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Conversion Vans



  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    I have the 2001 Savana 2500 passenger van with 5.7 L and my oil pressure gauge goes up and down as well. It has only 340 miles on it, still not broken in.

    Unfortunatley the U.S uses PSI to indicate oil pressure, while Canada uses KPa(Kilapascals) metric is really helping us now? Still, I find the same characteristic of the needle moving up and down. Mine rests almost halfway between 275 and 550KPa while driving around 40mph and it does change with engine speed, being lower at a red light.

    I assume we have the same OWNERS try checking page 2-64. It states oil pressure may vary with engine speed, outside temperature and oil viscosity.

    My CHILTON MANUAL shows how to perform a oil pressure test:
    1.Start the engine and allow it to idle.
    2. Check the oil pressure reading when cold and record the number. You may need to run the engine at a specified rpm (check specifications chart. For 5.0 and 5.7L engines for 1997 it is 18PSI@2000RPM).
    3. Run the engine until normal operating temperature is reached (upper radiator hose will feel warm).
    4. Check the oil pressure reading again with the engine hot and record the number. Turn the engine OFF.
    5.Compare your hot oil pressure reading to that given in the chart. If the reading is low, check the cold pressure reading against the chart. If the cold pressure is well above the specification, and the hot reading was lower than the specification, you may have the wrong viscosity oil in the engine. Change the oil, making sure to use the proper grade and quantity, then repeat the test.
    Low oil pressure readings could be attributred to internal component wear, pump related problems, a low oil level, or oil viscosity that is too low. High oil pressure readings could be caused by an overfilled crankcase, too high of an oil viscosity or a fualty pressure relief valve.

    If your still not feeling confident, then see the dealer where you purchased the vehicle and ask to test drive another vehicle...then compare for yourself.

    Hope this helped.
  • dalelynndalelynn Posts: 28
    I really appreciate all your thoughts on the oil pressure situation. To be on the safe side I am taking it back to the dealer to check out. Especially since there were two other "little" problems in the first week, like the battery wasn't hooked on tight and could have caused a fire and the pinstriping was pulled off on one side... Nothing like these types of problems to really take the wind out of your sale and burst the balloon of joy upon getting new wheels!
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    I converted the Kilopascals for my Canadian vehicle and at idle (vehicle fully at temp) it worked out to 17.2PSI, although the test calls for 2000RPM which is higher then the idle point. I am safely within the recommended level.

    What is important for you is that this was my lowest reading (17.2PSI at idle) and while driving it went up and down as I accelerated. My gauge varied about 3/4" in fluctuations.

    I would not just trust the mechanics, instead I would ask to test drive another identical vehicle to confirm it a 3rd time. Mine can be considered #2. The reason I say this is that the mechanic can not be fully familiar with every vehicle they sell regarding minor differences in behaviour.
    For example, the transmission specialist felt my tranny had major troubles when I returned it and complained of a loud noise (after just leaving the lot for the first time). Turned out when the shop supervisor stepped in that it was just the fan clutch and normal. This mechanic was not fully familiar himself. Nothing like test driving another vehicle to set your mind at ease, that's what I did.

    One other thing, if there was a pressure problem, guranteed the computer would say something with a CHECK ENGINE WARNING.

    Good luck!
  • I have come accross a nifty plastic "box" which is attached onto a metal plate which in turn slips into an installed trailer hitch. They look like they would be fine for my problem of too much stuff in my Ram 1500 conversion. Camping gear would go into this box.
    Anyone had experince with these? Safe? Robust? I know that some telescop and swing out of the way of the rear doors. Does it really work? Your help is much appreciated for our trip across the USA!!

