Running into a problem with your car can make commuting a challenge. When your car gives you problems, but you are unable to identify the reason, it becomes even more frustrating. Fortunately, technology is always evolving and now allows the average consumer to easily check for engine troubles.
This is where the Micro Mechanic system comes in. The system consists of a small device, along with a smartphone app. Together, these two make it easy to diagnose a range of different problems with your car. While some believe the Micro Mechanic is an essential tool for car owners, others are not so sure. In this Micro Mechanic review, we take a look at the device and consider how it can help.
What can Micro Mechanic do?
The Micro Mechanic is a small device that plugs directly into your car. The device can be used if the check engine light comes on. The purpose of the Micro Mechanic is to serve as an engine diagnostic tool.
Engines generally provide specific codes when affected by certain problems. These codes help a mechanic determine the specific fault, ensuring a comprehensive inspection is not needed. Instead, the code can be used to determine the best way to fix the issue in less time.
When using the Micro Mechanic device, it will be plugged into the OBD II port in the vehicle. The device comes with built-in Bluetooth technology, allowing it to pair with your smartphone.
Once plugged in and paired, engine codes are read and displayed on the paired device. The device can be used with the official Micro Mechanic app, as well as certain alternatives that are also available on app stores.
The Micro Mechanic device is made by a company known as OnTel Products Corporation. The company is listed at the Better Business Bureau, and currently holds a B star rating on the platform. The company behind the Micro Mechanic device has announced that they are open to feedback and constantly strive to improve the features offered by the system.
OnTel also wants to ensure you do not feel like their device is a waste of money in cases where you feel unhappy. When the check engine light comes on and the device does not provide the expected results, a money-back guarantee is available.
Benefits of Micro Mechanic
There is a number of benefits that you can obtain when you decide to invest in the Micro Mechanic code reader. As seen on TV, the device can provide a large number of error codes, and even offer diagnostic data once the codes have been read.
Below, we share a few of the most important benefits that you get through this particular device:
- The official application that works with the Micro Mechanic is available for iPhone and Android devices. It is also free to download the app on both iPhone and Android. This means there are no additional expenses when you decide to invest in this device.
- The Micro Mechanic code reader will do a comprehensive scan of your engine and tell you if it is safe to drive. When the safe to drive notification is shown, it means that no concerning error codes were detected after the code reader was plugged into the diagnostic port.
- The company offers a double offer. This means that you will currently pay the standard price for a single Micro Mechanic reader, but you’ll get two of these devices in the package. The package deal gives you more for your money. This also allows you to keep one in the car, with another one in your bag. If the check engine light came on while you are in a different car, then you have the spare reader with you.
- Some people found error codes prior to going on a long trip. In this case, you have the opportunity to display the report from the app to a mechanic. They can then address these issues prior to your trip. This can save you a significant amount of trouble – compared to only discovering these faults when your car fails to work properly while you are traveling.
- While codes are displayed on your smartphone, thanks to the built-in Bluetooth technology, the app is also capable of providing details in an easy to understand context. This ensures you can get a better idea of the problems, even if you are not a mechanic or know much about the engine in your vehicle.
- There are no external power supplies that need to be connected before you can use the Micro Mechanic. This means you won’t have to carry around extra batteries or cables to power the device. Instead, it will draw power directly from the diagnostic port used to read codes.
- The wide compatibility of the Micro Mechanic also adds to its benefits. You are able to use this device in a large number of cars. The diagnostic tool is not only made for modern vehicles, but can be used on many older models too.
Micro Mechanic Features
It is important to understand the specific features you gain access to when investing in the Micro Mechanic. One of the major advantages that the Micro Mechanic offers lie in its small size.
When it comes to testing for engine error codes on-the-go, you do not want to carry large objects with you. If the check engine light comes on, this device is easy to get out and does not require much space. The smaller size also means it will fit into your mechanic toolbox more effectively.
Apart from compactness, the Micro Mechanic offers immediate diagnostics. The moment you plug it in and sync your smartphone with the device, you can immediately see the error codes provided by the engine. Since Bluetooth technology is used, it also means you do not have to worry about plugging in any type of cable.
Micro Mechanic App
Ontel, the company behind the Micro Mechanic device, has developed an app that is dedicated to the reader. This app can be downloaded on most Android devices, as well as on iPhones and other smart devices that run the iOS operating system.
For the app to work effectively, your smartphone needs Bluetooth. The Bluetooth should be turned on to ensure the device is able to pair with your smartphone.
You can find a link to the app on the official Micro Mechanic website, or alternatively, search for it in your smartphone’s App Store. The star rating for the app is under 3.0 on both Apple’s App Store and Google Play Store.
The app provides several features that you can use. The primary function is the ability to read engine codes. If the check engine light comes on, you can simply plug the device in and read the codes. In addition to this function, the app also provides maintenance reminder notifications.
