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Dodge Caravan Maintainance schedule

I keep hearing about a maintainance schedule. Well I bought my '01 Grand Caravan used and never received the schedule. Today I took it in for a hose replacement to my power steering, and the service advisor begins to tell me that at 68,000 miles I need my radiator flushed, spark plugs changed, throttle body cleaned, the power steering fluid changed, etc. It was up to over $1,000 which I don't have. Are these things really necessary? The van is running fine. Every time I take it in for one thing, they find a half dozen other things I need done.
Also, can I have my radiator flushed and refilled at like say a Firestone, whcih is much cheaper, or does Chrysler vehicles require a certain brand?
Thanks for any insight into this matter.

Comments

  • If your 01 is running fine, you don't need to change the plugs or clean the throttle body. (schedule for plugs is 100,000 miles, some go longer if vehicle runs well) Your anti-freeze is a 5 year long life fluid. So that needs to be changed. The fluid is Chrysler specific, any brand of HOAT antifreeze will do (Mopar, Motorcraft, Zerex, BUT NOT GM Dex-cool) I just drained and re-filled, no flush. For best life and performance, your transmission fluid should have been changed twice already, 30 + 60 thousand miles. I changed mine for the first time at 60,000 miles. It is a MUST TO USE ATF+4 ONLY!! I would get this done at the dealer, because other places will most likely use the wrong fluid. Again, a flush is not necessary, just drain, filter and re-fill.
  • We have a 01 DGC EX and they told me at the last oil change, back in Oct., that the plugs were cracking. They gave me a price over $300 to replace the plugs and wires. I asked them why did the plugs need changing, since we only had 78K. I was told since the wires needed changing, the plugs should be changed too. Well, I looked at all the plugs and really didn't see any cracks. But, I got the instructions as to how to remove the wiper crawl to get at the back three plugs. I replaced the plugs and wires myself with no problem. Only cost me about 2 hrs and about $100 bucks. :)
  • I have an 01 town and country LXI and had transmission replaced at dealer in November. Now have 75k miles on it. It runs fine except occasional idle misses at red lights.
    Engineer at dealer said it is backfiring real bad, Now I don't know how he came to that conclusion, Did he run it through a computer or by ear. He said the plugs and wires need changing at $300. A mechanic friend said he will help change the plugs and wires. What plugs do people normnally use Bosch, NGK etc. What wires should I get Duralast or Bosch. At this mileage, should I go on and change the fuel filter as well. What else should I be looking for maintenance wise as well. Motoringmama can you direct me to where you got the instructions on changing the spark plugs.

    Thank for any response
  • I opted out of changing my plugs for now, so I can't help you there. But I do recall someone posting on how to do a spark plug and wire change somewhere on this forum. I do believe it might have been in the Dodge/Chrysler problems and solutions forum. You may have to do a little searching, but I'm sure you will find it.
    Good Luck
  • Use the plugs that came with the van. Under hood emmission sticker has make/model of spark plug. I would purchase Mopar wires at the dealer parts counter. Use anti-sieze on plug threads (careful to keep off electrode) and di-electric grease in plug wire boots.
  • Just bought "06 Grand Caravan this week. Before we left dealer we asked for second key. could not find the key. Next day we were told it only came with one key, and that we would have to buy the second key which will cost around $150.00 trying to fight it. Is it a law or common curtsy to provide us with another key. They claim that 1/2 of the used cars only come with one key. I got a new car lease. Do i have grounds to have them pay for a key??
  • I have never heard of them only providing one key. I bought a used '01 caravan, and they provided not only 2 keys but 2 remote keyless entry devices.
    And I also bought an older used car last year a '95, and they even had 2 keys and remotes. Sounds like they lost your 2nd set. I would argue that they provide you with the 2nd one at no additional cost.
  • masterpaul1masterpaul1 Posts: 421
    I would fight it too. We bought a used 01 DGC EX and it only had one key and keyfob. We ask them for a second key, to witch we got. The keyfob we had to pay for, $12.00, because they didn't have any used ones.
  • I have a 2006 Dodge Grand Caravan with 21000 miles and have been following the maintenance logbook. The dealer is recommending a "fuel service" and four wheel alignment (neither of which appear in the log). Are these useful as routine maintenance (or a way for the service department to make some extra money)?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    We have two DGCs, one with 156,000 miles and one with 100,000 miles, and neither of them have had any "fuel service" done on them, exactly as the manual suggests. So far at least, both vans run as well as they did when they rolled off the showroom floor, and both are attaining mileage numbers that are as good or better than they've ever posted before. Go figure.

