Best Toyota OBD2/OBD1 scanners and software for DIY 2021 [review]

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A Toyota scan tool is a handy device to check a dashboard warning light that’s interrupting your drive. In this guide, we discuss the best OBD1 and OBD2 scan tools for Toyota and Lexus vehicles. These gadgets will give you special access to your car, so you don’t have to drive to a mechanic whenever your vehicle is not running correctly.

To this end, it’s challenging to narrow down to the best Toyota OBD1 scanner or the best-wired OBD2 scanner for your needs. But don’t worry. That’s what we are about.

We share our research and expert knowledge to help you find the best Toyota Bluetooth scan tool as well as the best Toyota diagnostic software.

Here we go!

best Toyota scan tools
If you’re looking for the best Lexus/Toyota scan tools, this is the right place

1. Top 3 Toyota/Lexus wired OBD2 scanners

Out for a standalone wired OBD2 scanner for your Toyota or Lexus vehicle? Autel, Foxwell, and Launch are popular brands in the scanner market. Today, we look at one scanner from each brand.

Foxwell NT510 Elite is a model for DIYers and professionals. Thanks to its capability to perform active tests, it offers more than the average scan tool in terms of functionality.

Meanwhile, car enthusiasts will delight in a simple plug-and-play tool like the Launch CRP129E. At the same time, beginners will love working with the Autel Al319.

Top 3 Toyota/Lexus wired OBD2 scanners comparison chart

Foxwell NT510 Elite
Foxwell NT510 Elite
Check Price
Launch CRP129E
Launch CRP129E
Check Price
Autel AL319
Autel AL319
Check Price
Customer Rating
3.9
4.5
4.6
Price range$179-$199$259-$279$29-$49
OBD2 Diagnostics10/10*10/1010/10
System Diagnostics10/106/1010/10
Advanced Service Functions6/105/101/10
Vehicle CoverageFull OBD2 for 1996-2001 Toyota, Lexus, & Scion Basic OBD2 for all OBD2-compatible carsAll 1996 and newer OBD2-compliant vehiclesAll 1996 and newer OBD2 compliant vehicles

*Notes: Excellent: 9-10; Good: 7-8; Fair: 5-6; Poor: 3-4; Very poor: 1-2

Best Toyota/Lexus wired OBD2 scanners: Foxwell NT510 Elite, Launch CRP129E, or Autel AL319?

OBD2 functions and system diagnostics

FOXWELL NT510 Elite

Foxwell NT510 Elite
Foxwell NT510 Elite
3.9
Put all system diagnostic data at your fingertips. This scanner goes beyond reading and erasing codes. It’s bidirectional, so you can also perform active tests at a fraction of the cost of advanced scanners.

Let’s start with the most popular of all, the Foxwell NT510 Elite. This scan tool is marketed towards professionals since it is a bi-directional device. But the good thing is that it has a very user-friendly interface that anyone with no experience can use.

This particular model can perform full OBD2 diagnostics on all systems. It covers the engine, transmission, ABS, SRS, TPMS, and other modules in Toyota and Lexus vehicles.

What’s more, Foxwell NT510 Elite can access codes, provide freeze frame data, and perform live data streams in graphic form for essential vehicle systems. In addition, this device is capable of acquiring vehicle information automatically. It means you don’t need to input the info for the specific vehicle that you want to scan. Once you connect the gadget, it starts to diagnose trouble codes immediately.

Launch CRP129E

Launch CRP129E
Launch CRP129E
4.5
Small, lightweight, and powerful. Launch CRP129E is a home mechanic and DIYer must-have. With features reserved for professionals. Expect to access all vital attributes for more than 50 car makes.

Now, with the Launch CRP129E, you will be able to read and erase trouble codes from the engine, SRS, ABS, and transmission. It is a midrange tool for car owners since it can also provide live data in graph form. Not to mention the capability to record the live data stream for up to ten simultaneous PIDs.

The Launch CRP129E also allows you to see the I/M readiness status and perform oxygen sensor and EVAP tests.

Autel AL319

Autel AL319
Autel AL319
4.6
An awesome tool for the average user. You’ll enjoy tinkering with your Toyota and fixing your Lexus with the help of this scanner.

