Not all trouble codes are included under the OBD2 diagnostics. For non-OBDII systems like the anti-lock brakes (ABS) and airbags (SRS), an ABS/SRS OBD2 scanner is what you’ll want to get the job done.
There’s more to these scan tools than reading and clearing trouble codes. Many can also perform repair functions like bleeding your brakes, while advanced models even allow you to diagnose other systems of the vehicle.
Choosing the right ABS/SRS reader comes down to finding a device that’s compatible with your vehicle and offers the functions you need. The good news is, it doesn’t need to cost a fortune and can save you money down the line by letting you make your own repairs at home.
Ready to find the perfect scan tool for your car or pickup? Let’s take a look at the best options currently on the market.
Table of Contents
Best OBD2 Scanners with ABS SRS
All the scan tools in this list support all gas/diesel sedans, SUVs, and light trucks. Some of them also support minivans.
*Price updated on May 8th, 2021. It is sometimes different from the price you find in reality.
|BlueDriver||9.5/10||$99.95||Best Bluetooth OBD2 scanner with ABS SRS|
|Foxwell NT630 Plus||9.8/10||$138.98||Best OBD2 scan tool with full ABS services and bleeding|
|Launch CRP123X||9.0/10||$168.88||Best ABS airbag transmission code reader with touch screen|
|Launch CRP129i||9.8/10||$238.88||Best ABS/ Airbag/ transmission diagnostic tool with 15 reset services|
|Launch CRP123i||8.5/10||$188.88||Best OBD2 ABS airbag scan tool with battery test|
|Launch CRP123||9.5/10||$129||Most Reliable OBD2 scanner with ABS/ SRS/ Transmission|
|Autel Diaglink||9.0/10||$96||Best affordable ABS SRS scan tool with full system diagnosis and oil reset|
How to choose the best ABS/airbag OBD2 scanner?
There are many companies out there making diagnostic equipment, but you don’t just want to go with the first one you find. Buying from a well-known brand means you can trust their scanners to be both durable and accurate. Here are our top 3 choices for both professionals and home enthusiasts.
Founded in 1992, this Chinese company has decades of experience providing top-notch customer service and reliable automotive repair equipment. Their tools are used in more than 60 countries worldwide and are designed for both wide compatibility and consumer value.
Launch tools are an excellent choice for home mechanics because they have a reputation for providing excellent support. Their tools are also easy to use and come in a wide range of features and price points, from basic code readers to full professional scanners.
Recommendation: Launch CRP123
Foxwell’s focus as a company is on innovation and excellence. Their diagnostic tools are preferred by many professional mechanics because of their top-notch engineering. Since they invest about 20% of their profits into research and development, you know you’re getting the most up-to-date technology.
Foxwell designs their tools with the customer experience in mind, and that’s reflected in the products. On the whole, they’re well-built and intuitive to navigate, providing a fast and accurate diagnosis for a range of vehicles and systems.
Recommendation: Foxwell NT630 Plus
Below $100: many OBD2 scanners support ABS and SRS, which means you can read and clear codes related to the systems. Bluedriver is a good example of this price range when you’re looking to have a Bluetooth OBD2 scan tool for iPhone iPad or Android. If you prefer a wired scan tool, take the Autel Diaglink.
$100-$250: scan tools priced in that range will usually have full OBD2 functionality along with the ability to read ABS, airbag, and transmission codes. You may also get a few advanced functions, including ABS bleeding like the Foxwell NT630 Plus or special reset services like the Launch CRP129i.
Recommendation: Foxwell NT630 Plus
An ABS and airbag code reader is a piece of automotive diagnostic equipment that allows you to read data from the engine computer. Basic code readers are designed to work with the OBD2 (onboard diagnostic) system, which provides trouble codes and sensor readings from the engine but isn’t compatible with other vehicle systems. That’s where an ABS/SRS code reader comes in. These devices are designed to work with the anti-lock brake system (ABS) and airbag system (SRS) in the same way basic code readers communicate with the engine.
The most obvious advantage of this is the ability to turn off the associate warning lights for those systems without going to a garage. Most of these SRS and ABS scanners can do a lot more than that, though. Let’s take a look at the key features you can expect from these devices.
ABS and SRS scan tools’ functionality varies widely, from basic models that only read and clear trouble codes to professional SRS/ABS diagnostic tools with full programming and coding capabilities.
