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Dodge Dakota: Problems & Solutions



  • sunburnsunburn Posts: 319
    Yes, I have used dielectric grease on the coil boots. Also, the noise is a crackling sound, not a whining sound. When the weather warms up again, I'll check the engine grounds. It is an intermittent sound. This morning, it didn't do it. Also, when it does do it, it sounds aperiodic. So, it doesn't appear to happen everytime a particular coil/plug fires.
  • jnealjneal Posts: 247
    I'm assuming from your previous post that you hadn't noticed this noise before you changed the plugs. What is the mileage on your truck?
    I agree with bpeebles about the grounding system but could still be a coil or plug, most likely a coil if that is where the problem is. A coil, if arcing intermittently, wouldn't be noticable as a dead miss in one cylinder would. Look at the engine running after dark and see if you can see any arcing. Also pull the plugs and examine them carefully and see if you see any evidence one of them is misfiring.
  • I have the same problem and Bro, I don't know about you but, I didn't pay for a new vehicle that shakes and wobbles! I am EXTREMELY P.O'ed.!!! I am being told that I can claim the Lemon Law which I am strongly considering unless, thay come up with a solution. The bad thing is that they have to log a certain number of complaints before they will do something about it!
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    After re-reading your posts, I am thinking that one of your coils may be arcing around the base near the sparkplug.

    Also, perhaps the shape of the insulators on your new sparkplugs is not "sealing well" on the ends of the coils.

    Pull each of the coils off and look for carbon-traces. Perhaps even hand-fit one of the sparkplugs to a coil to see how well the seal fits.

    Thoroughly wipe clean the plug insulators and coils with IPA (IsoPropal Alchoal) incase there is some kind of conductive coating you cannot see.
  • jnealjneal Posts: 247
    Bpeebles, I haven't had any experience with this type of ignition system until I bought 06 Dak. Perhaps I am still stuck in the old days but don't really like the coil on plug system.
    Has there been much of an issue with arcing/misifring etc?
    Haven't noticed many problems posted on the forums but really curious about the system.
    What has been your experience with this type ignition?

    DustyK, You can weigh in on this question also.
  • I now have 2 of my 4 power windows on my quad cab quit. It turns out there is a little plastic piece that has broken. The dealer says that I need the entire window regulator assembly at over $300 each. Any suggestions on alternatives.

    I've heard of this problem before from my mechanic and I really don't want to go to a wrecker when I'm not sure of how much life will be left in the part.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I have been following the 4.7L engine since it was first introduced on the 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee. I have a 2000 Dak that is the very first year the Dak had the 4.7L.

    The COP (Coil On Plug) system on the 4.7L has been VERY reliable. Yours is the very first time I have heard of any issues at all. (And I am still not convinced that yours is an issue with COP system)

    This technology is another step in the evilution of the ignition system. (I used to change points and condensers!!)
    The COP system eliminates another weear-item from the ignition system (High-voltage ignition wires). It also allows the onboard computer to INDIVIDUALLY CONTROL the spark timing of each cylinder. Sparkplugs last about 50,000 miles too.

    You may not realize that the 3.7L v6 is just the 4.7L with 2 cylinders lopped off. This means that the same design of COP is used across the DC (Damlier Chrysler) line of automobiles.

    Most other automakers also use a COP ignition system.

    Your concerns remind me of a guy I knew that purchased a "special edition" Chevy Camaro back in the 80s with fuel-injection (before fuel-injection was widely used) Although he had no problems with it, he stripped off all the fuel-injection and installed a carberator..... about 5,000 miles later, the engine siezed up! (He had it tuned too lean)

    If you look back further in automotive history, People were also skeptical of electric starters, automatic chokes and many other technologal changes. (Yes, I know people that replaced automatic chokes with a manual one...but I was not around when electric starters were introduced)
  • jnealjneal Posts: 247
    Thanks for the reply,bpeebles. Perhaps I should have phrased my concerns a bit differently than saying I don't like the COP system. More like being skeptical of things that you have had no experience with.

