1996 Ford Probe Not running

Tiny
JUSTBCUZ1012
  • MEMBER
  • 1996 FORD PROBE
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 130,000 MILES
One day the car just stopped. I took it to a local garage and they put it on the coputer to test it. It said the plug on the aircleaner was bad they replaced it still nothing. Next they tested the fuel pump and the relay in the trunk area. They were fine, the fuel pump read 42 lbs pressure. Next they checked the timing and that was fine then they hooked up a fuel bottle up front and the motor ran so they tested some more and said it was the dist. It was replaced with a new one still nothing. The next thing I did was contact a ford mechanic and he said with all that was done it was the PCM coputer. I was looking around and see there is a Ecm comp. And I was wondering what is what with these ECM and PCM also will they fit from the same years or what is the best way to get a used on and be sure it is the right one
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Wednesday, August 4th, 2010 AT 3:12 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Hello and thanks for donating

The ECM is engine control module and PCM is powertrain control module. Very similar items, these are the computers that act as the "main brain" for the vehicle. They will send many different signals to different areas such as when to spark and where to keep timing to prevent pinging. You will want to keep a used PCM within the same year of the 96 probe to ensure you get the right one. You can match up the part number on your old PCM to the used PCM to ensure it is indeed the correct one.
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Wednesday, August 4th, 2010 AT 11:20 PM
Tiny
JUSTBCUZ1012
  • MEMBER
With the info I gave you on the problem is the replacement of the PCM going to solve my problem? I am already out $200 for a distributor. If I buy a ECM is the PCM part of that or are they seperate? I wish I could donate more, this service is a great thing to be able to access but I am disabled and funds are kinda limited. I am sorry.
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Thursday, August 5th, 2010 AT 3:55 PM
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Well general rule is that it takes 3 things for engine to fire. It takes good spark, good fuel flow and good compression. Since the fuel system was tested good and I believe you said the spark was good as well, that still leaves compression. I wouldn't jump to replacing computer without first having the compression tested in all cylinders.
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Thursday, August 5th, 2010 AT 3:58 PM
Tiny
JUSTBCUZ1012
  • MEMBER
They did have it running by putting a fuel bottle on around by the pvc hose or somewhere up front. This is why they thought something was wrong with the distributor. They said something was not telling the fuel to burn in the injectors and I guess that some how bypassed it. When they did some testing upfront with the plugs that go to the injectors at first he said If onle one bar was firing and not the other it was the dist. Well beings that was replaced and still not working he thinks it is the computer now. I was told by a ford mechanic it is the PCM COMPUTER THAT WAS BAD. I DO NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS COMPUTER STUFF SO BEFORE I BOUGHT IT I JUST WANTED TO KNOW IF IT WAS SEPERATE FROM THE ECM. Sorry just noticed the cap lock was on. I see a lot of ECM computers used but not any PCM computers. If it is part of a whole unit such as the ECM I might be cheaper off buying it together. I hope this explains it a little better.
Thank you,
Tom
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Thursday, August 5th, 2010 AT 4:22 PM
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Your specific vehicle has a PCM, powertrain control module. There is no ECM, engine control module. They are basically the same thing, it is just called differently by different manufacturers. Your PCM is the main computer on the Probe, as an ECM maybe the main computer on a honda civic for example. The PCM is a little box with usually 2 or 3 electrical connectors going to it. Your symptoms, from what you have described now, do seem likely to come from a failed computer. Again, the computer for your Probe is called a Powertrain Control Module rather than Engine Control Module. It is an electrical box that must be replaced as a whole, there is no parts to it that can be rebuilt or replaced separately.
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Thursday, August 5th, 2010 AT 4:29 PM
Tiny
JUSTBCUZ1012
  • MEMBER
Thank you SO MUCH for your help. I just had a great weight lifted from my shoulders. Now I can try to find the proper part.
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Thursday, August 5th, 2010 AT 4:57 PM

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