Generally speaking, beginning home mechanics and DIY-ers will only need a code reader that provides the basic features listed below. The Advanced Features will primarily be of use to professionals and experienced home mechanics.
Basic Key Features
Read and erase ABS/SRS trouble codes. Trouble codes are the warnings generated by these systems when something is amiss. Once triggered, they’ll activate the associated dash warning light to let you know there’s a problem. Reading the code enables you to identify the issue. You can then clear it once it’s fixed to turn off the light.
Read and erase engine DTCs. Most ABS/SRS scanners support at least some of the 10 OBD2 Modes. At the least, you can expect them to read and clear diagnostic trouble codes that trigger your check engine light.
Read live data. Live data reading enables you to see sensor readings, engine temperature, and other valuable information in real-time. Most SRS/ABS readers can show you information from the brakes, airbags, or engine, which can be a great help in identifying the cause of pesky trouble codes.
EVAP system tests. The main focus of the OBD2 system is vehicle emissions. Many of the modes are designed with this in mind, allowing you to test the oxygen (O2) sensors or other emission system areas. This lets you be prepared for the emission and smog checks that are often part of state vehicle inspections.
I/M readiness. This mode of OBD2 evaluates your system’s preparedness for emissions tests and is another helpful feature for preparing for smog and emission checks.
Read VIN data. Every car that’s made has a unique VIN code that gives you important information like the vehicle’s manufacturer and model, as well as where and in what year it was made. You can also retrieve information on the car’s features and specifications with this function, which can help replace parts or make other at-home repairs.
Advanced Features Of ABS Scan Tools
ABS Manual Control Tests. Also called active testing or bi-directional control, this feature enables you to activate mechanical and electronic components in your vehicle manually. Testing individual sensors, valves, and solenoids allows you to locate and repair malfunctions more quickly.
ABS Motor Test. The motor drives the pumping action that helps you stop without skidding in icy weather. An ABS motor test allows you to manually control the pump motor and ensure it’s working the way it should.
ABS Version Test. Similar to VIN data, this tells you useful information about the ABS, including the version number, software ID, and sequence value. You’ll need this information if you plan to repair or replace parts of the system.
Actuator Tests. A form of manual control, this lets you test the AYC valves, inlet valves, outlet valves, TRACS valves, and pump motors of the ABS.
ABS Bleeding. Air bubbles can get into the hydraulic brake lines during repairs or servicing, impeding their function. Bleeding the brakes removes this air to keep things running smoothly. ABS tools often include an automatic brake bleeding program that removes the air for you, saving you the hassle of bleeding out the air manually.
If you’re looking to buy an OBD2 scan tool with full ABS services and active tests, take Foxwell NT630 Plus.
Advanced Features Of SRS Scan Tools
Check the airbag system. Diagnostic functions on SRS scanners go deeper than just reading trouble codes. You can check every aspect of your airbag system with these tools, identifying issues you’d otherwise need a mechanic to correct.
Reset SRS Control Module. The SRS system needs resetting after you install a replacement airbag. This function allows you to do so in your home garage.
Ensure the airbag system is functioning normally. Unlike other systems, you won’t always be able to tell if the airbags are working correctly during day-to-day driving. An SRS scan tool has systems that ensure all safety systems are functional when you need them.
Updates don’t just improve the software’s performance, they’re also necessary to get the most up to date repair information. Some tools offer free updates for life, while others will require a paid subscription.
If the ABS or airbag scanner has Wi-Fi or Bluetooth you can update it straight through the device. Otherwise, you’ll need to connect it to a computer first. Many tools are only compatible with PCs for updates, so keep that in mind if you’re a Mac user.
The more advanced the processor in the scan tool, the faster it can deliver results. This doesn’t just save time, either. Scan tools that can read information more quickly are able to give more accurate real-time sensor data without lags or gaps.
Along with the processing speed, consider the speed of navigating the tool. Functions like health reports and one-touch diagnostic checks can take a lot of the tedious work out of diagnostics.
A strong support system is especially necessary when something goes wrong with your tool. Many scan tool companies also have active online communities or networks of certified mechanics who can provide a more advanced form of support, giving you experienced-backed repair suggestions you can’t get from any tool.
