FIXD Vs. Carly Vs. Carista: Which is better for my car?

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FIXD, Carly, and Carista are some of the most popular diagnostics apps for modern cars. However, they are pretty distinct from each other. FIXD is a basic diagnostics app, but it offers live monitoring of your vehicle. Carly and Carista don’t have an active car monitor function. But they can help you customize and service your car. With every app, there are pros and cons

This article compares FIXD Vs. Carly Vs. Carista to help you choose the best app for your car. 

Please read to the end to find out our top recommendation. 

FIXD Vs. Carly Vs. Carista: Overview 

Many drivers don’t know what to do when the Check Engine Light comes up. Sometimes a gas cap is loose. But other times, you have a problem that needs urgent fixing. 

With the FIXD, Carly, or Carista OBD2 apps, you can save yourself a trip to the mechanic by diagnosing and working on your vehicle. These apps are super easy and intuitive to use.

The FIXD app can diagnose all vehicles with an OBD2 connector. However, it cannot change the ECU modules for vehicle customization. A distinguishing feature between Carly and Carista is that Carly stores backup of codes and offers more sophistication in coding than Carista. 

fixd vs carly vs carista
FIXD, Carly, and Carista all have their developer adapter that you connect to an OBD2 connector. Their specific adapters connect to a smartphone or tablet over Bluetooth.

FIXD Vs. Carly Vs. Carista: Complete comparison chart 

FIXDCarlyCarista
Supported operating system iOS, AndroidiOS, AndroidiOS, Android
OBD2 functions and enhanced codes Read and clear fault codes Emission check Freeze frame Read and clear fault codesOE-level diagnostics Emission check Read and clear fault codesOE-level diagnostics Emission check
System diagnosticsABS, TPMS, Airbag, and Transmission All systems All systems 
Advanced service functions None 6+5+
Customization/ Coding NoYesYes
Vehicle coverage1996 and newer OBD2 compliant vehicles (basic diagnostics) Chrysler, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Nissan (Advanced diagnostics)1996 and newer OBD2 compliant vehicles (basic diagnostics) BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, Skoda, Seat, and Mini cars (Advanced diagnostics and customization)1996 and newer OBD2 compliant vehicles (basic diagnostics) Audi, BMW, Lexus, Mini, Toyota, Volkswagen, Seat, and Skoda (Advanced diagnostics and customization)
Best matched adapter “fixd
FIXD Adapter
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carly scanner+
Carly Scanner+
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“OBDCheck
OBDCheck BLE+
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FIXD Vs. Carly Vs. Carista: What do they share?

The three apps are free to download on iOS and Android devices. They all have their developer adapter that you connect to an OBD2 connector. Their specific adapters connect to a smartphone or tablet over Bluetooth. However, Carista can use generic adapters like Veepeak OBDCheck BL+ and OBDLink MX+. 

You can use the applications right after download because all of them have some free features. For example, on the FIXD, you can use the app without ever needing to subscribe to the pro app. The same applies to Carly and Carista, but you get more out of these apps with a paid version.

FIXD Adapter

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Carly Scanner+

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OBDCheck BLE+ (for Carista)

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FIXD Vs. Carly Vs. Carista: What are their differences?

OBD2 functions and system diagnostics 

Advanced diagnostics on FIXD are only for Chrysler, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Nissan. On Carista, advanced diagnostics are for Audi, BMW, Cupra, Infiniti, Lexus, Mini, Nissan, Scion, Seat, Skoda, Toyota, and Volkswagen.

FIXD, Carly, and Carista can read and clear codes from the engine. They can also access enhanced codes from the transmission, airbag, ABS, TPMS, and other manufacturer-specific systems on the vehicle. However, advanced diagnostics are only accessible with a premium subscription on all three apps. 

For Carly, advanced features are available for Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Mini, Lexus, Porsche, Renault, Seat, Skoda, VW, and Toyota. 

We like that Carista offers a 1-month free to perform advanced diagnostics on supported vehicles.  

Nonetheless, on FIXD and Carly, you can see the severity of the issue. FIXD gives you a detailed report of the error. Carly, on the other hand, gives you DTCs with a color code to tell you whether the fault code is bad, average, or very bad. Hence, you’ll be in the know about the ideal repair and maintenance to take up. 

