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Dodge Intrepid

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  • I have read many posts about bad timing chains. I have not experienced it though. You wrote timing belt tensioner is it a 3.5L?
  • My 1999 2.7L Dodge Intrepid engine died last year, It developed a serious knocking, so on good advise I purchased a 2002 Dodge Intrepid 2.7L engine and took it to the mechanic to install. The mechanic called me a few days later to say he had installed it and i can have it back in a day or two. When i got there he said that the car apparently developed a electrical problem because it started once and would not start again. He said that he needed a ECU for the 2002 intrepid because the car was 2002. I purchased the 2002 Engine Ecu, when that didn't work he said I needed a new 1999 engine ECU because the 2002 did not work. I purchased that also then he said that he needed a crank sensor which should fix the problem but that failed too. So far he has had my car for over one year. I wanted to take the care to someone else but he refused to release the car saying that when he contacted the manufacturer they told him that the 2002 could not work in the 1999 and that it was my fault because i brought him the engine and i could not get the car back until i pay the 1200.00 price for the install. I am taking this matter to court but just for clarification can someone please tell me if what he is saying is true? Can a 2002 2.7L engine work in a 1999 intrepid that had a 2.7L engine? Please let me know Thanks...I am desperate Desperate.!!!
  • jeromebjeromeb Posts: 31
    Makes me think that paying $100+ for a service manual before something goes wrong is a smart thing to do.
  • Well,I got my inherited 2000 2.7 w/25k miles running and cleaned up and it runs fantastic, turning 25/32 mpg.
    Interior looks like new,engine purrs,brakes/tires like new-no leaks anywhere--even a/c works.Passed state inspection.
    Body is a mess --last owner was an older gent that sideswiped parked cars and pushed in both passenger doors--nothing structural--but it looks crappy.
    What should I do--sell it-or fix/keep it. The stories of the 2.7 failing have me spooked. But with a little body work the car is virtually new with many years of life left.
    If I sell as is--will I get much--or should I repair doors and sell???
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,592
    What should I do--sell it-or fix/keep it. The stories of the 2.7 failing have me spooked. But with a little body work the car is virtually new with many years of life left.

    If it's any consolation, every mechanic I've talked to has told me that to get the 2.7 to sludge up, basically you have to go something like 10,000 miles between oil changes, let it run low, let it overheat, stuff like that. Basically, neglect the car.

    With only 25,000 miles on it, I'd imagine that it should run a good long time as long as you keep the oil changes to around 3-5,000 miles. Do you know when the coolant was last changed? It should have the orangish-pink long life coolant in it, which is supposed to be good for 5 years/100,000 miles. If you don't know when it was last changed, you might want to do so, just to be safe. Also, you might want to get the transmission fluid changed, if it hasn't been done yet. The owner's manual calls for changes every 50,000 miles under the "severe" schedule, and 100,000 miles under "normal". But just to be safe, I always had mine done every 30,000 miles.

    My '00 2.7 is currently at around 137,000 miles, and still running fine. I did have to have some freon put in this past week though, and some suspension work done.

    Unfortunately, the Intrepid doesn't have very good resale value, so you probably won't get much for it. And depending on how bad the damage is, you might not get your money's worth fixing it up.
  • I just had the heads off mine its a 99 with 125,000 miles. no sludge timing chain is fine. Problem was the valve stem seals and several electrical problems. It ended up costing me close to $2,500 over the last 6 months. That is pretty extreme but hopefully I will get another 3-5 years out of the car without these types of major repairs. I had a door skin replaced an repainted in 2003 and it cost a little over $800 full paint jobs of any quality are going to run $2,000 to $3,000. After that you could get 5 years of good driving out of that car.

    The way I look at it that car is worth whatever it saves you on another car payment. People say the car is not worth putting money into. As long as you enjoy the car, its paid for, and its reliable its fine to invest in repairs.

    Look at the alternative I have a 2006 Uplander. I bought it used for $18,000 its costing me $4,000 a year for 5 years. When all is done I will have $23,000 into this car and it will be worth about $4,000. Using that model spending $2,500 on the Dodge is not such a bad deal, as long as the Dodge is reliable.

    Just my thoughts................
  • Here are my electrical woes, new ECU, new crank sensor, new cam sensor, new AIS motor, and had to disconnect the aftermarket alarm system. Finally it seems that the car is running well.

    PS the whole thing ran $1,800
  • Thanks for the input......it runs really well so I'm thinking of keeping it.
    A few mechanics have told me to use 1 qt of transmission fliud in place of 1 qt oil to clean the engine slowly...when time comes for a change, then use 10W-30 full synthetic oil and it will kill any sludge.
    Interesting.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,592
    No problem...hope the car serves you well for many years! I've heard of putting some tranny fluid in the oil for older cars, but I dunno how well something like that would do in a higher-tech engine like a 2.7. I have heard that synthetic tends to keep the sludge away, though. Supposedly, in older engines, switching to a synthetic can start new leaks and exacerbate existing ones...but if it's too much of a problem, switching back to conventional will stop it.