    I see where this system would be better than previous ignition systems, especially since I too came up in the points/condenser days.

    I knew I had seen very few problems on any of the forums dealing with this system so was looking for your input as I know you are very knowledgeable about automotive technology.

    Thanks for the reply,
  • bookittybookitty Posts: 1,303
    Bruce, and how about drivers who haven't as yet accepted automatic transmissions?

  • jnealjneal Posts: 247
    Now,Now, Bookitty...I got over the manual transmission bit in my 30's when I got lazy!! :P (Right after I got a government job!
  • mnallmnall Posts: 8
    I called and filed a complaint to dodge about the vibration in my truck on there 800 number. There not real friendly on the telephone either.
  • So, any failed power windows out there? No aftermarket?
  • sunburnsunburn Posts: 319
    Thanks for the help everyone. When the weather warms up a bit, I'll pull the coils and check everything out. Interestingly, it hasn't made any noise the past two days.
  • sunburnsunburn Posts: 319
    I've noticed over the past couple of weeks that when I come to a stop for more than about 15 seconds, I get a faint gasoline type smell from the HVAC system. As long as I'm moving, it doesn't happen. When I switch to recirculated air, it goes away. So, it's coming from the outside of the truck.

    I've looked under the hood while its running, and I don't smell any gas type odors, nor do I see any signs of leakage around the fuel injectors or the fuel rails. There's no sign of leakage on the ground.

    I've thought about a leak in the evaporative emissions system, but that tends to cause a check engine light, which I don't have. About the only thing I haven't done is inspect the fuel lines from the tank to the engine.

    Granted, a couple of drops of gas will go a long way towards stinking things up, so it could be something very small. I just don't want my Dak to burst into flames one day.

    What do the resident experts think? Thanks.
  • brekobreko Posts: 2
    any clues on this one, driving down the hwy at 65 mph and the engine just shuts down.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    suspect the in-tank fuel pump may be crapping out. (technical term ;-)
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    (Bookitty) NOPE! I havent "accepted" automatic xmissions. Most the world (outside North America) use Manual xmissions.

    I keep up with the various technologies (Recall that I work in the computer-chip manufacturing industry) and I have read VERY good things about the DSG automatic xmissions as sold by VW/Audi.

    The DSG xmission has been called an "automatic manual xmission". It contains 2 seperate geartrains each with an eectronically-controled clutch. The "next" gear is pre-enguaged and the clutches "swap" between the gears with lightning speed. It is the FIRST automaticly-shifting xmission that gets better MPG than a manual.

    The DSG xmission is the very same technology that is used on F1 race cars with the "paddle shifters" on the steering wheel. The gear-changes are instantanious.

    It has been said that this kind of xmission signals the end of the old "slushbox" automatics due to the better efficency. (Virtually no slippage)
  • brekobreko Posts: 2
    this is what I replaced so far and checked, replaced coil and pick up coil and distributer cap, after truck ran for a 30min it shut down and there was no spark, currently the computer board was sent in and was being tested, board on way back and was tested for 10 hours, and tested out ok, board is now on its way back hopefully I will have it back by Monday, I just changed today engine crank sensor but wont know till I get the board back. If there is anything else to try let me know, also once the engine has cooled it starts back up only to shut off after 20 to 30 min of running. fuel pump was tested and ran 39 pounds of pressure.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    It sounds like you are headed the right direction with troublshooting the problem. Certainly that crank-position sensor could have been the problem... we shall find out once you get the 'puter back.

    By your description of the problem, it sounds as if somthing heat related with the ignition system. I can offer some "tricks -n- techniques" that are commonly used in the electrontics industry to locate thermal issues.

    You can use a "heat gun" (hair dryer) to heat up specific components and see if the engine quits. Alternatly, you can use "canned coolant" spray that is designed to cool off electronic components by spraying them.

