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Dodge/Plymouth/Chrysler Minivan Problems & Solutions



  • 5bucks5bucks Posts: 10
    Anyone know the location of a circuit breaker on '98 plymouth grand voyager that would cut battery power with the ignition off. I recently replaced my instrument cluster. After replacing, my remote keyless entry and radio stopped working. Thinking I crossed something that caused this breaker to go. Not sure if it is a self resseting type or not. My Haynes manual shows a 9amp circuit breaker in the line that feeds power to the remote keyless entry. In the circuit diagram, it shows this breaker within a junction block near or on the body control module under driver side dash. But I just can't find it. By the way, I have checked all standard fuses and the main fusible link in engine compartment.
  • Good Evening

    I am experiencing on a intermitten basis that my 2005 Dodge Caravan won't start.

    I already took it to my local dealer and they weren't able to identify the problem.

    To date, this problem still exists and I was wondering if any of you have had the same problem and if you found out the cause of it.

    Please share.
  • Hi,
    I have a 94 Plymouth Dodge Caravan and today it was called to my attention that the car was smoking. Problem is that car had been sitting since night before and I hadn't taken it out. Now car won't start and something smells like it was burning from around the terminals near the battery. Everything lights up such as lights,radio etc. Acts like no gas but has 3/4 tank of gas. Any suggestions? I know electrical work is expensive and atleast if I had an idea where to start maybe I could cut cost and I don't want to just fix the car to run but find original problem. I don't want to be driving and in the near furture find the car on fire and myself or kids in it . Help!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :confuse: image
  • 5bucks5bucks Posts: 10
    Found the problem... IOD Fuse (Ignition Off Discharge). Of course the real problem was I did not disco the battery when I replaced the instrument cluster. The cluster had been intermittent for 3 years. In the past I stumbled on a fix which was to disconnect and reconnect the modular plug to the cluster with the engine running. That stopped working after 2yr 11mo. That's when I replaced the cluster. Problem was the modular plug on the cluster was a little different, so I had to cut the old one off and put the correct one on. I bought a used '99 cluster for my '98. One of the wires carries battery voltage with the ignition off. Must have shorted this when I put on the connector and blown the IOD fuse. Lesson learned.

    For future reference, on my '98 Plymouth Grand Voyager the IOD fuse is located in the engine compartment power distibution center. It's a 10 amp fuse - the one nearest the firewall. Symptoms of a blown IOD fuse are: No radio, remote keyless entry will not work, no interior lights with ignition off and poor engine performance. Engine started very rough, smelled as though it was running very rich and had sputtered a bit with acceleration at highway speeds. Guessing that Engine control computer needs constant battery voltage with ignition off to retain it's memory.

    The wiring diagrams in the Haynes manual was helpful in tracing the problem but not quite enough. It was easy to determine that battery power with ignition off was fed through fuse #28 rated at 10 amps. Bummer is there is no indication on the vehicle of where fuse #28 is. I wish the Haynes manual just labeled the fuses the way they are on vehicle. Instead of calling it "fuse#28" why not call it "IOD".
  • asmaagasmaag Posts: 1
    I have a 1997 PLYMOUTH VOYAGER with 67,000 miles. When you turn the A/C on the A/C belt screams. If you leave the A/C on long enough the belt will break. You can stop the scream if you tighten the belt tensioner, but it will start again then the belt will break. The compresser has been changed, and the belt alignment was checked. The only thing I can think to do is replace the tensioner. PLEASE HELP this is my wifes van and she yells louder than the A/C!!
  • jnovicejnovice Posts: 3
    I have a 1998 T & C with oil pressure problems. I have just converted to Mobile One 10w 30 from 10w 40 Havoline. The oil pressure light came on and stayed on until I reved the engine up to 1500 rpm. Above that it was off. I changed the sensor and also the pickup. It ran for 2 weeks without problems. Then it started again. I immediately shut down and waited 5 minutes. I then cranked up again without any problems. The van has 130,000 miles. There is no noticable problems with the engine, no clacking or other sounds. When I changed the sensor, I noticed the oil was very dark. It had only been in for two weeks. Do I have a sludge problem or a pump problem? Thanks for your help.
  • ckmnacckmnac Posts: 12
    Just an update to a previous post.

