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Should you carry a new or rebuilt ECM with you


Wrknrvr

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They are sort of expensive to just carry around, IMHO. It's not like a filter or belt that could easily be changed at the road side or in a rest area if required. (I'm sure they don't recommend that though). 

Had I known the cost of the repair of my ECM/Wiring harness before it struck I most certainly would have had the harness replaced before it got to the ECM. I didn't and had to pay the price. 

Rod

White 2000/2010Volvo VNL 770 with 7' Drom box with opposing doors,  JOST slider hitch. 600 HP Cummins Signature 18 Speed three pedal auto shift.

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 It's a heck of a conundrum. Even if you do not have the skills needed nor the tools to replace an ecm, you can hire them. But if your rig is of the age and models that ecm availability is scarce, or worse, then maybe it would be a good idea if you plan to keep the rig for some time.

 If one does possess a spare ecm then comes the issue of how to store it proper. It'll need to be kept clean and dry, in a place that it will not likely get dropped, or something dropped on it.

 Might even be a good idea to have it installed on the engine to make sure it works proper for your engine setup before storing it.

 Most of us keep belts, and other spare parts in the box. Funny thing is, the majority of the parts we all keep on hand, are parts that are available anywhere. So,......an ecm is something to consider. Just need to think about it a bit before the investment.

I'm a work'n on it.

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14 minutes ago, Deezl Smoke said:

 It's a heck of a conundrum. Even if you do not have the skills needed nor the tools to replace an ecm, you can hire them. But if your rig is of the age and models that ecm availability is scarce, or worse, then maybe it would be a good idea if you plan to keep the rig for some time.

 If one does possess a spare ecm then comes the issue of how to store it proper. It'll need to be kept clean and dry, in a place that it will not likely get dropped, or something dropped on it.

 Might even be a good idea to have it installed on the engine to make sure it works proper for your engine setup before storing it.

 Most of us keep belts, and other spare parts in the box. Funny thing is, the majority of the parts we all keep on hand, are parts that are available anywhere. So,......an ecm is something to consider. Just need to think about it a bit before the investment.

On the Volvo engines, they require programming so some place with computer capabilities (i.e dealer) still involved.  As far as storage, sealed Mylar bag with couple of oxygen absorbers would work or simple vacuum food saver with couple of absorbers.  All available on Amazon.

2006 Volvo 780 "Hoss" Volvo D12, 465hp, 1650 ft/lbs tq., ultrashift

Bed Build by "JW Morgan's Custom Welding"

2017 DRV 39DBRS3

2013 Smart Passion Coupe "Itty Bitty"

 

"Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first!"

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This reminds me of back in the '70s, when Ford ignition modules were prone to sudden death.  I always kept one in the toolbox, as did dad, and grandpa, and.......

I now have three of those modules, still in the (beat up) boxes.  But,, I never got stranded again.

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15 minutes ago, rickeieio said:

This reminds me of back in the '70s, when Ford ignition modules were prone to sudden death.  I always kept one in the toolbox, as did dad, and grandpa, and.......

I now have three of those modules, still in the (beat up) boxes.  But,, I never got stranded again.

 Oh geez.....ya had to bring up that nightmare.😁 No matter where you were, the engine just up and died without warning. Crossing a rr track, middle of a major intersection, no matter.

I'm a work'n on it.

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34 minutes ago, SuiteSuccess said:

On the Volvo engines, they require programming so some place with computer capabilities (i.e dealer) still involved.  As far as storage, sealed Mylar bag with couple of oxygen absorbers would work or simple vacuum food saver with couple of absorbers.  All available on Amazon.

  Most ecm's will need perimeters installed. But it's still better to have, rather can be better to have, the ecm that can be programmed, rather than no ecm available. A lot of techs have the capacity to do the programming, or even the instal, but they all need an ecm that is in good repair to do so.

 Amazon is awesome. The things one can find today.....amazing.

 Then the need to find a place on the rig for said storage. ECM's are rugged as they mount in a very inhospitable location. But they don't like being dropped or having heavy items layed on the connector inserts. That feeling you get when you know you have the part you need because you thought ahead, only to find it broken when you retrieve it for the need.............

I'm a work'n on it.

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6 hours ago, Deezl Smoke said:

  Most ecm's will need perimeters installed. But it's still better to have, rather can be better to have, the ecm that can be programmed, rather than no ecm available. A lot of techs have the capacity to do the programming, or even the instal, but they all need an ecm that is in good repair to do so.

 Amazon is awesome. The things one can find today.....amazing.

 Then the need to find a place on the rig for said storage. ECM's are rugged as they mount in a very inhospitable location. But they don't like being dropped or having heavy items layed on the connector inserts. That feeling you get when you know you have the part you need because you thought ahead, only to find it broken when you retrieve it for the need.............

OTR shows installation in Volvo in this video. Seems fairly straightforward.