Autel AL319 is truly the ultimate pick in terms of ease and affordability. Also, as a standalone device, you will enjoy features like a patented one-click I/M Readiness key, a built-in speaker, and a TFT color display.

This tool helps drivers solve basic drivability and engine problems. It is an excellent tool for beginners since it can read and clear trouble codes from all systems. It can retrieve generic and manufacturer-specific, and pending codes. As a result, you can easily determine the cause of the Check Engine Light.

With the Autel AL319, you can turn off the CEL, clear codes, and reset monitors. Other features include viewing freeze frame data, reading live PCM data streams, and retrieving vehicle information.

Of the three tools, Foxwell NT510 Elite is the most affordable full-system diagnostic scanner. It’s our recommendation for car owners and DIYers.

Foxwell NT510 Elite

Foxwell NT510 Elite

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

Advanced service functions

If you are looking for a scan tool that helps you reset components after repairs, you may want to consider the Foxwell NT510 Elite.
Foxwell NT510 Elite supports nine advanced service functions including ABS bleeding, oil reset, TSAS calibration, EPB reset, and DPF regeneration.

Foxwell NT510 Elite supports nine advanced service functions. These include ABS bleeding, oil reset, TSAS calibration, EPB reset, and DPF regeneration. Furthermore, it offers advanced ECU coding functions. It allows you to recalibrate, adapt, or configure different components after performing repairs.

On the other hand, Launch CRP129E offers only five service resets. These are oil reset, EPB, TPMS reset, steering angle calibration, and throttle position reset.

Finally, Autel AL319 is a basic scanner in that it does not support advanced service functions.

So, if you are looking for a scan tool that helps you reset components after repairs, you may want to consider the Foxwell NT510 Elite.

Foxwell NT510 Elite
Foxwell NT510 Elite
3.9
Put all system diagnostic data at your fingertips. This scanner goes beyond reading and erasing codes. It’s bidirectional, so you can also perform active tests at a fraction of the cost of advanced scanners.

Vehicle coverage

All the three stand-alone OBD2 scanners can read and clear codes from most OBD2-compliant vehicles made from 1996 and newer.

In addition, Foxwell NT510 supports all system diagnostics from 1996-2021 Toyota, Scion, and Lexus vehicles. 

Weaknesses 

Foxwell NT510 Elite is a well-rounded tool. However, it does not support ABS bleeding on some hybrid vehicles. These include Toyota Highlander Hybrid, Lexus RX, and others. 

Another common complaint about this tool is the preloaded software. If it comes with the software of another vehicle brand, you have to go through updating the software to get it to work on your specific vehicle. 

For the Launch CRP129E, we don’t particularly like that there’s no US Launch Support for the device. If there’s a problem with the device, you have to get in touch with Launch Asia, which can be a hit or miss. This can be particularly so if a special feature does not work as intended.

One of the weaknesses we found on the Autel AL319 is that it does not support all vehicles. If you’re not sure if the device supports your car, it’s best to verify with customer support. Another thing is that you can’t tell what version of software you have. This means you can’t know whether or not you have the latest version. 

Finally, Autel AL319 may come without a manual. If yours doesn’t come with one, you’ll need to download and print it out. But it’s a minor issue.

Foxwell NT510 Elite

Foxwell NT510 Elite

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

Read more: [review] FOXWELL NT510 Elite: It’s hard to find a better multi-system OBD1 and OBD2 scan tool

2. Top 2 Toyota/Lexus Bluetooth OBD2 scanners

You can now turn your smartphone, tablet, or PC into a car scanner with the help of a Bluetooth OBD2 scanner. We are talking about the OBDLink MX+ and OBDCheck BL+ devices. These wireless OBD2 scanners can pair directly with third-party devices to check your car’s health.

While the OBLink MX+ can operate on iOS, Android, and Windows, OBDCheck BLE+ is only iOS and Android compatible.

