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Chrysler PT Cruiser Owners: Problems & Solutions



  • I have a 2001 PT. Sometimes when I accelerate, the brake light comes on and stays on until I tap the brakes. It sometimes does this when I accelerate from a full stop, sometimes when I'm already moving. It doesn't seem to be accompanied by any gripping of the actual brakes - just a not-so-random light. Happens more often if I accelerate aggressively than when I gradually accelerate. Of course, the dealer hasn't been able to replicate this problem. Anyone had similar experiences and should I worry? Thanks. :confuse:
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    check the fluid level in the master cylinder. As the brakes wear and the fluid level drops, it will cause those symptoms. As the brakes wear further and the level drops a bit more, the light would go on all the time.
  • Thanks, I'll give that a try. Can I just add more fluid or should I think about replacing the brakes? I only have 25,000 miles on the car.
  • sh56sh56 Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 Pt Cruiser with manual transmission and 23,000 miles. Suddenly as I was driving it became extremely difficult to shift gears. Then it was ok. I drove about 1/2 mile and the problem happened again and this time I could not change gears at all. I had to turn the engine off before I was able to shift to any gear. If I started the car in 1st gear, I could not shift to any other gear. I finally made it home turned the engine off and then turned it back on and had no problems shifting gears. I drove the car about 1/2 mile with no problems.

    Does anyone know what could be the possible causes for this problem? I'd like to have some idea of possible causes so as not to incur unnecessary expense.

    Thank you.
  • My wife & I own a 2002 PT cruiser. 7 weeks ago with only 22,000 miles our transmission would not up-shift properly. We took it to the dealer and were shocked when we found it was not in warranty. They replaced the 22020 Trans output speed sensor and we reluctantly paid the $210.30. 2 weeks and 200 miles later it did exactly the same thing again. They again replaced the Trans output speed sensor as it was defective, but at no charge. On March 16th we again took the cruiser in as the same problem arose again. The first internal controller module they received was defective and they had to reorder it. When it finally came in I was very upset at being charged $563.96 and THEY REFUSED TO GIVE ME THE DEFECTIVE PART. Now it has the same problem again. Help!!
    What would anyone suggest?? or call toll free 800-380-7355. Thanks a bunch
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Adding fluid will take care of the initial problem which is low brake fluid. Of course the brake fluid IS low most likely because of wear on the brakes so it's certainly an encouragement to have the brakes checked. The fluid sensor seems to be fairly sensitive so I suspect that you would probably find the front pads to be about half worn.
  • whizwhiz Posts: 1
    Did you ever find the cause to rattle? I have a 2001 that I found the hatch cover making some noise ,but it gets real loud on bumpy roads, still looking for the culprit.
  • I have a 2004 turbo PT and have a squeak that seems to come and go with the temp. more as it gets warmer out. The dealer didn't seem like they wanted to look for it. I'm going back and demand they fix it. :(
  • I just bought a 2001 Cruiser and I love it so far. It is a standard and when i am completely stopped the car idles rough like it is about to stall. it does this when i have the clutch in or even when i have the car in nuetral. anyone know what i can do to solve this problem. i love the car but this is an annoying problem.
  • I am having a problem with the rough idling at a stop. what have u heard will solve the problem? Thanks for your help
  • vivovivo Posts: 1
    I have taken my '04 in three times now. Today I phoned the service dept on my way home to say it was still happening...and it happened three times during the phone call! The mechanic has informed me that there are numerous complaints coming in, that Chrysler is trying to find a fix, but at this point, there is none. They have replaced plugs and thought it was a sensor..but they still don't have a clue. He told me this is happening all over...and to please be patient until they can find out what is wrong. I came on this site for the first time to see if anyone else is having the problem. It's a rough idle and will actually die on me occasionally. Anyone else??
  • likemyptlikemypt Posts: 2
    Have a 2001 Touring and have been very happy with it. No major problems up till now. Yesterday, after a day of driving without incident, returned to the car after it was parked for 2 hours. Put the key in the ignition and nothing happened. No clicking sound of a starter trying to start, no other sounds. Checked lights to make sure battery was working -- it was. On the instrument panel, the lights for air bag, seat belt, oil and anti-theft were on even when the key was out of the ignition - they were just staying on. (I am not sure what this anti-theft light corresponds to as we have nevber used an anti-theft system nor are aware of PT having one). The automatic door locks would work to open the doors but not to lock them. Any ideas on what could be going on? Thanks in advance for any advice.
  • i could be the low brake fluid
  • likemyptlikemypt Posts: 2
    An update on the problem in post 178: My mechanic said that after removing the dash and instrument panel he found two relays that were still in the ON position. When he replaced them the car started -- he started it several times and it was starting OK. But he is concerned with whether it was just the relays that were bad or did something cause the relays to get stuck in ON. He has checked Tech Service Bulletins and hasn't found anything specific about relays. Has anyone else encountered this or have any ideas -- we'd hate to drive the car with a worry that this could recur because we cured the symptom but no the disease. Thanks.
  • We had the exact same problem. After getting the Jiffy Lube treatment (Signature Service) the problem disappeared. So, our guess is that it is related to brake fluid levels.
  • davef3davef3 Posts: 3
    :confuse: HI i just bought a turbo GT 2003 automatic. I have read the consumers reports on these cars and they are rated very high. But on this site there seems to be many problems with them. My question is about gas mileage the dealers tell me you can get 32 highway on this page i have only seen 22. With the turbo engine do you have to use premium fuel or can you use regular unleaded gas
  • andy27andy27 Posts: 5
    I have a 2005 PT Turbo with an automatic trans and for the most past love the car. One thing I do notice is that once I back up out of my driveway and put the car in drive it really clunks into gear. Seems to do this only when the car is cold. Its almost like dropping the clutch on a manual (although not quite that severe). I have heard bad things of Chrysler trannys and wonder if anyone else has this problem or knows if this is normal?? It does not so it all the time, but enough to make me nervous.
  • Regarding the door locks that won't work anymore. I had exactly the same thing happen after my battery went dead one day. According to this is a problem with the RKEM (remote keyless entry module) which is under the dash. According to other sites on the web, this is a common problem with this car--the RKEM goes haywire and the locks don't work or work erratically.

