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Chrysler Sebring Problems and Solutions



  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    well, it seems the Sebring has a disease in the right front area that no dealer can diagnose

    mine, a '99, also has this problem - ghas had it from the moment I drove it out of the showroom

    you can even feel the "pull" when you are coming down a hill, breaking at the stop sign, and preparing to make a right turn - the sound SUCKS

    a mechanic friend of mine came for a drive with me and heard it clear as day - but everyone at Chryusler service is deaf. Why do they hire deaf people? I know everyone deserves to work, but....

    otherwise, I've had 45,000 error/pain-free miles with it

    if they don't fix the problem (and cover it under warranty), then I'll be crossing the Pacifica off my list (along with the Town and Ciountry, PT Cruiser, and anything else with the Chrysler badge)

    after I send my complaint to the local DA, AG and every message board I can find
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    Also, does anyone know how to get the TSBs free online?
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    You can get the TSBs for your vehicle throug Edmunds Maintenance Guide.

    Also, this discussion in Maintenance & Repair may be helpful. Long time member, 0patience, has the skinny on just about every TSB out there.

    Technical Service Bulletin

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
    Need help picking out a make/model, finding inventory, or advice on pricing? Talk to an Edmunds Car Shopping Advisor

  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    Karen: Do you have any tips for other message boards that discuss problems? This noise while turning and breaking problem seems to be prevalent and I haven't heard that anyone has correctly diagnosed the problem.
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    I'm not aware of any other discussions here in the Town Hall that pertains to Sebring problems.

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
    Need help picking out a make/model, finding inventory, or advice on pricing? Talk to an Edmunds Car Shopping Advisor

  • cooldivacooldiva Posts: 2
    I have just purchased a new Sebring Coupe 2003. After reading all these negative messages I hope this redesigned and restyled coupe gives me no problems. Does anyone have anything positive to say about the Sebring Coupe 2003?
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,659
    Did the info help at all?
    Hadn't heard if you received it or not.
  • jotekjotek Posts: 2
    Just an update to my post of Jan.22,03 concerning my 2001 Sebring Convertible. We purchased the car new on July 24,01. Since I last posted to this site, Jan 22, 03, I have taken my car to two more dealers.(The first dealer changed the oil twice.) The second dealer kept the car for ten days and never turned a wrench. Needless to say, I provided each dealer with all the documentation pertaining to service, oil changes etc.. The third dealer found thick sludge in the engine and called us to check it out. It was so thick it was ridiculous. We took pictures. (my car has had five oil changes within 15,000 miles) The thick sludge in this car looks like it should have been found in a car with at least 100,000 miles with never an oil change. My car is still at the third dealership. It has been there since Feb 25th. They are installing a new engine this week. When they finish with the engine they are going to investigate what sounds like a wheel bearing noise at the right front. At the same time, they will also check the leak in the new top. (the top was replaced by dealer number one at the end of 2002 due to visibly worn edges and the improper installation) If your car is making engine noise, I would suggest checking for sludge even though that seems terribly farfetched. Of course no one has a clue as to how the sludge got there..but it's there. (how about poor manufacturing and poor quality control)
  • I have a Jxi 99 sebring convertible, the wheels are peeling and now so is the clear coating around the bumper on passenger side by fog light and also on the tip of the hood. I went to dealer and they said I have to write to corp headquarters to see if they will admit to a factory defect. Wondering if anyone else has tried this yet?
  • emserlemserl Posts: 1
    My 6 cyl Sebring has 35,000 miles. This problem was detected at approx. 28,000 miles. There is fuel leaking into the engine oil. The oil appears very dark and strongly smells of gasoline. It seems thin. I've been taking oil samples to an independent lab for analysis. They confer that there is gasoline in the oil and the percentage keeps increasing with the mileage on the car. I've been taking car to many different dealerships. All claim that oil is fine & say there is no way that this can possibly occur. I've shown the lab results and they say they aren't valid. I've called Chrysler Corporate asking for help. They too claim this can not happen. All Chrysler reps act like I am crazy and I dump fuel into my oil. Obviously, I am not anxious for the engine to blow up. If problem goes untreated, this will occur.