Top 2 Toyota/Lexus OBD2 Bluetooth scanners comparison chart

OBDLink MX+
OBDLink MX+
Check Price
VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE+
VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE+
Check Price
Customer Rating
4.7
4.6
Price range$89-$109$29-$49
Best Matched AppOBDLink (Included free) Carista OBD2 ForScanTorque Pro Carista OBD2 ForScan
Operating SystemsiOS, Android, WindowsAndroid, iOS
OBD2 Diagnostics10/10*10/10
Enhanced OEM Support✔ (for Toyota/Lexus/Scion, GM, Ford, Mazda, Kia, Honda, Hyundai, and Nissan/Infinity--
System Diagnostics10/106/10
Advanced Service FunctionsWith Carista OBD2 or FORScan appWith Carista OBD2
Vehicle Coverage1996 and newer cars, SUVs, and light trucksAll 1996 and newer OBD2-compliant vehicles

*Notes: Excellent: 9-10; Good: 7-8; Fair: 5-6; Poor: 3-4; Very poor: 1-2

Best matched apps and diagnostic functions

OBDLink MX+ and OBDCheck BLE+ are pocket-size OBD2 adapters. These scan tools connect over Bluetooth to a smartphone, tablet, or PC. The best thing about these devices is that they are compatible with a ton of third-party apps.

The OBDLink MX+ scan tool comes with its proprietary OBDLink app for free. It does not require any in-app purchases or subscription fees.

For Toyota/Lexus vehicles it’s best to pair OBDLink MX+ with the Carista OBD2, Torque Pro for Android, or ForScan diagnostic apps. This way, you can perform more than just reading and erasing engine trouble codes.

OBDLink MX+
OBDLink MX+
4.7
Enhanced auto scanner with great functionality. This tool gives you access to OEM codes and bidirectional tests. What more could ask for in a budget-friendly Bluetooth scanner?

Carista OBD2, ForScan, Torque Pro, and OBD Fusion apps are compatible with the OBDCheck BLE+ scanner. In fact, you may want to start with one of these apps since OBDCheck BLE+ does not come with its diagnostic app.

Down to diagnosis, you’ll be able to read trouble codes when the check engine light comes up. These scanners can also reset the CEL and help you prepare for a smog test. In addition, these gadgets can access real-time driving data.

Other similar functions include dashboard customization, measuring and displaying fuel economy, and accessing freeze frame information.

VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE+
VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE+
4.6
Out for a simple but reliable scan tool? This is the model for you. All it needs is the perfect app pairing to unlock some cool advanced features.

The OBDLink MX+ can access parameters from non-OBD2 systems such as ABS, TPMS, SRS, etc. The device can pull P1 codes for Toyota/Lexus/Scion, GM, Ford, Mazda, Nissan/Infinity, Hyundai and Kia.

With the Carista OBD2 app, OBDLink MX+ can provide the oil reset function. The scanner also supports bidirectional controls. Hence, it can perform tests such as starting the car remotely, locking and unlocking doors, etc.

So, if you find that you need to perform bidirectional tests, you may want to forego the OBDCheck BLE+ in favor of the OBDLink MX+.

So, which other functions can the OBDCheck BLE+ perform with the help of third-party apps?

Veepeak OBDCheck BLE+ is the perfect Toyota scan tool for you with its advanced functions
OBDCheck BLE+ can perform enhanced diagnostics and PIDs on Lexus, Toyota, Ford, Nissan, and FCA when paired with the OBD Fusion app.

Well, OBDCheck BLE+ can perform enhanced diagnostics and PIDs on Lexus, Toyota, Ford, Nissan, and FCA when paired with the OBD Fusion app. Also, it can customize selected Toyota, Lexus, BMW, Audi, and VW vehicles when you pair it with the Carista OBD2 app.

Supported protocols and vehicle coverage

Both scanners support all five OBD2 protocols. These are J1850 VPW, J1850 PWM, ISO 15765-4, ISO 9141-2, and ISO 14230-4. As a result, OBDLink MX+ and OBDCheck BLE+ are ideal tools for foreign and domestic OBD2-compliant vehicles from Jan 1996 to date.

However, it’s important to remember that you have to pair these scanners with diagnostic apps to access more features and functions.

Weaknesses

OBLink MX+ stays on even when the car is off. It means it can drain the battery a little bit when you leave it plugged in the OBD2 port. It’s better not to leave it for more than 2 days to avoid drainage for the vehicle battery.

