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Dodge Durango Starting and Stalling Problems

tec3btec3b Posts: 1
We've been experiencing some odd starting problems-- If anyone could help, or is experiencing the same problem I'd love to hear about it. For most of the summer every other time we start it, it makes a loud screeching noise. This is usually with just the first start of the day, then throughout the rest of the day it is usually fine. A couple of times when it was really bad I saw smoke coming out from under the hood. I left it sit a few hours and came back and it started like there was never a problem.

Our mechanic has not heard the noise it makes, thought it must be the starter and replaced it. Well, just picked it up and it is doing the same darn thing. Would have left it, but need it to tow this weekend. It is not the battery, it sounds like it wants to start, but just doesn't turn over. Again, this is usually every other morning or so. We may even go a week where it is fine, then it starts doing it every other day again. Most times it will start on the second or third try, but two times, it left me sit... Any suggestions would be appreciated, as I'm in $400. and still having problems. Thanks!


  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Have your mechanic check the belts.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • starlastarla Posts: 2
    I have 1999 Dodge Durango and we have been having the same starting issue for about 2-2 1/2 yrs and it has gotten worse. When I try to start is clicks, like the starter has went out, but it will eventually start or it may start without doing it. I thought it might be the starter but I thought then it wouldn't start if it was. We didn't want to replace the starter if it could be another problem. It also isn't the battery. Does any one have any ideas or suggestions?
  • I have the exact same problem. Sometimes it clicks then after a few times then it starts as normal. Here's what has happened when it started. I notices several sensor lights would stay on if I just started it up. If I just turn the key and let it go through the cycle and then start the car the lights would be off. Then the starting problem happens. Not a clue what it is. Trying to find out now. Seems like a computer problem.
  • I have a 2005 durango5.7.I noticed the other day one of the keys were not working properly.It would unlock/lock but when you would start vehicle it would run for 3 sec than shut off. My other key works fine. I was wondering if anybody had an idea on how to reprogram the key in question without taking it to the dealer?

  • I had the same issue. Drove me crazy. In the end all I had to do was replace the battery cables and terminals. About a $10 fix. Haven't had a problem since, and has been over six months.
  • It likely is not your starter. I had the same issue. Start by replacing your battery cables and terminals. That should do the trick. The clicking occurs when the battery does not have a good enough connection.
  • :confuse: I have a 1999 dodge durango and I was having that problem that it would drive good for a couple of days starting up and than after a couple of days I had to get a jump for it to start mechanic told me it was the starter so I ended up replacing that and now it still doing the same thing it acts like it not going to turn over but it does and then I have to reset the time and everything as if the battery was taken out and replace so when you get a answer please let me know
  • well try this the tensioner pulley sometimes it gets a bit loose and when you start the engine it pulls the band so hard but once the pulley gets warm it sets back to its normal tension so try changing that and new belt
  • manda6manda6 Posts: 1
    My Durango won't start it just clicks Im 3 starters in and nothing it just clicks I've replaced the battery and terminals and it's still just clicking anybody have any suggestions?
  • Hi, ok my sister has a 1999 durango and the battery keeps draining on it. Also when i do jump it or get it started, if i dont keep giving it gas it wont stay on. Going from P to R then againd R - D, now when im out driving it after i let it warmup i can sit at a red light and it doesnt stall out... the battery doesnt seem to be draining while the engine is running, ive test the battery its good. Could somebody please help me help her so i may be done with this.. thank you very much
  • I have a 2001 Durango. When the car sits overnight or after it has been sitting for a couple hours it takes 5-8 seconds of cranking before it starts. I do not have this problem if it has been running, ie if i drive it, turn it off and turn it back on, no problem. Dealer told me to replace fuel pump module. This did not fix the problem. any other suggestions?
  • I have a 2004 with the exact same problem. They had to run an update to the anti theft devise. Fixed the problem.

    I hope this helps.

