04 Wrangler spare key/PCM mess - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 12:30 PM Thread Starter
b1buddy1949
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04 Wrangler spare key/PCM mess

New member here and also new Jeep owner. Bought a 2004 Wranlger TJ a little over 2 weeks ago. 77k miles and good condition overall. Got one ignition key and 3 door keys with it. Ignition key is chipped and door keys are not and they will not interchange due to different cuts.
So, naturally, I wanted a spare ignition key. Used car dealer said okay. go to dealer and get one and he would pay.

So, went to the dealer for a 'quick' visit and get a key. Right about 4 hours later I leave and do not have a spare key.

Dealer entered VIN of the Jeep into their system and pulled a key and cut it. Said that my Jeep doesn't need a chipped key per the VIN in their system. It will start engine but it dies instantly and have the "bad/wrong key" symbol come on. So, he cut another one. Same thing.

Then, they didn't have any of the chipped keys but I had bought two online and had planned to code them per the procedure once I had two working keys. So, I gave them those two keys. Something like 3 hours after that, they gave me this story:

"We locked ourselves out trying to program the keys and must wait an hour before we can try again. But, after that, we cannot program these keys and we do not know why. Your 04 Wrangler has a Liberty computer in it. We tried to program it manually to put the correct VIN in this computer, but it will not let us do it. The only thing we know to do is get a new computer that is clean and start over."

So, as you might imagine, this old man was not happy.

I do not understand why with a computer replacement it could require a key code when the original didn't have one. And, if someone would change the computer then why in the world would they also change the ignition switch so it would read a code.

I have read a good many posts here about how to program keys, gluing a good key inside the steering column, etc. Right this minute, I am irritated enough that I am considering a replacement computer but get one that DOES NOT require a coded key and use the ones that I have already. Prices on eBay seem to be only a little more than the dealer folks want for a danged key - assuming they might can ever actually make one.

Any thoughts from you guys? Well, I mean thoughts about best path forward so that I might actually end up with more than one good ignition key?

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post #2 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 12:35 PM
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b1buddy1949 View Post
New member here and also new Jeep owner. Bought a 2004 Wranlger TJ a little over 2 weeks ago. 77k miles and good condition overall. Got one ignition key and 3 door keys with it. Ignition key is chipped and door keys are not and they will not interchange due to different cuts.
So, naturally, I wanted a spare ignition key. Used car dealer said okay. go to dealer and get one and he would pay.

So, went to the dealer for a 'quick' visit and get a key. Right about 4 hours later I leave and do not have a spare key.

Dealer entered VIN of the Jeep into their system and pulled a key and cut it. Said that my Jeep doesn't need a chipped key per the VIN in their system. It will start engine but it dies instantly and have the "bad/wrong key" symbol come on. So, he cut another one. Same thing.

Then, they didn't have any of the chipped keys but I had bought two online and had planned to code them per the procedure once I had two working keys. So, I gave them those two keys. Something like 3 hours after that, they gave me this story:

"We locked ourselves out trying to program the keys and must wait an hour before we can try again. But, after that, we cannot program these keys and we do not know why. Your 04 Wrangler has a Liberty computer in it. We tried to program it manually to put the correct VIN in this computer, but it will not let us do it. The only thing we know to do is get a new computer that is clean and start over."

So, as you might imagine, this old man was not happy.

I do not understand why with a computer replacement it could require a key code when the original didn't have one. And, if someone would change the computer then why in the world would they also change the ignition switch so it would read a code.

I have read a good many posts here about how to program keys, gluing a good key inside the steering column, etc. Right this minute, I am irritated enough that I am considering a replacement computer but get one that DOES NOT require a coded key and use the ones that I have already. Prices on eBay seem to be only a little more than the dealer folks want for a danged key - assuming they might can ever actually make one.

Any thoughts from you guys? Well, I mean thoughts about best path forward so that I might actually end up with more than one good ignition key?
I'm trying to understand how their failure to do the job or recognize any of the issues that prevented them from doing their job is your responsibility.

You didn't screw it up, it is not your job to fix it.

They should have verified the PCM was correct and that is on them, not you.