    The above techniques may help you isolate the problem instead of just "shotgunning" the problem by replacing things until the problem goes away.

    Also, If you have any experinece with DVM (Digital Volt Meter) or oscillascope, you could actually TROUBLESHOOT the problem to find the failing component.
  • Has anyone had this problem ? Have one leaking, Parts house does not offer replacement
    This thing must be a blem did a search hear and only one post about heater core Leak.

    Anyone know how hard to get it out ?

    Can it be repaired a rad Shop ? Rather have a New one !!!

    Thanks Jon
  • Has anyone had this problem ? Have one leaking, Parts house does not offer replacement
    This thing must be a blem did a search here and only one post about heater core Leak.

    Anyone know how hard to get it out ?

    Can it be repaired a rad Shop ? Rather have a New one !!!

    Thanks Jon
  • sunburnsunburn Posts: 319
    My 02 has a very small leak in the heater core. Just enough to smell it when you first turn on the fan, but goes away after 15-20 sec. The core is about $200 from the dealer. It's like a 6-7 hr job to replace. The whole underside of the dash must be disassembled. The AC system must also be evacuated. I've had quotes of about $600-$800 to do it, including the part. I suspect that the part is plastic and aluminum, so it probably isn't repairable, depending on where the leak is. Any decent shop should be able to replace it, although the mechanic that gets stuck with it may forever hate you.
  • jnealjneal Posts: 247
    Recall Date:
    FEB 09, 2006
    Potential Units Affected:
  • ja812ja812 Posts: 33
    Ron, what store did you find BGK 44k at? I'm in Michigan and the only places that have BG products are car dealers who only sell the services.
  • dad4dad4 Posts: 4
    Just a note, at least as applied to 1997 Dakota, the caliper bolt threads were British Fine (BSF). Had difficult time finding so ordered off web.

    Replacement thread coil worked fine.
  • A week after they replace the axles I notice a quarter size spot on my driveway. It seems that the tech managed to rip the head off one of the rear diff bolts. Well we all know when something isn't sealeed correctly. Nice work eh? Shaking is gone though.

    Truck alignmnet was also not fixed first time. This time they over correct the problem and truck pulls left. Truck just feels out of balance. Tires have been rotated and balanced. Maybe it's the wheels and/or tires themselves.

    Back to Ford?
  • I HAVE A 95 DODGE DAKOTA. I need some help replacing a broken passager window.... Can ANY ONE OUT THERE HELP..
  • The COP system you describe above might explain why I can't FIND the plugs in my 2004 Dakota with the 4.7 V8! I bought some new platinum plugs today to dutifully replace the plugs at the prescribed 30K miles. I see what looks like the COP system attached to tubes that disappear into the manifold. If I remove that, will I find the spark plugs inside those tubes? Where's the spark plug wires? :(
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    There are NO SPARKPLUG WIRES on the 4.7L. Each sparkplug has its own coil fitted directly on it....thus COP (Coil On Plug)

    To replace the sparkplugs, follow this procedure for each plug. (you may have to remove intake plenum to access some plugs)

    1)remove electrical connector and holddown screw
    2)gently pull the coil out of the hole.
    3)Remove old sparkplug
    5)Install new plug and torque to specification
    6)Apply LIGHT coating of silicone grease on rubber seals of coil. (one seal where coil fits over sparkplug insulator and the other is an o-ring where the coil seals to cylinder-head.)
    7)re-install coil, screw and connector.
    [REPEAT 8 times]

    While you are under the hood.... make sure there are NO wires nor hoses lying on the valve-covers. The valve-covers of the 4.7L engine are MAGNESIUM to reduce the weght of the engine... but magnesum is kinda soft so vibration can can wear a hole right thru it. (This warning is right in the factory service manual)
  • Thanks much for the great directions! :)

    I have a service manual on order, but don't have it yet. You wouldn't happen to know the torque specs for the plugs, would you?

    Thanks in advance for the info!
This discussion has been closed.