Last post on Jan 13, 2003 at 3:27 PM
You are in the Pickups - Archived Discussions
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Dodge Dakota, Brakes, Engine, Transmission, Truck
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#398 of 738 For What It's Worth
Feb 17, 2002 (12:14 pm)
Lot's of griping here, but for what it's worth, I'm on my second Dakota (first one had a 318, second one has the 4.7L). Here's what I can tell you about each:
Dakota #1 was a 1995 and I put 136k miles on it before sellign it. The ONLY thing I had to do outside or nomal maintenance (oil changes, tires, etc) was a radiator at 130k miles. Salt got to it. I replaced the pads and shoes once and it still had the original drums and rotors. It was an outstanding truck. The only gripe I had was that it still had the 1980s vintage type interior so it didn't look or feel very high quality.
Dakota #2 is 2000 (currently has 9k miles). I had one problem with it. The left front shock came loose and the dealer fixed it on the spot when I rolled in. As far as the brakes go, so far so good and they stop better than most sedans I've been in save the BMW 325i I just test drove (still drooling over that one, but it's not a truck ).
Anyway, if brakes are the only issue, I agree with whoever said to suck it up and just fix 'em. If that's the only problem you ever have be thankful becasue all of them have their good points and bad.
As for Honda, I have a 92 Accord in the driveway as well with 138k miles. Great car. Had to replace the timing belt (normal), CV boots (sometimes normal), and a wheel bearing (not normal). That's it to date, but my first Dakota actually had fewer woes. Also, for those of you who may remember, Hondas had notorious issues with eating rortors from about 1991 until 1996.
Here's the key, this really isn't a major problem. Yes, we pay good money for vehicles and they should be right the first time, but sometimes they're not and as long as it's not serious stuff I can live with it. I don't like squeeks and rattles either so thanfully the 2000 Dakota doesn't have that.
I have no idea where these prices for brake jobs are coming from. If that's what people want to charge then pull out the wrenches youself. My God don't be such wimps! Excellent quality rotors can be had for $35 - $50 ea and a high quality pad set can be had for about $30. This and an hour of your time and the problem is gone. The gripers have probably spent more time than that hollerin' about it in this forum!
Lastly, on the good side of the ledger, I've been greatly surprised at how well my 2000 Dakota Sport handles. For a truck it is absolutely outstanding and when compared to most cars, it's at least "good" if not "pretty good". It goes around corners better than my Accord and better than most anything else I've looked at in the car lines except a 'Stang and of course the high end sports sedans. In fact, the steering is weighted a lot like a sports sedan and I love it! Yeah, I plan to keep my truck, but I'm also looking for a nice sedan to go with it. I'm a MOPAR guy and have been one for a long time (even back when they were horrible cars in the late 70s and 80s!). Only problem is they don't have anything that turns my crank right now. I'm looking for horsepower, rear wheel drive, and a 5 spd manual. Chrysler/Dodge only has one of the three. I'd take 2 of three if they had it. So, I've been off in BMW land. I'm hoping to see a Hemi powered 300 with a manual trans in the next several years. If they make it I'll be in line to get one. Until then, I plan to enjoy my Dakota.
#399 of 738 Ford F-150 sales
Feb 17, 2002 (7:23 pm)
bpeebles - Why is it that you do not consider fleet sales to be sales? Or rental sales? As far as I'm concerned, if you sell the vehicle, it's a sale, and should be counted as such. Who cares if the guy who is driving it paid for it himself or if it is a work supplied vehicle? It's still out there, paid for and in use. ??
These types of things, along with the 'xxx of the year' awards from every magazine out there, should be taken with a grain of salt anyway.
Not very good reasons to NEVER buy a vehicle from them, in my opinion...
Feb 18, 2002 (5:27 pm)
You may be correct... my reasons for not ever owning a FRD may be pretty lame.
As for counting fleet and rental "sales" to claim the "best selling truck in the world". My point is that they are comparing apples to oranges to make that claim. I realize that the idea is to "pull in" other folks that like to follow the crowd. I guess that is the VERY reason I am running the other way. (I do not like crowds)
I know several farmers that have tried Frds over the years... they guzzled gas and wore out quickly. These farmers ALL ended up in the DODGE camp after trying all the other trucks out there.