    Additionally, I constantly have coolant and brake fluid "disappearing" from the car. There are no obvious signs of leakage. The car's been to the dealers for these problems too. Radiator hoses have been replaced and 100's of dollars spent to no avail.

    I also have the problem listed with my aluminum wheels peeling. When I asked the dealer, they claimed it was due to a cleaning solution used. Since I purchased car with 12,000 miles on it, I don't know what previous owner might have used on it. I believe it is inferior workmanship.

    Chrysler acts like I am crazy & intentionally damaging my car. I am upset because I owe money on this car and cannot afford to have the engine blow up while I still pay on it. I've consulted with independent mechanics that say fuel leaking could be due to faulty injectors, seals, etc. However, I cannot afford to pay a huge repair bill, that should be Chrysler's responsibility. I will never own another Chrysler product again in my life. Chrsler has the worst customer service in the world. They deserve to go bankrupt! Previously, I owned a Nissan & Toyota. I received superior customer service from both companies and their representatives.

    jotek might have the same problem as mine. This could very well lead to the sludge in the engine.

    Can anyone help?
  • cmengcmeng Posts: 26
    I see that the 2004 models are now out for the Convertible. The rebates are only $1,000 less for the 2004.

    Are there any differences to be considered for 2004 models?

  • bbunchbbunch Posts: 7
    Does anybody know where i can get a "center cap" for a chrome wheel (for a 2001 Limited). I have found 1996-2000 on the web, but no 2001 or newer. I have found an entire wheel, but dont need that. Thanks, Bbunch
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    0patience: I did get your message. The dealer found a leak in a transmission cooling line. Don't ask how much that cost to fix. After the fix, there was no more fluid on my garage floor, and the dragging noise did seem to get marginally better, but it's still there. I am pretty sure I can replicate the noise even without using the breaks on a turn, but I need to test that.

    Why is it that service techs at dealers can not hear anything? I am going to take it to another service shop that I trust.

    I can't thank you enough for taking the time to think about my problem.
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    I seem to remember someone had posted pics of his/her Sebring convert. and they had bought an aftermarket wind screen - has anyone else done this? Does it work?
  • The car wash lost my antennae. Can anyone tell me if I can order one without going to the dealer?
  • nolatabnolatab Posts: 1
    Hi All,
    Have had my Sterling Blue Limited with cream interior and navy top for 2 months now. What a beautiful car! However, I do have one nagging problem. There is a rattle in the driver's door. The dealer thinks it's the door striker and that there is insufficient clearance so that on bumps and rough roads, of which we have plenty in New Orleans, it rattles. After 4 attempts to fix, including adjusting the drivers door which was not hung properly, the rattle continues. It seems to me that the rattle is somewhere inside and perhaps associated with the window mechanism, as having the window up or down can change it. Dealer claims it's a defective design and is a "characteristic" of the car. Chrysler has not returned e-mails or calls to their customer service. I only have 535 miles on the car. anybody have any similar problems? How do you get a manufacturer's rep to look at it? Thanks for any help you can give.
  • We purchased a loaded leftover '99 JXi In April, 2000, and have had very few problems with it. Our biggest problem is who gets to drive it, the wife or me. Living in New England with our winters, the cloth top is down every chance we get. Anything above 45 degrees is fair game to put it down. The top and heater have been trouble-free and at 59K miles, the top is in perfect shape (the car is garaged every night though). No complaints about rattles or squeaks either and no problems with the 4-wheel ABS disk brakes or suspension. I did decide to change brake pads at 50K miles, but the originals were still in great shape.

