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Old 11-10-2017, 09:45 AM   #1
Supe
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Default P2138/ECM Replacement

Hi all. 2008 Astra XR, 98K miles, went through 5 or so drive by wire accelerator pedal assemblies over the years. This time, replacement didn't cure the issue. Repair shop checked for water intrusion per the TSB, and found the wiring harness to be fine. They commented that they checked the ECM voltages for the DBW circuits and they did not match, and commented that the ECM needed to be replaced.

My question is, what does the ECM replacement entail? To save some money, I would prefer to physically swap the ECM itself, but I'm unsure as to whether the vehicle will run at that point. I'm assuming for inspection purposes, the ECM needs to be reprogrammed for VIN matching at a minimum. Is this something only a dealership can typically do?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 11-10-2017, 10:23 AM   #2
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: P2138/ECM Replacement

I have zero info and experience with Astras. What I do know is that some, if not all, ECMs require programming by GM unless a repair shop uses the same equipment to program ECMs. The proprietary firmware and scantool are designed to cover all GM models with other car makers doing the same to service their family of vehicles. Very few repair shops can afford to but several thousand dollar scantools if they seldom use it so they tend to send out this repair to dealers without informing customers. Some independent shops will have GM scantool equipment and still charge similar fees since they're not getting a break to access GM info online. Nothing's free when it comes to programming a new blank ecm. You can call around and ask GM too what costs are as they can vary from dealer to dealer. Independent diagnostic shops may be able to program blank ECMS but you have to call them. The reason for programming is more than simply swapping parts like you would with personal computers.

There's a liability issue for who's responsible if a blank ecm isn't programmed correctly (it does occur), all programming done by GM ensures up to date changes are incorporated since GM uses online sources to have the latest info from corporate headquarters. Try searching for buying time to use the same web services. You may be astonished at costs. Dealers having access simply pass on costs to customers. After all, its a business and businesses are in business to make money. Service bulletins inform dealers of changes to keep abreast as new wrinkles pop up. Try getting a repair shop to pay for these bulletins if they aren't paying already for Mitchell data to access every service manual in the world. Information isn't cheap.

Some info programmed may be VIN, Passlock or Passkey, firmware updates, options, etc..Without the correct scantool to have access to programming, some places may hide the fact that they can't program anything and may simply try swapping know used ECMs to replace a faulty one. Its buyer beware. Third party places may state they can program or repair engine computers but again, past threads have shown this to be untrue.

Sometimes we have to pay the piper and GM may be last resort to verify a problem lies with a faulty ecm. It may be wiring or other sensor and without expertise in EFI systems its anyone's guess where your problem is. Several pedal replacements should have given you hints that the pedal isn't the problem with this drive by wire system.

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Old 11-10-2017, 11:42 AM   #3
AstraFasta
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Default Re: P2138/ECM Replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Supe View Post
Hi all. 2008 Astra XR, 98K miles, went through 5 or so drive by wire accelerator pedal assemblies over the years. This time, replacement didn't cure the issue. Repair shop checked for water intrusion per the TSB, and found the wiring harness to be fine. They commented that they checked the ECM voltages for the DBW circuits and they did not match, and commented that the ECM needed to be replaced.

My question is, what does the ECM replacement entail? To save some money, I would prefer to physically swap the ECM itself, but I'm unsure as to whether the vehicle will run at that point. I'm assuming for inspection purposes, the ECM needs to be reprogrammed for VIN matching at a minimum. Is this something only a dealership can typically do?

Thanks in advance.
Before replacing parts...another defect in the Astra is water entry into one of the "sealed" electrical boxes under the hood; that created accelerator and other odd codes a few times. Easy access and easy fix.

I think I fixed it by opening the box, inspecting the components carefully for damage and drying. Then resealed the box better than GM did.

Check out the following post:

http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho....php?p=2193845

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