You’ll also be able to see the general engine live data on the three apps. Freeze frame information is only possible on FIXD. For emission checks, it’s free on Carly and Carista, but it’s a paid feature on the FIXD app. 

It’s important to note that the live data function on Carista largely depends on how the apps support your specific vehicle. For example, live data is available on Audi A8 but not on Audi A1/S1.

And, in some vehicles, Carista is going to give you only the general engine live data. But in others, it can show you turbo live data, automatic transmission info, and 12V battery live data. It will also tell you the mileage and time since your last service. 

Lastly, Carista can tell you service interval information and how many times your vehicle has deployed the airbag. The airbag crash count feature is handy if you’re buying a used vehicle. 

OBDLink MX+

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Veepeak OBDCheck BLE+

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Read more: Procharger vs. turbocharger vs. supercharger: Which is best for me?

Advanced service functions/Reset functions 

FIXD does not offer reset functions. It has maintenance tracking using its Active Car Health Monitor. The FIXD adapter continuously tracks your vehicle and relays information to the app about maintenance schedules. 

And when it comes to repairs, FIXD has a mechanic hotline where you can get in touch with a mechanic six days a week. The automotive specialist will give you a second opinion and can walk you through DIY repairs. 

Other maintenance features to look forward to with FIXD include issue forecast. This function gives you info about possible future problems. It means you can take steps to avoid the occurrence. This will go a long way in extending the life of your vehicle. 

What’s more, FIXD will tell you all about the most common issues. So, you get to walk into a mechanic’s shop with confidence. 

Carly and Carista support various maintenance and service resets depending on your vehicle’s make and model. 

Nevertheless, they offer maintenance functions for common resets. These include DPF regeneration, service indicator reset, EPB service, battery registration, and many others. 

FIXD Adapter

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Customization/Coding 

Again, FIXD is mainly a diagnostics app. It does not offer much other than basic and advanced diagnostics. So, if you’re going for an app that can help customize your vehicle, Carly and Carista are ideal. 

Now, coding with Carly is only available for BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, Skoda, Seat, and Mini. Meanwhile, Carista is compatible with Audi, BMW, Lexus, Mini, Toyota, Volkswagen, Seat, and Skoda. Depending on your vehicle’s model, you can customize a wide variety of features. 

When you open the customization tabs on these applications, you get available customizations for your vehicle. Both apps have their ECU information in plain English, not bytes and bits. So, all you need is to find the module you want to modify, select the value you want to input, and select okay. 

We noted that Carly stores backup for the previous coding values in the process of inputting a new setting. It means that you can revert to previous settings if you don’t like the new ones. 

We did not see an indication of code backup on the Carista. It’s something to be aware of.

Carly Scanner+

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Supported protocols 

FIXD, Carly, and Carista support the five OBD2 communication protocols. This allows them to diagnose older vehicles as far as 1996. The protocols are ISO-9141-2, KWP 2000-4, SAE J1850 PWM, SAE J1850 VPW, and ISO 15765-4. 

Support vehicle years and models

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Price, extra fees, In-App fees, and updates 

The FIXD app costs around $60 and comes with a free adapter. While the basic features are free, the advanced features come at a $69 yearly price. You get a one-year warranty for the adapter. And the good thing, you don’t need to pay per item. It’s a yearly payment for all the pro features. 

Besides, it can connect to five FIXD adapters to one phone. So, if your family has several vehicles, you need only one subscription for all sensors. 

Carly is on the high-end side if we can call it that. It will cost you approximately $120. The amount covers the app because the Carly adapter is free. It offers one-time, free, in-depth diagnostics for your vehicle. This will allow you to check if the app works for you or not. 

After that, you will want to pay for the yearly subscription to access more than just the essential diagnostic features.

With Carly, you either get a subscription for one vehicle or comprehensive coverage for all brands. This option is best if you have different brands like one BMW and one Audi.

Carista gives you different payment options after your free one-month trial. You can either go for a monthly subscription for $10 or a 3-month subscription at $6.66 that you pay every three months. A yearly subscription is billed yearly and will cost you $4.44 a month. The Carista adapter, on the other hand, will set you back at approximately $30. 