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post #3 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 02:34 PM
Jeepsr4me
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Some one also would have to put the sentry key system in with the computer.. As there is another component that acts between the computer and the ignition.
Also I dont think you have a liberty computer...The dealer should have the correct uplink system that goes in and can delete the key sentry out.. At least the one near me can.
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post #4 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 06:29 PM
2jhanna
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I agree, sounds like the dealer dudnt know what they are doing.

If you only have one chipped key that works, I would say your best option is to have this key "cloned". A cloned key looks just like your other key to the computer. You still won't be able to program addition keys yourself.

Or find another dealer.

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denton county, tx
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post #5 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
b1buddy1949
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I read about cloned keys on the forum, and that would be fine with me. One thread said that WalMart could do it, but I have never tried them on keys before. I can try that first and see what happens.

As to the "not a Liberty PCM", why do you say that? That is what the dealer said, and they said they based that on the VIN number that is in the computer. If the dealer cannot reprogram a PCM, that is disgusting to me!!! Besides the fact that the only way to get a second key is through the dealer ticks me off to start with. I know they are trying to satisfy insurance companies with all the theft deterrent items, but requiring a second key be programmed at the dealer is going a bit too far for me. If I can get a cloned key to work, I can easily install a switch (maybe 2?) that will stop anyone from getting it rolling down the road on its own.

The comment about changing out the "switch or whatever it is" that reads the transponder when they changed out the PCM, well, I don't understand why anyone would do that either. CarFax didn't show any theft or anything to document the change. Unless they were worried about it being stolen, I see no logical reason for that much work.

One question - whether I would do it or not, I would like to understand - If a computer is installed that is supposedly "OEM" then it that would not require a key with a transponder in it. At least the dealer said that my VIN indicated there was no transponder key, so the factory computer didn't expect to see that signal. So, would any key that is cut correctly run it without activating the shutdown sensor, even though the circuit is still installed that read the transponder? I would think that if the computer didn't expect that signal, then whether it saw the signal or not wouldn't matter with that computer. right? or wrong?
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post #6 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 07:50 PM
2jhanna
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Your profile states 4.0l engine. This was never an option with a liberty, to say the least, so a liberty's computer would just scratch its head.

Several places offer key cloning, call around.

Ps, you probably don't have 3.01 gearing, probably 3.07 or 3.73.

jhanna
denton county, tx
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post #7 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 08:17 PM Thread Starter
b1buddy1949
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The 3.01 was just my stupidity and getting in a hurry. It is the 3.07 according to the VIN info. I will go fix that.
As I mentioned, I am new to the Jeep world and learning. Actually, am learning a few things a little faster than I would prefer, but ----. Still neat stuff!

Got to head to town tomorrow anyway (we live in the country), so will see if I can find a place and give it a try. Thank you!
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post #8 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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Okay. Updated my Jeep Info. with the 3.07 and also put in the front and rear axle info. Thanks for catching it for me.
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post #9 of 29 Old 09-01-2015, 09:34 PM
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b1buddy1949 View Post
I read about cloned keys on the forum, and that would be fine with me. One thread said that WalMart could do it, but I have never tried them on keys before. I can try that first and see what happens.

As to the "not a Liberty PCM", why do you say that? That is what the dealer said, and they said they based that on the VIN number that is in the computer. If the dealer cannot reprogram a PCM, that is disgusting to me!!! Besides the fact that the only way to get a second key is through the dealer ticks me off to start with. I know they are trying to satisfy insurance companies with all the theft deterrent items, but requiring a second key be programmed at the dealer is going a bit too far for me. If I can get a cloned key to work, I can easily install a switch (maybe 2?) that will stop anyone from getting it rolling down the road on its own.

The comment about changing out the "switch or whatever it is" that reads the transponder when they changed out the PCM, well, I don't understand why anyone would do that either. CarFax didn't show any theft or anything to document the change. Unless they were worried about it being stolen, I see no logical reason for that much work.

