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Chrysler Sebring Problems and Solutions



  • batesnowbatesnow Posts: 2
    I have just over 50K miles on my car (2000 Sebring Conv Limited, bought new). Last week it began backfiring. I took it into the dealership this morning and they say I need new plugs and wires. Platinum plugs $190 and wiring about $180. The manual says I should get to 75k miles before replacing. The dealership said something else must have been wrong at one time and screwed the plugs and wires up. Does this sound common to anyone else?
  • I own a 2003 Sebring Sedan LX 4 cyl with 23,000 miles. Has anyone noticed rough idle? It's not real bad, just a constant vibration felt on the steering wheel. Dealer says it's normal, but I never noticed it until the weather got cold. Get's a little smoother with warmer temps, but never seems to go away. Any suggestions appreciated.
  • tr13tr13 Posts: 10
    Has anyone else experienced this problem? When I put my car into reverse in the morning it is kind of hard to do and it make a metal on metal sound. My car is garaged and I live in Southern California so it is not a cold climate issue. Please advise.
  • I kept checking back here for the answer but there was never a response. So (reluctantly) I searched elsewhere and sure enough Google provided for. I haven't tried it yet but a gentleman in TX figured it out and thoughtfully, put the step-by-step instructions with very helpful pictures on his personal website. Below are his instructions and here is the direct link:
    Please keep in mind his references to images are to those on his site.


    SYMPTOMS: Your tachometer and odometer are intermittent. They go on and off randomly, most noticeably with temperature changes.

    THE PROBLEM: The circuit board on the instrument cluster has 3 power resistors (I think two are 2-watt and one is 1-watt) that are insufficiently heatsinked. As a result, the low-temperature solder that is used during the manufacture of the circuit board "goes cold" (cold solder joints) over time as the components heat up and cool down.

    I personally think that they have two problems here. One is insufficient heat sinking of power dissipating components. The second is that the use of low temperature solder during the flow solder process, combined with the additional heat, causes the solder to get close enough to its melting point that it actually begins to melt. Over time the solder joints go cold.

    I understand that Chrysler has a redesigned circuit board that fixes this problem. Too bad they didn't have a bunch of cockpit fires that would have caused them to create a recall (for those of us not burned to death) that would have replaced it for free. Now that was an odd thought...on to the repair procedure.


    Be sure to check to see if you have any dash lights that are out. You'll want to get some bulbs and replace them while you're in the dash.

    Make sure you have a set of Torx screwdrivers. Go to Wal-mart and pick up a set for a few dollars. You'll be glad you did.

    Send me an email and let me know if this helped or what I can do to improve it!
    1. Remove the fuse cover.
    2. Remove the screw (sorry for the focus problem).
    3. Remove the trim bezel by grabbing the inside edges near the tab locations and pulling straight forward. Don't bend it and break it! Check out the next pic to see where the tabs are located.
    4. Here's what the back of the bezel looks like, so you know what you're up against. There are 5 clips on the tabs.
    5. Now you can see the screws you need to remove (out of focus, again).
    6. With the steering wheel lowered pull straight out on the dash assembly. I don't have a picture of me doing this, because I couldn't do it and take the picture. However, I can show you the "clippy tabs" and the connectors that you need to disconnect to get it all the way out. This picture is the back of the dash showing the connector for the computer gauge (if you have one). As I remember, most of the connectors have a little tab or slide lock that you have to pry (gently) on to get them loose.
    7. Here's the instrument cluster before removing the 4 screws that hold it in place. There are two connectors on the back of the cluster that you will have to disconnect, prior to its removal.
    8. The cable harness is held to a cardboard backing with the cable tie/clamp. Instead of cutting this loose, get your torx screwdriver out and remove the silver screws holding the cardboard backing in place. This will allow you to remove the instrument cluster. Also, note there are two connectors on the back of the cluster. One is red (disconnected) and one is blue (still connected at the bottom of the picture). Disregard the Fortune and Nortel marketing in the background.
    9. Now you should have the instrument cluster removed and you can put it on the towel of your choice to protect your wife's table! Flip it over and let's get to work!
    10. Okay, now time to start warming up the soldering iron. Here are the locations of the torx screws that you need to remove. Also, I've indicted the location of the power resistors whose solder joints you will need to touch up. After removing the screws, you'll have to pull the circuit board loose from the instruments. They "plug in" to the circuit board. You can see the pins of the sticking through the board into their respective sockets. It isn't difficult, but you don't want to inadvertently flex the board and break anything. I didn't unplug the connector at the bottom, as I merely folded the circuit board over to work on the solder joints.
    11. Here are the solder joints that you need to touch up. Be sure and use some good electrical quality, rosin core solder...don't use acid core solder that is for plumbing! If you don't have any soldering skills, check out this link and practice before working on your circuit board. You'll want to clean up your soldering (flux removal) with some alcohol, after you're done. We used to use some really good chemicals for cleaning up flux in the past, but I don't think most of them are considered environmentally friendly, anymore.
    12. Now, as they say in the shop manual, "to install, reverse the above procedure."

    Good luck and please thank Russell as well as letting the Edmunds folks know how your repair went.

