I performed the 3G → 4G TCU upgrade today on our '17 MKZ using module JL3T-14G087-CK from a salvaged from a '19 Ford Expedition. Followed the TSB procedure, added the proper 4G LTE antenna and it worked like a champ. 15 minutes in and out!
Now I’d like to do the same for both of our C-MAX Energi cars. One is a '16 and one is a '17. I’d like to procure the TCM from a salvaged car and not pay the price for the official Ford TCU upgrade kit.
Has anyone successfully done an upgrade on an ENERGI C-Max and if so, what TCU did you use?
Thanks in advance for any input here.
Here’s a link to an AWESOME tutorial that fully outlines the process.
Yes. You’ll need an H series TCU for those. Anything later like the J will not work. The H ones seem to be harder to find and usually from the Escape. But it’s just as easy as the J TCU you just did.
One caveat if using a TCU pulled from an ICE only vehicle, it will need to be updated to the latest available calibration to enable the Go Times/Departure Times and Value Charge features. All the other functions will work though if it is not updated. In my personal experience with an OBDLink EX, the calibration updates take approximately 2h30m to complete. Make sure you have a batttery charger handy for that. I wouldn’t rely on the EVSE to keep the vehicle powered during this process.
Here’s some additional helpful resources:
Just as a clarification, I own a C-Max Energi myself and have done this upgrade (as well as a few other members here). So feel free to ask any questions about the process and I’ll try to answer them.
The only thing I’ll add is that you specifically want to look out for 2017 Escape Titanium vehicles (I don’t think the lower trim levels had a TCU). I can’t say for 100% certain that no other Ford vehicles have the H model, but I spent a long time searching and that is the one specific vehicle I could find that had that model–which sort of makes sense given how difficult it can be to find them salvaged. That said, they are out there. You may just have to be patient–especially since you need two of them.
I tried a K TCU first (which I had flashed to the J firmware, so for all intents and purposes it was a J) in my 2017 C-Max Titanium and it only minimally worked. I got accurate battery level, fuel level and oil life readouts, and I could remotely unlock and lock the car. But remote start didn’t work, and certainly none of the go-time or value charge stuff worked. Plenty of others have also tried J TCUs (or K flashed to J) and had the same results, so as @Vchat20 said, you definitely need the H for full functionality.
That said, even with the official TCU and firmware, there are still aspects of this that don’t work quite right. In particular, the trip log still doesn’t populate with anything for me (and even doesn’t for some of the people who got the official upgrade). Setting up value charging locations can also sometimes be wonky. This has been the case now for over a year, so I’m not really sure if Ford is still working on this or not. To some degree, we’re lucky they offered a migration path at all. A lot of other vehicles that had 3G telematics were just left high and dry. So I try not to complain about the stuff that’s still half-baked. I really do miss MyFordMobile though. Say what you will about the dated interface (and the dumb gamification of range stats, etc,) but the app was extremely reliable for me and everything worked. FordPass still feels a bit like it was shoehorned into these cars, but hey, I am still glad to have it!
Yep. I’m missing MFM more day by day. It just worked. And for me the bonus of having an app for my Android Wear (now WearOS) watch was really nice.
Ford is at least nice enough to offer the service completely free. If they went with a subscription fee like most other manufacturers, I would have either skipped the upgrade or would be really hounding them to fix the remaining bugs.