    One other thing I just thought of with regards to oil. Sometimes these cars can trigger a false reading on the low oil pressure light. Happened with my '00 back in late 2003, around the 85-90K mark. Supposedly, the sensor that triggers the warning light can get hot and make the light come on, mainly in situations such as sitting at a traffic light, idling, where there's no airflow. There is a TSB that covers it, but I dunno how far back a dealer will honor a TSB.
  • I have a '99 2.7l. Replaced the relay switch to get the fan selection switch working. Then,one nite the car wouldnt start but the panic alarm and the wipers keep going. Finally the car started and everything eventually stopped. However, that same day, the headlights didnt work. Took to shop, read code and then fixed the headlights. Now, the tempurature control panel (heat/ac) doesnt work (blows cold air, vent selector doesnt move, rear defroster/ac wont turn on. the only thing working is the fan selector.) Dealer thought that the a/c control head switch was bad. Replaced that but it blew again. thought there was a short somewhere. Now its the BCM ($600 repair). Found a used one and everything worked for about 4 starts. Now the airbag light is on, windows, turn signals, and temp control panel dont work (only the vent switch). Any other ideas before i go back to the shop? Thanks
  • smithedsmithed Posts: 444
    "The way I look at it that car is worth whatever it saves you on another car payment. People say the car is not worth putting money into. As long as you enjoy the car, its paid for, and its reliable its fine to invest in repairs."

    That is good reasoning (and one I have subscribed to) until you've recently put $5000 into repairs, somebody hits you and the insurance company totals it and sends you a check for $400. Ouch! :cry:
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,592
    It was this date eight years ago, November 6, 1999, that I bought my Intrepid. Hard to believe it's been that long. I wonder if she'll last another 8 years?
  • How has the Intrepid failed me? My checkbook adds up to about 5K+ in repairs. Let's keep in mind that I paid $3500 for the car from a "friend". The car for a fact was well cared for prior to my demise, ooops, I mean purchase. The friend’s father had fluids changed, tune-ups, and general maintenance done on the car regularly. When he passed his mom could not bear to keep it. It was too much car for her and her husband never let anyone else drive. Especially not a girl. I promised to take good care of the treasure. Treasure??

    Before the ink was dry on the title *poof* transmission. What is wrong with the transmission? Well says Mr. Tow truck Driver, Probably the sensor, nothing major. These cars have trouble with sensors. NOPE! New transmission. Rebuilt of course because i am NOT paying more for repairs than the car itself. Or so I thought. 2 weeks 3K (borrowed from my boss) later car is running. YEAH!!

    Inspection time. I leave the transmission shop drive directly to inspection. Well says Mr. Inspection fellow, you have several issues before I can pass this car. These repairs added up to 1K total. For those of you countin' at home. We are at 4K and i haven't hit the 3-month mark!!

    Fast-forward a lil over 1 year. My car begins to make this horrifying grinding noise. Breaks gotta be the breaks. Family mechanic is consulted. Breaks are replaced. Drive it home (bout a 25-30 min ride) and the noise continues. i call said mechanic and take it back. He checks it out. No it's not the breaks but I now need a new exhaust. Ok good sir, how much is this check for? GREAT! here is my check good for $500. Thanks you and have a great day. See you at the bar. Long ride home still horrifying noise!!!! It is not the breaks but the longer the car runs, the more it grinds when the breaks are applied. Whatever, I stop when need be so I deal.

    Bad day at work? You just want to go home. You start your car you start the drive home and hit the highway. I can't put my driver window down now because that quit working during the fast forward part, along with the A/C and my passenger window decides when it is going to work on its own. Anyway, something on the dash catches my eye. It's the temp light with prompts me to look at the gage. It is above the "Oh my good heavens it's gonna explode stage". TIP: never leave your cell on the kitchen table when you are driving an Intrepid. I have to get home so my wonderful boyfriend can fix this heap. Or get it to a remote location and blow it to smithereens!

    In conclusion, it is 2 years; 5K+ in repairs, 15 radiator flushes, 3 bottles of Stop Leak later and the car has come to a full-fledged S-T-O-P! He just walked in and said it made a different but equally horrifying noise and pretty much gave him the bird.

    Was the car haunted by a poor lonely sole who would rather take the car out in pieces or is this car just truly a piece of crap?? I say crap but I am unsure of the unknown, hence it being called the unknown. I will never know.

    I am buying a new car on Saturday. I am not sure what I will but but I can assure you it will not start with a Dodge and end in Intrepid.

    The definition of Intrepid: adj. Resolutely courageous; fearless.

    I say the only thing fearless or courageous is the person who buys one. GOOD LUCK!
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,592
    What year is this Intrepid? What engine do you have? And how many miles are on it?