Since OBDLink MX+ is not a high-end device, the quality is not the best. The reset button tends to break after some time. When this happens, you may need a replacement. But it’s a bit complicated since customer support is not always responsive. 

Another thing we noticed is that it does not find all iOS devices on the first try. You have to plug in and unplug several times before getting a stable Bluetooth connection. Plus, it does not work entirely with newer iPhones like iPhone 12. 

On the other hand, OBDCheck BLE+ does not work on some diesel vehicles like the Ford F250 diesel. Also, it does not always work with the Dr. Prius app. So, it’s best to pair it with our recommended apps, such as Carista OBD2 and ForScan.

And like its MX+ counterpart, the OBDCheck BLE+ does not have robust construction. You’ll want to avoid dropping it because it may stop working since it does not have a protective cover.

OBDLink MX+

OBDLink MX+

Rating

Price range: $89-$109

VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE+

VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE+

Rating

Price range: $29-$49

Read more: VEEPEAK OBDCheck BLE Vs. BLE+: Never buy it before you know it

Looking for software that works great with PCs? Let’s now look at two of the best PC-based software for Toyota and Lexus vehicles.

3. Top 2 Toyota OBD1 scanners

(also used for Hybrids and OBD2 vehicles)

All Toyota vehicles manufactured between 1981 and 1995 use an OBD1 diagnostic system. Any Toyota-specific OBD1 scanner can only be used on Toyota vehicles. This is because OBD1 scanners are manufacturer-specific. As a result, one scanner will not work on two different brands even if they have the same problem.

Nevertheless, some OBD2 scanners also offer OBD1 coverage which helps to diagnose older vehicles with modern technology devices.

Top 2 OBD1 scanners comparison chart

INNOVA 3170RS
INNOVA 3170RS
Check Price
INNOVA 3120RS
INNOVA 3120RS
Check Price
Customer Rating
4.5
4.4
Price range$269-$289$179-$199
ProtocolsOBD1, OBD2OBD1, OBD2
Read and Clear OBD1 CodesEngineEngine
OBD2 Functions10/10*5/10
System Diagnostics10/105/10
OBD1 cable included-- (You have to buy separately)
Hybrids Support
Vehicle Coverage (Cars, SUVs, Trucks, Hybrids)1996 and newer OBD2 cars, light trucks, hybrids, and SUVs 1981-1995 Toyota, Chrysler, GM, Ford, & Honda1981-1995 Toyota, Ford, GM, Honda, & Chrysler and most 1996 and newer cars and trucks

*Notes: Excellent: 9-10; Good: 7-8; Fair: 5-6; Poor: 3-4; Very poor: 1-2

Best Toyota OBD1 scanners: Innova 3170RS or Innova 3120RS?

Innova offers some of the best OBD scanners on the market. The brand bundles up both OBD1 and OBD2 adapters for some of the most popular domestic and import vehicle makes. Perhaps the most reliable and sought OBD2 scanners with OBD1 coverage are the Innova 3170RS and Innova 3120 RS for Toyota vehicles.

INNOVA 3170RS

INNOVA 3170RS

Rating

Price range: $269-$289

INNOVA 3120RS

INNOVA 3120RS

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

Read and clear OBD1 codes

The Innova 3170RS and Innova 3120RS can access OBD1 diagnostic trouble codes on your Toyota. They can read and monitor engine performance, check the emission system, and give you warning messages. These tools can also clear the Check Engine Light (CEL).

OBD2 functions and system diagnostics

Now, this is where these Innova scanners shine. The Innova 3170RS is a much more advanced scanner than the Innova 3120RS. It offers all ten OBD2 test modes.

Apart from the general trouble codes, the Innova 3170RS can also read codes for the ABS and SRS modules. It can provide info for hybrid battery voltage, TPMS, tire pressure, and the device can perform smog checks.

Not to mention a live data feature to access crucial vehicle information like oil temperature, RPM, or driving speed. Furthermore, it is also great at checking and testing the battery to know whether or not you need to bring the vehicle to the repair shop.

