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Are there any portable engine diagnostic devices, such as CarMD that are legitimate, work and are affordable, and if so, which ones do you recommend? Thank you!

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  • Cars & Trucks Master
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With CarMD, you are not paying for the device, you are paying for the expertise of technicians who see what your device sees and provide you an explanation and recommended course of action to repair any problems, along with estimates on what a repair should cost.
You can buy code readers and scanners starting at under $50, but if you don't understand the meaning of diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) or what you should be seeing with a scanner, it doesn't make too much difference whether you spend $50 or $1000.
I don't have CarMD, and know nothing more about them than what I see in their adverstisements, but it sounds good.
You could go to most auto parts stores, have them check your car for codes, and they will probably recommend you buying something that will 'fix it'. Or, you could have them give you the code(s) - get a print out or write them down. Then research yourself, or ask a knowledgeable friend for help.

Posted on May 20, 2017

Testimonial: "A workable engine OBD diagnostic device was recently advertised on a social media site which connects to an android phone, claims to instantly reads out in plain English what is taking place with you car, identifying any trouble areas needing attention. I forgot to take not of the name of the device."

  • Brian Takashima
    Brian Takashima May 20, 2017

    I think the whole idea is to alert you of challenges with your engine or drive train before you go to a mechanic to safeguard against dishonest mechanics.

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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Hi Michelle,


This is Ivy with CarMD.com Corp. We saw your question and passed it on to our ASE Certified Technical Support team for review. We noticed that you have not had a chance to run a CarMD diagnostic report for your vehicle to get detailed solutions. At this moment, we highly suggest that you do not drive your vehicle. If you continue to drive your vehicle in its current condition, you could cause more damage to your vehicle. Not to worry though, our lead technician will contact you shortly and help you with any questions you may have for your vehicle and CarMD report.


Please feel free to contact us at 1-888-692-2763 (option 4) if you have any further questions or require additional information. Our ASE certified automotive technicians would be more than happy to help you!


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