Best OBD2 Scan Tools With ABS SRS Review
BlueDriver: Best Bluetooth OBD2 scanner with ABS SRS
The BlueDriver Bluetooth OBDII Scanner is our top choice for everyday drivers and beginning home mechanics who want to diagnose the ABS and SRS systems. Using the BlueDriver app lets you run vehicle diagnostics straight from your phone, even while you’re driving. You’ll also enjoy free, automatic updates and easy saving and exporting of data.
BlueDriver’s compatibility for ABS and SRS diagnosis is narrower than you’ll find with other brands. These functions are part of its Enhanced Codes and are available for eight manufacturers. This list includes common brands like Ford, Toyota, and Volkswagen, but you’ll want to make sure your car’s on the list before buying it.
With BlueDriver, you can view live data from PIDs, read and clear codes, and view suggested fixes. That said, it doesn’t include any repair functions or advanced diagnostic options like bi-directional control. This is the main reason we don’t recommend it for professionals. For home users, though, the streamlined functions make it an easier tool to use and navigate.
BlueDriver is an easy to use ABS and SRS scanner for everyday drivers and beginning home mechanics, though its compatibility and functions are more limited than other options.Check Price at Amazon
Foxwell NT630 Plus: Best OBD2 scan tool with full ABS services and bleeding
The Foxwell NT630 Plus is an excellent bidirectional scan tool for both diagnosing and repairing the airbag and anti-lock brake systems. It supports bi-directional testing of individual system components and can perform repair functions like ABS bleed in addition to reading and clearing ABS/SRS trouble codes.
You can diagnose engine issues with the Foxwell NT630 Plus, as well. This scan tool supports all ten modes of OBD2 for most cars, SUVs, and pickup trucks on the road, and you’ll get the same wide compatibility for its ABS/SRS functions.
The only notable omission on the Foxwell NT630 Plus is that it can’t diagnose the transmission, so it’s less comprehensive than other options on the list. That said, its robust functionality for other systems makes up for this lack. With its portable and lightweight design, it’s an ideal travel scan tool for professional mechanics.
The Foxwell NT630 Plus supports professional features like bi-directional testing for ABS and SRS components in a compact housing that’s perfect for repairs on the road.Check Price at Amazon
Launch CRP123X: Best ABS airbag transmission code reader with touch screen
An upgraded version of the Launch CRP123 above, the CRP123X also has both 4-system diagnosis and full OBD2 functionality. An easy diagnostic report function lets you evaluate your vehicle’s health at a glance, and you can save and print all live data and error codes.
The main improvement made with the Launch CRP123X isn’t its functionality but its convenience. Since it has onboard Wi-Fi, you can update it with one click without connecting it to a computer. It also gives you access to the “Feedback” function, which provides customized repair suggestions from Launch’s certified professionals.
The high-resolution 5” touchscreen interface on the Launch CRP123X lets you view readings more quickly and with more detail than smaller scan tools. If you’re looking for the most in-depth and accurate information, this is the best tool for you.
Built-in Wi-Fi capability makes the Launch CRP123X a convenient way for both professionals and home mechanics to diagnose the ABS and SRS systems quickly.Check Price at Amazon
Launch CRP129i: Best ABS/ Airbag/ transmission diagnostic tool with 15 reset services
Here’s another great option from Launch for intermediate and advanced home mechanics who need repair functions along with basic diagnostics. The Launch 129i has been upgraded for 2021 with more intuitive navigation and wider vehicle coverage, allowing you to perform comprehensive diagnostics more easily.
The functions of the Launch 129i start with full OBD2 support. Along with that, you can read error codes and sensor data from the transmission, ABS, and SRS systems. This includes real-time data monitoring, which you can view graphically or record to playback or print.
Even better, you can use the Launch 129i to reset the oil light after service, calibrate the steering angle, or perform throttle adaptation. It also supports TPMS, and EPB reset, covering the most common service functions used by DIY mechanics.
Launch’s customer support is another perk of using their scan tools. Since the Launch 129i has built-in Wi-Fi, you can reach out for tech support advice straight through the scanner. The same goes for updates, free for life, making the Launch 129i an excellent long-term investment for any home mechanic.
The user-friendly Launch 129i is one of the best tools for advanced home mechanics, with a range of useful reset and service functions in addition to comprehensive 4-system diagnostics.Check Price at Amazon
Launch CRP123: Most Reliable OBD2 scanner with ABS/ SRS/ Transmission
The 4-system diagnosis of the Launch CRP123 includes both ABS and SRS, as well as engine and transmission. Sensor data can be viewed graphically on the scanner or saved and printed through a computer for more in-depth analysis.
