Tool Review: Innova CarScan 31703
Innova’s CarScan model 31703 is compatible with OBD2 and OBD1 systems (also known as OBD-II and OBD-I), and also allows diagnostic operations for SRS and ABS.
Features and functions
Here’s a list of the features and functions of the Innova CarScan 31703:
• Retrieve enhanced and transmission diagnostic codes in all OBD2 (1996 and later) and most popular OBD1 (1981 to 1995) vehicles.
• Read and erase ABS and SRS coverage for most 1996 and later Chrysler, GM, Ford, Toyota and Honda vehicles.
• 10 modes of OBD2 coverage including bi-directional EVAP.
• Displays, records and plays-back OBD2 live data graphing.
• Automatic refresh updates data every 30 seconds while connected to the vehicle (allowing an easy way to verify repair completion).
• Unique/patented all-in-one backlit screen display and three-color LED display for quick state emissions readiness check.
• Professional shop software to print and manage vehicle diagnostic reports.
• Includes 15 inspection maintenance monitor coverage (to verify that repairs have been completed and that the vehicle has run through its complete drive cycle).
• Shows generic (PO, P2, P3 and UO) manufacturer-specific (P1, P3 and U1), global, pending and permanent codes as well as the code which caused the freeze frame data to be set.
• Displays freeze frame data that displays a multiple P.I.D. snapshot of vehicle condition when the code was set.
• Fully Internet updateable and upgradeable for future year, make and model.
• Memory/battery backup for off-car review and analysis.
• Includes access to pro.innova.com RepairSolutions (trouble code definitions, full diagnostic report, probable causes, recall information, TSBs, most likely fix for DTCs and more.
• Full one-year warranty.
• Dedicated ASE bi-lingual toll-free technical support line (Mon.-Sat., 6 a.m. – 6 p.m., PST)
• GM (1982 to 1993 and some 1994 to 1995 models).
• Ford/Lincoln/Mercury (1983 to 1995. models with EEC-IV systems).
• Toyota/Lexus (1991 to 1995).
• Honda (1991 to 1995).
• Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth (1984 to 1995)
• Jeep (1993 to 1995).
• Performs KOEO, KOER, timing check, cylinder balance test, output state test and wiggle test.
Cables and adapters
The OBD2 cable is a healthy six feet long. In addition, a six foot extension cable is also provided (featuring male/male pin connectors) for use with any of the OBD1 adapters.
A USB cable is also provided (mini USB at the scan tool and “regular”-size USB at the PC side).
The Innova website is extremely helpful. A full DTC library is available, making it a piece of cake to quickly and easily obtain DTC definitions. Simply enter the DTC number and vehicle make, and presto — DTC definition(s) pop up in an instant. One of other very helpful tools on the site is a vehicle-specific DLC locator. Type in the year, make and model, and a clear illustration pops up showing the exact location of the vehicle’s DLC connector. Other features include tips on the most likely cause of a DTC, recommended fixes, and more. This is a website that is actually useful, without the complexity and navigational difficulties often found on so many other sites. This site is actually user-friendly.
RepairSolutions is a Web-based service created to assist technicians in quickly and accurately diagnosing and repairing today’s vehicles. RepairSolutions allows you to view, save and email the diagnostic data retrieved from the vehicle, as well as providing access to an extensive knowledge database.
Once the scan tool has been used to retrieve data, you can connect the tool to your PC using the supplied USB cable. Your default web browser launches automatically and connects to the www.pro.innova.com website. The diagnostic tool automatically downloads and installs the software necessary to support communication between the diagnostic tool and the website.
At this point, you simply need to log-in to your RepairSolutions account using your registered email address and password.
Scan tool’s button legend
Upper right (power/link button): This is the power on/off switch
Lower right “LD/M”: Allows return to the OBD2 DTC screen after enhanced mode; or moving to enhanced mode from DTC screen
Bottom center (“down” arrow): Down-scroll button
Lower left “DTC/FF”: This is the DTC (Diagnostic Trouble Code) and freeze frame switch.
Upper left (eraser icon): This allows you to quickly erase DTCs
Top center (“up” arrow): Up button.
Center button (with left-hand arrow): This is the “enter/select” button command.
The scan tool’s control buttons provide a nice tactile contact, and button operation seemed crisp and immediate with no vagueness. The backlit screen is very easy to read (no need to strain your eyes). My only suggestion (and it’s not a complaint) is that I would prefer text on the erase button (the word “ERASE” instead of the rectangular eraser icon). After all, if you can understand how to use this type of tool for diagnostics, it follows that you should be able to read the English language. But, that’s a very minor issue, considering that the use of icons has surpassed the use of words in industries across the board in recent years.
The scan tool’s housing and internal construction appears to be fairly robust. Just as an experiment, I dropped the unit three times onto a concrete floor (from arm-length height), and it never even whimpered. It didn’t power-down and it continued to function normally as if nothing had happened. ●
Manufacturer contact information
Innova (Equus Products Inc.)
17352 Von Karman Ave.
Irvine, CA 92614
For another Tool Review, see: Phoenix Systems injector