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Hi I own a 2003 mazda 6i 2.3L. I recently had an issue where the car started to reduce speed and idle out on me when i was on the highway with my check engine light coming on and blinking. The day before i had a CEL for a too lean in bank 1 which the shop i took it to to get checked cleared and told me if it returned to come back. After the car idled out on me on the side of the highway I had it towed to a mechanic shop in my city and the mechanic couldn't figure out why it wouldn't start. He came to the conclusion that it was the remote start the previous owner had installed(was a shitty job). I then took it to mazda dealership they didn't do anything to my car and tried to charge me for it(had a whole situation with the manager cussing me and calling me names). I then brought the car back home and attempted to DIM.. i removed the remote starter and taught myself soldering. All my wires are patched up fine now. The car cranks but will not start.. I also noticed after turning my key into the on position and waiting a bit that my CEL light blinks 8 times then goes back solid. I don't know what the issue is and as much as i don't want to with current changes in my life i might have to get rid of Shelly if she's gonna end up costing me too much to fix. Can anyone help point me in the right direction to whats the issue.
 

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Ive tried using a basic obdII reader on it and its not spitting any codes. Ive tried the spare key and the same. The only think noticeable is the solid check engine light that blinks 8 times then goes back solid when putting the car in the ON position.
 

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Read the comments in the videos.

This guy said it was the computer...

Some people here said it was a bad battery terminal.... other had a bad 120 amp fuse....

I'd start with the fuse and battery terminals.
 

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I then took it to mazda dealership they didn't do anything to my car and tried to charge me for it(had a whole situation with the manager cussing me and calling me names).
Dealership service departments pretty much universally charge $80+ just to look at you, nevermind the car. We don't think they did anything, but they seem to think scratching their ass and shrugging their shoulders counts for $80 or more of something done. Setting that part aside, the cussing and name calling is ALWAYS out of line. It's never, ever acceptable. Period. Even if you started it. Which you shouldn't (let's try to be adults), but even if you - the customer - did start it. I'd be letting the regional manager or the dealership's owner know about that experience.

...i removed the remote starter and taught myself soldering. All my wires are patched up fine now.
There's an array of things that could be wrong, unfortunately.

Depending on just exactly how shitty of a job the previous owner who installed the remote start did, you may have overlooked something. How long have you had the car? It's possible he did such a shitty job that he jacked up the ECU or some other critical component which took a little time or another, otherwise innocuous, event to finally fail completely. One of those critical components like the ECU may have just quit without regard to anything you or the previous owner did.

Honestly, go over your wiring again to be sure. If possible, get your hands on a detailed wiring diagram - the Mazda factory electrical manual is a great resource - to verify. Unfortunately Haynes and Chilton manuals don't have enough pages to contain detailed wiring diagrams.

Assuming for the sake of argument the remote start extraction is all fine and good (cranking would suggest to me it was) and there's not a lingering electrical issue, grab yourself a Haynes or Chilton manual. Seriously, they're not expensive but they can be invaluable. Flip to the troubleshooting/diagnostics section and see if there's anything that describes the blinking CEL. There's always a section about diagnosing starting issues - browse through that as well.

Fuses are easy to check, so verify at least the big/major ones to be sure.

The pattern blinking CEL suggests the computer detects something is wrong even before you crank the engine. Nearly everything I suggest below are not the kind of issues that I'd expect to get a 8x blinking key-on-but-before-crank CEL over.

Assuming the computer wasn't just screwing with you when it said too lean, that means you were getting too much air or not enough fuel. Lean mixture could be caused by a number of things, but if I had to pull a guess out of my keister I'd maybe lean (no pun intended) toward a fuel delivery issue. A 2003 probably has 168,000 miles or so on it? In order of expense/complexity - fuses(?), fuel filter, fuel pump relay, fuel pump, bad fuel injectors, etc. You could maybe start by checking the fuel rail pressure. Consult your Haynes manual for the expected values.

Other possibilities on the "air" side of the combustion triangle are things like TPS and MAF/MAP sensors. Heck, pull off the air intake snorkel and look inside the throttle body to be sure the throttle plate is closed properly?

Timing out of whack is another option. I think there was a crank-no-start thread a few days ago where someone else suggested a bad crank angle sensor.
 

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Read the comments in the videos.

This guy said it was the computer...
Im actually the second commenter on that video asking the guy how'd he fix it with him responding the Ecu lol. But i have managed to get my ecu off the mounting wall and find the part number. I found someone selling it on eBay for 65. The only thing I'm hesitant about is the fact if i purchase this used ECU will i have to get my key reprogrammed?( Asking bc since the closest mazda dealership to me is the one i had with the issue id rather not go back to them at all. The next closest dealership is almost an hour away which will be a hell of a towing fee.) If i can swap the ecu without reprogramming then i will try purchasing the ecu off eBay and swapping it seeing what happens. But if i need reprogramming then i may be out of luck.




