So, you’ve just picked up a wireless OBD2 scanner and are wondering which diagnostic app to install on your iPhone. Well, you’re in luck because in this post you will find the best OBD2 apps review.
Before we get into the business end of the review, you may want to know that using an OBD2 adapter is a brilliant idea. Also known as dongles or wireless scanners, these small devices pair with your smartphone via Bluetooth. By doing so they turn your phone into a diagnostic tool.
But you first need to install a professional automotive diagnostic software. Combining the best obd2 app for iOS with your iPhone will unlock the full potential of both your phone (as a diagnostic tool) and the OBD2 dongle.
#1. OBD Fusion
Developed by a company called OCTech, OBD Fusion can easily rank as the ultimate car diagnostic app for iPhone. Its three best features are: engine scanning, fuel efficiency monitoring and engine trouble monitoring.
The engine scan function pulls trouble codes from the engine control unit (ECU). You can use the codes to tell what’s faulty in your car’s ECU. Knowing that will make it possible to fix the problem. In turn, you will be able to reset the Check Engine Light (CEL) (or Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL)) and turn it off.
The fuel efficiency monitor allows you to view the MPG rating of your car. You can also see its actual fuel consumption. With that information you will be best placed to optimize your engine and make it more fuel efficient.
Finally, OBD Fusion displays real-time gauges and graphs that make it possible to monitor engine performance. You can track its air flow, mass air intake, RPM, absolute pressure, engine temp and so much more.
In addition to those three, this professional automotive diagnostic software displays freeze frame data, runs emission tests, supports GPS tracking, and exports diagnostic data (to email).
Pros of OBD Fusion
• Can generate over 150 graphs
• Supports comprehensive engine diagnostics
• Has a GPS for tracking your vehicle
• Connects via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi
• Displays gauges for monitoring vehicle performance and fuel efficiency
• Has a built-in database of DTC definitions
• Customizable dashboard allows you to choose the gauges you want to see
• Multi-gauge display can be a bit confusing
• Not a free diagnostic app
Although OBD Fusion is not free, its price is quite low (actually negligible). And it works with all the main OBD2 adapters, including Carista, BAFX, Bluedriver, ScanTool and Vgate models. Plus you can use it with Android devices.
DashCommand is a cross-platform diagnostic app. Besides working on iPhones, it’s also debatably the best obd2 app for Android. More importantly, this professional automotive diagnostic software turns your phone into a powerful diagnostic device.
Like OBD Fusion above, DashCommand has three primary functions. First off, it’s a code reader. You can use it to pull engine codes and clear them. That makes it ideal for turning the CEL off.
Secondly, this app monitors both engine performance and fuel economy. Engine gauges display engine speed, torque, acceleration, braking, corrected vehicle speed and boost/vacuum.
On the other hand, fuel economy gauges show the most important readings for MPG. They include distance/time to empty, fuel flow rate, remaining fuel in tank, fuel level (in percentage) and instant/average fuel economy.
The third function is emission tests. Specifically, this app lets you run I/M readiness tests to check whether your car meets state and federal emission standards.
But perhaps the one thing that makes DashCommand arguably the best obd2 app for iOS is trip advisor. It shows all the information you need to plan and go on a trip successfully. You can see the distance travelled, drive time, fuel cost, maximum speed and number of stops just to name a few.
Pros of DashCommand
• Has impressive visual display of gauges and codes
• Complete diagnostic tool for scanning ECU
• Intuitive interface that’s easy to navigate
• Displays multiple performance indicators
• Cross-platform app that works on iPhones as well as Android devices
• Connects via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth
• Newbies might find it hard to understand the gauges
• Not free
While most OBD2 apps read engine DTCs and provide engine and fuel gauges, DashCommand goes a step further with its trip advisor. That’s what makes it special.
#3. OBD Auto Doctor
When it comes to main functions, OBD Auto Doctor is not so different from OBD Fusion and DashCommand. It can scan the ECU, pull codes and reset the CEL. Additionally, as a professional automotive diagnostic software, it monitors both engine performance and fuel economy as well as display readiness monitors.
So what sets OBD Auto Doctor apart from the rest? For starters it can display vehicle information. Not just ECU information but VIN as well. Plus it works on both gasoline and diesel vehicles.
You need to use the paid version of OBD Auto Doctor in order to unlock its full potential. Its free version only offers limited functions and is suitable for beginners.
Pros of OBD Auto Doctor
• Can send diagnostic data and reports via email
• Compatible with gasoline and diesel vehicles
• Has a built-in database with DTC descriptions
• Connects via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth
• Offers helpful information to show fuel economy and engine performance
• Free version offers little to work with
OBD Auto Doctor works with all adapters that support Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connectivity. That’s basically all OBD2 adapters.
So there you have it, our take on the best OBD2 apps review. If you have an iPhone and an OBD2 adapter pick one of the three apps above and it will turn your phone into a powerful diagnostic tool.