The engine control unit is an essential part of your car’s engine control system. It is one component that needs to be in perfect condition as long as your car is on the road. This is primarily because, as the main control system in your car, the ECU determines the engine performance and also the degree of smoothness when the car accelerates.
Regardless of model, the ECU is a crucial component in all cars. This means that when the ECU is not working properly, this could cause several issues with the car. In some scenarios, you might even be unable to start the car let alone drive it. And whether you like or not, a bad ECU means trouble for your car and must be replaced with immediate effect.
So, to ensure that an ECU problem doesn’t catch you by surprise, here are some telltale signs that you should look out for at all times:
- Engine malfunction–When the engine won’t perform, then without a doubt, you have an issue somewhere. Experts say that engine malfunction is the number one sign of a faulty Ford ECU. And the indications of an engine malfunction include unexplainable timings and fuel settings, reduction in fuel economy, poor acceleration and power issues.
- Erratic engine performance – This is also a sign of a failing ECU although it might go unnoticed, especially if you are not a keen driver. However, fact of the matter is that a faulty ECU may cause engine misfiring or stalling. And the bad news is that this engine behavior may come and go and may not happen again for some time. Most drivers will ignore it while others totally forget about it.
- The check engine lights come on –Just like the name suggests, when the light comes on, that means that you should check your engine. What happens is that the computer in your car detects problems with the components, sensors or circuits and then lights up the check engine light automatically. In a few circumstances however, the check engine lights might come on for no apparent reason, so it is best that you do a diagnostic test before assuming that your ECU is faulty.
- The car won’t start – This is an obvious symptom of a failing engine control unit. If your car does not start, contact your local mechanic and explain your troubleshooting issue. You should talk to a car expert is because only through a complete diagnosis will you be able to know for sure that your ECU is the reason your car won’t start.
If you don’t notice any issue mentioned above and you still suspect that your Ford ECU is not in perfect state, then make sure that your car is inspected by a professional technician. And when it is confirmed that your ECU is faulty, your mechanic will advise you to replace it with a new engine control unit. And note that most mechanics recommended ECU replacement and not repair.