  • So, did yours after hours of sitting there just not crank. I have the same issue and my mechanic tells me it is the computer...ok... we get another one STILL not working then he says it is something to do with the anti theft? The dude is clueless! How did they do an update to the anti theft and how much was it?
  • How do we tow our vehicle in? 99 dodge durango. Front or rear or does it matter?
  • I bought this 2002 Durango 5.9 Magnum engine - 4 months ago with 81,000 miles on it, I put just over 4,000 since. It was running great, one day though, and this is my own fault, I ran out of gas.

    Since then this truck stalls without any warning while driving. It;s happened more then I can count! I replaced the fuel cap, I heard it could be a sensor, fuel pump, filter - I noticed that the gages aren't quite accurate either.

    I had all of the fuses checked, even replaced relays, the battery is new and its not the starter, the truck DOES want to start, its as if no fuel is getting to it. I am aware that the fuel pump is built into the gas tank, I also am aware that when I ran it out of gas, its possible that the pump probably got clogged due to drawing off from the bottom of the tank.

    Yesterday, it ran great - no problems at all in any way. Today, I made it 1/4 down my road and it shut off on me. Never re-fired. In the past I disconnected the battery to clear the codes (it only has one code it does list - P0455 evap.) but when I connected the battery back, it fired right up. Yesterday though, one of the reasons it ran well, was because I was in stop and go traffic, at crawling speed and I took the OD off -I then noticed it idled higher at stops and no hesitations either (sometimes when I am stopped it feels or sounds like it is hesitating or may stall)

    I never took it out of OD before, just briefly yesterday - but today I've had it! It would not refire for nothing AND there was no antifreeze in it! No visible leaks but I had a gallon in the truck and added it immediately when it first shut down on me.

    This is unsafe, it scares me. I know it needs to get to a reliable Dodge dealer (not the place I bought it from ugghh!) but for now it's here at my home. Like I said, ever since I ran it out of gas and put crap gas in just to get to a close gas station this stalling problem started and it will not restart for several minutes, sometimes an hour - today it never did re-fire. The engine light comes on at times then goes off, but once I had it filled with Premium which I usually put in there and the low fuel indicator/warning light came on!

    I can't keep having this happen when I leave my home, I just lost my younger brother, its been a terrible time in my family and I need this issue corrected. Please, does anyone have any ideas? Could it be the fuel pump or filter? and yes, oil changes have been up to par (routine maintenance) - but this is frightening. Please help!
  • The shutting off and not starting for several minutes is possibly your computer (sorry) Basically the pcm shuts down and cools off then will restart. Many people wiggle the wire at the PCM and found ti will re-start. Dodge put a bad computer in these model durangos and will not recall it despite thousands and thousands with the same issue.

    You can possibly find one online much cheaper though that has been flashed for you.

    The coolant leaking out not sure about. It could be a leak in a hose, radiator etc...
  • I have a 1998 durango the battery went dead ,we charged battery now all it does is spin over it want fire up. the gas gauge and radio isnt working
  • Thank you for your reply..........I have called a few Dodge Dealerships in the area (for the record, the dealership that I bought this from wasn't a Dodge dealership and......let's just say that I doubt that the techs there could put a "Mr. Potato Head" together, let alone fixing a vehicle)

    Needless to say, the service guys I did speak with about this from Dodge seemed baffled, one DID suggest it could be the PCM also,.......obviously unless they put it on the computer to properly diagnose, they simply aren't sure either........

    BUT - see what you think about this,... LOL - I have to laugh here cuz the year I've had, which was not good - I also lost my only brother unexectedly too, so its just been a difficult time for me in pretty much all aspects ................ about my Durango, over the holiday I had a surprise visit from a neighbor of mine, who is in the military, he's very, very high in rank, and has to ship out once again to the Middle East in a couple of weeks, I haven't seen him in a year when he was here last, and it was wonderful to see him again especially beings he's being deployed.....but he's always been great with cars/trucks etc -

    He also has a Durango 2002 but never had the probs I am. He asked me "Does the truck have gas? It sounds like its not getting any fuel." ( I did attempt to start it for him) - the battery is brand new, the truck does want to "fire up" - I started with the little things, and before I spend an arm and a leg at a dealership and possible towing fees in order to take it to a dealer) I am trying everything......

