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Dodge Stratus Maintenance and Repair

lonevvulf8lonevvulf8 Posts: 1
The car had a dead battery for about 3 months. Before the battery was drained my leaving interior light on. The car had been driven 3 times a week. tThe battery was about 6yrs old, wouldnt take a charge enought to start. I recently replaced the battery, but while the engine turns over, spark plugs fire (checked with a timing light) but vehicle will not start. Is there anything I need to reset and how?


  • dpostdpost Posts: 7
    I am going to pull the head on a 98 Stratus 2.4. Is there anything I need to know that may prove to be tricky. I figure the only problem that I my running to is the timing belt for the DOHC. Any warning, advice or guidance.
  • phastphast Posts: 8
    Just posted a reply on this very topic. See posting by phast dated Feb. 15, 2007.

  • phastphast Posts: 8
    Label every wire you disconnect. To remove the head, first unbolt the exhaust manifold. Replace all head bolts with a new set available from parts store. Ensure you use the metal composite gasket (use spray gasket sealer). Be careful with the cam positioner (gaskets), after pulling head, DO remove and inspect the exhaust manifold for cracks - VERY Likely! replace the front O2 sensor, or bench check. It will be covered with black soot. New timing belt and tensioner (sold as a kit), and take your time setting the timing as it may require several attempts to get it right.....If done right, I wouldn't be surprised if you spin the front tires..... by mistake of course! Hope this helps.
  • dpostdpost Posts: 7
    I replaced the head gasket... My god it was time consuming. I will say this get the multi layer head gasket it is the the recommended. Also remove the head with the exhaust manifold attached just disconnect the pipe below. Much easy job that way. Be careful with the plastic shroud and covers by timing belt. If you destroy the covers the dealer will make purchase the new and improved tensioner and cover $210.00. We purchased the old grenade pin type tensioner $50.00 part store. I had a mechanic friend set the timing belt because if you pull the pin and its wrong then the the tensioner is useless. Its a one time shot. We got it right the first time. Also use the gasket spray sealer (gold color) on the gasket prior to setting it down. I replaced all belts and all hoses to include heater hoses that go in the back.

    It is running like a top........... NO LEAKS....
  • dpostdpost Posts: 7
    Also I replaced the water pump if the pump goes out you have to get another tensioner because the water pump is driven by the timing belt. REPLACE the Water Pump.
  • dpostdpost Posts: 7
    In reference to phast comment about the tensioner and the blet come together as a kit. This is true if you buy from the dealer. Keep in mind you have to purchase the new shroud or plastic covers for that the new tensioner from dealer is a different design and the new covers only match the new tensioner design. Plastic cover/shroud design $210.00 and tensioner and belt from dealer $180.00 So into it for 400.00 from the dealer if you go with new design. I bought a goodyear belt for like $20.00 and the old style original type tensioner for $52.00 from a parts store. I also cracked the plastic shroud/cover but after getting dealers price on all those replacement parts I got a small fiberglass kit and neatly fiberglassed the cracked areas and used a knife and a little sand paper to get rid of rough edges. Total investment with fiberglas kit and original tensioner and belt replacement from parts store $85.00. And it runs like a top 6 weeks later still no problems.
  • dpostdpost Posts: 7
    After 7 weeks of no problems I now I noticed it it leaking. A small leak on back corner of block to the ground and oil it is weeping to the in the water. Appears to be oil in water and no water in the oil(crankcase). I realize this is a NO Retorque gasket but could it be a torque issue after 1500 miles. The other vehciles that require retorque say after 1000 miles retorque. WILL I Hurt this engine if I check the torque? It would be easier to check the torque than to pull the head off.
  • dpostdpost Posts: 7
    We didn't retorque after several mechanic friends telling the head gasket appeared to be installed correctly. We found an additional problem tranny fluid seeping into collant we replaced the radiator it is fixed
  • dpost I have a 99 stratus 2.4L and I have oil in my coolant reservoir.Can this be caused by a bad headgasket?I read while searching for more info that oil in the coolant tank(no coolant in engine oil,or transmission) can only be caused by a leaking radiator? Is that correct?It sounds like thats what happened to you with the tranny fluid.
  • I do not have a manual and I need to find the name of this part quickly because I need to budget and price compare. I am looking for the name of a part on my car that connects to water resevoir, radiator, has a brass release valve on top, and sensor. It has went bad and I cannot find the name of it to price compare. Thanks!
  • I got a 2006 Stratus, put the pedal to the metal a couple of times because it was slow on pickup going onto highway. Sooo now the mileage is poor, 22 mpg and I am wondering, did I harm the engine?/ no engine lights just poor mileage. I think I got about 28 mpg first fillup
  • I will let you know one of the tricks of the trade to a 16 valve DOHC should use at least 89 grade octane as gasoline to give that extra boost and just maybe your gas miles. As, you might notice that a Stratus is rated to get only 22-23 miles to the gallon anyway. :blush:
  • I have a 94 Jeep Grand Cherokee, and my CPS unit was starting to bad, and my car would crank, but not turn over. Have you had the car put on a computer to test it?
    My problem happened sporadically, and not all the time either. but I did notice that it happened more often when the outside temp was hot, and I had been driving my car for awhile. Even if I parked it and let it "cool down" some, it still would not kick over unless I waited about another 30 minutes.
    the CPS unit is notorious for going out after about 150k miles. I have a V6 4.0L engine, and it is a hard working engine, but computer parts will wear out eventually and that means no kicking over....just a thought........
  • The part is the coolant air bleeder. My wife car had the same thing go bad, you will find it here..Hope that helps..
  • My '97 Stratus with the DOHC 2.4 engine had the head gasket replaced. Since that time the coolant temp has never gotten into the normal range it use to. It never reaches even half way up the scale on the temp gage. Normal operation of the engine has not seemed to be affected. Although, during the winter you never do get "hot" air from the heater, just warm. I've tried putting in a new thermostat and that did not fix it. Any ideas on what to trouble shoot?
  • I am looking for the location of the oil pressure switch and the heater blower resistor. I need to replace both, and I'm not sure where they are located. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
  • spokane3spokane3 Posts: 2
    My daughter just called and said her car would not start. It doesn't turn over but may make a ticking sound. I recommended that she try tapping on the starter with a tire iron. Unfortunately, she doesn't know what the starter looks like and I don't know where a starter is at on her car. As she lives 1400 miles away I'm not running over to help her. Any help?
  • foxyfoxyfoxyfoxy Posts: 2
    I have 1998 jeep cherokee 2.5TD I need to change the oil pressure switch can some one tell me where it is on the engine
  • foxyfoxyfoxyfoxy Posts: 2
    where can I get work shop manual for the 2.5Td engine
  • ileinilein Posts: 1
    I have Dodge Stratus 2.4L 1995. It can,t be started.There is a fuel and current (I change the battery )I have a sound whistle, lights, but my radio does not work.When I try to start it happen nothing.
    So what should the problem is.
  • i hve black sludge in my coolant resevoir, any ideas please help
  • 1997 Dodge Stratus w/2.4 non-turbo.

    Bought this car and on the way home it got hot and would not restart. I have found water in the oil and oil in one of the cylinders. I have pulled the head and might see signs of a head gasket leak, but minor. What else causes LOTS of oil in the water and maybe 1 pint of oil in one cylinder?

  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,042
    Since this problem isn't specific to the Stratus, I suggest you try posting your question in our Answers section - i know a lot of mechanically-inclined members stop by there.


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  • timing belts!!! Why do they keep breaking? I have already put 5 on my car.
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