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Best OBD2 Transmission Scanner In 2021 (Our Reviews & Comparison)

Most modern cars come equipped with a OBD2 port to diagnose transmission issues. In the past, if you didn't have a transmission scanner you had to have a technician with a scanner examine your car and diagnose the problem. 

Now, scanners are widely available and can help you identify transmission problems and maybe even provide a fix for you. In this article, we will find out what the best transmission scanner is in today's market. 

We will also go through a basic testing procedure to see how the scanners perform in real-life situations. Why trust us? We review a wide range of products everyday. Our loyal readers trust our no nonsense, unbiased recommendations and we truly appreciate them.

Comparison Chart

IMAGE PRODUCT
EDITOR'S CHOICELAUNCH CRP123 OBD2 Scanner Engine/ABS/SRS/Transmission Car Diagnostic Tool, ABS Code Reader, SRS Scan Tool, Lifetime Free Update Scan Tool 1. Launch CRP123 ENG Transmission Airbag ABS Code Reader
  • Life long free updates
  • Freeze frame viewing
  • Compatible with over 10,000 vehicles
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FIXD OBD2 Professional Bluetooth Scan Tool & Code Reader for iPhone and Android 2. FIXD
  • Get real time live data, when it eventually connects
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BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro OBDII Scan Tool for iPhone & Android 3. BlueDriver
  • Works with any modern vehicle
  • Very good customer support
  • American owned company
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Autel OBDII OBD2 Code Reader Diaglink (DIY Version of MD802) All Systems/Modules Diagnostic for ABS, SRS, Engine, Transmission, EPB, Oil Reset 4. Autel Diaglink
  • Software works very well but slow to download updates from the manufacturer website
  • You do not have to rely on Bluetooth or USB for the unit to function properly
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Autel Scanner MaxiCOM MK808, 2021 Newest OBD2 Car Diagnostic Scanner, Equipped with 25+ Maintenance Functions, All System Diagnosis, IMMO/EPB/BMS/SAS/TPMS/AutoVIN/ABS Bleeding (Original) 5. Autel MaxiCOM MK808
  • Nice large screen
  • Wide range of functions depending on your vehicle
  • Can read live data
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Our Recommendations for Transmission OBD2 Scanners

1. Launch CRP123 ENG Transmission Airbag ABS Code Reader

LAUNCH CRP123 OBD2 Scanner Engine/ABS/SRS/Transmission Car Diagnostic Tool, ABS Code Reader, SRS Scan Tool, Lifetime Free Update Scan Tool

Let's take a look at the latest Launch CRP123 navigation scan tool. We find that the scanner works perfectly for your modern car! Launch CRP123 has an intuitive user interface, with a simple menu and selectable screens. 

The main screen allows you to display all functions at the same time, for easy navigation. The user can choose from 2 views; the text view and an animated view. The scanner had no problem finding our transmission and reading everything live.

The colour of the screen and corresponding window is selected based on your current configuration. The Launch CRP123 comes with a USB connection, Bluetooth and CarFlux firmware updates and a lifetime warranty.

  • Pros/cons overview

PROS

  • Life long free updates
  • Freeze frame viewing
  • Compatible with over 10,000 vehicles

CONS

  • Updates can only be performed using Windows PC
  • Not ready to go out of the box, needs to connect to a PC first

2. FIXD

FIXD OBD2 Professional Bluetooth Scan Tool & Code Reader for iPhone and Android

FIXD from Sure Diagnostics is a budget scan tool. Using it is simple plug and play. The device can scan up to 8 internal or 4 external diagnostic components from a vehicle. 

The scanner only needs a standard OBD2 port and a mobile device with Bluetooth to work. Once you plug the scanner into your diagnostic port on your vehicle, it will scan and report any trouble codes within minutes. The scan is fairly quick and the scanner also works on a remote location. 

But the many downsides tells us to recommend you stay away from the FIXD until the manufacturer takes care of some issues. We deliberately caused a transmission error to see if the FIXD would find it, but found that the device wouldn’t detect it. We also tried an ABS fault several times with no luck. 

We also feel that there’s no use of giving us only an error code if it only very rarely gives the meaning of the code.

Our recommendation? Nope, no, uh uh and no way! 

  • Pros/cons overview

PROS

  • Get real time live data, when it eventually connects

CONS

  • Gives correct code, but not much more information than that
  • Doesn’t pick up on every error
  • Wants lots of info from the user but then asks again after reconnecting

3. BlueDriver

BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro OBDII Scan Tool for iPhone & Android

Whether you're an owner of an iPhone or an iPhone owner, the BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro OBD-II Scan Tool can come in handy. It's easy to use, works with all iPhone models as well as all the latest Android models. 

The BlueDriver OBD II Scan Tool is a complete package. You get one bluetooth OBD II tool and one bluetooth OBD II app. The app works with both IPHONE and ANDROID devices and with all operating systems. It also shows the engine's information and PCM information.

BlueDriver is available for all brands of cars. The company has a wide range of products with an impressive customer service support team. 