    --1997 Sebring JX with 162,634 miles last time odometer was on (yesterday). Still running strong !!!!! THE MOST reliable car I've ever had the pleasure of owning !!!!!!
  • ceadsceads Posts: 24
    I have a sound that sounds like a cupped out front tire, I can feel it in the wheel and hear it above 30 MPH and up .When i went to get my tires balanced .I was told that my tire looked like it had a flat spot on it VERY very small Is this caused my poor struts??Anyone help? Im going to replace the struts on the front .to see if it would help, The tires have only about 4K them . I bought the car from a friend and had heard it before when he had other tires on it. WHAT WOULD CAUSE THIS ?? email me if you want

  • goodyrlgoodyrl Posts: 83
    Does anyone know where I can find a right rear tail light for a 96 Sebring Convertible. The Chrysler Dealer wants a mint :(
  • slf144slf144 Posts: 1
    I purchased my 99 limited convertible new and have enjoyed the look and feel of the car. BUT the problems are growing. My Sebring has 28,000 miles on it and was not driven the first two winters I owned it. So far I have had my CD changer replaced - this was warranty. My ignition switch was replaced - not warranty. Last week my transmission speed sensor needed replaced and this week I took my car to the tire shop and they tell me my tire will not hold air because there is a hole rusted in my $400 wheel. Has anyone heard of this problem with the wheels.
  • tim1tim1 Posts: 1
    I've had my Sebring into the local dealer numerous times starting early in the warranty. The vehicle now has only about 30,000 KM on it. It started with a clunking noise in the right front end as I passed over sewer holes. They said it was a control arm bushing which they changed. Little better but still there. Took it back and they replaced another bushing. Still there and I took it back. Changed the lower control arm. Still there but not as bad, took it back again. Changed upper control arm. Better but still clunking. Took it back. Replaced front strut......problem gone. NOW I have a creaking noise in the front end when I'm braking and turning. Sounds like a bushing that's binding. Dealership says it's normal sounds and they all do it. I say, "You say it's normal but I say it was never there until you fixed my front end". Chrysler Rep to listen to it. Odometer and internal lights, gauge backlighting, etc. would intermittently go out and flicker. Replaced turn signal lever [non-permissible content removed]'y. Never has happened again. Had loud growling noise coming from front end while travelling at 50 km/h (30 mph). Could hardly talk due to the loud interior noise. Dealer found front wheel bearing gone bad and replaced. Now quiet.
      My opinion,,, if you're going to buy a car, skip the Sebring. While it's a great car to drive, the problems don't out-weigh the good. Spends more time in the shop than on the road.
  • lmdjrx4lmdjrx4 Posts: 1
    I leased a 01 LXI Convertible in 2001 and while I have had some problems, I love the car. I would love to get another one but really can't afford one with the same level of "nice-ities" and don't want a base model. I could buyout my lease but I am concerned with all the issues I have read on the message board. I have not had any tranny problems or creaking, etc. I had a leak and it was fixed, I had a dash and radio problem, it was fixed, I had a rear defogger problem, it has been fixed. Mechanically it has been problem free. (SO FAR) What to do, what to do???
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    Here's a post from another forum about the front end steering noise. I have tried nothing yet, but will try this or the Chrylser procedure soon. What do folks think about using this fluid veruse the Chrysler fulid?

    I also had a noise similar to what you described on right hand turns. My was solved by replacing the power steering fluid. I used a turkey baster to remove as much fluid as possible from the reservoir, refilled, drove for about 10-15 minutes to circulate the new fluid, and did a another round of remove and refill. My noise went
    away. Note I used ATF+4 trans fluid; it states on the bottle that it is recommended for power steering use (I have used it in my '93 Intrepid, '97 JX and '99 Ram 1500).

    Note it must be ATF+4, no other trans fluid will work.
  • goggagogga Posts: 6
    The Chrysler fluid I used (Part # 5013457-AA) is also ATF+4 trans fluid. Same thing..

  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    thanks, gogga
  • kcrnmalekcrnmale Posts: 47
    The rear shoulder belt on my 1999 Jxi doesn't "lock" when I pull it forward. It only locks during a crash. The manual says this is OK because the lap belt portion is tight. I don't exactly feel comfortable about this. Any else want to comment?
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,020
    While you're waiting for other owners to reply, here's an article concerning child seat safety.

    Child Safety Seat Primer

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email,, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • tony5251tony5251 Posts: 1
    I have an 01- 4cyl sebring that has a gas gauge that constantly swings from "empty" & back to its proper level. The biggest problem is that it "chimes" every time it hits "E". The dealer says its probably a bad sensor ($300). I would be happy just turning off the chime! Can anyone give me some direction on if it can be done & how?
  • tommvtommv Posts: 2
    I'm in the market for a Sebring Convertible, and I've been looking for a tan top. The LXI lease returns w/ red ext. generally come w/ a black top.
    So I'd like to hear from "tan top" and "black top" owners about the relative amount of heat that seems to be passed through to the inside of the convertible. I hope the air conditioning makes this an irrelevant concern.
  • Hello everyone, I'm new to the board and to owning a 2001 Sebring LX (I bought it yeserday). Though I feel he car is performing well, I do have a whinning noise while I excelerate. The dealer looked at it and said it was the transfer gears and there is no problem, it just makes that noise. Anyone else run into this? It is a little annoying but not terrible. Thanx.
  • shtik80shtik80 Posts: 3
  • The black top will definitely make it hotter, if you live in a warm climate. We got the dark green with the taupe top and the taupe interior and it still gets hot so the black will definitely will draw some intense heat. We carry some small towels that we can drape over the seats when its been sitting out on the 100 degree sun.
  • My "04 Limited does the same and it seems to be inherent to the tranny. have 6300 miles and no problems so far except replacing the noisy motor for the top.
    Later, Joe
This discussion has been closed.