I understand this is not a website to ask for specific products. I have spent nearly 3 hours on the web trying to find a scanner that will be able to read and erase codes from my Volvo V50 2005 Europe 2.0 D.

I thought I found one, bought it but it doesn't work. I contacted several other scan tools makers and they explicitly told me theirs wouldn't work.

Did I have bad luck? Or is it really difficult to find a scan tool to work with my Volvo?


2 Answers 2


Depends on what you would like to do with it. If you just want to clear some generic codes and the check engine light, then most generic OBD2 cables should work with appropriate software.

If you want to do more advanced things, like reading Volvo specific codes or changing available parameters then what you need is VIDA + DiCE. It's a Volvo diagnostics tool and software package intended for professional mechanics. Which means that besides being functional it's also expensive. Counterfeit Chinese units are available for a fraction of the price, but you didn't hear this from me.


  • Ok, I'll try not to tell Google you told me this! If one wanted to buy the legit version where would I find it? I tried to call my volvo dealership and they wouldn't sell me one! Do you know any "friend" that got a counterfeit chinese and did it work? Thanks for the response
    – gota
    Jun 28, 2016 at 14:40
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    @NunoCalaim Honestly, I don't know where to get the genuine version. And I doubt you want it, might cost over a thousand bucks. Many people tried the counterfeit and got it working, but it might take some work. If I remember the software might only work on certain operating systems and needs some fiddling to get it running. For example Windows XP 32bit only (not necessarily true). But it's doable. Jun 29, 2016 at 8:27
  • Yes, I checked on it but decided to buy a very cheap Bluetooth adaptor I found on eBay, will give it a try with torque and if that doesn't work I'll try the DiCE one. The DiCE scanner apart from being 12x more expensive only works with Windows but at home we only have OS X. I still consider installing windows there if I need to but I am trying to avoid it
    – gota
    Jun 29, 2016 at 15:25
  • @Nuno Calaim the cheap bluetooth adapters are crap, but they should do the job if all you want is to clear some generic codes. Jun 29, 2016 at 15:40

From what I can tell, the 05 uses CAN protocal, not OBD2, and then there are some issues with using a generic tool, and most accepted, if not only official method, is to use a volvo-specific (proprietary) scan tool to read the codes.

Look over the link below and it appears that there has been some headway made in adapting a 'generic' scan tool to work, but it may be too technically involved for many to implement.


  • On my smartphone that link did not work. Can you double check?
    – gota
    Jun 27, 2016 at 23:29
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    OBD2 is a standard. CAN is a communications protocal. All cars made from 96 on have to support OBD2.
    – Ben
    Jun 28, 2016 at 1:19
  • Thanks for clarifying can vs obd. I thought they all used obd (I know there are some revisions of obd across years), but I had never heard of can scanners, so that makes sense. I thought it was some oddball Swede thing. // Regarding the link, it works using Chrome browser on my Android device, as mobile page (default for Chrome app), but when I tried requesting desktop site it didnt load. I dont know what the deal is with that, but if nithing else try it in Chrome, and if on pc, I believe you can request the mobile version in settings.. Maybe Google how, but ive seen the option.
    – user608804
    Jun 28, 2016 at 2:39
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    Yeah, you're mixing stuff up here. OBDII is not a protocol, CAN and OBDII are not mutually exclusive. Modern cars support OBDII and communicate via CAN. Jun 28, 2016 at 10:09

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