FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

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About the Adapter

What is it and what does it do?

The BlueFire Data Adapter is an electronic device that connects to your motorhome or truck's or on-board computers (ECMs) and transmits information wirelessly to the BlueFire App (Motorhomes or Trucks). The Adapter is constructed of industrial grade materials, will withstand abuse, and is weather resistant. It currently communicates with the following ECMs but has the capability to support others:

  • Engine
  • Cab (Body)
  • Instrument Panel
  • ABS Brakes
  • Transmission
  • Others

What types of vehicles does it work with?

The Adapter plugs into the diagnostic port of a Class A motorhome or any Class 3 through 8 heavy duty truck that supports the J1939 and J1708 formats using either the 9 pin or 6 pin Deutsch plug. The Adapter also supports the automotive OBD-II standard in a limited fashion.

How do I plug it in?

The Adapter has a locking ring connector intended to keep the Adapter in place during operation of the vehicle. It is designed to be plugged in and stay plugged in. To plug in the Adapter, align it with the diagnostic port and rotate the adapter slowly until it drops into place. It won't drop very far. Then rotate the locking ring while pushing on the Adapter. When the locking ring finds an opening, the Adapter will slide all the way into the port. Push on the Adapter and twist the locking ring so that it locks in place.

For those who want to use the Adapter on multiple vehicles (eg. maintenance personnel) and find the locking ring a nuisance, modifications can be made to the plug by cutting the ring off or filing down the three nipples inside the ring. Please note that this will void the warranty.

I see that the Adapter has multiple colored LEDs. What do the colors mean?

The Adapter has three colors, Red, Green and Blue. In general, Red is for the Adapter, Green is for the vehicle connection, and Blue is for the Bluetooth connection. The LEDs can either be solid on or they can blink. The red LED can also pulsate. Below is a description of their meanings:

  • Solid Red - The Adapter is updating its memory. DO NOT unplug the adapter otherwise undesirable results may occur.
  • Blinking Red - The Adapter is waiting for a factory reset disconnect (see Factory Reset below).
  • Blinking Red, Green, and Blue - The Adapter has been reset by the BlueFire App and needs to be powered cycle (unpluged and plugged back in).
  • Blinking Blue - The Adapter is ready and waiting for you to connect the BlueFire App.
  • Blinking Green - The Adapter is ready and connected to the BlueFire App but is waiting for you to turn the key on.
  • Solid Blue - The Adapter is connected to the BlueFire App and communicating with the on-board computers.

Important Note - Periodically while using the BlueFire App, the Adapter will need to update its memory, in which case you will see it go Solid Red. DO NOT unplug the adapter when it is Solid Red, otherwise you risk bricking the Adapter.

How do I do a Factory Reset?

You can reset the Adapter back to the settings it had when you first received it (Factory Reset). Here's how:

  1. Plug the Adapter in.
  2. Wait for it to start Blinking Red. This will occur one minute after plugging it in.
  3. Unplug the Adapter while it's Blinking Red.
  4. Plug the Adapter back in. It will start Blinking Red right away.
  5. Unplug the Adapter again while it's Blinking Red.
  6. When you plug the Adapter in for the third time, it will perform a Factory Reset. The Adapter will go solid Red and then start Blinking Blue.

You can also reset the Adapter from the BlueFire App. After connecting the Adapter, go to the Settings page and check 'Reset to Factory Settings'. When you exit the App, both the Adapter and App will be reset to Factory Settings. Note, that with firmware 3.17 you will need to unplug the Adapter and plug it back in.

Does the Adapter consume much power?

The Adapter consumes 75 mA of power during idle operation. There is a Sleep Mode that you can set using the BlueFire App that will reduce the current draw to 55 mA. When this option is selected, the Adapter will turn off the LEDs and go to sleep two minutes after the ignition is turned off and the BlueFire App has disconnected. The Adapter will wake up when the BlueFire App reconnects to it.

How does the Adapter communicate with the BlueFire App?

The Adapter uses Bluetooth to communicate with the BlueFire App. There are two different Bluetooth modules used in our Adapters - Bluetooth Classic and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). The Bluetooth Classic module is rectangular and the BLE module is square. You can see these modules through the translucent cap on the Adapter. The Bluetooth Classic module is used in the Android/Windows Adapters and the BLE module is used in the Apple/Android/Windows Adapters.

