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  • ECM Failure

    Hello fellow MC owners. I am hoping to get some answers to something two dealers cannot figure out. Last year I purchased a 2003 X7 from the original owners with only 125 hours on the boat. It was rarely used each year. In 2017 the ECM failed and was replaced, but the reason for the failure is not known and the old ECM was not kept to potentially get a code reading. After putting about 10 hours on the boat, the boat went into limp mode and the ECM eventually failed. It has been repaired twice by OBD MEFI Burn on the West Coast and at the advice of another dealer to not continue to repair the old one, I dropped a new one in. After looking very hard, I thought I found a wire arcing in the harness and reinsulated it thinking I found the problem. No luck, another ECM failure. I have the 350 MCX and through the process of elimination on electrical components the following has been replaced: distributor cap, rotor, ignition control module, spark plugs/wires and ignition coil. On start up (when running) the check engine light would come off/on intermittently, some black smoke from engine, idle would adjust higher on it's own then settle back down (sounded like maybe a TPS issue, but that should not fry an ECM). MEFI Burn codes indicate a failure based on "improper grounding near the distributor". It's an electrical issue for sure that I can't seem to solve and looking for suggestions. One dealer recommended an entire new wiring harness, but the part is obsolete (801066) and a private rebuild of the harness has quotes from $1,800 to $3,000. The boat does have aftermarket, from the dealer, installed PerfectPass. I read a PP bulletin where MC was having grounding issues at their "grounding block" if anyone has tips on that one. I am not that familiar with using an OHM meter, but can learn if I need to trace a power spike or ground issue somewhere...thanks so much!

  • #2
    Originally posted by Shredh20 View Post
    Hello fellow MC owners. I am hoping to get some answers to something two dealers cannot figure out.

    Last year I purchased a 2003 X7 from the original owners with only 125 hours on the boat. It was rarely used each year. In 2017 the ECM failed and was replaced, but the reason for the failure is not known and the old ECM was not kept to potentially get a code reading.

    After putting about 10 hours on the boat, the boat went into limp mode and the ECM eventually failed.

    It has been repaired twice by OBD MEFI Burn on the West Coast and at the advice of another dealer to not continue to repair the old one, I dropped a new one in. After looking very hard, I thought I found a wire arcing in the harness and reinsulated it thinking I found the problem. No luck, another ECM failure.

    I have the 350 MCX and through the process of elimination on electrical components the following has been replaced:
    • distributor cap,
    • rotor,
    • ignition control module,
    • spark plugs/wires and
    • ignition coil.


    On start up (when running) the check engine light would come off/on intermittently, some black smoke from engine, idle would adjust higher on it's own then settle back down (sounded like maybe a TPS issue, but that should not fry an ECM).

    MEFI Burn codes indicate a failure based on "improper grounding near the distributor".

    It's an electrical issue for sure that I can't seem to solve and looking for suggestions.

    One dealer recommended an entire new wiring harness, but the part is obsolete (801066) and a private rebuild of the harness has quotes from $1,800 to $3,000.

    The boat does have aftermarket, from the dealer, installed PerfectPass.

    I read a PP bulletin where MC was having grounding issues at their "grounding block" if anyone has tips on that one.

    I am not that familiar with using an OHM meter, but can learn if I need to trace a power spike or ground issue somewhere...thanks so much!
    That's a lot of steps for your issues. I had to sort it out to read through it.

    I got nothing but best on the resolution.

    .
    93 190
    (safe click)

    Comment


    • #3
      Grounds can be "reinforced" basically anything that is supposed to be a ground can be grounded better by connecting a jumper wire directly to basically anything metal on the engine. Literally no harm in running a spare ground from the negative post of the battery to the block to the helm and then anything grounded can get a second ground wire to that wire.

      Causing the failure of the ECM... not sure on that - talking to MEFI burn what specifically failed in the ECM?

      Wiring harness testing can be done by probing the wires set to Ohms where 0 ohms is the wires are 100% connected and infinity ohms is an open (not connected) wire.

      If your harness for instance has 2 wires that shouldn't touch they should have a infinity ohm resistance between them. If they are supposed to be connected together they should be near a very low number like 0 ohms indicating there is very little resistance. What you'd not expect to see is a middle value of items that shouldn't connect.

