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Old 08-14-2008   #1
GTAGUY65
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I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

I have been having trouble With my GTA the last few weeks and a shop just determined that the ECM is going out, now if I am going to replace this thing I would like to "upgrade" I have searched the threads and only found some info on chip tuning. well my GTA is mostly stock except for the new transmission with performance clutch packs, corvette servo, and 2000 stall converter. Can I buy a good ECM Pre-programed to provide good performance without a lot of hassel? thank you for your input..... 89 Gunmetal GTA 350
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Old 08-15-2008   #2
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Just go to your local GM dealer and get one. The Ecm is not what you will need burnes of you have a lot of mods, its the chip inside. hth
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1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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Old 08-15-2008   #3
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FearThisGTA
Just go to your local GM dealer and get one. The Ecm is not what you will need burnes of you have a lot of mods, its the chip inside. hth
Definitely go with GM. You can try www.gmpartsdirect.com They give a big discount, but their shipping is high. Still comes out less than buying from the dealer ( unless you can get the trade discount). If that is out of your price range, NAPA and others sell them as well.
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Old 08-15-2008   #4
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

I Noticed that "Hawks" sells the ECM also, stock for about 100.00 and custom burn ...200.00 are these GM ECMs??
So I am Assuming that the Original GM ECM has the best electronics and the most duarable . any suggestions on the programming of the Chip, for improved performance on a stock application, of course without sacrificing drivability and mileage
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Old 08-15-2008   #5
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTAGUY65
I Noticed that "Hawks" sells the ECM also, stock for about 100.00 and custom burn ...200.00 are these GM ECMs??
So I am Assuming that the Original GM ECM has the best electronics and the most duarable . any suggestions on the programming of the Chip, for improved performance on a stock application, of course without sacrificing drivability and mileage
No doubt that Hawks is a quality supplier, I would trust them over NAPA. GM units, from the dealers are not new, doubt that there are any new ones around anyway, but the GM units, from GM, have all the latest upgrades ( if any) and are good quality. I have not seen an aftermarket unit, they tend to be rebuilt GM units, but I would check. As for the custom burn, remember, that is only the chip, not the base ECM. I dont think your mods would require a custom burn. When you change cams/ heads, etc. then you wil need a custom burn. The stock 700-R4 tranny is not computer controlled.
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Old 08-15-2008   #6
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Thanks George, I was not sure if the lock-up torque converter was controlled by the ECM, also I'm not sure if you need to change the chip if you wanted to change the Thermostat to run a little cooler..... I just priced the ECM at the dealer not too bad with excange, a lot better price than what it cost for my mother's Olds Auroa ECM .............. Paul
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Old 08-15-2008   #7
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTAGUY65
Thanks George, I was not sure if the lock-up torque converter was controlled by the ECM, also I'm not sure if you need to change the chip if you wanted to change the Thermostat to run a little cooler..... I just priced the ECM at the dealer not too bad with excange, a lot better price than what it cost for my mother's Olds Auroa ECM .............. Paul
What gets confusing is that a 700-R4 is also a 4L60, the later 700-R4 is a 4L60E ( computer controlled. Not sure when the switch was made, but our tranny's are a 4L60. I think the easiest way to tell, is that if you have a TV cable, then it is a 4L60. There is no TV cable on the 4L60E . I am sure there is someone on this site, more knowledgable, who can give you more detail.
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Old 08-15-2008   #8
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

The dealer seems to have only one kind of ECM for the 350ci TPI model for 87-89 I am thinking of getting the ECM from gmparts direct with shipping approx 18.00 ...later on I may change the chip
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Old 08-15-2008   #9
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTAGUY65
The dealer seems to have only one kind of ECM for the 350ci TPI model for 87-89 I am thinking of getting the ECM from gmparts direct with shipping approx 18.00 ...later on I may change the chip
That is correct, one part number for 87 - 89 (01227165). They do not include a chip. Dont waste your money ( my opinion) on those after market chips. If you need a chip modified, work with a tuner and get the correct chip or an adapter/interface that works with your stock chip. Those chips from JET, Hypertech, etc. wont buy you anything. Most of them only work at WOT and that is not how you drive your car.
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Old 08-15-2008   #10
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

well this is a bummer, I put the new ECM in , and by the way since it already had an aftermarket ECM in it, GM would not take it for a core, so I went to Carquest where I used to work and I got an ECM, and the car runs the same. The mechanic shop was 99% sure that the ECM was causing the problem. Now they are saying it could be the PROM..... what is happening is that there is an inconsistant pulse going to the injectors. and when the ECM gets HOT according to them it won't even start. what could be happening ? frustrated!
If there is something indeed wrong with the prom could a tuner fix it?

