7 must-know tips to extend ECU-based cars' life expectancy

Updated Mar 01, 2019 | Same topic: Handy Maintenance Tips

Modern cars need more attention than ever! Read the article to know useful tips to keep your car running for a long time.

Most cars have ECUs installed in one way or another. Nothing can stop the future and as ECUs take over many aspects of a car's function, it now important to know how to extend the service life of ECU-based cars.

Not many drivers know the impact of the ECU on automotive features. But, once something goes awry then it can be felt how relevant the ECU is! Otherwise known as best selling cars that have scrappy equipment at most. Not, so much for premium car owners that get a chockful of these ECU-based features for their expensive high-performance autos. To cite some examples; like cars over 1 million pesos and nearing the 5-million-peso mark or more will fall into this category.

Look at how much is spent; and it will be obvious that more upkeep is needed, to fully appreciate the full-features it affords anyone. It’s a fact that ECU-based cars are efficient and precise due to the inner working that is closely controlled. For all the good; there will be trade-offs that can be avoided.

I. Basic perceptions related to the use of car ECUs

There are some practical steps to take, and these have to be carried out to the letter. Just keep in mind; these basic precepts that are related to the use of car ECUs. As a result; many of what normal troubleshooting could resolve can be a shot in the dark. So, here it goes.

  • Car ECUs are sensitive computer-based devices that need more attention.
  • Unlike most car component; when damaged it can be more serious than it seems.
  • When a car ECU is on the fritz; it can be the cause of misfires and bad-fuel economy.
  • Sometimes only repairs done by qualified technicians are required, not the usual car mechanic without the tools needed.
  • Small problems that will happen may spider-web and influence every other system.

>>> Also check out: Most common car ECU problems & How to fix them

II. Tips to extend the service life of ECU-based cars

1. Maintenance should be regular

Keep to the maintenance schedule and checkups to keep the car in running condition. Most cars are made to function and drive for a long time, but ECU-based cars have changed the ballgame. Expensive premium cars will need all the maintenance and car part replacements to keep it in running condition. Since most ECU-cars will need all the regular maintenance it can get.

Due to the sensitivity of it’s ECS and sensors that may be affected by excessive heat. Contact points and other connecting wiring should be checked, since contact receptacles may wither in excessive heat. Also, keeping the required components checked and maintained is an important task.

2. No modding or tampering by adding aftermarket options

No matter what happens; it is better to keep the car’s equipment stock but mod it only with consultation. One of the worst things to do to most ECU-based cars is to mod it; without professional help. By, the way most production cars are at their best at the stock condition and upgrading some parts are an option. Although, that depends on what part will be modded and that’s one tricky thing to do. Since the ECU is linked to a program that regulates and controls all car functions, it stands to reason that any after-market add-on should be consulted before installation.

Do not modding your car

Do not modify your car on your own

3. Replace all parts like brake pads and wheel bearing, also other components when needed

When sounds are heard and abnormal behavior while driving is noticed. Better have it checked, to see if a part replacement is needed. Usually, it is advisable to replace parts of the wheel assembly and suspension; on both sides because it avoids problems later on. When brake pads are nearly bare; it will bite into the rotor and cause scratched that needs polishing. The same goes for drive belts, ball bearing and other parts on the engine too!

4. Don’t drive like a maniac, treat your car nicely

Road cars are efficient machines and are the best examples of automotive advancement. But, they are meant to be driven the right way! Not to slow or not too fast; when on the road! Driving a race car driver can be done, but it can wear out the cars and shorten its service life. Knowing how to extend the service life of ECU-based cars is important and driving properly is one of these ways.

Eco driving tips

Eco-Driving Tips

5. Keep the fuel tank at least almost half full

Fuel is one of the most important needs of a car. Getting the right one is the best way to ensure proper combustion and fuel burn. So, keeping the tank nearly half-full and avoiding dirt fuel is the best way to save the fuel filter and lines. Letting the gas lower than one-fourth will stir up sediments that can cause clogs. Also, using the recommended fuel is better than anything else.

Less than a half full tank

Remember to keep the gas tank fuel 

>>> See more useful tips on fuel-saving: 

6. Don’t lower or cut the coil springs for a low profile

Those who want a lower profile may whittle down the clearance a bit; and lower the suspension. This is not advised at all and is not the smartest option. Most production suspension will suffer from a lower than required suspension. It will strain the shocks and other under-chassis parts and be damaged due to scratching from more road contact. Its best to keep the clearance height as is; and the smartest option. Full suspension mods will cost more with specialized shocks and parts needed.

7. Maintain all fluid levels at a normal and never let anything reach low

Throughout the operational life of a car, always fill-up the brakes and automatic transmission receptacle, and keep the radiator full of water. For example, filling the radiator with water or coolant will keep the ECU and sensors from roasting. This happens when the engines overheat without enough water.

Maintain fluid level

Maintain the fluid by filling the radiator with water

Looking over all the things needed to extend the service life of ECU based cars is a long process. But, most of all the need to keep everything in running condition with optimized ECU-control is a major concern. Getting to keep excessive heat way, keep the cars condition stock for normal ECU-control, and keeping component running well to avoid damage to the ECU. All these tips in the primer are all about extending the service life and more of ECU-cars.

>>> Check out Philkotse.com regularly for more useful tips & advice on car maintenance.

Norjan Ismail Abbas

Norjan Ismail Abbas


Norjan enjoys writing about various topics, and car is among them. Don't ever ask him which his most favorite car is since he has none. He believes each car is beautiful in its own way.

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