    Had a plumber at my home last month, my water heater was leaking severly and I thought based on the age of the water heater I currently have that I'd need a new one - BUT come to find out, it was a $3.00 screw that needed to be replaced - and it never has leaked since, - thankfully this guy was honest, any other plumber would've probably have me install a new one and all in all, it didn't need to be replaced............. So hopefully my truck issue is a minor one........

    Ok - here it goes,................ I am new to Dodge, I've owned Fords all my life, I have a Mustang GT - their gas tanks are small compared to the SUV's, and I've had my GT on the red-line, sometimes beyond and not once did I run it out - sometimes I threw just $2.00 in it and gauge moved up way above the red-line -

    The last time I ran my truck, I had between a quarter and a half-tank in it - it stalled out on the part of my street that is a bit of a an up-hill area, - I had a friend push it home and its been here since, I replaced the batteries in the remote, the computer programmed and the fuel light came on...... I put 3 gallons of gas in since this thing quit on me, BUT from what I've been being told lately is that it may need more gas in order to start. For my Mustang GT 3gallons easily would start that car - but could THIS be the case??? The ONLY other times it stalled on me was when it was near or a bit below the 1/4 tank mark in the gauge, but the gas light didn't come on, however once I threw a ton of gas in it, it fired right up.

    IF NOT,............where is the wiring for the PCM? Just curious........tomorrow I am trying to add much more gas in it, and if it still doesn't fire then Monday it will get towed to the dealer -

    If you have any further advice or ideas, please let me know - thank you!
  • Was wiring in a used master switch for the power windows/locks. Heard a click/spark. Tried to turn the vehicle on and it would only run for a few seconds and die. Now it will not even turn over. Checked the fuses and relays. There is still pressure in the fuel line so I do not think it is the fuel pump. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
  • mikezrmikezr Posts: 5
    If it shuts off again look at your mileage and see if 'no bus' comes in that window. If so it is your PCM unfortunately That is how I found out why mine shut off so much. Many disconnect the battery for about five minutes and it starts back up but that doesn't work for all. It has to cool down before it starts again.

    Another thing it could be is the coil. Try having that checked out too.