The user-friendly interface on the Launch CRP123 has a built-in tutorial with one-click access. That makes it an excellent choice for home mechanics since it’s easy to learn and navigate even without a lot of experience.
You’ll get relatively broad compatibility with the Launch CRP123, as well. One thing to note is that it doesn’t work with trucks and also has difficulty with Dodge vehicles. Aside from that, it’s compatible with most makes and models made in 2006 or later and is an especially great choice for Chevy, Mercedes, and Lexus drivers.
The Launch CRP123 is a user-friendly tool for diagnosing the four major systems in your vehicle.Check Price at Amazon
Launch CRP123i: Best OBD2 ABS airbag scan tool with battery test
Here’s another upgrade of the Launch CRP123. With the CRP123i, you get an improved Android 7.0 operating system and a more powerful 6100mAh battery. This means smoother navigation and long-lasting performance for conducting full diagnoses of your vehicle.
Along with the 4-system diagnosis, the Launch CRP123i has a battery health check and real-time voltage monitoring, a huge help in troubleshooting electrical issues. We also like how easy it is to record and share health reports or other data, letting you maintain vehicle health logs or share the information with mechanics.
The Launch CRP123i also includes expanded convenience features. The built-in Wi-Fi connection makes it easy to update straight through the device, and doing so is free for life. Along with that, you have the choice of touchscreen or button navigation, so it’s easy to use this diagnostic scanner even when your hands are dirty.
Built-in Wi-Fi, an upgraded operating system, and a choice of touchscreen or button navigation make the Launch CRP123i one of the most convenient 4-system diagnostic tools on the market.Check Price at Amazon
Autel Diaglink: Best affordable ABS SRS scan tool with full system diagnosis and oil reset
The Autel Diaglink is the home mechanic version of their popular MD802. It brings together comprehensive professional-level diagnostic power with an easy and intuitive operation, making it one of the best airbag scanners for DIY-ers.
You can read and clear codes from all systems using the Autel Diaglink. This gives you a more comprehensive picture of your engine’s health than 4-system scanners, which can’t access information from systems like climate control. It also supports all ten modes of OBD2, including onboard monitoring and component tests and two service functions (oil reset and EPB reset).
While the vehicle compatibility of the Autel Diaglink is broad, you won’t get access to all of them right out of the box. You’ll get a diagnosis for one vehicle make free with the scan tool. To add additional cars, you’ll need to download separate software at $10/vehicle. This isn’t necessarily an issue for a DIYer but does limit the use of the Autel Diaglink for professional mechanics.
The full-system diagnosis power of the Autel Diaglink makes it an excellent value for the price and one of the best hand-held SRS scanners for DIY mechanics.Check Price at Amazon
Choosing the right ABS SRS code reader starts by deciding which features and functions you need. As an everyday driver, basic code reading and PID data reading, like you’ll get with models such as BlueDriver or the Launch CRP123X, should be plenty.
On the other hand, professional mechanics will want a model that’s capable of more in-depth diagnostic and repair functions. Bi-directional testing is another helpful feature for professionals, allowing you to identify malfunctioning sensors, valves, and other components.
Whichever way you go, one of the scanners above should fit your needs! We hope this review has helped you figure out the right SRS/ABS code reader for you.
How To bleed ABS brake with a scan tool
Some ABS systems can be bled manually, but this can be a tedious process and it won’t work for all vehicles. Scan tools allow you to activate the pumps and cycle the valves in the system, pushing air out.
As with the SRS reset above, you should check the tool manual to make sure of the exact steps before you start. Generally, though, it’s pretty straightforward:
- Locate the OBD2 port in your vehicle and plug in the ABS diagnostic tool.
- Turn the vehicle key on without starting the engine. The scan tool should turn on automatically when you do this.
- Locate the Automated bleed function on the scan tool. Some tools will automatically read your VIN data, while others will require you to enter the vehicle data manually.
- Verify the vehicle is in park, then start the process.
- The scan tool will instruct you to press down on the brake pedal. Follow the instructions on the screen until the process finishes. The whole process usually takes less than 5 minutes.
