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Summary
  • The P0606 is logged once an error is detected in the PCM. If you haven’t installed any components of questionable quality, you’re likely to need a replacement PCM/ECM.
  • The common causes of a P0606 error code include a bad PCM or outdated PCM software. It can also be triggered because of an issue in the PCM power or ground circuit.
  • Some of the common symptoms associated with this code include an illuminated check engine light, a no start condition, automatic transmission performance issues, and drivability problems.

Generic trouble codes like the code P0606 apply to most cars that come with on-board diagnostics (OBD). When this code appears on the code reader or scanner, among the first questions most people tend to ask themselves is, “what is the P0606 code?” Read on to find out more about this code, its symptoms, and causes.

What Does the P0606 Code Mean?

Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) P0606 stands for “Control Module Processor.” It is a non-specific, generic powertrain DTC indicating that there’s an error being detected in the powertrain control module (PCM). The engine controller (PCM/ECM) is basically a computer complete with RAM and ECU that processes inputs and fires output drivers as part of the programming algorithms.

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engine control module
Code P0606 is a non-specific, generic powertrain DTC indicating that there’s an error being detected in the powertrain control module (PCM).

The primary job of the PCM is to control certain aspects of the engine and transmission. Sensors provide input data to the PCM, then the module uses that data to control a variety of outputs, ranging from the fuel injectors to the transmission shift solenoids.

Furthermore, the PCM monitors the sensors, circuits, and devices it interacts with. The module also monitors itself for internal faults and will set code P0606 if it detects an internal error.

If you get code P0606 and you haven’t installed any components of questionable quality that might have caused the code, you’re likely to need a replacement PCM/ECM, which will need to be flash-programmed in almost every case on modern vehicles. Older engine/trans controllers were plug-and-play. Newer ones aren’t, and haven’t been for years.

If you get code P0606 and you haven’t installed any components of questionable quality that might have caused the code, you’re likely to need a replacement PCM/ECM, which will need to be flash-programmed in almost every case on modern vehicles.

– Richard McCuistian, ASE Certified Master Automobile Technician

Note: The definition of code P0606 may be different depending on the vehicle manufacturer. Consult the appropriate repair manual or repair database for the exact code definition.

What are the Possible Causes of the P0606 Code?

Knowing what’s causing the PCM failure could help you with troubleshooting. Keep in mind, however, that the causes may vary per vehicle model, make, and year, so pay close attention when diagnosing your car. Here are the common causes of PCM processor failure or code P0606:

  • Bad PCM
  • An issue with the PCM power or ground circuit
  • PCM software in need of an update
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What are the Possible Symptoms of the P0606 Code?

Code P0606 can cause driveability, engine efficiency, and convenience issues. You could face one or more of these symptoms if you’re running with a stored P0606 code:

automatic transmission
Problems with the automatic transmission’s performance are a symptom of the P0606 code.

How to Diagnose the P0606 Code

Diagnosing the P0606 code can be challenging, so it may be best to leave that task to your mechanic. If you do decide to do the task yourself, you’ll need the help of a detailed guide to help you do the troubleshooting properly.

How to Fix the P0606 Code

Fixing the P0606 code might be tricky since there’s no single solution. You’ll probably be better off leaving the fixing to your mechanic.

You can try to do it yourself, but you’ll need the help of online auto repair guides or a single-vehicle ALLDATA subscription to figure out the appropriate fix. Check a repair manual before working on your car and remember that what works for one particular model may not work for other models.

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About The Authors
Written By Automotive and Tech Writers

The CarParts.com Research Team is composed of experienced automotive and tech writers working with (ASE)-certified automobile technicians and automotive journalists to bring up-to-date, helpful information to car owners in the US. Guided by CarParts.com's thorough editorial process, our team strives to produce guides and resources DIYers and casual car owners can trust.

Reviewed By Technical Reviewer at CarParts.com

Richard McCuistian has worked for nearly 50 years in the automotive field as a professional technician, an instructor, and a freelance automotive writer for Motor Age, ACtion magazine, Power Stroke Registry, and others. Richard is ASE certified for more than 30 years in 10 categories, including L1 Advanced Engine Performance and Light Vehicle Diesel.

Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic. The accuracy and timeliness of the information may change from the time of publication.

File Under : OBD-II Trouble Codes Tagged With :
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