When it comes to advanced service features, Innova 3170RS provides EPB/ABS brake bleeding. In addition, it also offers battery reset and initialization as well as oil reset and all-system network scan.

The Innova 3120RS is also an in-depth OBD2 scanner. Apart from retrieving trouble codes, it can show the freeze frame data. You can also read live data like oil temperature and RPMs, which come in handy when troubleshooting problems and making repairs.

Furthermore, the Innova 3120RS can read ABS and SRS codes, and it includes some essential repair functions like oil reset.

For those who want to perform repairs at home, you’ll like the Innova 3170RS more than the Innova 3120RS. It has more advanced service functions and can retrieve more codes for advanced diagnostics.

INNOVA 3170RS
INNOVA 3170RS
4.5
Great tool for the advanced DIYer. It’s reliable, easy-to-use, and most importantly, it’s an affordable tool that doesn’t disappoint.

OBD1 cable

The Innova 3170RS does not come with an OBD1 cable. You’ll have to buy it separately. The gadget comes with an OBD2 cable and is Bluetooth and Wi-Fi enabled. To this end, OBD1 is entirely optional.

However, the Innova 3120RS comes bundled with an OBD1 cable in the OBD1 adapter kit.  The dongle cable is about 4ft long to give you excellent access to the unit when it’s connected to the OBD port.

INNOVA 3120RS
INNOVA 3120RS
4.4
A powerful OBD2 scanner with OBD1 vehicle coverage. Every Toyota owner will want this scan for fast and easy checks.

Vehicle coverage

Innova 3170RS retrieves enhanced transmission and engine codes in all 1996 and later vehicles and some OBD1 1981-1995 Toyota vehicles. Reading and erasing ABS and SRS codes and playing back OBD2 data graphing is ideal for most 1996 and later Toyota, GM, Ford, Chrysler, and Honda vehicles.

Innova 3120RS can diagnose the majority of cars and trucks from 1981 and later. This also includes hybrids.

For advanced diagnostics in newer vehicles, we still recommend the Innova 3170RS.

Moving on to OBD2 scanners. If you own a Toyota or Lexus, you are looking at two scanner types.

  • Wired OBD2 scanners: These are wired code readers that don’t need a separate device to see the trouble codes. They usually have a large screen, sometimes with color-coded fault lights.
  • Bluetooth OBD2 scanners: Suppose you prefer to use your smartphone or tablet to view trouble codes. This is where a Bluetooth scanner comes in. Such a device connects wirelessly. Hence, you can move around while diagnosing the vehicle.

INNOVA 3170RS

INNOVA 3170RS

Rating

Price range: $269-$289

INNOVA 3120RS

INNOVA 3120RS

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

Weaknesses 

Innova 3170RS is a bulky device. It’s not ideal to hold for long hours if you’re diagnosing many vehicles in a garage. 

It can also be challenging to connect the scanner over Bluetooth since it’s mostly a USB cable gadget. 

And again, it can connect with an app. But once connected, it does not pull codes but only fetches your OEM maintenance schedule. The app asks for the VIN even if you’ve used the scanner before with the cable. You have to type it manually or scan it using your phone’s camera. 

Finally, even if the 3170RS is supposed to auto-bleed the ABS, it does not support this function on all vehicles. 

Innova 3120RS does not support all system scans. It offers diagnostics for main systems like the engine, ABS, and SRS. It also does not give live data graphs. It means you cannot get to the root of the problem using this tool only. As such, it cannot be used for professional purposes. 

Another thing we saw is that it’s challenging to update firmware on the 3120RS. Although you can see what software version the scanner is running, it does not have a prominent menu for software updates.

INNOVA 3170RS

INNOVA 3170RS

Rating

Price range: $269-$289

INNOVA 3120RS

INNOVA 3120RS

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

4. Best Toyota/Lexus Windows-Based software for laptop/PC

This section looks at Techstream, a dealership-standard PC software, and OBDWiz, a DIYer’s best choice for use with PC-based scan tools.