      By 03 the PP harness is factory installed and shouldn't really have any connection to the ECM - it gets a Tach signal from the distributor, a power lead, a ground lead, and maybe has a paddle wheel speedo lead but none of these originate or connect to the computer.

      Comment


      • #4
        the power to the ECM can be measured... do you know what the current limit is to it? Does it have a inline fuse?

        shooting a bit in the dark but if no fuse to the ECM (i would think there is) then add one or the one you have doesn't work?

        possible to put an inline voltage/amp meter to read what is going in?

        is there a way to check to see if you have a ground through the ECM some how that isn't desirable..

        where you had your wire issue i would open that up and look at all the wires in there to make sure you don't have another offender...

        good luck electrical ***....

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks waterlogged, much appreciated...going with Philippians 4:6 on this one...TY

          Comment


          • #6
            thanks for your reply MC addict, much apprecaited

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi curver900...I wish I knew the answers to those questions...I will start looking, not aware of a fuse to the ECM but makes sense...thanks so much

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Shredh20 View Post
                MEFI Burn codes indicate a failure based on "improper grounding near the distributor".
                That would almost certainly be "DTC 42 - Ignition Control (IC) Circuit Fault, IC Grounded or Open, Grounded Bypass". But the problem indicated by the DTC is telling you the IC control output from the ECM is either grounded or disconnected. That situation will not damage the ECU.

                Actually, It's pretty darn hard to fry an ECM. Nearly every input and output has ample protection against shorts and other wiring faults.

                Can you explain more about who and how it was determined the ECM was damaged? And what symptom occurred when the ECM was believed to be damaged?
                -----------------------------------
                Mastercraft ProStar 2019 5.7L - Current
                Mastercraft X25 2014 6.2L - Current
                Nautique 200 OB 2012 5.7L - Current

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                • #9
                  Hi Shredh20, have you had any success fixing the boat? Ive got a similar ecu frying issue with my 2005 x45 and we are stumped.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hi JP...the ECM diagnosis came from OBD MEFI Burn Diagnostics on the West Coast (http://mefiburn.com/). My ECM was repaired twice, then I dropped in a new one. I am unfamiliar with the terms above. The MC dealer diagnosed the failed ECM and recommended mefiburn for the repair. Any chance I can reach you via phone to discuss the DTC-42, is that a failure code? TY

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi DaveyD, unfortunately not yet...but I will keep you posted. What has your dealer indicated if anything? Is your boat running at all, what did you do the first time it fried and do you have the 350 MCX...TY

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        PS...the progression was loss of power, check engine light coming on/off, at one point boat went into limp mode and then stopped running. Would turn over, but never start. this happened twice, third time around was boat started, check engine light coming off/on, black smoke out the back, idle revving on it's own up/down and then stalled, only to not start again...thanks again.

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                        • #13
                          JP...another reply...the ECM failure was code 51 according to MEFIBurn. Any suggestions on a code 51 repair or what to look for?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            DTC 51 is "Calibration Checksum Error", which often does indicate an internal ECM failure. Technically it means the ECM setup data memory is corrupted and that can be reloaded. But, those kinds of corruptions shouldn't really happen, so in practical terms it does usually mean something is internally wrong with the ECM. Maybe when you say MEFIBurn tried to fix the original ECM, they simply reloaded the configuration to see if that would take care of the issue.

                            Was the replacement ECM brand new or was it a used or repaired ECM? If both ECM's failed with DTC 51, then that sounds like either incredibly bad luck or the replacement ECM wasn't new and is also a lemon.
                            -----------------------------------
                            Mastercraft ProStar 2019 5.7L - Current
                            Mastercraft X25 2014 6.2L - Current
                            Nautique 200 OB 2012 5.7L - Current

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              If the replacement ECM wasn't a new one, I would replace it with a new one from somewhere like https://www.bakesonline.com
                              -----------------------------------
                              Mastercraft ProStar 2019 5.7L - Current
                              Mastercraft X25 2014 6.2L - Current
                              Nautique 200 OB 2012 5.7L - Current

                              Comment

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