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Caravan/Town & Country Electrical Problems



  • Where it locate, is it in the gauge housing??
  • This might help some of you with a door lock problem. I bought a 98 T&C with a door lock problem. The first day I lock the key in and had to pay a locksmith for help. After that I was exceptionally careful not to leave the car with the keys even in the ignition. After months I found out that the door lock rocker switch on the passenger side was defective. I purchased one used for a few bucks(dealer is around 65 bucks) only to find out that mine had a small pin in the operation of the rocker that was stuck. I opened the switch with a small screwdriver and freed the pin with wd40. It has been a great releaf to me. I hope that this will help a few.
  • I have a 2004 Town and country Van,Touring Model. Lately when I am driving and use the, Left Turn Signal, I get the Right Turn Indicator Light activated on the dashboard instead of the proper one. Also, sometimes my turn signals will shut off after about 10 seconds.

    Anybody have any advice???
  • is any body know where is instrument cluter board locate??? and how to take it out???
  • I also have a 1996 Chrysler T&C LXI that the gauges would shut off and the van would stall out. I finally took it to the dealership today and was advised that this is a common problem with a short in the instrument cluster. I need to replace the circuit board and possibly the gauge set(a total of about $700 according the the dealership). I have not yet had this replaced so I don't know if this is the only problem, but it's a start at least. The other mechanics that have looked at my van stated that they don't have any codes coming up to tell them something is wrong.
    Good luck.
  • It's the instrument cluster board and from what I was explained today it is in the dashboard, but very difficult to replace unless you are experienced in the electrical system of your vehicle.
  • romottromott Posts: 4
    I had a 1998 T&C Limited. The car died one day and would not start. After replacing two ECM computers, the first one at my cost, the car worked most of the time.

    Then we had more and more occassions where the instrument panel would be dark when trying to start the car. After researching the internet, I found that several folks had been able to fix this problem by resoldering the heavy pins that are part of the grounding system on the back of the instrument cluster. Fixed!!!!

    Be aware that the dealers are all too quick to replace computers when the more likely causes are sensors and wiring connectors. The Chrysler data bus has to detect all computers up and running, any one down and the car won't start. The instrument cluster has its own computer and it was not working hence the non start.

    I loved that car, unfortunately it was totalled in an accident. We bought a 2005 T&C hoping that the Germans finally got it right. Unfortunately, now I have rock hard leather seats (that looks and feels more like pleather).
    The 2005's locks have stopped working!!! Aurghhh!!!!
  • romottromott Posts: 4
    I found a fix for this problem on the internet - (ain't it wonderful!!!!). Turns out the computer can get confused about a door lock actuator problem which will disable the locks (horn, lights, memory seats all change but no locks). Remove the IOD fuse which is located in the fuse block next to the battery for 30 seconds. problem fixed. There is supposedly a software upgrade available from Chrysler for $100 or more that fixes it. But I'll wait and see if it is enough of a headache that the software needs to be done. Removing the fuse takes all of one minute or so.
  • I have a 2001 Chrysler Town & Country Mini-van. A couple of years ago I started having problems with it starting. It would begin to start & then try to cutout for a few seconds & then die. This typically happened on very hot days. Recently it has gone to where the engine will crank but it will not start. If I pop the hood, open the relay box, remove the "Starter" relay, leave it out a few seconds, then put it back in place and crank it --- it will start right up. A guy at an Auto store said that it has something to do with the Safety Check circuit check that it goes through before starting. Please help. My local Dodge Dealer wanted to put a new computer in it??? Some how removing the Starter Relay appears to be resetting a circuit or something. Any help would be appreciated.
  • romottromott Posts: 4
    My 1998 T&C did the same thing. After the dealer replaced two ECM's (one at my expense - $700), the problem persisted. The dealer kept the car for a week, checked all the wiring and found nothing. The start sequence disables the starter after 5 failed starts (antitheft feature). My instrument panel would be dark during these events. Turns out there are some ground connections on the back of the panel that were cold solder joints. I removed the panel and resoldered them (you'll need the factory manual). Problem fixed! This car will not start if all computers aren't talking to each other. The instrument panel has a computer in it too. Good luck. Resist changing the computer - that is their quick fix - but from what I have seen on these forums, seldom fixes the problem.
  • Thank you so very much for your post!!! I had the same problem today with my 2005 Town and Country. I just went out after reading your thought and IT WORKED! You saved me a trip to the dealership. Thank you again!