    Good luck,.
  • kym625kym625 Posts: 1
    Okay so I had my starter changed about 3 weeks ago. Since then it ran fine for about a week. It was low on gas, but not completely empty when the starter went out. Now when I go to start it i have to pump the gas most times to get it started. When it does start I have to hold on the gas for a min or two to keep it running. Then slowly let off the gas and it runs fine. We did change the terminals on the battery and don't know our next move to make. Today when I drove it it did stall out on me and then started again and drove fine. I don't get it? If anyone has some advice i would appreciate it.
  • I hope you have fixed before now, but if you haven't your electrical system is being drained by a minor short somewhere. remove all unnecessary fuse's and relay's to item's such as power windows, seats, radio, power outlets etc... If the power loss and resetting of your pulse width to your fuel injector's keep's happening you have a serious problem in your wiring harness under the hood. let me explain the stalling out or chattering of the Auto Shut down relay is do to power loss and computer/securtiy confusion.
    the computer teach's itself when started the first 3 time's after a new battery is installed, what the pulse width of the fuel injector's should be. so even if you have free'd the shorted wire you still think you have a problem because the vehicle won't stay running. It will but you must start and feather gas pedal several time's for it to reteach itself. Finding the short is your next primary goal. Putting an Amp meter inline with the battery with engine off ignition off and seeing the amp draw, and removing fuse's and relay's one at a time untill the amp draw goes away is the normal technique. remember do not turn key on or start engine as this may damage your voltage or multi-meter, when using it as an amperage probe.
  • Hi, I left the country for 3 months, and left my Durango 2001 to sit in the garage (hot central California) for 3 months with about an 1/8 of a tank of gas. When I came home, of course the battery was dead. I got a jump and it ran ok until I stopped somewhere, then I had to jump it again, now, it stalls when in idle, and must always have my foot on the pedal to keep it running. I'm charging battery now, but don't know what to look for about the stalling problem. It was running perfect before I left the country. Please tell me what to do and how to check it. I am a woman and I need to find a mechanic that I can trust.
  • camp8camp8 Posts: 10
    My 2000 Durango has always gone through batteries rather quick. Last time I bought one from walmart with a 3 year free replacement guarantee. Now it won't start, either clicks or nothing at all. Took the battery back to walmart, they said the battery is still good, and the problem is probably corrosion on the + connection on starter coming from battery. They said it is a common problem on dodges. Is this true? I haven't found anything about this on internet searches.
  • Good evening,
    While looking for a solution to my problem I ran across yours and can offer you some help. To start I've been rebuilding cars most of 50 years as both a hobby and part time profession. So my suggestions are unbiased and as honest as possible. I hate to see people get scammed by dishonest mechanics. So I will give you some incite on several ideas about why your having these problems. Because you let your vehicle sit in a hot climate with only 1/8th of a tank of fuel is not really a good thing. Because of the change in temps from hot to cold day and night you have most likely caused the fuel in the tank and in your fuel lines to loose both octane and evaporate causing the fuel to build up a kind of tarnish in your system.
    This could include your fuel injectors. The cheapest solution would be to go to an auto parts store or a Wal-Mart and purchase a can of "Sea Foam" fuel line treatment. Don;t let anyone talk you in to buying a cheaper brand. sea Foam is exclusive in marine applications and works very well and very quickly to clean out your fuel system. Prior to filling your tank with gas pour in the entire can of Sea Foam. then add as much gas as you need to bring the tank to about 3/4 full. Do not fill it all the way up. Leaving the Sea Foam in a more concentrated state it will not dilute it as much as a full tank would.
    This will make it work faster in your system. I would also suggest you purchase a higher octane gas than the cheapest 87 octane fuel you can buy. A mid grade 89 or high test 93 octane will also work better as the first tank in your Durango since it has been stored. After you use up that tank you should see a marked improvement in your idle and stalling should totally subside. If it still is giving your trouble but running better try repeating the process with the sea foam a second time before taking it to a garage you don't know or trust. Depending on how it was stored it may take two cleanings. If you have to store it again for any length of time I would suggest that you buy a bottle of "Staybil" here is a link so you know what it is.
    I would also consider having a battery disconnect switch installed in your durango. when your ready to go out of town I would park it in it's final storage location and then use the disconnect switch to disconnect the battery from the vehicle and the computer. This way the battery will not drain down while your gone. You might want to purchase a small 2-3 amp battery charger/conditioner that can be left on the battery while your away.
    This will keep it charged up so when you return all you need to do is turn the disconnect switch back on and start the vehicle. You will have to reset your radio stations and your clock. But those are minor to spending several hundred dollars to just get your Durango running again. I hope this helps you out. If you need further help drop me an email at and I'll do my best to make sure you don't get scammed by a local garage.
    God bless,
    Alex W.
    Roanoke, VA
    (ps: please forgive any spelling errors. It's been a very long day for me.)
  • I have a 2000 Dodge Durango and recently I have been having some issue. The first on I had was the battery being drained within a matter of a few hours. The problem ended up being the relay on my rear defroster fixed it and that problem was solved. After I fixed it I started have blocks around the gears in my console the bottom arrow is completely gone and I have no clue to why it happen. The more important issue is the stalling when I first drive it, it is fine if I make a stop and start using it again it starts to stall after a few miles whenever I use the brake and sometime if im taking a turn. It always starts up fine and it doesn't make and usual noise or anything else to indicate any issue. I am completely stumped.

