Engine control unit

Submitted: Monday, Oct 19, 2015 at 23:48
ThreadID: 130642 Views:2113 Replies:5 FollowUps:8
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Hi to all you mechanics and so called vehicle experts
Can any one let me no if you can purchase a second hand ECU to suit a 2002 100 series land cruiser 4.2 turbo diesel
Most importantly is it possible to replace this unit with a second hand one
Regards Garny
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Reply By: Member - ACD 1 - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 00:18

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 00:18

My response is based on logic not experience.

Can you buy a 2nd hand ECU - why not? Maybe from a wrecker. After all, it is a part on a vevhicle that can be replaced if it fails.

Can you replace one with a second hand ECU - again why not? That's all they do at Toyota if the original one dies.

In saying the above, you may need specialist equipment to code it to your vehicle???

You may get more specific info if you search/ask the question on the LCOOL Forum. But I hope the above gives you dome hope.


AnswerID: 591755

Reply By: craigandej - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 10:37

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 10:37
Give AllFourx4 in Newcastle a ring. They will know and could have them in stock.
AnswerID: 591759

Reply By: HKB Electronics - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 11:35

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 11:35
As I have no experience wwith your model can't say for sure but It may not be as simply as replacing the ECU, in at least some of the newer generation cars their are multiple ECU's, these ECU's talk to each other and are coded so for instance someone can't come along and change the security ECU and steal the car, they have to also change the engine ECU, the security ECU, and the key reader ECU as the codes are different and they won't "talk" to each other.

Same for the ignition key, if it has a transponder chip in it then the ECU would need to be programmed to accept your current key.

Honestly when dealing with vehicle EFI systems unless your absolutely sure what your doing it is better to get the dealer (hopefully they know what their doing) or an other crowd that deals with EFI systems on a daily basis to do the work. After market EFI experts can be better as some can repair to component level whereas dealers will just swap out modules.

Most service mobs including many well respected organisations are very lacking in this area, I recently had a problem with a KIA sportage I have bringing up the engine check light. After a few months of driving the vehicle around with the light coming and going (didn't affect the car operation at all) I decided the EGO sensor was the most likely culprit but as I didn't have a code reader that could read the KIA I took it to a very well repsected 4x4 service oraganisation and asked them if they could tell me the problem. They found four error codes, one was crank angle sensor, another was some sort of communication fault, one was EGO sensor and there was another I can't remember. They would have to have started swapping out the sensors to correct the issue and that becomes very expensive very quickly. I changed the EGO sensor and that solved the problem.

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Reply By: Ron N - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 13:00

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 13:00
Garny - Of course you can buy secondhand ECU's to fit a Landcruiser. They're available on eBay from the wreckers.

100 series ECU on eBay

However, we need to be informed as to what ECU you are talking about.
There are multiple ECU's in many vehicles, and a 2002 100 series has multiple ECU's.
If it's the main engine ECU you are talking about - yes, it can be replaced with a used unit - with conditions.

As HKB correctly points out, the ECU's all talk to each other. This system in cars, which has been in place since the late 1980's, is called the CAN Bus system.
To fit a used ECU, you need to know at what point design changes took place, so you can determine if the used ECU falls within the VIN range of your vehicle.

Design changes happen constantly and dozens of times a year - so you need to have the relevant info related to where the design changes happened, that make the unit you're contemplating purchasing, incompatible with your vehicle.
As a result, you need access to the relevant manufacturers information in this regard.

In addition, it's possible your Landcruiser has an Ignition Security ECU fitted (this is behind the dash) which will not recognise the replacement engine ECU, and the IS ECU needs to be re-flashed to accept the replacement engine ECU.

Furthermore - you really need to have an OBD code reader to start working on and replacing electronic replacements in todays electronic vehicles.
You can get just simple code readers that advise fault codes - but preferably a sophisticated reader is needed, that contains all the relevant manufacturers electronic programming setup, fault codes, fault-finding and also the ability to re-flash the ECU's.

If you commence replacement of electronic components such as ECU's without access to any of the above, you're working in the dark, with one hand tied behind your back.

Cheers, Ron.
AnswerID: 591764

Follow Up By: TomH - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 13:35

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 13:35
A 100ser TDI is not OBDII compliant as you cant for instance put a Scangauge in one as the diagnostic plug is different and probably would need a Toyota factory connector to read it.

Tried on mine and nearly wasted my money

From an old thread

Toyota did not become compliant with OBDll in Australia until they introduced the 4.5 L V8 diesel in 2006, the connector is there but the onboard software is not, they use their own protocol which they seem to guard closely.
I have a 2005 turbocharged EFI diesel Landcruiser and it is not compliant, you just get a "no response" message.
You can however jump a couple of pins on the OBD connector and the engine fault light will flash fault codes to you similar to most other EFI systems.
Look at Scangauge.com.au for a list of compliant vehicles, and links to find the fault codes.
FollowupID: 859805

Follow Up By: HKB Electronics - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 15:04

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 15:04
Have the same issue with my KIA, the code readers the professionals use will read
the KIA proprietry and I imagine the early Toyotas too if their not ODBII compliant.

The only problem is your looking at around $5000 for cheap model proffessional reader!