 

 

Edited by SuiteSuccess

2006 Volvo 780 "Hoss" Volvo D12, 465hp, 1650 ft/lbs tq., ultrashift

Bed Build by "JW Morgan's Custom Welding"

2017 DRV 39DBRS3

2013 Smart Passion Coupe "Itty Bitty"

 

"Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first!"

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Georgia, I'll add that if you drive a Volvo that was prone to the injector harness fiasco, a spare ecm is a good thing to have on board.

KW T-680, POPEMOBILE
Newmar X-Aire, VATICAN
Lots of old motorcycles, Moto Guzzi Griso and Spyder F3 currently in the front row
Young enough to play in the dirt as a retired farmer.
contact me at rickeieio@yahoo.com

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At what point does everyone start hauling around a complete spare truck??

Lets check the list:

supplies for a complete oil change.
supplies for a complete coolant change
a spare every filter, screen, airline, coolant line, oil line on the truck
a drive tire
a steer tire
an ECU, TCU, Lighting control module, a laptop with manufacturer software to configure them
every tool know to mankind

Where does the madness stop?

Edited by Av8r3400

Av8r3400
Thunderstruck - 2012 Volvo VNL 730 D13 iShift
Slick - 2021 Grand Design Momentum 397TH

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I'd rather die trying to live - Than live trying not to die.   -Leonard Perry

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I know this isn’t the popular opinion, but I don’t carry any spare parts for my HDT.  I don’t carry any spare parts for any vehicle I own (except a drive belt for my RZR SXS).  I carry tools to fix basic issues, but if I need a part I go buy it.  In 12 or so years of HDT ownership, my rig has stranded me (needed to go to a shop and get repaired) twice.  Once was an ECM (a multi thousand dollar part - no way I would spend that just to carry one around) and the other time was a faulty head (no way I’d be carrying one of those around either).  Neither of these would have been possible (or obvious) roadside repairs.   Both took diagnostic work to determine the ultimate problem before repairs could be done - in other words required a shop.  None of my other (on road) vehicles have every stranded me.  If something happens that I can’t easily diagnose and repair quickly/easily, I have tow coverage and will get the rig to a shop and let them deal with the issue.  Knock on wood, this practice has worked well for me.  The two times the truck had to go to the shop it was inconvenient, but didn’t end the trips we were on.  We improvised and were able to continue on in different ways.

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8 hours ago, Av8r3400 said:

At what point does everyone start hauling around a complete spare truck??

Lets check the list:

supplies for a complete oil change.
supplies for a complete coolant change
a spare every filter, screen, airline, coolant line, oil line on the truck
a drive tire
a steer tire
an ECU, TCU, Lighting control module, a laptop with manufacturer software to configure them
every tool know to mankind

Where does the madness stop?

 🤣 I fully understand your frustration at the topic. I have a friend that virtually would tow a machine shop with him. You know, in case he has to forge and turn a new piston at the side of the road.......lol

 But kidding aside, I honestly believe this to be the environment one grows up in. I for instance, grew up on, and still am, a farmer. We carry parts. It's just the way things are. Loggers, truckers, fishing boats, etc., grow up in a tradition that was cast from need, of carrying parts and knowing how to use tools. As time rolls on and cell phones, the www., and all kinds of roadside programs come about, that habit, or tradition, or....whatever one wishes to call it, just sticks. It brings a piece of mind to many.

 Budget also plays a huge roll, as does priority. Thankfully, so far anyway, many of us still have the luxury of being independent, and form our own opinions and make our own priorities. So though to some even a top off gallon of engine oil may seem a waste of time and space, to others that spare ecm, tire, alternator, belts, and whatever else, is a priority over something else like having a spare bedroom in case the kids come home or on a trip with them.

 When I had my 2005 Pete, with 1.9 million on the clock, I carried a few more parts than I do today with my 2021 Pete. My method for condoning my madness is through experience, can I fix it faster and/or with less inconvenience, than waiting for the roadside company to get there. If I break and axle, no. If the serpentine belt shreds and does'nt take the whole front periphery with it, yes.

I'm a work'n on it.

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Been following these posts about ECM failure , seems they are all due to moisture / oil getting into the ecm and associated connections cause by the oil level sensor harness wicking and its happening on D12 engines prior to 2013. Volvo put out a tech notice regarding the fix.

Service Bullet

Wouldnt it be best to perform the procedure and eliminate the known issue ? Also make sure there are no other fluid leaks in or around the area of the ECM.  Would that negate the need to carry a spare ECM or are there other issues causing ECM failures?

As we were shopping for our new to us HDT truck, we focused on a gen 3 Volvo to avoid the wicking issue as it seems its resolved now, maybe there are other issues the D13 has that the older motors didnt have, I dont know but we are going to find out 🙂

I agree with Chad on his approach,  a communication device and a credit card should get me out of trouble when it arrives

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The only spare parts I carry are fuel filters, serpentine belts, intercooler hose and oil and oil filters plus a gallon of coolant. Those can be taken out by bad fuel or road debris and only take a few minutes to fix on the side of the road.

