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  1.  
    #11
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    *US specific - Brits can ignore this bit*

    Nope, although if they are from 1996 onwards, then they should have OBD2.
    For a broad band diagnostic gadget, you can get an ELM 327 based device, they come as leads, bluetooth or wifi, and handheld, and you can even link them to 'phone apps to read codes and get live data, sometimes even dyno run style programs.

    These won't be anywhere near as in-depth as the BMW stuff, it'll just cover engine and transmission problems, but they will work on every car (it was a legal thing to have easily accessible cheap diagnostics)
    There are a few different protocols, GM group and Ford, Jap cars, European cars etc, but these days, all leads should cover every protocol.

    elm 327 | eBay

    Anything there should cover all post 96 cars to a basic usable level.


    For a deeper level (into Aircon, ABS brakes etc) you'll need something more specific to the model.
    There's a few about on ebay, various makes and models, often possible clones of the dealer diagnostic kit, and they seem to be starting from around $75-150, up to $700-800 for repair shop spec stuff.

    I'd double check on a GMC / Toyota forum for what is about if you want to get full diagnostic coverage, otherwise, just grab an ELM327 for basic coverage on all 96 on cars.
     
     

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    #12
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    That opening post is brilliant and has opened my eyes to the world of diagnostics and how I need to look at the codes etc more detail. I've come from E30's so all diagnostics was done the old fashioned way of testing components in a logical order to determine the faulty one, I saw myself almost get sucked into the 'replace sensor' statement in the opening post in the excitment of being able to plug in a laptop and find the fault. I will now just use the codes as an idea as to where to look/test first and revert to more traditional ways

    Many thanks 'TheEnd' you may well have saved me money in the long run

    Charlie
     
     

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    FAL (10-06-2012),TheEnd (09-06-2012)

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    #13
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    Excellent post, thank you.
    To Do List
    Shelf Speakers Done Door Speakers Done
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    #14
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    Great read, but little lost into what reader i need for my m44 engine bmw, will a obd2 code reader work. Car has a obd2 point but was there something in that post saying they wont work on models before 2001. I just come in from work , so might off read it wrong.
     
     

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    #15
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    Yep, no OBD2 readers work on any UK e36s, INPA would be the handiest lead to use.
     
     

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    #16
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    No obd2 readers work, whats the best to use then. Many thanks
     
     

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    Hi everyone.
    I am new to the forum. I have been facing some probs with my airbag light. It stays on. I have purchased ELM327 v1.5 bluetooth adapter from ebay and also purchased and downloade Torque software on my android phone. It doesnt show the airbag or my parking sensor fault when i run the scan and therefore when i clear the codes it doesnt go away.
    Can anyone please help me how to get the airbag light removed using the bluetooth adapter?
    Thanks
     
     

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    #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noman Aziz View Post
    Can anyone please help me how to get the airbag light removed using the bluetooth adapter?
    i dont think you can with that
    you need this
    BMW Diagnostic Cable - Black Edition « BM Technic | BMW Diagnostic Cable | BMW Diagnostic Software
     
     

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  13. What cable and software? 
    #19
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    Hi,

    What cable and software do i need for my 2007 e93 bmw for basic code reading/diagnostics on a laptop?
    My friend has told me about vagcom on his vw and he can switch various functions on off that your car can do but wasn't necessarily turned on at the factory. Is there something similar available for BMW?
    One of the main reasons i ask is you cannot put the roof up by the key and i was wondering wether this was something that can be simple switched on?

    Thanks

    Dan
     
     

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    #20
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    It's not a simple switch, but it can be done with an INPA lead.
    You'll probably need to get the DCAN / dual CAN lead and not the cheaper type.
     
     

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