Having a good OBDII scan tool can go a long way to help troubleshoot problems with a vehicle.
Volkswagen’s 1996 and newer all have an OBDII port to tap into with a scan tool which will read and clear engine codes and more.
Most any low-cost scan tool will read the basic codes but will not be able to read more complex engine, transmission, and SRS errors.
Volkswagen’s have proprietary codes that go beyond the basic OBDII errors and can help to troubleshoot problems that are otherwise hard to find.
Do OBDII Scan tools Work with Volkswagen?
Yes, Volkswagen’s have a dedicated OBDII port on all 1996 and newer vehicles.
They also have extended codes that can be read called VAG COM.
What Does VAG COM VCDS Mean?
VAG-COM stands for Volkswagen Auto Group and includes all VW cars able to communicate with the extended OBD protocols.
VCDS stands for VAG-COM Diagnostic System and is another name for the same thing.
VAG-COM extends the error codes that are not in the standard OBDII code list.
For example transmission codes that are Volkswagen specific or ABS codes will need a VAG-COM scan tool to read and clear the errors.
What is a VAG COM VCDS Scan Tool?
A VAG COM scan tool can read and clear codes that are Volkswagen specific.
This includes Audi, Passat, Jetta, Golf, Tiguan and more.
This post contains affiliate links that helps to support this site.
Brian’s Garage Picks for Best Best OBDII VAG-COM VCDS Scan Tools
|Name||OBDII standard Protocols||VAG-COM Protocols||Bluetooth|
|FOXWELL NT510 Pro||Yes||Yes||No|
- XTOOL Vag401
- OBDeleven PRO Bluetooth Adapter
- FOXWELL NT510 Pro
The XTOOL Vag401 can not only scan the standard OBDII codes but also the VW extended VAG-COM codes.
It is compatible with a wide range of Volkswagen’s from a Jetta to Audi.
It is a low-cost unit with a simple layout with many features that makes it worth a look for those on a budget.
Bluetooth OBDII dongles have become very popular since they are low-cost units that with the right app work very well.
The OBDeleven PRO Adapter is one such unit built specifically for VW’s.
This makes it another nice unit for those on a budget and looking for a Vag-Com compatible scan tool.
Keep in mind Bluetooth scan tools need to Pair with an Android smartphone.
Also, the app used is what makes the unit able to read and erase codes.
The OBDeleven PRO has basic features for free but the app does charge more for the advanced features.
The FOXWELL NT510 Pro is built for the professional mechanic looking for one of the best VW scan tools available.
It has many built-in features from reading ABS and SRS codes to resetting the transmission light.
The FOXWELL NT510 Pro is not a budget unit and does cost more but a nice unit to have when troubleshooting a VW.
There is no-doubt many good OBDII scan tools available for Volkswagen’s vehicles with those above simply some of my picks.
As good as any tool is there is always something that can be improved but new OBDII units are a must have when troubleshooting modern cars and trucks.
Have you found and used a good Vag-Com scan tool? Let us know in the comments below.