Top 2 choices of PC-based Toyota diagnostic software comparison chart

TechStreamOBDWiz
Operating SystemsWindows 10, 32-bit or 64-bitWindows Vista or Newer (must have Microsoft.NET 2.0 Framework
OBD2 Diagnostics10/10*10/10
Enhanced OEM Support8/108/10
System Diagnostics10/1010/10
Advanced Service Functions8/101/10
Customization/Coding7/101/10
Vehicle Covered (Cars, SUVs, Light Trucks)1987-2021 Toyota/Lexus/ScionAll 1996 and newer OBD2 compliant vehicles

*Notes: Excellent: 9-10; Good: 7-8; Fair: 5-6; Poor: 3-4; Very poor: 1-2

Best Windows-based Toyota OBD2 software: Techstream or OBDWiz?

OBD2 functions and systems diagnostics

Techstream diagnostic software gives you access to all Toyota, Lexus, and Scion-specific trouble codes. It can read all ECU calibration files meaning it can provide information for all modules.

This software can also access the Powertrain, Chassis, and Body electricals. All you need to do is select the system you need to scan, and it does the rest. The dashboard is customizable, plus you can see live data when you’re not running diagnostics. 

Now, if you are a professional and your garage has the budget for the Toyota Techstream software, then go for it. But on a budget, your best option is the Toyota Techstream Lite. It has most of the full version features.

On the other hand, if you have a PC-based scan tool from OBDLink, you may want to pair it with OBDWiz software. It can read and clear all trouble codes, read freeze frame data, and show fuel economy.

OBDWiz provides real-time dashboard display and real-time plotting of over 90 PID values. The dashboard is also customizable. To make things better, it can display battery voltage. What’s more, this software is touchscreen-friendly, and you can use it as a digital dashboard.

Advanced service functions and coding

To perform ECU coding and customizations, you will need a professional subscription with Techstream software. It allows you to customize all electronics and access or repair and maintenance functions that you can’t with ordinary scan tools.

As for OBDWiz, the software is limited to OBD2 and system diagnostics. It does not offer advanced service functions or ECU coding.

Protocols and vehicle coverage

Techstream supports all OBD2 protocols and works on only Toyota models made from 1987 and newer.

However, OBDWiz is not exclusive to Toyota. It can support all 1996 and newer OBD2 cars and light trucks sold in the USA. This software is also compatible with all five OBD2 protocols. It also works with EOBD and JOBD vehicles.

Weaknesses 

The main thing to know about Toyota Techstream is that it is not free. And the subscription is not cheap. It can easily cost you more than $1000 a year. But it all depends on the number of features that you want when using the Techstream software. It’s something new mechanics cannot afford.

We also noticed that there are lots of third-party Techstream software available on many websites. Such software can be suspect, meaning it can have bugs that will cause it to malfunction.

In addition, you cannot use Techstream Lite to reprogram the ECU. You require a professional-level subscription. 

On the OBWiz weaknesses, we found that it only works with OBLink scan tools. It’s unlike other full OBD2 software that can pair with multiple brand scanners. It is also not free, considering the price. Updates are not free, and you will need a valid OBDwiz license to run the software even if you find a free version of OBDwiz online. 

OBDWiz only works with Windows Systems. What’s more, it does not offer more functionality. It’s only best for diagnostics, freeze frame data, recording and playback of monitored data, and export data logging to CSV format.

Techstream diagnostics software works best with either the VCI J2534 cable or the Mini VCI J2534 cable. These adapters support all OBD2 protocols ideal for 1996 and newer Toyota vehicles.

Auto Grills VCI J2534 Cable for Toyota Techstream

Auto Grills VCI J2534 Cable for Toyota Techstream

Rating

Price range: $39-$59

Mini VCI J2534 Techstream Cable

Mini VCI J2534 Techstream Cable

Rating

Price range: $29-$49

To use OBDWiz, we recommend pairing it with ScanTool OBDLink SX USB or the OBDLink LX Bluetooth scanner.

OBDLink LX

OBDLink LX

Rating

Price range: $49-$69

OBDLink SX

OBDLink SX

Rating

Price range: $29-$49

Read more: OBDLink MX+ Vs. LX: Why MX+ is costly but many drivers are hunting for it?

Final thoughts

This detailed review and comparison of the best Toyota/Lexus OBD1/OBD2 scan tools covers the most popular choices in scanners and software. You will find compatible gadgets that work seamlessly with Toyota and Lexus vehicles.

