An INNOVA scan tool gives you the power to make at-home automotive diagnosis and repairs. If you’re tired of wasting your money at the mechanic or dealership, you’ll appreciate having one at your disposal.
In this article, we’ll look at the top options and tell you which INNOVA OBD2 scan tool is the best match for each driver type. No matter your level of experience or the type of car you drive, one of the tools on this list is sure to be a perfect match.
Best INNOVA scan tools: Comparison chart
|BEST OVERALL||RUNNER UP||GREAT PICK|
INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310
|Item Weight||1.35 pounds||6.9 ounces||14.6 ounces|
|Product Dimensions||10.4 x 7.3 x 2.3 inches||7.52 x 3.43 x 2.32 inches||11.02 x 7.4 x 2.2 inches|
|Summary||The robust functionality of the INNOVA 6030P makes it a top choice for beginning DIYers.||This streamlined OBD2 code reader is ideal for everyday drivers, with a simple operation and access to both fault codes and smog check data.||With 3-system diagnosis and maintenance functions, experienced home mechanics will find the 5310 is their best option.|
|Pros||Runs all 10 modes of OBD2. 3 LED code severity indicator. Offer wide vehicle compatibility. It also supports ABS and battery diagnostics.||Works on hybrids as well as gas and diesel engines. Has at-a-glance smog check. Pretty simple to learn and use. Can reads and clears codes from the engine and ABS.||Reads and clears codes from the engine, ABS, and SRS. Great LED smog test display. Provide accurate readings of live module data and oil reset capability. Battery and alternator testing included.|
|Cons||No maintenance functions. Moreover, ABS diagnostics limited to US vehicles.||Doesn’t show live data and there is no Bluetooth connectivity.||Battery check won’t work on hybrids. Besides, its has more complex interface.|
Table of Contents
- 1 INNOVA brand introduction
- 2 Why buy an INNOVA scan tool?
- 3 Types of INNOVA scan tools
- 4 Price range of INNOVA scan tools
- 5 Tips and buying guides
- 6 Best INNOVA scan tools reviews
- 6.1 INNOVA 6030P OBD2 scanner
- 6.2 INNOVA 3020RS OBDII scan tool
- 6.3 INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310 OBD2 scanner
- 6.4 INNOVA 3123 GM OBD1 scan tool
- 6.5 INNOVA CarScan Pro 5610 OBDII scanner
- 6.6 INNOVA 3120e OBD2 scan tool
- 6.7 INNOVA 3145 OBD1 code reader
- 6.8 INNOVA 6100P OBD2 diagnostic tool
- 6.9 INNOVA 3040RS OBDII code reader
- 6.10 INNOVA 3160g Pro OBD2 scan tool
- 7 Recommendation: Top 3 INNOVA scanners
- 8 FAQs
- 9 Final thoughts
INNOVA brand introduction
INNOVA is the number 1 brand in the United States for automotive diagnostic equipment. Made and designed in the US, their tools bring state of the art technology to drivers of all experience levels with a range of easy to use, durable scanners. Since ASE-certified mechanics back their technical support, you can trust INNOVA scan tools to provide the accurate vehicle information you need.
Why buy an INNOVA scan tool?
With all the brands out there selling diagnostic equipment, why should you buy an INNOVA OBD2 scan tool? The short answer is because they’re some of the most reliable and versatile OBD2 scanners on the market. Here are some benefits you’ll enjoy with one of these handy devices at your disposal:
- Spend less at the mechanic. Diagnostic codes can sometimes trigger from very simple issues that anyone can fix at home. Even if you need a professional for repairs, knowing the exact issue going in will make sure you only pay for the services you need.
- Gain insights into your engine performance. INNOVA OBDII scan tools do more than just read trouble codes. The ability to read live data from on-board modules gives you a deeper understanding of your vehicle’s health, key for maintaining it, and preventing issues.
- Knowledgeable tech support. The support staff at INNOVA are certified experts in automotive repair. If you ever have an issue or question, you can count on them to walk you through the solution.
Types of INNOVA scan tools
- OBD1 code readers. These low-cost and straightforward automotive scanners are designed to work with older vehicles (roughly 1982-1995). They read trouble codes and enable you to run self-tests on the engine to troubleshoot issues.
- OBD2 code readers. OBD2 code readers are similar to their OBD1 counterparts but designed for vehicles made in 1996 and later. Most offer universal compatibility and may also include extra features like live data reading and smog checks.
