Diagnosing problems with your BMW is impossible unless you use a specific diagnostic BMW scan tool.
BMWs have an unusual configuration in the OBD-II serial parts. Thus, they don’t work consistently with a non-BMW scan tool.
The OBD-II system gives extra information that can be read by a BMW diagnostic tool that has the specific software.
These are considered to be the best on the market based on their Amazon ratings and customer reviews.
Let’s see why they are recommended!
Want to read more about the whole 7 Scan Tools in the list?
Let’s dive into the details now and learn why these are the best BMW Scan Tools.
- 1 7 Best BMW Scan Tools Review
- 1.1 #1. FOXWELL NT510 Automotive Scanner for BMW cars
- 1.2 #2. MAOZUA C310+ BMW OBD Scan Tool
- 1.3 #3. Latest C310+ BMW Car Code Reader
- 1.4 #4. Original Carly for BMW Wifi OBD Adapter
- 1.5 #5. AUTOPHIX 7810 All System BMW Diagnostic Tool
- 1.6 #6. FOXWELL NT520 PRO: BMW Scan Tool for 3 SERIES E46
- 1.7 #7. AUTOPHIX ES910 BMW Diagnostic OBD2 Scanner
- 1.8 The bottom line
- 2 Best BMW Code Reader and Reset Tool Comparison Chart
- 3 BMW Scan Tool Buying Guide
7 Best BMW Scan Tools Review
#1. FOXWELL NT510 Automotive Scanner for BMW cars
The NT510 is a standalone, feature-rich BMW scan tool that is available at a reasonable price.
It is simple to use, user-friendly and can give you access to BMW-specific information.
Since it is a handheld unit, there is no need for a laptop. Therefore, in the long run, this Foxwell BMW code reader saves hassle and money!
The NT510 BMW code reader is compatible with various BMW models ranging from older 1987-1996 versions to the newer ones. It can also be used for vehicles by Rolls Royce and Mini.
The versatility of this tool is possible because its unique technology allows particular tests and functions.
Pros and Cons of FOXWELL NT510 BMW car diagnostic tool
- Easy to use and versatile
- EOBD compliant
- Shows live sensor data
- Accurate at diagnosing problems
- You must pay extra for full support for non-BMW vehicles
- Not very user-friendly
- Does not cover all the models it claims
Who is it for?
If you want to save money while diagnosing problems with your car, then this is a suitable tool. It has advanced features such as manufacturer-specific error codes and data stream viewer, making it an ideal tool for BMW owners.
Moreover, it comes with a range of special functions that make this tool a must-have for those wanting to service their own BMWs. These include oil light information, battery registration, and brake de-activation.
#2. MAOZUA C310+ BMW OBD Scan Tool
This BMW code reader is an inexpensive tool that is suitable for all BMW cars manufactured after 2000. On one hand, it is not as feature-rich as other models are.
This BMW code reader is compatible with a number of BMW models ranging from 2001 to 2017.
The list of series supported includes:
- 1 series
- 3 series
- 5 series
- 6 series
- 7 series
- X series
- Z series
The car models from 1997-2000 are compatible with this BMW code reader; however, a 20 pin adapter will be needed.
Pros and Cons of MAOZUA C310+ auto Diagnostic tool for BMW
- 8-inch large LCD display
- Efficient engine oil reset
- The handy tool which is quite light on the pocket
- Provides in-depth codes
- Doesn’t read active codes for all models
- Doesn’t provide the description for a part number
- Does not auto-detect the car
Who is it for?
The Maozua BMW code reader is suitable for all cars that support it. So, if you have a BMW model compatible with this tool and you don’t want to spend too much, then this is a good choice.
It can read and clear BMW-specific fault codes. So, in case you are on a tight budget, the C310+ is an affordable option.
#3. Latest C310+ BMW Car Code Reader
The BMW scan tool by Vgate is a tool which reads as well as clears trouble codes. It is a versatile tool which displays live data stream, vehicle version information, as well as graphs.
Moreover, it also allows engine oil reset and clear adaptation.
Not only is it portable and easy to use, but it also has a 2.8” LCD display screen. Thus, the C310+ BMW code reader is quite a handy tool.
C310+ BMW code reader supports BMW model manufactured between 1997 and 2014. It is suitable for the body, chassis, and drive; the whole system.
However, the models manufactured before 2000 need the 20 pin connector test.
Pros and Cons of Latest C310+
- Supports English as well as German
- Easy to carry and operate
- Efficient diagnostic tool
- Helps save a significant amount of money
- Helps clear the codes for almost all most common issues
- Doesn’t register a new BMW battery
- Can’t code injectors on engines
Who is it for?
The tool is dedicated for all BMW car models from series ranging from 1997 to 2014. Since it is designed with easy handheld and easy to operate, it is suitable for technicians, DIYers, and auto shop owners.
#4. Original Carly for BMW Wifi OBD Adapter
The Carly BMW Wifi Adapter lets you connect an app installed on your phone with your car’s computer. While there is no adapter with the pro app, you can still view the error codes.
However, once you get the upgrade for the app Carly for BMW coding, you can reset the error codes. At the same time, you can also get access to advanced functionalities and diagnostic data as well.
