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Dodge Dakota, Truck
#2742 of 4362 Re: 4.7 (287) engine stalling
Apr 25, 2004 (8:35 am)
Arranger, yes the 4.7 does idle low for a engine nowadays, especially for a smogger. As far as reports of stalling, I think this is like the reports of Chrysler automatic transmission failures. One stalling 4.7 has turned into thousands by continued repeating of those glad to spead the negative word.
My 2003 has never stalled at nearly 24,000 miles. I've talked to several dozen 4.7 owners and they all have had nothing but praise for how the little 287 runs and no reports of stalling. I believe there was a Chrysler TSB that addressed some idle issue back in 2000, and I think there has been two PCM reflashes that were issued for the 4.7 since its been introduced.
What you might experience is an inconsistent idle at times. As I approached 12,000 mine would occasionally idle a little rough, especially in the extreme cold weather months. Most of the time it idles very good. Some have reported changing spark plugs and resolving the issue. I removed the factory Champions and installed Bosch+4s. The first few days it idled like glass, but within a month I experienced one rough idle day. In all cases, moving the heater control into a defrost mode would smooth out the idle. Depending on fuel quality, the idle air port in the throttlebody can become gummy and cause irratic idle. I've never done mine, maybe because I use nothing but Mobil gas. I did do one a while back on a 2001 Dakota. I removed the Idle Air Controller Motor, spray cleaned the port and neoprene pintle. That did resolve the issue on that vehicle.
Chrysler has decided to idle the 287 engine quite low and I suspect it wasn't just an arbitrary thing. My guess would be to meet emissions. I have the California emissions version. In warmer weather it idles fine. I would guess the 4.7s with federal emissions package are less finicky. I've talked to the Dodge technicians and they report "only a couple" of 4.7s with complaints of actual stalling, both on vehicles assembled before December of 2002. None since.
As to transmission problems, if you have the 4.7 in a Dakota you have the 545RFE transmission. I have heard of two complete failures in a Dodge truck and both within a very short period of time od sale. My Dodge technician said they've only ever seen one apart and that was in a 2000 Grand Cherokee. The 545RFE is a fabulous transmission and it has a reputation so far of being almost bulletproof. Perform all required maintenance on it and I'll bet you'll never have it apart.
Always remember one thing: never use Dexron-Mercon ATF in a Chrysler built truck automatic.
#2743 of 4362 More on Coolants for Chrysler products (scruplek)
Apr 25, 2004 (10:19 am)
Please don't feel embarrassed at not knowing something. You'd be surprised at how many people are suppose to know that don't or don't know and won't admit it.
Here's what I know.
The type of coolant that is prescribed by Chrysler for use in 4.7 (287cid) engine-equiped vehicles is technically know as G 05. This material was developed by Valvoline and is currently supplied to Chrysler by Zerex as Mopar(R) MS-9769. This is a phosphate free, low silicate, ethylene glygol-based formula. This patented material also contains a defoamer and various corrosion inhibitors. It was designed by Vavloline to be a universal coolant, meaning used in a wide application range. It has a much broader freezing and boiling range than conventional glygol-based materials (50-70%). The additive package is listed as Long Life Specification, Automotive Specifications (ASTM D 3306), Universal Specifications (ASTM D 3306 & 4985), and the Fully Formulated Precharged Specification (ASTM D 6210). Mopar MS-9769 is the specified coolant for Cummins equiped Dodge trucks and Mercedes cars and approved by Ford North America for all newer models.
It is a hybrid technology known as HOAT or Hybrid Organic Additive Technology, as opposed to Organic Additive Technology, known as OAT. Dexcool (GM) and Toyota coolants are examples of OAT. These two types should never be mixed. In addition, ethylene glycol (EG) and propylene glycol (PG) mixtures should never be mixed.
There are different colors used in automotive coolants world wide: green, red, pink, blue, yellow, and gold. Color cannot be used to determine the coolant formulation.. The best example is Chrysler's use of green for its HOAT.
From what I can tell the only safe material to use in a 4.7 Dodge truck is the Mopar MS-9769. I cannot tell you at the moment if the 4267020-AB is or is not HOAT. It could be. I do suspect that the coolant you're independent technician used was incorrect since a conventional ethylene glygol-based coolant would be aggressively corrosive to an aluminum system if it did not contain the anti-corrosion additive package. What usually happens is fine aluminum particles clog the heater core. I have been told that the additive package is available aftermarket and can be added to conventional ethylene glygol antifreeze, but I've never seen it.
It is possible that you now know more than either your dealer's service staff or the independent technician.
#2744 of 4362 MS-9769 Boil/Freeze Protection
Apr 25, 2004 (10:35 am)
% antifreeze = freeze point = boil point:
40% = -12F = 260F
50% = -34F = 265F
70% = -90F = 277F
Maximum corrosion protection of MS-9769 occurs at 70% when mixed with distilled water.
Apr 25, 2004 (11:28 am)
thanks for all your help. I have always spent alot of money on vehicles and have been lemons. I went against what my consumer reports said when it put the dakota on the "used cars not to buy" list...im hoping my insincts were right. i bought a 2000 dakota slt 4x4 4.7l v8....with 62k miles on it, with the auto transmission, infinity pack...new tires and blah blah. I got the truck for 12,500, and i put a warranty(powertrain) on it...i got it for 14,500 with tax and liscence(im in minnesota btw)...good deal? any more suggestions on how i can maintain my dakota would be great guys!
