When it comes to cars, I’ve had many of them. Through the years, owning cars has been a pleasure, and a curse.
Before 1996, the cost of repairs for cars used to be thousands of dollars. Dropping a couple of grand on a transmission repair was nothing new. But it was tiring.
However, after 1996, it’s been easier because it’s been a lot better overall. Technology has come through with something grand, and have been able to work with tools that are easier to work with than ever.
For instance, you can purchase an OBD code reader. This is a solution that you can easily attach to modern cars, and find out exactly what is wrong with a vehicle.
In fact, over the course of a couple of years, I was able to save over $2,000 in repairs. It all started with a simple purchase, and a few years of repairs that I was able to do on my own.
Starting With The Basic Readers
Before getting a high end reader, I started with something very basic. I found a cheap, used option on an auction website, and then checked my Nissan for some simple codes.
Attaching it was easy, and getting codes was not the problem, but deciphering the codes was a bit difficult to manage. I didn’t know what the codes were at first, but after looking online for a while, I was able to figure them out.
I was able to see that some codes meant the area of the problem, and then looking up some manuals, was able to apply fixes quickly.
The basic readers that I found were under $50, and were easy to use, and work with. I also found options as low as $20, but I went with something in the middle of the road.
It’s a simple solution that was able to give me information from day one.
Using The Reader To Fix Problems
The first major problem that I fixed was simple enough, my battery was starting to lose power. I didn’t really know it was the battery until I started to use OBD code readers.
Getting a new battery wasn’t hard, and installing it was simple as well. Once I did that, I was able to gain the upper hand, and fix my starting issue. That alone didn’t cost a lot, but if I would’ve had a break down while driving to work or home, the cost of a tow truck and the diagnostics of a garage would be difficult to manage overall.
Using the reader to fix problems saved me the big headache of being stuck on the side of the road, and dealing with towing, and more. It is a lifesaver in many ways.
Not only was I able to fix the problem with the battery, I was able to upgrade a few elements in the engine. I actually get more power from the engine than the stock solution.
I learned about car tuning and how you could get a scan of what is going on when you update parts.
I upgraded a few things, and now get faster fuel injection, better gas mileage, and a faster top speed. This was simple to work with, and it’s fascinating to see how tuning was made simple with these readers and scanners.
It’s a lot less than having to spend money on a mechanic to upgrade these things for me.
Avoiding Starter Issue With OBD Code Readers
One of the biggest savings that I was able to pull was in regards to vehicle misfires. I heard a misfire and had starter issues.
Trying to figure out how to work this out was a bit difficult to manage. However, was able to work things out with the use of a good reader.
The reader allowed me to figure out that I needed new spark plugs and wires. I changed both those elements, and the misfire stopped. It was quite fascinating to see how a simple fix like changed how my vehicle worked.
But the thing is, a mechanic would’ve recommended that I was able to spend a great deal on an engine replacement or fix.
It takes a bit of time to work things out, but the scanner was able to tell me the issue, and after some investigation, I was able to work through the changes, and save thousands.
Getting A Reader For Your Vehicle
If you’re not sure about what readers are worth your time, or perhaps you aren’t sure what to purchase, you will want to look for OBD options that are popular today.
Start your quest by looking online for OBD code reader, and see what the results are. Once you do that, you can start to narrow down your search so that you are able to purchase something overall.
The basic options, as I mentioned above can be well under $50.
The higher end models can be thousands of dollars, however, so you’ll have to manage your expectations as far as costs are concerned.
Getting a reader is a simple thing, you can purchase these online or visit a car parts store.
Get A Manual Too
The next thing that you should do in order to save money like I did, is to get a manual. You’ll need a good owner’s manual for the make and model of your car.
If your car was made from 1996 and forward, you’ll find that there are a lot of manuals out there. Purchase one that is official or a third-party solution, then use the codes that you pull from your OBD options, to fix things outright.
If you do not get a manual, the codes are not going to make sense, and applying a fix is going to be difficult overall. Getting a manual is very important, so don’t buy the device without this too.
Of course, you may run into serious problems and need a mechanic.