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Cut my losses and Part it out?

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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just got an '01 for $4000 and as you can imagine, it needs work.

Initial problem was that it died while driving. Changed the CPS but it happened again within 10minutes. Eventually figured out it dies while cresting hills, as I let off the gas. So I ordered an OBD2 scanner. Drove about 2,500 miles dealing with this issue.

While waiting for the scanner, I had other issues develop. Window wouldn't work one day, then fine the next. Radio turning itself on and changing through stations. Finally, as I crested a hill, the truck died again. This time after shifting to neutral and cranking, it didn't start. Had to get it towed home. It would crank easily but not start.

So I finally get the scanner and plug it in: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00UJV3E12/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o06_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

It connected and started reading codes. I heard clicking, the wipers go on and off, then right as its about to finish, the screen goes off and doesn't give me any codes. I tried reconnecting it, but it wont even connect now. To top it off, the truck wont even crank! I turn the key and nothing happens, battery is fine. Damn scanner made it worse!

I'm thinking either the ECM or wiring harness is gone. Anyone have a troubleshooting order of operations I should go about? My plan is to replace the wiring harness first, then ECM, then drink about it, then call a mechanic if I still can't get codes.

Thanks for reading
 

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I would not spend a penny on parts until you verify what the actual problem is. That is the quickest way to go broke and get even more stressed out. Barrow a scanner from someone and post up the trouble codes. Try to find a higher end unit and see if maybe autozone or O'Riley or local parts stores have one the sales people use and get the codes that way. Fords are picky with scanners and usually the lower end models do not play well.
 

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Need to work on the electrical problems first -- any "scanner" will not work if the ODB connector is not powered or the PCM
use your volt meter and check for 12 volts and ground in the OBD connector -- pin 16 and pins 4, 5
do you have power in the power outlet on the dash?

@guitarnut is correct, ForScan is what you need to "scan" the truck

you do not need the license to use ForScan


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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you! I never even knew about forscan or how to check for power to the OBD connector. I'll start here.
 

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Thank you! I never even knew about forscan or how to check for power to the OBD connector. I'll start here.
I bought one of the auto scanners years ago before someone told me. Luckily I was able to return it. I still have an obd 1 scanner somewhere I couldn't return. I think it likes the obd mx bluetooth reader. I have both the cheap one and the mx and they both work but the cheap one didn't used to work and sometimes it still doesn't.

If you get the wait to start light then the pcm is on.

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Do you get the WTS light when first turning the key on? If so then the PCM is powering up.
 

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99 f350 7.3, 8inch lift, 37x13.50's lightly modified.
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Check the fuse for your cigarette lighter. The OBD port is powered by the same circuit. It's a 5 amp fuse and should be on the right side of your fuse box under the dash. If it blows your scanner won't power up and your lighter won't work either. Easiest place to start and easiest to fix if it's blown.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hey all,

So I purchased the scanner recommended above and jumped the truck to get codes. Before even putting the key in, the truck was beeping and clicking tremendously fast. No idea what that was. After taking codes and removing the key/scanner/jumper cords, it continued to click and beep until it was out of juice.

Anyway, I've attached the codes and it seems to be the PCM needs to be repaired. I'll start with that and keep y'all updated. Also filmed the clicking/beeping if you want to see that for whatever reason.
 

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Hey all,

So I purchased the scanner recommended above and jumped the truck to get codes. Before even putting the key in, the truck was beeping and clicking tremendously fast. No idea what that was. After taking codes and removing the key/scanner/jumper cords, it continued to click and beep until it was out of juice.

Anyway, I've attached the codes and it seems to be the PCM needs to be repaired. I'll start with that and keep y'all updated. Also filmed the clicking/beeping if you want to see that for whatever reason.
It's something electrical IMO. The clicking, when it happened to me, was a relay clicking but when I replaced the relay it didn't help. I ended up selling that obs because it was starting to rust.

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you need to charge the batteries fully before further testing -- low voltage will / can damage the system

the clicking like you describe indicates low voltage, either drained batteries or a bad connection

I would suggest disconnecting the battery grounds when you are not around the truck, so the batteries are not further damaged
 
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99 f350 7.3, 8inch lift, 37x13.50's lightly modified.
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With that many codes pointing toward electrical problems a good place to start might be checking all of your electrical grounds and cleaning the connections. A bad ground connection can cause some pretty screwy electrical problems. Make sure to check and clean both battery grounds at the battery and where they ground to the chassis. Also the grounding strap between the engine and the chassis. Also it would be a good idea to make sure both batteries are fully charged after making sure that all your ground connections are good. With electrical problems it's often a process of elimination starting with the easiest to fix first.
 

