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I'm looking to purchase a p38 this year and am struggling with one of the issues i've been reading about.

Horror stories tell about p38 owners that are locked out of their vehicles and/or being stranded.

Something about a weak door lock triggering a code (BECM? EKA?) that effectively locks-down and/or bricks the car

Should i be so concerned about this? Any long term fixes available?

After all my reading this is the one issue that i'm most scared of.


Thanks
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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1,422 Posts
I'm looking to purchase a p38 this year and am struggling with one of the issues i've been reading about.

Horror stories tell about p38 owners that are locked out of their vehicles and/or being stranded.

Something about a weak door lock triggering a code (BECM? EKA?) that effectively locks-down and/or bricks the car

Should i be so concerned about this? Any long term fixes available?

After all my reading this is the one issue that i'm most scared of.


Thanks

"Overrated"? Absolutely not. The P-38 alarm system has probably been responsible for most of the ones that have been sent to the crusher, or firebombed by their justifiably frustrated owners. Put simply, it is fiddly, temperamental, and easy to annoy. Additionally, as they age they can become a bit senile as well.......It is however very easy to NOT annoy it.

If you are shopping, you can purchase an older Gems engined truck, and install a Mobi-Lize (Thread going currently) and install it.
This will prevent you from ever being stranded by the alarm system. Will not eliminate the alarm, just allows you to start if the alarm thinks it is being stolen......
OR you can buy one with TWO (or more!) working key fob remotes........AND service/ replace the door lock micro switches. These trucks will only bite you in the butt if you ignore issues like door latches. Having and using the fobs will generally mean you will never be stranded either. BE aware, for example, you can no longer buy key fob remotes for NAS spec trucks........(thus the importance of telling us where you are, so we can give you better information.......)
Of course, you can read the hundreds of threads here and on other RR sites which detail the agony and bliss of being thwarted by and eventually triumphing over the notorious P-38 alarm system.
If you are a keen do it yourself mechanic, and intend doing your own work, then go for it! If, however, you intend paying someone to work on it for you, you better have very deep pockets, and a great sense of humour:shock:
Happy hunting!
 

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Really, somebody took a P38 to the junkyard due to the alarm being jacked up? I have replaced my passenger side latch because it died and wouldn't allow the rear latch to function. But the knowledge base on here allowed me to diagnose and the repair itself was pretty easy. Never had any other problems with being locked out.
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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298 Posts
Well I bought my 2000 Autobiography for $1000 Cdn because it was immobilized and the owner did not want to pay a garage to fix it so I do think this leads to them being scrapped. Best solution is to never lock it although if the front seat door pulls jump around maybe you could still have issues.
 

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1970-1995 Range Rover Classic
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455 Posts
Just order a door lock from Marty to have a spare one and you will never have trouble.
Try the EKA at times and do the door lock check.
There is a lady in Britain who will modify GEMS to unlock them, unfortunately she does not do diesel or Bosch
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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My '02 P38 ended up getting donated to someone local with a lot more technical expertise than me as I was facing full EAS failure, super-lockout, possibly a bad valve, and the HVAC blends were DOA. Just too much time & frustration for a truck that cost me almost nothing. Took him 3+ hours dropping drivetrain & steering column out just so he could roll it onto the trailer.....life too short. If you can find a decent GEMs, the combo of Mobi + BECM programmability = a relatively frustration free experience. You'll still need spare door latches, as these seem to break more than a high use item should IMHO. My '96 has been problem free but the PO handled all the grief for me....though I still have a stuck passenger door handle that I'll need to replace once it gets warmer.
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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768 Posts
Every car made has its faults, there’s plenty of help and cures for the problems a p38 will throw at you, look after it, general maintenance and your have an expensive car at a cheap price.
most people have problems with the EAS, again if maintained it’s not a problem, and a smooth ride.
dont be frightened off by rumours, there a great car, fun to drive, once your hooked your love it
 
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