Bluebaru

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After an eventful day of doing Union Springs and Dunkel Hollow, we headed back, the long way, to camp, on Long Run Rd., West of Harrisonburg, via one of our favorite, scenic trails, Rough Run Rd



Check out some of our other trips here. https://www.youtube.com/@VABrosOff-Road
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Mark S.

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Looks like fun, but could be bad for the car. During the Offroadeo in Texas, our guide/instructor recommended keeping speed to a minimum while fording water crossings. I suspect this has to do with the fact the PCM is in the left/front wheel well where it is exposed to water splashed up from the wheels.
 

wireman

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Looks like fun, but could be bad for the car. During the Offroadeo in Texas, our guide/instructor recommended keeping speed to a minimum while fording water crossings. I suspect this has to do with the fact the PCM is in the left/front wheel well where it is exposed to water splashed up from the wheels.
That's what I don't understand. Why they would locate the PCM there.

In the engine compartment, drivers side, there seems to be room to mount it there or at least above the wheel liner where it's less susceptible to water.
 

Ford Motor Company

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After an eventful day of doing Union Springs and Dunkel Hollow, we headed back, the long way, to camp, on Long Run Rd., West of Harrisonburg, via one of our favorite, scenic trails, Rough Run Rd
Check out some of our other trips here. https://www.youtube.com/@VABrosOff-Road
Great video! Thanks for sharing your adventures with us! 🏕
 


Mark S.

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Why they would locate the PCM there.
Unknown. Turbocharged engines generate a lot of heat, so PCM overheat might be a concern when locating it in the engine bay. When configuring the engine bay for aircraft, designers often utilize a blast tube for heat-sensitive components. A blast tube directs air from a cold intake to a given component. It seems like you could do that with the PCM in the engine bay, but a blast tube won't provide any benefit when sitting in traffic with an idling engine. A fan might do the trick, similar to what engineers did with the LED headlights, but that adds to costs.

If heat is a problem for this PCM, then Ford's engineers likely chose the least-expensive solution: Mount the PCM somewhere it isn't exposed to excess heat and incorporate operational limits (such as maximum water fording depth) to prevent environmental damage.
 
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wireman

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Unknown. Turbocharged engines generate a lot of heat, so PCM overheat might be a concern when locating it in the engine bay. When configuring the engine bay for aircraft, designers often utilize a blast tube for heat-sensitive components. A blast tube directs air from a cold intake to a given component. It seems like you could do that with the PCM in the engine bay, but a blast tube won't provide any benefit when sitting in traffic with an idling engine. A fan might do the trick, similar to what engineers did with the LED headlights, but that adds to costs.

If heat is a problem for this PCM, then Ford's engineers likely chose the least-expensive solution: Mount the PCM somewhere it isn't exposed to excess heat and incorporate operational limits (such as maximum water fording depth) to prevent environmental damage.
Understand Mark about the heat issue, but I've had other turbo vehicles with the ECM located in the engine area. Can't say for sure but I think on the 2018 Escape Titanium I had it was located there.

Not sure where it's located on the latest gen Escape, which is basically the same as the BS.

Where the ECM is located now on the BS it just doesn't seem to me that another spot wasn't a viable option. Especially with a water fording ability of 24."

Also, with it being subject to road salt in the winter doesn't help. It looks to me that possibly the connector could have been located higher and that might help.

I'm no engineer, but like other life's mysteries it probably won't be solved on this forum.
 
