A Storms a Brewing. Chrysler ECU Shortage and a Big SKIM Problem

Michael Mobile Technician Utah Posted   Latest  
Discussion
Programming
2003 Jeep Liberty Limited 3.7L (K) 4-spd (45RFE)
Crank /Brief Start

A few weeks ago I was called to a shop that had purchased a used PCM for a Jeep. They called me to program it. When I got there the customer explained that the vehicle would start then stall. They had replaced a dead PCM. The customer had written the VIN and used the J2534 toolbox to reset SKIM. The SKIM reset did not work. This vehicle did not have SKIM. They thought I had some magic to make it work. I tried all I had, nothing would remove the SKIM so the engine would continue to run. The DRB reported the PCM as a SKIM vehicle. I had to walk away, I failed. This sort of thing burns me up inside until I get a solution. There were not any of this part number left on the parts websites. Getting another ECU was not an option.

I looked high and low and finally found a engineer who would put together a program to remove SKIM and reset the PCM just like with SKIM models and the J2534 toolbox. I went back and tried the software. It worked. After the reset process, the engine started and stayed running. I was relieved.

We have a big problem on our hands. We still have people driving older vehicles and need to be able to replace PCMs when bad. Chrysler seems to have some big issues with theirs. O2 heater drivers, EVAP purge, LDP pump, Ignition Drivers blow if you look at the car sideways. The really bad modules are in short supply or non-existent. Nobody trusts the OEM or Cardone to give them good product. It seems that the rebuilders just want to bead blast the white rust and throw a coat of Aluminum paint on the outside. We all know it is what is on the inside that counts. What we really need is for the ECU manufactures to do is either start up the presses again or provide data sheets so "real" rebuilders can provide quality ECU repairs.

What solutions have you found out there? Is there anything out there that is any good?

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David Diagnostician
Pennsylvania
David Default
 

I have nothing good to contribute to this but very interested to see where this goes. Great topic, especially being in an urban area where people tend to lean towards used parts. Not a fan of that but it is what it is sometimes.

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Brian Instructor
Ohio
Brian Default
 

Hi Michael, I am very baffled by the fact that sometimes the J2534 tool box works and sometimes it does not to remove skim. When I was a mobile tech I hated not knowing for sure if could complete a job. I often would question the customer if gray or black key, and tell them if black key ( no buttons) that if they install the new PCM it should not set any security DTC's.,( I think the 04/05…

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
   

Hi Brian, The Pre-CAN software I am currently using is working every time. It is in Alpha form and not ready for release. There is also a Post CAN version that will be available. Stay tuned......

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Chris Diagnostician
Ohio
Chris Default
 

You always have the option of turning the job down when someone else monkeying with it and out of desperation the shop calls you. It's what I do and I don't feel bad doing it. Not sure what you telling yourself to continue such a path but your fooling yourself if you think your getting paid for your time. I don't have time for these cases so I give the shops 2 warnings and on the third they get…

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Hi Chris, I am at a point in my life I can afford to take some risks and spend a few dollars. For me it is about the challenge. I don't like it when a vehicle whips me due to a process I can't handle. It is a flaw, I understand that. I have not heard of elite electronics. Sounds like they have quite a racket. -Mike

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Brian Instructor
Ohio
Brian Default
 

Chris, Yes you can turn down work, however if you put the ball in their court ( IE you are paying me to try) you can get paid. This comes down to proper communication about the job, which takes time, which justifies a higher price. I am not in your shoes or demographic so I do not know how things are by you, but I can tell you as I worked for a larger company with mobile and have seen multiple…

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Chris Diagnostician
Ohio
Chris Default
 

Mobile work is fine but by its definition should be limited to the job at hand. Meaning, if your going behind many attempts and the root cause is a network issue then it should be delt with in a facility with all the appropriate resources available. To go out and do this from a mobile standpoint begs the comparison of a surgeon doing heart surgery on a client's kitchen table. There must be a…

