[updated May 2021] See our thoughts on today’s code readers. We like the Autophix ES610, Actron models, Innova 6030P, and these Bluetooth devices that send the data to your phone [find an app like Torque]. Buy with these links and it helps this site.
Your Guide to Buying a Code Reader
First, get what you need. This is a tool that works on literally hundreds of millions of cars across the world. Like 99% of tools, buying quality means it’ll work for you for years, even paying for itself. That doesn’t mean buying the most expensive code reader, but means buying the best one for your needs.
- Actron or Autel? Or Innova?
- Should I spend just $30 or will spending $100 on an OBDII scanner make sense down the road?
- Will it reset codes? SRS codes even?
There are dozens — maybe hundreds — of different OBDII scanners for sale out there. Make sure you get the right one for you. See what MVS Forum members say, and if you can’t find your answer, join the forum (free, quick) and ask your own question about reading codes on your Volvo.
MVS Volvo Forum member shiloh51933:
I been looking on E-bay at this one that I attached, it’s not as good as the one I use to have at work but it looks okay. I’ve been looking at this model for a while cause it was more in my price range but now that I’m bringing in more flow I think I could spend more on something better. Any suggestions for something up to maybe a 100.00 or less if it’s good, this OBDII is mostly for self but sometimes I do side jobs for people. Appreciate any opinions, thanks.
MVS Volvo Forum Contributor div4scpro:
1 expedited Amazon Prime order and $220 later an Autel MaxiDiag Elite 802 made my day. Instead of paying $198 minimum to the dealership and only a receipt to show for it, I have my SRS codes reset and a new inspection sticker on my car.
My lessons learned:
- I’m not knocking Vida-Dice at all, but for someone like me the technology of a scan tool, even a complex one, is easier to manage than creating a virtual machine on you computer to run Vida-Dice or other software modifications.
- I’m not saying that this Autel model or even Autel period is the only choice for someone making a scanner choice, even though it saved my bacon this time. Autel advertises a number of models that are less expensive than this model, but I wasn’t sure if they covered my year, make and model. Do your homework, even call tech support at the manufacturer.