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Why You Should Reset Your Car’s Computer

Cars come in different designs and functionalities. Their uses range from driving through sandy and rough roads to a smooth ride in the city center. Individuals driving these cars also differ in driving styles, ages, and driving skills. Since the terrain, altitude and temperatures determine the design and functionalities of the ECU.

In Example, If you have been driving your grand Cherokee for several years or months, the ECU took time to adapt to you as an individual and your driving style. Your vehicle is not entirely under the control of the computer, you also play a huge role in its adaptation.

If not too happy with the vehicle outcomes, or taking the vehicle off-road to different terrain, you may want to consider resetting your engine control module. The process is simple and does not cause any damage to your car. Therefore, there is no need to fret over insurance covers when resetting the control modules.

How does the engine control module work?

The engine control module (ECM) is responsible for the engine functionalities when the car runs. The aim of placing an engine computer in the vehicle is to learn and adapt the engine to your driving style. If the ECM is not properly functioning, then you get a check your engine light on the dashboard as a warning.

The ECM tracks and keeps data on your engine sensors. The data generated is what mechanics derive using the onboard diagnostic kits whenever the vehicle engine breaks down. The trouble codes within the data indicate which section of the engine is in need of repairs. ECM’s RAM keeps all these details saved.

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What does reset ECM refers to?

Whenever you reset your ECM, then you remove the long term memory of the car’s computer memory. The process deletes error codes useful when conducting mechanical tests on your vehicle. The data becomes the default, and neutral and idle speed, spark, and fuel logs are no longer available.

Benefits resetting your cars ECU ?

There are several ways that you can use to reset your ECU successfully. Let us discuss some of them step by step for an easier process or guide.

The first method involves:

  1. Ensuring that the car engine temperature is normal as while driving or after driving. You could achieve this by driving for around 15 minutes if your vehicle was in parking.
  2. If the temperature is normal, now you can remove the ground lead from your car’s battery. To do so:

a. Open your car’s bonnet

b. Reach out for the ground lead

c. Yank it carefully and cautiously to prevent it from landing on your vehicles metal surface

  1. Wait for around five minutes before proceeding to the next step
  2. Since the computer capacitors are fully functional, it is advisable to discharge them. Press the brakes and discharge them using brake lights. The processes eliminate any saved data.
  3. Finally, you have reset your ECM.
  4. You can now replace the ground lead onto the car’s battery. Secure your vehicle’s bonnet.
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The other procedure you might find useful in resetting your ECM follows the following criteria.

For individuals who find it difficult to open the bonnet and to follow the first procedure, you may pull out the car’s battery. To do this will require removing the ECM fuse from near the fuse box that goes to the battery and the radio powering them and enabling their performances. The fuse box is on the footlight controls on your right side.

The steps to follow for the reset include:

  1. Pulling your car keys from the ignition.
  2. Removing the fuse from the car will disconnect the battery from the car.
  3. Wait for approximately fifteen seconds before reattaching it.
  4. The ECM will be reset once you complete the procedure.

Once you complete the reset procedures, it is time to let the reset computer to learn. The relearn procedures involve driving your vehicle in the right terrain, speed, and driving style. Repeat the process for approximately 30 minutes before the ECU adapts to your driving style. It will make the vehicle much more efficient, flexible, and economical in its fuel usage.

How do you know your car’s powertrain control modules require a reset?

Resetting your car’s ECM is not a decision you make overnight. The first step involves identifying whether the ECM functions are steady or damaged in any way. Some of the symptoms that you might witness in the process include:

Check engine light shining bright on your dashboard indicates that the engine control module has a problem. The problem can result in poor sensors or shoets in the engine circuits. A diagnosis is essential to identify the main challenge.

Stalling and engine misfires indicate that there is a problem with the ECM. The erratic patterns may not be regular, and severity may differ from one to another. Also, the vehicle may decelerate while in motion indicating an underlying problem. Furthermore, the engine power may reduce showing engine performance problems, which shows the car has engine problems.

To drive a car, you need it to start. If the vehicle fails to start after turning the ignition key, the ECM is not working correctly. Without essential inputs from the ECM, the car cannot start and thus might require jump-starting to get it going. However, before settling on this as the diagnosis, ensure the mechanics delve deeper into the vehicle challenges for the right diagnostics.

If the car is consuming much more fuel than before, then the ECM is not efficient. It is responsible for the combustion process, which aims to ensure efficiency in fuel consumption. By correcting the failing function, you save much more in gas expenses.


Car owners should continuously conduct car maintenance for durability and proper functionality. An ECM can show when there are faults, and you can take the step to remedy the situation. Once maintenance and correction procedures are complete, you can now proceed and reset the ECM. Follow the simple steps provided by Flagship One above to reset your engine control module.


The world's top supplier of programmed OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) Powertrain Control Modules (PCM), Engine Control Modules (ECM), Injection Control Modules (IDM), Body Control Modules (BCM), Transmission Control Modules (TCM), Engine Control Units and all other car control units. With over a decade in the business, we are the most reliable source when it comes to programming services for replacement engine control modules.

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