98 Mercury Mountaineer no Start ECM has received signal from anti theft system that a violation occurred

while driving my 98 Mercury Mountaineer stalled and then would not start again. A few days later i had someone come and look at it. He discovered that there was NO oil. He told me that the oil pan has a sensor that will shut down the vehicle that is low on oil so that you don’t ruin your engine. Makes sense. We put in oil, still will not start. I went and rented a code reader from autozone. It gave me the P1260 code, which is Theft detected- vehicle immobilized. and also a p1000- Monitor testing not completed.
I was told the P1000 is no big deal and that wouldnt stop my engine from not starting. Ive tried to reset the PATS and am not really sure if it worked. I used the key less entry pad on the drivers door to unlock the doors, because somone said that would reset the anti theft. Still nothing. Ive unhooked the battery. Nothing. Ive called the dealership, but because the car is older then ten years they cannot help, he wouldnt even give me advice on what i should or could do. I have fuel, i have spark, the engine turns over it just wont start. Not sure what i should do next. Any suggestions or help are appreciated.

Ford Ignition modules was a big problem back then… Same symptoms I had with my old Ford Tempo…the car would crank but not start and If you let it sit for a while it will start again.

Its been sitting for over a week and two days since i put oil in. Feeling pretty dumb about the oil thing, because i should know better! but S*** happens. Someone said to unhook the battery completely for two days. So i will go back tomorrow and try again.

Found this online for similar issue-

try turning the key on and leave it on for about two minutes or until the theft light stops flashing then try to start the truck. this will reset the system if the tranciever in the column is working

Disconnecting the battery for two days is misguided advice. It doesn’t take anywhere near that long for the stored energy to dissipate and cause a full reset. But security issues are more persistent just to stop this kind of method of theft from occurring. They have specific reset procedures and may require special diagnostic tools to access the module that controls the PATS. It will display if the keys are being detected and pass the authentication test…

How did you verify you have fuel AND spark?

Fuel pump is running, there is fuel pressure. my friend tested to see if
the spark plugs were sparking. I was thinking the same thing about the two
days and unhooked battery. Desperate to get this car going and cant afford
a tow let alone pay for a certified mechanic. so i am to the point where
ill try almost anything.

I expect you alrealdy know that the best way to get this fixed is to tow the vehicle to a Ford dealership. They’ll have the equipment needed to diagnose a problem with the security system. This assume the security system is OEM and original to the vehicle. If they tell you to go away then, you’ll have to contact Ford Corporation and issue a complaint. The dealership can’t turn Ford’s customers away just b/c the car is over 10 years old. Not if Ford Corp has any say in the matter. What they were probably telling you is they can’t offer that advice over the phone (for free in other words).

If you just want to try something yourself, and it cranks ok, and the spark plugs are firing ok, next step I’d try is spray some starter fluid into the intake manifold and see if it will start and run briefly at least. If it does, you’ll know you have a fuel system problem. At which point you may be back to square one, the security system is preventing the fuel injection system from working. But at least you’ll know more than before.

My car is 30 plus miles away from the closest dealership. And that dealership has already said they will not work on a car that is older than 10nyears. Talked to a local shop and they said they have the equipment to diagnose and reset if need be. Plus side is it’s on the outside of town so I can be pulled instead of paying money for a tow.

If the local shop can’t fix it, phone up the dealership and tell them you’re thinking about buying a new Ford, and would like to give them an opportunity to sell you one, but you want to get your 98 fixed first. They might send a tow truck out to your home and tow it for free. It’s called social engineering … lol …

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I believe a professional diagnoses will save time in this case.

I would like to know in what part of the country are they so desperate that a car salesmen would pay to have a 20 year old disabled vehicle towed 30 miles for the opportunity to meet a stranger?

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Did you try the reset procedure I posted above yet?
Costs nothing and only takes a few minutes…

The person you called and who told you the vehicle has a sensor that will shut down the engine and prevent damage is incorrect. It does not. This was a GM thing back in the 70s an 80s. Even with that damage could occur.

