PATS Module - Replacement/Swap Questions | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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PATS Module - Replacement/Swap Questions


Well-Known Member
October 20, 2003
Reaction score
City, State
Lebanon, OR
Year, Model & Trim Level
1999 XLT
Alrighty, this '98 5.0 that's plaguing me has the following DTCs:

PATS B1232
PATS B1681
PATS U1147

I really can't find anything specific here or googling around, just a bunch of ancillary stuff to suggest that the PATS module has gone bad.

Will the PATS module from a 2000 4.0 OHV work in a 1998 5.0? Are they the same part?

Is the R&R procedure for the '98 and '00 the same as on a '99? I ask, because I've got the factory service manuals for the '99, but don't have them for a '98 or '00.
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PATS has to be matched to the other modules in the vehicle, so i suspect it will not worj... however, i think you can reflash the module, so it will work, but with some extra steps i think... lets see what others think!

The key has a code in it that must match the module which then tells the engines computer that we have a match which then allows the truck to run

The halo ring in your ignition will often get damaged or just fail and will no longer read the code from the key, this is the first place I would check, the ignition halo

You cannot replace the pats
Module in a 98 without also replacing the key and the computer, all 3 must be happy with each other.

Any work Done to the truck before this all happened?

I'm not sure about the U1147 code but the other two are consistent with that halo (transceiver) module failing, or the wiring or connector to it.

You can replace that without any programming needed. I don't know for certain if a '98 5.0 and '00 4.0L OHV use the same transceiver module, but I'd expect that they do because there were no technical changes made to PATS within that span, and I'm not aware of any steering column/lock-cylinder-area (mounting related) changes... unless anyone else knows of any? I'd go to an online Ford parts dealer like linked below and try to lookup that part (I don't know the part #) to see if it's listed as same part # for those two vehicles.

I've attached the '98 Workshop Manual, PATS section for troubleshooting.


  • Workshop.Manual.PATS.pdf
    941.5 KB · Views: 99

fyi you can use the ignition halo from any 98-2001 ford ranger explorer etc, any ford vehicle from 98-2004 or so should have a similar halo)

The halo simply reads the key it does not have any programming in it
I have seen many halos broken over the years, they are fragile and probably the only
Problematic part of the pats system

No work done to it. It sat for about 3 months since the last time it started.

I understand key programming, and I can have the keys sync'd to the replacement module (if that module is needed).

I'll start with the exciter ring/halo and go on from there.

Thank you!


PATS B1232 - PATS transceiver circuit fault.
PATS B1681 - No transceiver signal received from the module/no transceiver detected.

Both of these, at least in my specific case, were due to a bad exciter ring/halo in the ignition.

Pulled one out of my "parts" Explorer, and installed it, those codes went away, and programming keys was successful!

Got it started, and on to the next issue(s)!

From Wikipedia regarding ford securilock or “pats” as we know it

“For the 1999 model year, all Ford Motor Company vehicles equipped with the Passive Anti-Theft System use the PATS II system. The PATS II system was introduced on roughly half of the PATS equipped vehicles for the 1998 model year. The other half of the PATS equipped vehicles for the 1998 model year were equipped with the PATS I system. Many 2000 and later Ford vehicles use the E-PATS system, which uses an encrypted transponder in the key.”

I know these as pats “a” “b” and “e”

I know for a fact a and b disables injectors
I know for a fact that e disables the starter

Because I am the guy that wires these in and out

It is possible that pats a disabled the fuel pump? I guess so but we have never seen it
Pats a as far as I know also disables the injectors

earlier in the thread you also said that you have battery voltage at the fuel pump connector? When the truck would not start and you checked.

Every 98 I have ever worked on the pats disables the injectors not the pump

I have never seen a pats system disable the fuel pump just fyi

Glad it was the halo, the most common issue with the pats system

As J_C mentioned, at least SOME of the world market second gens have an extra module by the sending unit, presumably as part of the alarm. I believe this module was easily bypass-able, unlike the rest of PATS.

I don't know what to say.

Besides this '98, I had a '99 (not my current '99) that I was working on a few years ago and the only key physically broke. A 3rd-party locksmith with their cloned knock-off keys didn't fix it. After getting a new key from them, it briefly started, then stopped due to lack of fuel. Cranked, but wouldn't start. No fuel pump priming. After taking it to the dealer for new keys, it worked again, and the fuel pump primed when you Key-On/Engine-Off - the same behavior this '98 did, after we resolved the PATS issue. Literally as soon as the new keys got programmed, the fuel pump started priming and the thing started.

Also, my sister used to have an '02 Mustang that she was accenting in gaudy pink. She bought some pink knock-off PATS keys for it off of eBay that would never program correctly, even from the dealer. Keys were cut, mechanically functioned, but trying to start it resulted in the same behavior - no fuel pump prime/operate.

Eminently replicable, we could put the OEM key back into it, start it up and it runs. Taking that key out, and using one of the knock-offs, it would briefly start with what fuel was already primed in the system, then die when that ran out.

I attempted to pull the "chip" out of her single working factory key and install it in the pink key, and I broke the damned thing. After buying her replacement STRATTEC keys and having those cut/programmed, starting restored, and again, with the "real" key, you can Key-On/Engine-Off and hear the pump prime, but with the knock-off keys, that behavior didn't happen.

I really don't know what to say, other than my direct experience with (3) different Fords (two Explorer, one Mustang) is that a PATS failure disabled the fuel pump, and resolving the PATS issue re-enabled it.

tl;dr - The fuel pump makes a very distinct sound when it's activated to prime with the key on. On 3 different Fords, with PATS faulting, it did not activate/prime. Resolving the PATS issue, and the pump activates/primes.

Edited to add: There are/were no aftermarket systems on either of the Explorers that had this issue - bone stock. The Mustang did have an aftermarket alarm on it, but it was just a cheapy basic "woop-woop" system, it did not have any advanced features like a component disable or anything like that.


I wish it would just disable the dang fuel pump and starter would be so much easier to bypass lol lol