Smartphone Car Diagnostics: Check Your Check Engine Light in the Garage

Posted 9/26/16

The check engine light comes on. You check, and what a relief, the engine is still there. Most of the time, this is how the check engine light plays out and that’s just fine. Perhaps it’s a minor emissions problem you won’t really have to worry about until it comes time to pass your smog test. Other times, that same light is an indication your car is about to have a heart attack.

A check engine light could mean you have an engine coil that is failing. Continue to drive the car and you could ruin your catalytic converter, which will cost you at least $1,000.

Technology to the Rescue

So should you take your car into your local Cincinnati automobile shop just to be sure? You could, but you also may get away with just using your phone. BlueDriver is a professional quality tool that lets you run your own car diagnostics using a smartphone, available in Android or iOS.

Knowing When to Call the Professionals

Simply plug it into your car’s On Board Diagnostic Port, fire it up and run your own diagnostics. You can do this in your garage and find out if the problem is minor or serious. Then you’ll know whether it’s time to call up your Cincinnati car mechanic and say, “Hey, when can you fix my BMW?”

Our Recommended BMW Scheduled Maintenance

We don’t care how new or old your BMW is: for the best performance, follow its scheduled maintenance like clockwork. The manufacturer recommends certain repairs and maintenance according to how many miles you’ve driven and how old the car is. Following this schedule will deliver optimal performance, not to mention longevity and in the long run value. Every year, or 10,000 miles, change the oil and filter, inspect the brakes, have windshields and windshield wiper fluid replaced. In the first 30,000 miles, and then every 60,000 miles after that, inspect the power steering, rear axle and transmission. Check the steering system and brake lines for leaks.