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Hi Chris, There are drawbacks to doing work on-site. There are ways to mitigate the drawbacks. I invested in a large van which I rigged with inverters, generator, communications network, computers, rework equipment, EEPROM tools, OE Tools, Scopes and a large work surface. Every tool I need is at my fingertips. Since I don't carry many hand tools, I just get a helper from the shop when I need to…

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Anthony Technical Support Specialist
Pennsylvania
Anthony Default
 

Hi Mike: I tell people to call Flight Systems and see if their original can be repaired. They know Chrysler modules. There have been very few issues with their work and they've always stood behind it. The 24 hour turn-around doesn't hurt either. HTH, Guido

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Marlin Technician
Oregon
Marlin Default
 

I have been wondering also. So far we have gotten by, but that includes getting what seems to be the last BCM for mid-90's Caravans. We got burned by the "rebuilder" on the job; they didn't get the mileage reset and were unable to correct it, and they never refunded the core charge. They actually didn't want the core back because they decided to never sell another one, but agreed to credit it…

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Anthony Technical Support Specialist
Pennsylvania
Anthony Default
 

Hi Marlin: Is Boulder Bros. still in business? They're in your neck o'the woods. That who I used to send my Nissan modules to. Perhaps they can help alleviate some of the AG. Guido

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Marlin Technician
Oregon
Marlin Default
 

No-go, we tried.

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Geoff Diagnostician
Hawaii
Geoff Default
 

Actually kinda surprised the grey-market locksmith tools didn't already have the SKIM-Delete option. Keep us posted on your new engineer friend's software. My dad was a EE. Wish he was still alive, I'd make him go visit you, to see all the neat stuff you have going on. :-)

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Andrew Technician
Utah
Andrew Default
 

I follow a private EEPROM group on Facebook. The top help requests are security deletes and mileage correction. In countries where they don't have flash programming access (let alone security!) techs are pulling firmware out of the EEPROMs and transferring it to other control modules in order to get cars running. Dead $400 key? Dump the security. Used BCM or IPC? Modify what is there to give a…

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Geoff Diagnostician
Hawaii
Geoff Default
   

Can you send me the Chrysler "calculator" ? …​.​com

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Robert Mobile Technician
Delaware
Robert Default
 

I have a video on the j2534 Facebook page somewhere of this exact problem on the same vehicle. The skim reset alone wouldn't work but i found a fix. Disconnect the battery with the key on after doing a skim reset. That fixed mine and got it running. I know that's a bit unorthodox but it is what it is. I thought it was a fluke but it worked all 3 times that I tried it. The shop had 3 pcm's that…

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Robert Mobile Technician
Delaware
Robert Default
 

As promised. m​.​facebook​.​com/groups/8520248…

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Phil Technician
Massachusetts
Phil Default
 

Hi Robert, that link does not work. I get a 'content not found' error. Link may be broken or page may have been removed.

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Dennis Owner/Technician
Utah
Dennis Default
 

Michael I am looking for a way to completely eliminate the SKIM on the 9 jeeps we have in the family - since we are fairly close to each other we could work together on figuring out a way to do this. We take these jeeps off roading and would like to carrry an extra computer that would not be affected by the SKIM

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Should not be a problem. It depends on the year range of the Jeeps you have. I will give you a call later today and we can discuss.

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Christopher Owner/Technician
Arizona
Christopher Default
 

Just had the same problem today…could not reset the skim on a 03 jeep liberty built without skim,,, j2534 toolbox would not work…any way you can share that software….ive been searching for a solution for a very long time for this?????

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Robert Mobile Technician
Delaware
Robert Default
 

Perform the skim reset function then while leaving the key on, disconnect the battery the battery and touch the leads together for 15 seconds or so. Reconnect then go in and write the vin. This trick hasn't let me down once on the libertys.

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Christopher Owner/Technician
Arizona
Christopher Default
 

Ok..thanks ill give it a try on monday…

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Michael Mobile Technician
Utah
Michael Default
 

Christopher, If you would like to contact me, I can give you more information on it. …

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Chris Technician
California
Chris Default
   

Michael came across this posting while doing a search for SKIM delete. Please let me know if you have any update on the SKIM software. Thanks …

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