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DTC (Diagnostic Trouble Codes) Explained | Smart Servicing Centre

What is a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC)?

Trouble Codes, generally speaking, are codes that the computer diagnostic system has in a given car. The system displays a certain code depending on the type of problem that the system can detect from inside an auto-mobile.

Troubleshooting codes are used to help car mechanics and owners with extensive car maintenance experience understand car problems and where the root of the car problem or problems may lie.These codes should be used in conjunction with the car manual to determine what should be examined and tested to properly diagnose a car problem, either using professional OBD 2.

What are the things to remember while using OBD codes?

To better understand the possible causes of car problems, see your car manual. Parts or components of a car should not be replaced without reference in your manual, even if you have a clear identification of the DTC and what it describes. For example, if a DTC notifies you of a sensor problem, the solution to that problem might not be to replace the sensor, but rather to replace another component too, you may even need to repair or replace only the sensor wiring for the problem to be resolved.

DTCs can also be triggered by faults in the foreseeable future, giving you inaccurate trouble codes or notifying you of a problem that may not exist with the car inFor example, a confusing MAF sensor could make the car's system believe that the car is having fuel mixing problems, when in reality the sensor is causing the car to avoid unpredictable and unexpected DTCs, as well as to make sure you fully understand what could be wrong with your car as problems occur, buy a good OBD 2 scanner that is programmed to help car owners and technicians to better understand a specific car problem or issues.

What is the explanation of dtc fault codes?

DTCs come in a five character string. A code, for example, could be "P0806".The first character will be P (powertrain), B (body), C (chassis), or N (network). This character will help you determine which of the four main parts of the car is to blame. The second character will be 0 or 1, (0 indicates that it is a generic OBD 2 code) and 1 means that it is a unique car manufacturer code.


The third character can be one of many letters or numbers. This character list includes 1 (fuel and air metering), 2 (fuel and air injector circuit), 3 (ignition), 4 (auxiliary emission control), 5 (vehicle speed and idle control systems) , 7, 8 or 9 (transmission) and A, B or C (hybrid drive).


The fourth and fifth characters in the code represent a specific description of the problem with the part and the system in question. These are numbered by "00", "01", "02" and so on.


In total, there are over 5,000 generic, manufacturer-exclusive OBD 2 troubleshooting codes out there. You can refer to our DTC master list to help you better understand your specific car problem based on your code.

fuel filter

What is the difference between generic and manufacturer-specific dtc code.

As explained above, general DTCs start with P0XXX, and manufacturer-exclusive DTCs start with P1XXX. Generic DTCs are defined in the standards for OBD 2 and EOBD 2, and apply to all official automobile manufacturers.

However, manufacturer-exclusive DTCs are not available in generic code databases, and are instead created and defined by a car manufacturer for all the cars they make.

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