How to Choose the Best PCM for Your Ford Vehicle

Are you wondering why a PCM is such a big deal? Why many car models come with different PCM? Why is your vehicle currently malfunctioning, and performance levels are down?

The PCM is the central nervous system or the key to every operation in the car. Any adjustments, including engine timing, fuel usage, and mix, depending on its proper functioning. The maintenance of the car is less hectic in comparison to models without an electronic setup. 

PCM (power train module) is an engine computer that oversees the proper functioning of the car by identifying, solving, and managing the vehicle. It helps determine when to replace or repair the vehicle through error codes. 

When selecting a PCM, going with what is available in a wrong choice, the similarity of the devices on the outside will blindside you. Check the internal operations and match them to your vehicle. Installing the faulty car computer may run the car, but performance will be low. 

  • PCM should match the car model 

Any PCM will not work for your car model if it does not match the make or model. The right PCM will save you unnecessary return costs while offering the proper tribute to your car. The part minimizes other possible ECM repairs with harmony in the vehicle’s hardware and firmware. 

  • Match the firmware to the current version in the vehicle

When replacing the PCM, you do not plug and play. The firmware should match the car model and year of production. Different car versions also require different firmware. That’s how specific a PCM firmware is, so don’t make a mistake of using a junkyard PCM that does not match.

  • Identify critical components of the PCM

Whether purchasing or replacing the PCM, there are few features to consider. Match or purchase better versions for memory and processing capabilities. Service ID and the Ford ID should be similar to the new engine computer. Don’t forget the model make, year, and above all, engine size.

Ask whether to repair or replace the PCM

You can repair a PCM by flashing or reprogramming. However, the inefficiencies remain and are hard to take down. Many car experts advice to make a replacement as it is more cost-efficient. 

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When to replace the PCM:

  • The illumination of check engine light indicate different reasons—for instance, valves failing for the car’s pressure sensors. 
  • Starting problems- the fuel to air ratio might be off, causing engine failure. 
  • Stutters or engine stalls while not in motion (idling). Clogged filters or incorrect ratio in air-fuel mix can be the cause. 
  • Change in car shifting patterns or failure to shift at all indicates a problem with transmission sensors. Finding a mechanic is the solution. 
  • Improper gas mileage even after replacing the cylinder gas. It may result from shifting, or incorrect fuel mix ratios.  

When to repair the PCM

The scan tool or the on-board diagnostic for your car will indicate several trouble codes. They suggest that the vehicle is not functioning right. 

Repairing the PCM can further damage its functionality- no guarantee and does not improve the lifespan. Many mechanics and other car dealers prefer replacements for the lifetime warranty. Besides, you need a professional who are hard to find in order to get a proper repair.

Reprogramming your PCM

To skip the costs of a technician, opt for a replacement. You will need a scan tool from Ford Motor’s craft or company. Up to date Ford PCM reprogramming software. Go ahead and reprogram the Ford PCM following these simple steps. 

  • Assess to determine whether an upgrade for the software is available. Updates can quickly solve any challenges your PCM has, eliminating the need for a replacement. Each update is easy to recognize as it comes with the problem it solves. Therefore, install the upgrade and address your PCM needs. However, upgrades do not solve all issues of a PCM and do not upgrade all systems. 
  • Use a scan tool on your vehicle to determine the current PCM software version you are using. It should be the latest, and if not, it might be the reason for all your problems. As a result, your PCM requires either an upgrade or a reprogramming procedure. 
  • Download or get original software with all necessary updates from the manufacturer. Transfer the upgrade or reprogramming information on the scan tool. Plugin the scan tool to the diagnostic connector and allow the software to run through your car’s computer. 

Essential tips when reprogramming your PCM

Do not cut off or interrupt the connection between the powers to the reprogramming tool in use. Ensure a study flow of voltage using a battery as the process continues. Disconnect once the process is complete. 

Any interruptions or disconnections will disrupt the program. Completing the process might be impossible, and the damage is irreversible. Remember, it is not possible to reverse a reprogram and thus unlikely to access or use your PCM’s older version. 


There are many factors and elements to consider when selecting a PCM. Deciding on whether to replace or repair also poses a considerable challenge. However, with a matching model, firmware, processors, and memory, a PCM can precisely match your vehicle model. 

How do I know if a PCM is good? 

Ensure that the features of the PCM match those of your vehicle. These include the model, manufacture number and make, software, firmware, among others.  

Can I use a junkyard PCM?

No! Well, junkyard PCM may match but come with similar challenges as the current PCM. Even with adequate flashing or reprogramming, some of the problems remain, which doesn’t offer value against the costs. 

How much does a PCM cost?

The cost is dependent on the model, year and make of the vehicle, the current version of software running and the design or firmware present on the PCM. Different dealers give different offers. Find the right dealer offering the PCM at a budget range you can afford. 

How much does a PCM cost?

The cost is dependent on the model, year and make of the vehicle, the current version of software running and the design or firmware present on the PCM. Different dealers give different offers. Find the right dealer offering the PCM at a budget range you can afford. 

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