Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Will a home code reader/scanner let me fix my car?

asked by on

Can I fix my car with a home code reader/scanner?

A: Aftermarket code readers and scanners canno...

Aftermarket code readers and scanners cannot, by themselves, be used to fix your car. The scanner is used to retrieve diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) from the various control modules on the vehicle. After using your scanner to retrieve DTCs, you must compare these codes to a DTC index to find the appropriate series of tests that are used to diagnose the system. These readers only helps allow you to pinpoint faulty components. The repairs themselves are done separately.

To fix your car, will you need access to the diagnostic tests as well as the necessary testing equipment. Having a home reader, however, may allow you to clear a malfunction indicator lamp (MIL).

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: I have a 2000 dodge ram 2500 and it wont shift gears so I plugged in my code reader to see if it would pull up anycodes vut no pwr

Often, this is caused by a blown fuse in the battery power circuit of the OBD port. It is pin #16 that is B+ on all modern vehicles, such as yours. It appears as though this is fuse #12 on...

Q: Check Engine Light codes. 2006 Mercedes Benz E55 AMG

Since you are getting many different codes from different areas of the engine, you may need to have the system hooked up to a factory scanner since most of these generic codes do not cross over in my repair software....

Q: Are Code Readers and Scan Tools Different?

There are differences and similarities between code readers and scan tools. With the advent of the vehicle on board diagnostic system (OBD) there have been many different makers of scan tools and code readers. The code readers were the first...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...