, you would definitely be able to get it.
With accurate analysis, diagnosis and repairs, this diagnostic scan tool has been found to be ideal both for first-timers and professional mechanics. This is because the code scanner is well able to handle first-hand troubleshooting of code errors and bugs.
The one-stop multitasking has been designed for ideal management of workshop operations. This means that you would be able to keep all your customer information, data files, and vehicle records well-organized. When you come to think about it, it would indeed make your life vastly easier since all your pertinent information would be stored in one place. simply put, whenever you would require something, you would know where to retrieve it from.
The exceptional OE-level functionality would be able to provide you with advanced ECU programming and coding. The automatic automotive OBD2 scanner also tends to come with scanner system and software updates. With real-time push message notifications and instant remote control tech support via the internet anytime, you would never find yourself to be alone.
The interactive data logging sessions would also enable you to get in touch with Autel directly. This just goes on to show how far ahead Autel had thought of when designing this diagnostic scan tool. No matter what kind of rut or unfamiliar situation you might land yourself in, you would easily be able to navigate your way out of it.
Another amazing feature of the Autel Maxisys Elite seem to be its extensive vehicle coverage. With almost 80 domestic, US, and European makes and models, this has been termed to be the most extensive diagnostic scanner code reader that you would be able to lay your hands on. Lastly, the scan tool has also been rubberized in the case of outer protection and a rugged internal housing.
As you could easily guess, this will be like the perfect combination for a diagnostic scan tool as you would be able to get the best of both worlds.
You can read my full review of Autel Maxisys Elite here.
Since we have already highlighted some of the most important and attractive features of this product, it would also be a good idea to see whether customer reviews also have to say the same thing or not. According to the several sources that we have received statements from, the feedback seems to be highly positive and satisfactory.
According to one individual who has been a master technician for the last thirty years, he has definitely come across a wide array of diagnostic scan tools. In his opinion, he has found this one to be hands down the most universal scanner that he has used till date.
There has never come a time when he has faced issues with the Bluetooth connection. The programs tend to key perfectly, the live data seems to be processed quite fast, and the bi-directional controls tends to work flawlessly. All in all, this would hands down be the best scan tool that you would be able to find in the market today.
2) OTC 3893 Encore Professional Diagnostic Tool Kit
Among the best scan tool for home mechanics or automotive workshop, you would find the OTC 3893 Encore Professional WI-FI Enabled Diagnostic Tool Kit. This is because this deluxe kit is a powerful and professional diagnostic tool that could be found at an affordable price point for every technician out there.
This model is the company’s first integrated scan tool for Android. This means that it tends to capitalizes on ease of use, speed, and functionality of the operating system. The best part is that the OTC 3893 Encore does not tend to stray far away as an OTC diagnostic product.
This is because they managed to take the best parts and then integrate it with the Android system. The end result that you would be getting is not only a tool but also a tablet that would understand the mobile and busy life of every automobile mechanic.
In this diagnostic tool, you’ll find Wi-Fi built in and embed with Google search. This is to provide you with the ability to search for a DTC and vehicle with just the touch of a button. The Deep-Link to Identifix Direct-Hit would also provide a one-touch login, DTC selection, and vehicle with search initiated automatically.
In addition, if you would find yourself in a rut, then training videos have been embedded that would allow you to learn on the spot.
Since this is the Encore version that we’re talking about, you would obviously be experiencing lots of improvements that has been made from previous version. This has been done in terms of 30 years of OEM level coverage. Critical emphasis has been placed on the most common vehicles which every technicians has to deal with from day to day.
The next thing I would like to talk about is the user/customer reviews of this professional diagnostic scanner. After all, the best way to evaluate the credibility of a product is by hearing what past & current customers and actual users have to say about it.
According to one reviewer, they have found the Encore Professional Diagnostic Tool Kit to be a very capable diagnostic scan tool for a wide range of cars. They also love the fact that OTC manufacturers is backing this product with lifetime software updates and hardware warranty.
The Android operating system also seems to be quite lightweight compared to the previous operating systems. In addition, it’s also packed with more fantastic features such as sensor operation, connector pin diagrams, etc. You will also find useful videos to help you through a diagnostic process.
Get it at a 29% discount on Amazon
3) Launch X431
The Launch X431 is termed to have Android 5.1 which would also be dubbed as the most utilized UTI, there would be very few things that you would not like about this diagnostic scan tool. This is because thanks to the Android interface, you would be offered an interface that would not only be quite easy to use but would also provide powerful functions, vehicle diagnosis and quick auto scanning.
In addition, the touchscreen user would also be quite easy to learn. The Launch X431 would also boast of the best hardware. This would be because it tends to have a larger storage capacity, higher hardware configuration, faster processor, latest display technology, and a bigger battery. This means that you would be able to use this for an extended period of time without having to worry about the battery dying out.
Thanks to the Bluetooth OBDII connector module and with function, you would be able to enjoy wireless convenience with any vehicle. Also, since you would not be required to be wired with the vehicle, you would be able to use this diagnostic scan tool to repair, run scanning and diagnostic tests while doing other maintenance tasks at the workbench or even while being under the hood.
So while you have found yourself to be accustomed with all the features that the Launch X431 has to provide, it would now be time to talk about what people have to say about it. The general consensus is that this would indeed be a powerful product and there is no doubt that you would be able to get bang for your buck.
However, the key to using this tablet would be the registration and setup. Since the pre-installed car model data would be quite limited, it would be better to get registration done so that you would be able to download all the latest data updates.
In terms of the registration, you would find it to be old school and something which you would easily be able to do. One thing that you would have to bear in mind is that registration would not be complete unless you email the company with the serial number.