The app also features a repair cost estimate function. When error codes are identified in your engine, the application gives you an estimate on how much it would cost to fix these issues. Prioritization of error codes is another helpful feature. When multiple codes are detected, the app will help you understand which of these are urgent. While the device is synced with your smartphone, it is also possible to use the app to reset the check engine light.
While the app is free, there are some premium features. Many people do seem to have a problem with this. Since you already pay for the main device, you now have to pay additional fees if you want access to certain premium features. A number of issues have also been noted. There are several concerns with the live performance function offered by the app, as the feature seems to cause the app to crash.
Micro Mechanic Compatible Apps
Due to the rating on App Stores, some people are concerned about using the default app that Ontel made for the Micro Mechanic. Fortunately, the device is relatively universal.
This means you are not restricted to just one app. You can easily use the device with other apps as well. There are multiple apps that seem to be fully compatible with the Micro Mechanic system.
Some of the apps that you can try out include:
- Torque Pro
- Mini OBDII
- OBD Auto Doctor
Note that most of these apps will only give you basic functions if there is a free version available. You’ll usually be presented with an offer to upgrade to a premium version through an in-app purchase. In some cases, such as with the OBD Auto Doctor app, a monthly subscription is required to continue using the app.
Make sure you read through reviews and take advantage of any free trials that are available. It is important to test multiple apps to ensure you can find the one that works well for you. Overall, particularly when considering the ratings of these apps, it seems like Torque Pro and Carista are good options.
Even though there are a few negative reviews, the majority of people seem to be satisfied with the services and features offered by the two apps.
What Cars Does Micro Mechanic Work On?
When looking at compatibility, the Micro Mechanic device is generally considered universal. In the year 1996, vehicle manufacturers were requested to include an OBD II port on all vehicles manufactured from this year onward.
The Micro Mechanic device takes advantage of the OBD II port that is found in vehicles. With this in mind, if your vehicle was manufactured in 1996 or later, then you will likely be able to use the Micro Mechanic reader.
Read More : History of OBD2
Is Micro Mechanic Legit?
There are some questions regarding how “legit” the Micro Mechanic device is. When seen on TV, many people go out to get their hands on the device – and some do find it to be a very useful device.
When looking at the star rating on various platforms, however, then you can clearly see that opinions are mixed. Regardless, the device has been bought by a large number of individuals and is considered legit. It comes with its own mobile app, but can also be used with third-party options.
There are quite a large number of customer reviews that you can look at before buying the OnTel Micro Mechanic. Reading a customer’s review is always useful.
Focus on all the ratings, even the one-star rating. This helps you get an unbiased opinion of the device, making it easier to determine whether or not it is worth your money.
One concerning factor is that there are several reviews that state the device is inaccurate. In one review, the customer was told that it is safe to drive, yet a local mechanic was able to identify multiple faults with their vehicle.
There are also reviews from actual mechanics who state that the device does not live up to the claims. On the other hand, some reviews do seem to be positive. It does seem that a large number of people complain about the app, and not the device itself.
If this is the case, then switching to a different app may be a possible solution. The device is not only compatible with the official app. There are additional app options that provide support for the Micro Mechanic reader.
Alternatives to Micro Mechanic
Due to the negative reviews and the relatively low star rating of the Micro Mechanic, you might be interested in considering alternative options too. Currently, one of the highest-rated alternatives is FIXD. This device actually shares a large number of similarities to the Micro Mechanic but does seem to be a good choice for people who prefer a more user-friendly experience.
The higher star rating associated with the FIXD system also makes it a more attractive option. Similar to the Micro Mechanic, the FIXD device also comes with a mobile app.
The app can be installed on both Android and iOS devices. One of the major advantages when comparing the two is the fact that the FIXD app seems to be much more user-friendly.
The device also has a portable design, making it easy to keep in the diagnostic port or add to your bag. One thing to note, however, is that FIXD does not have the same double offer as you can find with the Micro Mechanic device. Thus, if you prefer to have two of these devices, you’ll have to buy each one separately.
Read More : Best OBD2 Splitter
The Micro Mechanic device is used by professionals and home users alike. The compact structure makes it a travel-friendly diagnostic tool.
By pairing with your smartphone, you can easily see diagnostic data and even obtain information related to the appropriate fixes. This can make the process of fixing engine problems faster and more efficient.
Overall, the device does seem to have a lot of potentials. Many people find it a useful device to have, but there are still some people who turn to alternatives. To determine if the Micro Mechanic is the right OBD II device for you, it is important to consider your own requirements, as well as compatibility with your smartphone.
Pilar is an on-the-road Editor from Brazil living in Bali. On Geeqer she covers phones, tablets, wearables and devices. She is one of those minimalists that likes to buy the best to buy only once.