Wednesday, July 30, 2014

DIY: Cleaning my oily ECU

 I had this issue back when I was still using my old ECU on my Accord. You can see this oil-like fluid all over one of the ECU ports. It was soaked, almost dripping. I kept on inspecting the surroundings of the computer box if there's a leak or something but everything is sealed and dry. Even the socket wires leading to that ECU port was dry. I clean it, and it builds up again after about a month. Weird.

  So anyway, I just wanted to share how the gurus from Accord Tuner PH taught me how to clean my ECU ports so I can remove the yucky oil. Plus a quick DIY basics on how to remove your ECU as well. So here we go...


  MATERIALS:  - wrenches                       
                        - a small brush (toothbrush works fine)
                        - dish washing liquid mixed in water (I used Joy)
                        - tissues and rags
                        - blow dryer
                        - a snack
                                                               REMOVING MY ECU...


Step 1. Locate your ECU. You're probably thinking, "duh". But the location differs depending on what car. On a Honda Accord, it's behind/under the center console. I found out the location is the same for Toyota Corollas, Nissan Sentras and Mitsubishi Lancers. But for Civics, they said it's in the engine bay.

Step 2. Grab your wrenches and start unscrewing. Just 2 screws on my ECU so it's easy peasy. I got my set of Eagle brand wrenches from Ace Hardware for a cheap price by the way. Not the best quality but it gets the job done.

 Step 3. Remove the sockets and your ECU is free. Check out how soaked with oil one my sockets were... euck. 


                                                             CLEANING MY ECU...

STEP 1. Remove the ECU cover using your good old Philips screw driver. This allows the ECU to dry easily and thoroughly when you're done, plus you get to check the inside if everything's A-OK. In my case, everything on the inside is bone dry. Not a hint of that oil. I was so relieved but again, weird. 


Step 2. Wipe out as much dirt, or oil in my case, from the ECU ports using tissues or rags. I chose to use tissues because it allows me to do this with a toothpick... 
Soaked up all that oil more effectively.

STEP 3. Soak the brush in the water and dish washing liquid solution and start brushing. Be careful not to soak the heck out of your ECU though. Make sure you're only working the ports. Don't get the inside part wet! 

STEP 4. When you get all that filth out, wipe it off with a clean dry rag and fire up the blow dryer. This is probably the most important part of the process. MAKE SURE THE ECU IS DRY. You might fry that computer box if you install it back wet.

I used the blow drier on and off for an hour, then air dried it for another hour in front of a fan. Better safe than sorry.

 STEP 5. You're done! Install the ECU back in your car and fire it up. It's time to get that snack now. :)

I dealt with this oily ECU for a long time until I finally found a replacement. It took ages but it's so worth it. But I guess I'll never know what that oily substance was and how it kept on getting there... (cue the Twilight Zone music...) 


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