1997 Ram B2500 van, 318 engine. Where is the BCM located? Best to by a new one and have the dealer reprogram it or are the companies where you send your old one to be redone better? Company or brand recommendation?
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The BCM controls the dash gauges primarily, the power door locks and the airbag system. Actually everything that is not engine related. The PCM is the entire vehicle engine computer. Usually, if the dash gauges go out, the van can still run and drive. But, you have no idea what's going on otherwise.
Usually the Chrysler p/n for our vans for the BCM is a TRW 68HC11K4 or 68HC11KA4. The BCM is used by OBD-II feedback. Not sure what the extra "A" difference is with the p/n's. I thought that the BCM was offered in 1998 to 2003. Yours being a 1997 is odd having the older dash design that has no digital feedback and not OBD-II ready.
The PCM is under the tinny hood, right in the middle at the top. Look for a casted aluminum box thing with three wire bundles going to it.
As for the BCM, it was mentioned that its' part of the instrument cluster or that it is located under the drivers' seat. I've only known one other person that posted in a Dodge Ram Van forum about this problem but never got word back of the BCMs actual location.
And FYI, the Ram Truck BCM is not the exact same as the Ram Van. They are similar though.