When troubleshooting OBD II (On-Board Diagnostics) vehicles, a intelligent tester (complying with SAE J1987) must be connected to the DLC3 (Data Link Connector 3) of the vehicle. Various data in the vehicle's ECM (Engine Control Module) can be then read. OBD II regulations require that the vehicle's on-board computer illuminates the MIL (Malfunction Indicator Lamp) on the instrument panel when the computer detects a malfunction in:
(a) The emission control systems and components
(b) The power train control components (which affect vehicle emissions)
(c) The computer itself
In addition, the applicable DTCs (Diagnostic Trouble Codes) prescribed by SAE J2012 are recorded on 3 consecutive trips, the MIL turns off automatically but the DTCs remain recorded in the ECM memory. To check DTCs, connect a intelligent tester to the DLC3. The tester displays DTCs, freeze frame data, and a variety of engine data. The DTCs and freeze frame data can be erased with the tester (see page ES-40).
In order to enhance OBD function on vehicles and develop the Off-Board diagnosis system, CAN communication is introduced in this system (CAN: Controller Area Network). It minimizes a gap between technician skills and vehicle technology. CAN is a network, which uses a pair of data transmission lines, spanning multiple computers and sensors. It allows high speed communication between the systems and to simplify the wire harness connection.
Since this system is equipped with the CAN communication, connecting the CAN VIM (VIM: Vehicle Interface Module) with intelligent tester is necessary to display any information from the ECM. (Also the communication between the intelligent tester and the ECM uses CAN communication signal.) When confirming the DTCs and any data of the ECM, connect the CAN VIM between the DLC3 and the intelligent tester.
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