You get free lifetime updates on all three apps.

FIXD Adapter

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Carly Scanner+

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OBDCheck BLE+ (for Carista)

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FIXD car health monitor

Pros

  • Easy to use for newbies
  • Can read and translate over 7,000 engine codes
  • Can be used with up to five FIXD sensors
  • Gives you maintenance reminders
  • Provides details of car problem
  • It has access to mechanics and repair information

Cons

  • Advanced diagnostics are for specific vehicle brands

FIXD Adapter

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Carly OBD2 App 

Pros

  • Offers diagnostics, reset features, and coding functions
  • Live parameters in the free version
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Shows the severity of each fault code
  • Provides manufacturer-level scanning

Cons

  • A bit expensive than other apps in its class
  • It can only connect to one OBD2 device

Carly Scanner+

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Carista OBD2 App 

Pros

  • Provides dealer-level diagnostics
  • Can personalize a vehicle’s ECU modules
  • One-click action for service resets
  • It comes with a one-month free trial
  • Supports both iOS and Android

Cons

  • Needs extra fees for full features

OBDLink MX+

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Veepeak OBDCheck BLE+

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Which Is the Better App for My Car?

While the three apps support the OBD2 protocol fully, they don’t support all vehicles the same way. If you want to know basic diagnostics without getting into manufacturer systems, you can pick any app for all vehicles made after 1996. 

But if you’re looking to examine more than the Engine and your vehicle is a Chrysler, Ford, or Honda, we recommend the FIXD app. Apart from giving you access to advanced diagnostics, you can also get maintenance schedules delivered right to your phone. 

FIXD is the best choice for its detailed reports and mechanic help.  It can save you on labor costs by informing you about the confirmed fix, and costs estimate to perform the fix.

Carly is the best option for BMW, Audi, Volkswagen, Skoda, Seat, and Mini vehicles. It gives you all the possible features depending on your model. Generally, you personalize, repair, and perform maintenance for your vehicle with a premium subscription without ever visiting the mechanic. 

Finally, Carista also supports the vehicle brands by Carly. But it adds Cupra, Infiniti, Lexus, Nissan, and Toyota. So, if you own one of these, Carista offers exceptional features for your vehicle. And, its yearly subscription is cheaper than the other two apps. 

Compatible Adapters

FIXD Adapter 

Pros

  • 7000+ engine codes
  • Advanced diagnostics
  • Can track car’s maintenance schedule
  • Can be left plugged in vehiclel
  • Can turn off CEL

Cons

  • It’s not as versatile for the price

FIXD Adapter

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Carly Scanner+

Pros

  • Free with the app
  • Free basic diagnostics
  • Offers “used care check” function
  • It can access advanced diagnostics
  • Provides wide customization options

Cons

  • Free advanced diagnostics is a one-time offer

Carly Scanner+

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Veepeak OBDCheck BLE+ 

Pros

  • Read and clear fault codes
  • Can perform smog checks
  • Provides real-time sensor readings
  • The small size won’t obstruct legroom

Cons

  • Enhanced diagnostics and PIDs are on select vehicles

Veepeak OBDCheck BLE+

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Pros

  • Supports iOS, Android, and Windows devices
  • Can provide live parameters for multiple PIDs
  • Provides over-voltage and battery drain protection
  • Hacker-proof
  • Can be left plugged-in
  • Free firmware updates

Cons

  • Customer service takes a long respond

OBDLink MX+

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You can buy the Carista adapter right on caristaapp.com

Final Thoughts 

FIXD, Carly, and Carista are industry leaders in monitoring vehicle performance. Each is distinct from the other. But we hope we’ve set them apart so you can make an easy choice. 

In summary, FIXD is perfect for maintenance and repair information for DIYers. Carly is an excellent choice for the customization of its supported vehicles. Carista is the cheapest option of the three. Plus, it still offers coding options without breaking the bank. 

Roll your sleeves and get in the hood because the second pair of eyes you need is the app on your hand.

FIXD Adapter

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Carly Scanner+

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OBDCheck BLE+ (for Carista)

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