  • mmg2mmg2 Posts: 1
    I just wanted to thank you for your posting about the IOD fuse and the door locks. Ours quit working yesterday. After searching on the internet, I found your post. We did what you said, took out the fuse for 30 seconds, put it back in and the locks worked!!!!!!! Thank you very, very much. I hope your post will help others too.
  • romottromott Posts: 4
    Unfortunately, this appears to be a temporary fix. My locks quit working again in 3-4 days. Removing the fuse fixes it only temporarily. I went to my dealer, and he admitted that they see this problem daily after I pointed out that there were a number of folks on the internet that said they had this problem and therefore, it was a common problem that Chrysler needs to fix. Apparently the programming makes a bad assumption about every day, long term operation of the locks and the programming that is in the BCM to monitor the health of the locks.

    He said that Chrysler says it is not a safety or emissions problem, so they won't fix it for free. I got the car back saying they had flashed the BCM meaning they had reprogrammed it, but there was no charge! Hooray, but wait, its not fixed! The locks quit working yesterday!!!! You'd think that after paying megabucks for a very well equipped car, at least the door locks would work as advertised.
  • Thank you so much for posting this. I have had problems with my locks not working for 3 months. My brother tried replacing some of the other fuses, as a matter of fact that 10d is probably the only one we didn't try. I thought I was going to have to take it to the dealer and pay thier big price to fix it. I decided to try one more time to see if i could find something on the net, and I found you post and it worked. thanks again. :)
  • I have 2001 Dodge Caravan and for the past year I have been having headlight problems; when I turn the engine on, the daytime running lights; the left lights is on, when I turn the lights on the left on one goes out and the right one comes on, when I turn on the high beams...they both work. My local Dodge dealer said they will look at it but it sounds like an electrical problem and could cost $1000. I took out the headlights myself and cleaned them and put in new bulbs and I still have the problem...both turn signals work and so do both side reflector lights. Anyone have any ideas? Desperate Julesb :cry:
  • Several months ago, my 98 T&C began to start, run for about 5 seconds, then die. After about five attempts at this, it would no longer even turn over. At first, after about an hour, it would start and run. I thought it had something to do with the remote door opener, so I stopped using it. The problem happened more and more often, and the wait time before it would start became longer and longer. Recently, I took the van to the local dealer so they could figure out what was causing the problem. They did some "recall" repairs, but they could not figure out the problem with the security system. They told me they thought it was in a wiring harness, but they were not sure. They were willing to see if replacing the wiring harness would fix the problem, at a cost of at least $1,500. Needless to say, I was not willing to participate in a $1,500 experiment. I got the van back from the dealer, and it started for about a week. Then it did its old trick again. This time, after it sat behind my house for over three weeks, it still would not even turn over.
    Last Saturday, I removed the instrument cluster. To remove the cluster, I had to remove a connector from a socket more or less in the middle of a printed circuit board (PCB) on the back of the instrument cluster. Inside this socket there were pins (at least nine). The solder joints that connect the pins to the PCB circuitry are on the "back" of the PCB. With the naked eye, I could not see any problems with the solder joints around the pins. However, using a strong magnifying glass, I could see small cracks in the solder around the pins. I re-soldered all the joints around the pins, and put the cluster back in the van. The van has been starting flawlessly ever since!!!

    THANK YOU to the folks who posted the information about this fix. I have no idea how somebody found the problem with the solder joints on the PCB, but I am certainly glad they did.
  • I installed a used BCM (exact same P/N) in my T&C and the car would run for a few seconds and then stop. I tried is a few times and it kept doing the same thing. I finally decided to put the old BCM in and the car did the same thng. After 3 attempts at starting and having it die, the car finally would not even turn over. It currently is dead. I need help figureing out what to do.
  • Same here, 2001 GC with no intermittant headlights (low beam on one side, high beam on the other side). I drove from Utah to Washington state for Thanksgiving with a piece of cardboard propped in the signal lever to keep the high beams on so that it would appear as though I had two operational headlights and hopefully avoid a ticket. This morning the headlights are not operating at all, no low beam or high beam. And I am not encouraged at what I am reading.....$1000 or more to fix it enough to get back to Utah and trade it in? Dont think so...I will drive in the daytime.
  • #1 At 8K miles, took to dealer for a screech when turning on ignition and burning smell. No problem found. Dealer "looked under the hood."
    #2-3 At 15K miles, took in on three consecutive days for great deal of trouble starting vehicle. After visit 3, they said there was a "bad cell" in the battery. Car failed to start when I picked it up.
    #4 Left it there from visit #3. No problem found. Dealer told me that the problem was that I didn't know how to start my vehicle.
    #5: Engine malfunction light comes on and starts flashing while on the highway. Car sputters and shakes. Towed to dealer who said "Cam and Crank sensor."
    #5 A week later: same light comes on; car sputters. Drive to dealer. "Evap filter. Changed EGR valve."
    #7 A week later, en route home from Thanksgiving, same light comes on on highway; car sputtering. Towed to dealer 5.5 hours from my home. Rent a car to get home. Call "Customer Service" who declines my request for a buyback, rental reimbursement or to get my vehicle back to me. I pay someone $1000 to drive the rental car back 5.5 hours and bring my car home. Dealer said "Crank and Cam shaft."
    #8 The guy I hire gets 100 miles into the return trip and the same light comes on and car sputters. He drives it to a dealer, now 3.5 hours from home. The car has now been there 5 days and they have no clue what's wrong with it. At this point, Customer Service opens a file and refers me to a case manager.