- Hand-held diagnostic scanners. The most common type of INNOVA scanner, these tools go beyond the capabilities of basic code readers. They have more robust OBD2 diagnostics and also scan non-OBD2 systems, like the battery or anti-lock brakes.
- Wi-Fi/Bluetooth enabled scanners. Adding wireless connectivity to a hand-held scanner makes updates and sending data more accessible. They still connect to the OBD2 port in your vehicle but can communicate with other devices, as well.
Price range of INNOVA scan tools
- Under $50: Most tools in this price range are basic code readers. They’re simple in design but not as robust in their diagnostic power as higher-priced INNOVA OBDII scan tools.
- $50-$100: In this price range, you can typically expect access to all 10 modes of the OBD2 protocols. Alternatively, they may offer partial OBD2 support along with other functions like alternator testing or access to ABS/SRS data.
- $100 and above: These scanners are designed for experienced DIYers or professional mechanics. They may even include advanced features like bi-directional control or ABS bleeding, along with code reading and access to live data streams.
Tips and buying guides
Now that you know more about INNOVA and its products, you’re probably wondering what to look for in an INNOVA diagnostic scanner. Here are the core features you should look for:
- Vehicle compatibility. This is the first thing you should check when shopping for a scan tool. Many OBD2 scanners are compatible with all vehicles made after 1996, while others will be limited to specific brands or model years.
- OBD2 codes and data. Short for “on-board diagnostics”, the OBD2 system generates trouble codes when something is amiss in the engine. It also gives access to live data streams and emission test results.
- Multi-system diagnosis. Not every engine system is covered under OBD2. If you want to see issues with the transmission, airbags, anti-lock brakes, or electronic systems, an INNOVA diagnostic tool with multi-system or full-system scanning will get the job done.
- Repair and maintenance functions. For those who want to perform basic maintenance like changing the oil or replacing the brake pads, a tool with repair functions allows you to reset the engine computer after those repairs are made. You can also turn off the dash warning lights for systems like the battery or oil.
- How old is your car? Vehicles made in 1995 or earlier used the OBD1 diagnostic system, which isn’t always covered by OBD2 scan tools.
- What country is your car from? Cars from Europe or Japan may use EOBD or JOBD protocols, respectively, rather than the OBD2 protocols common in the United States.
- How easy is it to use and read the tool? More straightforward tools with fewer features often have a lower learning curve for beginning mechanics and everyday drivers. The size and resolution of the screen can also affect how hard it is to read the data.
- Will I get access to the RepairSolutions 2 app? This helpful companion app can be paired with many INNOVA scanners. Along with technical bulletins and recall alerts, it provides repair suggestions and other helpful information.
A more expensive INNOVA OBD2 scan tool isn’t necessarily better for your needs. While the functionality typically goes up along with the price, there’s no reason to buy a $200 OBDII scanner if you only plan to use it for reading trouble codes.
Use the features and price-points outlined above as a guide as you’re searching. Think about how involved you plan to be in making home repairs. For most everyday drivers, a basic INNOVA code reader provides the functionality you need at a more budget-friendly price.
Best INNOVA scan tools reviews
|Editor's Picks||Products||Our Rating|
|Best Overall||INNOVA 6030P||9.5/10|
|Runner Up||INNOVA 3020RS||9.5/10|
|Great Pick||INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310||9/10|
|Best Budget Buy||INNOVA 3123||8.5/10|
|Best For Professionals||INNOVA CarScan Pro 5610||8.5/10|
INNOVA 6030P OBD2 scanner
The INNOVA 6030P is a compact and user-friendly INNOVA OBD2 code reader. It can run all 10 modes of the OBD2 test system, but it doesn’t stop there. With battery and alternator testing and the ability to read anti-lock brake fault codes, it has more diagnostic power than most scanners in this price range.
For most, the design of the INNOVA 6030P is its most impressive feature. The 3LED indicator on display shows you the severity of trouble codes that trigger. Its 2.8” color screen shows up to 20 data points at once, with hotkeys on the navigation panel for quick access to the most-used features.
Best of all, the INNOVA 6030P supports Bluetooth connectivity. Pair it with the RepairSolutions 2 app to see verified repair suggestions from certified mechanics. It’s compatible with many vehicles, too, supporting OBD2 diagnostics for most vehicles made in 1996 or later around the world.
The INNOVA 6030P OBD2 scanner is an excellent choice for everyday drivers, providing the fault codes and live data you need in an easy to use and affordable hand-held scanner.