    Any help would be greatly appciated thanks.
  • I purchased my 2002 Dodge Durango in the summer of 2009. 5.9, SLT - fully loaded to the max, I also even added flowmasters and thru in a KN filter. Beautiful truck!! BUT...(and I paid for cash for it also) - This SUV spent more time on a flat-bed getting towed then it did on the road with me behind the wheel. It would not start - I had to replace the PCM (computer) cost me over $900.00 -the magnetic pickup later on went, and of course, the thing would not start or it would stall without warning on the roadways!! Shortly after I fixed those issues, the radiator went entirely. I had this truck for nearly 3yrs and I only put 4,000 miles on it. The rest of the time it was broke, wouldn't run or was on a flat-bed being towed.

    *** Listen up fellow RAM OWNERS *** On May 22, 2011 I was driving to the corner store just to get some milk, 6:40pm on a Sunday evening. From my house to where the intersection meets is less than 1/4 of a mile...I made a right turn and proceeded to this little store .3 (tenths) of a mile away. I NEVER MADE IT. The last thing I remember was the gas light had went on, I knew I could make it to and from that store then get gas in the a.m. Instead, the very next thing I knew I was being placed into the passenger seat, because they could not cut me out of the truck. EMTs were at the driver's door assisting me, Firemen and another EMT were in the back seat also assisting. I looked out of my windshield, I could see the black paint,............well the black hood all crinkled up and I asked "What happened." Then I heard an EMT say "Helicopter" and another yelled for a "backboard." -

    As I was driving and not going over 40 miles an hr, it was impossible to do the store I was heading to was yards away - however, the front axle broke while I was driving, the hub, tire arm/rod - the whole package came apart while I was driving without ANY warning whatsoever. NO vibrations - the steering wheel didn't vibrate, shake -the tires ....NONE of those things indicated such a traumatic accident was seconds away from occuring. When the front end snapped, the truck fell forward straight into the asphalt of the road I was driving on, then the airbags deployed, the truck then went out of control, crossed the oncoming lane, went off the road hit 3 trees, 2 telephone poles and into someone's house -HEAD ON. THANKFULLY NO ONE WAS INJURED!!!!!! To top it off, I was knocked out for nearly 11 mins....and get this, which is a Blessing............I DID NOT HEAR A SOUND, I WAS NOT CONSCIOUS DURING THE ENTIRE CRASH, - in fact, the very next day I was trying to figure out where I crashed at, I even had friends drive down certain roads nearby looking for the remains of this viscious crash I endured. BUT no one could find it. Then I got the newspaper and there it was, in full color on the front page along with the exact location and details of the accident ---- it was my truck. If it weren't for that paper I wouldn't of known where I wrecked at (yes I would've of course eventually but I wanted to know right then and at that very moment!)

    I was not flown in a helicopter thankfully- just wisked away on a backboard and neck collar, not even on a stretcher, a backboard with 6 guys carrying me to an awaiting ambulance. It was as if I was in a war-zone. FORTUNATELY --------I WAS OK, I ONLY SUSTAINED AN UPPER THIGH HEMOTOMA, AND THEN WAS DIAGNOSED WITH AN UPPER THIGH HERNIA - (the top of my left thigh hit the bottom of the steering wheel hard as heck, in fact the bruising was so bad that it bled thru my skin, and I literally had to wipe it with a damp cloth time to time. The air bags did work thankfully, I had not a single scratch on my face, no neck or back injuries etc -