    Before we bought the car, I spoke with a Chrysler service advisor about potential Sebring rag top problems (we have an almost trouble-free '99 Concorde and I actually trusted his 5-star judgment). He indicated we could eventually expect a problem with the rear window defroster - it quit working two weeks ago.

    Other problems have been with the horns, transmission speed sensors, and a slight miss in the engine. The first year we had the horns replaced three times under warranty.

    We also had problems with transmission speed sensors that failed twice - that puts the car in the "limp" mode to get it to the repair shop. The first time under warranty and the second only $75.00 out-of-pocket. The transmission repair shop indicated these sensors were subject to fail in 1998 thru 2000 model year Sebrings (also the same year Concordes).

    We also developed a slight miss in the engine at idle with less than 10K miles. The dealer checked with Chrysler and discovered the Sebring Mitsubishi V6 was prone to fuel deposits on the cylinder heads. The dealer was able to remove the deposits chemically without removing the heads and we have been miss-free ever since. We were lucky - our 5-Star Chrysler dealer actually deserved the rating. Unfortunately, they dropped the Chrysler dealership for a Honda/Hundai lineup. Go figure....

    We just replaced the original Michlein tires - still plenty of tread, but New England pot holes bubbled sidewalls on two tires. Tire dealer was amazed we had 59K miles on the OEM speed-rated tires. I decided to replace all four tires since the OEM tires were discontinued and installed Goodyear Double Eagles, same speed rating. Definately a much better ride and better traction than the OEMs. If it hadn't been for the pot hole damage, I probably would have gotten another year on the original tires.

    Would we buy another Sebring? You bet, but the '04 PT Cruiser rag top might change our minds? After all, we're almost 60 years old and still look good, especially in a Chrysler convertible!
  • snsnsnsn Posts: 56

    Did you get your door rattle problem resolved? We just bought a 2003 LXI convertible and my husband noticed the same problem today. We've only had the car for a little over a week. We have to take the car back for a tire exchange next week and will be bringing this to the dealer's attention.
  • barryriderbarryrider Posts: 3
    I recently purchased a 1996 Sebring Conv. I noticed that it seemed to be racking up the miles too quickly. I noted the distance to my place of employment as 37 miles. In two different vehicles the distance is only 23 miles, a variance of about 38%. I stopped at a Chrysler dealer, they said there was some sort of computer adjustment that could be made based on the wheel size 14, 15 or 16 inch. But, if my speedometer was accurate they said they don't have a clue what the problem would be. I followed behind someone, we communicated on the cell phone, and my speedometer matches his, so I think the speedometer is correct. Any suggestions regarding a fix will be appreciated.
  • treeman8treeman8 Posts: 13
    Hi Richard,

    I sympathise with your leak problem. We pursued arbitration TWICE on my daughter's leaking Neon (wanted to give Chrysler a chance). When the Chrylsler rep told us he didn't consider a leaking trunk a serious problem, I decided to get tough (the trunk was not useable). Be persistant and DO NOT listen to the arbitrators - they have nothing to loose turning you down. They will find ANYTHING to say you goofed on the arbitration rules.

    We went to an excellent lemon law lawyer (my last alternative, I hate lawyers). E mail, I can't remember her name right now (Lieblang?), but she works near Ann Arbor, Michigan(down the road from where your Siebring was built). She helped develop the Lemon Law in MI and she is feared by the big three (my opinion). She will evaluate your case for free, I believe (put some time into organizing your records and your case). If she believes she can help, she charges a very modest fee to pursue it (under $200, I believe). She seems to be honest about not pursuing cases she has little chance of winning. We got all of our money back on the Neon (plus some) and it was hassle free. This woman/organization is awesome. Chrysler was no match for her.