I do carry a good tool kit with me to fix those issues noted above and for more serious problems once I have been moved to a safe area. How big that tool kit is depends on the skill level of the owner however and what I carry is not for everyone.

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    The first thing I want say is this has been a very good discussion on said subject.

     If you have a Cummins n14, I believe Cummins no longer has a new ecm for you.

     They do have a kit that will work for your engine. BBBut you need to install a new cam. Or have someone install it for you. And then they have a ecm that will work with a new cam installed.

     I do not know if other older Cummins engines have a new ecm available for your engine.

     There are a number of ecm rebuilders, that can provide a rebuilt unit for you. Second thing is the time to get one. It needs programming to fit your engine. 

      We have a Cummins n14, and with the engine serial number, it can be preprogrammed. That way it can ride along with you, until that moment arrives.

      Now if you sell your truck, the next owner may appreciate you having one riding along.

     Now out of real desperation, you may have a ecm your buddy might need. Ya, that is a wild statement.

 

   It has been interesting to read the different responses.

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2 hours ago, GeorgiaHybrid said:

The only spare parts I carry are fuel filters, serpentine belts, intercooler hose and oil and oil filters plus a gallon of coolant. Those can be taken out by bad fuel or road debris and only take a few minutes to fix on the side of the road.

I do carry a good tool kit with me to fix those issues noted above and for more serious problems once I have been moved to a safe area. How big that tool kit is depends on the skill level of the owner however and what I carry is not for everyone.

“A good tool kit”!  Now that’s the understatement of the century.  Between Charlie Lord and David you could rebuild a truck from ground up. 😊

2006 Volvo 780 "Hoss" Volvo D12, 465hp, 1650 ft/lbs tq., ultrashift

Bed Build by "JW Morgan's Custom Welding"

2017 DRV 39DBRS3

2013 Smart Passion Coupe "Itty Bitty"

 

"Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first!"

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21 hours ago, Chad Heiser said:

I know this isn’t the popular opinion, but I don’t carry any spare parts for my HDT.  I don’t carry any spare parts for any vehicle I own (except a drive belt for my RZR SXS).  I carry tools to fix basic issues, but if I need a part I go buy it.  In 12 or so years of HDT ownership, my rig has stranded me (needed to go to a shop and get repaired) twice.  Once was an ECM (a multi thousand dollar part - no way I would spend that just to carry one around) and the other time was a faulty head (no way I’d be carrying one of those around either).  Neither of these would have been possible (or obvious) roadside repairs.   Both took diagnostic work to determine the ultimate problem before repairs could be done - in other words required a shop.  None of my other (on road) vehicles have every stranded me.  If something happens that I can’t easily diagnose and repair quickly/easily, I have tow coverage and will get the rig to a shop and let them deal with the issue.  Knock on wood, this practice has worked well for me.  The two times the truck had to go to the shop it was inconvenient, but didn’t end the trips we were on.  We improvised and were able to continue on in different ways.

Amen.

I carry some filters, air governor, some air line repair supplies and a modest (embarrassing by David's standard) tool kit...

 

Edited by Av8r3400

Av8r3400
Thunderstruck - 2012 Volvo VNL 730 D13 iShift
Slick - 2021 Grand Design Momentum 397TH

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I'd rather die trying to live - Than live trying not to die.   -Leonard Perry

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10 hours ago, Av8r3400 said:

Amen.

I carry some filters, air governor, some air line repair supplies and a modest (embarrassing by David's standard) tool kit...

 

Yeah, I’m kinda embarrassed to pull out my Kobalt, Husky, and Craftsman around him, especially when he pulls out his Louis Vuitton Snap-On tool box.  But you know those Kenworth folks.  😀

Edited by SuiteSuccess

2006 Volvo 780 "Hoss" Volvo D12, 465hp, 1650 ft/lbs tq., ultrashift

Bed Build by "JW Morgan's Custom Welding"

2017 DRV 39DBRS3

2013 Smart Passion Coupe "Itty Bitty"

 

"Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first!"

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7 hours ago, SuiteSuccess said:

Yeah, I’m kinda embarrassed to pull out my Kobalt, Husky, and Craftsman around him, especially when he pulls out his Louis Vuitton Snap-On tool box.  But you know those Kenworth folks.  😀

I thought he pretty much double tows a Snap-On truck…

Edited by Av8r3400

Av8r3400
Thunderstruck - 2012 Volvo VNL 730 D13 iShift
Slick - 2021 Grand Design Momentum 397TH

TEq81qV.jpg

I'd rather die trying to live - Than live trying not to die.   -Leonard Perry

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