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Discussion Starter #1
So im about to buy a 2007 T/C with the 3.3l v6 engine! Not sure which trim, but it looks like it has plastic wheel covers, so i assume base? Im buying it for extremely cheap, it comes with the clean title in hand, it runs and drives, has tags, has keys, has a really clean body and interior. All for $400!! The (Soon to be) previous owner said he replaced the radiator and the water pump, neither fixed the issue. He also said it has a check engine light on for a cylinder 4 misfireMy guess is the thermostat, but any ideas? Anything I should look for when I go get it?
 

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Welcome, got any pictures? I love to see picture on here.

Sounds great. How many miles?

Look underneath for excessive rust, at least $400 dollars worth of rust...

The misfire can be anything from a spark plug, and injector, maybe an old set of spark plug (ignition) wires. #4 cylinder is the center spark plug in the front. As long as that cylinder is making compression you should be able to troubleshoot repair the misfire.

You could easily confirm the thermostat by removing it. Many times these days, you can simply reinstall the old gasket as they have a molded silicone seal on metal. But then again, thermostats are not super expensive and since you are already there it is not going to hurt anything to replace it anyway. And I'd use a new, quality gasket... I think a 12mm or 13mm socket with the 9 inch extension should get it.
Make sure the cooling fans are running, that can cause an overheat also. They don't necessarily run all the time, but should kick in as the engine gets hot.

How long until it overheats?

What part of the country are we talking about?

Open the sliders and look in the gap under the door sills for rust, muck accumulation.

Enjoy it, I love mine... as do a few folks around here.

Welcome to the MiniVan PitCrew!

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Its got 148K miles. No rust, always a Texas car (Im in the Dallas area). The previous owner said he swapped the plug and coil from another cylinder and it still misfired.Could very well be a fuel issue, ill test the spark plug wires, thermostat, and cooling fans tonight. (Im working online at home and went to buy it on my lunch break, and am going back to get it after im off) I love the look of these old Chrysler vans! My parents had a 2002 that they took my siblings home from the hospital in, so I've always loved them.
 

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Sounds great.

Yes, if he moved the spark plug and wire from say cylinder 4 to cylinder 6 and the fault did not move to the cylinder 6, it could be an injector or perhaps it could be a low compression issue.

We can talk you through doing the same thing with a fuel injector (moving it to a different cylinder for x-shoot purpose) and I can show you how to test/clean that injector while your holding it in your hand with a 9v battery.

Regardless, you probably are not going to get hurt on this deal. You could, worse case, ebay a few parts and get that $400 back fast.

Do you know how to Cha cha?
The key dance, you can read the check engine codes by turning the ignition key all the way on (but not crank) then off - on - off - on... then read the codes on the speedometer miles display, one at a time.
To reset the codes, you hold the two battery wires together for a few seconds, like a computer reboot.

Congratulations.
Now you are a soccer mom...
 

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Sounds great.

Yes, if he moved the spark plug and wire from say cylinder 4 to cylinder 6 and the fault did not move to the cylinder 6, it could be an injector or perhaps it could be a low compression issue.

We can talk you through doing the same thing with a fuel injector (moving it to a different cylinder for x-shoot purpose) and I can show you how to test/clean that injector while your holding it in your hand with a 9v battery.

Regardless, you probably are not going to get hurt on this deal. You could, worse case, ebay a few parts and get that $400 back fast.

Do you know how to Cha cha?
The key dance, you can read the check engine codes by turning the ignition key all the way on (but not crank) then off - on - off - on... then read the codes on the speedometer miles display, one at a time.
To reset the codes, you hold the two battery wires together for a few seconds, like a computer reboot.

Congratulations.
Now you are a soccer mom...
Sounds like a head gasket to me

Mike S Grand caravan 3.3
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sounds great.

Yes, if he moved the spark plug and wire from say cylinder 4 to cylinder 6 and the fault did not move to the cylinder 6, it could be an injector or perhaps it could be a low compression issue.

We can talk you through doing the same thing with a fuel injector (moving it to a different cylinder for x-shoot purpose) and I can show you how to test/clean that injector while your holding it in your hand with a 9v battery.

Regardless, you probably are not going to get hurt on this deal. You could, worse case, ebay a few parts and get that $400 back fast.

Do you know how to Cha cha?
The key dance, you can read the check engine codes by turning the ignition key all the way on (but not crank) then off - on - off - on... then read the codes on the speedometer miles display, one at a time.
To reset the codes, you hold the two battery wires together for a few seconds, like a computer reboot.