For Bluetooth Classic Adapters, your phone needs to be paired with the Adapter before the BlueFire App can connect to the it. This can be done ahead of time by you or the BlueFire App can pair it for you. The Bluetooth device name is BlueFire.

For BLE Adapters, pairing is not required. Note that you will not see the Adapter in the Bluetooth list of devices until after the BlueFire App connects to the Adapter in which case you will then see the Bluetooth device name of BlueFire LE.

When I plug the Adapter in, the LEDs are quite bright and distracting. Can I reduce the brightness or turn them off?

You can reduce the brightness of the LEDs but you cannot turn them off. To reduce the brightness, start the BlueFire App, go to Settings, and change the Led Brightness setting (not the App Brightness). Doing this is a good example of watching the Adapter update its memory. It will change the brightness, go Solid Red for a short time, then back to its previous state.

I just got this message when I started the BlueFire App saying a new firmware version is available. How do I update my Adapter's firmware?

Follow the steps below to update your Adapter's firmware:

  1. Check your current Hardware version by going to the About page. You need to be connected to the Adapter to see the Hardware version.
  2. If your Hardware version is 2.0 or lower, you need to send the Adapter to us for updating. Shop for Adapter Upgrades for instructions.
  3. If your Hardware version is 2.1 or higher, you can use a Windows PC to update the firmware. Download the firmware update program from our DropBox folder. The file to download will be BlueFireFWUpdate-vH.H-F.F where H.H is the hardware version and F.F is the firmware version. Follow the on-screen instructions. If you have any questions or problems, contact BlueFire Support. If you're uncomfortable updating the firmware yourself you can send the Adapter to us for updating.


About the BlueFire App

What is the BlueFire App and what does it do?

The BlueFire App is an Apple, Android, Amazon, and Windows 10 app that wirelessly connects to the BlueFire Data Adapter and displays information from the on-board computers (ECMs) for various functions.

A summary of the features the BlueFire App has is given below:

  • Custom Dash - Allows you to create a custom dashboard and display a variety of gauges and text data.
  • Trip Recording - Allows you to record trip information and compare it to previous trips.
  • Fuel Economy - Shows information to help you get more value from your driving.
  • Data Logging - Allows you to log selected data at a set interval to a .csv formatted file.
  • Vehicle Repair - Shows a multitude of information that can help determine the cause of a problem and then help you repair your vehicle.
  • Fault Diagnostics - Shows any and all faults (active and in-active) along with information to help repair them. Allows you to reset the faults after your have repaired them.

What mobile devices support the BlueFire Adapter and App?

For Android/Windows 10 Adapters, you must have an Android device running version 4.5+.

For Apple/Android/Windows 10 Adapters, you must have an Android device running version 6+ or one of the following Apple devices:

  • iPhone 4s or later
  • iPad Mini or later
  • iPad Air and Air 2
  • iPad (3rd gen) or later
  • iPad Pro 9.7, 11, or 12.9-inch
  • iPod Touch (5th gen) or later

All the Adapters will work with Windows 10.

Where do I get the BlueFire App?

The BlueFire App is availabe on all the device manufacturer's App stores. The Apps tab (next to the FAQ tab) will take you to where you can download and install the BlueFire Apps.

Along with the links to the App Stores, there is also a link to our Getting Started document. It is highly recommended to download this document and go through it completely.

I understand the Adapter uses Bluetooth to communicate with the BlueFire App. Do I need to pair my phone to the Adapter?

If you have an Apple/Android/Windows Adapter, then no you do not need to pair the BlueFire App with the Adapter. Note that you will not see the Adapter in the device's Bluetooth list until after you connect the BlueFire App, then you will see 'BlueFire LE' in the Bluetooth list.

