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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was told that my GEM module needed replaced. I had a rack replaced, and the P/S goes out after 30 seconds. the traced everything and determined that it was the GEM module. Ford wants $700 for it. $450 for the part and $250 for install.

I can get a used one on eBay. will it fit if it is the right model and /or year. or does it need to be programmed. I understand it is pretty easy to get to. Under the dash on the drivers side?

I also had the Neutral Safety Switch replaced a few months back, and the P/S issues were part of the problems I was having before it was replaced. Thanks.
 

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That sounds like a load of crap to me. With variable assist, if the system fails you receive full hydraulic pressure. It's not possible to lose power assist because of the GEM module. If you want to try another GEM module, grab one from a junkyard for $20 or so. But I think these assclowns screwed up the rack job (or put in a bad one) and are trying to cover their assclown asses.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The Variable Assist Power Steering II (VAPS II) system uses the Generic Electronic Module (GEM) to improve steering characteristics. The VAPS II system begins operation as soon as the GEM sees a change in the ignition switch position from START to RUN. The GEM maintains VAPS II control as long as the ignition switch is in the RUN position.
The level of assist provided by the VAPS II system depends on the vehicle speed. The faster the vehicle speed, the less assist provided by the VAPS II system. The vehicle speed is determined by the GEM, based upon the vehicle speed sensor (VSS) signal received by the GEM.
 

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I just replaced the GEM on a 99 taurus last week. I went to a you pull it junk yard, and it cost me 20 bucks plus tax. If the 97 is like the 99 then it's on the back side of your fuse box on the driver side by your feet. There are two bols that hold the fuse box, 7/16 if I remember correctly. Then there are three wiring clusters that get screwed into the fuse box, and they are held in by a 10mm. Remove the two bolts that hold the fuse box, and you lift up the bottom of the fuse box, and the top part of the fuse box will come out. Lift and pull motion. The GEM is then held onto the fuse box with one screw on the back side. Wasn't really hard at all. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Did you match up the part numbers? I have heard that there are 3 different part numbers for the GEM. Is there any way to get the part number without actually pulling the part?
 

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Did you match up the part numbers? I have heard that there are 3 different part numbers for the GEM. Is there any way to get the part number without actually pulling the part?
I found an exact match, but I did have to pull mine out first. There were two models I could use for mine, or at least I was given two to look for. I called the parts department at the local Ford dealer, and told them that I was going to buy a used GEM, and that I was going to install it myself. I then told the parts guy, that I was going to bring the car to their dealership to have them reprogram it. So, because he thought I was going to bring it up there for reprogramming, he was helpful over the phone. I even told him that I had allready talked to the service guy. I actually pulled a couple of GEM's out of a couple of 97's, but they were the wrong part number, I left them sitting on the seats. If you take the two bolts off that hold the fuse box on, and pull the fuse box out while leaving the three wire clusters attached, you might be able to twist it enough to see the number on the back. You could always pull it out all together, get the part number, and reinstall it if you had to. Then you could still drive it. I hope this helps.

They might of been 98's and not 97's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have been trying to pull the GEM out for almost two hours. I have removed the two bolts, but cannot for the life of me, dislodge the panel. It appears that the wires on the 3 clusters aren't long enough for me to pull the unit down out of the retaining bracket.
I'm trying to find out the part number, but at this point, if I can't get it out, I'll just have to get one, and take it to Ford and have it reprogrammed.
 

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An incorrectly installed neutral switch (TRS) will also affect VAPS function, that's why a bad one makes the car feel like the power steering is not all there. They have to be adjusted properly as part of the replacement. I wonder if your rack really was bad, or if your TRS was installed correctly......

(PS - is this a dealer doing all the work?)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, according to Ford, they bypassed the GEM and the P/S worked fine. That's how they figured out that it was the GEM. I replced the TRS, and it made no difference. After 30 seconds, the P/S is gone.

If I caould only figure out how to get the panel out and check the p/n on the GEM. In theory it looks easy, but I don't know what I'm doing...Or not doing.
 