    I have a 2000 Intrepid with the 2.7, that I bought new. Currently has about 137,000 miles on it, and it is showing its age in some areas. I've had to put about $1900 into it in the past year, which includes new front brakes, new transmission lines, new radiator hoses (all of that dealer stuff, so it's pricey), both front bearing hubs (I think that was a dealer/factory part too), some other suspension work, recharging the a/c, two new tires, and a coolant flush.

    $1900 might seem like a lot, but for the age/mileage, I don't think it's too bad. Plus, this is by far the most money I've had to put into the car in any given year.

    Depending on the age/mileage of your car, I wonder if the previous owner might not have cared for it quite as well as they led you to believe? And the electrical system almost sounds to me like it might have failed at some point, but instead of getting it fixed right, by a professional, perhaps they just took it to some shadetree mechanic who monkeyed around with it and got it to more or less work again, but with unintended consequences (like your whacked power windows and HVAC controls)?

    Anyway, good luck with whatever else you end up buying.
  • I have a 98 Intrepid with a 2.7 engine that I bought used for $4400 3 years ago. I had my mechanic look it over before I purchased it and he gave it a clean bill of health. Everything was going fine for four months and then the problems started. The car was leaking oil like nobody's tomorrow. We had to add a quart of oil a week (maybe more). We took it to the mechanic; he said the valve stems needed to be replaced. Estimate: $600. Six months later, we are having more engine problems. The mechanic then says that the 2.7 liter Intrepids are notorious for engine problems. Grrrr. Somehow this mechanic didn't see fit to tell us this BEFORE we bought the car. The estimate: $2000 to rebuild the engine. We did not do it. Last time we went to this mechanic.
    A few months after that, the car mysteriously stops working. It turns out a sensor went out. Cost $300.
    Eight months after that, the tie rods needed to be repaired: Cost $400.
    Seven months later, the car starts making grinding noises, which lasted for a week or two, gradually getting worse, until it finally refused to start.
    Total cost $5700, and that's not even counting the $2000 repair we didn't do!
    It's been sitting in my driveway for two months now. I am so disgusted with it, I just want to junk it and start over with another car. Sad thing is that I've had less trouble with my 91 Ford Aerostar van, and I've had it for 10 years, and the van is older than the Intrepid!
  • I have a 2000 Intrepid that has some serious electrical problem. The car runs great, but the windows, turn signals, and heat control panel (including rear defroster) have stopped working all together along with my back up lights not working and my air bag light remaining lit at all times. At first I thought it had to do with a remote starter that had been installed on it, but after removing that, I still had the same problems. The windows are stuck halfway down and with winter approaching, I need to get this fixed a.s.a.p. for as little as possible. Dealer is really not an option, not for $80 an hour for labor. Hoping anyone can advise on the problem. I have the resources to fix it if I can diagnose it. Thanks!
  • I cant say for sure but the sludge issue is probably due to mistreatment and poor preventative maintiance. As long as you perform the regular service and take good care of the engine I cant see a problem. Its just hard for me to believe that an engine design could be responsible for cooking down the oil into sludge.

    The transmission fluid trick works well but dont run it long term. Change the oil then replace with cheap oil and a quart or even two of transmission fluid. Transmission fluid has very high detergent properties. Run the engine for 20 mins at idle then drain and replace with good qualitity oil.

    Any good qualitity oil will be fine if you change it regularly I believe the 2.7 is every 3,750 miles but I have not looked it up lately. Alot of newer engines recomend the 5-30. I have been told that the engineers feel it cuts down on wear at start up. Regular petroleum based oil is fine. Synthetic offers two big improvements the longer interval between oil changes and it can protect at higher temps. However unless the engine has a turbo it will never get to those temps. The drawback on synthetic is the higher cost.
  • My guess is the BCM also its the place where all those systems come togeather. I let the dealership replace mine but I probably should have done it myself. I got a $125 core charge for the old one so the price of the part actually came to $475. I would pull the fuse on your alarm system and see if anything improves. There also is a procedure to display the climate control errors on the odomeeter. I dont remember the process but get a Haynes manual from the auto parts store it in there.
  • Hey. thanks for the response. Just wanted to give you an update. Bought one on ebay for 10.00. Had it installed (67.00). Worked for 2 days and it went out. Bought another used one for 75.00. Took it to the dealer to have it 'reprogrammed' for my car and installed. Was told that the current BCM was good, just had some pinched wiring behind the firewall that lead to the BCM. Fixed it for 79.00. Now Im sending the 75.00 one back for a refund. Keeping the original for a spare. Dont know why the dealer didnt find the wires during their diagnosis the first time around? Oh well. Live and learn. But it would have cost 600.00 if i had listened to the dealer the first time, but decided to try a used one instead! Now its all fixed and raring to go. Have a great holiday and be safe!
  • I had the same issues (see electrical problems '99) Have the BCM (body control module) checked out or a wiring problem with the harness to the BCM. A new BCM will run you about 500.00. So check ebay (75.00 est.) Hope that helps! Have a great holiday and stay warm!
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