You state there was NO oil. This means a big problem and which may or may not be related to the no-start condition.

Fuel and spark leaves only one thing. Compression or lack of. It might not be a bad idea to pull a few spark plugs and run a compression test on a couple of cylinders.
Out of oil can sometimes lead to timing chain issues. If it were me I’d want to get a handle on whether or not the engine is possilby scrap before going too far with hit.

You can’t be serious , a non running vehicle towed for free in the chance the person might buy a vehicle . I don’t think so.

how much oil did you add? compare that to how much the engine holds.

If the engine holds 5 quarts of oil (likley,) and you added 4.5, then your engine is likely junk. If you added 1 quart, then your engine has a much better chance of being ok.

How have you verified fuel pressure? Many Fords have an inertia switch that cuts the fuel pump off, and I have seen many of these trip with just a bump (my sister had an Escort that would trip the inertia switch if she hit a speed bump too hard.) Although, I’m not positive if your Mountaineer has one or not.

If the vehicle is still on the side of the road, you’re gonna have a hard time getting the right answers until you get it somewhere that has tools that can check things- whether that be your home or a shop.

I added three qts. We did check the switch and it was good. Was able to tow the car home. It’s just trying to find some one with the time and knowledge to take a look at it.

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Be careful here… PATs will never ever cause a vehicle to stall. Once the engine is started and running. The engine control system will ignore any other information it receives from PATs until the next start up event. Additionally Oil level is never taken into consideration by Ford for a forced engine shut down. ok4450 got it right, a warning indicator will come, the engine can seize up and stop running from a lack of oil but the engine will never be forcibly be shut down by the control module for low oil or low oil pressure.

Don’t worry about the exterior key pad. PATS and Keyless entry are two separate security systems. The door key code has no involvement with PATs. The PATS system operation is strictly between the Key, the transceiver that reads the key, the PATS module that determines if the Key is correct and the engine control module which operates the function of the engine controls.

The 1260 indicate that a theft was detected… It is possible that that a PATs problem has occurred preventing the vehicle from starting but remember point 1., PATS will not stall a vehicle. The P1000 can occur because someone cleared the engine controller codes or the engine Controller lost power. (The PCM/engine controller uses switch ignition power to wake up and run the vehicle. The module also has a KAM circuit (Keep Alive circuit that keeps the modules memory of things it has learned and adapted too. A loss of KAM will result in a P1000 and will prevent the PCM from operating correctly. The thing is, your scanner talked to the PCM to get the P1000, this means the PCM is coming online, this does not mean you do not have an intermittent issue with the power input however.

Before going too deep, look at the PATs lamp when attempting to start the vehicle. If the lamp flashes rapidly, the theft system is activated. If the light goes out, PATs is satisfied and not preventing the engine start, Meaning you need to look elsewhere for what is ailing the truck.

If the PATs lamp does NOT flash or stay continuously illuminated:

  • Does the engine crank? If so, does it sound normal when cranking? Simply does the engine seem to turn over at the normal speed? Does it Crank over very slow? Does it just make a whirling sound when cranking? (Broken timing chains pretty much usually result situations where the operator can hear that the engine is not cranking over normally. This happens when the valves bend or get hung open when the cam stops turning)
  • Does the Check Engine Lamp go out when cranking?
  • Does it have Spark?
  • Have you attempted to start the vehicle with starter fluid? (Don’t go over board with this stuff, this truck does have a waste spark ignition type system. Sometimes it can sniffle (Backfire) up thru the intake. Too much stating fluid can cause a pretty good thermal event… (AKA a loud POW and subsequent engine bay fire. a little will do you, dont flood the thing with the spray… If you hear it trying to pop back thru the intake dont keep spraying )

Lets see what you really have going on before you go crazy with tow bills and or dealers. If PATS or a module up issue is present, then maybe a dealer scan tool will be required.

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Tongue in cheek country, Nevada.

had nothing to do with pats. he will run compression test tomorrow, but
said my engine might possibly be fried from running it with no oil.