Dodge Caravan/Chrysler Voyager Engine or Oil Pump

dlucks1212dlucks1212 Member Posts: 2
edited June 2014 in Chrysler
We were driving on the freeway. I started hearing a knocking. Then the car died. No dummy lights came on all gauges were normal. After 30 minutes car started. Still could hear a knocking and started to over heat. We replaced the water pump and the radiator. Still knocking and overheating. Took to mechanic and they said we need a new engine. I was thinking a new oil pump and possible thermostate. I could even buy a new head gasket but I don't think it needs a total engine. Is this a good estimate?


  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    If it's pounding, the engine probably needs to be rebuilt or replaced. FWIW, depending upon what engine and the model year of your engine, you can probably buy a factory new short block for under $1,400 and then have the heads and accessories moved from your old engine to the new block. Alternatively you can buy a used "long block" (a complete engine) from a bone yard and have it put in, possibly for less than $1,000 (these minivans are plentiful and their engines are known to be very robust). So, which engine do you have in your van?

    Best Regards,
  • dlucks1212dlucks1212 Member Posts: 2
    We have a 2001 Voyager 3.3 I believe. The mechanic's estimate is 3000. That seems like a lot and not worth it to me. He also said something about a possible block in the line. Like it might not be getting oil. When we drove it after the first repairs it ran fine. Just the noise and overheating. Is there a less expensive fix to get us through until I could save for the major repairs or a new vehicle. I have heard the transmission in these vehicles go out. I'm thinking that is what might happen next and I am just dumping money in the car. Oh yeah, the mechanic also tried to sell me a 1996 van for 3000 and trade mine. Sounds fishy to me and I don't think I can trust him.
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    Needless to say, diagnosing problems such as this over the internet is difficult. That said, it sounds like you're describing an engine that was run long enough with low/no oil flow, and that fried one or more of your engine bearings. If that's the case (and a second opinion might well be worth your time here), then yes, you're going to be needing some expensive repairs. That said, the 3.3 and 3.8 liter Chrysler engines (virtual twins) are well known for being extremely robust and for providing hundreds of thousands of miles with relatively minimal maintenance (i.e. primarily just oil and filters, with an occasional PCV, set of spark plugs and wires thrown in for good measure). With that in mind, you may decide that you'll just be better off buying a used engine from a junk yard (these vans are popular and as such, most bone yards have several examples that have been wrecked and still have serviceable engines) for ~$500. Assuming that you don't put the engine in yourself, you should be able to find someone that will yank the old one and put the used one in for something less than $1,000, making the total repair roughly half of what you were quoted.

    Regarding the transmissions on these vans. While vans prior to 2001 used basically the same transmission as the one in your van, there were a number of differences, particularly the type of fluid used. The older vans came from the factory with ATF+3, a conventional transmission fluid that had roughly a 30,000 mile life, however, your van (and all vans since) came with new Group III synthetic oil based ATF+4. This new fluid is good for at least 100,000 miles (the factory fill in our 2003 has nearly 110,000 miles on it and it's still going strong), and along with the other revisions Chrysler made in the transmission, you should be able to get an easy 200,000 miles out of the transmission before it fails (if it ever fails at all).

    A cautionary note on your transmission: A significant majority of the transmission failures on these vans can be traced to the fluid in the transmission. In fact, for a long time even Dodge, Plymouth, and Chrysler dealers refused to stock the "expensive" Chrysler fluid and used the "cheap" Dextron or Mercon fluids (both of which WILL cause a transmission failure within several thousand miles of their introduction into the transmission) as a means if increasing their profit. Fortunately the dealership base has been enlightened regarding this issue for at least the last decade, however, many service centers (iffy boob, Pep-Boyz...) still insist on using the GM or Ford fluid and then adding some magic elixir that allegedly makes it compatible with ATF+4 (NOT!). They can insist all they want, that crud ain't goin' in my transmission. Long story short, if you are going to have your transmission serviced, go to your dealer and have it done properly (i.e. a pan drop, a filter change, and a top off of new ATF+4). Do not, errr, let me say that again, DO NOT opt for a "transmission flush", there is considerable evidence that this type of service will kill your transmission as well.

    Best Regards,
  • knightcamryknightcamry Member Posts: 2
    I need to know how to remove the crankshaft timing pulley on a 1992 Camry. I want to remove the oil pump so I can take out the oil seal which is stuck.
    Here is what I tried:
    - tried using the two screw driver method to remove the seal after taking off the face of the oil pump. I was told it should come out easy but it is stuck.
    - now I am attempting to take off the oil pump and see if I can just knock out the seal that way

    Note: I don't have the special tool to remove the crankshaft pulley.
    Question: Is there a way to remove the pulley without the tool?
    Or is there a better way to achieve my objective(getting out the oil seal)?

    I am not a mechanic but am not afraid to learn.
    Can someone help?
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    The first thing you might want to do is to post over in a Camry related topic, this discussion is for Chrysler minivans.

    Best regards,
  • ppc2ppc2 Member Posts: 1
    2006 model - 85,000 miles - automatic. Full service history with authorised dealer. Timing belt replaced in June. Oil pump failed for no appearant reason. Have been advised that the engine need to be replaced. Has anybody experienced this problem?
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    Uhhh, does your Audi A6 have a Chrysler minivan engine in it? If not, we're probably not the folks to be asking.

    You might want to consider asking your question over here:

    Best regards,
  • jacqueline147jacqueline147 Member Posts: 1
    where is the oil pump located on a 2004 tracker and how to change it?
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    Note to the moderators: We might need to shut this topic down as these minivans have few if any problems with their oil pumps, that and it seems that we are getting requests about unrelated vehicles made by other companies. :mad:
  • Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
    Try posting your question in the Chevy Tracker group:
  • Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
    I edited the title so that it refers strictly to the Caravan/Voyager. That should help with the confusion.
  • fmledererfmlederer Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 van with 3.3 motor. the oil light goes on , but the engine runs fine. no noise or knock. I changed the sending unit but still happens. is there a second oil port that I can hook up a oil gauge instead of the light?
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