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What is the most important emissions control device on a vehicle today? The catalytic converter, because it cleans up any exhaust pollutants that exit the engine. It's a hot job (literally) that operates at temperatures of 600 to 1000 degrees F. ...
More Power... More Torque... Less Fuel Consumption! Want to cut down on fuel costs while also maximizing life span of your car? How about that, plus boost your vehicles overall horse power? That's what we do in a nutshell. For example, once we optimiz...
FLASH REPROGRAMMING Would you believe flash reprogrammable PCMs have been in vehicles for over a decade? The first such application was the 1990 Geo Storm. Why a humdrum car like the Storm would be the first to receive a flash reprogrammable computer s...
[1] CHECK ENGINE LIGHT (MALFUNCTION INDICATOR LIGHT/LAMP OR MIL FOR SHORT) Check Engine light (which is officially called _\"MALFUNCTION INDICATOR LAMP\"_ or _MIL_) -- is supposed to alert the driver when something has gone wrong with the vehicles...
[1] WHAT IS A _DIAGNOSTIC TROUBLE CODE_ (DTC)? Diagnostic trouble codes (or fault codes) are codes that are stored by the on-board computer diagnostic system. These are stored in response to a problem found in the car by the system. These codes are s...
These Crank Relearn Instructions may not apply to all vehicles. But they're close to how it's done on most cars. TO PERFORM THE RELEARN, PROCEED AS FOLLOWS: Connect a SCANNER [1] to make sure there are no trouble codes stored in the computer's mem...
The Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) is on and you've just found a misfire code. It's a code P0304 which tells you cylinder number four is misfiring. There are no other codes and the engine has a steady miss. Now what? Misfire diagnosis in this kind...
While the OBD port is standardised globally, several communication protocols remain possible depending on the vehicle manufacturers. They are represented below by the 5 columns: ISO 9141-2, ISO 14230, SAE J1850, ISO 15765 and SAE J1979. It is the...
What do you really need to know about diagnosing and repairing starting, charging and ignition systems? Two things, basically: that electrical and ignition problems are often difficult to diagnose (especially intermittent faults), and that a LOT of ele...
Diesel engines are real misers when it comes to sipping fuel. They're also known for their pulling power and rugged durability. That's why diesels continue to be a popular option in many pickup trucks today. But diesels are also known for their idle cl...
Diesel engines are real misers when it comes to sipping fuel. They're also known for their pulling power and rugged durability. That's why diesels continue to be a popular option in many pickup trucks today. But diesels are also known for their id...
Misfire is a common driveability problem that may or may not be easy to diagnose, depending on the cause. A misfiring cylinder in a four-cylinder engine is, pardon the pun, hard to miss. The loss of 25% of the engine's power output is the equivale...
_ I recently experienced an engine misfire problem which may be of interest to some of the TOAD (TOTAL OBD & ECU AUTO DIAGNOSTICS) [1] users. To make a long story short, the PCM on my 1997 Chrysler Intrepid, 3.5L V6, reported a P0301 code through the T...
DIAGNOSTIC TIPSOnce you've identified the trouble code(s) in the vehicle, you can proceed with the diagnosis. IMPORTANT: A CODE BY ITSELF IS NOT A DIAGNOSIS, ONLY A STARTING POINT! For a full comprehensive review of what's going on inside your ca...
Distributorless ignition systems (DIS) have been around for almost a decade now, and have eliminated much of the maintenance that used to be associated with the ignition system. No distributor means there’s no distributor cap or rotor to repla...
Fastest way to find out, is to check here. Two factors will show if your vehicle is definitely OBD-II equipped: There will be a 16-pin OBD-II connector as shown below, and... There will be a note on a sticker or nameplate under the hood...
EGR DIAGNOSTICSOn some vehicles, the OBD II system may monitor the operation of the exhaust gas recirculation system. The EGR system reduces the formation of oxides of nitrogen (NOX) in the exhaust when the engine is under load. OBD II may check for a...
FUEL INJECTIONElectronic fuel injection (EFI) comes in several basic varieties. A Throttle Body Injection (TBI) system has a single throttle body which contains one or two fuel injectors. The injector(s) spray fuel into the intake manifold. TBI systems w...
If the OBD II fuel system monitor has set a code, it means fuel trim has reached its limit because the engine is running RICH or LEAN. Any of the following conditions can cause the engine to run LEAN: Dirty fuel injectors (clean or replace a...
For every vehicle an automobile manufacturer sells there is a specific electronic control unit (ECU) [1] which belongs to that car. The item you seek may have different part numbers within the same make/model/year. Within a particular model there ca...
Some devices will only connect to your computer using a port called "RS232 Serial Port". This port was used on old computers before 2003. RS232 was the universal/popular port back in the old days just like USB is today. In short, all you need to...
You're here because a certain hardware/software product doesn't work on Windows 8, 10+, MacOS. But you'd still like to have it work on them. Solution is to install Windows 7 (32-bit) on them using VirtualMachine. This is completely safe and won't in...
INTRO GUIDE TO DO-IT-YOURSELF ECU MAP CHIP TUNING / PROGRAMMING / FLASHING (USING HEX EDITOR) PART 1 [1] of this article will talk about basics of ECU. You'll first need to get familiar with this information before attempting to code (as discussed in ...
