Last post on Oct 23, 2006 at 1:11 AM
You are in the Chrysler/Plymouth Voyager, Dodge Caravan
What is this discussion about?
Dodge Caravan, Dodge Grand Caravan, Chrysler Voyager, Plymouth Voyager, Chrysler Town and Country, Van
#3289 of 4276 Re: Failure of rear brake lines '96 T&C [ch42howard]
Sep 26, 2005 (5:59 pm)
Chrysler Corporation and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) is well aware of the rusted brake line problem on the Chrysler Minivans. NHTSA is investigating the problem because of the many complaints that they have received.
There is a Recall on the Chrysler Minivans in Canada for rusted brake lines which should start in September.
You should also check your brake lines all the way back to the rear wheels. The design of the holding clamps allow the brake lines to rub together and the protective zinc coating will be removed. When the coating is removed corrosion will occur very quickly.
The only way that you can get their attention is to notify Chrysler and NHTSA about your problem.
We had a brake line burst on our 1999 Dodge Caravan. The brake lines were original equipment on the vehicle. We had a brake job done with 31K miles and we now have 47K miles on the car.
If you check your brake lines you will see that the solid line is made of steel and it is welded to a stainless steel flex segment. The welding of dissimilar metals can cause crevice corrosion which can cause a brake line burst without warning.
I just sent the following letter to NHTSA in August.
Dr. Jeffrey W. Runge
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Administrator
400 7th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20590
August 22, 2005
A review of the NHTSA complaint site indicates that Daimler Chrysler Corporation has a very serious safety defect or nonconformance that could result in a serious injury and or death. Daimler Chrysler has been notified of this defect/nonconformance on several occasions and continues to deny the problem.
The metal brake lines on the 1999 Dodge Caravan, Plymouth Voyager, and Chrysler Mini-Vans are welded with dissimilar metals. They have braided stainless steel flex segments that are welded to steel brake lines. This welding of dissimilar metals could cause corrosion of the steel brake lines and results in a brake line burst which occurs without any warnings.
We found five (5) complaints to NHTSA, on the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) Complaint Site pertaining to the corrosion of Chrysler supplied brake lines which resulted in brake line bursts. There may be more that we didn't locate.
Ref: ODI Complaint Numbers - 10112174, 10121461, 10023409, 10087291, and 10125674.
Complaint Numbers 10103217, 10044433, and 10017536 may also be related to this same problem.
This complaint is very personal to us because my wife experienced a brake line burst in our 1999 Dodge Caravan. If the brake line burst occurred in heavy traffic and/or at highway speed, it could have resulted in her death or serious injury. Ref: ODI Complaint # 10121461.
We notified Daimler Chrysler Corporation on several occasions by telephone and emails concerning this serious safety defect/nonconformance. They were apologetic about the mishap, however, they stated (1) that they had never had a complaint concerning brake line burst on any of their vehicles, (2) they had never issued a Service Bulletin or Recall, and (3) they could do nothing for me because the vehicle was out of warranty.
We are appalled by Daimler Chrysler's lack of concern on this serious safety issue and we believe that their lack of corrective action is criminal.
We are also upset because NHTSA, has had several complaints on this safety related defect/nonconformance and no action has been taken.
Do we have to have a DEATH before Daimler Chrysler Corporation or NHTSA investigates this serious safety defect or nonconformance?
What is the LIFE EXPECTANCY of these brake lines?
How do you stop a vehicle in heavy traffic or at highway speeds?
Is the consumer or manufacturer, responsible to prove that these brake lines are defective or nonconforming?
The Safety Recall Compendium issued by NHTSA (3rd Release, June 2001) clearly requires that,
When to Report (49 U.S.C. & 30118 and 49 CFR Part 573.5 b)
A manufacturer who has determined that a safety defect or noncompliance exists, must report such a determination to NHTSA within 5 working days. A manufacturer need not have identified the cause, scope, or remedy in order to make a determination that a safety defect or noncompliance exists, at least in some vehicles or items of motor vehicle equipment. If part of the information which is required to fully describe the recall is unknown, notification to the agency must still be made with the existing information within 5 working days. The remaining information is to be provided as it becomes available.