If you have an Android/Windows Adapter, then yes you do have to pair it. You can either pair your mobile device to the Adapter yourself or let the BlueFire App pair it for you. However, it is recommended that you manually do the pairing. On some devices, the BlueFire App and Bluetooth pairing don't get along very well. If you have difficulty pairing an older Android phone follow these steps:

  1. Plug in the Adapter.
  2. Turn Bluetooth on.
  3. Go to your phone's Bluetooth Settings.
  4. Search for new Devices.
  5. Select BlueFire.
  6. Wait for pairing to finish.

You're now ready to start the BlueFire App and connect to the Adapter. Note that the BlueFire App remembers what state Bluetooth is in (on or off) when it starts and then returns Bluetooth to that state when the BlueFire App ends.

When can I use the BlueFire App?

You can start the BlueFire App anytime with or without the Adapter connected. When you start the BlueFire App it will look for the Adapter. If it cannot find the Adapter it will start up in Demo mode. This mode will allow you to use most of the functions but will only show information that is not real (demo data).

If you start the BlueFire App and the Adapter is plugged in, it will connect to the Adapter and start looking for vehicle information. If the ignition key is off, the BlueFire App will recognize this and not show any information. If the ignition key is on, the BlueFire App will start retrieving information and will function normally.

If the BlueFire App is functioning normally (ie. ignition key is on) and you turn the ignition off, the BlueFire App will recognize this and will remember the last information it retrieved. This information will be available on the BlueFire App until you close the BlueFire App on your phone. Note that information is only retrieved when you select a function and the function specific information is displayed.

It is recommended that if you are not using the BlueFire App that you close it. This will ensure that the BlueFire App is not consuming your phone's battery power needlessly.

What happens when I start the BlueFire App?

When you start the BlueFire App the Home page is displayed and the BlueFire App Logo is replaced with a twirling circle that shows the connecting status. It will go through the following states:

  1. Initializing - most likely you will not see this. It's pretty quick.
  2. Connecting - the BlueFire App is attempting to connect to an Adapter.
  3. Discovering (Android/Windows only) - the BlueFire App could not make a connection so it is now performing a Bluetooth Discovery.
  4. Connecting (Android/Windows only) - the Discovery found an Adapter and is trying to connect to it. If you have not manually paired with the Adapter, the BlueFire App will attempt to initiate pairing. Depending on your phone and the version of Android you have, this may or may not work. So it is recommended to manually pair with the Adapter before starting the BlueFire App.
  5. Authenticating - the BlueFire App is authenticating with the Adapter to ensure a proper secure connection.
  6. Retireving Data - The BlueFire App is retrieving initial settings from the Adapter.
  7. Connected - the BlueFire App has successfully connected to the Adapter.
  8. Not Connected - the BlueFire App was not able to connect to the Adapter for some reason. You can try again, power cycle the adapter, and/or reboot your mobile device.

If you get connected you're good to go. If you can't connect check your Adapter and the BlueFire App Settings for the correct Bluetooth option. If all else fails, contact BlueFire Support.

How do I navigate around the BlueFire App? Do you support swiping?

At this time we do not support swiping. This is a feature request we are looking at.

After starting the BlueFire App you navigate to a page by taping an icon on the Home page. From there you can go back with the standard Back button (or Back arrow in the upper left corner).

When you are in a page and want to go to another page, the Navigation Bar at the bottom of the page provides a quick way to get there without having to go back to the Home page. The Navigation Bar is scrollable so you can get to any of the pages.

To exit the BlueFire App, for Android users you must use the Back/Home button from the Home page. If you're deep into navigating pages, it is faster to tap the Home page icon in the Navigation Bar, then exit the BlueFire App with the Back/Home button. For Apple and Windows users, the normal app exiting can be used.

My screen on my phone is small and all the Home page icons are not displayed. What can I do to see them all?

When you have a smaller Android phone, all the icons may not be directly visible so you have to scroll down to see them. You can see more icons by removing the BlueFire App Logo from the Home page thus giving you more room for the icons. To remove the Logo follow this procedure:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Check the 'Do Not Show Logo' option.
  3. Return to Home page.

I'm concerned that others can connect to my adapter and see my data. What kind of security do you provide?

There are multiple levels of security. The most common is a User Name and Password.

The User Name is a 20 character name and the Password is a 12 character password. Both are case sensitive. If someone attempts to connect to your Adapter and doesn't have the correct User Name or Password in their BlueFire App, the App will reject the connection.