sorry for my ignorance .. but what is WOT

Last edited by GTAGUY65; 08-15-2008 at 06:47 PM.
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Old 08-15-2008   #11
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTAGUY65
well this is a bummer, I put the new ECM in , and by the way since it already had an aftermarket ECM in it, GM would not take it for a core, so I went to Carquest where I used to work and I got an ECM, and the car runs the same. The mechanic shop was 99% sure that the ECM was causing the problem. Now they are saying it could be the PROM..... what is happening is that there is an inconsistant pulse going to the injectors. and when the ECM gets HOT according to them it won't even start. what could be happening ? frustrated!
If there is something indeed wrong with the prom could a tuner fix it?

sorry for my ignorance .. but what is WOT
There is no ignorance, just unfamiliarity with terms, WOT is wide open throttle. If you indeed have a defective prom, the tuner probably cant fix the problem. Unless of course, you find a tuner that provides a new prom. Send a PM to Munsongta. He is in touch with a tuner who has a very good reputation. I use pcmforless, but they make an adapter that goes in between the factory prom and the ECM. A defective prom will cause problems. The downside is that most tuners want the car in the shop. What you are up against is that most shops cant work with OBD I cars, too old.
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Old 08-15-2008   #12
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

well a lot of people put a negative connotation to the word ignorance it simply means unaware or little knowlege, I had little knowlege of the terms. ... Thanks for the info, I am going to try and make sure it is nothing else before I try and change the prom chip, I wish I still had my other TA so I could switch the proms to see if that is the problem, all this started when the transmission was re-installed the trans shop called me and said it would not start! went and put another distributor in it and then it ran fine for a few weeks , then it started to idle rough like it was missing on a couple of cylinders, One Mechanic told me to change the spark plugs, did that , still runs the same then it wont start until it cools down .... the diagnostics showed that it is getting an irratic pulse to the injectors, a friend told me that on his nissan it was a "heat sensor" .. it would turn off the injectors when it got hot and would not start until cool off. I don't even know if the TPI engine even has such a sensor. It is hard to find a 350 TPI engine with the ECM still attached in a wrecking yard. guess I 'll have to keep replacing parts until I find the problem, any more input is welcome... thanks

Last edited by GTAGUY65; 08-15-2008 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 08-16-2008   #13
FearThisGTA
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Just remember, to start with the simple stuff and move up. I am tellin ya that b/c it will save you a good bit of $$$.

Oh and as far as the Gm not taking the old one as a core. If you remove the prom( you will need it for the new one), then unless the ecm itself is an aftermarket part then there should be no reason why they wont take it back.
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Cliff Jones
1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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Old 08-16-2008   #14
george88gta
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTAGUY65
well a lot of people put a negative connotation to the word ignorance it simply means unaware or little knowlege, I had little knowlege of the terms. ... Thanks for the info, I am going to try and make sure it is nothing else before I try and change the prom chip, I wish I still had my other TA so I could switch the proms to see if that is the problem, all this started when the transmission was re-installed the trans shop called me and said it would not start! went and put another distributor in it and then it ran fine for a few weeks , then it started to idle rough like it was missing on a couple of cylinders, One Mechanic told me to change the spark plugs, did that , still runs the same then it wont start until it cools down .... the diagnostics showed that it is getting an irratic pulse to the injectors, a friend told me that on his nissan it was a "heat sensor" .. it would turn off the injectors when it got hot and would not start until cool off. I don't even know if the TPI engine even has such a sensor. It is hard to find a 350 TPI engine with the ECM still attached in a wrecking yard. guess I 'll have to keep replacing parts until I find the problem, any more input is welcome... thanks
here is a site that has a ton of info http://www.chevythunder.com/fuel%20i...g%20pg%20A.htm You have to page thru to find what you need, a bit cumbersome. Do you have a GM shop manual? Lots of truble shooting charts in there. A Haynes manual is OK, but not as informative as the GM manual. Why did you change the distributor? Did the tranny shop forget to remove it and lowered the engine to get to those wonderfully placed tranny bolts and crack it? Did you replace the cap as well? Did the distributor come with a new internal module? I have a 1988 GM manual and I will be in there later today, my car is running rough as well. I will see what they have for no start when hot. If there is a chart, I can scan it and send it to you. Keep in mind, this is a 1988, may be some differences from your car. Fearthis is right, it can get very expensive , quickly, if you just start replacing parts. At the back of each head, there are ground wires that are attached with the studs that hold down the A.I. R. crossover tube. Make sure those ground wires are not loose or damaged. Grounds are a big deal to the electronics on these cars. There is a temperature sensor, located in the front of the intake and if you are 1988 or earlier, there is also a cold start switch, next to the temperature sensor. 1989 dropped the cold start injector , also called the 9th injector,and the switch. I gather that you dont have a check engine light displayed? Make sure that the check engine light is working, should be on steady, with the ignition in the RUN position, engine not running. I will let you know what the book says.
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Old 08-16-2008   #15
GTAGUY65
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Well this is strange this was in the spring, I had it checked out before a trip to the coast. every thing checked out fine, then It was parked for a while because the tranmission went out. then I drove it to the transmisssion shop it was there for a few days.then it would not start...no spark! took the module in tested it it was fine, tested the distributor, it was not working. so I put in the distributor. it ran fine. then a couple of weeks after that it started missing only after it ran for a few minutes, Mostly noticeable at idle. I was assured it was the spark plugs. I took it to another shop they put plugs in it. still ran bad and would not start again after running for over 5 minutes or so. The shop traced it to the ECM or so they thought, they said that the injectors are getting an irratic pulse, I guess now I need to find out if I can just get a PROM chip for my car there may be some contact point or solder that seperates when the ecm gets hot, according to their theory. to answer questions Dist. came with new module, GM parts here told me that the ECM had to have the Original GM/AC/Delco stickering on for them to take it for core.. my old ecm had Blue Steak Electronics on it (I think it was a misprint "Bluestreak") made in Canada.. and the "Engine Light" is working correctly. I am not sure about the cold start injector it is an '89 but maybe it has to do with the actual production date. Thanks for all your input. its nice to have a little support!!
Oh I watched the guy take my tranny out in about 20 minutes!!! he does 700r4's all the time never loosened the engine mounts