1. Does the Launch CRP123 work on Mac?
Unfortunately, no. To update this device, you’ll need to use a PC running Windows 7, 8, or XP.
2. Does the Launch CRP123 do crank relearn?
No, this function isn’t supported by the Launch CRP123. If you need this function, you should look at the Launch X431 Pro, which does include it.
3. Will the Foxwell NT630 Plus read the transmission fluid temperature?
No, the Foxwell NT630 Plus doesn’t read the transmission system. It’s only for the engine, ABS, and SRS. If you need transmission diagnostic capability, the Foxwell NT614 or NT624 will do the trick.
4. Do I need any special software to bleed ABS with the Foxwell NT630 Plus?
No, that function is available right out of the box. Having said that, it’s not universally available for all supported vehicles. Make sure you check the specific ABS bleed compatibility to verify that it works for your vehicle.
5. Which devices is the BlueDriver app compatible with?
The BlueDriver app can be downloaded onto any iOS or Android device, including both phones and tablets.
6. Can BlueDriver read short and long term fuel trim data?
Yes, this data is available under the “Live Data” area of the BlueDriver app. However, it may not be available for all vehicles. You can check the FAQ on their website to confirm if it’s supported for your car or truck.
7. How can I register the online software of the Autel AL619?
You can register this tool by going to Autel’s website. After you’ve successfully registered following the prompts on the screen, you’ll be able to download updates or request service through the warranty.
8. Does the AL619 read transmission codes?
No, the Autel AL619 is designed to diagnose the ABS, SRS, and engine, and can’t read codes from the transmission.
9. Do you have to pay for software updates on the Ancel AD610?
No, updates of this device are free for life. You will need to register first, which you can do through Ancel’s website.
10. Does the Ancel AD610 relearn the throttle body sensor?
No, unfortunately that function isn’t supported on this tool.
11. Does the Innova 3100J read all SRS and ABS codes?
This tool can read all trouble codes put out by the SRS, ABS, and engine systems. However, it cannot clear permanent codes, which are activated when there is an immediate safety issue with the system. For those, you’ll need to go to a mechanic or get a professional scan tool.
12. Does the Innova 3100J work right out of the box?
Yes, it arrives ready to go without needing initial updating or set-up. You can also use the tool without registering it, though you’ll need to do so when it’s time to update or request service.
13. What is the difference between the Launch CRP123 and the Launch CRP123X?
The CRP123X is the upgraded version of the Launch CRP123. It has expanded vehicle coverage, more language options, and extra functions like auto VIN and a one-click update through Wi-Fi. Between the two, the Launch CRP123X is the better option for most users.
14. Does the Launch CRP123X read real-time transmission data?
Yes, you can read several parameters from the transmission in real-time, including temperature and other performance data.
15. Can you bleed ABS using the Launch CRP123i?
Unfortunately, no. The Launch CRP123i can diagnose the anti-lock brake system but cannot take control of the valves and pumps to automatically bleed them.
16. Will the Launch CRP123i read transmission codes from all vehicles?
The Launch CRP123i has a broad compatibility, with coverage for more than 10,0000 cars, trucks, and SUVs. It will read transmission codes for the majority of vehicles on the road today, but having said that, no scan tool is 100% comprehensive. If you want to verify that it will read transmission codes for your vehicle, your best bet is to contact Launch customer support before you buy it.
17. What makes the Launch 129i different from the Launch CRP123 line?
The main difference is the inclusion of service functions like oil reset and SAS calibration. The Launch CRP123 line of scan tools can perform 4-system diagnosis and battery monitoring similar to what the Launch 129i offers, but lack the 5 reset functions it includes.
18. Will the Launch 129i work on diesel trucks?
Yes, as long as they’re from one of the 57+ manufacturers included in its compatibility. This includes larger trucks like the Ford F250 Super Duty.
19. How do you add additional vehicles to the Autel Diaglink?
For each make and model of vehicle you want to diagnose with the Autel Diaglink, you’ll need to download the corresponding software. Start by purchasing the software from their website then log in to the PC suite for the scan tool. Once you do this, your download list should sync with the Autel database and you’ll be able to install the software on your device.
20. Does the Autel Diaglink work with Japanese vehicles?
If the vehicle uses the OBD2 diagnostic system, the Autel Diaglink will work with it. However, the Diaglink is not compatible with JOBD protocols. Check your user manual if you’re not sure which your vehicle uses.