TuneECU won’t connect to my bike – How to solve

TuneECU won’t connect – check the basics

If you’re using TuneECU software and cannot get it to connect to your bike, then here are some of the things you may be doing wrong.

1. check your bike is actually compatible

Even if you’ve previously looked, do check again on TuneECU’s compatibility chart. You can access the current one here.  Your exact model/engine/year must be specified. Do not assume compatibility because of similarity to your model.

There are also cut off points by bike year or VIN number after which your bike may not be covered.

The compatibility chart also advises on which interface to use with your bike. Some models work with both the bluetooth interface and the cabled connection. Some only by cable and some only by bluetooth.
See the example of compatibility in the following example. Note the column headings. The first column USB (1) refers to the cabled interface connection. OBD (2) refers to a bluetooth interface. OBDLink (3) refers to a more advanced bluetooth connection.
If your bike is a Bonneville 865cc then the cabled interface will cover diagnostics as well as reading and writing the ECU map. Bluetooth interfaces will only cover diagnostics.

TuneECU compatibility chart for your bike

2. is the interface you’re using recommended by tunecu?

This is one of the biggest fails for connection. There are numerous vendors out there selling what they claim to be hardware that will work. Many have not even tested their own product but simply tag TuneECU to get sales. Nor is there any consistency in their cables. They may buy from one supplier one month and then another two months down the line.

The cabled interface must have an FTDi chipset. However, it does not end there. The vast majority of cables claiming to have this IC are not even genuine. To add to that the actual electronic circuits are very poor, using the cheapest components. Even if you can connect to your bike, the connection is not reliable. The last thing you need when trying to perform a remap is disconnection half way through leaving you with a dead ECU.

3. is the adaptor you’re using wired correctly?

With the exception of Triumph bike models, which use the standard 16 pin OBD2 style plug, an adaptor is needed. A failed connection could be due to a poorly wired adaptor or one that isn’t correctly wired. 

Depending on the year and model, bikes use different protocols to connect. Some adaptors in the market are not fully wired.

If you are handy and have tried to make your own adaptor, check your pinout. But please know what you’re doing and don’t poke around with bare wires. Making the wrong connection with 12v going into the wrong pin could end up being very costly.

All our adaptors are professionally made and moulded. Check the range here.

4. check installation between the interface and your android device/laptop

If connecting your cable to a PC you must make sure it has installed correctly in Windows. This means the correct drivers have loaded and the cable is correctly recognised by Device Manager. 

Likewise when using TuneECU with your Android device, Android will confirm recognition with a pop up window that it has discovered a USB device. Click on OK to proceed.

TuneECU recognising your cable on Android

If such a message does not appear then the following issues are possible:

  • Again, the cable you have is not compatible/poor quality
  • The adaptor between the interface and your Android device is problematic
  • The Android device you’re using does not work with OTG (On The Go)
  • OTG needs to be manually activated on your phone/tablet