#2746 of 4362 Actually Dusty
Apr 25, 2004 (12:02 pm)
"Arranger, yes the 4.7 does idle low for a engine nowadays, especially for a smogger. As far as reports of stalling, I think this is like the reports of Chrysler automatic transmission failures. One stalling 4.7 has turned into thousands by continued repeating of those glad to spead the negative word.
There's lots more than just one. Well one if you just count me. But during my struggles with this, the service manager told me it was affecting Jeeps too. Enough that a TSB was put out to address that. I don't honestly feel a multibillion dollar company would go to such lengths just for one person.
Likewise with their awful 604 Ultradrive...it was so bad it got black marks from CU, Motor Trend, and C&D.
#2747 of 4362 Mopar..............
Apr 25, 2004 (1:39 pm)
My comment wasn't meant to imply that there was only one owner of a 4.7 that had a stalling problem, but that one report generates the perception of many after being repeated so often.
I have yet to talk to any owner in person that has experienced this on their 4.7. The techs at my dealership seem to indicate that, yes, they've had two but that's two out of a couple of thousand 4.7s they've sold. That's .1% Maybe there are geographical or environmental conditions that are present with this issue that explain a difference. I don't know.
Unfortunately I see no evidence that this stalling issue was prominent in 4.7s, at least around here. Even in the Edmunds forum I can only recount two or three.
As far as the A604, can't agree with you more.
#2748 of 4362 Arranger..................
Apr 25, 2004 (2:58 pm)
Well, for the Western New York State area I think that price would be a little high. However, some of this depends on the equipment your Dakota has. Also, if you got the extended warranty that could explain the different. Some of those get to be pricey.
In October of 2002 I paid #13,700 (+ tax) cash for my new 2003 Club Cab Sport Plus, 2WD, 4.7, auto, Air, PS, PB, PW, 60/40 seating, AM-FM/Cassette/CD, sliding rear window, limited slip, off-road package.
Your's has the SLT package, which I think in 2000 was all the chrome, side moldings, and leather interior (or was that the SLT+?). Four-wheel drive added about $1500, I think, onto the new price.
Value can be somewhat subjective. I'd give more for an especially clean vehicle or one that I thought was in better that average condition mechanically. If your's was a one-owner then they must have been pleased with it enough to keep it 62,000 miles. That's generally a very good sign. Real low mileage for the year could indicate a repo, death, just not happy, repaired after a wreck, or an issue that can't be resolved.
I guess you're in Minnesota. One thing, despite any flaws in the Dakota perceived or otherwise, they are one of the last to show signs of rust. I live in the "salt belt." The winters here are probably somewhat more docile than yours, but ten-year Fords and eight-year GMs are usually popping a hole somewhere on the body. S10s and Toyota's small trucks disintegrate so quickly that on a quiet night you can hear them rusting.
I think you will find that the Dakota body will be with you longer than most.
#2749 of 4362 Clarification
Apr 25, 2004 (3:44 pm)
After I got the third and final update to my PCM, the stalling and low idle problems went away.
And, contrary to reports, fuel mileage did not go down and at no time did I have issues with spark knock.
Hey dusty, lets petition DC to bring back the 727 ok? Oh, how I miss that transmission! Durable, reliable, easy to service, and very forgiving of a lead footed teenager, its the finest automatic ever built.
#2750 of 4362 Mopar..................
Apr 25, 2004 (4:16 pm)
Actually, the A-727 lives today in the form of the 45, 46, 47, and 48RE. There are of course some differences but the basic architechure is still the same. The A-727 and A-904s were strictly hydraulic shifters without an overdrive. I think the ratios are even the same in some versions. And there have been some refinements. But there most certainly was never a simpler and more durable transmission ever built by anybody, that's for sure. A-727 TorqueFlites are still used in racing and at least two companies are making them new.
Unfortunately the A-727 would be considered outmoded by today's standards. The beauty of the A-727 was it's ruggedness and simple design, less to go wrong and far easier to repair. But it's beauty of the 1950s - 1970s would be it's downfall today. It would be criticized heavily for being unrefined against newer designs.
If you accept the concept of electronically controlled engagement and shifting, the current "RE" series is just as robust and durable. They will be less tolerant of irregular maintenance and being more complicated will be more likely mathematically to have a problem. Heck, a friend of mine was ready to spend $1800 on a 46RE in his '99 RAM a while back until he found out that bad plug wires was causing his problem. You didn't have things like that facing you in the days of the A-727!
Apr 26, 2004 (7:01 am)
who'd a thunk that plug wires could be a problem.
I guess my complaint with the 45RFE is it simply never shifted properly from the get go. Not sure why or what because I never could get the dealer to understand my problem. All I got was, transmission functioning as designed. Well, I beg to differ. Any tranny unless it has a B&M shift kit that shifts so hard that it rattles the ring and pinion and makes the driver think he hit a pothole, has a problem somewhere.
I even printed out the TSB on the harsh 2-3 upshift and I got blank stares. Seems no one at the dealer wanted to admit this was a problem.
Well its all history now anyway. I do hope DC did get its act together on this because transmissions were Chrysler's ace in the hole.
Yes, the 727 was outdated. But it worked. No fuss no muss. It just worked.