A factory reset will reset the User Name and Password.

To set the User Name and Password follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap on Security.
  3. Change your User Name and/or Password.
  4. Press Done.
  5. Return to Home page.
  6. You will see the Adapter go Red while the User Name and Password are updated.

For other security options, see the Getting Started document (link is in the Apps section).

I see I can have a custom dash. How do I create one?

The Custom Dash feature is very powerful and allows you to create a custom dash to your liking. To get started creating your own custom dash, see the Getting Started document in the Apps section (Apps tab next to the FAQ tab). You can also head over to the IRV2 forums to see what others have created. A good thread to take a look at is here. To see others, just do an IRV2 forum search for BlueFire.

I want to run the BlueFire App during my trip. How reliable is the Bluetooth connection?

For the most part Bluetooth is very reliable. However depending on what other apps you are running on your mobile device, the operating system (Apple, Android, Windows) may shutdown the Bluetooth connection. We have also experienced some vehicles that drop power to the Adapter randomly. In that case the Bluetooth connection is lost. To cater for this loss of connection, the BlueFire App will automatically attempt to reconnect the Adapter and continue with whatever was occurring prior to the lost connection (custom dash, logging, etc.). A message will be displayed and the default ringtone will chime when the BlueFire App is reconnecting.

What kind of faults does the BlueFire App show?

The BlueFire App will show any active fault that the on-board computers (ECMs) broadcast on the vehicle network. By law all emission related faults must be broadcasted and for the most part the ECMs broadcast most if not all of their faults. There are cases like in automobiles where the ECMs have proprietary faults that only their expensive diagnostic computers can read. The BlueFire App adheres to the SAE J1939 and J1708 standards for displaying fault codes and descriptions. Some manufactures change the descriptions in their own software but they should still relate to the SAE standard.

The BlueFire App will also display all in-active faults that the ECMs broadcast. Unfortunately, some manufactures have chosen not to broadcast these in-active faults so in those cases the BlueFire App cannot display them.

Along with the fault information, the BlueFire App will display information that was stored exactly at the time of the fault. This information is called a Freeze Frame and can help diagnose the cause of the fault. Again, this is ECM dependent and may or may not be available.

Can I reset faults?

Yes, but resetting active faults is not as straightforward as you may think. Many faults require a complex process to reset. The BlueFire App can send the appropriate reset command to the ECM but you still have to follow the correct procedure to completely reset the fault. That procedure would normally be documented in the manufacturer's repair manual.

You also have the capability of clearing in-active faults. The BlueFire App will send the appropriate command to the ECM but in many cases the ECM will ignore this command. This is because the manufacturer needs this information for warranty and other reasons and has blocked it and only is only allowed in their software.

I use the BlueFire App in my shop and never take it on the road. Can I have it go directly to the faults page when a fault occurs?

Yes, just go to Settings and check the 'Show Faults on Startup' option. And while you're there you might also want to check the 'Fault Notices' option to get rid of the popup manufacturer fault notices.

I have a 6 pin and a 9 pin adapter. Can I have use them both?

Yes, but only one at a time. You can pair them both ahead of time and then plug in the one you want to use and start the BlueFire App. Make sure you have the 'Connect to Last Adapter' unchecked in Settings. If you have them both plugged into different vehicles, the BlueFire App will connect to the Adapter that is closest to the mobile device.

How do I know if I have the latest version of the firmware and software?

After you connect to the Adapter, go to the About page. If you are not current with the firmware and/or software, your version will be highlighted in red along with an update message. If you are connected to the Internet, a message will be displayed when you start the BlueFire App indicating an updated version is available.

I just got this message when I started the BlueFire App saying there is a new version of the BlueFire App available. How do I download the new version?

The BlueFire App is a standard mobile App and will either automatically download and install (if you have this set in your mobile device) or you will need to manually install it from the App store.


About your Privacy

What sort of information do you collect from me?

We are very concerned about customer's privacy and only collect information we need to trouble shoot problems that you are having with the Adapter or the BlueFire App. We do not share any information and keep it strictly secured and confidential. You can view our privacy policy here.