Despite not learning to drive until I was 21, I’ve always had a real passion for cars and with my tendency to get bored it means there’s been a few over the years.
Company cars aside, every single car I bought has had it’s place and purpose within the Palmer house hold. There’s been a Fiat Punto, 2 seater BMW, big Mercedes Jeep plus many more to today’s date where I have a company Focus and a personal family car.
You’d think having so many cars I’d actually know what I was doing but this is the problem. You spend so much time driving them that you never have time to learn how to fix them!
Now I’m not a noob when it comes to tire changes or washer fluid etc, but with cars being powerful computers on wheels, there’s only so far a simple spanner and prayers will go these days.
I’m no stranger to diagnostic equipment. I remember paying £40 an hour for a guy to come and tell me my car wasn’t working and the problem was an E35 mixed with an E40 error code. This meant it could be one of a million things leaving me with no idea! Thinking back I think he just had a reader and no mechanic skills.
So when Engie offered me the chance to review their Bluetooth Sensor, Companion App and Service I thought why not this is me to a tee.
My company car is sorted, if it breaks down I have a number to call or I’ll be off work waiting for a pick up! Easy. But as I mentioned above, I’ve got a family wagon that’s more soccer moms car and if that breaks down we’re stranded! Have you ever been stranded anywhere with a screaming one year old and an impatient 14 year old before?
Breaking down is normally the last resort from an issue. We’ve all had the dreaded yellow light on the dashboard engine icon before. It’s one of those nightmare situations. You’ll drive on and hope that the light will go off.
Speaking from experience, when the light goes on stop and get professional mechanical help!
In my old Mazda RX8, the light came on and it was over heating. By carrying on driving not only did I make it worse but ended up blowing the engine. There was a problem with the water pump that had I have stopped, could have been fixed. A very costly mistake!
For me it was a time issue. By the time I had found a local garage, booked time off work, taken it in for diagnostics, re-booked for work doing without any idea of the price, I’ll have been out of work for a few days and the cost would have kept rising.
So not only is this a device which can easily give you diagnosis of over 10,000 car faults and reveal what’s up with your motor but with the accompanying app connecting you to certified mechanics, you can gain real time quotes based on the problem.
Having a quick look under the dashboard you’ll see a port that looks like an old printer cable serial connector. That looks like this:
The Engie Device is a simple push on to connect, there’s only one way for it to be pushed so you can’t possibly connect it wrong.
In my family car there’s an Android Headunit so the girls in the back can have movies and I’ve got integrated sat nav. What it also means is that if you’ve got an android version you can connect to your head unit like this:
Having the IOS app it literally was a couple of clicks to find the device, setup and start rocking. Here’s a few of the screens once I finished scanning the car:
It’s really that simple! You’ve then got a full list of nearby mechanics based on your location and can then go through to them to discuss. I’m not sure what happens when you have a fault but I’ve been told, Once a specific malfunction is detected, Engie will alert the best local repair shops who will assess the problem and submit independent quotes for the consumer to review in real time, saving drivers money and empowering them with knowledge and confidence when negotiating costs with a mechanic.There are some tests that require the car to be stationary, switched on etc. It’s really clear what you need to do and thankfully once I completed, I got green ticks on these too.
Luckily when connected to my car, there wasn’t any faults so I can’t tell you exactly how that process goes but from the efficiency of the install, synching of my phone and scanning I’m sure it’s just as seamless. If you’re like me and a car parker wanderer, the app also remembers where you’ve parked the car and how much fuel you’re using.
If only they could drive the car too :)
I was fortunate to be given a review sample of Engie. If you’re looking to gain more control over your car and never hear the sharp intake of breath when receiving a quote again or feel taken advantage of, this is the answer for you and your car.
Visit their website to see Engie and it’s full capacity of features http://www.engieapp.com/