Congratulations.
Now you are a soccer mom...
Thank you! Here’s the van! She starts right up every time it’s insane. drives perfect other than the misfire, has brand new tires all around. The overheating was weird, it would fluctuate like crazy so i knew pretty well that it was a thermostat. I changed it out in literally 2 minutes. Now the temp stays below halfway.
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That is a great looking van. And for the price you paid, wow.
Enjoy!

Let us know if you have any questions...
 

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That is a great looking van. And for the price you paid, wow.
Enjoy!

Let us know if you have any questions...
I know you are trying to be nice, but with only that one picture, it is hard to see if it is in fact a great looking vehicle. Bet hood is peeling off.

But yes, price is good regardless.

Hope overheating problem was solved for good.

I also believe it is a good looking vehicle, but more pictures would help.

Congratulations and welcome to the forum.
 

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Gotta like the looks of the 4th Generation Chrysler vans.

Chrysler got it all wrong. The 5th Generation design should have followed the 2rd Generation. The 3rd then becomes the 4th and the 4th becomes the 5th. We could be driving around in some rust free, new vans looking like the 4th generation. Wouldn't that be nice. :cool:

One other thing. The front cladding should have been the upgraded touring design all the way.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I know you are trying to be nice, but with only that one picture, it is hard to see if it is in fact a great looking vehicle. Bet hood is peeling off.

But yes, price is good regardless.

Hope overheating problem was solved for good.

I also believe it is a good looking vehicle, but more pictures would help.

Congratulations and welcome to the forum.
You're correct about the hood peeling! It's also peeling on the roof a bit. The van was in some sort of extremely minor collision and all it did was bend the hood slightly. So the hood doesn't fit all the way on, but it still securely latches. Its higher on my list of things to fix, but want it mechanically sound first. We just replaced all of the spark plugs today, its pretty clear that cylinder 4 is running lean. Gonna look at injectors tomorrow. I went to a pick n pull today and grabbed a 3 seater middle row bench seat out of a 2007 Grand Caravan to replace the 2 seat bench my van had. Also grabbed all of the rear lights (Left taillight was splitting apart, right taillight was cracked and had a small hole, and upper brake light was cracked where the screws hold it in, so when I replaced the bad brake light it wouldnt go back on. Also got a small missing trim piece for the tailgate. Also washed the outside, and did a ton of work on the interior. Used a Dyson carpet cleaner on the entire carpet and all of the seats, carpet changed colors, and I got most of the stains out! Did a lot of vacuuming and just general disinfecting, but the interior is in great shape cosmetically, except for the headliner.... I also restored the headlights and hit 149K miles!! Im attaching pics. I will be sure to get some pics of other angles and interior tomorrow.
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Discussion Starter #11
Gotta like the looks of the 4th Generation Chrysler vans.

Chrysler got it all wrong. The 5th Generation design should have followed the 2rd Generation. The 3rd then becomes the 4th and the 4th becomes the 5th. We could be driving around in some rust free, new vans looking like the 4th generation. Wouldn't that be nice. :cool:

One other thing. The front cladding should have been the upgraded touring design all the way.
I didn't know there was a difference until I just looked it up, wow that definitely does look better. Bumper may get replaced, so if i can find one cheap at a junkyard, along with headlights and stuff, id probably swap to that. I also REALLY want to add roof rails as mine is not equipped for them. Is there any way to install them?
 

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Have you checked for error codes on the OBD2 port? All the symptoms look very much like a EGR Valve failure. I recommend getting an OBD2 port monitor, I got a low end one on Amazon for 15.00 that is bluetooth and has phone apps. Anyhow, I would bet on a P0404 error code in the system memory. This is exactly where I am right now with my 2006 T&C 3.8l. It had been heating up to fast in my opinion, and was having overflow from the radiator with no apparent cause, Engine light finally came on and Error code popped for EGR. I had been noticing for about 2 months that VanPrime was sounding a little congested. Sure enough that turned into what I thought were misfires , stuttering, chugging, lurching. The EGR is not a hard fix, a decent replacement part will cost 75.00<+ . You can find many relevant videos on EGR replacement for your T&C. I could have purchased a cheaper After market replacement part but noticed in two of the 6 videos I watched on EGR issues, that the mechanics using what are clearly low end mass produced after market crap, (The housings on the parts looked like Heavy duty tinfoil) the vehicles had immediate issues with those parts.)
 