Feb 19, 2002 (6:20 am)
I'd have to second what Bpeebles said about brand loyalty (and not having any). Personally, I could care less who makes what, or even the political agenda of the companies (although I can't say that I agree with Toyota and Ford marketing tactics). This is, however, mainly because I hate politics. For me it is the overall package that is important; reliability, options, performance, dealer reliability/performance are all a part of that. I have owned 5 cars/trucks thus far, and all of them have their upsides and downsides. I owned a Saturn SL2 for 170K miles and replaced NOTHING except for brake pads and one alternator, and even THAT was due to my adding a subwoofer to the car. It sure didn't beat many people in races, but I loved that car because it was fast enough for what I needed, and it cost next to nothing to maintain. I then bought an S-10 because gas mileage was good and it hauled stuff around well enough for what I needed, and although I didn't have to have anything repaired, I only owned it for 45K miles, and by the time I traded it in on my Dakota, the clutch was about to go, the rotors HAD gone, the dash was rattling like crazy (and had been since 10K miles) and on top of that, the dealer took advantage of me so that I almost had to pay for a new clutch.
I've owned my Dak for almost 8K miles so far in 2 months and while that's not a lot of time, so far I am extremely pleased with it. It has exhibited none of the problems that I have heard of yet, is quiet as a mouse as far as rattles/squeaks go, has more than enough power for a V6 for what I need, looks great, and on top of that, I got it for $500 under invoice at 0.0% financing with a 7 yr/100K warranty. To top it off, I've had it in the shop 3 or 4 times for routine maintenance and a little 'buzz' that came from the engine (turns out the oil dipstick was beating on the underside of the hood), and I have always gotten awesome service. I can't say that the truck will NEVER have problems, but my S10 had problems with the clutch and squeaks before 6K miles were out, and I've used my Dakota harder than I ever used any vehicle. I can't say I'm a Dodge loyalist, but I can say that I'll never refuse to purchase a vehicle from certain companies. After all, 10 years ago, if someone had said "Hey, in 10 years, Toyota will come out with an extremely popular full-size truck, and Hyundai cars will be selling like hotcakes because they are extremely reliable" I would have dropped dead with laughter.
#402 of 738 Front End Noise
Feb 21, 2002 (7:20 pm)
I've got a 2001 QuadCab 4WD with 11,500 miles. My only complaint is a clunking noise coming from the front end when I make left turns or hit bumps. Dealer told me they "think" it's due to the torsion bar not "floating" like it is supposed to. Their solution is to remove the torsion bars, apply anti-seizing lubricant and reinstall them. I was told this should "minimize" the problem. Anyone have similar problems? Otherwise very satisfied with the truck.
Feb 22, 2002 (9:51 am)
I had a clunking noise when I backed down my driveway and turned the wheel. It turned out that when I had the vehicle aligned, the shop forgot to tighten some setting. Sorry I can't be more technical.
If you have had your alignment done recently, take it back and have them double check the settings.
Hopefully this helps.
Feb 24, 2002 (5:57 pm)
Owned this 99 extended cab since 4/01, bought it used from original owner in Ohio, who bought it new in Cinncinati, Ohio.I just read back a few messages and had some comments. The rear end gear whine , I have deduced is the gear lash in the rear end and have lived with it .I just don,t trust the yahoos at the dealer, My brakes pulsate just like everybody elses. The previous owner had the rotors and pads replaced in CVG and I will live with it till the pads wear out , then i will use aftermarket pads but will try to get rid of the pulsating by cutting the rotors. as far as gas mileage, I have the 3.9 and i get 12 -14 mpg. truck now has 40k on it and i use Mobil 1 oil. engine does sound really loose, almost like a singer sewing machine
Feb 24, 2002 (6:49 pm)
My brother-in-law has a '00 Quad Cab with 40k miles. He has the typical brake problem. The dealership turned his rotors and drums at 25k miles. When they are warped again, we are going to go with the drilled and slotted rotors and upgraded drums. But here is his problem. The power door lock actuators keep going out. The dealer has replaced all four, they have been very good about it too. This has been an awfully puzzling problem, has anyone else had this happen to them?
#406 of 738 Real dumb question
Feb 27, 2002 (10:06 am)
How exactly do you know when your rotors are warped? Yea, I know, I may be dumb, but I've owned 3 vehicles and never have experienced them. Just want to know what to look out for. Tks.
#407 of 738 Re. Rotor Warping
Feb 27, 2002 (10:35 am)
You can usually tell by when you apply the brakes the pedal will pulsate under your foot.
If your asking how they know there warped at the Dealer, they use a gauge to measure the runout.