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How to Read OBD2 Codes without Scanner Ford: Ford Scanner Hacks

Are you constantly getting a check engine light or any other error for a Ford truck? Do you want to learn how to read obd2 codes without scanner ford?

Ignoring any kind of warning light or error can be a risky practice. Imagine skipping the ABS warning light and then meeting an accident due to poor braking.

When you know how to read the obd2 codes, Ford, you can easily resolve the problem or can get assistance from experts.

Not everyone has an OBD2 scanner in his garage. Although the OBD2 scanner is a perk yet, you can assess the error codes with several other methods.

For Ford trucks and some other vehicles, reading and understating error codes without a scanner is possible.

Professionals use the OBD2 scanner to read the error codes so that an accurate part or component can be repaired or replaced.

The exact procedure to read and understand the error code for Ford vehicles may vary for different models, so we are going to explore the most common method here.

By using Ford’s built-in error code diagnostic system, you can understand and read almost every warning light and code.

Here is everything you need to know about obd2 codes checking without scanner Ford.

How to Read OBD2 Codes without Scanner Ford: the Process

In the next few moments, we are going to discuss a few methods where you can understand any kind of error code without an OBD2 scanner.

Let’s get started with the most common methods that work for most of the Ford vehicles.

Mehod 1: Odometer Reset Method

In this method, you don’t need any kind of scanner or other tools. Here are the simple steps that you need to follow:

  • Press the odometer button to reset the system and hold it
  • After pressing the reset button, turn the key to the accessory option
  • Hold the button for a few seconds and you will see “TEST” signs appeared on the meter
  • Release the button after seeing “TEST” on the screen and press it again to initiate the test cycle
  • The next step is to press the DTC button to understand the error code in Ford

If you have followed the steps carefully, you will be able to understand the error code after this process.

Many people use the same method with some slight variations as they reset the meter and then turn on the ignition. The ultimate goal is to get the error code and then understand it to identify the problem.

Method 2: Reading the Error Code with Ignition Key

When it comes to the easiest way of understanding the error code for Ford, this method is the winner.

Even a common user with no prior knowledge of the car error codes can interpret the problem and the error code.

You only need to stick to the given steps and you will have the details of the code in no time. Here are a few steps of how to read obd2 codes without scanner ford:

  • You need to turn off and on the ignition key.
  • You need to follow the same steps as explained in the previous method, but you need to keep repeating the process this time. The number of variations may vary depending upon the model of your car. Some cars take 5-6 repetitions, while most of the cars show the error code right after 3 attempts.
  • Make sure that you don’t turn on the engine every time. You just need to keep shifting the engine key’s position, but the engine does not need to be turned on every time. If you end up with a started engine during the process, you will have to repeat the entire process. Throughout the process, the engine should remain turned off.
  • Repeating the process 5-6 times will turn on the check engine light. Once the check engine light is on, it means that you are on the right track.
  • You need to have the repair manual of the Ford car or truck for the next step
  • There will be different pulses of the check engine light. You need to calculate the pulses and then interpret the blinks of the check engine light to understand the error code

The process may seem difficult, but the practical implementation is too easy. You just need to stay on track.

In this process, you don’t need any kind of technical assistance or tools to understand the codes.

Method 3: Reading Error Codes with a Wire

The two above-mentioned steps to understand the error code for Ford vehicles may not work for some models, so here is the3rd method to understand the error codes with the OBD2 scanner.

As compared to the other two methods, this one is a little bit more complicated and tricky.

You may not get accurate results if you don’t follow all the steps carefully. For this method, you need a piece of wire to read the code without the scanner.

Here are the steps that must be followed carefully to interpret the codes without an OBD2 scanner:

  • Open the Ford bonnet and locate the testing port
  • Pull out the testing port for the further procedure from the shock tower
  • Two connectors can be used for engine testing so pull those connectors out
  • You need to locate the connectors that are attachable to the wire and generally, you will find the connectors on the right side of the box
  • Once you have attached the wire to the connectors, go into the car and shift the key position off but don’t turn on the car engine
  • As the check engine light start illuminating, you need to count the number of times it blinks
  • Each set of blinking lights represents a code and you can easily understand the error with these blinking lights
  • Now, turn on the Ford engine and then again monitor the check engine light

The RPM will go higher during the process, but it will come to normal values after the test, and you will have the numbers for the blinking light to understand the code without an OBD2 scanner.

Required Tools for the Process

As the purpose of these methods is to offer the freedom of understanding the Ford error codes without the OBD2 scanner, so you don’t need any kind of additional tools for the process.

For the 3rd method, you need a small piece of wire, nothing else.

The process and steps may vary depending upon your car’s model, but these three methods on how to read obd2 codes without scanner ford work for almost all models of Ford.

FAQs about How to Read OBD2 Codes without Scanner Ford

Onboard Diagnostic II is the tool used by car owners and car repair experts to identify and locate the problem with any car made after 1996.

OBD2 device communicates with the internal computer system of the vehicle to pinpoint the problem with the car.

What is OBD2 Reader?

When the OBD2 device communicates with the car’s internal computer system, it needs some kind of external device to show the information and display the details.

Special types of OBD2 systems come with a built-in display, or you can use your smartphone to get the details about the error and the issue.

Can you Understand the Error Code without OBD2?

Understanding the error code without having an OBD2 device may be impossible for some cars, but in most advanced cars, you can interpret the codes by following some steps.

We have already described the whole process of how to read the OBD2 codes without a scanner Ford. You can also other methods for different carmakers.

Will the OBD2 Device Use the Battery?

Although it is nothing wrong with leaving the OBD2 plugged in, the safe practice is removing the device after usage.

Cheap quality OBD2 devices may consume the battery if these are left attached, so don’t take the risk as the completely drained battery may pose different problems.

For premium quality OBD2 systems, it is safe to leave the device attached to the car.

Do I need to Turn on the Car Engine for the OBD2 Scan?

Every car has different requirements for the use of OBD2, so make sure to read the user manual.

Some cars communicate with the OBD2 scanner while the engine is turned on, and for some cars, you only need to turn the key to the on position.


These methods are not meant to be used for any specific Ford model but as a general guideline for Ford. Failure of one method means that you need to try the other one.

Most of the Ford error codes can be easily understood with these methods, so you don’t need to buy OBD2 or pay for diagnostic.

Once you have the error code and understanding of the problem, you can easily get affordable repair services. Make sure to follow all the steps to read OBD2 codes without a scanner Ford.  

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