If you are the experienced home mechanic who requires a multifunctional OBD2 tool, we recommend Foxwell NT510. But for the DIYer who performs simple repairs, you will find the OBDLink MX+ very useful.

Foxwell NT510 Elite

Foxwell NT510 Elite

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

OBDLink MX+

OBDLink MX+

Rating

Price range: $89-$109

For those who own both OBD1 and OBD2 Toyota, our top choice is the Innova 3120RS. It allows you to go beyond the CEL and helps you to diagnose the ABS and SRS systems, too.

INNOVA 3120RS

INNOVA 3120RS

Rating

Price range: $179-$199

And if you’re a professional or auto garage owner, we can’t recommend Techstream diagnostic software enough. It grants you dealership-standard access to all Toyota systems.

Don’t wait for tomorrow. Our top choices are all you need.

5 Steps to Choose The Best Lexus/Toyota Scanners

Factors to cosider when buying to choose the best scanners for your car
These are some factors you should consider to choose out the best scanners for your car

Step 1: Top Brands

These three brands are among the top-rated brands to utilize diagnostics on your Toyota, Lexus, or Scion.

Autel

Website: https://www.autel.com/

Autel is a specialist company in the research and development, production, sales, and service of diagnostics in the automotive industry, including analysis and detection systems and electronic components. Autel is involved heavily and globally regarding the automotive intelligent diagnosis and testing field for a time greater than ten years; they have now constructed a trio of product lines, including diagnostic products in the auto trade. These include tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) and assisted driving systems (ADAS) for intelligent assistive driving systems. 

Autel has a mission to create genuine and lasting quality value for all users involved by providing their customers with high ranking services and products. They are virtuous to be one of the leading contributors to automotive equipment globally when it comes to tools, diagnostics, and electronics based on a thorough understanding of customer-based needs and requirements.

Recommendation: Autel Autolink AL319

Autel Autolink AL319

epsoak epsom salt 5 lb

Rating

Price range: $29-$39

Actron

Website: https://actron.com/

Actron aspires to assist you in saving time and money during your vehicle repairs. They offer a vast array of mechanicalized testers, including specialist tools, vacuum pressure gauges, advanced timing lights, and compression testers. Their coding and reading automotive diagnostic equipment works well to swiftly point out problematic integrants for quick, easy, and simple diagnosis while scanning for diagnostic trouble codes (DTC’s). 

Their fit in your hand-sized diagnostic tool is small, making them ideal for storage as you can keep it in your glove box and pull it out and use it whenever needed. They provide these tools for car DIYers to get to their vehicle diagnostics using just their smartphone.

Recommendation: Actron CP9690 Elite

Actron CP9690 Elite review
Actron CP9690 Elite OBD2 Scanner
4.6
The CP9690 Elite AutoScanner Pro is for more advanced technicians and advanced DIYers.

Carista

Website: https://caristaapp.com/

Carista has the knowledge to spot any issues with your vehicle at any given time. With this device, you can skip the long lines and shock charges at the garage. Carista provides an app that communicates with manufacturer-specific modules and even fewer compatible with generic OBD adapters. They specialize in showing you the customization options the dealer does not want you to know about and giving you the power to change them.

Recommendation: Carista Bluetooth OBD2 Scanner

Carista Bluetooth OBD2 Scanner

epsoak epsom salt 5 lb

Rating

Price range: $19-$39

Step 2: What Type of Toyota Scan Tool is Suitable for You? 

OBD1 or OBD2 Scanner

So what you need to specify here is knowing if your vehicle runs on an OBD1 or OBD2 system. While some code readers will not be able to read OBD1 systems as it could be seen as an old or slightly outdated system, most scan tools on the market today are made for OBD2 vehicles. 

Not many OBD2 scanners can diagnose vehicles before 1996 and 80’s models. If your vehicle is running an OBD1 system, then Actron CP9690 Elite is built for you as this diagnostic tool covers both OBD2 and OBD1 cars. Also, it comes with OBDI Cables for 1984-1995 GM and Ford vehicles and 1989-1995 Chrysler and Toyota.

