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Modge

Reccomendations for OBD/Coding kit

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Hi everyone, looking for a bit of advice, I have just had an annoying 'airbag/restraint fault' warning come up again (3rd time in a year) i have coincidently had the car in the garage for other work the previous times that it has come up and they had been doing diagnostics anyway and identified the fault as caused by some sort of minor variance in the voltage of one of the airbags that wouldnt affect the operation of the system and cleared it for me at no additional charge to the work already being done.  

I dont really fancy taking it back in and paying £40 for a diagnostic and fault clear alone, I would rather invest in some kit myself so I want to get something for clearing faults and doing basic diagnostics. I dont really know where to start so Im looking for some reccomendations.

I have heard people mention the Carly and various other DIS systems and I have found quite a few just by googling and they are readily available but I would preffer to go on a solid reccomendation from someone on here who has actually used the kit and can point me in the right direction.

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BMW code reader from ebay for £25-45 quid if you want to do it cheap.

 

Carly for £54 a year plus the adaptor if you want some coding and battery registration etc 

 

Old laptop, a D-Can cable and BMW software if you want to do everything and can be arsed to install everything and learn the software that is often in German. 

 

All great options depending on what you want do, how much you want to spend or how tedious it is setting up the software on a crappy laptop running windows xp. 

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2 minutes ago, Deviant said:

BMW code reader from ebay for £25-45 quid if you want to do it cheap.

 

Carly for £54 a year plus the adaptor if you want some coding and battery registration etc 

 

Old laptop, a D-Can cable and BMW software if you want to do everything and can be arsed to install everything and learn the software that is often in German. 

 

All great options depending on what you want do, how much you want to spend or how tedious it is setting up the software on a crappy laptop running windows xp. 

My budget was ~£50, my main goal from any system is to be able to clear faults myself.  I would preffer something fairly straight forward and easy to use rather than getting properly into the weeds of code etc, but not opposed to it if thats the only way!

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5 minutes ago, Deviant said:

A cheap BMW code reader will do that.  Have a look at C110 code readers. They'll do airbags, read and clear DTCs, some live data, ABS etc. 

Sounds good to me.

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I didn't consider a £5 bluetooth adaptor and cheap android app. They are an option, but they're generic, they won't be as good the specialist BMW options. 

They can turn the money light off, some live data perhaps, talk to the major modules, but I personally wouldn't bother. 

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11 minutes ago, Deviant said:

I didn't consider a £5 bluetooth adaptor and cheap android app. They are an option, but they're generic, they won't be as good the specialist BMW options. 

They can turn the money light off, some live data perhaps, talk to the major modules, but I personally wouldn't bother. 

I have a cheap OBD2 bluetooth module in the garage somewhere that I bought to try and clear some ABS fault codes on my old Passat a while back using the Torque Pro app but it was pretty useless. Was good for getting live readings from the engine but could only read and clear engine faults, nothing else would show up (ABS and TPS faults didnt anyway), havnt used it since.  Never thought about trying it for this though, might dig it out and give it a go, certainly cant hurt to try.

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30 minutes ago, Modge said:

I have a cheap OBD2 bluetooth module in the garage somewhere that I bought to try and clear some ABS fault codes on my old Passat a while back using the Torque Pro app but it was pretty useless. Was good for getting live readings from the engine but could only read and clear engine faults, nothing else would show up (ABS and TPS faults didnt anyway), havnt used it since.  Never thought about trying it for this though, might dig it out and give it a go, certainly cant hurt to try.

 

Torque is just a mess. Carista or Blue Driver are supposed to be good. 

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Dug it out and just tried it with Torqe there, no joy couldnt find the fault.  Will try again tomorrow with thoae other apps you mentioned, failing that I just found someone selling a C110 on ebay for a decent price.

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31 minutes ago, Deviant said:

 

Torque is just a mess. Carista or Blue Driver are supposed to be good. 

Was sitting frustrated so I downloaded the free trial of Carista and success!!! Fault is cleared and the annoying in your face error is gone!!  Although did find a whole plethora of other errors that have not pinged anything on the idrive!   But @Deviant thanks for the reccomendation, think its the first thing I have ever tried to do to the E60 that has gone smoothly!!

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I've got ISTA-D which is the successor to DIS. It is quite a big software suite. These are basically what the mechanics have at a BMW dealer. I've not got my head around ISTA yet as only used it once or twice. 

INPA is a small and quick way to read fault codes. I've not been able to get it to give me error code descriptions in English for my N47 engine but the code itself and a bit of googling gets the job done. 

I also have a cheap bluetooth ebay dongle that I use with Torque but it's worse than useless for error codes and sometimes misleading. INPA is the way to go for reliable error code reading. Maybe I'll look into carista. I don't like the Carly subscription model. 

Keliuss

Edited by keliuss

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I went for the laptop option about 3 years back. The support I got from Cable Shack was good, but the applications do take time to get your head around, and if you don't use it regularly it's not easy to remember the drill-down routes to where you want to be. Balancing the laptop on your knee, and the presence of cables is a slight embuggerance. But plenty of people use it and get on fine. When I lost access to the laptop I went down the Carly route. Not the cheapest option, but it's very very convenient to use, with an easy user interface. You pays yer money and you takes yer choice!   :D

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2 hours ago, Modge said:

Was sitting frustrated so I downloaded the free trial of Carista and success!!! Fault is cleared and the annoying in your face error is gone!!  Although did find a whole plethora of other errors that have not pinged anything on the idrive!   But @Deviant thanks for the reccomendation, think its the first thing I have ever tried to do to the E60 that has gone smoothly!!

 

 

Great stuff... and for free too B) 

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