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Have you checked for error codes on the OBD2 port? All the symptoms look very much like a EGR Valve failure. I recommend getting an OBD2 port monitor, I got a low end one on Amazon for 15.00 that is bluetooth and has phone apps. Anyhow, I would bet on a P0404 error code in the system memory. This is exactly where I am right now with my 2006 T&C 3.8l. It had been heating up to fast in my opinion, and was having overflow from the radiator with no apparent cause, Engine light finally came on and Error code popped for EGR. I had been noticing for about 2 months that VanPrime was sounding a little congested. Sure enough that turned into what I thought were misfires , stuttering, chugging, lurching. The EGR is not a hard fix, a decent replacement part will cost 75.00<+ . You can find many relevant videos on EGR replacement for your T&C. I could have purchased a cheaper After market replacement part but noticed in two of the 6 videos I watched on EGR issues, that the mechanics using what are clearly low end mass produced after market crap, (The housings on the parts looked like Heavy duty tinfoil) the vehicles had immediate issues with those parts.)
Well the overheating issue was actually caused by a faulty thermostat! So now the only big issue so far is that misfire! The spark plug in cylinder 4 looked lean which makes me think it’s the injector, which i’m testing today.
 

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Well the overheating issue was actually caused by a faulty thermostat! So now the only big issue so far is that misfire! The spark plug in cylinder 4 looked lean which makes me think it’s the injector, which i’m testing today.
While it is running, take a long screw driver and touch that injector (middle front), carefully hold the handle near your ear and listen if you can hear ticking? If so, then the injector is trying to squirt.

You can get at the injectors by removing the ten (10mm socket) bolts and taking the top of the plenum off. Them 10 bolts and some other stuff like the intake hose, a few electrical plugs, and the throttle body... And then the fuel rail.


Then if you get some Techron, or some other flavor injector cleaner, you be able to put a few drops into the top of the injector and momentarily actuate it (tap tap tap) with a 9v battery.... [don't hold constant voltage on the injector] you'll be able to see the cleaner level drop each time. Let it sit in there and soak / dissolve. If you have shop air, you can blow through too, same way. There are a few youTube videos i'm sure. * I forgot, there is a basket screen filter in the top of each injector. You can remove them by carefully ever so slightly turning a wood screw into them (not a long pointy drywall type screw, more of a #8 pan head wood screw) and pulling it out (press fit)

Or you can send them out to an injector cleaning and flow testing shop. **Stay away from the Advanced/AutoZona cheap injectors. They'll work great for a little while and then they literally have been know to fall apart. brittle plastic failure.

Now when you put it back together for testing, I'd move that suspect injector to another cylinder up front and put a known good working injector in that spot.

Assembly, you should be able to re-use the same silicone gaskets if nothing damaged/cut.
 

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Remember, you can read the diagnostic codes with the ignition key. Reset with the battery wires.

You can get new, aftermarket headlight on Amazon for under $70 / pair. tail lights too. Not worth all the labor to polish old, imao.

Keep looking at You Pull, you'll find a black hood. Or any hood and drop it off at local auto body shop for paint before you install.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
While it is running, take a long screw driver and touch that injector (middle front), carefully hold the handle near your ear and listen if you can hear ticking? If so, then the injector is trying to squirt.

You can get at the injectors by removing the ten (10mm socket) bolts and taking the top of the plenum off. Them 10 bolts and some other stuff like the intake hose, a few electrical plugs, and the throttle body... And then the fuel rail.


Then if you get some Techron, or some other flavor injector cleaner, you be able to put a few drops into the top of the injector and momentarily actuate it (tap tap tap) with a 9v battery.... [don't hold constant voltage on the injector] you'll be able to see the cleaner level drop each time. Let it sit in there and soak / dissolve. If you have shop air, you can blow through too, same way. There are a few youTube videos i'm sure. * I forgot, there is a basket screen filter in the top of each injector. You can remove them by carefully ever so slightly turning a wood screw into them (not a long pointy drywall type screw, more of a #8 pan head wood screw) and pulling it out (press fit)

Or you can send them out to an injector cleaning and flow testing shop. **Stay away from the Advanced/AutoZona cheap injectors. They'll work great for a little while and then they literally have been know to fall apart. brittle plastic failure.

Now when you put it back together for testing, I'd move that suspect injector to another cylinder up front and put a known good working injector in that spot.

Assembly, you should be able to re-use the same silicone gaskets if nothing damaged/cut.
So i just completely replaced the cylinder 4 injector with a brand new one, still misfiring.
 

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Yeah, that happens.
We call that "Firing the Parts Canon" and can be hit or miss.

I try to encourage troubleshooting before parts changing, there is a systematic methodology.

I suppose the next step is to use a noid light to verify that the signal wire is 'firing' the injector.
 

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OP, not to rain on your parade, but don't spend any money on 'fluff' for the van until you get a feeling for the health of the engine. Maybe overheated too many times? Also, the thermostat looked like there was oil in the coolant.