Who Should Report (49 U.S.C. & 30102 AND 30118: 49 CFR Parts 573.3 and 579)
Each manufacturer of a motor vehicle has recall responsibility for any safety-related defect or any noncompliance determined to exist in a vehicle or in any item of original equipment. The manufacturer of an item of motor vehicle equipment in which a safety defect or noncompliance is determined to exist (1) is responsible for notifying the vehicle manufacturer and (2) with respect to an item of replacement equipment (including tires), has recall responsibility for the equipment containing the safety defect or noncompliance. (49 CFR Part 579 "Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility".)
We understand that Daimler Chrysler Corporation has the same type brake line configuration in the 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2000 models of their Dodge Caravan, Plymouth Voyager, and Chrysler Town & Country, Mini-Vans.
We also understand that a change was made on the 2001 models that removed the welded Stainless Steel Flex segment from the brake lines.
We have copies of emails sent to Daimler Chrysler Corporation concerning this complaint and also emails with their replies to us.
We also have a section of the original brake line that was removed from my 1999 Dodge Caravan. It can be made available to your testing facilities to analyze the cause of the defect/nonconformance. Ref: attached picture.
Please keep us informed as to your progress on this serious safety defect/nonconformance.
#3290 of 4276 Re: Noisy Stow and Go minivans Part 2 [user777]
Sep 27, 2005 (1:33 pm)
The noises that bother me are coming from the engine bay and front wheel wells into the driver/front passenger area and are independent of the load. Passengers riding in the back don't seem to hear any odd noises. I hear the tire noises from driving over even very small cracks in pavement at slow speeds (15-25 mph) the instant the front wheels cross an imperfection, so know that the sound isn't coming from the rear.
This is my third DC minivan ('92 owned for 9 years and '99 owned for 3 years), so I have some realistic expectations as to what a DC minivan sounds like.
My Bridgestone Turanza tires have been standard equipment on DC minivans for some time now and the Tire Rack site shows that DC Minivans owners mostly say they are OK, unlike owners of Toyota Sienas and other Japanese cars that use this tire as OE. I can separate out the noise component created by them by noting the changes in sound when I go from new coarse asphalt to new smooth asphalt to old coarse and smooth asphalt to concrete, both smooth (relatively) and grooved. I find their noise to be as good as any others I had on previous cars (Goodyear and Michelin). My '92 van got almost as noisy as my new one when the OE tires wore out at close to 50K miles.
I have test driven three other new T&C minivans and found two neighbors who own stow and go versions of DC products. None of the others exhibit the levels of noise that mine does - I can hear a faint a/c compressor whine, but it is very low level and quickly subsumed in other noises. My noise is very loud at slow speeds (quite a bit of my local driving is at 30 mph or less - 15 in the manufactured home community in which I live) before the exhaust noise builds at around 1300-1400 rpm, then adds to the growling roar at speeds of 40-45 and above.
Two different dealers have looked it over and say they can't find anything.
One other thing I notice, this car, like the other two DC minivans I owned, exhibits a bit of vague steering and wandering over road dips when the tires are inflated to normal pressures. On the other two, I merely bumped up the tire pressure about 4 lbs over standard and that sharpened up the steering considerably with only a minor increase in ride harshness. This car is so harsh at normal pressures that I haven't tried upping the tire pressure yet.
This is the most unsatisfactory new car I have bought since the 1977 Dodge Aspen sedan that put me off Chrysler products for 15 years. I don't count the 1988 Dodge Colt Vista wagon because that was made by Mitsubishi and was a good car indeed - it might even still be soldiering on as a taxi in Morocco to this day.
#3291 of 4276 Re: Noisy Stow and Go minivans Part 2 [veritasusa]
Sep 27, 2005 (2:57 pm)
This is really weird problem you have. Maybe it's something simple like DCX didn't use sound insulation in your firewall? Maybe it's something so obvious that everyone is overlooking? Keep us updated on this one!!
#3292 of 4276 Re: Noisy Stow and Go minivans Part 2 [veritasusa]
Sep 27, 2005 (7:28 pm)
that's a rather lengthy response, but forgive me please, you only addressed the question i posed to you related to tire inflation.
