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Afternoon all.  What OBDII readers / software do folks on here use to reset Lexus error codes, please ? Specifically the perennial "Check VSC" and ABS lights.   I'm STILL struggling with my "Check VSC" issue.... had a spate of smokiness a while ago (which has calmed down since I cleaned the EGR and DPF, and replaced the 5th injector, and reset the ECU by disconnecting the Battery) .... but the fault message remains, as does the ABS warning light which seems to go with it... and that's an MOT failure, as I just learned 😞  My generic cheap Chinese OBDII reader, along with "Torque Lite" on the phone.... says "No codes recorded".  So I'm guessing I need something more Lexus-aware ?   Thanks all in advance.  Cheers - Chris.

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You need Techstream (runs on a laptop). Available for purchase on popular auction sites.

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OBD2 is an industry standard and some parameters will be the same for all cars and a cheapo reader will suffice for these.

However, as you've found out, manufacturers also include other parameters that are specific to them, and as John says above, for Toyota/Lexus you'll never do better than a laptop with Techstream running on it.

Techstream can be legitimately and freely downloaded from Toy/Lex websites and you can buy a block of time to use it, ie, 1 hour, 4 hours, 1 day etc., etc., from them.

You'll need to buy a miniVCI cable from eBay or amazon to connect the laptop to the car and they almost always come with a pirated copy of Techstream, so it's up to you and your conscience on how you run the software, but whichever you choose you'll need the cable anyway.

This is the one that I got and I can confirm it works well.

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8 hours ago, Chris_G said:

My generic cheap Chinese OBDII reader, along with "Torque Lite" on the phone.... says "No codes recorded".  

OBD2 BT adaptor brand plays little difference when it comes to clearing the codes. I have cheap Chinese BT adaptor, the only difference is that I have "torque pro", which I believe doesn't have adverts on it. You don't need to "find" the codes to clear them. In theory you should look to the codes stored on ECU to make sure you could address all the problems before deleting. However, when you send "clear" command it deletes all the codes - the ones displayed and those saved in the past. The only issue here is that you potentially going to delete some useful information (without seeing it) which could help diagnose the issue.

Few months ago VSC Check + ABS appeared on my car randomly when cruising on motorway, I stopped at service station, but Torque did not found any codes. I stop and started the engine and the warning lights disappeared. Still not fully satisfied with the information I tried few apps and the one which showed most comprehensive list of errors was "car scanner", which is as well totally free. It has 6 levels of scanning, the 6th being most comprehensive and takes like 10 minutes to run. It found 2 codes which did not make sense to me, cannot remember what it was but something Cruise control related, so I just deleted the codes via "Torque" and for couple of months now they haven't re-appeared. Again "Torque" didn't even see those codes, but still deleted them.

In summary, if you simply want to clear codes any BT adaptor and pretty much any app will do. If you want to see the codes which does make sense for troubleshooting then the best way to go is Techstream, secondly you can try "Car Scanner" app - maybe in your case codes will make more sense.

Finally, in my case I have deleted the codes and 2 month/2000 miles later they haven't reappeared, which means it was some sort of false positive alarm. BUT if codes re-appear after deletion, it means you actually have a problem there, so do not simply delete the codes every time without actually fixing it.

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Thanks to you all for replies, and apologies for this delayed reply - I've been away for a bit.  John - thanks for the advice re. Techstream.  This sounds stupid but I actually always thought that was a Vauxhall-specific app; I'm sure I've seen it discussed before on the Vectra forum I used to belong to.  Anyway - thanks for clearing that one up 🙂  Herbs thanks for the link - I've ordered the cable, and am waiting for my conscience to get back to me on the matter of the software 🙂  Linas - thanks for such a detailed reply - much appreciated.   I don't recall the exact menu option in Torque Lite, but it was something like "List Error Codes", and it came back saying "None Found"... odd, but understandable given that they are clearly hidden in a Toyota-specific part of the information structure... maybe your full copy of "Torque" goes deeper and isn't just ad-free as the only difference.  Good point also re simply deleting codes and expecting that to "fix" anything - yes, of course, if there's a fault, the code will reappear; I'll be mindful of that 🙂 

