why my OBDII Actron Scantool won't connect?

Dec 29, 2022
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new 2021 forester, 11,000 miles, oil pressure &level /coolant level / tires all OK. on christmas eve I got a check engine lite 'CEL" on w/ lots of other dashboard lites: RAB, Auto Start stop, icy road , ABS . the car had been parked in a heated garage, these lites all showed on startup. subaru's on line 'assistance' offered to tow it to a closed dealership, (no thanks. ) its engine started and car ran fine for next few days ( as I was not going to be car less for 4 days by towing it into the closed dealership ) note also that there are about 1000 diagnostic codes 'DTC s' w a steady check engine lite, and only a few are real emergencies requiring a tow (usually signaled by the C E L check engine lite flashing. ) . a sometimes CEL results from your not properly tightening the gas cap.

I have a top quality Actron OBDII 9680 OBD II code reader,. I try to connect my scanner but when I press the keyless start button to ACC mode ---w/o starting engine , ie without my foot on the brake , the scanner won't connect.

the white OBD II 16 pin data link connector pins all look straight and fine, and my scanner fits into the subaru port.

I really don t want to drive 50 miles to a subaru dealer to read this CEL code. any advice on how to connect my scanner and read what's going on will save our holiday week (4 kids home, new forester w CEL on. .

the Haynes manual has 4 pages of trouble codes. I want to know which one it is nd my scanner will tell me if I can only get it connected.

all thoughts welcome.
OBD II will never offer all the network faults installed in that model.
Read the attachment or Start the engine to access OBD II faults.
Providing PINs 4 and 5 (Ground) and PIN 16 (Battery Power) are working, the tool should connect.
In other words, without the brake applied > the button needs to applied to the ON position.


  • 2021_FORESTER_GSG_Ignition.pdf
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thanks! when I was connecting my OBD II for the 1st time , the problem is that my OBD II wants Key On Engine Off KOEO mode, which I now know on the pushbutton ignition of my 2021 forester is , press the start button without depressing brake pedal to go in to acc mode.

my 2021 forester is throwing repeat MIL lites each time showing it's a 'loose gas cap. ' this happens almost every time we get gas and every family member knows to r early tighten then cap. However-- no joy. the DTC and MIL keep showing up randomly. without my OBD II being able to diagnose the check engine lite as a loose cap and then clear the MIL, we have to drive to the dealer to reset and tun off the MIL lite. our dealer charges $179 for a 'diagnostic ( and my OBD II Actron 9680 cost less than that --ordered 2 years straight from Actron Bosch. ) We do a lot of long distance trips and I've got to get the OBD II working on the subaru.

there is a procedure AAA tow drivers use to clear the MIL, which my OBD II is capable of doing once I get it properly connected. thanks for the advice, will pos results here.

Mitch M
'loose gas cap' is not the best description, the PXXXX code offers different details.
Loose gas cap can also mean that the magnet inside the gas cap is not activating the "reed switch" near the filler neck (if installed). Over tightening is also not the best practice, tighten till the "ratcheting" is heard or felt is the best practice.
There can also be a leak in the EVAP system, the PXXXX code offers the correct details.

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