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Dodge Grand Caravan Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Dodge Grand Caravan based on complaints from actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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Known Problems

A defective vehicle speed sensor can cause problems with the cruise control and speedometer operation, as well as erratic shifting. The connectors on the sensors are also susceptible to corrosion, which will create similar symptoms. Any of these problems can cause Check Engine Light illumination.

A loose timing chain on early models will produce a rattle (in the front of the engine) because the chain hits the guide. The timing chain should be replaced (the cam sprocket should always be replaced at the same time). Remove and discard the timing chain guide; on later V6 models, the guide has been eliminated.

A dirty throttle body may cause low engine idle speed or frequent stalling, as oily residue blocks air flow in the throttle when the throttle is closed. Throttle body cleaning may be necessary to correct this condition. Our technicians caution against spraying cleaner directly onto the throttle body as this may damage the throttle position sensor (TPS).

On higher-mileage vehicles, engine oil leaks from the valve covers and front crankshaft seal are common.

A loosening (or loss) of the nut retaining the engine cooling module fan can cause a vibration. If not addressed promptly, the fan blade may not turn, causing the engine to overheat. A revised engine cooling module fan retaining nut kit has been released.

Timing cover oil and coolant leaks and front crankshaft oil seal leaks are common on high-mileage vehicles. Always replace the timing chain and cam sprocket at the same time.

Noise coming from the front suspension can be caused by the front sway bar; the sway bar bushings should be replaced.

A "tapping plate cage" on the driver side frame rail may cause a squeak or tick noise while driving, this is often misdiagnosed as a suspension problem. The tapping plate is a threaded plate which accepts one of the front sub-frame mounting bolts. The "cage" of the threaded plate may be touching the frame rail causing noise as the vehicle is driven. "Adjusting" the rear tab on the tapping plate cage so it no longer is touching the frame should eliminate this noise.

An engine Oil leak may develop at the cam sensor o-ring seal. Our technicians tell us this is often misdiagnosed as an external head gasket leak.

A malfunctioning switch in the steering column can cause the front windshield wipers to self-activate or not turn off. A failed windshield switch will require replacement.

Often when replacing the front left wheel speed sensor, the wrong part is used (it's from a later model year). If the wrong sensor is used, it can damage the wheel speed sensor wiring.

An intermittent loss of speed control can happen soon after the transaxle input or output speed sensor has been replaced. The problem is most likely caused by bad connectors.

The speedometer may become inoperative due to a failed vehicle speed sensor (VSS), . A failed sensor will require replacement.

A delay in the transaxle engagement (greater than three seconds) may have multiple causes, including a defective pump, defective internal lip seals, valve body components, park-reverse-neutral-drive lever switch, and the output speed sensor. Proper diagnoses will be necessary to determine the exact cause.

Under heavy acceleration in temperatures above 80° F, an engine spark knock can be heard. The powertrain control module may require replacement.