FWIW, my van's original OE tires were Bridgestone Potenzas (ODY LX) and they were noisy at recommended pressure and moreso with more pressure. They showed a great deal of sensitivity to surface, being louder on concrete and cut surfaces used to channel water. They wore out at about 25K. I replaced them with the ODY EX OE tire Michelin Symmetry, and I'm quite certain, on my van, they are much quieter w.r.t. noise levels...
I understand your frustration, and the fact that a few dealerships supposidly looked at the vehicle. Unfortunately, it looks like you need to do more sleuthing on your own.
I was supplying a number of questions to help you think outside the box about potential root causes. I like the suggestion that perhaps they didn't install firewall insulation...Did you check that? I think that more unlikely than other possibilities, but I think you need to start by casting a wide net, and starting as if noone has looked at your car.
Have you had someone else drive while you ride in the passenger seat? It may help with sound localization.
Do you have OE or Aftermarket Floor Mats? This is an example of something which might seem like a dumb question, but shouldn't be ruled out.
#3293 of 4276 Re: Noisy Stow and Go minivans Part 2 [user777]
Sep 28, 2005 (5:23 am)
Do you have OE or Aftermarket Floor Mats? This is an example of something which might seem like a dumb question, but shouldn't be ruled out.
Maybe someone in the plant installed the carpeting without insulation also???
#3294 of 4276 2005 T&C Touring
Sep 28, 2005 (6:19 am)
Well, I hope this is not a sign of things to come. Over the past 2000 miles I have noticed the Power Steering fluid slowing going down. It had been refilled every 1000 miles or so from the "add" slash to the "full" line. I brought it to my Chrysler dealer and they said the steering rack was leaking, so they replaced the rack. With only 5500 miles on the odometer, this doesn't make me happy. Glad I bought the extended warranty.
#3295 of 4276 Re: 2005 T&C Touring [fish8]
Sep 28, 2005 (7:04 am)
Well, I wouldn't worry about it too much. Just be glad it was found and fixed under warranty instead of just after it expired.
It is exceedingly difficult to get down to zero defects on every vehicle made no matter what the brand.
#3296 of 4276 Re: Noisy Stow and Go minivans Part 2 [dennisctc]
Sep 28, 2005 (8:14 am)
hmmm never thought of that one. do they put insulation under the carpeting? I've never pulled interiors so i don't know. maybe a shop dealing with custom interiors may be of help there...
ok, while we are opening up the "problem space", maybe your van has a different manufacturer strut / springs than the typical van?
i guess you could go crazy considering all the possibilities, but if you can start by doing a side-by-side drive with a neighbor, co-worker, friend, or sympathetic dealer and loaner / demo (the same model and same tire), you might be able to better compare.
i still think it's a good idea to ride as a passenger, as your ability to localize sound will change from driver to front passenger, to mid- or rear-passenger seating positions. this can work in your favor if you think the source of sound is comming from one spot rather than from a general area.
#3297 of 4276 Service Engine Soon '97 Plymouth G.Voyager
Sep 29, 2005 (12:09 pm)
This vehicle has 134,000 km and has been serviced according to the manufacturer specs, and maintained in good repair since it was purchased.
In June, the “Service Engine Soon” light appeared, and I brought the vehicle into the dealer for a tune-up, which was recommended to fix the problem. It did not, and during several repeat visits to the Service Department I was sold a variety of parts which did not affect the “Service Engine Soon” light. All told I spent over $2000. At that point, the Service Department assumed responsibility to get the engine running properly, and I returned the vehicle an additional 8-or-so times during the ensuing 3 mos. Each time I drove off the lot the light would re-appear usually within 2-24h. I have had the van in the shop around 12 times since June.
Last week the Service Department had the vehicle for 6 days, and I was told that 6 new injectors were required. These were installed by the dealer (at no cost to myself) and I thought the problem was solved.
Wrong. The light is back on.
Any ideas on what is going on?
#3298 of 4276 Re: Service Engine Soon '97 Plymouth G.Voyager [mrsalmon]
Sep 30, 2005 (9:08 am)
What's going on is you have an incompetent dealer service department. Either that our they know what is wrong and have been milking you for every dime you will give up to get this vehicle working and finally got embarrased that they still haven't fixed the root cause.
Go to a different dealership, or an independent garage. It looks to me they have been ripping you off, or at best they do not know what they are doing.