One question - whether I would do it or not, I would like to understand - If a computer is installed that is supposedly "OEM" then it that would not require a key with a transponder in it. At least the dealer said that my VIN indicated there was no transponder key, so the factory computer didn't expect to see that signal. So, would any key that is cut correctly run it without activating the shutdown sensor, even though the circuit is still installed that read the transponder? I would think that if the computer didn't expect that signal, then whether it saw the signal or not wouldn't matter with that computer. right? or wrong?
From 98-06 all TJ PCM's are SKIM capable with the theft deterrent software programmed into them. To activate it, a SKIM module is installed into the steering column and plugged in. As soon as it is plugged in, it activates the SKIM deterrent and looks for a signal from the transponder key to tell it that it is okay to stay running. If it does not receive the signal after it starts, it kills the engine in roughly 3 seconds. If enough starts are attempted within a period of time, it will lock down the ignition for a bit. If that continues, the PCM locks down completely and has to go to the dealer and get rebooted.

Be forewarned if you do try a new PCM that hasn't had the SKIM activated, if you plug it into the engine and body harness and then power it up without unplugging the SKIM module in the steering column, you will activate the SKIM and be right back where you are now.

If you get the part number off of your PCM and post it up, someone on here will tell you what it goes to so you have something other than the dealer's word which is very suspect at this point.

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post #10 of 29 Old 09-02-2015, 07:41 AM Thread Starter
b1buddy1949
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All Right! I will get it and post it. Hopefully today, but not promising. Pasture mowing starts today so ---.
Man! I sure appreciate all your help. Plus, as a 'new' Jeep owner, I like my Jeep. Probably should have sold off the two vettes years ago and bought one sooner!!
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post #11 of 29 Old 09-02-2015, 02:41 PM Thread Starter
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Well, so much for the Wally World key thing. got one made and it is not cheap there either, but cheaper than a dealer. Cost was $64 including tax. BUT, it will start the engine and the wrong key error comes on. Tried it three times and use the "good" key inbetween each time, just in case.
Am attaching a picture of the PCM label for info to see if anyone might can tell me anything new.
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post #12 of 29 Old 09-02-2015, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
b1buddy1949
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To: MRBlaine
You said -
"From 98-06 all TJ PCM's are SKIM capable with the theft deterrent software programmed into them. To activate it, a SKIM module is installed into the steering column and plugged in. As soon as it is plugged in, it activates the SKIM deterrent and looks for a signal from the transponder key to tell it that it is okay to stay running. If it does not receive the signal after it starts, it kills the engine in roughly 3 seconds. "

So, a question for you - If I pull the SKIM module out, am I back to a 'normal' key system or will the computer still remember that it needs that signal?
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post #13 of 29 Old 09-02-2015, 03:05 PM
Jeepsr4me
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Since the ECM has activated the SKIM inside itself, if you remove the module, the computer will not see a signal and shut down.

You must get someone to deactivate the SKIM inside the computer.
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post #14 of 29 Old 09-02-2015, 03:16 PM
2jhanna
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I was just at Lowes, one of my many trips per week, anyway, as I walked by the key making station I saw the banner for "transponder keys" and the guy wasn't busy so I stopped and asked.

$75. They first take your original key, and put it in a code reader machine, then take their programmable blank into the machine to have it programmed. Then they cut the key in the normal way.

I first asked about how a cloned key was made and he scratched his head, I asked a couple other questions and got the same. So I let him tell me. I'm not sure he understood all the tech aspects, just knows the procedure to use the equipment. Which is fine.

jhanna
denton county, tx
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post #15 of 29 Old 09-02-2015, 03:21 PM
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b1buddy1949 View Post
Well, so much for the Wally World key thing. got one made and it is not cheap there either, but cheaper than a dealer. Cost was $64 including tax. BUT, it will start the engine and the wrong key error comes on. Tried it three times and use the "good" key inbetween each time, just in case.
Am attaching a picture of the PCM label for info to see if anyone might can tell me anything new.
Best I can find is that is a PCM for a 2004 Jeep Wrangler with the 4 speed automatic transmission and the 4.0 inline 6 engine.

Your dealer is full of poo and an easy way to shove that back in their face is walk into the parts department and ask them for the part number for a 2004 PCM for a Jeep just like yours. When you get the part number, take a sharpie and write it on a big stick so you leave the proper impression when you show it to him repeatedly.

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Knowledge does not equal understanding.
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