The Original Carly BMW scan tool is suitable for various models. It is compatible with the following models:
- BMW models starting from 1996
- Toyota models starting from 2005
- Renault models starting from 2004
- Mercedes models starting from 2004
- Porsche models starting from 2001
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A video of Carly for BMW
Pros and Cons of Carley BMW
- Commendable usability which makes it easy to use
- Supported by frequent app updates
- Offers new battery registration
- Safe and easy way to code your BMW
- Allows you to read and clear codes from various systems
- You need to pay the pro version to benefit fully
- Even after purchasing Carly pro, there are numerous in-app purchases
- Can only view the error codes unless you buy the app’s pro version
Who is it for?
If you’re good with technology and want to see what’s going on with your car on the go, this is the ideal choice. Instead of using rubber buttons, you can use your phone’s interface. Since this BMW scan tool comes with an adapter and app both, access to data is more convenient. In fact, you can email the result to yourself too.
So, if you need a budget-friendly wireless scanner which connects to your smartphone, this is an ideal choice.
#5. AUTOPHIX 7810 All System BMW Diagnostic Tool
The Autophix 7810 is a professional BMW scan tool that supports various functions such as EPB, CBS reset, F Chassis, and battery management.
Apart from being compatible with many BMW models, it can also work for vehicles from 1998 to 2017. It can work for Rolls Royce and Mini vehicles that have the OBDII 16PIN.
Pros and Cons of Autophix 7810
- Relatively straightforward and simple to use
- Quite affordable
- The long cord facilitates ease of use
- The large screen makes it easy to read the text
- Very fast at switching modes
- Can’t perform advanced functions at times
- Doesn’t always detects the car
Who is it for?
The BMW troubleshooting tool is ideal for both shop owners as well as vehicle enthusiasts. It allows to run faster and accurate diagnostics, thus helping you save both time and money.
#6. FOXWELL NT520 PRO: BMW Scan Tool for 3 SERIES E46
It has various features as well including access to body systems, chassis, and powertrain. Similarly, it also offers advanced functions like programming, adaption, and actuation.
The NT520 BMW scan tool is compatible with both OBD I and OBD II vehicles.
Primarily, it is made for the BMW 3 series.
It provides OE-level diagnoses for various car models and supports commonly required service features as well.
Pros and Cons of FOXWELL NT520
- Can be kept in the vehicle because of its ideal size
- Large, TFT screen
- Fault code definitions are shown on screen
- Works well for coding injectors
- Easy to use
- You must pay extra to use it for other brands
Who is it for?
A cost-effective tool, this BMW diagnostic tool delivers OE-level diagnosis for all electronic systems. Thus, it is ideal for technicians, small garages, specialized garages, independent repairs, and car enthusiasts.
#7. AUTOPHIX ES910 BMW Diagnostic OBD2 Scanner
The Autophix S910 is another OBD II BMW scan tool that lets owners read as well as clear fault codes from various systems like IHKA, DDE, electronic parking brake, and ABS.
The tool works for all BMW models from 2003 onwards. It will also work for a few BMW models made between 1998 and 2001. So, make sure you check your vehicle coverage before you purchase this BMW scan tool.
Pros and Cons of AUTOPHIX ES910
- Allows new battery registration and programming (limited)
- Works for Rolls-Royce and MINI too
- Allows to stream and graph data
- Easy to use
- Available at a reasonable price
- Incapable of managing the battery
- The screen is a little small, making it difficult to see
- Incompatible with Mac computers
Who is it for?
If you are looking for a decent BMW scan tool, then the Autophix ES910 is a good option. It allows you to read and clear fault codes from many systems and is easy to use too.
Choose the BMW scan tool you think is right. You can pick an expensive tool which allows programming, or you can use a simple and affordable one. The bottom line is, a BMW scan tool can help save hassle, money, and time too. You won’t have to take your BMW to the dealership and pay extra to know the problem.
Not sure which BMW scanner is best for your vehicle?
Don’t worry!! Below are the 3 out of the 7 best choices that I’ve picked out for you:
Best BMW Code Reader and Reset Tool Comparison Chart
|Best of the Best||Best Value||Also Great|
4.1 / 5
3.9 / 5
3.6 / 5
|Item Weight||1.35 pounds||15.2 ounces||2.08 ounces|
|7.9 x 1.5 x 3.9 inches||9.2 x 2.4 x 5.7 inches||3.5 x 1 x 1.8 inches|
|Engine Oil Light Reset||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Support I/M Readiness||N/A||N/A||N/A|
BMW Scan Tool Buying Guide
You must buy a BMW scan tool that accesses the main control system of a vehicle to diagnose trouble codes. It must also be able to perform advanced functions as well.
Not all BMW scan tools work for all models of BMW cars. For instance, some of the recent tools can’t clear or reset the codes for BMW models from the year 2000. Therefore, first read the compatibility of the tool first before you purchase it.
- Basic functions
It should read and clear trouble codes and perform special functions as well. These include I/M readiness, O2 sensors test, text live data, and graph live data.
- Advanced Functions – Multi-system scan
It should be able to diagnose trouble codes from various systems like transmission, Airbag, ABS, and engine. Additional features to look out for include oil service reset, coding and reprogramming, DPF, SAS, and EPB.
While some BMW scan tools are quite expensive, you can find ones that are cheap too. How much you should spend on this tool comes down to your budget and how frequently you’ll be using it. If you have more frequent use, then you can invest in it. Otherwise, a cheap one that has all the features you need will work too.