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'94 Intrepid Will Not Run

Discussion in 'LH: Large Cars, 1993-2004' started by Jerry Simcik, Jan 12, 2014.

  1. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    I have a '94 Intrepid that I am stumped on.

    It has a 3.3L engine.

    It will not run. It was running just fine on a recent trip to the grocery store, but upon returning from the store, it would not start. It would crank though. To try to remedy this while in town, we replaced the crank sensor, cam sensor, and coil pack - nothing changed.

    We towed the car home, and started doing some diagnotics on it...

    We checked fuel pressure, and it's good (~50 PSI).

    We checked the Green/Orange wire (ASD signal) at the alternator, the injectors, and the ingition coil - it has a momentary 12V when the key is turned on, and a constant 12V when cranking.

    We checked all the relays and fuses again, and they are all good.

    After some research, we decided to replace the ingition switch. This did not change anything...

    About 1 week before this occured, the BCM shorted out and was replaced.

    The car will run for at most a few seconds before dying again. Typically it starts, then immediately sputters and dies...

    Any suggestions? Failed PCM???
     
  2. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator
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    Any fault codes or other electrical anomalies noticed?
    If the injectors are getting 12v(+) and fuel pressure is good, is the ground side (-) of the injectors being lost and keeping the injectors closed? If a carb cleaner is sprayed sparingly into the throttle body, will it keep running? (Use caution with flammable aerosols as a an air horn 'pop-back' or other source of ignition could cause fire and injury).
    Any VTSS (factory alarm) system or cluster display bus communication issues?
    The BCM was from a car without VTSS if yours isn't equipped with VTSS, correct?
     
  3. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    No CEL - don't have the scanner at the moment to dig further than that...

    Didn't check ground at the injectors, but did clean the two forward frame grounding points.

    Not sure on this - haven't tried yet - what would this indicate (other than a lack of fuel, obviously...)?

    No VTSS on this car. No apparent CCD/BUS issues.

    Replacement BCM car may have had VTSS. I will double check. What issues would this cause? As far as I knew, the BCM's from 93-96 were identical...

    More answers when I have them! Thanks for your suggestions.
     
  4. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator
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    If the PCM is not seeing engine rotation through the crank sensor, it will not keep the ASD relay latched on after starting. This could possibly be wiring/connector related in the 'start/run' circuit if the crank sensor has been replaced.
    A crank sensor for a SBEC controller is necessary, hopefully an OEM part. Make sure that you have the correct part.
    If you can keep the vehicle running by spraying cleaner into the throttle body (again, be careful), then that would confirm that fuel is being shut off.
    Swapping a VTSS-enabled BCM into a non-VTSS vehicle can cause the vehicle to repeatedly start/stall, if this is the case. The VTSS works by allowing the vehicle to first fire up and then cuts off the fuel injector grounds for vehicle theft protection.
    Once the PCM learns that it has a VTSS-enabled BCM, it can't unlearn it.
    I hope that the swapped BCM wasn't VTSS-enabled.
     
  5. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    Just confirmed that it was a VTSS BCM... :(

    Already tried a non-VTSS version - no joy.

    So, will replacing the PCM and using the non-VTSS BCM fix the issue?
     
  6. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator
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    Unfortunately the only fix after the VTSS 'virus' has passed between the modules is to replace both the PCM and BCM with non-VTSS infected modules. It can't be undone once done.
    If it could be undone, then that would defeat the intrinsic anti-theft properties of the system. The crooks would have a field day.
     
  7. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    That is understandable... Though you would think that the PCM would be programmed from the factory to look for the VTSS or not, rather than learning 20 years later.

    Anyway...

    Just to confirm, the PCM from a 3.5L will not work with the 3.3L, correct? A 3.3L, non-VTSS PCM is my only option, correct?
    What is the best way to confirm that the PCM is a non-VTSS unit?
     