- Simple design with intuitive navigation
- Gives robust live data readings in real-time
- LED indicator shows code severity level
- Reads engine and ABS fault codes
- Bluetooth support for pairing with RepairSolutions 2 app
- Runs battery system and alternator checks
- ABS diagnosis not available for European vehicles
- No oil reset or other maintenance functions
INNOVA 3020RS OBDII scan tool
The INNOVA 3020RS is one of the most streamlined scanners from the company and another top choice for drivers who want to check their car’s fault codes and emission levels quickly. Its simple display is even easier to navigate, with 4 buttons and a 3-light severity indicator.
While the INNOVA 3020RS displays a lot of information, it doesn’t read as much as other scan tools. There’s no live data or freeze frame data, for example. It’s an affordable way to find out why your check engine light is on, but its usefulness for making repairs is limited because of this.
Having said that, it’s well-priced for what it does and still includes some features you won’t find on most OBDII code readers, such as reading ABS codes.
INNOVA 3020RS OBDII scan tool is a simple way to check codes from the engine and ABS, though its lack of live data can limit its use for home repairs.
- Read and reset ABS and OBD2 fault codes
- 3-light smog check indicator
- Simple navigation with dedicated hotkeys
- Works on all vehicles made after 1996, including hybrids
- All-in-one display shows a lot of information
- Non-color display
- No live data
INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310 OBD2 scanner
With 3-system functionality, the INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310 goes a step further than the INNOVA OBD2 scanners above. It reads and clears codes from the SRS system along with the ABS and engine. Besides, it has more comprehensive live data, providing access to information like the oil temperature and engine RPM in real-time.
On top of that, you can reset the oil light and view helpful oil information, making the CarScan 5310 an excellent INNOVA OBDII scanner for drivers who want to maintain their car at home. It includes battery and alternator tests, as well, though these will only work with standard 12-volt batteries, not hybrid batteries.
The INNOVA 5310 has a full-color 2.8” screen and smog check severity indicator. Its keypad is otherwise the same as other INNOVA OBD2 scanners, and it’s equally comfotable to learn how to use it, even with its additional functionality.
With 3-system diagnosis and oil reset capability, the INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310 OBD2 scanner is an ideal tool for beginning home mechanics.
- Read and reset ABS, SRS, and engine codes
- Accurate, comprehensive live data reading
- Works on all vehicles made 1996 or later (including hybrids)
- Includes battery testing and oil reset
- At-a-glance smog check LED display
- More navigation buttons and hotkeys than basic scanners
- Battery check won’t work on hybrid or electric vehicles
- No bi-directional control capabilities
INNOVA 3123 GM OBD1 scan tool
Here’s an OBD1 code reader for owners of older vehicles. With the INNOVA 3123, you can read trouble codes generated by the ECM, transmission, or ABS module on General Motors cars and trucks made between 1982 and 1995.
The limited compatibility of the INNOVA 3123 is its main drawback. Having said that, though, GM drivers can use it without worrying about damage to the engine computer, as it’s guaranteed not to harm the vehicle’s electronic systems.
Owners of older GMs will love the INNOVA 3123 GM OBD1 scan tool since it lets you read codes from both the engine and the ABS module.
- Reads ECM, transmission, and ABS codes
- Performs self-tests of vehicle’s computer
- Works with GM cars and trucks from 1982-1995
- Safe to use without damaging the engine computer
- Simple operation
- Only designed for use with GM OBD1 vehicles
- No Bluetooth connectivity
INNOVA CarScan Pro 5610 OBDII scanner
For professionals and advanced DIYers, the INNOVA CarScan Pro 5610 has the advanced data reading you need. Its most impressive function is bi-directional control of actuators, fuel pumps, and other mechanical components.
That bi-directional control means you can also use the INNOVA 5610 for maintenance functions. It can perform ABS bleeding, brake caliper service, force DPF regeneration, or reset the steering angle. Combined with functions like battery initialization and TPMS reading, that covers the majority of vehicle systems.
The INNOVA 5610 also has full 4-system diagnostic power. You can use it to see the live data stream from the 4 major vehicle systems. It’s also a great way to log and monitor engine performance since this data can be recorded and played back as needed.
With 4-system diagnosis, comprehensive module reading, and useful maintenance functions, the INNOVA CarScan Pro 5610 OBD2 scanner is best for advanced mechanics and professionals.