IGNITION BASICSThe major components in the ignition system include the spark plugs, plug wires, distributor, distributor cap and rotor, ignition coil(s), ignition module and crankshaft position sensor.There are several basic types of electronic ignition s...
When the first emission controls were first introduced back in the late 1960s, they were primarily "add-on" components that solved a particular emission need. When positive crankcase ventilation (PCV) became standard in 1968, the recycling of cran...
The performance and emissions that today's engines deliver would be impossible without the electronics that manage everything from ignition and fuel delivery to every aspect of emissions control. Electronics make possible V8 engines that deliver e...
MODE 06 DIAGNOSTICS When Onboard Diagnostics II was first conceived as a means of monitoring vehicle emissions, it was obvious there would be a lot of information to keep track of. The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) developed guidelines for mana...
Dealing with car that won't start can be very frustrating especially if you are stranded without any tools or test equipment. There are a multitude of reasons why an engine won't start, but this guide will cover general troubleshooting steps for mos...
O2 SENSORS & CATALYTIC CONVERTER DIAGNOSTICSConverters typically fail one of two ways: they get too hot, melt and plug up, or the catalyst becomes contaminated and useless. Diagnosing a plugged converter is fairly easy, but diagnosing converter effi...
INDEX * OBD Modes [1] * OBD PIDs [2] * OBD PIDs (mode 1 and 2) [3] * OBD PIDs (mode 5) [4] * OBD PIDs (mode 6) [5] * OBD PIDs (mode 9) [6] OBD MODES OBD has 10 modes of diagnostics. Not each mode is supported by the vehicles engine ECU...
Are you up to speed on OBD II? You should be because starting in 2002, a number of states have announced plans to change their emissions testing programs over to OBD II. Instead of doing a tailpipe emissions check on a dynamometer, an OBD II check i...
ENGINE COOLANT TEMPERATURE SENSOR (ECT) Usually located on the cylinder head or intake manifold, this sensor is used to monitor the temperature of the engine's coolant. It's resistance changes in proportion to coolant temperature. Input from the ...
LIST 1 AFC - Air Flow Control ALDL - Assembly Line Diagnostic Link. Former name for GM (only) Data Link Connector, the connector socket into which the scan tool plug is inserted; sometimes used to refer to any pre-OBD II computer signals CAN...
All 1996 and newer model year passenger cars and light trucks are OBDII-equipped, but the first applications were actually introduced back in ‘94 on a limited number of vehicle models. What makes OBDII different from all the self-diagnostic sys...
Since the mid-1990, no vehicle innovation has done more for vehicle service and repair than on-board diagnostic (OBD) systems. But in order for it to work, you must first break the OBD code. Since the earliest days of full-blown computerized engine-...
Preventive maintenance may be a dirty subject in some people’s minds, but it’s a perfectly acceptable and politically correct means of keeping vehicles in good running condition. Checking fluid levels regularly and changing the fluids and ...
MONITOR READINESS STATUS Readiness flags are indicators on a scan tool or code reader that tell you when an OBD II system monitor has run or completed its test. A scan tool may say "ready" or "Complete" next to a listed monitor if it ...
[1] PIDS are the serial data that can be accessed from the vehicle computer using a scan tool. PIDS include: * STATUS OF THE OBD II SYSTEM COMPONENT MONITORS (Ready or Complete, or Not Ready or Incomplete) * LIVE SENSOR DATA (Oxygen sensor rich...
Troubleshooting driveability problems can be a challenge on late-model computer-controlled vehicles because there are so many possible causes to consider. Is it a conventional fuel, ignition or compression problem? A bad sensor? A computer glitch? A...
Diagnosing an intermittent stalling problem can be a challenge, especially if the engine only stalls occasionally (and at the least opportune time). And if there are no pending codes, hard codes or history codes in the vehicle's computer to give you so...
If you had to name one item that has more of an effect on engine performance than anything else, it would have to be the spark plugs. The plugs are the business end of the ignition system that deliver the all-important spark needed to ignite the air...
Today’s computerized engine control systems rely on inputs from a variety of sensors to regulate engine performance, emissions and other important functions. The sensors must provide accurate information otherwise driveability problems, increa...
Onboard Diagnostics Version 2 (OBD-II) is in all passenger vehicles in the world - manufactured after a certain date. It has 4 main purposes: Designed to detect failures in various parts of vehicles systems. In which case the "CHEC...
Some things never change, such as the need for PERIODIC PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE. But a tune-up is one job that's changed a great deal over the course of automotive history. The outdated term is still widely used by many people to describe a service p...
The onboard computer is the brains of the engine control system, so when the brain isn't functioning correctly neither is the engine or anything else that the microprocessor controls - which may include the charging system, transmission, various emi...
CLICK HERE to discover where your vehicles OBD-2 port is located. ------------------------- OBD port connector is within 3 feet (91cm) of the steering wheel. The port can be black or white. This is an example of what it looks like: Normally, ...
All cars and light trucks built for sale in the United States after 1996 are required to be OBD-II compliant. For EU, Asian, Australia vehicles — read this. An OBD-II compliant vehicle can use any of the five communication protocols: J1850 PWM, J185...

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