Last edited by GTAGUY65; 08-16-2008 at 11:00 AM.
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Old 08-16-2008   #16
FearThisGTA
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Bluestreak is a product of Standard Ign.

As for the other shops it would appear they are guessing,imho.

It can still be the dist.
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Cliff Jones
1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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Old 08-16-2008   #17
george88gta
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTAGUY65
Well this is strange this was in the spring, I had it checked out before a trip to the coast. every thing checked out fine, then It was parked for a while because the tranmission went out. then I drove it to the transmisssion shop it was there for a few days.then it would not start...no spark! took the module in tested it it was fine, tested the distributor, it was not working. so I put in the distributor. it ran fine. then a couple of weeks after that it started missing only after it ran for a few minutes, Mostly noticeable at idle. I was assured it was the spark plugs. I took it to another shop they put plugs in it. still ran bad and would not start again after running for over 5 minutes or so. The shop traced it to the ECM or so they thought, they said that the injectors are getting an irratic pulse, I guess now I need to find out if I can just get a PROM chip for my car there may be some contact point or solder that seperates when the ecm gets hot, according to their theory. to answer questions Dist. came with new module, GM parts here told me that the ECM had to have the Original GM/AC/Delco stickering on for them to take it for core.. my old ecm had Blue Steak Electronics on it (I think it was a misprint "Bluestreak") made in Canada.. and the "Engine Light" is working correctly. I am not sure about the cold start injector it is an '89 but maybe it has to do with the actual production date. Thanks for all your input. its nice to have a little support!!
Oh I watched the guy take my tranny out in about 20 minutes!!! he does 700r4's all the time never loosened the engine mounts
I have removed/replaced a few trannys and you generally dont need to remove/loosen the engine mounts. You support the engine with a screw jack stand, support the tranny with a tranny jack,remove the cross member and lower the engine and tranny until you can reach the top bolts. If you dont remove the distributor, you will most likely crack the distributor, since they tend to hit the firewall. I wont be getting to the Firebird shop manual for a while. Just discovered why wifes Grand Prix doesnt start. Bunch of missing teeth on the flexplate. If I cant find a short cut, the transaxle has to come out to replace the flexplate. I do not like front wheel drive! A ton of parts have to be removed to get the transaxle out. Tempted to have the car towed to the dealer, or some other shop. Not a happy camper right now.
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Old 08-16-2008   #18
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

I have a spare Delco reman'd 165 ECM here at home.
I have no use for it, you would just have to drop your 89 memcal into it and off ya go. Shoot me a PM if you would like it. Cost would be 20 and shipping which is like 5-10 bucks tops. It worked fine in the 88 with the 88 memcal, and there is no change in ECM from 86-89 other than the rebuilds seem to lack a few of the jumped wires on some of the connections on the circuit board.
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Old 08-18-2008   #19
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Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Wonderfull, I get home from work today to try and do some other things on the GTA and Now I don't have Spark! I have power to the coil so I replaced the coil and still nothing .... never ending battle
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Old 08-19-2008   #20
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
Re: I NEED A ECM... Where to BUY?

Ck the ign mod and p/up assy.
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Cliff Jones
1991 GTA Trans Am
w/305,231 miles
on the original motor!!!!
Time of Death on motor, 4:07pm on 05/29/2010.
Hp:211.2@4200rpms/Tq.328.5@2700rpms
Best et: 13.959@97.05mph
Best mph: 98.3
Best 60' : 1.875 on BFG Comp TA's w/ 32 lbs of air in them
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