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Bluebaru

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Looks like fun, but could be bad for the car. During the Offroadeo in Texas, our guide/instructor recommended keeping speed to a minimum while fording water crossings. I suspect this has to do with the fact the PCM is in the left/front wheel well where it is exposed to water splashed up from the wheels.
The Badlands is rated for 23.6" of water fording at speeds, not to exceed 4mph, if I remember the owners manual correctly. My interpretation, of that, is, aside from, if you are in 23.6" of water, don't go over 4mph, is, Your safe speed, in water, will depend on the water's depth, ie you need to take into consideration, your Bow wave, if any. There are YouTube videos, out there, that explain how to deal with and minimize Bow Waves. You won't have a Bow Wave high enough to be a concern until water levels get to the bottom of your bumper, at almost any speed. Of course aquaplaning is a whole different thing.
Of course we know quality control can be an issue, with Ford and a few people have had issues with water fording at lesser depths. Possibly improper water proofing, of the PCM, at the factory but of course we are taking the owners word, of their situation. I guess if you plan on going in deep water, you might want to do it while it's still under warranty and it wouldn't hurt to be able to document, the depth and speed, if possible.
 
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Dude

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The Badlands is rated for 23.6" of water fording at speeds, not to exceed 4mph, if I remember the owners manual correctly. My interpretation, of that, is, aside from, if you are in 23.6" of water, don't go over 4mph, is, Your safe speed, in water, will depend on the water's depth, ie you need to take into consideration, your Bow wave, if any. There are YouTube videos, out there, that explain how to deal with and minimize Bow Waves. You won't have a Bow Wave high enough to be a concern until water levels get to the bottom of your bumper, at almost any speed. Of course aquaplaning is a whole different thing.
Of course we know quality control can be an issue, with Ford and a few people have had issues with water fording at lesser depths. Probably improper water proofing, of the PCM, at the factory. I guess if you plan on going in deep water, you might want to do it while it's still under warranty and it wouldn't hurt to be able to document, the depth and speed, if possible.
Will need to document depth, speed and time duration the two connectors and the computer mounted on drivers side front fender are under water. I recall these are mounted on the badlands about 17” plus/minus depending on tire size, lift, etc.

The amount of time the connectors and electronic components remain submerged is important to note. But there are no specs from Ford for how long these can remain submerged.
 

Mark S.

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I think you open yourself to a warranty claim denial if you drive fast enough through water to inundate the PCM, even if the water is below Ford's published maximum fording depth. Under the heading "What is not covered?" in Ford's Warranty Guide you'll see:

Damage Caused By:
  • driving through water deep enough to cause water to be ingested into any component. i.e. powertrain components
While emminently capable compared to most other vehicles in its segment, the Bronco Sport is not meant to be a hardcore off-roader.
 
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RushMan

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The Badlands is rated for 23.6" of water fording at speeds, not to exceed 4mph, if I remember the owners manual correctly. My interpretation, of that, is, aside from, if you are in 23.6" of water, don't go over 4mph, is, Your safe speed, in water, will depend on the water's depth, ie you need to take into consideration, your Bow wave, if any. There are YouTube videos, out there, that explain how to deal with and minimize Bow Waves. You won't have a Bow Wave high enough to be a concern until water levels get to the bottom of your bumper, at almost any speed. Of course aquaplaning is a whole different thing.
Of course we know quality control can be an issue, with Ford and a few people have had issues with water fording at lesser depths. Possibly improper water proofing, of the PCM, at the factory but of course we are taking the owners word, of their situation. I guess if you plan on going in deep water, you might want to do it while it's still under warranty and it wouldn't hurt to be able to document, the depth and speed, if possible.
Ford media and the engineers who write the owner's manual don't agree on things. Another example is Ford media suggesting/showing hanging things from the handles on the rear hatch, while the Owner's Manual says not to hang anything on the rear hatch.
 

BourbonRunner

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While emminently capable compared to most other vehicles in its segment, the Bronco Sport is not meant to be a hardcore off-roader.
QFT. It's certainly a capable little vehicle.

Considering the location and the overall popularity of these, especially in Northern salt-heavy states (we saw them EVERYWHERE in southern Vermont over the weekend), Ford may want to reconsider the placement of the ECM in the refresh, if not for water fording but instead for salt intrusion/damage and longevity of the vehicle. Here in the DPRMD they've adopted pre-treating roads for winter weather in the past few years. Used to just be highways, now they're doing neighborhoods.

Problem is the brine is causing premature rust issues and cars are literally rotting away from it and fast.
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