ScanTool

Top 5 Car Related Gadgets

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What do you do if your car is a bit, well …old? You can buy the latest fancy gadget and totally keep up with the Jones’s next door without having to fork out on an the expense of a new car. Take a look at the following top apps and devices available so that you can modernise your motor even if the chassis might be falling apart.

OBD-II Scan Tool

An OBD-11 scan tool will do what the typical modern mechanic does when he links his scanner to the car’s onboard computer in order to find out what ailments the car has. Of course knowing whether the oil pressure is too low or there is a possible leak in the head gasket is great but it’s another kettle of fish entirely to actually fix the problem.

Simply purchase an OBD-II adapter online and connect it with an OBD-II accommodating car, which is most modern vehicles and you can then use an app such as the Torque Pro, to learn about the state of your car’s health, without the fear that you’re getting ripped off by a mechanic.

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Smartphone Integration

If a car has smartphone integration – think certain Toyota models and the Pandora in the US – the information from the driver’s smartphone appears automatically on the dashboard’s LCD screen. The information can be controlled via the car’s instrument panel and some commands are even voice-activated. Sounds a little bit like Night Rider and David Haselhoff!

There are kits available, which will allow you to control your smartphone’s music selection through your car’s audio system and you can even watch videos on the LCD screen.

iCarBlackBox

Motor insurance claims can be drawn-out and indecisive affairs, especially if the ‘other guy’ is wavering the truth about an accident that you were involved in. With the iCarBlackBox you can record such vital information for your insurer’s perusal. Mount your smartphone on the windscreen of your car and when loaded with the iCarBlackBox it will record braking, speed and indicator use, etc. It can even play back the whole accident on video and prove who did what and when.

Could prove an intuitive investment for just 69 pence!

iCarBlackBox

Confused.com Parking app

How many times have we been driving round a city trying to locate a place to park? Such a dilemma recently happened to me in Brighton, where due to an inability to find a car park, I drove around for the best part of an hour and then copped for a £80 parking ticket as I ended up parking illegally.

Confused.com Parking app eradicates such dilemmas. Simply download this app and find the most convenient and least expensive places to park within a city – A potent money – and stress – saving tool indeed.

Parking app

Viper Smartstart GPS

A real James Bond car gadget, the Viber Smartstart does much more than simply directing you to a parking spot. An alarm goes off when you reach certain pre-programmed zones and likewise if you go faster than you should. You can control many of your car’s functions from miles away via your smartphone, such as turn the radio on or open a window.

You can even start your car up in winter from the comfort your eleventh floor apartment and by the time you appear out of the lift the car is warmed up nicely and ready to go! You can even find out if you left a door unlocked. Although these smart little tricks will require an ongoing subscription. There is a basic non-subscription model for a little over half the price as the subscription package, but it only works within the Bluetooth range.

Smartstart