For OBD2 systemized vehicles, Autel AutoLink AL319 or Carista is an excellent choice.

Wired or Wireless Tool

Suppose you prefer turning your smartphone or tablet into a scanner and moving around while diagnosing the car. In that case, my advice is to buy a cheap Bluetooth or WIFI scanner like BAFX Products or Foseal WIFI adapter for iPhone iPad and Android. Otherwise, an affordable car code reader like Autel AL319 is just perfect for you.

BAFX Products review
Bafx Products OBDII Diagnostic Car Scanner
4.4
BAFX is so perfect for beginners as it is effortless to use.

Step 3: Compatibility and Vehicle Coverage

On the compatibility side, it is essential to know which vehicles each scanner is compatible with. For example, Carista only supports Tire Pressure Monitoring Sensors (TPMS), ABS/VSC/TRAC inspections, and Detailed ECU information. Unfortunately, Carista can only support these advanced systems on your Toyota, Lexus, or Scion. It is dependent on each car make and model as to which different features Carista supports.

Actron CP9690 Elite meets both OBD1 & OBD2 systems for Toyota. For OBD1 cars, you are a little limited as far as functions go, as you can only check codes and read LIVE engine data. For OBD2 vehicles, you can access and read enhanced codes such as SRS (Airbag), ABS (Anti-lock Braking System), RPM, Fuel Pressure, Coolant Temperature, etc.

Step 4: Pricing 

If you are a newcomer to car scanning tools and vehicle diagnostics, don’t worry, you do not have to spend too much. You would pay from 25 – 50 Dollars. Toyota Diagnostic Scanners surpassing this cost have increased advanced features that you simply will not use. Don’t waste your money on a more complex scanner; you may just get confused by all the additional functions.

For someone in the motor trade or an experienced DIYer, you will need something that can get into those functions and systems of further advancement, so you can expect to spend a little more. A scan tool will cost you anywhere between 50 and 200 dollars, depending on the diagnostics level you wish to achieve.

Foseal

epsoak epsom salt 5 lb

Rating

Price range: $09-$29

Step 5: Other Considerations

Is there anything else I should take into contemplation before deciding to buy one of these scanners?

* Why can Toyota, Lexus, and Scion all Use The Same Scanner?

This is because Toyota, an automotive provider, produces vehicles of five different brands. These brands include Toyota, Ranz, Lexus, Hino, and Daihatsu, and Scion is a discontinued marque of Toyota that debuted in 2003. On February 3, 2016, Toyota announced that it would cease the Scion brand in August 2016, with selected models rebranded as Toyota vehicles for the 2017 model year. However, Scion was discontinued, which does not mean they are not a part of the family, as, of course, some of their vehicles are still on the roads today. So long story short, they all support and use similar parts and systems. 

*Connectivity

Something to bring up to thought is the connectivity of the device towards the vehicle. Would you prefer to have a cabled or wireless scanner? That being said, while there are wireless scanners, most of the OBD1 scan tools are corded, like Actron or Autel. So if you have an OBD1 systemized vehicle, you might not have as much room for flexibility. 

As for the wireless scanning tools, Carista, Foseal, and BAFX as examples, they sometimes come with different variables. Some are connected via Bluetooth, and others are connected via Wi-Fi. If your Wi-Fi goes down, that could be a problem, especially if you are in the middle of acting like an ECU update. If you’ve got a strong Wi-Fi connection, you should not run into any problems. 

* Techstream Software

An additional aspect to take into consideration is, do the devices have access to Toyota’s Techstream software? – A diagnosis software designed specifically for Toyota Lexus or Scion vehicles.

Toyota developed Techstream for internal use and customers who want to be a little more hands-on when dealing with their car.

To diagnose issues with your vehicle, Toyota Techstream is a software designed to connect and interact with your car’s internal computer. It will read the sensors and alert you of any errors it finds by providing you with error codes. Aside from the trouble codes, you can also access and modify your vehicle settings, turning certain features on or off.

Read more about Toyota Techstream software HERE

Read more:

Best OBD2 Scanners Review 2021 [with Buying Guide]

Best OBD2 Scanners for Honda review 2021

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