P0606: PCM / ECM Processor Fault

The powertrain and engine control module plays a critical role in regulating the operation of late model vehicles. Car and truck owners should service and update or replace a faulty PCM/ECM to support safe engine operation. Learn more about possible causes of an OBD-II scanner error code P0606 problem and options available for control module repair or replacement.

How Do I Read the OBD-II Code P0606?

If the check engine light turns on in your car or truck, it is a good idea to do diagnostic testing. AutoZone store locations and most dealers and mechanics have OBD-II scanners available on site. Interpreting trouble codes set by a vehicle computer calls for knowing the meaning of a letter and numbers.

The letter at the start of a trouble code indicates the affected vehicle system. The letter ‘P’ stands for generic powertrain. The following numbers provide more specific details about the nature of the problem. The most simple answer to the question, “what does the code P0606 mean?” is that it indicates that a processor fault has occurred in the PCM/ECM.

How Do I Fix P0606?

Code P0606 tends to be set when a PCM/ECM has failed. Depending on component condition and the make and model of a vehicle, it may be possible to resolve an internal integrity fault in the PCM/ECM by upgrading or re-flashing the control module. Otherwise, replacing and reprogramming the control module will be necessary.

AutoZone recommends having the dealer or an authorized repair service complete repair jobs involving vehicle control modules. If updating the software or resetting the PCM/ECM does not resolve the fault and clear the error code, it will probably be necessary to replace this component.

What Challenges Do PCM/ECM Repairs Pose?

In order to set up, upgrade or reset a PCM/ECM, it is necessary to gain manufacturer-level access to the internal computer and electronic systems that make it possible for a late-model vehicle to run. Repairing control modules also calls for the technology and skills necessary to calibrate an updated or replacement PCM/ECM to critical systems in a car or truck.

In addition to fine-tuning or updating the settings of a control module, it may also be necessary to set or sync anti-theft system settings or program in the vehicle identification number for a car or truck to resume normal operation. If you do not have prior experience working on these components, it can be a good idea to take your vehicle in for servicing by the dealer or a licensed mechanic. PCM/ECM repairs and replacements to late-model vehicles may be covered under a bumper-to-bumper, emissions or powertrain warranty.

How Should I Make Sure the Problem Is Solved?

If you take your car or truck in to the dealer or an authorized mechanic for service, your vehicle should have a working PCM/ECM installed. Otherwise, you may want to pursue another round of OBD-II diagnostic testing at AutoZone. Our Fix Finder service helps to connect trouble codes to the most practical solutions and fixes. Although you may be able to find low prices on replacement control modules or related components, programming this system may call for technology and skills mastered only by service professionals who are authorized by the vehicle manufacturer.

Keep in mind that other engine or powertrain problems may emerge if an upgraded or replacement PCM/ECM is not properly set up for a particular vehicle make, year model and engine type. Further diagnostic testing can be useful to make sure that trouble code P0606 does not reappear. Any new codes that appear could call for further calibration or additional repairs.

Advice, how-to guides, and car care information featured on AutoZone.com and AutoZone Advice & How-To’s are presented as helpful resources for general maintenance and automotive repairs from a general perspective only and should be used at your own risk. Information is accurate and true to the best of AutoZone’s knowledge, however, there may be omissions, errors or mistakes.

Be sure to consult your owner’s manual, a repair guide, an AutoZoner at a store near you, or a licensed, professional mechanic for vehicle-specific repair information. Refer to the service manual for specific diagnostic, repair and tool information for your particular vehicle. Always chock your wheels prior to lifting a vehicle. Always disconnect the negative battery cable before servicing an electrical application on the vehicle to protect its electrical circuits in the event that a wire is accidentally pierced or grounded. Use caution when working with automotive batteries. Sulfuric acid is caustic and can burn clothing and skin or cause blindness. Always wear gloves and safety glasses and other personal protection equipment, and work in a well-ventilated area. Should electrolyte get on your body or clothing, neutralize it immediately with a solution of baking soda and water. Do not wear ties or loose clothing when working on your vehicle.

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