  8. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator
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    Either module can learn VTSS at anytime one is introduced to the bus and the PCM/BCM 'handshake' is performed. That is when the VTSS virus is passed.
    The only sure way to get a non-VTSS module is to get one from a reputable seller/rebuilder that states that the unit is a non-VTSS. Or knowing the VIN of the vehicle that it came off of, one can ask a dealer (or me?) to look up the Chrysler option sheet that the car came with to make sure that it is a non-VTSS car. 1994 is kind of old and I hope that the information is still available. The actual part # of the modules didn't change because any module could learn that it had VTSS. VTSS is tied to the VIN of the vehicle.
    You will need both a non-VTSS PCM and a non-VTSS BCM changed at the same time with the battery disconnected to come out of this with a running vehicle.
    See FAQ's and tips:
    http://sosdiagnostics.com/Chrysler.html
    These folks claim to be able to disable VTSS in both modules, but I have no experience with being able to do that except maybe on an Authorized Chrysler module repair depot level.
     
  9. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your help! We have a non-VTSS BCM, and I can easily perform the well documented reset procedure for that just to confirm. (grounding pin #3 on the black connector - the input for the door switches) The PCM, I'm not so sure about. (Though I would think that if grounding the pin to the BCM disabled the VTSS system on the BCM, that grounding the similar BCM to PCM connection would have the same effect. Perhaps I can experiment prior to replacing the units.We have a few good pull-a-part yards close by, so we will probably hit those up to try to find a car that does not have VTSS. I know if the car has auto A/C it has VTSS, but the other dead giveaway that the car has VTSS is the little buldge on the dash where the LED and sensor resides, right? No light/buldge/whatever it's called, no VTSS, correct?

    Thanks for your help! I have some good friends that are Chrysler techs, though they haven't been around long enough to know about these cars (when I told him it had a 3.3L he asked me if I meant 3.2L, then got very confused when I told him "no, it's the minivan motor" - haha), so I do appreciate the offer for further assistance. If I need some, I will be sure to ask! Thanks!
     
  10. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    Well, got it working!

    I grounded out Pin 3 on Connector 1, and the VTSS system was disabled. Car starts and runs just fine now. So, maybe you can't ever remove the VTSS system, but you can defeat it.
     
  11. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    Well, shoot. Fixed one problem, found another.

    Okay, so now, any time the rear window defroster is turned on, the fuel guage drops to empty and the fuel light comes on.

    The car runs fine otherwise.

    Any suggestions? Perhaps a wiring diagram to determine where the two share a link?
     
  12. Jesse Lackman

    Jesse Lackman New Member

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    What connector is connector 1? PCM connector? Pin 3 on the PCM connector?
     
  13. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    Connectors 1-3 are on the BCM. They are White, Gray, and Black, respectively.

    I meant to update this thread, and forgot all about it.

    This poor car was very unlucky...

    Some how, a short occurred in the car. It appears that the short originated from the ground strap on the radio rubbing into the power supply wire for the blower motor (which runs through the control unit). This melted several wires in the dash and under the hood, and eventually shorted out the original BCM (which lead to the VTSS issue). After taking the dash apart, we found that several wires were melted together through the length of the harness. Some of the damage extends beyond the dash harness. There was some damage under the hood, and even more in the main harness that runs along the drivers side to the rear of the car. It appears that it is not worth fixing at this point.

    What is very frustrating to us is that no fuses blew. None. Nada. Zilch. Zero. Nothing.

    We cannot figure out how the system was able to feed so much current that it could melt so many wires together (literally welded them together in several places), cause so much damage, and fry the BCM, but NEVER blow a fuse. Still, many of the wires carry power!!! Only certain circuits do not work, like the rear window defogger, and that is only because they are short circuiting, not because they don't have power.

    I find it very odd that the fuses are not blowing. Had a fuse blown, it would have likely prevented all the other damage to wiring harnesses, and would have most likely meant the car would have stayed in service for many more years... It's kind of sad.
     
  14. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES"
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    That much melted insulation and hot metal should have produced a terrible, noticeable odor inside the car. Did you smell anything?
     
  15. Jerry Simcik

    Jerry Simcik Well-Known Member

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    It did, it smoked like hell too. We thought it was on fire at first. The car was running at the time. (I was not driving it.) It was stopped and shut down immediately. A fire extinguisher was pulled out, but no flames seen so was not used. The car sat for about 20 minutes. No obvious issue was found. The key was turned back on. Everything appeared okay, no further smell or smoke. The car was started and allowed to idle. Again, no further smell or smoke. The car drove home just fine.

    This was prior to us finding the shorted BCM and having the VTSS issue. The car still runs and drives, but there are still some issues. When we were diagnosing them, we saw the extent of the damage. Not wanting to cause more issues, the car has sat since then. We will most likely be scrapping it, sadly.
     

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