    Had the computer flashed and it "fixed" the transmission for a little over a month. It started acting up again and now we are going to need a rebuilt transmission put in. The first one was just patched but the guy felt it should have lasted a bit longer then 23,000 miles. Oh well. We are still driving it as it is our family vechile and the damage has been done so it isn't hurting anything. We need to save up a bit and get new tires since a broken belt in one isn't helping matters.

    Just waiting on the estimate right now. I'm hoping that it is under $2000 and with this guy who knows?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    A couple of thoughts...

    1) Did this problem start before or after you switched to Mobil 1?

    1a) If before, then the problem is probably unrelated.
    1b) If after, it could be that the extra cleaning power of the Mobil 1 has striped so much crud from inside your engine that it has clogged your pickup screen (again). What did the pickup screen look like when you replaced it? Clogged or wide open?

    2) Following along on the thought that your pickup screen is becoming clogged by sludge, and debris freed up by the Mobil 1, you might find that you have to pull the oil pan and pickup screen yet again and clean them out. After that, if you are committed to staying with Mobil 1, I'd suggest that you perform several oil changes separated by only a thousand miles or two. Why? Because the detergent properties of synthetic oils in general and Mobil 1 in particular are such that it WILL clean your engine up, regardless of whether that is a good thing or not (hence the fact that you noticed your oil was "very dark" when you changed the sensor). My other suggestion is to switch back to the Havoline, drive for a thousand miles or so (to allow the situation inside your engine to stabilize), and change it again staying with the Havoline for as long as you keep your T&C.

    3) Another possibility (although I think this is a low probability due to your comment that said, "I immediately shut down and waited 5 minutes. I then cranked up again without any problems." which leads me to think that the screen had gotten clogged, and when you shut it down, the crud fell to the bottom of the pan --temporarily--): As engines age, the main and rod bearings start showing their miles by allowing too much oil to leak through. The typical symptom of this is that at idle, the oil pump isn't able to keep the flow high enough to keep the pressure above the minimums to keep the light off.

    FWIW, I have a 1998 DGC with 110,000 (as of this morning) with the 3.8 liter mill (you probably have the same engine in either 3.3 or 3.8 guise), and it is also running on Mobil 1. The difference is that I've been using the Mobil 1 for the last 90,000 miles. If you would like to see just how clean that stuff makes the innards of your engine, take a look at a shot I posted in my "Caravan Stuff" photo album on Yahoo!

    Hint: use the "Download" button to bring the full resolution picture down to your computer. The two valve cover/oil filler shots are really the same shot, with the oil filler detail simply cut from the larger view, so if you are bandwidth challenged, the detail shot is the one to use.

    As a point of reference, that shot was taken 6,000 miles ago, at a point when the oil (pooled in the rocker arm and clearly still quite clean) had 4,000 miles on it. Even with my ~10,000 OCI schedule, you can see that the rocker arm and rocker shaft are still as clean as the day the engine was built.

    Best Regards,
  • My wife and I own a '03 Grand Caravan SE with 33K on it and we have had power steering issues since approximately 18K. The power steering pump, reservoir, lines and rack have been replaced (the lines have been replaced twice).

    The symptoms have been a groaning or grinding emanating from the steering at low speeds (such as maneuvering around a parking lot) along with a noticeable steering wheel shudder. The most recent service was performed in Feb. 2006. In late March, the issue occurred again this time in spectacular fashion culminating in stranding my family on the roadside for several hours and being without the van for 5 days now.

    These vans have obvious transmission, steering and general quality control problems. I am thoroughly disgusted with Chrysler and will never again purchase a Daimler-Chrysler product.

    If anyone else is having similar issues besides fish8 and me, please let me know, I'd like to hear from you
  • gino45gino45 Posts: 52
    I have a '01 Caravan and have been experiencing a steering groaning/shuddering symptom for a few months now. Just like you it's noticeable at low speeds. I took it to an independent mechanic who said it could be the steering rack or the pump. Since neither are leaking at this time, he suggested that I wait until the part in question breaks down and to change it at that time. I don't want to get stranded anytime soon, so can you tell what problem caused you to be stranded? My mechanic mentioned that even if the steering pump were to fail I would still be able to drive the van, albeit it would be harder to steer.
  • The issue that caused me to be stranded goes as follows. I'm editing for length :) On a steep grade the lower power steering line blew completely out of the power steering pump spewing power steering fluid all over the engine bay and exhaust which created a huge smoke plume. The pump was still turning and the reservoir was emptied of fluid in a matter of seconds. Without any fluid in the system, no way to keep it in and no way to change the hose on the roadside at 8:00pm on a Friday night, I had no choice but to use the 24 hr roadside assistance to tow the van to the nearest dealership and attempt to arrange for alternative transportation. Driving without fluid for even a short distance would have critically damaged the remaining components in the steering system and created a dangerous situation which could have resulted in the driver losing the ability to control the vehicle adequately. We were in a mountainous region and I didn't dare take a chance with the lives of my entire family and their friends.