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Follow Up By: Ron N - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 16:03

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 16:03
Yep - A mate in adjoining workshop to mine wanted an OBD reader for Commodores - it was $7000 for one purchased locally - but he got one direct from China for $900!
It's loaded with all the programming information for nearly every Commodore made, and it gives you the ability to re-flash ECU's as well as find and identify fault codes.
There's a lot of reaming goes on with regards to electronics and programming knowledge and information.
Years ago, I reconditioned a black 202 in the BIL's VK Commodore for half-price, because he had no money (isn't that typical! LOL) - and despite doing everything right, I couldn't get it to run properly. It ran like a hairy goat.
I got sick of it, I had no info on that early Bosch ECU or its programming, so I told him to take it to the Holden dealer and get it sorted.
The Holden dealer took the car inside their shop, and returned it in 10 mins - and it was running like the day it left the factory.
They also charged him $117 for the privilege of having the knowledge about resetting the Bosch ECU!
$117 was a lot of money for 10 mins work in those days! (well over 20 yrs ago).
Then dealers want to know why people won't go to them.

Cheers, Ron.
FollowupID: 859815

Follow Up By: GREG T11 - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 21:20

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 21:20
Wish I had that dealer, sometimes it is better to have something solved in 10 mins than stuff around for hours on end. Had the exact same model 10 or so years ago (VK) everything was mickey mouse except the bloody thing would run fine for a while and then decide to play silly buggers. Injector clean new ( used } ECU all which cost way more than $117 and much hair pulling and I basically gave it away to a young fella who would enjoy the challenge.
3 years ago I had an XR8 Falcon once again in very nice condition and low kms which was going into limp home mode at unpredictable intervals, 100 kmh to no power on a freeway, putting off from standstill, didn't matter what the circumstances you could not pin it down to any one action. $950 later a dealer fitted TCS wish assurances the problem was sorted, NOT. That one got traded figuring I'd let the barstards fix it under warranty for the next poor bugger!
I hate bloody computers.
FollowupID: 859826

Follow Up By: garrycol - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 22:49

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 22:49
Not a problem with the computers or the diagnostics - it is lazy mechanics who solely rely on the codes and do not do old fashioned mechanic work.

I once had a check engine light and the codes points to an issue in the shutdown system - all the experts - independent and dealer just wanted to replace the injectors and injection pump - ka-ching $3500 please.

A little of detective work by myself based on looking for the simple things first and the codes pointing to the shutdown system led me to the fuel shut down valve (the codes did say it was an issue in the shutdown system) - pulled the valve apart and there was a little crud that prevented the valve fully closing - enough fuel for the ECU to detect an issue but not enough for the engine to keep running.

Any mechanic should have used the codes as the pointer to where to look and use good old mechanic skills to work the issue through. But no - just replace suspect parts.

So if anyone wants to replace parts and it does not fix the issue it is at their expense.
FollowupID: 859830

Follow Up By: GREG T11 - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 23:31

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 23:31
Fine if you have the ability to both access the codes and analyse them, but as others have said it is not as straight forward as that in most cases. A large percentage of the population don't own a scan tool and why should they, the cars in some cases are less than 10 years old. I was understanding of the fact that a 20 year old Holden had its dramas but a 6 year old ford you would kind of think a ford dealer would be on top of.
Put a set of triples or a holley, a mechanical fuel pump or a old style OHV motor in front of me and I will have a fiddle but apart from the fact that I can't get my hand further than the bloody dipstick for hoses and plastic crap I do no understandy this new fangled sensorised apparatus. That what I pay other people for.
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 23:43

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 23:43
$30 to get the codes read - cheap really.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 00:15

Wednesday, Oct 21, 2015 at 00:15
Greg - Heh heh, I think everyone has electronic problems stories like yours.
There are still many people repairing vehicles who have inadequate knowledge and inadequate equipment, when it comes to todays complex electronics.
Another BIL, a farmer, had a VN Commodore in the mid-1990's that kept getting slower and slower until it wouldn't go over 80 kmh.
He regularly took it to the local tractor dealership, where the mechanics were convinced it was the fuel pump. The fuel pump was replaced, it still wouldn't go.
So, the mechanics reckoned it must be the coils or the spark plugs, so new ones were fitted. Still no difference.
Then they reckoned it was the ECU, so a new ECU went in. Still nothing changed.
This went on for weeks and weeks, until the total repair bill got to $3500, and the BIL got thoroughly sick of the "try this and replace that" technique of the tractor mechanics.
He finally realised he was dealing with amateurs with little by way of diagnostic equipment, and took it to a major Holden dealer in Perth.
The dealer hooked the Commodore up to the big shop diagnostic machine, and 5 mins later, back came the verdict.
"The filter inside the fuel tank is blocked!"
Not one of the blokes who had worked on the car, had even known there was a filter inside the tank!
BIL picked the car up an hour later, it only cost him about $200, and he reckoned it went like a new one!
He sure learnt his lesson, and he doesn't take his vehicles to tractor mechanics any more! LOL

Cheers, Ron.
FollowupID: 859833

Reply By: garny - Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 19:24

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2015 at 19:24
Thanks for all the info very well informed group .
I will leave this one to the experts.
AnswerID: 591778

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