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Dodge Dakota - General Topic

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  • izzoizzo Posts: 1
    My 99 3.9L V6 is doing strange things with the temperature gauge. The gauge will go from normal up to the red zone and then back down to normal, this will all happen in a span of about 30 seconds. It ususally happens after I've been driving stop the car and then resume driving shortly after stopping. The engine can't actually be getting that hot and then cooling down that rapidly can it? Any ideas what might be wrong? Thanks.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    izzo,

    My first suspect is the engine temperature sending unit or a bad connection.

    Are all the gauges working okay?

    Regards,
    Dusty
  • I had the v6 in an older dakota also. I had that same problem watching the temp gauge go up pretty high while waiting at lights or stop signs. My buddy who bought the 'replacement until I get a new one' truck seen that and put in a new thermostat and that problem was solved. Regards,Ger
  • mopar67mopar67 Posts: 728
    to the nth degree! If you drive it right, it will hit EPA figures posted in plain view on the window sticker. Best I got was 19 on mostly rolling terrain, 70 MPH with the AC on. Running that trip on Philips 66 gas. 87 octane.

    Rig had the 45RFE tranny. 3.92 rear axle.
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    Hello out there,I am considering buying a 2003 Dakota club cab with 33miles,yes 33 miles,don't ask.This will be first truck since 1987 Elcameno.My question,is this a good truck? 3.9V6 Auto,and a bunch of other stuff.Just need to know if 03 is ok or should I go with 04.I can buy this sleeper for about $18,000.Thanks for any input.duwop1
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,226
    well, you're missing alot of details, so I'm not sure if its a good price, but just so you know, Dodge is offering about $4K or $4500 rebates on the '04 Dakotas. Take that from the invoice price you could probably negotiate and you are talking cheap cheap cheap.

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '14 Town&Country

  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    Thank you for your reply back to me whoever you are.I realize that I did not include a lot of information(the 2003 club cab 4x4 was loaded)I was just asking if a 2003 for 18k with 33miles was comparable "truck wise" to a 2004 for 21k after rebates.With 33miles we are talking new,but the truck has to be sold as used.It's complicated.Let's put it this way is a 2003 a dog?I know nothing about dodge dakota's.I do own two dodge car's but no trucks.Thanks again.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    I have a 2003 Club Cab with 31,000 miles at two-years old that so far has been the best new vehicle I've ever owned, including cars from Nissan and Toyota. Are all as good as mine? No. But the 2003 Dakota received at least one award for "best in quality."

    From '99 up, the newer the Dakota is the better it is.

    Good luck.

    Best regards,
    Dusty
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    Thanks for the reply.I just discovered this forum thing yesterday while looking for info on the Dakota.You guy's are nuts,I'm trying to figure out if I should buy an 03 or 04 and you guy's are breaking down oil,rear end's front end's bumpers,about the only thing I haven't seen is somebody wanting to modify the glove box.Maybe it's in one of the earlier discussions.I am really, really, impressed.I would like to go over my delema one more time if anyone want's to reply.Until then I am going outside and install a turbo-charger in the glove box of my 01 Stratus R/T, in the dark, with one hand tied behind my back.So there
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    >>>Let's put it this way is a 2003 a dog?<<<

    No.
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    Two hours ago I traded the R/T without the turbo charged glove box for an 04 Dakota club plus, 4.7 5 speed, equipt with lots of stuff.I was putty in their hands.Every time I said no they kept throwing more $$$$ at me.I never stood a chance.Now I need to go out and have a couple glasses of wine and reflect on what I've done.Remember you answered my call for help,now you own me.I'm going to need a lot of answers to questions that I don't even have yet.My summer toy is a White Mustang Cobra SVT .By the way i'm Sixty one going on Twelve,hey I don't know many Saturday's I have left!!! One last thought wouldn't dual exhausts coming straight out look cool.Goodby,I won't bother you folks anymore,I need to go to auto zone and exchange this turbo charger.Rock on
  • kalrkalr Posts: 1
    How do you remove the metal sleeve that the plug wire goes into so you can change the plug. Can't get a plug socket into the sleeve hole ??
  • ron35ron35 Posts: 134
    duwop - You done good. The 3.9 engine has been phased out and replaced by a 3.7, which is an off shoot of the 4.7 with two cylinders loped off. The 4.7 and 3.7 represent new technology and better gas mileage in addition to more power. I have a 2K Club Cab 4.7 5 speed 4x4 with 57K miles and absolutely no problems. I have compared my mileage with friends who have the 3.9 and I am getting gas mileage which is a little better than theirs. The 4.7 and 5 speed are an excellent combo.

    Ron
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    Ron,Thank you for the reply and the atta-boy.I am picking up my new pal this afternoon.The only experience I have had with trucks are my dearly beloved "five" El-cameno's.I always liked trucks that didn't look like trucks,but I loved to carry around "stuff".Anyway,I am really looking forward to this new experience.For the last 3 day's I have become addicted to these forums and discussion groups.Except for exotic car types you truck guy's are a diverse group of very very strange Dude's,but a good kind of strange.I hope I can be excepted into the fold.In 25 words or less,is there anything I should do at pickup or in the first week or so.Thank you again, About to be the newest truck guy.Duwop
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    You can't remove the metal heat shield unless the plug is out.

