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Three weeks ago I had to replace my battery that was shot, my alternator and a chamshaft sensor.
Today I went to start my car and the battery was dead. Tried to jump it and it didn't work.
Towed it to the mechanic that fixed it before and they got it running and got the battery back up BUT they found a parasitic power drain on the battery of 250mAmp when they said that the normal is 50mAmp tops;

They started checking it and said that the alternator is good, battery once was back up and charged up was good and the starter was getting the amps to get started.

Come to find out that the car computer (sorry not a car guy but that's what he said) needed a firmware update from Nissan and it had been sending a signal to all components to request amps from the battery when the car was parked.
They refreshed the computer and rebuilt the software and now it's no longer pulling it.

$325;

a) Is it truly unrelated to the other repair they did? It seems to be but I don't know
b) Can the computer really act out like that and do this type of stuff?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Three weeks ago I had to replace my battery that was shot, my alternator and a chamshaft sensor.
Today I went to start my car and the battery was dead. Tried to jump it and it didn't work.
Towed it to the mechanic that fixed it before and they got it running and got the battery back up BUT they found a parasitic power drain on the battery of 250mAmp when they said that the normal is 50mAmp tops;

They started checking it and said that the alternator is good, battery once was back up and charged up was good and the starter was getting the amps to get started.

Come to find out that the car computer (sorry not a car guy but that's what he said) needed a firmware update from Nissan and it had been sending a signal to all components to request amps from the battery when the car was parked.
They refreshed the computer and rebuilt the software and now it's no longer pulling it.

$325;

a) Is it truly unrelated to the other repair they did? It seems to be but I don't know
b) Can the computer really act out like that and do this type of stuff?
It?s the PCM, they refreshed it and re-programmed it.
 

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Mine is doing something very similar to this. Replaced the battery, and now the battery seems to be drained overnight when it sits. Did you have to take it back to Nissan to has this done?
 

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Come to find out that the car computer (sorry not a car guy but that's what he said) needed a firmware update from Nissan and it had been sending a signal to all components to request amps from the battery when the car was parked.
They refreshed the computer and rebuilt the software and now it's no longer pulling it.

$325;
I've never heard of this, which isn't to say it cannot be true, just that I have never heard of it. Thinking logically, if there were something in how the ECM was programmed prior to the update, wouldn't it make sense the problem would have always existed? I would also think there would be a bulletin describing the issue and indicating the ECM update was the fix. When I fix a car and there is a bulletin which applies, I give the customer a copy of the bulletin with their receipt (and I'll concede most people probably don't do that).

Beyond that, it looks like you got hit for more than 2 hours of labor. An ECM reprogram should be an hour at best (and that's including some diag time).

Dunno ... sounds fishy.

Is the problem fixed?
 
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Thinking logically, if there were something in how the ECM was programmed prior to the update, wouldn't it make sense the problem would have always existed?
It's ridiculously easy to write software that causes a major change in performance after a specified amount of time has elapsed - long after the product has left the factory.

Just recently, Apple got caught doing it.

"Hey, boss - I just thought of a way to get existing customers back into our dealership service departments for a $300 'ECM re-flash' - and it won't cost us a penny!"

I'm not saying that's what happened - I'm just saying it's not beyond the realm of possibilities.
 

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LOL really we're going with conspiracy theories for ECU programming now? Jesus.
 

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You write software for microcontrollers, raine?

I do.

It happens more than you probably think.
 

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You write software for microcontrollers, raine?

I do.

It happens more than you probably think.
I don't have to write software for microcontrollers - that wasn't what I commented about. Try reading again before you try to impress someone with your job description ::wink::
 

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Try reading again before you try to impress someone with your job description ::wink::
Yeh, about that "try reading again" thing... ::wink::

I'm not saying that's what happened - I'm just saying it's not beyond the realm of possibilities.
 

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I'm not saying that's what happened - I'm just saying it's not beyond the realm of possibilities.
Right... so your way of trying to help the OP figure out his unexplained power drain is to make some conspiracy theory suggestion? Alrighty.

>:D

Back on topic - I just replaced my battery too with an Interstate, it's exactly 2 weeks tomorrow.

Tried to jump it and it didn't work.
Towed it to the mechanic that fixed it before and they got it running
They refreshed the computer and rebuilt the software and now it's no longer pulling it.

$325;

a) Is it truly unrelated to the other repair they did? It seems to be but I don't know
b) Can the computer really act out like that and do this type of stuff?
These parts of the original post don't make sense to me:

1st: You tried to jump it, but it didn't work? Did you give the battery enough time to recharge before trying to start it up?

2nd: If you couldn't fire it up with a jump, what exactly did that 'mechanic' do to get it running again?

And 3rd: Who and how did they "rebuild" the software? The mechanic did this? And then they charged you $325?!?

...I feel like you just got taken for $325.
 

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It's the PCM, they refreshed it and re-programmed it.
Yeah, definitely not. I talked to a couple of my favorite Frontier techs today. If there was a draw, it would come from the BCM (Body Control Module) and it's not something that gets a software update. If the BCM is the problem, the BCM gets replaced.

As for software updates and bulletins related to a parasitic draw, there are none.

Whatever they did for you sounds sketchy, or they just didn't explain it right.

The bottom line though is: Is your problem fixed?

It's ridiculously easy to write software that causes a major change in performance after a specified amount of time has elapsed - long after the product has left the factory.

Just recently, Apple got caught doing it.

"Hey, boss - I just thought of a way to get existing customers back into our dealership service departments for a $300 'ECM re-flash' - and it won't cost us a penny!"

I'm not saying that's what happened - I'm just saying it's not beyond the realm of possibilities.

Not to take this thread off topic, but ...

Definitely within the realm of possibility in terms of coding the software Ski man. However, the motivation isn't there. The coding would be done on the manufacturer level and they would not be getting paid for the out of warranty reflash.
 
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