There's an array of things that could be wrong, unfortunately.

Depending on just exactly how shitty of a job the previous owner who installed the remote start did, you may have overlooked something. How long have you had the car? It's possible he did such a shitty job that he jacked up the ECU or some other critical component which took a little time or another, otherwise innocuous, event to finally fail completely. One of those critical components like the ECU may have just quit without regard to anything you or the previous owner did.

Honestly, go over your wiring again to be sure. If possible, get your hands on a detailed wiring diagram - the Mazda factory electrical manual is a great resource - to verify. Unfortunately Haynes and Chilton manuals don't have enough pages to contain detailed wiring diagrams.

Assuming for the sake of argument the remote start extraction is all fine and good (cranking would suggest to me it was) and there's not a lingering electrical issue, grab yourself a Haynes or Chilton manual. Seriously, they're not expensive but they can be invaluable. Flip to the troubleshooting/diagnostics section and see if there's anything that describes the blinking CEL. There's always a section about diagnosing starting issues - browse through that as well.

Fuses are easy to check, so verify at least the big/major ones to be sure.

The pattern blinking CEL suggests the computer detects something is wrong even before you crank the engine. Nearly everything I suggest below are not the kind of issues that I'd expect to get a 8x blinking key-on-but-before-crank CEL over.

Assuming the computer wasn't just screwing with you when it said too lean, that means you were getting too much air or not enough fuel. Lean mixture could be caused by a number of things, but if I had to pull a guess out of my keister I'd maybe lean (no pun intended) toward a fuel delivery issue. A 2003 probably has 168,000 miles or so on it? In order of expense/complexity - fuses(?), fuel filter, fuel pump relay, fuel pump, bad fuel injectors, etc. You could maybe start by checking the fuel rail pressure. Consult your Haynes manual for the expected values.

Other possibilities on the "air" side of the combustion triangle are things like TPS and MAF/MAP sensors. Heck, pull off the air intake snorkel and look inside the throttle body to be sure the throttle plate is closed properly?

Timing out of whack is another option. I think there was a crank-no-start thread a few days ago where someone else suggested a bad crank angle sensor.
So i went over the fuses they all check out fine. I replaced the Crankshaft Sensor and the Camshaft sensor because i was told its best to change those at the same time. Fuel is coming out of the rail. I was going to check the MAF/MAP today and possibly see if it needs a good cleaning. I do really need to know if swapping the ECU with one of the same model and part number will work without the need of reprograming.
 

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Replacement ECU must be flashed to car or it will go into theft mode.

Sounds like you are either in theft mode now or whatever they used to bypass the transponder key is either defective or has caused problems.
 

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Replacement ECU must be flashed to car or it will go into theft mode.

Sounds like you are either in theft mode now or whatever they used to bypass the transponder key is either defective or has caused problems.
So what should my next step be then for this issue?
 

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If it were my car, I would be searching for a non-dealer electrical specialist first. They can be hard to find and are never cheap, but a good one will know his stuff and will should have the capability to flash an ECU.

If the car is indeed stuck in theft mode then you will need someone to reflash the ECU to get it working again. The biggest problem with aftermarket remote starters other than a bad install is that they have to somehow bypass the factory theft controls.

Electrical issues can be a nightmare, take a deep breath and look for a specialist.
 

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I figured why not record whats going on and show y'all it probably will be a lot more helpful or narrow down the solution.
I took this this morning and i should've probably left the driver door open so you can hear it crank better instead of it sounding so muffled.


 

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I don't know the answer but if the vehicle was in "theft mode" wouldn't the light that shows a key inside a vehicle, stay ON?
 

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I don't know the answer but if the vehicle was in "theft mode" wouldn't the light that shows a key inside a vehicle, stay ON?
Now is where the depth of all come to play... So when the remote starter was removed the car had a weak crank.. thought it was just the battery dying had it charged and it was a little stronger. I then started following wires and found that near the key barrel some wires coming out of the connector had tape on it. When i removed the tape i found more bad wiring I'm assuming from the remote starter. i snipped it out and tried a butt connector but wasn't successful. At this time my anti theft was blinking rapidly whenever i put the key in to try start the car and it wouldn't crank at all. I purchased a new connector with a decent length wire and snipped and soldered the new connector. The antitheft went back to normal and recognize my key and now i get the successful cranking you've seen in the video. I kid you not its sounds a lot better than when my issues first came around and it wouldn't start.
 
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