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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm working on figuring out what's going on with our 2011 T&C. Last week my wife pulled on to our street and she said she felt a bit of a "shift" in the car, couldn't really explain it further, as she was turning, and suddenly the a/c stopped blowing cold air and all the dash lights came on, no loss in power though. She drove/coasted the half block to our house and as soon as she went to turn off the van, everything electronic just died I think as she was turning the key/pressing the button. There was zero power in the van after that, to anything.

I tested and replaced the battery, it was shot, couldn't even trickle charge it (though I honestly didn't try too hard, I like have fresh batteries in my vehicles). I pulled the alternator and had it tested a few times at a local OReillys, where it tested bad, only putting out about 8.7v, so I replaced that as well, with one I watched them test on their bench. So the van now starts, but the battery isn't getting a charge. I checked all the wires and fuses a few times, tested grounds, all that jazz, have continuity where I need it, no parasitic draw on the battery, though I'd be up for testing whatever again if need be. Then I tested the field wire to the alternator from the PCM and I believe I'm not getting much of anything coming through. I'm assuming I'm supposed to be reading 12v with the key on, or at least somewhere in V, not mV?

I'm currently trying to find a pinout for the connectors on the PCM. I bought a digital FSM but haven't been able to find it in there, so I can check for continuity on that wire. So if anyone knows which of the 30 pins in which of the four connectors the field wire is, I'd be very very grateful for that information! Otherwise, is there a surefire way to verify that the PCM is bad? I'd reeeeeally prefer not to drop $400-600+ if I can avoid it, and have to haul it to a dealership to get it programmed.

Besides finding the pinout diagram, the only other test I can think of doing is jumping the field pin on the alternator itself for a second to see if it's able to charge the battery. I know that puts a decent strain on everything, but I'm not entirely sure what else to do.

It also now has intermittent starting issues after the episode last week. After I start it a few times, even with the battery charged enough, it will not crank at all. I hear the relays click, but no power is being routed to the starter apparently. I'm sure that's also related, but I only have enough time right now to research one issue, in hopes and prayers that that solution will fix all of the issues...
 

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From Chiltons:
"The Powertrain Control Module (PCM) monitors critical input and output circuits of the charging system, making sure they are operational. A Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) is assigned to each input and output circuit monitored by the OBD system. Some circuits are checked continuously and some are checked only under certain conditions.

If the OBD system senses that a monitored circuit is bad, it will put a DTC into electronic memory. The DTC will stay in electronic memory as long as the circuit continues to be bad. The PCM is programmed to clear the memory after 40 good trips if the problem does not occur again."

If you go to your local library they have this resource, or one like it, available for free. I would recommend trying that and getting further into the diagnosis before further money is spent on this repair.

Your FSM should have the wiring diagrams for this, but if not, there are online resources like Mitchell and Alldata that can help with further diagnosis.

If you have the Chrysler FSM, it should have a troubleshooting "table" that directs your process in finding the issue (no different than what the dealership would do).

What codes are you getting and what scanner are you using to get these codes?
 

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If you put in a good alternator and battery and still not getting over 12-13 v across the battery terminals, then I guarantee your pcm is bad.

Seems like to be a common problem... should be sticky.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
From Chiltons:
"The Powertrain Control Module (PCM) monitors critical input and output circuits of the charging system, making sure they are operational. A Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) is assigned to each input and output circuit monitored by the OBD system. Some circuits are checked continuously and some are checked only under certain conditions.

If the OBD system senses that a monitored circuit is bad, it will put a DTC into electronic memory. The DTC will stay in electronic memory as long as the circuit continues to be bad. The PCM is programmed to clear the memory after 40 good trips if the problem does not occur again."

If you go to your local library they have this resource, or one like it, available for free. I would recommend trying that and getting further into the diagnosis before further money is spent on this repair.

Your FSM should have the wiring diagrams for this, but if not, there are online resources like Mitchell and Alldata that can help with further diagnosis.

If you have the Chrysler FSM, it should have a troubleshooting "table" that directs your process in finding the issue (no different than what the dealership would do).

