Gary Hooper's late equaliser for Scunthorpe ensured Reading's poor home form continued as they were once again held in a 1-1 draw at the Madejski Stadium.
Grzegorz Rasiak headed the Royals into the lead in the 16th minute and it looked as if they were set to pick up what would have been only their second home win out of 11 Coca-Cola Championship matches.
But struggling Scunthorpe, who have shown signs of improvement of late, snatched a point 10 minutes from time.
Reading were determined to turn around their dismal home record and they almost got off to the perfect start as Gylfi Sigurdsson drilled in a fierce shot from just outside the area which flew narrowly past the right-hand post.
Rasiak showed signs of intent when in the 12th minute he headed just over from close range after Ivar Ingimarsson had put a tantalising cross into the area.
And they were almost made to rue those missed opportunities as seconds later Hooper saw his close-range effort saved by Reading goalkeeper Adam Federici.
Scunthorpe have the worst goals against record in the Championship and the Royals did not have to wait long until they added to their opponents' defensive woes when Rasiak headed home Hal Robson-Kanu's cross from the edge of the six-yard box.
The visitors could have levelled matters 10 minutes later only for Federici to pull off a brilliant save to keep out Hooper's 25-yard screamer.
Reading had an equally spectacular chance shortly after the half-hour mark as Sigurdsson fired in a free-kick which Josh Lillis did well to turn around for a corner.
Sigurdsson is having a stunning first season in the senior team, having scored five goals in 13 appearances.
The 20-year-old could have doubled his tally early in the second half but he saw his first attempt saved by Lillis before firing his second narrowly over the bar.
Rasiak could have doubled his tally shortly after the hour mark but Lillis was on hand to keep his side in the game.
Brendan Rodgers threw on Jimmy Kebe in the 64th minute and the Mali international almost had an immediate impact but he drilled wide of the right hand post seconds after replacing Robson-Kanu.
The home fans were beginning to think they could be on course to witness a rare home win, but the Royals came close to shooting themselves in the foot when Ingimarsson gave away a needless free-kick in a good position on the edge of the area.
Fortunately for Reading Grant McCann fired straight into the wall.
The hosts should have sealed the win 15 minutes from time when Marek Matejovsky saw his close-range shot parried by Lillis but only as far as Sigurdsson who drilled wide of the left upright.
And they were made to pay for their profligacy five minutes later as Hooper slotted Paul Hayes' cross home from close range.
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