- Read live data from the engine, transmission, ABS, and SRS
- All data can be graphed, recorded, and played back
- Bi-directional control for many engine components
- Includes battery initialization and voltage reading, even for hybrids
- Emissions status checks with helpful 3-light indicator
- Maintenance functions including EPB service and ABS bleeding
- Supports OBD1 protocols
- OBD1 coverage requires an adapter (not included)
- Higher price than other INNOVA scan tools
INNOVA 3120e OBD2 scan tool
Broad model year compatibility is the first advantage of the INNOVA 3120E. This INNOVA OBDII scan tool reads and clears DTCs on all OBD2 vehicles, including hybrids. Additionally, it supports OBD1 diagnostics of the engine and transmission of cars made from 1982-1995.
For vehicles made after 1996, the INNOVA 3120E is even more powerful. Starts with the oil reset function, which gives you a step-by-step guide for turning off the dash warning light after you change the oil. It cab also read ABS codes. Though this function is limited to a few brands, it supports common manufacturers like Ford, Chrysler, GM, Honda, and Toyota.
While the INNOVA 3120E lacks some features professional mechanics need, its capabilities are ideal for DIY repairs. Its most notable omission is that it won’t read live data, so that’s something to be aware of before buying it.
With support for both OBD1 and OBD2 protocols, the INNOVA 3120e OBD2 scan tool has the power to diagnose engine trouble codes in vehicles made from 1982 clear through the newest models.
- Read and clear codes from the engine and ABS
- Supports both OBD1 and OBD2 protocols
- All-in-one display shows 25 pieces of information
- Reset the oil light for most vehicles made 1996 and later
- ABS functionality is only available for select models
- Doesn’t read live data
INNOVA 3145 OBD1 code reader
If you’re looking for a cheap way to read codes from an older vehicle, The INNOVA 3145 is a great choice. It reads OBD1 trouble codes and performs self-tests on both MCU and EEC-IV vehicle computers. This lets you see issues from both the engine and transmission. Plus, it enables you to perform vehicle self-tests, with instructions included that walk you through the process.
Now keep in mind this isn’t designed for all OBD1 vehicles. It’s built to work with Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury’s cars and trucks between 1982 and 1995. Beyond that, its compatibility and functionality aren’t guaranteed. Though, it’s one of the most robust tools on the market for owners of those vehicles.
For diagnosing Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles that use the OBD1 protocol, the INNOVA 3145 OBD1 code reader should be your go-to-choice.
- Very affordable
- Compatible with EEC-IV control systems and MCU
- Stores all codes even when you unplug the reader
- Simple to use and easy to read
- Works with Fords, Lincolns, and Mercuries made 1982-1995
- Limited manufacturer compatibility
- Not compatible with the RepairSolutions 2 app
INNOVA 6100P OBD2 diagnostic tool
Heading back to the OBD2 era, The INNOVA 6100P diagnostic scanner is a great mid-range option for DIYers. It doesn’t just show fault codes from the engine, ABS, and SRS but also gives the freeze frame data from when the code is triggered. That’s a massive help in troubleshooting the issue and making repairs.
INNOVA has made some smart design choices with the 6100P, too. It has the 3-light code severity indicator you’ll find on other hand-held scanners, first of all. We also love the LED light on the OBD port connector. Therefore, it’s easy to hook up even in the dark or if your port is in a hard-to-reach area.
Functionally, the lack of live data stream reading keeps the INNOVA 6100P out of the professional scan tool category. However, it has some extra features that make up for this lack of home mechanics, like the battery and alternator test that can troubleshoot starting issues.
The INNOVA 6100P OBD2 diagnostic tool is a top pick for DIYers, with wide code reading capability and support for home maintenance and repairs.
- Shows fault codes from the engine, ABS, and SRS
- Displays freeze frame data for triggered codes
- Step-by-step oil light reset
- 3LED code severity indicator
- Tests the battery and alternator, even on hybrids
- Comes with convenient carrying bag included
- May not support ABS/SRS diagnostics for European vehicles
- No live data stream
INNOVA 3040RS OBDII code reader
The functionality of the INNOVA 3040RS far exceeds what you’d expect from a scan tool in the under-$100 price point. Its OBD2 support includes both live data and freeze frame data, which other affordable code readers often neglect.
It also makes ABS and charging system diagnosis available for a wider range of vehicles. These functions are supported on most cars and trucks made after 1996 from anywhere in the world. While this doesn’t include maintenance features like brake bleeding or battery initialization, it’s still impressive for an entry-level scanner.
