Apr 16, 2015
Another day, another opportunity to allow connected mobility make life easier. We are all for that.
Enter the BlueDriver OBDII Scan Tool, a piece from Lemur that allows folks to really drill down into auto management.
It is irregularly shaped, with a cuboid base at the core, but retains a relatively small profile. On the one end, one finds the plug-in portion with the telltale pins; on the opposite side is an LED light. The review piece is black with white lettering, and looks and feels like a a well-fused item.
The title says is all: this puck looks to give its user the power of OBDII in a handy little tool; to be very accurate, it does so with the help of a companion app that resides on one’s Android device. The app is a comprehensive sidekick; the UI is bathed in an almost purplish hue that backs the clear-cut icons that hint at the the true functionality of app-puck combo.
This two-part solution is fairly intuitive to use; the puck gets plugged into the ODB port in the car, paired to the device/app, and the accumulated data is accessed via the app. When the app is opened, it requests to turn on Bluetooth if that radio is off, and then looks to pair with the plugged in puck. When it gets going, there is quite a lot of stuff that can be accessed: accident reports, code reader, smog check and plenty more, including flashlight functionality. Additionally, one can get to the user manual from the app, order extra pieces, update sensor firmware and connect with the manufacturer via email, phone or social networks.
In any case, in action, this piece just works. It pulls in the information seamlessly and presents it equally so, with “pro tip” pop-ups that help with deciphering data. I tried several of the tools, and was pleased with each; I didn’t have a control to confirm readings, or a chance to use the “clear codes” functionality at all, though.
As a permanent tool (it can be left installed), it is a nice accessory to have. It is transferable, easy to use and the mobile component is a big plus. At $99.95 on Amazon, it probably isn’t for the overly casual, but even taht can be argued. If anything, nothing beats having a clue what is going on with one’s car — before going to the mechanic.