    You need to acquire a thin-walled spark plug socket. These are available at auto parts stores.

    Good luck,
    Dusty
  • ron35ron35 Posts: 134
    duwop - I don't believe ther is anything you need to do right away. Some things I have done, as well as several others on this forum, you should consider down the line are: replacing your air filter with a K&N filter, they last a life time and help the engine breathe better; install front wheel dust covers so you don't have to waste time cleaning the wheels every few days; switch over to Mobil 1 or another synthetic after the first oil change; install Redline or another synthetic in the front and rear differentials, the transfer case and the manual transmission.

    Ron
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    Thanks for taking the time to answer my question.52 miles and I already love it.I will certainly consider your sugestions.Once again thanks for taking the time.I did already order a ear fiberglass bed cover and a bug deflector thingy,Did not buy them from Dodge,got a good Quality for less $$.One more thing I am really thinking about having cat. back dual exhaust installed,saw a Ford 150 with them coming straight out the back,really looked nice.Except for the cost any thoughts?Thank you again.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I agree with most of what ron35 has said but must caution you about "K&N" air filters.

    Most folks that know about this stuff will tell you that "K&N" air filters filter WORSE than the stock air filter. (read... 'less engine protection') The weak argument that they "flow better" actually is the result of the worse filtering.

    There is no reason on earth for an everyday vehicle to have an air filter that "flows better". The major restriction in the intake plenum is the throttleplate which spends VERY little time at WOT (Wide Open Throttle) Even if you were an aggressive driver and like to hold the throttle pedal on the floorbaord, a better-flowing air-filter would make less than a 1HP difference at the high RPM levels.

    Save yourself the cost of a "K&N" air filter and change your paper filter every 30K miles. Even after 120K miles, you would still come out with more $$ in your pocket that can be spent on better goodies for your Dak.

    I welcome anyone that wishes to discuss the physics of the internal combustion engine in relation to the intake airflow characteristics to dispute the above facts. (I would even discuss the addition of a turbocharger to the intake and its relation to the airflow)
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    There is no such thing as a "cat back dual exhaust". All the exhaust gasses still go thru a SINGLE catalytic converter. A "dual exhaust" is 4 cylinders feeding each leg of the exhaust system. (3 cylinders on V6)

    Splitting the exhaust flow into 2 pipes after the cat actually is detrimental to performance in several ways. Not the least of which is the extra weight of the 2 pipes. On the 4.7L engine, it has been shown in dyno-testing that a single 2.5" may be the best. (Any larger looses the all-important "velocity" that is desired in a performance exhaust)

    You need to ask yourself what you are looking for in a cat-back system. If you can please put the following into your personal order of preference, we may be able to guide you to a cat-bak system that best meets your needs.

    *)Sound
    *)longevity
    *)looks
    *)performance
  • ron35ron35 Posts: 134
    duwop - One note of caution on the cat back dual exhast. All that I have investigated for the 4x4 require that the spare tire be removed from its mounting under the truck. Some of the manufacturers try to hide this with an asterisked footnote in minature print so that most will not notice it. On the K&N air filter I would urge you to do your own research. I have had mine installed for over 50K miles and when I have cleaned the throtle body it was much cleaner than it was with the stock air filter.

    Ron
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    First,thanks to ron35(what does the 35 stand for)and bpeebles for answering my post.I think bpeebles saw thru my ignorance when I said cat-back.Would it have made a difference if I said back of cat?My thought is to leave the cat.alone and have the duals end up coming out under the bumper like old time duals.There's a custom exhaust shop near me that seems to know what they are doing and have done several.I'm not positive,but I think they know I want them coming out the rear, not the side.Of the four choices that bpeebles listed looks,sound,performance,and longevity,I was only interested in looks.If this project is going to cause problems with my truck then I'm out.You do not need to go deep, but I thought that by the time the exhaust left the cat it didn't matter how many pipes you had.Now,a guy who has no clue what intake plenum is, probably has no clue about anything.(by the way I am talking about me)You guy's are just to smart for me.How come no one mentioned my super charger jokes?I thought they were funny.Oh well!!! thanks again
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Ron35 is correct. Most dual-out-the-rear on the dakota require REMOVAL of the spare tire.