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Those three wire clusters are held in with a 10mm bolt. Take those bolts out, and pull each one of the wire clusters out. that is what I did. Then I installed everything, and then put the three wire clusters back in. It's really pretty easy. As you lift the bottom of the fuse box up, pull at the same time. It will come out. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I can get to the first two bolts, but the third one which seeme to be the shortest appears unreachable. I can't remember who it was, but someone told me that I should be able to oull out the fuse box then remove the harness. This is a lot more difficult that I thought it was going to be.
 

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I can get to the first two bolts, but the third one which seeme to be the shortest appears unreachable. I can't remember who it was, but someone told me that I should be able to oull out the fuse box then remove the harness. This is a lot more difficult that I thought it was going to be.
You can pull out the whole thing and then remove the wiring harnesses. I did it both ways. I had to pull 4 GEM Modules before I found the right one, so I did it both ways. If you lift up on the fuse box, by the bottom where you removed the two bolts, pull at the same time. The higher you lift the bottom, the easier it should be to pull out.
 

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This might help.



 

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I just went back and read. There are three wire clusters that are plugged into the GEM Module at the bottom. You will need to pull those out also.
 

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Well, according to Ford, they bypassed the GEM and the P/S worked fine. That's how they figured out that it was the GEM. I replced the TRS, and it made no difference. After 30 seconds, the P/S is gone.

If I caould only figure out how to get the panel out and check the p/n on the GEM. In theory it looks easy, but I don't know what I'm doing...Or not doing.
This just doesn't make sense. How did they "bypass" the GEM? There's nothing they could do besides disconnect the VAPS connector at the rack. You could test that theory yourself by pulling the plug and driving it. Are there any other problems with the GEM? It's strange for an electronic part to function for 30 secs and then quit. Ususally if a transistor or quad driver fails they go out and don't come back.

Why was the rack replaced originally? Were there any VAPS problems before the replacement? Was the VAPS motor on the rack replaced too, or did they transfer the old one to the new rack?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
No other problems that I know of. I replaced the Neutral Safety Switch a few months back. Lost some power steering, and the radio quit and the windows would not work. When this started happening, I replaced the NSS thinking that the one I put in did not work. No improvement. Not usre how to adjust it. I just lined up the hole in the NSS and put it on.

They said it was the GEM, because apparently it lost output from the GEM module after 30 seconds. The actuator passed. And they said the pump is making enough pressure for normal operation.

Question, if I get the same part mumber of the GEM, do I need to do anything before I put in in? I understand there is a revised GEM (-14B205-) which has a calibration adjustment. Not sure if that means it can be programmed for a different model.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
You can pull out the whole thing and then remove the wiring harnesses. I did it both ways. I had to pull 4 GEM Modules before I found the right one, so I did it both ways. If you lift up on the fuse box, by the bottom where you removed the two bolts, pull at the same time. The higher you lift the bottom, the easier it should be to pull out.
When you puilled the four, were they ALL the same part number as the one you were taking out? Or were they different? Does the same part number not necessarily mean that it will work? thanks.
 

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When you puilled the four, were they ALL the same part number as the one you were taking out? Or were they different? Does the same part number not necessarily mean that it will work? thanks.
I pulled 4 GEM Modules, and all 4 had a different part number. The 4th was a perfect match. I was looking for 1 of 2 models, and I would have settled with either, it just so happened I found the exact model number.

Also the 14B205 will have 4 symbols before it, and 2 letters after it. I was looking for XF1T-14B205-AA, and I would have been fine with XF1T-14B205-AB.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well, I bought a GEM, model F6DB-14B205-AB. Was told that it would probably not have to be reprogrammed since it was an older year. Ford told me they don't make that part anymore, and that this part number was the current one. Since I can't remove this thing by myself, I'll have to take it to a shop and have them do it.
I don't know what else to try.
 

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I'm glad to see you got a new one. It's a bummer you can't seem to get it out. If you were near Tampa, I would have you come over, and I would swap it out for you. Hopefully when it does get installed, it fixes your problem. Good luck.
 
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