    I've doing some diagnostics on it now. Most likely, it'll need to be replaced and then taken to the dealer so the keys will work again.

    It's amazing how fragile this car is. I'm very disappointed in it.

  • bamapt1bamapt1 Posts: 1
    HAS BEEN 22 MPH.
  • jessie5jessie5 Posts: 1
    I had my '01 serviced at the dealership in Feb.& in March I noticed the smell of antifreeze. Now I have discovered that the green vs. orange antifreeze was used & it has been diagnosed with needing a new water pump.. Is it possible the wrong antifreeze caused this??The dealer says no OF COURSE!!Help!!! :
  • davef3davef3 Posts: 3
    :( Did you use premium fuel or regular. Little disapointed with that gas mileage. I owed a 2004 Saturn Vue with the 3.5 v6 automatic pretty decent gas mileage. I think this new PT Crusier is going to be worse.Does this car have to have premium fuel or regular. Dave<
  • taylor10taylor10 Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 PT Cruiser Limited.
    Currently, it has 93,000 miles.
    When I drive, I have noticed that I am feeling bumps a lot more than usual.Can somebody tell me what this is and how much it would be to fix it?
  • jmusserjmusser Posts: 3
    tell me more. we have two 2001 cruisers, 35k miles, and they just started making clunking noises from the back especially on bumpy roads.
  • jmusserjmusser Posts: 3
    just found the prolem. the rear wheel well liner, called the splash shield in the manual. especially on the drivers side. the liner is not one piece. the large piece is screwed to the body but the smaller plastic pieces use plastic push pins to keep them in place. they are now a little loose.

    but the driver side is a bit longer and lower. and I guess after 4 years the body has lowered a little as the springs and shocks wear. now the shield can hit the connection between the stabilizer bar and the link when going over bumps. I simply pulled it up and away and wired it in place to the frame. Noise 95% gone. these seem to be attached to the "rear bumper fascia", the grey bumper cover and the colored plastic below. they empasize the noise of the splash shield banging the link.
  • jtrushjtrush Posts: 1
    hi andy,
    i got a 2002 pt with an automatic transmission. its not a turbo. anyhow my tranny went dec. 2004 and the dealership said my filter was totally clogged. now today the tran went again and its clunking. i got no reverse and barely any forward motion. my question is do you know if this is an issue with these cars?
  • buckeyeppcbuckeyeppc Posts: 1
    Was this problem ever resolved ? My 2001 Cruiser is acting the same way and I'd hate to pay a lot to have a mechanic start from scratch if this was already resolved.

  • davidspeardavidspear Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 turbo PT with a squeak in the steering column similar to hutch3531. It seems to get worse as the car heats up. It first showed up about three weeks ago when the car had only 5,000 miles on it. When driving straight ahead, as on the freeway, everything is fine. But when turning either left or right, a squeak, like rubber on rubber, begins, and then continues the whole time you're turning. It takes all the fun out of driving the car. I went to the dealer last week and they sprayed a lithium lubricant, but that didn't help. This week they replaced two boots (whatever that is), but unfortunately it didn't seem to help. Any suggestions?
  • andy27andy27 Posts: 5
    Jimmy, I'm not sure if its a big problem with Chryslers small cars, but I know Dodge trucks have bad tranny issues. My father in law has a Dodge Ram 3/4 ton and the tranny blew out at 60,000 miles. He said the trannies they throw in thier trucks cannot handle the engine. I'm hoping the problem is an isolated issue with the trucks and have not spillied over to the PT lineup. I'm worried my clunking noise could develop into a serious problem.
    Anyone else with tranny problems on the Cruiser?
  • ptpurpleptpurple Posts: 1
    I have an '01 Cruiser and have had this same problem several times beginning about 6 months ago. They changed my spark plugs. The problem stopped for awhile, started again about a month ago, lasted about a week. It started again about 3 weeks after that and I drove directly to my mechanic so he could see.....No problem codes came up and he found nothing to be problematic. He has sent me to the dealer to reflash the car's computer with software updates. Not sure what this is going to do...My mechanic thinks the problem may be in one fuel injector but it will be costly and time consuming to check that out and he's not positive that that's the problem.
  • redbellyredbelly Posts: 1
    did you ever solve this problem??? the same thing happened to me last week? I haven't figured it out yet?
This discussion has been closed.