The Student Room Group

Black Box Blocking OBD Port

Hi everyone, so straight to the point I have a black box insurance policy. I have no intention of defrauding the insurer or anything like that, however the black box is in the OBD port. My car recently got a check engine light, I don't suspect it's anything serious but I wanted to plug it into my OBD reader to quickly check what it is and potentially clear it (rather than having to pay lots of money for a mechanic to do the exact same thing).

I'm obviously not allowed to unplug the black box at any point, but it is using and blocking the OBD port (it didn't come with a Y-splitter or anything like that) so what am I supposed to do? Is there another way to access the port? Or can I call the company and let them know ahead of time to unplug it briefly?

Thanks!
Reply 1
Original post by Yakkk
Hi everyone, so straight to the point I have a black box insurance policy. I have no intention of defrauding the insurer or anything like that, however the black box is in the OBD port. My car recently got a check engine light, I don't suspect it's anything serious but I wanted to plug it into my OBD reader to quickly check what it is and potentially clear it (rather than having to pay lots of money for a mechanic to do the exact same thing).

I'm obviously not allowed to unplug the black box at any point, but it is using and blocking the OBD port (it didn't come with a Y-splitter or anything like that) so what am I supposed to do? Is there another way to access the port? Or can I call the company and let them know ahead of time to unplug it briefly?

Thanks!

That's a ridiculous installation method! Name and shame the insurer.
Reply 2
Blocking as in it’s plugged into OBD2? If so I 2nd IWMTom’s comment that’s seriously crap setup - on modern cars there’s been reports of weird and irritatingly intermittent electronic issues caused by OBD2 readers permanently plugged into the port on modern cars as the port isn’t designed for constant use (so manufacturers claim anyway).

For your actual problem you’ll need to look in your policy details and if there’s nothing there contact your insurer - I would hope they’re not going to penalise you for unplugging to pull codes but who knows. Hopefully it’s not caused by the unit itself.
Reply 3
Original post by virgil1
Blocking as in it’s plugged into OBD2? If so I 2nd IWMTom’s comment that’s seriously crap setup - on modern cars there’s been reports of weird and irritatingly intermittent electronic issues caused by OBD2 readers permanently plugged into the port on modern cars as the port isn’t designed for constant use (so manufacturers claim anyway).

For your actual problem you’ll need to look in your policy details and if there’s nothing there contact your insurer - I would hope they’re not going to penalise you for unplugging to pull codes but who knows. Hopefully it’s not caused by the unit itself.


Original post by IWMTom
That's a ridiculous installation method! Name and shame the insurer.

It's MyPolicy! They do seem kinda **** but they were just the cheapest available sadly. I think I'll have to call them and see what they can do about it since this just doesn't make sense. Regardless of if I do it myself or a mechanic, sooner or later someone will need to use that OBD port.
Reply 4
Original post by Yakkk
It's MyPolicy! They do seem kinda **** but they were just the cheapest available sadly. I think I'll have to call them and see what they can do about it since this just doesn't make sense. Regardless of if I do it myself or a mechanic, sooner or later someone will need to use that OBD port.

It's likely that they're only actually making use of two pins, power and ground. I'd hazard a guess that it's easier and cheaper than getting an installer out to wire it in elsewhere. Still.. very poor..
Reply 5
Original post by IWMTom
It's likely that they're only actually making use of two pins, power and ground. I'd hazard a guess that it's easier and cheaper than getting an installer out to wire it in elsewhere. Still.. very poor..

Probably also only usually connected to cars not in warranty as I know as a start Volvo will try to blame non-Volvo kit plugged into OBD for electrical oddities.
Reply 6
Original post by Yakkk
Hi everyone, so straight to the point I have a black box insurance policy. I have no intention of defrauding the insurer or anything like that, however the black box is in the OBD port. My car recently got a check engine light, I don't suspect it's anything serious but I wanted to plug it into my OBD reader to quickly check what it is and potentially clear it (rather than having to pay lots of money for a mechanic to do the exact same thing).

I'm obviously not allowed to unplug the black box at any point, but it is using and blocking the OBD port (it didn't come with a Y-splitter or anything like that) so what am I supposed to do? Is there another way to access the port? Or can I call the company and let them know ahead of time to unplug it briefly?

Thanks!


you can do it quickly! My friend has one and sometimes goes for entire drives without it plugged in - they usually send a notification to her phone saying to plug it back in - nothing major (except for being uninsured) **. If you're just checking codes you'll be good.

** Don't do this - I've enabled a lot of questionable things on this forum, but don't unplug your black box and go for a drive
(edited 3 years ago)
Reply 7
Original post by virgil1
Probably also only usually connected to cars not in warranty as I know as a start Volvo will try to blame non-Volvo kit plugged into OBD for electrical oddities.

Volvo's propiatory VIDA DICE system drives me ****ing insane - the number of times I've needed to clear my SRS light after modifying something, or wanted to find out why the check engine light has come back on, but been unable to without spending nearly £200 on a full kit
Reply 8
Original post by roo02
you can do it quickly! My friend has one and sometimes goes for entire drives without it plugged in - they usually send a notification to her phone saying to plug it back in - nothing major (except for being uninsured) **. If you're just checking codes you'll be good.

** Don't do this - I've enabled a lot of questionable things on this forum, but don't unplug your black box and go for a drive

You've re-entered the list of people I don't hate.
Reply 9
Original post by IWMTom
You've re-entered the list of people I don't hate.

Get in
How did you get on with calling MyPolicy about this? I have exactly the same problem but I cannot get through to them and the garage need to access the port! This is causing me a massive amount of stress now
Bump
Original post by Bloodybigtiger
Bump

Why?
Original post by IWMTom
Why?

Because I have the exact same situation and the original question hasn’t been answered
Original post by Bloodybigtiger
Because I have the exact same situation and the original question hasn’t been answered

Yes it has.
I also encountered the same problem, I have a more silly way, I wrapped the OBD with tinfoil, so that the signal is all wrapped.:colondollar::colone:

Original post by Yakkk
Hi everyone, so straight to the point I have a black box insurance policy. I have no intention of defrauding the insurer or anything like that, however the black box is in the OBD port. My car recently got a check engine light, I don't suspect it's anything serious but I wanted to plug it into my OBD reader to quickly check what it is and potentially clear it (rather than having to pay lots of money for a mechanic to do the exact same thing).

I'm obviously not allowed to unplug the black box at any point, but it is using and blocking the OBD port (it didn't come with a Y-splitter or anything like that) so what am I supposed to do? Is there another way to access the port? Or can I call the company and let them know ahead of time to unplug it briefly?

Thanks!

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