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ECU Repair Shop - ECUdoctors?


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Does anyone know anything about an ECU repair shop in Ft Lauderdale called ecudoctors.com?

After several dealer visits and replacement parts, Porsche thinks my idle surge problem may be the ECU, but I'm not willing to spend $3000 to try it (non-returnable). ECUdoctors says they can exchange mine for a rebuilt for $950. They also said they are getting some new ones in from Germany this week and will offer those for the same exchange price.

I would appreciate anyone's experience and thoughts about this shop or any others. Or about rebuilding/repairing ECUs in general

Thanks!

Dwight

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Does anyone know anything about an ECU repair shop in Ft Lauderdale called ecudoctors.com?

After several dealer visits and replacement parts, Porsche thinks my idle surge problem may be the ECU, but I'm not willing to spend $3000 to try it (non-returnable). ECUdoctors says they can exchange mine for a rebuilt for $950. They also said they are getting some new ones in from Germany this week and will offer those for the same exchange price.

I would appreciate anyone's experience and thoughts about this shop or any others. Or about rebuilding/repairing ECUs in general

Thanks!

Dwight

That's funny. I was talking to Jose (the doctor himself) in person yesterday at a local indie. (I'm in SoFla.)

Jose is reputable. He does indeed provide a brand new unused box. He is experienced, knowledgeable and used by a couple of the indies here - including the one I regard as the best.

He has done work for me, including providing a new box, and repairing an old one.

The drawback to Jose is he does not have access to PIWIS or PST2, nor does he have deep contacts into Porsche. Both he and the local indies explained what he does - I don't completely understand it, and I may not have this right, but it goes something like this:

He takes your old box, and sucks the software and its "configuration" out of it, and then applies it to the new box. He also applies your VIN. If all goes right, it is simple plug and play.

The drawback is if there is something wrong in your old box software, and/or you have some sort of special factory mapping, and the "transfer" does not go right, he can't really help you. He doesn't actually program the box with a PST2 or PIWIS.

This happened to me. My 986S is the 550 spyder version and has a mapping called something like spyder X50. When the transfer did not work correctly for reasons neither Jose nor the indie understood, the indie took over, got pass code info on my car direct from Porsche, and he and Jose together got it right.

So, what does all this mean?

If you have a straight 996 the chances are quite good that what you get back from Jose will be perfect. Note he also provides a warranty.

If you are local OR think there is the chance that you have special factory mapping, you can mitigate the limited risk by going to Jose through the shop I went through. You end up paying Jose, and the shop, because the shop adds the PIWIS and the contacts into Porsche to figure out anything weird.

Bottomline - based on my experience and the commentary from the local guys, if I had a straight 996, I'd use him. PM me if you want more of the gory detail.

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A new DME for your car has a US MSRP of $2104.92 - so I do not know where they get $3000. And, I am sure Sunset Imports (Porsche Parts at Dealer Cost) could get a better price than the $2100.

Have you checked with Bosch?

Thank you, Loren. Unless I heard wrong I thought the Svc Manager said $2700 for the ECU but they may have put their programming and install labor on top of that - don't know.

You might recall that you've helped me work this problem over the past two years. The idle speed oscillates up and down (about 500-1400 rpm) with the engine warm and AC switch off, about 25% of the time. With AC switch on, no surging but idle elevates to about 1400 rpm and seems to mostly stay there.

With your help and the dealer we've tried the TPS, ICV and MAS with no luck. This last time the dealer asked to have it for a couple weeks and they'd interact with Porsche on it to figure it out. They said they worked with two Porsche product engineers on it. They thought it was the TPS so they got the lastest redesigned one in from Germany and it didn't fix it. Then they indicated Porsche guessed it was the ECU but wasn't sure. I really think the tech, a 30+ year Porsche tech is honest and I watched him do some of the tests one time. He said something like when it goes into the idle oscillation mode the tester shows it is thinking the throttle is 10% open but it really isn't. He doesn't think it's the wiring to and from the TPS but has only visually inspected both connectors.

So, kind of frustrating, just changing parts but no fix. If I buy an ECU from Sunset, can they program it without the car so I can just plug it in and drive when I replace it? I assume I just take out the carpet mounting screws behind the right rear seat to replace it - any tricks to that?

Any other ideas I might try before I decide whether to spend $1000-2000 to try an ECU?

Thanks very much again for any further ideas or guidance you have.

Dwight

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Does anyone know anything about an ECU repair shop in Ft Lauderdale called ecudoctors.com?