The connectivity of the INNOVA 3040RS impressed us, as well. It’s enabled to connect via either Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. This puts the full power of the RepairSolutions 2 app at your disposal.
The INNOVA 3040RS OBDII code reader reads ABS codes as well as engine live data and freeze frame data, functionality that makes it an exceptional value at a price.
- Reads live data and freeze frame data
- Tests battery and charging system
- Indicates trouble code severity
- ABS diagnosis for most vehicles made after 1996
- Bluetooth-enabled to pair with RepairSolutions 2 app
- No maintenance functions
- Only reads trouble codes for ABS (no live data)
INNOVA 3160g Pro OBD2 scan tool
While the INNOVA 3160G looks very similar to other INNOVA scanners, it has some key differences. First of all, it has a larger screen, making it easier to see and interpret live data readings. It supports more data, too, reading both codes and real-time readings from the engine, anti-lock brakes, and airbags on most vehicles with OBD2 compatibility.
The service functions on the INNOVA 3160G cover all the bases for a home mechanic. It also allows you to turn off the dash warning light after installing a new battery or changing the oil along with code reading and live data.
Convenience is a point in the INNOVA 3160G’s favor, as well. The display includes a code severity indicator, and it has helpful hotkeys on the navigation panel. Its illuminated OBD2 plug rounds out these features, making it overall one of the most user-friendly OBD2 diagnostic scanners around.
Home mechanics will love the functionality and design features of the INNOVA 3160g Pro OBD2 scan tool, whose larger screen and maintenance features make it easier to diagnose and repair issues.
- 3-system code reading capability (engine, ABS, SRS)
- Supports most OBD2 vehicles (including European makes)
- Saves diagnostic data for up to 3 vehicles
- Real-time live data can be streamed and recorded
- Includes battery maintenance and initialization functions
- Resets the oil light
- No bi-directional control
- Doesn’t have Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity
Recommendation: Top 3 INNOVA scanners
Those who are just getting into DIY repairs will love both the functionality and value of the INNOVA 6030P. It gives you access to all 10 modes of OBD2 and will also test the battery and starting system. Along with that, access to the RepairSolutions 2 app provides repair suggestions and other useful info.
For everyday drivers, the INNOVA 3020RS is our top pick. From a design perspective, it’s simple, straightforward, and easy to use. While its functions are more limited than other options, it’s the most affordable option if you simply want to check your emissions or determine why your check engine light is on.
For experienced mechanics, we recommend the INNOVA CarScan Pro 5310. It does more than other INNOVA OBD2 diagnostic tools, with basic maintenance functions as well as error codes and live data from the 3 major vehicle systems. The flip side of this is it’s a bit pricier and more involved in its design.
❓ Does it cost money to update an INNOVA scan tool?
💡 No. Updates are free for life for INNOVA diagnostic tools, so you don’t need to worry about yearly subscriptions or other ongoing expenses.
❓ How can I be sure if these INNOVA diagnostic tools are compatible with my vehicle?
💡 The easiest way is to use the coverage checker on INNOVA’s website. Simply type in your vehicle information, and it will show you which OBDII scan tools support your car or truck.
❓ Do these INNOVA OBDII scan tools require batteries or power to function?
💡 No, they’re powered by the battery in your vehicle once they’re plugged in. Some models also take batteries, but this is only to power things like the lighted plug or other features you want to use when the tool isn’t connected to your car.
❓ How do I connect these INNOVA OBD2 code readers to my vehicle?
💡 All of these tools connect to the diagnostic port. This is typically found on or around the steering column in OBD2 vehicles. It’s a trapezoid-shaped input port with 16 pins. If you can’t find your vehicle’s OBD port, check your repair manual for its location.
❓ What should I do if I have a problem with my INNOVA scan tool?
💡 You can call INNOVA’s customer support at 1-800-544-4124 from 6 am-6 pm PST. If it’s outside these hours, you can also reach out through their website. The support team is known for being very responsive and knowledgeable, so they should be able to solve your issue promptly.
Choosing the best INNOVA scan tool comes down to deciding what you’re looking for. Consider your vehicle first. Once you’ve found the tools compatible with it, look at what features they offer.
Any of these INNOVA OBDII scanners will provide accurate, fast data, and they’re all backed by customer support you can trust. We hope this review and breakdown has helped you figure out the difference between them and which one is the perfect match for you.