The Innova CarScan Advisor 5210.

Whether you’re a car owner trying to clear error codes or an auto repair enthusiast craving more advanced OBD2 scan features, the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 is worthy of consideration. This car diagnostic tool is an excellent entry-level option that offers a range of capabilities.

We listed the Innova CarScan Advisor as one of our top picks in our review of the best OBD2 scanners. In this review, we take a more detailed look at the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210, uncovering its strengths and weaknesses so you can determine if the car scanner meets your needs.

Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 Overview And Features

Pros Excellent entry-level device Works on both foreign and domestic cars
Cons No airbag, transmission, or tire pressure data Data collection capabilities are lacking compared to other models

Despite its relatively low cost of around $100, the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 offers several features the home mechanic might find helpful.

In addition to basic fault code reading, this OBDII scanner can access freeze frame data, test your battery, and monitor live data from the fuel injection system. It should be noted that you can access this OBDII scanner’s owner manual from the Innova website.

Key Features

  • Code severity levels to quickly identify repair needs
  • RepairSolutions2 app for iOS and Android smartphone connectivity
  • One button to read and clear codes
  • Compatible with domestic, Asian, and European cars from model years 1996 and newer
  • One-year replacement warranty for defective readers
  • All-in-one color display
  • More than 20 pieces of info on a single screen

Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 Testing Process

The Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 being installed into a vehicle.

We tested the Innova 5210 CarScan Advisor on a 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid, trying out each function listed in the CarScan Advisor owner’s manual.

Value: 4.5 Out Of 5

The Innova CarScan Advisor offers substantial value for around $100 as long as you’re not searching for an OBD2 scan tool with many features. This device may not be robust enough for professional mechanics or experts, but if you’re doing automotive work at home on your vehicles or just want to know why the check engine light is on, the CarScan Advisor is a solid pick.

Ease Of Use: 4 Out Of 5

The owner’s manual is clear and one of the better-written car diagnostic scan tool manuals we’ve encountered. It’s simple to attach the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 and test all the functions.

More expensive OBD2 scanners may feature touchscreen interfaces – which are easier to navigate – but despite not having a touchscreen, the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 is no problem to operate, even if you aren’t an auto maintenance expert.

Data Collection Capabilities: 3.5 Out Of 5

Although not packed with advanced features, the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 has a decent amount to offer for about $100. The CarScan Advisor can do the following:

  • Retrieve diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs)
  • Gather “enhanced” DTCs and anti-lock brake system (ABS) codes
  • Erase DTCs
  • Access the RepairSolutions2 database, which offers probable fixes and video tutorials
  • Display real-time data
  • Perform battery and alternator tests
  • Conduct O2 sensor tests and evaporative emissions control systems (EVAP) tests
  • Pull vehicle information

Except for the battery test – which does not seem to work with hybrid cars – we performed all these functions on our test vehicle.

What We Like About The Innova CarScan Advisor 5210

We believe the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 has plenty of valuable features for its price. It’s also one of the easier-to-use OBD2 code readers and is suitable for beginners interested in maintaining personal vehicles.

It is a nice middle ground for a car code reader since it offers a fairly comprehensive network scan of most vehicles and can perform emissions tests. Data loads quickly and the Repair Solutions app is simple to navigate. 

What We Don’t Like About The Innova CarScan Advisor 5210

Among the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210’s drawbacks is that the previously mentioned battery-testing feature doesn’t appear to work with hybrid vehicles. Also, the 5210 may not be suitable for more advanced diagnostic tasks.

A less significant but notable downside of the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 is that the owner’s manual doesn’t come with the scanner. You can, however, download the manual from the Innova website after providing an email address.

Also, having a built-in connector jack does limit users to a certain area of the car, which might be a dealbreaker for some. 

Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 Reviews

The Innova CarScan Advisor has an average score of 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon based on more than 2,100 customer reviews. Eighty-eight percent of reviews award the product 4 or more stars. We combed through customer comments and found that most agree with our testers’ assessment that the CarScan Advisor is a terrific choice for the cost.

Positive Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 Reviews

Those happy with the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 noted many of the same qualities: ease of use, helpful repair tips, and error codes.

“For someone who doesn’t know anything about cars other than an oil change, this device allows me to read the check engine lights without going to an auto shop.”

– MC via Amazon

“This plugged in and worked on my Ford really easily. The app gave me suggested repairs that made sense. When I tried to connect it to my second vehicle, an Infinity, I had to manually enter the VIN.”

– Renee via Amazon

Negative Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 Reviews

Some customers aren’t as happy with the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210. One reviewer said the smog test tool doesn’t provide much information about emissions-related DTCs. Another user said the Innova didn’t work with their BMW.

“Scanner works fine for the basic tool it is. Although the description boasts ‘smog scan,’ it does no such thing. All smog issues just say ‘Emissions related DTCs.’”

– The#1Man via Amazon

“Can’t do much clearing codes with newer-model BMWs. I had to take the newer BMW to the dealership to get cleared. It works fine with older models.”

– Just Tim via Amazon

Lower-priced OBD2 scanners may not work on as wide a range of vehicles. Make sure the Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 is compatible with your car before you buy one.

Our Take On The Innova CarScan Advisor 5210: 4 Stars

The Innova CarScan Advisor 5210 is an excellent choice if you want to work on your vehicle. It’s a low-cost Bluetooth OBD2 scanner that’s easy to use and can connect users with helpful videos and suggested repairs based on the error codes the tool detects.

Several Amazon customers who reviewed the 5210 said they are amateurs at car repair and could use this scanner to read codes and work on their vehicles. During our testing, we likewise found the device easy to use.

However, keep in mind this OBD2 scanner may not work with every car and that not all features work with newer, more advanced vehicles such as luxury and hybrid models.

Overall Rating4 out of 5
Ease of Use4
Customer Satisfaction4
Data Collection Capabilities3.5

If you need an even cheaper OBD2 scanner and don’t require the advanced features included with the CarScan Advisor 5210 code scanner, you might consider our budget pick: the Foxwell NT301 OBD2 scanner. If you want a code reader with more functions, check out the BlueDriver Bluetooth Pro OBDII Scan Tool for iPhone and Android.

Why You Can Trust Us

Each year, we test over 350 auto products on vehicles and in our testing lab. Our team of product testers thoroughly researches top products, unboxes and puts our hands on each component, and tests the items on real vehicles before making recommendations to readers.

We publish hundreds of product and service reviews to bring car enthusiasts detailed guides on automotive tools, detailing kits, car seats, pet products, and much more.

Innova OBDII Scanner: FAQ

*Data accurate at time of publication.