A few days ago we launched the updated OBD Auto Doctor software. This time our main focus was in calculated performance parameters such as Engine Torque, Engine Horsepower and Turbo Boost Pressure.
You can now measure the performance of your car by monitoring these new sensors in real time. Read further to get insight into the details.
Engine Power or Horsepower
Engine power (or horsepower) can be estimated quite well using vehicle speed and its change over very short period of time. The total weight of the vehicle is also needed for valid results.
OBD Auto Doctor measures the engine power at the wheels. This is not the same as at the flywheel. Therefore, if the vehicle speed doesn’t change, the power will show zero. The horsepower will be greater than zero only when the vehicle is accelerating.
The software will also take power loss due to drag into consideration when calculating the power. An average drag coefficient and vehicle frontal area are used.
You can set the vehicle weight in the app settings. To get the most accurate weight, drive your car to a weightbridge. You could also estimate the total weight by using manufacturer defined weight added with the passenger weight, fuel weight plus any extra weight included in the vehile.
Torque is calculated from the engine power and RPM. With these two pieces of information, the torque can be estimated quite accurately. Torque is measured at the wheels just like the engine power.
Since torque is using engine power for the calculation, the vehicle weight is a factor in the calculation. Remember to set the correct weight!
Boost pressure value yields from the intake manifold absolute pressure. Barometric pressure is also taken into consideration. Now, the vehicle is required to support MAP (manifold absolute pressure) in order for the boost pressure to appear as supported. Barometric pressure is optional. The default pressure value at sea level is used unless the car provides support for the actual barometric pressure.
Negative pressure values represent vacuum. Positive values are boosted by a turbocharger or supercharger.
Among the new calculated performance parameters, we also added more.
The software has now support for all Mode $06 scaling IDs. The latest OBD2 standard version added 12 new identifiers. OBD Auto Doctor implements now all the new IDs in addition to the old ones.
If you are using the desktop software, download the latest version from the download page. The updated mobile apps can be found from the approriate app stores using your phone.
OBD2 Trouble Codes or Diagnostic Trouble Codes are defined by SAE (Society of Automobile Engineers). SAE is the organization that specifies the OBD2 standards. These include the one that defines all the generic Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs). Car manufacturers follow these definitions when they assign DTCs for detected errors.
J2012 is the document that defines the OBD2 Trouble Codes. The standard hasn’t been updated for a while but few months ago it got a new revision. The newest revision contained a bunch of new DTCs. These DTCs take new technology such as hybrid vehicles into better consideration, for example.
OBD Auto Doctor contains now all the possible generic OBD2 Trouble Codes that exists. We added total of 3899 new DTCs to the software.
The software contains total of 18193 Trouble Codes. The latest PC & Mac software as well as the Android and iOS apps have all these codes included.
The codes include:
Powertrain: 6631 codes
Network & Vehicle Integration: 1017 codes
Chassis: 363 codes
Body: 165 codes
Rest of the codes are manufacturer specific trouble codes
Multiple Freeze Frames
The latest desktop software version added support for multiple Freeze Frames too. Typically, only one freeze frame is saved. But with newer cars, it’s possible to store multiple freeze frames; one for each trouble code. The software will now read all available frames.
This is a great addition if the vehicle has more than one issue present. You get details from each issue, not only the first one.
Our OBD diagnostic software for macOS, Windows and Linux got new version update yesterday. Along other changes, the version 3.1 includes important improvements for Bluetooth connectivity.
OBD Auto Doctor mobile apps have included support for Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) dongles already. Now, we are happy to provide the support on all supported platforms. This includes support on Windows, Mac OS X / macOS and Linux. The selected BLE dongles work now with OBD Auto Doctor regardless the computer or phone you use.
BLE support on Windows
Windows 8 is the first Windows version to support Bluetooth LE. This means that you need to have Windows 8 or newer to take advantage of the new feature.
Before OBD Auto Doctor can connect to the BLE dongle, you need to pair the dongle in the system settings. In Windows 10, you can find Bluetooth settings by ‘Settings’ -> ‘Devices’ -> ‘Bluetooth’. Make sure you have paired the dongle successfully before launching OBD Auto Doctor. OBD Auto Doctor will now find the device and take care of the rest.
BLE support on Mac OS X
OBD Auto Doctor can use Bluetooth LE on all supported OS X versions. Remember to check that your Mac has Bluetooth 4.0 hardware included. Macs started to have the hardware around 2011-2012. No pairing or other manual actions are required outside of the software to use these dongles.
BLE support on Linux
Bluez is the library in Linux that provides Bluetooth support. You need to have version of Bluez that has the support included. Check your distribution for more details.
Scanning BLE devices needs special rights. You can use superuser or root for that. Or you can give the application the needed permissions just once:
After running the previous command, you can run obdautodoctor as normal user. Notice that some Linux distros require that you need to be part of the dialout group to able to use Bluetooth. To add an user to the group, issue:
sudo adduser username dialout
If you install the software using the .deb package, these actions will be taken care of automatically for you.
