How do you manually program a Toyota ECU?

I had to replace the computer in my Toyota after an accident. That part is done, but now the ECU needs to be programmed so that my car will start. I would love to avoid any more mechanic bills because of this accident, so I'm hoping to do this myself. How do you manually program a Toyota ECU?

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Answer provided by
Lynell Spencer
Answered on Apr 25, 2022
Yikes—I’m so sorry! Getting your car back on the road after an accident can seem like obstacle after obstacle.
You can manually program a Toyota ECU with nothing but a paperclip and sharp eyesight—although the process requires leaving your car running for a while.
Here is what you need to do:
  • First, locate the ECU plug/connector. This is below your steering wheel near your driver’s side door. (This is the plug that is used for your engine diagnostics and emissions test.)
  • Take a paperclip (or other sturdy but flexible wire) and bend it into a U shape.
  • Stick one end of the wire in pin slot 4, and the other end in pin slot 13.
  • Leave the paperclip inserted, and start the car.
  • Let the car run for 30 minutes. (You can go a little over, but not under)
  • Turn the ignition off, remove the paperclip, and your car should start normally with your remote key fob.
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