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Yes, I used to do a lot of electrical R&R on vehicles. Clean your grounds really well & look for any crimp connectors, molested wiring or electrical tape. If it's not the original stereo, pull it out and look at the wiring. Pull relays and connectors and inspect for corrosion. I've noticed corrosion in connectors is a side-effect of bad grounds. Use dielectric grease in the connectors if they're corroded.
 

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99 f350 7.3, 8inch lift, 37x13.50's lightly modified.
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Old Marine, Those are all very good points that I hadn't thought to mention. Isn't it funny how particular those crazy little electrons can be??? Electrical problems can make you nuts but are most often caused by the simplest of things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Took out both batteries and am trying to trickle charge the one on the driver's side. (Vector 12-Volt Automotive Battery Charger (50 Amp Engine Start)-BC15BV - The Home Depot) It automatically defaults to "reconditioning" mode, apparently the battery pulls too many amps when charging and this means a buildup of lead acetate. Supposedly this pulse charging mode will fix it. Regardless, thats the first issue.

Next are there are some exposed wires on the passenger side engine against the frame, look like they go into a sensor.

Next there is a group of wires melted together near the fuse relay, drivers side.

Under the steering wheel there is electrical tape, exposed wire, clipped ground, unplugged something near the radio.

Parking brake cable rusted out.

Next to the PCM there are three square blocks of wires stacked vertically, each held in place with a 10mm (?) bolt. All bolts are rusted badly, could probably hammer on an 8mm to replace them. Above them is a well wrapped, cut and heat sealed clump of wires.

Pulled out the PCM too. Frankly, it looks really clean. I have my voltmeter ready, and I'm going to start checking resistors etc to see what may be damaged. Not sure how to proceed with all the wiring though. Should I gut the whole thing?
 

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Don't look at the problem as a whole, its overwhelming. lf I get a bad case of the 'analysis paralysis', I'll say F-this and start cracking beers at 10. Its best to stay on task until after 4pm when the smoking lamp illuminates. I digress..

You found issues that don't require a volt meter. Get a soldering iron, flux, solder and heat shrink tubing. Take it system by system. Fix the obvious stuff. I like to work my way around the vehicle in a systematic way. Once I leave an area, I know it's sorted out.

What you'll be doing with the voltmeter is 'toning' circuits from outside the firewall to the inside fuse box and back and verifying continuity first, then power at the different stages of the key turn if necessary. First there's KOIOff.. after you get the obvious stuff sorted out. Then go after KOIO.. Key on ignition on. Start the process over.

I predict it'll take less than a case of beer to fix. 4 days, part time.

C

Should I gut the whole thing?
 

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Pull the fuse / junction box under the hood and look at the backside of it for corrosion
 

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Listen to Old Marine, Take on one area at a time, one wire at a time. Make sure your conections are clean and neat as you solder them and heat shrink each repair. Once you've dealt with all the issues in one particular area then move on to the next one. Patience and staying organized is the key. Stay on task and pay attention to detail. Double check everything as you go. It's much easier to go about electrical problems that way than to rush and half *** it and have to go back and figure out what you did wrong later. Save the beer for when you're done. It'll taste so much better then and won't cloud your concentration. There's no doubt that you have a mess on your hands. Sounds like someone really did a number on the wiring in your truck. I had similar wiring issues with my truck when I bought it back in October. Wires cut and spliced, just twisted together, some were put together with wire nuts. Wires spliced with quick locks. It looked like a 3rd grader had done it. I didn't discover any of it until after I bought it. Took me the better part of a week to get it right. Some guys just shouldn't be allowed near a tool box. Stay focused and keep us posted. I wouldn't even think about putting the batteries back in until you've got all the wiring sorted out. Check all of your fuses with your ohm meter too. Melted wiring usually means blown fuses. One of the biggest questions is,"Why did the wiring melt"? What caused the problem in the first place?
 

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I would suspect the GEM/VSM (not sure when they switched from GEM to VSM) with all the issues you’re having. Check your carpet carefully for water under the floor mats, windshields are a common leak and it can drip into a number of electrical components under the dash


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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Its running!

Charged up the batteries and turned the key -- no "wait to start" light. This led me to check the fuse box under the dash and I saw fuse 30 popped. Turns out this is the fuse to the fuel filter heater, specifically part: Alliant Power AP63410. This was causing a short and sucking all the juice from the batteries. I unplugged the wires going to it, changed the fuse, and it actually started (40F weather). It was the roughest start you could ever imagine, but it runs!

I don't know if it will still have the issue of dying while cresting hills, but I ran forscan's "key on engine running" and it said there were no issues detected.

Time to fix the other observable problems! Thanks guys.
 
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