ANYWAY - meanwhile, I took the car down to my friendly local garage and had it hooked up and scanned - just because he did it for free - and he reckons he picked up an actual fault with the ABS.  Didn't see that one coming - I've had a lonngggg history of smoking / EGR / DPF / 5th Injector problems, so that "Check VSC" and "ABS" light is more often on than off.... but it might be the case that, on this occasion, it's actually telling the truth !.   I'll get my hands on some decent software as you've all advised, and have another look myself, before doing anything else... it seems the ABS Sensor is integral to the actual wheel bearing assembly, or so I'm told ?  Had that wheel bearing replaced 18 months ago, so don't want to shell out for another, just yet, unless I have to.   Had a quick look at the wiring / connector, and all seems OK... Bah, maybe there's some expense coming my way ... 😞

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Aye, the cheapo Bluetooth ODB2 readers can diag most things but they *only* interface with the main ECU, which is where you can miss issues with subsystems like the ABS, which has it's own ECU module.  I had a Mk2 Focus and got a Med/High bus cable and FORScan on my laptop to talk to the car, which allowed me to reprogram a Mk2.5 dash pod (and a spare key) to match my car, enable remote closing/opening of all windows, stuff like that.  Specialist apps and cable may cost more than the cheap stuff but they're certainly worth it if you need to have a detailed look at the car's systems and dare to do more in-depth adjustments.  Annoyingly my laptop is running Windows 10 and doesn't talk to my Chinese Techstream cable...yet.  I think it's just a matter of Windows drivers...

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You right to say that smartphone apps does not usually support more advance configuration (although Carista does have some of that), but that is not limitation of OBD2 reader itself - interface is the same. When it comes to Lexus (not sure about other cars) you could find all errors including ABS by connecting to "ECU". Yes ABS have it's own controlling module, and there are dozen similar modules for all different things, but what we need to be clear OBD2 connect to all of these modules as long as they have connection and are programmable. "ECU" (Engine Control Unit) is misused term back from the days when only the engine had control unit. OBD2 does not actually connect specifically to engine control unit, it connects to bunch of individual sensors and some of them are part of various units.

What I am saying?! - in theory you can all the same on the app as you can do on any cable, bt or wifi readers, they all connect to the same. The difference only comes to "generic" applications and car "specific" applications. So specifically Toyota/Lexus TechStream will have largest coverage of the options available for Lexus and they would be better described with proper names and not generic codes.

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2 hours ago, Linas.P said:

"ECU" (Engine Control Unit) is misused term back from the days when only the engine had control unit.

I think you'll find that the more accepted term is Electronic control unit because ECUs are found in many, many more things as well as cars.

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2 hours ago, Herbie said:

I think you'll find that the more accepted term is Electronic control unit because ECUs are found in many, many more things as well as cars.

Yes - hence my point, consider ECU as "engine control unit" is incorrect in most cases, with exception of where it actually control engine.

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2 hours ago, Linas.P said:

Yes - hence my point, consider ECU as "engine control unit" is incorrect in most cases, with exception of where it actually control engine.

Sorry Linas, misunderstood your post :rolleyes1:

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On 6/12/2019 at 7:53 AM, Mauler said:

Aye, the cheapo bluetooth ODB2 readers can diag most things but they *only* interface with the main ECU, which is where you can miss issues with subsystems like the ABS, which has it's own ECU module.  I had a Mk2 Focus and got a Med/High bus cable and FORScan on my laptop to talk to the car, which allowed me to reprogram a Mk2.5 dash pod (and a spare key) to match my car, enable remote closing/opening of all windows, stuff like that.  Specialist apps and cable may cost more than the cheap stuff but they're certainly worth it if you need to have a detailed look at the car's systems and dare to do more in-depth adjustments.  Annoyingly my laptop is running Windows 10 and doesn't talk to my Chinese Techstream cable...yet.  I think it's just a matter of Windows drivers...

Nice reply Mauler thanks.  I believe you're right - now I've got a copy of Techstream, I can see that there are in fact 6 or 7 ECU's in the Lexus !!  Much to my surprise.  And a separate one for ABS / VSC, as you say.  Mate if you're having trouble with drivers - I work in IT - I could fire you over a bundle of the drivers that are workihg for me on Win. 10, if you like ?

 

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