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Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Grand Caravan 2005+

1515254565768

Comments

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Engine break-in is a wierd thing to say the very least. On my last two BMWs (both with the I6 engine) I noticed very little change (if any at all) beyond 2,000 miles, however, for both of our 3.8 liter there were very noticable gains in both performance and fuel economy to beyond the 20,000 mile mark.

    Regarding your rings, my bet is that the compression rings are fully seated and there is nothing more that you can do with them shy of pulling the motor and rebuilding it (not that I'm suggesting that, it sounds like they're doing just fine). When I was mentioning your rings earlier it was in reference to your oil rings, and they don't "seat" in the conventional sense. They are however very suceptible to getting cruded up, and that means that they aren't scavenging the oil off the cylinder wall as effectively as they should.

    Given the relatively frequent oil changes that your van has had I'd be a little surprised if you had an oil ring problem, in spite of the Quaker State oil that has been used. Then again, maybe that stuff really is that bad.

    To bring this discussion full circle, I simply don't think you have anything to worry about with regards to your oil consumption. My bet is that if you keep your van properly maintained, you'll see well beyond the north side of 100,000 miles as still won't see your oil consumption drop to the point of concern (i.e. 1 quart per 1,000 miles).

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • Shipo & Micweb - thanks for all your thoughts & discussion on these subjects - enlightening as well as fun! Regards, Frogger123
  • I found out that extra bins for the overhead rail system are indeed $140 (yes 140) PER BIN...Vans equiped with the system have room for 2 or 3 more (as noted in sales literature)..SO $280, or $420 EEEEEEEEK

    Where can I find a wreck?
    Tony
  • The specifications are what is important when it comes to engine oil......in other words, the letters on the can that tell what service it is rated for. The brand is not important. For years I have used the Walmart house brand, "Super Tech", with very good results. Before the Walmarts arrived I used various brands, mostly Sears. I generally run cars about 160,000 miles or so before buying a new one. Just make sure you use an oil that has an American Petroleum Institute seal on the label or top, and it should have a rating of SM. That is the API's top rating for gasoline engine oils. If it says "SM" and has the API mark it meets the DaimlerChrysler MS6395 specification. The can may also have some lesser ratings, like SL or SJ, but as long as it has the SM you are safe. By the way, if you see a service rating starting with c, like CI, CH or CJ, that is for diesel engines.
  • By the way, at 141,000 miles, my 98 Astro Van is now getting the best fuel mileage ever......19 to 20 mpg with mostly highway driving. Nothing to brag about, and I'm hoping to beat that by three or four miles with my new SXT. My first two tanks averaged 22 mpg, but I'm expecting improvement as the engine loosens up.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    I have a 2005 DGC and it isn't using any oil. Doesn't the cap on your oil dipstick tell you to use 5W20?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "My first two tanks averaged 22 mpg, but I'm expecting improvement as the engine loosens up."

    Both of our DGCs showed noticable power and mileage improvements through 20,000 miles where things pretty much leveled off. That having been said, with 106K on one van and 58K on the other, both seem to have marginally improved since then. I say "seem to" simply because a half of a mile per gallon is hard to prove given all of the other factors that could be in play here. At this point, our 1998 3.8 is able to do about 24 mpg on the highway and our 2003 3.8 is more like 26. Of course a few weeks ago we had some "Hurricane force winds" one evening, and on that drive home I got 11 mpg at a steady 65 from the 1998 (I knew it would be bad so I reset the OBC so I could see just how bad). The good news is that the next morning, even though the winds had died down to a nice 20-30 knot breeze, I managed to get 28 mpg for that same 40 mile commute back to work. ;-)

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • Currently doing about 17.5 MPG, 06 SXT 3.8L ....
    2200 miles though on her...I do hope it edges up to 19+ as it brakes in
    Tony
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    We picked up our brand spankin' new 1998 3.8 liter DGC one evening in early summer of that year and promptly left for a 600 mile trip the next morning. During that trip it averaged a little less than 18 mpg, I was dissappointed to say the least. That having been said, as you know from my previous post(s), that same van is now getting more like 24 mpg on the highway. I have no doubt that your van will loosen up over the next several thousand miles and your mileage will substantially improve.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Hmmm, I like it, so does Mrs. Shipo... She'll take hers with a Hemi and a 6-Speed manual. Please.