  • Pros/cons overview

PROS

  • Works with any modern vehicle
  • Very good customer support
  • American owned company

CONS

  • Might Take a few tries to connect to your phone
  • Feels flimsy when plugged into the port

4. Autel Diaglink

Autel OBDII OBD2 Code Reader Diaglink (DIY Version of MD802) All Systems/Modules Diagnostic for ABS, SRS, Engine, Transmission, EPB, Oil Reset

The Autel Diaglink looks a lot like an old school OBD II scanner but it packs quite a bit into its design.  The Autel is very advanced in its abilities. It comes with all the most popular features one would expect from a modern transmission scanner. 

The key selling point of this scanner is its ability to be connected to a laptop, allowing for scan diagnostics and the ability to upload diagnostic information to the web. The Autel Diaglink is currently one of the few commercially available scanners that can connect directly to a laptop for scans and diagnostics. 

We had no problems with the unit reading our transmission fluid levels, temperature, etc. 

Autel offers its own proprietary PC software, Autel Diaglink InControl, that can take a scan from your car, identify the diagnostic issue and fix it.

  • Pros/cons overview

PROS

  • Software works very well but slow to download updates from the manufacturer website
  • You do not have to rely on Bluetooth or USB for the unit to function properly

CONS

  • Doesn’t always recognize the included SD card
  • If you have more that one vehicle manufacturer you’ll have to purchase the data in order to install on the unit
  • Software works with Windows PC only

5. Autel MaxiCOM MK808

Autel Scanner MaxiCOM MK808, 2021 Newest OBD2 Car Diagnostic Scanner, Equipped with 25+ Maintenance Functions, All System Diagnosis, IMMO/EPB/BMS/SAS/TPMS/AutoVIN/ABS Bleeding (Original)

We're going to start with a quick overview of what the Autel MaxiCOM MK808 is. The MaxiCOM MK808 is basically  a computer that performs a variety of diagnostic functions for car, truck, and motorcycle drivers. 

It can detect problems with transmission shifting, body and engine control and system faults. The device uses a built-in camera to diagnose problems with the vehicle's brakes and lights. 

The device also includes a database of vehicle models with defective parts, which allows the owner to save the scan results and easily compare scans from other vehicles. This is a great diagnostic tool, but it's not perfect. It works best on cars, trucks and motorcycles built since 2003. 

  • Pros/cons overview

PROS

  • Nice large screen
  • Wide range of functions depending on your vehicle
  • Can read live data

CONS

  • Only compatible with certain vehicles
  • Not all supported vehicles can access full functions of devic. It’s sort of hit and miss

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Will a Vehicle Transmission Last?

How Long Will a Vehicle Transmission Last? Transmissions are probably the toughest part of any vehicle. They are built to last, with an average life of anywhere between 300,000 and 500,000 miles or longer.   

Transmission life depends heavily on how much you use your vehicle and what you do with it. With regular scheduled servicing the rest of the vehicle could rot away before the transmission goes out.

How Do I Get Transmission Codes With A Diagnostic Tool?

The easiest way to get your transmission or any other vehicle codes with a diagnostic tool is to make sure the tool is plugged into the OBDII port on your vehicle. 

After connecting the diagnostic tool to your mobile device via Bluetooth, just turn the power on your vehicle without starting the engine.

For that, you need to look for a scannerAfter the phone connects to the scanner, turn on the diagnostic app and look for “Transmission” Click this button and wait for the scan to finish.  

Most modern scanners have the ability to display transmission diagnostics automatically or through the use of the icon on the scanner.

The diagnostic bus communicates with your vehicle to transfer vehicle diagnostic information and allows it to communicate with the owner's manual and other connected devices. 

How Do I Update the Database on My Diagnostic Scanner?

For a scanning system to function well, the database needs to be regularly updated. This way the scanner can provide a better user experience and take advantage of new features. The most recent database version is what will be displayed on your scanner's display. 

  • Download the latest database Most modern scan tools feature an updater app that is available on your smartphone. First, download the free program on your smartphone, plug in the scanner, and connect your phone to the scanner. 

When you press the power button on the scanner, the program will start scanning. 

  • Scan Data At this stage, the program has already downloaded the latest database. So, all you need to do is scan the scan data of your car. The scanner will then notify you of the scan result.

How Do I Connect a Diagnostic Scanner to My Phone With Bluetooth?

Connecting your scanner to your phone is a great function to have. This way the phone can constantly update the scanner software and diagnostic database for the most up-to-date information. 

To connect to a scan tool on your phone you will need to follow these steps:

  • First, Download the Diagnostic Tool App. 

  • Open the app on your phone. 

  • You'll need to connect to your scan tool by scanning a QR code. 

  • Once you scan the code, the scanner will connect to your phone. 

FINAL VERDICT

We hope you enjoyed this article review about the best transmission scanner. Our top pick is going to be the Launch CRP123 ENG Transmission Airbag ABS Code Reader. This scanner really stands out for its massive range of onboard software and top notch display and quality.