Myth - The J1962 Port

Scott from Claremont Manager Posted   Latest   Edited  

One of the biggest myths I recall stems from way before the diagnostic port was deployed for OBDII. The myth back then was that there was a machine used that tells the technician what was wrong.

Unfortunately, there are many today that believe (and preach) that the OBDII Port (J1962 Connector) is used much in the same way. I’ve heard some say that all a technician needs to do is connect to the car and the software does the rest, directing the technician to exactly what part needs to be replaced and or what service needs to be done. Essentially, meaning that the technician is just there to follow directions and no longer has to perform any analysis or thinking. This is something of course I haven’t had to unlearn but it is something that we continuously help our customers unlearn.

Source: unknown

Reference: Myth Busting Project – Come Join the Mission


Sean from Cornville



So true. My favorite was a customer who was furious with me for charging her an hour to diagnose that she needed a maf sensor, when the code definition was maf sensor. I tried explaining to her that there's more than just a faulty sensor that will set the code, and it needed to be diagnosed, and it just went in one ear, and out the other.


Jaime from Ocala



Some anecdotal humor about this myth...

As he liked to go by, "Bubba", in a corner of his training room in Indianapolis, had an old, non-functional "Big-Box" analyzer. On its screen was taped a label on which was written the words "That Machine". He said that at least once per class of new students, someone would ask about it ("That Machine"). He'd happily explain the uneducated vehicle owner believed in the existence of one of those. The customers would ask "Can't you just hook it up to "That Machine" and it will tell you what's wrong"?.

Hence, Jim Linder acquired "That Machine" - and had one in his classroom.


Keith from Staten Island



I remember "that machine" well. I now own a laptop that is labeled, " the big scantool". It's just a non functional 17in laptop that I keep encased in a pelican box for show. When necessary I will let a customer take a glimpse, and tell them we won't need it for this car. Fun to do that and follow up with a handheld Actron using generic data 


Matthew from Lawrence



Good one Scott! I still get this one on a weekly basis. I try to explain to people that the code is a "starting point" that leads the technician down a diagnostic path. I think this myth is perpetuated to the general public by the parts stores that will do a code scan for free. I've had many people come in with a print out with the codes that includes possible parts that are causing the codes. Things like this don't help. I try to be patient with people and explain just throwing parts at the code can actually be more expensive than paying a diagnostic fee and fixing the car right the first time.


Scott from Claremont



Thanks Matt!