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How to Use a Borescope to Repair Your Car | Optics and Lab Equipment

How to Use a Borescope to Repair Your Car

Last Updated: 22.10.19


Repairing your car can be a difficult task, especially since there are so many hard-to-reach places inside the engine and not only. You can always have a mechanic take a look at your car, but that can end up costing more money than it should if the repair your car needs is minor and doesn’t require a professional hand.

You’re paying for more than just the repair work, as you also pay for having the situation diagnosed and for a professional to look at it. But now you can eliminate extra expenses by finding what’s wrong with your car on your own.

For minor repairs or only cleaning tasks, you can save up a pretty dollar. But how can you do that? The solution is simpler than you think: a borescope can reach when your hands and eyes can’t.

What’s a borescope?

From the first glance, you will realize that a borescope is quite a simple tool. The technology that’s not visible is complex, though, but by no means should that scare you off. A borescope is made from a long cable made with fiber-optic wires, and at one end it has a small camera, while at the other, a USB connection allows you to hook it up with a mobile device.

That last aspect, in itself, makes a borescope such a handy tool for auto repairs. The camera at the end will take pictures and even record videos, and will deliver everything to the screen of your phone or tablet. Even professionals use such devices for diagnosing car troubles, and now you can do the same.


What can a borescope be used for?

There are many parts of a car that cannot be inspected with the naked eye. For instance, fuel nozzles, tubing, cylinders, hydraulic parts, and valve seats can be checked using such a specific tool. While some things, such as some build up on the inside of the engine, may not seem like much, if they are overlooked, they can turn into more significant problems.

For proper car maintenance and small repairs or cleaning tasks you can perform in your garage, a borescope is a handy, if not indispensable tool. The defects that may lay dormant inside the car engine can cause a severe failure when you least expect it, which is why it is so important that you run occasional diagnostics on your car.


Even auto repair technicians use such tools

Typically, a mechanic would need to take the engine apart to figure out what’s wrong. Such techniques are invasive, time-consuming, and can also add up to the final costs of your repair. That is why investing in a borescope is an excellent idea.

There are very cheap models available that come equipped with everything you need in such a tool, but, if you choose to invest in a costlier model, know that you will cover that expense in no time by saving up money on professional repairs.

How correctly do you use a borescope for car repairs?

It is, actually, quite simple. Seeing that the borescope comes equipped with a long cable, all you have to do, after hooking up the tool with your phone or tablet, via the USB connection, is to stick the end with the camera inside the engine and start scouting around for problems. You can, this way, operate in the same way a doctor would use an android endoscope to diagnose a patient.

Make sure to take pictures, and record videos that you can later show to a mechanic so that you can speed up the repair process, in case the repairs needed are beyond your area of expertise. You will be more than pleased with how much you will be able to save in terms of auto repairs in the long run.


What are some aspects that your borescope should have?

First of all, make sure that the model you get has a pretty decent cable. While you don’t need a lot of length to reach inside the engine, it is a good idea to ensure that manipulating the cable will not be difficult. A model that has some kind of articulation in the cable also helps.

Seeing how you will have to steer the tip around and guide the camera toward the areas with problems, that’s the most critical aspect.

The probe needs to be resistant to water, oil, and diesel fuel, or to any other type of fuel you use for your car. You surely don’t want your borescope to become unusable from the first try. Don’t forget that the camera must have pretty strong illumination.

A LED system is usually placed around the camera to ensure that there is plenty of light to examine the area thoroughly. Seeing how the inside of an engine cannot receive light from outside sources, you should always consider a model with pretty good illumination.

The quality of the camera used is something to consider, too. Manufacturers offer the possibility to examine all the technical aspects when reading the descriptions they put at the clients’ disposal. The more accurate the pictures and videos you can record with the help of the borescope, the better. As automotive engines can have many hard-to-reach areas and small components, such traits will surely help you.

What applications can borescopes have?

If you decide to purchase a borescope to help you with diagnosing car problems, you will be pleased to learn that the same tool can be used for other practical stuff, as well. For instance, you can examine the plumbing in your home. Or you can use it in any cramped places where there’s an issue, like water infiltrations, without a problem.

All in all, a borescope is a pretty sound investment. Seeing how you can find many that are sold for low prices, there is nothing that should stand in the way between you and being able to save up some money on auto repairs and many other things.



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