It’s annoying to see Check Engine Light, aka Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), on your car instrument cluster.
Whenever any sensor detects any trouble with vehicle parts, your ECU (Engine Control Unit) stores an OBD2 code.
If your Check Engine Light or MIL is triggered, it indicates some fault recorded by the ECU (Engine Control Unit).
You can use an OBD2 scanner to find and clear trouble codes. If you’re new to car scanners, this guide on clearing codes with an obd2 scanner will be very helpful.
If you don’t have an OBD2 scanner, you can still clear the trouble code without a scanner, but it’s temporary.
How Does an OBD2 Scanner Work?
Before moving ahead, let’s understand how a scan tool works to read and clear OBD2 codes.
Let’s understand in very simple language!
An OBD2 scanner is a simple device with different shapes, sizes, and features.
It has a standardized connector that goes into the vehicle’s DLC port (also called the OBD2 port) and connects with your vehicle’s ECU.
The OBD2 device has pre-installed software that sends commands to your vehicle ECU.
The vehicle ECU sends a DTC (Diagnostic Trouble Code) in response. The DTC indicates the responsible sensor triggering the Check Engine Light.
Professional mechanics understand the meaning of these trouble codes and perform the required repair to solve the issue.
After taking the required action, they clear the codes with an OBD2 scanner to turn off the Check Engine Light.
How To Clear Codes With OBD2 Scanner?
There are many Bluetooth-enabled scan tools available that read and clear trouble codes from your car ECU.
If you love DIY, then compact scanners are great for clearing OBD2 codes. You can order a cheap obd2 scanner from Amazon.
FIXD and Bluedriver are two dominant products in the market. Both support all car makes and models which are sold after 1996 in the USA.
This guide will see how to clean trouble codes with a Bluetooth OBD2 scanner.
Follow these steps to clear codes with obd2 scanners:
- Turn ON the ignition of your vehicle but don’t start the engine.
- Locate the OBD2 port and plug in the scanner.
- Wait for a few seconds until it establishes a connection with ECU. (Read this guide to fix the obd2 communication failure issue)
- Go to your OBD2 scanner menu and select Scan.
- Wait until your scanner retrieves trouble codes from the ECU.
- Now go to the main menu and select Clear codes.
- Select again to confirm the action.
That’s it! The scanner will automatically clear all the trouble codes stored in the ECU and turn off the Check Engine Light.
These are the general steps to clear DTC from the vehicle’s ECU. But, the process varies from scanner to scanner.
If you have a Bluetooth OBD2 scanner, follow these steps to clear OBD2 codes!
1. How To Clear Codes with FIXD OBD2 Scanner
FIXD is a cheap and feature-rich Bluetooth car scanner that detects over 7000+ potential issues of a vehicle.
It’s a compact adapter that plugs into the OBD2 port and connects with any smartphone and tablet via Bluetooth.
Follow these steps to clear OBD2 codes with the FIXD scanner:
- Go to Google App Store or Apple App Store and download the FIXD scanner app on your phone or tablet.
- Sign up for a free account and follow the on-screen steps to finish the installation.
- Insert the key into the ignition switch and rotate clockwise to turn ON the ignition but don’t start the engine. If you have a keyless car, press the Engine Start button once.
- Locate the OBD2 port and plug in the FIXD adapter carefully.
- Go to your phone’s Bluetooth device list and connect with the FIXD scanner.
- Once the FIXD scanner is connected to your phone/tablet, launch the FIXD app.
- Tap on the Scan button to read all trouble codes.
- Wait for a few seconds until it retrieves all trouble codes.
- Tap on the DTC code and read more information, then tap on the Clear Engine Light button at the bottom of your phone screen.
That’s it! FIXD will clear the trouble code and reset your engine control unit. You can read a detailed guide on how to use the FIXD scanner here.
2. How To Clear Codes with Bluedriver OBD2 Scanner
If you’re using the BlueDriver scanner, then follow these steps to clear diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs):
- Download BlueDriver App from Google Play Store or Amazon App Store.
- Locate the DLC port (OBD2 port) of your vehicle (generally located on the driver’s side)
- Turn ON the ignition by rotating the key or press the start button once if your car is keyless.
- Insert the BluedDriver scan tool into the OBD2 port carefully.
- Pair your smartphone with a BlueDriver scanner via Bluetooth.
- Once it’s connected, tap on the “Read Codes” option.
- Wait for a few seconds until it retrieves the pending trouble code.
- Tap on “Clear Codes” to delete all trouble codes and turn off the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL).
I have already published a detailed guide on how to use the BlueDriver scanner to diagnose trouble codes.
The wireless OBD2 scanners are quite handy and useful tools for car owners. It helps in reading engine trouble codes and many other vehicle diagnosis features.
If some ECU sensors consistently trigger MIL or Check Engine Light, then you can use an obd2 scanner to clear the codes after fixing the issue.