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Dodge/Plymouth/Chrysler Minivan Problems & Solutions



  • dcaterdcater Posts: 1
    Let the dealer tackle this as it should be done completely free of charge. It is most likely the clockspring which was recalled last year. Your dealer should know all about it. I had this same problem on my 98.
  • chuckgchuckg Posts: 69
    I'll bet you're happy to get this fixed. Nothing to it. :D

    Thanks for reporting back.
  • Did you ever find the cause of this? My 2003 Grand Caravan had just started doing this when it rains.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    It is probably your serpentine belt that drives all the accessories. Replace the belt and likely it will go away. Fairly easy do it yourself project if you are mechanically inclined. Belt costs about $25 aftermarket at NAPA.

    It could also be related to the tensioner or tensioner pulley bearings, but I would change the belt first. I replaced the belt once so far on our 1996 Caravan, and also later on replaced the tensioner pulley as the bearings in that pulley started to squeal a couple years ago. I used an aftermarket pulley and replaced it myself.

    The squeal related to damp conditions probably means your serpentine belt is getting cracked and dried out and is slipping somewhat when wet.
  • 97vanowner97vanowner Posts: 11
    Hi Sylvia: Sorry about the e-mail request, but I was somewhat desperate--and had a scheduled appointment with the dealer since the "ghost activity" with the wipers continued AFTER I had paid $741.39 to get the wipers fixed. To bring you up to date, After replacing the BCM (body control module) the first time around--which did restart the wipers, yesterday they installed a new multi-function switch to fix the "ghosting" problem - another $151.00. Should it cost $892.00 to simply get the windshield wipers fixed? I don't think so. I would like to hear from anyone else as to similar experiences. I talked to a service person at the lawn mower repair place as I picked up my mower today and she says her Caravan is doing the same "ghosting" thing that my van did for 60,000 before it finally completely died. She has 68,000 on her van. I suggested thinking about planning to trade. Anyone else have any ideas? Thanks.
  • fepfep Posts: 3
    My 96 Dodge Caravan has nearly 90K miles. On both my long trips this winter the vehicle lost power after crusing at 65 -70 MPH for about 2 hours. The "check engine soon" light would flash and than stay on as I coasted to the side of the road and stalled. One time it cleared immediately and I was able to travel side roads for an hour before it reoccured. The other time it reoccured nearly a dozen times going anywhere from 100 yards to 2 miles at each event. Both trips resulted in no work being done because after letting it sit for an evening it would run fine the next morning. Also the "Check engine soon light" was cleared after finding the code to read "Random Misfire." Is it possible for a over heated fuel pump to prevent the gas flow and the "check engine soon" light to come on? This is what the mechanic told me but that would mean that if a Caravan were to run out of gas the "Check engine soon" light would also go on. That doesn't sound right? It's been running great for nearly 3 months now but I haven't taken any long trips. Any ideas?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Okay, it seems that our 1998 GC Sport 3.8 is having its third unscheduled component failure (the first was the battery and the second was the driver's door switch for the interior lights). The overhead temperature display is, ummm, erratic to say the least. This afternoon for instance, I got in the van with my two kids and the display showed -40, which the kids thought was rather hilarious as we were in the low seventies at the time. It stayed at -40 for maybe a mile then went to -5, no wait, 37, 105, -27, 55, 59, 51, 58, -40, all in the next mile. Me thinks it's broke.

    I've never heard of this problem before. Is it common? Is the sending unit the likely culprit? If it is, where is said sending unit mounted? Is there a simple "Hold the A/C button while pushing the rear wiper and the rear defogger button together 47 times with one hand while scratching your nose with your other hand" type of reset command?

    Thanks in advance.

    Best Regards,

    I'm not actually sure that I even want to fix this, ummm, errr, entertainment feature. My kids seem to actually enjoy shouting out the current OAT as it goes through its improbable series of displays. Either that or they bet each other what the REAL OAT is. ;-)
  • fishing1000fishing1000 Posts: 38
    how much oil did your van burn every 1500 miles? How much did the new head gasket cost? Did you replace it by yourself? Thanks!
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,286
    Sounds like that, or its wiring is the culprit. The probe sensor is mounted behind the grill, off the center support. You will need to take the front bumper cover off to be able to trace the wiring harness. The harness has a connector that can be poorly placed and fatigue out the wires within. A replacement sensor is not too expensive if the wiring is not the problem.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Thanks, I'll check it out and report back. ;-)

    Best Regards,
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564

    You can always check outside temperature the old fashioned way, stick your arm out the window.

    This also has the added benefit of telling you other data. If it is raining, it will come back wet. If snowing, it will come in white. If you are driving too close to oncoming traffic, it may not come back in at all!
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Thanks, got a good laugh out of that. ;-)

    Best Regards,
  • cct2cct2 Posts: 1
    Hey fep. I still have my 96 T&C that had the exact same problems a few years back. After a few unsuccessful dealers misdiagnosed the problem, it was determined that it was - in fact the fuel pump (located humorously within the fuel tank) that would overheat as the gas level went below the pump (half a tank). The pump apparently as it fails, overheats and ironically - the gasoline (acting as a coolant) keeps the pump cool until the gas level drops below the pump. Cost to repair was about $500.
  • chubb2ichubb2i Posts: 3
    Thanks for input. I have not had a problem since replacing the Cam Position Sensor a couple of weeks ago, but I have had it go for several weeks without acting up. then start giving trouble again, so I don't know if problem is solved or not. I will probably get a TCM next time at junkyard.
  • awsomeawsome Posts: 2
    I have this problem also. I bought a replacement switch module and it did not fix the problem. Did you find out what the problem was?
  • jwheeler1jwheeler1 Posts: 6
    I do not have the stalling problem but I'm getting a constant cylinder misfire code for cylinder six,cylinder 1 and multiple missfires.I have replaced and cleaned the o-rings on the fuel injectors to my 98 voyager.I have replaced both oxgen sensors and the map sensor,and the pcv valve.Along with new plugs,distributor,wires and the vfan still keeps bringing up this code.I can't get through Conneticutt emissions because of this light.Anyone with Idea's please write. THankyou. J.W.
  • jwheeler1jwheeler1 Posts: 6
    This occurs when the oil is not yet into the block during cold starts.Also check your oil level.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Which V6, 3.0, 3.3, or 3.8?
  • jwheeler1jwheeler1 Posts: 6
    The newer vans have this problem I'm told with the o-rings on the fuel filler tube to the fuel injectors and the o-rings between the fuel injectors and the injection manifold (they rot,crack,corrode)They may need to be replaced.Some owners have had fires!
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