    THanks and happy trails.
  • vivhowardvivhoward Posts: 2
    Has any one experienced their roof tops coming completely off? We were on I-295 driving to Norfolk, VA, when we heard this rumbling noise. We pulled over to find out the cause. We thought a tire had blew. This passer-by stopped and said "did you know that your roof blew off about 500 feet back? I had to swerve to miss it". The entire hard covering was gone. the headliner and the accesories were still in place. It was raining cats and dogs. We were an hour and half away from home. We turned around and went back home, but the interior was soaked. We own a 96 chevy express, conversion by Quality coaches.
  • harrys2harrys2 Posts: 3
    I am trying to decide on which company's chassis to purchase. Which vehicle has the most reliable powertrain. I have heard good things about Chevy's ride, Dodge's 318 and not much either way about Ford. I definitely want an 8 cyl engine. I am tall so would like the most legroom possible in the driver's position. I owned an 1986 6 cyl Dodge B150 and never had any problems with it. Every Dodge minivan I have owned had transmission problems, how are the truck transmissions? What should I pay for a 1995 Dodge B250 MarkIII hightop w/leather, with 60000 miles? I am considering buying one. What is the safety of these vans? Thanks for any help.
  • mrnimmomrnimmo Posts: 271
    Parts may be a problem. But the vans may be deals.
  • mike346mike346 Posts: 5
    According to the tow rating chart at, the 2000 Dodge Ram Van 1500 with the 5.2 and 3.55:1 axle can tow up to 11,500lbs. Has anyone ever tried to pull that much? I'm currently driving a '96 Savana with a 5.7 and it was really struggling to pull an empty 28' Travel Trailer (approx 4500lbs).
  • mike43ncmike43nc Posts: 13
    for the rear captains chairs in my 1994 Chevy Mark III. They allow you to remove or install the seat mounting bolts from inside the van without needing to hold the nut underneath. I had a set on my last van, but did not think to save them before I sold it. I think the mounting bolt sets came from JC Whitney, but they no longer carry them. Anyone seen a source of these?
  • I'm wondering if Universal is still a conversion company, do they still exist? I'm looking at buying a usd van that was converted by Universal, and it may need a new fender flare. Can that be obtained?
    Does anyone know if converting a van like a 1999 E-150 to a lo-top conversion, changes the gas mileage any?
  • mrnimmomrnimmo Posts: 271
    and is out of business. Parts are available, see the page

  • brianw8brianw8 Posts: 1
    I,m looking at a 1999 dodge 1500 with a regency conversion package and 27,000 miles. What is a fair price for this van. Does anyone have any comments about regency, good or bad? What should a 1500 dodge van with a basic conversion package go for? How about a 2500? I'm really interested in finding one, but, most car websites (including this one, unless i missed it) don't have sections for conversion vans. Thanks for your help.
  • Had E150 Ford Conversion 1999. Had brake done 8/5/01 pm husband took to work 8/6/01 am Had to stop on FWY no Brakes Insurance Investagating. Suspected something odd with the way brakes went bad prior to repair, Did our mechanic make a mistake or has anyone else had problems with their brakes. Friend said she heard Ford may have defective brake system. Has anyone else heard about this. PLEASE LET ME KNOW. by the way my husband was ok praise God!
  • DarkManXR2 is my sons screen name, my screen name is e-mail me if you have any info or post here. Thank you
  • xfilesxfiles Posts: 132
    Well, someone worked on those brakes, and the next day you have an accident. The probability sure is that the mechanic caused the problem, and not the mfr. The mechanic may have failed to tighten down a brake fluid bleeder valve on the brakes, or he didn't tighten down one of the brake lines. The fact that it happened the very next day is a strong reason to point a finger at the mechanic in my opinion. A slow leak could have drained the reserve brake fluid container slowly, and once you reach the lower limit your suddenly in trouble. So you were okay the day of the brake job, but next morning your in trouble with low fluid.

    Good luck.
  • My only on going problem is the Rear Axle Noise and tire wear problems.
    High top w/roof air/cond and on board gas generator. This extra high 8'1/2" may be my problems source.
    Any comments about my problems would help PLEASE! Constructive Please?
  • Hello . . .

    I am looking at an Eclipse Conversion Van . . . hi-top, TV/VCP, leather, power sofabed, etc. Chassis is a Ford E-150 with the 5.4L Triton V-8. Dealer wants $33,700 + processing + taxes & tags.

    First, how good is the quality of Eclipse? Second, is the asking price a good deal?

    Thanks all
  • jc1973jc1973 Posts: 63
  • jboaterjboater Posts: 199
    I don't have any 1st hand experience. It seems to me that there have been numerous positive posts here at Edmund's. You might want to did through old posts and archives.
This discussion has been closed.