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I've got a 94 T-bird. Have a CarMD scanner that seems to work on it, but it hasn't shown any codes on it. It says to just plug it into the port with the ignition in the run position. Didn't mention anything about having the engine run. Was wondering if there's a newer scanner available for our Birds that would let you know what's going on with the engine running. I use Mac computers so the scanner needs to work with that or be a web-based one. Don't want to spend a whole bunch. The car has 65,000 miles on it and am wondering if the O2 sensors need to be replaced. Would a scanner say if they need replaced? Do our Birds have 3 or 4 O2 sensors?
 

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2 on a 1994 TBird; since you mention the CarMD scanner, I presume it's a 4.6 .

Replace them. At their age, they won't toss a code per se, but they're "lazy" and you're not getting the best performance or fuel economy.

RwP
 
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The NTK ones on RA will last longer and work better than Bosch. They're the oem.
 
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2 on a 1994 TBird; since you mention the CarMD scanner, I presume it's a 4.6 .

Replace them. At their age, they won't toss a code per se, but they're "lazy" and you're not getting the best performance or fuel economy.

RwP
Thanks for letting me know. Yes, my Bird has a 4.6. Sorry I forgot to mention that.

The NTK ones on RA will last longer and work better than Bosch. They're the oem.
I assume RA is Rock Auto. I've never ordered parts from them. Are they reputable? Thanks for letting me know what brand to get. I was going to get Motorcraft, but since you say NTK is OEM I'll look into them.
 

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Four on a 4.6, two pre cat, two to monitor catalyst efficiency
Even on a 1994?

OK; didn't expect that they were actually monitoring the cats.

RwP
 

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Not sure about what the 94's computer capabilities are, but the best scanner for the money that I have experience with is the FORScan (Free on Windows, $5.99 for iOS app) and the OBDILink EX (about $49 on Amazon). Forscan is as close as FORD IDS as you can get. IT works with all FORD vehicles so if you have other vehicles it is a plus.
 

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I use Torque Pro and it works well and even scans live o2 data. Not sure what I'd be looking at / look for, but it's there.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
2 on a 1994 TBird; since you mention the CarMD scanner, I presume it's a 4.6 .

Replace them. At their age, they won't toss a code per se, but they're "lazy" and you're not getting the best performance or fuel economy.

RwP
Thanks for recommending to replace them. Will need to do that. Unfortunately, we have about a foot of snow and my Bird can't move. Will have to wait until Spring to have her worked on. I'm physically unable to replace them and don't have a hoist anyway.

Not sure about what the 94's computer capabilities are, but the best scanner for the money that I have experience with is the FORScan (Free on Windows, $5.99 for iOS app) and the OBDILink EX (about $49 on Amazon). Forscan is as close as FORD IDS as you can get. IT works with all FORD vehicles so if you have other vehicles it is a plus.
Thanks for the advice on the FORScan. Do you know if it would report anything wrong even if no code comes up? The "check engine" light is not on. I just got the 1994 Ford OBDII Service Manual today from eBay and hope between that and a newer scanner I will able to pinpoint what might be wrong with the car. Sometimes the car would shift weird and the tach would go up to about 3000 rpm and then back down. HOPE it's not the transmission. Need to have the transmission fluid (Mercon V) and filter replaced again (when I had it done the mechanic didn't know or see that the transmission has an access plug on the bell housing and the torque converter has a drain plug.) Had asked the mechanic if the MLPS was the newer type and he said yes, but it didn't show any codes. I really don't know if he checked to see if it had the red gasket on it or not. IF it was replaced before with the newer one, it still could be bad. Would the FORScan say if the ignition coil packs or MAF sensor are bad? I've got a multimeter, but don't understand how to use it.

I use Torque Pro and it works well and even scans live o2 data. Not sure what I'd be looking at / look for, but it's there.
Thanks for your recommendation. Do you know if Torque Pro would show any problems even though the "check engine" light isn't on and no codes came up with my CarMD scanner?
 

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Thanks for your recommendation. Do you know if Torque Pro would show any problems even though the "check engine" light isn't on and no codes came up with my CarMD scanner?
One thing Torque with the proper ELM327/Bluetooth adapter will do, will be to allow you to datalog what's happening.