    Regarding your bad Chrysler experience, I am on my second Chrysler mini van and they have been the best vehicles I have ever owned. My other daughter is fighting Pontiac for the very common Grand Am head gasket problem (everyone gets it). I know people who own nearly every brand that have had nightmare new car problems - even Honda's. It happens to all brands, and all arbitrators are ruthless regardless of brand. Just my two cents. It's often just what luck you have regarding which car you get off the line.
  • treeman8treeman8 Posts: 13
    This board indicates that the 6 is much better than the 4 cylinder. Does this carry through for the 03 model year? Our dealer says that they sell MANY more 4 cylinders and that they seldom have trouble with them.

    Thank You.
  • Treeman8:
    Sounds like a “likely story” to me. The LX is standard with the 4, and the LXi is standard with the 6. The price difference may account for the “sell MANY more 4 cylinders”. The 4 is a straight en-gine, the 6 is a dual overhead cam so is more mechanically inclined to failures. (More moving parts = more chance of a failure.) The HP of the 6 is well worth the possible problems, and be-sides, it’s a warranty issue for the first 7 years – IF you follow the rules. Drive one of each, and try entering the freeway with each. You’ll buy the 6.

    Check the books by Haynes for your car. They are very good repair books, and are only about $20. Or get the Service Manual from Chrysler, $110.
  • I've got a '97 JX... the MOST reliable car I've ever had... mechanically sound... she now has 140k on the odometer and all I've ever done is change the oil every 4,000 miles. At 138k I finally got a new timing belt, water pump and new set of spark plugs. No tune ups. She still runs like a champ. I consider myself quite fortunate. Is there anything I can do about the dingy cloudiness of the headlight casings? It appears to be build up but I believe it is on the inside of the casing. I've had to replace the light bulbs one time around 125k but couldn't see how I could clean up the headlight casings.
  • themanxthemanx Posts: 110
    Some people use some fine sandpaper and wet sand it, some use rubbing compound, I have used some meguairs products on my 97JXI with decent results.

    I had this bookmarked:

  • brookhabrookha Posts: 1
    Hello Everyone. I have enjoyed all the comments about the Sebring. I was interested in purchasing a 2003 Sebring Coup. It is loaded with a price tag of $27,000.

    Since there are many problems listed would you buy another one?
    If I go by the Consumer Report it seems that 90% of the cars have some problems. I have a 1998 Cirrus with 107,000 and have never had a problem. I love Chryslers but now I am concerned.

    Thanks, Westminster, Md.
  • themanxthemanx Posts: 110
    Like most cars, the Sebring does have some quirks, but check out Ebay and see how many are listed with close to and over 100,000 miles. The cars when maintained do well over 100K miles.

    I have a 97 JXI that I bought used and have had to do some repairs on it, but it is a great cruiser for sure.
  • I have been wanting a convertable & have an opportunity to buy a 2003 Chrysler Sebring LX 2 convertable. The car only has 542 miles on it. It is being sold at a local dealership as the original short term owner "won" it in a contest. They are asking 18,900.00 for it. Don't have alot of particulars to post as I briefly looked at it today & am going to test drive it tomoorrow. Does this sound like a good buy & any advice would be appreciated. I currently own a 1995 Honda Odessey Minivan w/176,000 miles on it & plan on keeping it for a winter veh but would love a convertible for the summer. Any thoughts/advice on the 2003 models would be GREATLY appreciated.

  • We have a 1997 Sebring JXI convertible with 43000 miles. One problem is that the odometer and tachometer work intermitently. The mileage accumulates, but we can't read it because the odometer is not illuminated. The dealer says the car needs a new underdash circuit board to the tune of $575.
    Any ideas?
  • themanxthemanx Posts: 110
    I posted a reply to your problem, with a website link, but the Edmunds censors deleted it. IT was only for your information, not an advertisement.

    IF you want some info on fixing your speedo, email me.
  • themanxthemanx Posts: 110
    Sebrings run well over 100K miles, with the same types of normal wear problems any car has.

    I have a 97 JXI with 92K miles on it and it drives like new.

    I think it is a bargain in the convertible area.

This discussion has been closed.