Should I replace the capacitors on my 30 year old car's Electronic Control Unit?

bwilliams60

Joined Nov 18, 2012
1,419
I do a fair amount of ECM work and I am a strong believer in preventative maintenance. I would take it to someone that deals with electronics and feels comfortable with the board, and have all 9 replaced with 105 degree Nichicon, Panasonic or other reputable cpacitors. They can be purchase from well known electronics vendors such as Digikey and Mouser. If you need help, PM me and I can help you out. If you ate in Canada, even better if you need someone to send it to.
 

narkeleptk

Joined Mar 11, 2019
545
i see these units destroyed by leaking caps often these days. Its not a bad idea at all to re cap it now before that happens. Anytime I have a ecu in for repair that is pre2000 I recap them. Its just too common of a failure at this age/use now.

Its an extremely comnon failure in the old Honda ECUs and for some reason in these it can sometimes cause pretty severe damage. The ford eec's and chrysler jtecs fail a lot but usually damage is not so bad.
 
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narkeleptk

Joined Mar 11, 2019
545
I have never had a problem with bad capacitors in an ECU. I have 4 vehicles that are over 20 years old: a 1990 BMW, 1990 F-150, 2000 Chrysler Town and Country, 2000 BMW.

The only problem I've attributed to bad capacitors was in a 10+ year old DVR. Four in the power supply section and all exhibited bulging.
I cant count how many early 90's F series ecus I have had to repair because the caps leaked and wreaked havoc. You really would be doing yourself a favor to replace them. If your truck starts having erratic idle you'll know its time.


heres a few random pulls from my photos. These are all 90~00 ecus I believe.
20200823_194413.jpg20200823_194422.jpg20200818_215908_HDR.jpg20200818_215915.jpg20201211_153853.jpg
 
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