    Incidentally, the P/S pump and all the lines had been replaced previously under warranty due to grinding, shuddering, etc. The P/S pump failed at around 28K. All I can say is I have a :lemon:
  • ckmnacckmnac Posts: 12
    I'm a little confused right now. When we bought our van (1998 GC) the previous owners had a paper showing transmission work which cost them $1300. You guys all said that was way too little $$ for a rebuilt transmission.

    I took the van on Wednesday for them to drive it and give me an estimate. It needs a transmission and the guy said we can't just do patchwork again because the same thing will happen all over again (transmission started acting up only 23,000 miles after the first work was done). This isn't the same shop the original work was done at and this guy has been completely straightforward about everything.

    So today he calls and says he has the estimate and it is only $1442.46. Now I'm wondering if this is too cheap for a rebuilt transmission. I have the list he gave me and here is everything. Please tell me what exactly they are doing if you know. I want this transmission to last longer then 23,00 miles. Thanks.

    604 Master Overhaul Kit
    604 Up date kit
    Torque Converter

    Overhaul 604 trans axle and
    replace torque converter. One year
    or 12,000 mile warranty

    I am so clueless about all this transmission stuff. I also got an estimate from the dealership for $2613.18.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Assuming that all of the hard internal components are still in good shape (i.e. the actual gearing and such), I suppose that your $1,442.46 is possible. Never having rebuilt one of these transmissions, anything I say must be discounted as, "just so much noise". That having been said, the questions I would have regarding this "Rebuild-it" approach (as opposed to the factory remanufactured $2,613 unit) are as follows:

    1) Are the new kits and components that are being bought from the factory (i.e. MOPAR) or are they sourced through a third party? I ask because I've heard that non-MOPAR units are quite inferior.
    2) I've heard that fairly specialized equipment is required to properly set one of these units up. What equipment does your shop have?
    3) Does this rebuild bring the transmission up to the latest engineering build (i.e. model year 2000)? That coincidentally is the first and only year/build level that exists which allows our transmissions to safely run on ATF+4 (as opposed to the now apparently extinct ATF+3).
    4) What price warranty? 12 month/12,000 mile for $1,442 (i.e. $0.12 per mile) or 36 month/36,000 mile for $2,613 (i.e. $0.0726 per mile). Said another way, is the extra $1,171 worth it to you for three times the warranty?

    Best Regards,
  • gregmangregman Posts: 24
    Anybody able to tell me what a recall with F01 means? Wife says something in letter regarding a/c. I thought there was a recent recall for the windshield wiper motor. Any thoughts? Thanks.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,347
    you aren't really getting a "rebuilt" transmission or a remanufactured transmission--you're gettng an "overhauled" transmission, which in kind of over-simplified terms means that bad parts are replaced and still-good used parts (within specs) are left in. In a rebuild, parts are replaced to bring the transmission to an 'as-new' condition whether there are still good used parts in there or not. So on a rebuild if the pump has only 50% wear on it and working perfectly, it's still chucked.

    To put it another way, "overhaul" restores function, "rebuild" restores newness and function.

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • tjcintjcin Posts: 4
    A couple of weeks ago my Sirius radio stopped working. The subscription is paid for one year with the purchase of the van. The AM/FM portion of the radio still works as does the GPS and CD player. We have had it to one dealer for two days with no results. We also contacted Sirius and they were very helpful but were also unable to solve the problem. I was wondering if anyone has had any problems with theirs and can offer any solutions before I get frustrated with the next dealer. Thanks.
  • willemwillem Posts: 16
    Re: Lug nuts torque

    It depends on the wheels (steel or alloy)
    On my 97 T&C the required torque is 100lb-ft on the alloy wheels (I read that once somewhere, and it is an easy figure to remember).It is important to gradually torque them down. The pattern on 5 bolt wheels is 1,3,5,2,4and then #1 etc. again. For steel wheels the torque is lower, but I don't know by how much.
    It is convenient to have a Johnson bar in the vehicle in case of emergency, because the nuts can be very tight, and should be!

