Dakota 2WD V8-4.7L Flex Fuel (2009)
Alarm Module: Description and Operation
Sentry Key Immobilizer Module (SKREEM) - Operation
The Sentry Key REmote Entry Module (SKREEM) (also known as the Sentry Key Immobilizer Module/SKIM or the Wireless Control Module/WCM)
contains a Radio Frequency (RF) transceiver and a microprocessor. The SKREEM transmits RF signals to, and receives RF signals from the Sentry Key
transponder through a tuned antenna enclosed within the molded plastic antenna ring integral to the SKREEM housing. If this antenna ring is not
mounted properly around the ignition lock cylinder housing, communication problems between the SKREEM and the transponder may arise. These
communication problems will result in Sentry Key transponder-related faults.
The SKREEM also serves as the Remote Keyless Entry (RKE) RF receiver and may receive RF inputs either directly through an internal antenna from
the RKE key fob transmitter or, on vehicles equipped with an optional remote start system, indirectly through the external remote start antenna module.
See: Body and Frame/Locks/Power Locks/Description and Operation/Power Locks - Description. The SKREEM communicates over the Controller Area
Network (CAN) data bus with the ElectroMechanical Instrument Cluster (EMIC) (also known as the Cab Compartment Node/CCN), the Powertrain
Control Module (PCM), or the diagnostic scan tool.
The SKREEM and the PCM both use software that includes a rolling code algorithm strategy, which helps to reduce the possibility of unauthorized
Sentry Key Immobilizer System (SKIS) disarming. The rolling code algorithm ensures security by preventing an override of the SKIS through the
unauthorized substitution of the SKREEM or the PCM. However, the use of this strategy also means that replacement of either the SKREEM or the PCM
units will require a system initialization procedure to restore system operation.
The SKREEM retains in memory the ID numbers of any Sentry Key transponder that is programmed into it. A maximum of eight Sentry Key
transponders can be programmed into the SKREEM. For added system security, each SKREEM is programmed with a unique Secret Key code. This
code is stored in memory, sent over the CAN data bus to the PCM, and is encoded to the transponder of every Sentry Key that is programmed into the
SKREEM. Therefore, the Secret Key code is a common element that is found in every component of the SKIS.
Another security code, called a PIN, is used to gain access to the SKREEM Secured Access Mode. The Secured Access Mode is required during service
to perform the SKIS initialization and Sentry Key transponder programming procedures. The SKREEM also stores the Vehicle Identification Number
(VIN) in its memory, which it learns through a CAN data bus message from the PCM during SKIS initialization.
In the event that a SKREEM replacement is required, the Secret Key code can be transferred to the new SKREEM from the PCM using the diagnostic
scan tool and the SKIS initialization procedure. Proper completion of the SKIS initialization will allow the existing Sentry Keys to be programmed into
the new SKREEM so that new keys will not be required. In the event that the original Secret Key code cannot be recovered, SKREEM replacement will
also require new Sentry Keys. The diagnostic scan tool will alert the technician during the SKIS initialization procedure if new Sentry Keys are required.
When the ignition switch is turned to the ON position, the SKREEM transmits an RF signal to excite the transponder in the ignition key. The SKREEM
then waits for an RF signal response from the transponder. If the response received identifies the key as valid, the SKREEM sends an electronic valid
key message to the PCM over the CAN data bus. If the response received identifies the key as invalid or if no response is received from the key
transponder, the SKREEM sends an invalid key message to the PCM. The PCM will enable or disable engine operation based upon the status of the
SKREEM messages. It is important to note that the default condition in the PCM is an invalid key; therefore, if no message is received from the
SKREEM by the PCM, the engine will be disabled and the vehicle immobilized after two seconds of running.
The SKREEM also sends electronic security indicator request messages to the EMIC over the CAN data bus to tell the EMIC how to operate the
security indicator. The security indicator request message from the SKREEM tells the EMIC to turn the indicator ON for about three seconds each time
the ignition switch is turned to the ON position as a bulb test. After completion of the bulb test, the SKREEM sends security indicator request messages
to the EMIC to turn the indicator OFF, turn the indicator ON, or to flash the indicator ON and OFF. If the security indicator flashes or stays ON solid
after the bulb test, it signifies a SKIS fault. If the SKREEM detects a system malfunction or if the SKIS has become ineffective, the security indicator
will stay ON solid. If the SKREEM detects an invalid key or if a key transponder-related fault exists, the security indicator will flash. If the vehicle is
equipped with the Customer Learn transponder programming feature, the SKREEM will also send messages to the EMIC to flash the security indicator
whenever the Customer Learn programming mode is being utilized. . See: Accessories and Optional Equipment/Antitheft and Alarm Systems/Service
The SKIS performs a self-test each time the ignition switch is turned to the ON position, and will store fault information in the form of a Diagnostic
Trouble Code (DTC) in SKREEM memory if a system malfunction is detected. The hard wired circuits of the SKREEM may be diagnosed using
conventional diagnostic tools and procedures. Refer to the appropriate wiring information. However, conventional diagnostic methods will not prove
conclusive in the diagnosis of the SKREEM or the electronic controls or communication between other modules and devices that provide some features
of the SKIS. The most reliable, efficient, and accurate means to diagnose the SKREEM or the electronic controls and communication related to
SKREEM operation requires the use of a diagnostic scan tool. Refer to the appropriate diagnostic information.