Last post on Oct 23, 2006 at 1:11 AM
You are in the Chrysler/Plymouth Voyager, Dodge Caravan
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Dodge Caravan, Dodge Grand Caravan, Chrysler Voyager, Plymouth Voyager, Chrysler Town and Country, Van
Apr 24, 2003 (1:40 pm)
This copy of a letter is self-explanatory. Anyone else come across this problem? Any suggestions?
"DODGE MINIVAN BRAKE DESIGN PROBLEM
Despite my wife’s mild and careful driving style, our 2001 Dodge Grand Caravan has for the second time in 24,000 miles of lightly laden suburban use (not in mountains) gradually developed uneven braking said to be because of warped rotors (all round on this model). Machining the rotors under warranty solved the problem for only a few thousand miles before it started again, gradually worsening as before. Both the dealer service manager and our local garage service manager say that this is a common problem on this model because the rotors are too thin. Chrysler HQ (“Contact us”) does not contest the diagnosis but says it’s out of warranty. Questions: are you aware of this model's problem, and is it possible to fit heavier duty rotors (although the dealer has none) rather than endure the same problem again with the new ones (current ones are too thin to machine again and that would in any case just hasten the return of the problem)? Also should Chrysler own up on this one, any safety concerns?"
#1762 of 4276 Just get a good set of aftermarket rotors.
Apr 24, 2003 (3:40 pm)
Apr 24, 2003 (10:10 pm)
I had a 96 Grand Voyager, rotors rotted out in the first 18 months of ownership...bought replacement (aftermarket) Raybestos rotors, they lasted 5 yrs + (were still in good shape when I traded in my lemon last month).
The muffler place that installed the new rotors told me that Chyrsler OEM rotors are made in China & are composite steel, ie made of multiple thin layers of steel compressed, sort of like a flaky pastry...or as the muffler guy phrased it, "made of compressed Chinese Coke cans".
#1764 of 4276 warped brake rotors
Apr 25, 2003 (7:23 am)
I'm just curious - do all you people with warped brake rotors torque your lug nuts to manufacturer's specs (I think currently 95 ft-lb) when you put your wheels on? Or are you letting some guy at the shop use an air gun? Last time I had my T&C inspected, several thousand miles later I tried to rotate the tires by myself and realized that the lug nuts were on so tight that if I had a flat on the side of the road there was no way I was ever going to get that tire off (which would be very BAD) - because when they removed the tires at inspection, they used an air wrench without a torque limiter to put them on. Of course I immediately drove it right back there and had them remove the lug nuts and put them on with a torque limiter so they were closer to specification. My suggestion to all you people with warped brake rotors is to either invest in a torque wrench, make sure whomever is putting your wheels on uses one (or a torque limiter on the air wrench, which isn't great, but helps), or just to take lugs nuts on and put them on yourself using a tire iron. With the tire iron at least you'll get a feel and should put fairly similar amounts of torque on all the lugs. Reason for this is, if you're overtorquing the lugs, you'll be compressing the wheel to the rotor with too much pressure and will, of course, warp the rotor, even under light/normal driving conditions. That's not to say that the stock Chrysler rotors may not be just a little weak for the task. Just my two cents. Hope this helps someone out there.
#1765 of 4276 Good idea...
Apr 25, 2003 (7:27 am)
..which is what I follow (I have my own torque wrench). The original rotors still warped at around 20k miles. Now at nearly 50k with no problems on the aftermarket ones.
Apr 25, 2003 (4:04 pm)
What brand did you buy?
Apr 25, 2003 (4:08 pm)
I found a Big O Tire franchise owned by a local family and every wheel they touch is hand torqued back on. They do all my brake work and tire balance and rotation every 6,000 miles. I finally had the rotors on my 300M turned at 90,000 miles.
#1768 of 4276 I have a simple...
Apr 25, 2003 (6:18 pm)
needle deflection type Craftsman 1/2 inch drive torque wrench from Sears, about $20. Works just fine for torquing lug nuts.
#1769 of 4276 Re rotors
Apr 25, 2003 (7:12 pm)
I have a '99 GCS with 42k, still has the original rotors, have not been turned or anything. All service has been done by one Dodge dealer (same one I've been going to for 12 years). Maybe the Coke cans in '99 used better steel.
Apr 26, 2003 (5:26 am)
Sorry, I meant the aftermarket rotors.