I have a 2004 Daewoo Kalos. What type of code-reader do I need to find a fault code? I purchased one online and it plugged into the port but it was not able to give me a reading and others that I have looked at are not clear if they are compatible with the car.
There’s not a lot of good news here for the home mechanic, I’m afraid. No doubt some of the code-readers you can buy online will do the job, but it’s all a bit of a lottery. In many cases, you’re buying a code-reader from overseas, and while it might cover the car you own, it might be loaded with the software for a different version of the same model. Also, you can’t update the reader with new software as it becomes available and, in many cases, you’ll need more than one code-reader to cover all of the car’s systems.
According to a lot of workshops, generic code-readers aren’t worth the bother and will often only give you the fault code-number, rather than an explanation of what the fault actually is. Sometimes, they’ll just flash up a message that you should refer the problem to a dealership. Not very helpful.
I spoke to a Daewoo specialist workshop about this and was told that the code-readers worth bothering with start at about $8000 and go all the way to $12,000. Which, I imagine, is more than you wanted to spend.