  • willemwillem Posts: 16
    I'm on my 3rd set of Monroe premium pads (Since you're Canandian: Can. Tire has them on sale for another 3 weeks at $44.95 Cdn. I'm considered gentle on the brakes and they will last me about 30,000Km's (18,000Mi) If you have them installed they have a lifetime warranty, or in my case DIY it's 3 years 60K's.Recently replaced the rotors with premium Monroe because they started to warp after unknown mileage (at least 100,000 Km's).
    They do their job nicely but have no idea how long they will last. Price being the same (?) I think my preference would be Wagner.

  • willemwillem Posts: 16
    Try a spraybomb of 'belt dressing'
    It makes the sound go away for a few weeks or a few months.
    Available at automotive parts supply stores

  • Every time I put on the brakes the dome light comes on, is there an easy fix or is this a costly problem? The head lights also flash on and off while driving, I am thinking that it could be a loose connection.
  • jnovicejnovice Posts: 3
    Thanks for the thoughts, Shipo. I have completed the change as described by changing back to 10w30 and I'm waiting for the results. I plan to change oil and filter again at 1000 miles. I'm thinking about going back to 10w 40 from the 10w30 that I have changed to. I also am planning to go to a high efficiency filter at that time. I did remember that just prior to the low oil alarm coming on, the RPM's dropped to about 500. I discounted that as not a part of the problem. Thanks again for your info.
  • gino45gino45 Posts: 52
    I asked for Monroe's at Can Tire and they gave me Wagners (rotors). According to them, they both have the same product number. The parts guy said that Wagner makes Monroe brakes parts. I got the Wagners for $59 CDN. Can't complain about that. I held off from buying the Monroe pads since I am debating on whether to put on Ceramic pads instead. The ceramic's are about $20 more than the Monroe's, which I believe are semi-metallic. Have you ever put on ceramic pads? Would I get considerable more mileage out of them than regular semi-metallic pads?
  • My 2002 Dodge Caravan is dropping into a "fail-safe mode" (not sure if that's the correct wording). This is indicated by the service engine light and the van will not exceed around 2K RPM. Also, the squares around the gear letters light up and stay there. It appears to happen when it is raining heavy or a substancial snow. After it dries the van runs fine but the service engine light stays on. Dodge can't tell me what the code means exactly. Anyone else experience this?
  • recently purchased a used 98 dgc w/95xxx mi. anyway the the rear heater/ac will only blow out of the very back outlets, not the ones right behind the front seats. does anyone have any idea whats up with this?
  • almokalmok Posts: 1
    Any luck with the mechanism yet? I just had the identical situation happen last Friday. My 1997 Town & Country had a flat and the tire wouldn't release, so I went to the 96 Caravan to get the spare and it was stuck too! Finally borrowed the spare from a LHS, but I still have two stuck spares. Tried the up and down thing with both of them and got under and pulled , turned, shook and cussed, all to no avail.
  • On my 98 the heat only blows out on the r/s forward of the rear wheel well across from the first row of rear seats. If you adjust the air to the cold position it only comes thru the upper outlets.
    The very rear vent is an air inlet and should always be clear so incoming air is not restricted which can cause the fan motor to burn out.
  • I am having a groaning issue with my 2003 T&C LXi. I took it to a dealer and they replaced :

    Left front hub bearing
    both front sway bars, links and bushings

    the power steering reservior (it was leaking)
    power steering return lines

    Well after all that the cars is still whining/groaning at slow speeds and worstens in the damp weather. Of course the shop had it today (sunny and 75) and claims that they canot replicate the noise. I really want to scream. :mad:
  • My 2003 is visiting the shop for this exact sound. I keep telling the guy that it sounds like to heavy pieces of metal rubbing; he can't replicate the sound.

    My Mother had this same sound in a 1997 Lumina and it ended up being a bolt in her rear axel that sheared in half.
  • dogleg1dogleg1 Posts: 4
    sometimes I get no heat. Suddenly it will decide to come on. When I rotate the heat control I hear the valve working or trying to. Any ideas as to what I can do to resolve this ? Thanks.
  • aprendizaprendiz Posts: 17
    Where is located the "radiator fan relay" for a Chrysler Voyager 2000, L2,4. My fans do not works (individually tested -ok)
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