    Upon occasion I've heard some dealerships insist that the "fuel service" was something required by Chrysler via a service bulletin of some sort. I always recommend to folks whenever they are told that to ask to see the Service Bulletin. So far, every time the dealership has had their bluff called, they've backed down.

    As for the 4-Wheel alignment, well, that depends on how badly you beat on your van over pot-hole infested roads. Our 1998 had its first alignment just shy of 90,000 miles, and our 2003 has yet to be aligned. In the case of both vans, they've worn their combined five sets of tires nice and evenly.

    Best Regards
    Shipo
  • My 2006 DGC has 34,000 on it. I took it in for 30,000 mile checkup. Dealer recommends I have the transmission flushed ($170), power steering flushed ($120), and front brakes done ($165), for a total of $455. On the fancy fluid display panel (showing a transparent capsule of new fluid alongside a dab of mine) my colors weren't quite as pretty; I can't find any recommendation in the Driver's Manual Maintenance schedule. Any suggestions?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    There are two schools of thought regarding the maintenance of the Generation 4 transmissions:

    1) Believe the engineers that designed the thing in the first place and drive it without replacing the transmission fluid (which is the Chrysler recommendation)
    2) Don't believe the recommendation and have the fluid and filter serviced every 30,000 miles (which was the schedule of the 1999 and older vans).

    For my part I believe the engineers, and as such, I change the fluid and filter on our 1998 3.8 liter DGC every 30,000 miles, however, our 2003 3.8 liter DGC has over 100,000 miles on the factory fluid and filter and it still shifts as smoothly as it did the day it rolled out of the factory.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • do the 2005 caravans have a fuel filter? cannot find a change interval or any mention in the manual
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Yes, they have a filter that is located above the fuel tank (you have to lower the tank to get to it), that said, there really is no change interval. I'm thinking that if I still have either of our vans by the quarter of a million mark (only 93,000 to go for our older van), I will probably swap out the filter in spite of the fact that I've read reports of folks getting more than 400,000 miles out of theirs.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,651
    Wait, Shipo, you only have 153,000 on the '98?! No wonder you get such good mileage! :P
    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    He-he, actually I noticed that it was showing three-fives and three-ones (as in 155,511 miles) this evening. ;)

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • ijkhanmanijkhanman Posts: 1
    Hello ,I need to know how to reset the engine after I have changed the oil on a 2005
    dodge grand caravan 3.3 gas engine ?..
  • hagbardhagbard Posts: 1
    I have a 1997 Voyager (3L, 3spd Auto), been digging through my old receipts and notice that nothing has EVER been done with my transmission. No fluid replacement or change. How important is this? My car currently has 175,000 km (110k miles) on it and seems to be running fine. Should I ignore it?
  • driabbboydriabbboy Posts: 2
    I HAVE A 1999 3.8L V6 DODGE CARAVAN AT 135,000 MILES. I AM STILL GETTING THE SAME GAS MILEAGE (BETTER THAN 20 IN TOWN) AS I HAVE FOR THE LIFE OF THE VEHICLE. DO I REALLY WANT TO HAVE PLUGS AND WIRES REPLACED? SEEMS LIKE, IF AIN'T BROKE, DON'T FIX IT.
  • dno36dno36 Posts: 71
    Many systems in the car are now "sensored" to the firing of your plugs.
    Even before you will see any drop off in mileage, your car may start compensating itself for the less-than-efficient fuel burning at the plugs.
    The biggest plug problem we've seen in our CPD mini's, is the gap gets larger.
    You could probably re-use the plugs and wires, but they should be pulled, cleaned and gapped.
    However, if you do it yourself, you will want to replace the wires and plugs when you see how much of a PITA the plug access is.

    My 2 cents
    Hope this helps. ood luck.
    :)

    Dean.
  • Full procedure how to reset oil service light Dodge Grand Caravan. If you like to reset any maintenance oil light after an oil change. Or reset check engine light, airbag light, inspection key or insp errors when maint reqd, for Dodge cars. Or any warning light for service reminder which appears on the display.

    http://resetservicelight.com/reset-oil-service-light-dodge-grand-caravan/

    All information is taken from the Dodge Grand Caravan owners manual.
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