New Code Reader

As I mentioned in the initial van post, there is a check engine light that needs to be figured out.

And to help me do that, I picked up a Mercedes specific MBII Code Scanner that can read both standard OBDII engine codes as well as Mercedes specific codes.

But I thought your van was a Dodge??

Well, it is a Dodge as far as the logos are concerned, but the engine and pretty much most of the rest of it are Mercedes parts. These vans were sold under the Dodge and Freightliner names through partnerships as rebranded Mercedes vans.

Anyway, this code reader is pretty cool.

Upon plugging it in, it will boot up/initialize and bring you to the home screen where you can select Diagnose by clicking the Ok button.

It will try to connect to the car and run a series of connection tests. Most of my failed and it wasn’t an issue but it will be unusable if the ignition is not turned on. If this is the case, it will display an error message.

Simply make sure the key is turned to the on position and click Ok.

Next, it will provide you a summary screen. Here is will tell you how many DTC’s (Diagnostic Trouble Codes) were found as well as some other information such as how many sensors can be read via the data stream. Also weirdly, it suggests that the ignition type is “Spark” but since this is a diesel that’s wrong… maybe that’s just a setting I can change.

Either way, clicking Ok will let you move to the “Diagnostic Menu” where you can select “Read Codes”.

In my case – and the reason I got this in the first place – I had a code in the system. The nice thing about this reader is that not only will it find the code for you but it also will display a small description of what that particular code means.

Furthermore, if you select the book shaped icon button, it will open up a detailed explanation of the the problem that is causing the code.

Going back to the “Diagnostic Menu” and selecting “Data Stream”…

… it will then ask if you’d like to view the items themselves as a list, just selected items, or graphical representations of the sensor data.

I selected “View Graphic Items” and it brought up a long menu of choices of different sensors that can be monitored in real time as the engine is running.

Since I’m having a problem with the fuel rail pressure, I selected that item by pressing Ok and then weirdly pressing Esc to confirm the selections.

Finally, that let me watch a real time display of the sensor data for the fuel rail pressure while the engine was running. This has the potential to allow me to visualize potentially valuable information to the diagnosis process.

All in all, I think this is a great code reader and will be a worthwhile tool to have onboard in the event of spontaneous check engine lights while on the road.

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