    EXAMPLE:
    http://www.geocities.com/maldbnsf/Dualback.html

    Here are 2 links with pictures of Daks with dual exhaust out the back (like you describe)
    http://home.ec.rr.com/blackdak/mods.htm#MBRP

    (this one KEEPS the spare tire)
    http://www.geocities.com/dak2nv/magnaflow.html

    Here is a small sample of exhaust links from my research. (I will leave it up to you to figure out which one I have on my Dak ;-))
    http://www.mbrp.com/
    http://www.gibsonperformance.com/
    http://www.bbexhaust.com/
    http://www.truckaddons.com/Catalog/subpages/Borla1.htm?CP1=Goto&a- mp;a- mp;a- mp;CP2=borla
    http://www.borla.com/
    http://www.bosalperformance.com/
    http://www.edelbrock.com/home.html
    http://www.exhaustproslinc.com/index.html
    http://www.jardineproducts.com/
    http://www.magnaflow.com/01home.htm
  • 5553543255535432 Posts: 150
    I own a 2003 RAV 4 right now. and I want to trade it in for a Honda SUT. Unfortunately it would be a long wait and the RAV 4 doesn't give me the peace of mind while driving it coz it ain't got no sideairbags. Have seen alot of T-bone accidents and side-airbags make a big difference in terms of gravity of a persons injuries.

    Anyone who can cite reasons why I should lease a Dakota over a Nissan Frontier or Toyota Tacoma aside from the fact that I hate Toyotas and their lying dealers. Am considering leasing American trucks now coz Consumer Reports showed that the Dodge Dakota is reliable. Aside from the Dakota which one among the American cars is a better choice? Does the Dakota have a V6 and sideairbags.

    I wanted to dispose my RAV 4 last week but my wife lost the cargo cover when she went shopping at Costco. Toyota wanted $600-700 to replace it, got a replacement for it from ebay for $200. Now am ready to trade-in, or maybe trade lease.

    Thank you for all your responses
  • duwop1duwop1 Posts: 13
    AH-HA As Peter Sellers would say,The mystery is sol-ved,I told you guy's not to trust me,how about we forget everything I've said and start over.Leave the cat on,leave the muffler on,just cut the dam tail pipe off,add a y pipe a couple of hangers,a couple of stainless steel round tips coming straight out under the rear bumper and wa-la you have the but end of a truck with dual exhausts.Not only is it going to look great,IT DOES LOOK GREAT,I DID IT THIS MORNING AND COULDN'T BE HAPPYIER.As I mentioned earlier I already have all the performence I need with my Cobra SVT,I would justlike to have a great looking truck that runs nice.Thank you all,and If I may I'd like to come back.Thanks again.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    Once being fond of Nissan after a very cordial 10-year relationship with my past Sentra, I found it a little difficult to walk away from the Frontier. However, the '03 Dakota Club Cab that I purchased has been remarkably satisfying in every way.

    My main objective was to be able to load my ATV onto the bed of a truck and close the tailgate. This was not only impossible in the Frontier, but the four-door version of that truck had extremely disappointing rear seating.

    Guys with the V6 Frontier are reporting slightly higher fuel mileage, but not much. This summer my 4.7 V8 auto had an average of over 18 MPG. The Dakota is solid and quiet and more than quite comfortable.

    Best regards,
    Dusty
  • bobfishbobfish Posts: 48
    I would like to install a power driver seat in my 03 Dakota. I bought a new Dakota power seat base on e-bay but I need a power seat wire harness with the controls to operate it,went to a Dodge parts dept.and they said they could not order a harness just for the seat and told me I should try a salvage yard.I have called several salvage yards with no luck. Anyone out there with any knowledge of auto electronics who could help me come up with a way I could hook this up by making my own kind of wire harness with maybe rocker switches from an auto parts store? I would appreciate any help.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    >>>and they said they could not order a harness just for the seat and told me <<<

    Hmmm. I once participated in a major wiring repair on a '71 Dodge Coronet that had been hacked up. All of the firewall wiring had been cut at the connectors (Hemi engine was stolen).

    We were able to order all of the wiring harnesses at that time. Of course, that was 30+ years ago.

    So what happens should a Dakota catches on fire or something? Still, I find it hard to believe that the harnesses are not available from the factory.

    Try another dealer. Maybe the parts guy wasn't savvy enough.

    Good luck and best regards,
    Dusty
  • bobfishbobfish Posts: 48
    Yes I can order a harness, but it is a complete wire harness for the entire truck. I went to two different dealers same story.
  • I bought a 2000 Dakota club cab with 45,000 miles a couple of weeks ago. When I test drove it, the engine light came on. The dealer checked it and said it was a loose sensor under the hood. I bought his explanation and the truck. Yesterday the engine line came on again. I know I'll need to get it checked, but is this a common problem?
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    >>>When I test drove it, the engine light came on. The dealer checked it and said it was a loose sensor under the hood.<<<

    In the literal context of what you wrote in the above, no, it is not a common thing.

    There are many, many reasons for a check engine light. You need to get the fault code out of the system. Starting with the ignition switch in the off position, move the switch to the on position three times, stopping in the on position. Observe the oddometer section of the instrument cluster. You should see a fault code displayed (if you have a fault) starting with the letter "P."

    Come back here with the code and someone can ggive some indication of where the problem might be.

    Regards,
    Dusty
This discussion has been closed.