All that being said, this scan tool would not disappoint you performance and price-wise. Since it tends to live up to all its practices, even the minor hitches would not be bugging you. In addition, with a life expectancy of five years, you would definitely be lucking out.
Hence, these would be all that there is to say regarding the best scan tool for mechanics. As you would be able to understand by now, all of them seem to have some minor flaws here and there. But once you overlook all those, you would be able to see that these would indeed be successful in giving you optimum performance and value for your money. That being said, it should not be that difficult to shell out this amount if you would be getting something so good.
4) Autel Maxisys MS906BT
While still continuing the discussion about the best diagnostic scan tool for mechanics, we would also take some time out to discuss Autel Maxisys MS906BT. While you might think that you are much better off and comfortable with the previous version, you would soon change your mind upon reading the advantages that this latest model has to offer. Some of them are as follows:
- This has Bluetooth installed in it which means that you would be able to conduct diagnosis wireless. Needless to say, that would indeed be quite a huge benefit since it would mean that you would be able to walk around the vehicle and conduct tests rather than remaining attached to it
- The diagnostic coverage seems to include premium vehicle brands such as Bentley and Maserati which would definitely be required for high-end service shops. Again, even though you might think this would not be a feature that you would require, you would be lucky to have this diagnostic scan tool by your side. This is because if you would be successful in repairing a premium and luxurious car such as a Maserati or Bentley, there is no saying which heights your reputation would reach
- This model also tends to support digital inspection camera and oscilloscope – something which you would not be able to find in the previous version
- This has the capability to perform coding for covered vehicles.
In terms of size, you would find both the previous and latest versions to be quite similar. However, there is no way that you would be able to overlook the improvements that seem to have been made in terms of slightly larger screen, faster processor, better camera, and twice the battery capacity.
Where its positive sides are concerned, there seem to be quite a bit. According to the people who seem to have used it, they have been highly satisfied with its performance. Considered to be a great unit with good communication, this vehicle diagnostic scan tool would easily be able to identify the problems and then conduct diagnosis.
In addition, the scanner seems to be quite easy and simple to use, thus making a great tool for daily use. Even though one user seems to have complained about getting no communication for Audi, he has also commented that it tends to work quite well with Ford models. All that being said, this would indeed be a good buy, regardless of what people would have to say about it being overpriced and not offering value for money.
5) OTC Tools 3895 Genisys touch deluxe kit
The next best diagnostic scan tool for mechanics that we would be talking about is the OTC tools 3895 Genisys touch deluxe kit. Considered to be the professional diagnostics kit for every technician and a Window-based operating system, you would easily be able to expect powerful running.
This also tends to feature OEM-level coverage which means that majority of the makes and models that would be seen by technicians everyday would be featured. This also tends to include critical special tests and over 30 million experience-based repair solutions for Asian, domestic, and European vehicles.
Thanks to the wireless VCI, you would be able to diagnose, scan, and fix even without being attached to the vehicle. The wireless VCI that has been included with the Genisys Touch would use a long-range Bluetooth connection which would allow you to walk around while scanning and running tests.
When you come to think about, this would indeed be quite a good bonus. After all, there would only be so much that you could be attached to one vehicle. With the help of the Bluetooth feature, you would be able to continue doing your work without having to be all over the vehicle. In addition, if you are looking for increased diagnostic capabilities, then you could pair this diagnostic tool with the optional OTC 3857 2-channel lab scope or 3834T TPMS.
The next segment that we are going to be talking about are its good and bad parts. According to one user, this has by far been one of the finer diagnostic scanner tools that we have used. If you seem to be experiencing VCI issues with the cable, then this would seem like a good tool.
On the other hand, some highly negative feedback has been received as well. Starting from the touchy communication issues, we could trace the problems to the lock up phase and the intermittently slow response.
If that was not enough, another user has also complained about the large gaps which could be found in readable data stream information. After that, the user also found missing active commands. Even if the function seems to exist, it would not work. So, while these would be just some of the examples that seem to exist, there seems to be more.
All that being said, if you would be an experienced mechanic or workshop owner, this would not be the diagnostic scan tool for you.
6) Pegisys 3825JT diagnostic system
If you are looking for an advanced diagnostic scan tool, then the Pegisys 3825JT would be the way to go. It has been found to be one of the best diagnostic scan tool for mechanics and that too with good reason. With around 30 years of vehicle coverage, it would surely come as a surprise if you would not be able to find your car make and model in the list. And once you would manage to find your car, you would be highly impressed with the list of diagnostic solutions that this diagnostic scan tool has to provide. The best part about about this handset version is that it has been designed in a way so that you would be able to get more freedom to work productively.
In that case, only the Pegisys technology would allow you to choose the PC diagnostic system or the handset version, as per your convenience and diagnostic platform. In addition, the exclusive AirBridge wireless technology would keep you unattached from the vehicle while also allowing you to get the job done. With ergonomic handle for enhanced mobility and user comfort, along with foot pedal for quick approach of saddle – this diagnostic scan tool would indeed be a joy to use.
In terms of customer reviews, it has not been found to be highly favorable. Even though this might come as a shock to hear, this is indeed true. This is because the Pegisys 3825JT has everything going for it and yet it manages to fall short where expectations are concerned.
According to one customer who has owned this for around 2.5 years, he has commented that it is not worth the money at all. In addition to it being slow, he would have a hard time doing a lot of simple bi-directional functions that could easily be done in the other diagnostic scan tools with just the flick of a button. The only saving grace which seems to exist in this diagnostic scan tool is the lab scope which appears to be quite nice.
Therefore, in terms of the price being charged, it just does not seem to live up to the hype. The worst part is that you might be unable to resell and recover your money which actually seems to be quite a bummer. So, regardless of whether you would be an amateur or a professional mechanic and workshop owner, this would be one scan tool that you should be maintaining your distance from.