RwP
 
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The CarMD scanner does work, but its basically the PlaySkool of scanners. I ended up getting it as a gift years ago and played around with it and realized it sucked and put it back in the box and there it sits, lol.
 

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Do you know if it would report anything wrong even if no code comes up?
Forscan will read DTC's as well as read in real time PIDs that are available for the vehicle EEC. It even reads more current CAN BUS messages between the different modules as newer vehicles have more than one brain. Short answer is no it will not say hey your O2's are bad but it will let you read voltage, current for all 4 (assuming a v8) in a table form or a graph form so you can watch the switching of the downstream from near zero to < 0.5v in a nice little sine wave if it is ok or if not ok it will be hung low, high or erratic. You get to choose from available PIDs out of a table by selecting and then run to datalog. You kinda need to know a little about the vehicles computer strategy to know how the Mass air, idle control etc work if you get lean codes. It will tell you which cylinder is misfiring and how often it is. It has what is called MODE 6 which will report what the computer is monitoring and if it has tripped a code or is about to. It shows Long & Short term fuel trim, fuel pressure, other helpful parameters like MAP, egr, vapor management. It takes time to "Learn" what is what but once you get it it becomes second nature. It has a routine to bleed ABS on newer vehicles (saved me from going to the dealer when I got frustrated with a defective Pump controller on a 2013 Edge).
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The CarMD scanner does work, but its basically the PlaySkool of scanners. I ended up getting it as a gift years ago and played around with it and realized it sucked and put it back in the box and there it sits, lol.
Thanks for letting me know that the CarMD isn't that whoopy of a scanner.

One thing Torque with the proper ELM327/Bluetooth adapter will do, will be to allow you to datalog what's happening.

RwP
Am glad that it can do a datalog, as I would like to try that and then see what happens when I drive the car. Would then take a printout of the log to my mechanic and go from there.

Forscan will read DTC's as well as read in real time PIDs that are available for the vehicle EEC. It even reads more current CAN BUS messages between the different modules as newer vehicles have more than one brain. Short answer is no it will not say hey your O2's are bad but it will let you read voltage, current for all 4 (assuming a v8) in a table form or a graph form so you can watch the switching of the downstream from near zero to < 0.5v in a nice little sine wave if it is ok or if not ok it will be hung low, high or erratic. You get to choose from available PIDs out of a table by selecting and then run to datalog. You kinda need to know a little about the vehicles computer strategy to know how the Mass air, idle control etc work if you get lean codes. It will tell you which cylinder is misfiring and how often it is. It has what is called MODE 6 which will report what the computer is monitoring and if it has tripped a code or is about to. It shows Long & Short term fuel trim, fuel pressure, other helpful parameters like MAP, egr, vapor management. It takes time to "Learn" what is what but once you get it it becomes second nature. It has a routine to bleed ABS on newer vehicles (saved me from going to the dealer when I got frustrated with a defective Pump controller on a 2013 Edge).
Thank you for your detailed info. Yes, my T-Bird has a 4.6 V8. I've got an Auto Tech degree, but it's from 1979, so have been trying to learn bits and pieces on computerized vehicle stuff since my Bird is a 94 and I have a 2000 GMC Sierra Pickup. Some of it makes my eyes glaze over. I feel like I have to be my own advocate on my vehicles on what might be wrong with them. Taking the Bird to one mechanic was a waste of time and money. My sister took her 2004 GMC to the dealer to be checked out for a limp mode problem. $90 later they said they couldn't find anything wrong. Guess what, the Pickup still was acting up! I told my BIL to replace the PCV valve (never had been done) and to clean the MAF sensor. He had a scanner on the vehicle while driving it and don't know if any codes came up. After I suggested cleaning the MAF sensor, which he did, the Pickup is now running fine!!! I knew taking it to the dealer would be a waste of time and money!!! I just got a copy of the Ford OBDII Shop manual and it looks interesting but also partly complicated. Thought it would come in handy for my other mechanic to look at in case he would need to. It was only $30 and thought it was a good investment. We lost our Ford dealer in the small town I live in and the next closest one is about 30 miles away and I'm unable to go there.
 
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