    Long story short..............My Durango had 29 recalls on it!!!! 6 of them were for the front end!! The axle, tire-arm/rod, the hub etc - and it states "may cause the driver to suddenly lose control of the vehicle resulting in a motor vehicle crash." I have done my home work, and yes I have legal counsel also that I retained. I want my money back that I paid for the truck,........3 yrs prior, I lost my only brother unexpectedly he was 31 yrs old...... I am bringing his passing up because - yes these trucks have recalls on them,......BIG cannot recall a life. NOR buy it back either. I want Dodge to do as Toyota did when the throttle on their cars had that sticking issue, Toyota went public, they admitted the problem and urged -in fact strongly urged customers that if they own that particular make of Toyota to bring it to the dealership and it would be corrected free of charge. Hey - if something is broke or recalled long as they fix it, - then fine, I dont' care, I wouldn't of cared BUT I NEVER WAS NOTIFIED ABOUT ANY OF THE RECALLS THE DURANGO HAD and guess what fellow RAM lovers..........ALL MODELS - DODGE DURANGOS YRS 1998-2005 ARE ALL RECALLED FOR THE EXACT REASONS WHY I LISTED ABOVE!!! SO ARE THE RAM PICKUPS, MINIVANS, DAKOTAS....ETC........ My truck was evaluated by the National Transportation Safety Board, someone came from Washington D.C. to take a look at my Durango. AND if any of you would like to see photos of my truck, kindly email me or reply here and I will send you a few photos. BTW - just google the make, yr and model of your Dodge, see for won't believe the pages and pages of recalls on these things!!!! They are a death trap and or one in the making.....Please be careful, get your's looked at and research this - this is not a joke, I am just trying to help those of you who do not know about this and/or all of the recalls the trucks have.

    be careful - do your research -and unfortunately, Dodge won't say a damn thing about it, (YET ANYWAY BUT THEY WILL!!!) there also have been fatalities due to the problem I listed above that caused my crash. I loved that truck BUT NEVER EVER AGAIN will I drive one!!!

    if you would like to see photos, respond here and I will gladly show you the pictures I have of my Durango. (thankfully the airbags weren't recalled!!!)
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    First off, was it a 4wd or 2wd? What was the mileage?
    Actually, many of us do have a clue about this. The problem on some first generation Durangos was due to upper ball joints that allowed moisture to enter the joint, displace the grease, and eventually wear out the dry joint (somewhat quickly). The recall was issued around 2005 or 2006 for 2000 - 2003 models, but only 4wd. The 2wd models were only afforded a longer warranty (10yrs/100k miles, if I remember right) on the front ball joints. I think the rational here was that the 4wd models would get more severe front end travel and wear thus would be more of a risk. The rest of the front end parts you mentioned were usually casualties of the ball joint seperating. I'm not saying that this was what caused your accident, but would be a front runner for cause I think.
    Since you didn't own it whe the recall was issued I guess one could surmise that was the reason you weren't aware of it. I have a 2000 SLT 4wd 4.7 that I had the recall done on around 2007 or 2008, but the upper ball joints had been checked a couple of times and were OK prior to that. I don't put that many miles on the Dodge, it only has 103K on it now after 12 years or so. I'm not aware of so many "recalls", but there is a lot of service bulletins out there on this model, most of which I know about but won't go into now.
    I wish you good luck with your legal action though. I think that any gain you receive from it will more than be offset by your costs however.
    I enjoyed reading your post, that must have been a hair-raising day indeed!
  • audia88audia88 Posts: 2
    try the pcm .. i changed mine and it helped you can get them on line cheaper than what you would pay at auto parts store
  • agaddyagaddy Posts: 1
    I am at a loss. I have a 2002 dodge durango SLT + and have had it since 2005. I have had TONS of front end problems, stalling, windows falling down in the doors, brakes, ETC. We haven't received anything about recalls either. This hits too close to home for me. I am driving around with my 4 children on a daily basis and I just so happened to stumble onto this website looking for info about my radiator leaking. Something defiantly needs to be done about all the issues. Dodge should pay for the obvious problems that EVERYONE seems to be having. I would def be interested in seeing the photos if you wouldn't mind. Glad to hear that you weren't severely injured.
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