What codes are you getting and what scanner are you using to get these codes?
Thank you for posting that. I had found that in my research, but I guess I never fully believe that any one source is telling me the entire story…

That’s another thing- I’m not getting any codes, but I also may not be running it long enough for codes to be registered. I checked for codes as soon as I got the battery and alternator replaced too though and didn’t find any there either after the van initially died. Admittedly I’m using a pretty basic scan tool to check for codes, the Motopower MP69033. It’s got great reviews on Amazon though so it can’t POSSIBIY be that…… kidding…

We’re fans of the library, so I’ll swing by and see what they have, and I’ll look into those other resources you mentioned also to confirm. So far it does seem like our pcm is bad…
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If you put in a good alternator and battery and still not getting over 12-13 v across the battery terminals, then I guarantee your pcm is bad.

Seems like to be a common problem... should be sticky.
Yeah, it just doesn’t look like there can be much else involved, unless that field wire got damaged somehow, which doesn’t seem likely…
 

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If all the wiring and grounds are good, you know for a fact the new alternator is good (many aftermarkets are junk out of the box), and the battery is fully charged then the PCM is the only logical solution.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If all the wiring and grounds are good, you know for a fact the new alternator is good (many aftermarkets are junk out of the box), and the battery is fully charged then the PCM is the only logical solution.
And that's my logic too. But there's a small part of me that's holding out hope that there's a broken wire or dirty connection somewhere. I just need to find that pinout to shoot the relevant wires to confirm and then I'll probably call it
 

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Did you check the Ignition Switch and Starter Relay? Happened in my 2006 Jeep Grand Cherokee and in my 92 Integra.
The T&C may be wired so that the alternator does not drag while cranking and the starter may need to tell the PCM its done cranking.

And that's my logic too. But there's a small part of me that's holding out hope that there's a broken wire or dirty connection somewhere. I just need to find that pinout to shoot the relevant wires to confirm and then I'll probably call it
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Did you check the Ignition Switch and Starter Relay? Happened in my 2006 Jeep Grand Cherokee and in my 92 Integra.
The T&C may be wired so that the alternator does not drag while cranking and the starter may need to tell the PCM its done cranking.
I did check the starter relay but not the ignition switch because of all the WIN madness Chrysler decided to add to it, haven't even touched any of that. But I just ordered a pre-programmed PCM that should be here at the end of the week, so that'll give me some time to look into any ignition issues I might be having. I appreciate the suggestions
 

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I looked for my pcm in the area it's supposed to be yesterday and didn't see it, don't know what it looks like.

Can someone please take a picture of it in it's location, and removed? Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I looked for my pcm in the area it's supposed to be yesterday and didn't see it, don't know what it looks like.

Can someone please take a picture of it in it's location, and removed? Thanks
Way to steal my thread...

;) kidding

What's the vehicle? If it's close to the same as mine, a 2011 T&C, the PCM is in the engine bay tucked behind the front of the driver's fender liner. If you take the liner off and turn the wheels to the right, it's easy to see and get to. It's a plain metal box with four bulky connectors attached to it. To remove the connectors, you need to pull the red locks away from the PCM body and depress the locking tabs on each one. The only annoyance are the wire bundles crowding the space, but it's not too bad.
If you have a different vehicle, I'm not sure, I'd have to google it
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Just an update, if anyone is curious, I ended up ordering a used PCM from ebay (got a one year warranty to go with it, just in case), preprogrammed with our van's VIN, and it fixed the issue so far. Now I just need to change the transmission fluid, fix an issue with a fuel injector, run by the dealership to have an ABS module programmed, and we should be good to go for a while!

Thank you all for your help, I really sincerely appreciate it
 

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Just an update, if anyone is curious, I ended up ordering a used PCM from ebay (got a one year warranty to go with it, just in case), preprogrammed with our van's VIN, and it fixed the issue so far. Now I just need to change the transmission fluid, fix an issue with a fuel injector, run by the dealership to have an ABS module programmed, and we should be good to go for a while!

Thank you all for your help, I really sincerely appreciate it
Great Job on fixing this issue! Good troubleshooting!
 
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