    Gee, wouldn't that be fun to have a Hemi 6-Speed Caravan and a Hemi 6-Speed Challenger. ;-)

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • dennisctcdennisctc Posts: 1,168
    WOW!!! if that the 2008!!! WOW!!!
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    Not really sure, but it very well could be. Notice the European or Australian plates?
  • The oil cap on the valve cover does state to use 5W20 however, the owners manual states to use 5W30 in the 3.8L engine. I choose to use 5W30. The dealer uses 10W30 and the original owner took the van to dealer for oil changes. Perhaps this is why I am consuming a quart of oil in 3000 miles. Perhaps the engine should have been broken in with 5W20 or 5W30 oil. Good luck with your van marine2!
  • I got my DGC when it had 15,400 miles on it so I cannot comment on the "after break-in" mileage. In addition, my mileage has remained stable & I cannot say it has improved. I currently have 24,000 miles on the van. Last summer when my 05 SXT 3.8L had 16,000 on it we took a trip from Montana to Sante Fe, NM. We averaged anywhere from 24 - 27 MPG. I find hills (especially if tranny downshifts), speed (above 70 MPH) & wind can really cut mileage. I am very pleased to say the least on my DGC's mileage. Even on winter gas in Montana I can average up to 22 - 24 MPG on the highway. On a fairly straight stretch driving 60 - 65 MPH at around 6,000 ft. in New Mexico, I averaged 30 - 31 MPG according to the computer. I have checked the computer by checking my mileage the old way. In town, I have been averaging 17 - 18 MPG. Again, I am pleased with the DGC's mileage.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    Chrysler must have changed the manual sometime during the year frogger. On page 422 of mine,it says to use 5W20 on the 3.8 and 5W30 on the 2.4.

    I was quite concerned using that light weight of oil in my van as I live in Phoenix and it can get up 120 in the summer. But the service tech said it was ok. Our 2004 Civic also says to use 5W20.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    WOW....I may have to trade my 2006 Sienna in on another Chrysler in a couple of years... Chrysler has THE most attractive exterior minivan styling. Sadly, the 2006 GC SXT interior is not as attractive as my lower priced 2002 T&C LX and some nice features of my 2002 T&C LX were deleted. Chrysler needs to add back all the nice interior features that have been deleted in the past few years.
    In contrast, my 2006 Sienna LE has a VERY attractive interior but the exterior styling is NOT as attractive as DC minivans. The HVAC and stereo controls on the Sienna are NOT as user friendly as those on my 2002 T&C LX. I hope my 2006 Sienna is as reliable in 4 years as is my 2002 T&C. :blush: :blush:
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    The 5-20 oil spec was co-developed by Ford, Honda, Exxon-Mobil, and Conoco Philips. Conoco makes the 5-20 oil for Motorcraft, Ford's parts division. Originally Motorcraft was sold as a "regular" dino oil, later the label was upgraded so they are ALL "synthetic blend." (The formula never changed, Motorcraft just decided to take more credit for the superior formula they had from the get-go.) Reportedly the Motorcraft is 60% Group III oil and 40% Group II oil; both group II and III are hydrocracked (catalytic converter processed, not solvent refined), while regular dino oil is just solvent processed. So in a lot of ways you are better off with a 5-20 oil, than with one of the "weaker" 5-30 oils; the weight is only part of the picture, and the robustness of the 5-20 formulation makes up for the slightly lower viscosity.

    General consensus is that the specification for 5-20 is impossible to meet, unless the oil is mostly synthetic. General consensus is that 5-20 oil is designed to fall at the high end of permissible weight for a 20 weight, not that far from the bottom end of 30 weight oils. Most 5-20 formulations are supposed to be very resistant to shearing and loss of viscoscity, since the formulations use a lot of high viscoscity index synthetic base stock. So, once again, the the debate between the "20" and "30" is not so easy to resolve.

    However, an extreme ambient temperature such as the 120 degree summer is certainly a factor in choosing oils. My preference if I were in Phoenix would be to play it safe and use Mobil 1 5-20 which is a full synthetic, or even Mobil 1 5-30 full synthetic. Each are very well engineered, and we all know that the 5-20 spec if there more to save gas than save engines, and that the 3.8 WILL still take 5-30 oil. I would try to get your dealer's ok; when Ford owners faced this dilemma several years back, the Ford customer service line told customers they could run any oil approved by their dealer without risking voiding the warranty.

    Alternatively, do 3,000 mile oil changes instead of 6,000 mile changes. 3,000 mile changes are pushed very hard by the current (2006) owner's manual.
  • I reviewed my 2005 DGC owners manual again and nothing is said about 5W20. It states under viscosity recommendations that both the 3.3L & 3.8L are to use 5W30. Perhaps the 5W20 recommendation came at a later date in 2005 with an updated manual.

    If an engine is consuming oil, I would think that a lighter weight oil might pass through easier.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    An important point to remember is that those oils are both 5 Weight oils. True, the 5W-20 theoretically thins out less than does 5W-30 when hot, but they are both still 5W oils. A couple of posts back made an interesting point about the differences in the composition of the two oils, and to me at least, the difference didn't sound all that great.

    Question: Which is thinner, 0W-40 or 5W-30?
    Answer: 0W-40

    Frogger123, if you want to put a REAL oil in your van, you might want to consider Mobil 1 0W-30 or even 0W-40 (a markedly better oil than even the 0W-30).

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
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