For now, you can clean up the headlights with any type of car polish and a little elbow grease. Remember, they don't need to be perfect, and anything would be better than what they are now.
 

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I'm new to this forum. First post/reply here. Replacing the radiator is almost always going to help with overheating problems and thermostat replacement is always a good idea.
I have a 2004 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT 3.8L. I had no idea what a collapsed coolant hose meant until I looked under the radiator cap and found bits of rust just sitting there loosely. Didn't know what to think. Just cleaned off for the meantime and later replaced with an OEM cap. Radiator coolant level was low. Thought it shouldn't because the coolant reservoir was full to max mark. Over a few days I monitored the level in the reservoir. I know for a fact that it should move up and down each time engine is cool and when hot. I noticed some dark brown spots showing through in the reservoir and thought it might be the same rust I found under the radiator cap. Went to remove the hose that connects at the radiator cap and goes to the reservoir. Sure enough it was deeply clogged with rust. Used a wire clothes hanger to punch through carefully and ran pressurized water through the hose. Also took the reservoir off and I found some rust residue settled at the bottom. Rinsed out vigorously and reinstalled hose and reservoir. The reservoir is held on by 3 hex head screws. The bottom screw is best loosened from below the van. I left it off so I can remove the reservoir once again to check for more settled rust in a week or 2. I can see how so many Crysler and Dodge vans overheat so easily now. The inlet inside diameter where the hose connects to the reservoir is so tiny it can easily get clogged up again so I'll be checking for more rust and clogging again soon. I've read up on these forums that people replace the radiator and makes me wonder did they ever check that hose from radiator to reservoir. The color of the old thermostat you show in the pictur indicates some rust buildup.
I will be draining the radiator next, my van still runs really hot after radiator cap and thermostat change. Is the hood prop being extremely hot to the touch a surefire way to tell if van is still running too hot? or is this normal? Also, two of my relays in the fusebox are extremely hotter to the touch than the rest, namely Fuel pump relay and EATX transmission safety relay. In regards to your missfiring issue, could it be due to back pressure sneaking into that cylinder because the one or both exhaust valves are not seating solidly and the catalytic converter is beginning to be clogged? I'm currently looking at this issue because my mechanic told me my catalytic converter should be clogged since I have a loss of power and the van won't accelerate quickly or pick up speed quickly, only very slowly I can reach 30 mph while keeping rpms under 2,500. I'm going to need some help with this since Chrysler vans and Dodge vans are almost identical.
 

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On your coil pack, switch 4 &
Replacing the radiator is almost always going to help with overheating problems and thermostat replacement is always a good idea.
Went to remove the hose that connects at the radiator cap and goes to the reservoir. Sure enough it was deeply clogged with rust. Used a wire clothes hanger to punch through carefully and ran pressurized water through the hose. Also took the reservoir off and I found some rust residue settled at the bottom. Rinsed out vigorously and reinstalled hose and reservoir. The reservoir is held on by 3 hex head screws. The bottom screw is best loosened from below the van. I left it off so I can remove the reservoir once again to check for more settled rust in a week or 2. I can see how so many Crysler and Dodge vans overheat so easily now. The inlet inside diameter where the hose connects to the reservoir is so tiny it can easily get clogged up again so I'll be checking for more rust and clogging again soon. I've read up on these forums that people replace the radiator and makes me wonder did they ever check that hose from radiator to reservoir. The color of the old thermostat you show in the pictur indicates some rust buildup.
I will be draining the radiator next, my van still runs really hot after radiator cap and thermostat change. Is the hood prop being extremely hot to the touch a surefire way to tell if van is still running too hot? or is this normal? Also, two of my relays in the fusebox are extremely hotter to the touch than the rest, namely Fuel pump relay and EATX transmission safety relay. In regards to your missfiring issue, could it be due to back pressure sneaking into that cylinder because the one or both exhaust valves are not seating solidly and the catalytic converter is beginning to be clogged? I'm currently looking at this issue because my mechanic told me my catalytic converter should be clogged since I have a loss of power and the van won't accelerate quickly or pick up speed quickly, only very slowly I can reach 30 mph while keeping rpms under 2,500. I'm going to need some help with this since Chrysler vans and Dodge vans are almost identical.
Welcome to the forum.

No, replacing radiator will not help if the problem is the thermostat. First culprit will always be the thermostat, then radiator fans and lastly the radiator.

That little hose between radiator and overflow bottle is the correct size for the application, any larger and it might not work.

It will never clog in a well maintained engine, shouldn't be any rust ay all.

Seems like your cooling system was badly neglected.
 
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