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Old 11-30-2014
DrewCfromSC's Avatar
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Location: West Columbia
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new guy. 98 code reader tool?

hello, new guy here. 98 ranger 4.0 has 105,00 miles, ive had since 2001. Starting to think of upgrades soon but looking for the scanner code reader tool. OBD2 or something like that? What is the easiest to use? Thank you.
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Old 11-30-2014
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All vehicles made/sold in the US/Canada from 1996 and up were required to be OBD II(2) compliant, some switched from OBD I(1) to OBD II earlier but '96 was the requirement year.

So any OBD II reader/scanner will be fine for your '98 Ford
Less expensive ones just read codes, more expensive ones can do more.

Google: BlueTooth OBDII

These are kind of neat, they plug in to the OBD port on the vehicle, they get power from that connector.
Then you can read codes and watch live data while driving using a smartphone or laptop with bluetooth.
And they are not expensive.
But check the price of the APP before buying the OBD plug in, some charge alot for the APP and less for the OBD unit.

OBDII readers/scanners can be moved from vehicle to vehicle, that's the point of standardizing everything to OBDII, so whatever you get will work on any vehicle '96 and up.
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Old 11-30-2014
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Newnan Georgia
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Like RonD said theres a whole range of prices/features just depends on what you plan to use it for. Ive got a little $30 from snap-on thats done everything I've ever needed it reads/clears codes checks emission readiness and even gives a decent live data readout for diagnostics. Its a good starting point but you can spend as much as $1000 for top of the line some are like mini computers snapon has one running windows xp and can even refresh the entire PCM. Id sit down and determine what you need/want and go from there. The bluetooth ones are pretty cool I've got one setup with my old laptop thats running linux OS which has a lot of free/cheap apps to communicate with it and i also have an app on my android but its pricey $60 if i recall.
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Old 12-01-2014
DrewCfromSC's Avatar
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thank you for the fat replies.
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Old 12-01-2014
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I recently purchased a OBDII code reader off of ebay for 30 bucks shipped. It was an auction type sale. They are out there.

As RonD pointed out, the bluetooth ones are nice, but be careful on the app that's required to use them; they can be pricey.
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Old 12-03-2014
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Pekin
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I bought one a couple years ago for about 40 bucks shipped on ebay. Never ever had any issues with limited functionality. Reads codes with brief descriptions, clears CELs, live data, etc etc. With this tool alone you can do all kinds of diagnosing you wouldn't ever have thought of. I watched my fuel trims to determine if my lean codes were caused by a dirty MAF or a vacuum leak. Using the data I was able to determine that my MAF needed cleaning, so i bought a 6 dollar can of MAF sensor cleaner and cleaned her up real good, cleared the code, and have driven over 400 miles without it returning yet.
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