Vehicle Tracking with Cell Phone, OBD 2 + ELM 327

It is possible to make the reading of the error codes, turn off the light injection and make diagnostics of defects of your car using just your mobile phone and a OBD2 connector, called ELM 327. OBD2 stands for “On Board Diagnostic System” or System of diagnosis involved and is the main form used today in day to find out defects in the vehicles.

Just make the tracking of the vehicle and the central electronic of the vehicle will inform several potential problems with the sensors and electronic components. In addition, it is possible to infer other operation issues from the readings of the sensors existing in the vehicle.

In this article we talk about the app OBD Car Doctor which allows you to communicate with the central electronics of the car using the Blueetooth and an OBD connector 2 as the ELM 327.

The OBD Car Doctor can be downloaded for Android from the app store and is only 1 of the many apps available to perform this task. It is very complete and has a paid version and another free, that was used in the video which illustrates this article.

The connector ELM 327 can be purchased for amounts from 5 dollars on these chinese sites such as Deal Extreme and Ali Express. I prefer to buy one that cost $ 12 because I saw that he had good recommendations from other customers who have purchased previously. The connectors OBD2 cheaper had reviews on these sites or there were many complaints about the quality of the product. Choose one that suits your needs. In general, the compatibility with the models of the cars need to be taken into account when setting the app to be used, because the connections OBD II are standardized in the vehicle more new. I’m not going into details because I don’t have a complete list with all the variations of interfaces, connections and protocols. In any case, as the objective is merely to facilitate the obtaining of information about the vehicle, you may want to search if the connector to be purchased is compatible with your car.

The OBD Car Doctor in its free version already has many interesting features as you can see in the video that illustrates this text. And can read multiple sensors and information from your car and, in the paid version, show several of them at the same time on the screen, which is something that I would like to have done in the video in question, but only found out after.

How to Connect to the ELM 327 on the Bluetooth OBD Car Doctor

The most difficult part of making all of this work was to sync the Bluetooth with the ELM 327. Follow the steps below to make the ELM 327 work

  • install OBD Car Doctor on your mobile
  • connect the ELM 327 in port OBD2 of your car. ( every car has this port in a different location )
  • turn the key to turn on the panel ( I did this by not being sure if it is mandatory )
  • turn on the bluetooth of your mobile phone
  • pair with the OBDII device that will appear in the list of devices. The PIN is 0000 or 1234
  • open the OBD Car Doctor to authorize the use of Bluetooth
  • the program will connect to the ELM 327 and will begin to test each protocol
  • wait, this will take several minutes. ( it took 12 minutes for me to work )
  • when you connect, you will see the options for sensors and information ready to be chosen ( see the video )

After the connection has been made, you can start the car and go out driving around and seeing how the information from each sensor will vary. The OBD Car Doctor shows including several interesting graphics with the information that the central electronics your car has. For those who like technology and cars, it is something amusing.

Obviously the interpretation of the video information for the purposes of maintenance and repair of the vehicle shall be made pro is a trained professional automotive maintenance: a trusted mechanic. In any case it is very good to have access to the data reported by the car to facilitate the conversation with the mechanic and help in the diagnosis that states the “symptoms” of the problems. Do not make interventions or mechanical changes to your car without the proper knowledge since you can put your life and the lives of others at risk. Go to a workshop and bring the information that you get, do not use them as a basis for maintenance if you are not sure what you are doing.

Remember to search if your car model supports the protocol and the connection OBD2 before you buy the connector ELM 327!

If you still have doubts about doing the OBD Car Doctor and the ELM 327 to work on your car, leave a comment on this article or preferably in the video!