Our car diagnostic software for PC and Mac was updated about a month ago. The latest OBD Auto Doctor is now labeled as version 3. It took few weeks to publish this blog post. But it’s never too late, right? Let’s go through the change log for the update.
Improved User Interface
The new version has redesigned and improved user interface. This is of course the main visible change for you. We clarified the views with more white space and trimmed down the titles. We also reorganized the views under new categories. The new categories are summary, trouble codes, diagnostics, monitoring and extras. The categories have new flat style icons too. These changes make it easier for you to find the stuff you are looking for. We also added help texts to the views. They provide you helpful details about the information that the views provide. Just move your mouse over the small white question mark to get the hints.
On-board System, Test or Component activation
The software has now support for OBD2 mode 8. The mode 8 is the on-board system, test or component activation service. This service allows bi-directional communication to start or perform specific tests. This is different from the most OBD2 services because they just read information from the car. In that sense, this service or mode is a rather powerful tool.
The current version of the OBD2 standard defines only two tests. OBD Auto Doctor supports these both:
Evaporative system leak test
Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) Regeneration
It’s expected that more tests are added to the standard in the upcoming updates.
Sensor Graph Grid
The graph grid is the newest addition to the monitoring tools. You can now track up to four different sensors side by side with the Sensor Graph Grid. Each sensor has separate graph with it’s own scale. This makes it easier to interpret the data in some cases.
We did a lot of other smaller changes for the software too. The following list highlights the most important ones.
Increased number of the simultaneous sensors in the graph. You can now update up to 6 sensors at the same time. We also improved the automatic scaling of the graph scales to make it easier for you to interpret the values.
Added support for the Readiness Monitor status for the current drive cycle. This is in addition to the monitor status since the trouble codes have been cleared and the MIL has been reset.
Verified support for the new Windows 10. We also tested the OS X El Capitan preview version for possible compatibility issues.
Improved internationalization with all the strings updated by native speakers. Because of high maintenance work we had to remove support for some languages with fewer users.
Improved functionality with some clone adapters. The problematic adapters reporting version 2.1 will work now too. We do recommend though that you use a high quality genuine ELM327 adapter. Some clone adapters have serious issues delivering data from the car.
OBD Auto Doctor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux was previously updated to version 2.0. The new version contains a lot improvements. Some of them are visible to you but there are several improvements done under the hood, too. The latest version has now better support for the new Windows 8.1 and Mac OS X 10.10 Yosemite operating systems.
One of the additions to the software was the data export capabilities. You will be now able to export Diagnostic Trouble Codes and Freeze Frame data to a text file. You can then easily share the file, or archive it for documenting the history of your car.
Moreover, you can export the sensor live data to a *.csv file. The csv file can be opened with spreadsheet software such as Microsoft Excel, Google Sheets or LibreOffice Calc. You can record a whole drive cycle and review the results afterward to detect some abnormalities with the sensors of your car. You can even draw a custom graph with these external tools from the data you collected with OBD Auto Doctor.
We did an example drive with 2014 Audi A3 1.4 TFSI and recorded the car data during it. The granularity of the data is rather coarse because we recorded 28 sensors simultaneously. Dropping the amount of different sensors will improve the granularity significantly. That’s because it leaves more time to update the interesting sensors more frequently.
OBD2 data graph exported from LibreOffice Calc
Click the image for full size.
OBD2 data graph exported from Google Sheets
Click the image for full size.
Other new features
In addition to the export functions, the latest version added support for 16 new OBD2 parameters. It’s also now possible to graph more than one sensor or parameter simultaneously with the oscilloscope. Last, OBD Auto Doctor user interface was translated to Polish.
You can download the latest version of OBD Auto Doctor from the download page.
New version of our car diagnostic software for Windows and Linux is available for download. We recommend that you update your existing installation to this one. The new version contains several improvements and new features compared to the previous version. The following list contains the most important additions.
The release date of the next version of OBD Auto Doctor for Windows and Linux is coming closer. We would like to give you a short preview of the most important feature addition made to the software: OBD data graph aka oscilloscope.
With the OBD oscilloscope, you can visualize sensor value changes easily. Graphs are great tools because they communicate information visually. Even large amount of data, or fast changing data can be interpreted much better when expressed as a graph. Graphs help you to identify sudden spikes and trends in the data.
In addition to visualizing the numeric OBD data, our software enables you to save the graphs to your computer as image files. You can share the images with your mechanics or friends, or you can post them to automotive forums when asking repair advice from fellow DIYers. The screenshots in this post are saved by OBD Auto Doctor.
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Try it for free
Try OBD Auto Doctor for free. Download the software from here and start communicating with your car!