After several dealer visits and replacement parts, Porsche thinks my idle surge problem may be the ECU, but I'm not willing to spend $3000 to try it (non-returnable). ECUdoctors says they can exchange mine for a rebuilt for $950. They also said they are getting some new ones in from Germany this week and will offer those for the same exchange price.

I would appreciate anyone's experience and thoughts about this shop or any others. Or about rebuilding/repairing ECUs in general

Thanks!

Dwight

That's funny. I was talking to Jose (the doctor himself) in person yesterday at a local indie. (I'm in SoFla.)

Jose is reputable. He does indeed provide a brand new unused box. He is experienced, knowledgeable and used by a couple of the indies here - including the one I regard as the best.

He has done work for me, including providing a new box, and repairing an old one.

The drawback to Jose is he does not have access to PIWIS or PST2, nor does he have deep contacts into Porsche. Both he and the local indies explained what he does - I don't completely understand it, and I may not have this right, but it goes something like this:

He takes your old box, and sucks the software and its "configuration" out of it, and then applies it to the new box. He also applies your VIN. If all goes right, it is simple plug and play.

The drawback is if there is something wrong in your old box software, and/or you have some sort of special factory mapping, and the "transfer" does not go right, he can't really help you. He doesn't actually program the box with a PST2 or PIWIS.

This happened to me. My 986S is the 550 spyder version and has a mapping called something like spyder X50. When the transfer did not work correctly for reasons neither Jose nor the indie understood, the indie took over, got pass code info on my car direct from Porsche, and he and Jose together got it right.

So, what does all this mean?

If you have a straight 996 the chances are quite good that what you get back from Jose will be perfect. Note he also provides a warranty.

If you are local OR think there is the chance that you have special factory mapping, you can mitigate the limited risk by going to Jose through the shop I went through. You end up paying Jose, and the shop, because the shop adds the PIWIS and the contacts into Porsche to figure out anything weird.

Bottomline - based on my experience and the commentary from the local guys, if I had a straight 996, I'd use him. PM me if you want more of the gory detail.

Thanks very much for the advice. I'm still struggling to decide whether to take the plunge for an ECU without knowing for sure if it will fix the problem. Very helpful to have this reference about Jose.

thanks

Dwight

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The odd time in the repair of these vehicles we just have to guess and try a new known good part. Unfortunately the ECU's are very expensive but if it doesn't cure the fault I wouldn't be expecting the customer to pay for the part. I have found it very rare that the ECU's actually fail, software update or reflash yes, but a fault in the unit itself no. The wiring harness or ground faults are much more common. Please keep us updated on this problem.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks again everyone.

Well, tried reprogramming the ECU today. After driving it a little while, the idle oscillation came back again, intermittently. Was worth a try though - only $150. I had also unplugged and replugged in the ECU connector before that was done - everything looked clean.

So I'm back wondering if it's worth a $1000-2000 gamble to replace the ECU. There is not much in that specific circuit that hasn't been replaced but maybe we are looking at the wrong place. Would an intermittent temp sensor cause something like that? But if so, would it throw a fault code if it did - I don't get fault codes.

thanks

Dwight

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  • 2 weeks later...
Thanks again everyone.

Well, tried reprogramming the ECU today. After driving it a little while, the idle oscillation came back again, intermittently. Was worth a try though - only $150. I had also unplugged and replugged in the ECU connector before that was done - everything looked clean.

So I'm back wondering if it's worth a $1000-2000 gamble to replace the ECU. There is not much in that specific circuit that hasn't been replaced but maybe we are looking at the wrong place. Would an intermittent temp sensor cause something like that? But if so, would it throw a fault code if it did - I don't get fault codes.

thanks

Dwight

Specialized ECU Repair (ECU Doctors) helped me out. Got me a rebuilt ECU for testing purposes. Unfortunately it didn't fix the problem. However, they are great and very helpful. I'd highly recommend them for a repair/rebuilt ECU service.

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Thanks again everyone.

Well, tried reprogramming the ECU today. After driving it a little while, the idle oscillation came back again, intermittently. Was worth a try though - only $150. I had also unplugged and replugged in the ECU connector before that was done - everything looked clean.

So I'm back wondering if it's worth a $1000-2000 gamble to replace the ECU. There is not much in that specific circuit that hasn't been replaced but maybe we are looking at the wrong place. Would an intermittent temp sensor cause something like that? But if so, would it throw a fault code if it did - I don't get fault codes.

thanks

Dwight

Specialized ECU Repair (ECU Doctors) helped me out. Got me a rebuilt ECU for testing purposes. Unfortunately it didn't fix the problem. However, they are great and very helpful. I'd highly recommend them for a repair/rebuilt ECU service.

So what are you going to do next? Wiring harness replacement?

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