    Case manager does nothing. Get a different one who tells me she will then she won't give me an equivalent rental car and cover my expenses. The dealer has no idea what's wrong with it. He called Chrysler, who told him to check the transmission--which he had already done. No clue how long the dealer will keep looking before calling the "field advisor." After pressing the Case Manager, she decided to escalate the matter to the Regional Manager who has authorization for a buyback. But my state, Michigan, very unhelpfully gutted most of the lemon law, suggesting that the best I'd do on a buyback offer isn't very good. And mean while, my car remains 3.5 hours away and I have a tiny, inadequate Neon --a loaner from the dealer so my paid driver could get home. If anyone has any ideas, I'd really appreciate it.
  • I have a 98 dodge caravan when i'm driving the battery light comes on and all my lights start flickering. just started doing this yesterday, today when i shut it off a buzzin sound came from underneath the dash. was wondering if anyone has any ideas as to what this could be?
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 11,149
    have you tried to start it again? It sounds to me like your alternator is either under-charging or not charging. The battery light usually indicates low voltage, assuming it is working properly. If the flickering and battery light came on prior to you actually being able to restart the van, then there might be an electrical problem rather than a low battery. The "buzzing" to which you refer is often a relay trying to engage, but having insufficient power to do so.

    Be careful with this one; if it is an alternator, the van could strand you alongside the road somewhere when the last of its juice is squeezed out.
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • thanks i think it is a relay my husband came home and heard the buzzing and wiggled something and it quit and started right up. go figure now he thinks i'm nuts cause it hasn't done it since
  • I have the same problem. Did you find out what was the cause of this problem?

  • It is either the IOD or the BCM modules, both are expensive fixes. I ended up hardwiring the headlights with an inline fuse to the parking lights and it works great. Assuming the parking lights dont go next. After I made the modification, the blower fan for the heat and A/C only works on high. Jeez, always something.
  • The problem with my electrical system and headlights flashing on and off was
    the fuse box underneath the hood. The wiring harness that plugs into the
    fuse box was extremely corroded and needed to be cleaned. I had a local
    mechanic find it out and fix it ($130 well spent) He said he cleaned the
    connections and put dye electric grease on it to prevent corrosion again. I
    think he had to take off the fuse bux to get at the wiring harness... I hope
    this solves your problem also.

  • check engine light was on said something about a short in the torque converter sensor or something but we cleaned the battery post and cables and so far so good check engine light is still on though.
  • I bought this car 10 days ago and three days already it has not started. The first time after I was jump started I took it to the dealer and they said the battery tested fine. The second time, 6 days later they said the battery cable was loose and they tightened it. Today, 3 days later, it didn't start again. It always starts with a jump start but what could be causing it? Has anyone had this problem? Unfortunately the dealer I bought it from is over an hour from me. I took it to a local dealer and they said that until it does it again, they cannot diagnosis it since it seems to be running fine. Something is obviously causing this and it is so frustrating!! I will be taking it back to the dealership tomorrow to leave it with them so they can periodically check it until it does it again.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 11,149
    I had some intermittent problems with one of my vehicles a while back, and it turned out to be a slightly loose connection between the bracket and engine on which the negative battery cable attached to the system. It was just a little loose, but it caused the car to either start fine, or give me nothing. The post where the cable attached to that bracket was just fine.
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • This worked! The light sequence was slightly different than the instructions. After initiating the test, the sequence ran a few minutes, after which the rear wiper button and the rear intermittent button flashed alternately. When it was clear that this would continue indefinitely, I pushed the rear wiper button when it flashed, and the last lights went out. Thanks for providing the fix, and sorry it took me so long to get back to you. This is what the dealership wanted $50 to fix.
  • Ours wouldn't the ones here, and I think we figured ours out. We took the remote door unlockers and put them in a drawer. We use the key far no problems...must be a problem with the security system.
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