Understanding Your Car’s OBD and How It Works

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Via – Gearbest

Every car owner knows how frustrating it is when their ride breaks down, especially in the middle of the road. It is even more frustrating when they don’t know the cause behind it.

Fortunately, an automated computer was developed to help tackle this problem. This computer, also known as the On-Board Diagnostic (OBD), monitors your car’s speed, engine, emissions and mileage. It also delivers a whole host of other useful data. Let’s take a deeper look into a car’s OBD and how it benefits you as the car owner.

How does an OBD function?

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Via – Auto24

Every car that was released after 1996 in the United States must have an OBD installed. For those who are not familiar with what exactly the OBD is, you can see it in the car’s dashboard just behind the steering wheel. So, how does it work?

Essentially, all new cars have sensors that measure the automobile’s oxygen, engine knock, manifold pressure, engine coolant temperature, mass air flow, and throttle position. These sensors deliver signals to the car’s Engine Control Unit (ECU).

This ECU then interprets all the information and generates code whenever a problem occurs. The ECU uses that code to send out signals to the engine lights you can see on your dash. The lights that show the car’s fuel level, temperature and other readings are part of the OBD.

How to know when your car faces a major or minor problem

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Via – YourMechanic

The signals sent from the ECU will alert the engine’s lights. As a result, if there is a minor problem, the OBD’s head unit will display a steady light. When this happens, you can still drive, even when the light stays on, and have a look at it when you arrive at your destination.

However, if the light blinks on and off, that is a sign that your car is facing a major and urgent problem. When the flashing light on the car’s OBD head unit stays on, you must fix the problem immediately and avoid driving as much as you can.

An additional diagnostics tool for your car

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Via – Carmen

 Most of the time, default OBD equipment on cars are not enough. Because of this, it is better to install an additional diagnostics tool for your car.s

Most add-on car diagnostics tools summarize a car’s fuel consumption and therefore help track the user’s gas costs. Additionally, these tools can sometimes even identify why a car broke down in the first place. They can save valuable time and energy that would otherwise be required to get your car checked out by a mechanic just to see where things went wrong.

Every car has a port under the steering wheel. This port is exclusively reserved for users who want to install an additional diagnostics tool. The next step is to input all your car’s info into the diagnostics tool application, let it scan all of the data, and port the information back to your smartphone for actionable insights.


Maintaining your car is not a fun thing to do, but with the help of new car diagnostics tools, you can maintain your automobile without too many headaches. In addition to maintaining your car, you can also plan and prevent future problems and breakdowns.

For those who are searching for the best and easiest car diagnostics tool on the market, you may want to try Carmen. The tool uses predictive technology to catch a vehicle’s issues before they happen.

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