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'03 TOWN AND COUNTRY RUNNING PROBLEM
I have a 2003 Town and Country 3.8 with 160,000 miles. Wife called me 5 miles away from home saying it is bucking intermittently. I met her on the street and drove for 3 miles until I finally got it to do it for me, kinda like the ignition was being turned off and on quickly while driving. Nothing else just a bucking like motion. I told her to go on and watch it. She called me later saying it is running really rough and had stalled but started back up and made it to destination. I went to meet her again to look at it and this time it was running really badly and hard to keep running , not able to put in drive without stalling. I left it and went back the next day thinking that it had never had a tune up so I replaced plugs, wires, and coil in parking lot. It ran like a sewing machine for 5 miles all the way home except for the last 3 blocks where it started to do the very same thing and barely able to chug it's way home. I unplugged the battery and checked over some of the wiring that I had read Town and Countrys had issues with melting on motor but couldn't find any issues with melted wires. I took off plenum and ran a test of injectors and harness with multi-meter and all checked out fine with the correct readings on both. I connected battery and started it up and it was missing but drivable so I went a mile away and suddenly it did it again running so bad It was like it was running on 2 cylinders. Again, chugging it's way home and barely making it. This time when I got out it felt like there was an inferno coming from under neath, when I looked under I could see through a split in the muffler and it looked like there was a fire inside it was so glowing red and hot. Now I'm thinking there's a clog in the exhaust so needing a muffler anyway I cut the exhaust in front of the muffler. This did nothing but simply make it louder. Next step thinking it could be a cat. converter clogged I took out the upstream O2 sensor to relieve the back pressure and again this did nothing, still the same rough, barely running motor that I started with. I did notice that when I disconnect the map sensor it seems to run better at idle but when I plug it back in when running I can count to 5 and it will die every single time. So I bought a map sensor yet again to no avail, still same problem. I now start to look at the fuel pump so I rent a tester and check the pressure. It holds 60 lbs while running with no drop and doesn't bleed off after turning engine off. I bought a scanner at the local orange parts store and checked the codes but all it showed was the map sensor code from where I unplugged it ,although the check engine light has been on for the last 3 years. I cleared the codes with the scanner and the check engine light still comes on but the scanner says there are no codes. Any thoughts before I dump the gas and lite the match ???? !!! Thank you in advance.


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Location: Oregon
usually an engine that bucks like someone turned the key on and off real quick is a misfire. Secondary ignition would be suspect. coil, wires,plugs... Putting the engine on a scope so you can view the firing pattern while it is missing would tell you what cylinders and the pattern could point you in the direction of what is the problem. Excessive KV could be an open in a spark plug wire. A very low KV could be a shorted wire or low compression. The burn time could show you if the cylinder is not getting enough fuel.

you might want to try another scanner first. You should have had codes stored in the computer. The check engine light should have been flashing on and off while you were driving to say that you have a serious problem. It sounds like you have a misfire going on. Misfires will send raw fuel into the cat. That can overheat the cat and damage it. That's why the check engine flashes, to let you know the problem could damage the cat. The cat works by burning off the extra hydrocarbons that your engine missed in combustion. when you dump excessive fuel, like from a misfire, the cat will try to burn all that excess fuel and get super hot. It could even heat up your floor in the vehicle.

if your computer didn't have any codes, except for the map that you unplugged, you should use a different scanner. With a catalytic converter working that much you should have had codes and/or pending codes for something.

I would not drive it around with it running badly. Your cat might not be damaged yet but if you keep driving it might.

You could also have a bad coil driver in the computer but that should have a code also. Disconnecting the battery and clearing the codes will make if harder for the next person to try and figure out what is going on because you have erased the information that might have been stored in the computer.

Some scanners may seem to ask for manufacturer specifics like they have information from the dealer but then just look at generic OBD2 when scanning for codes. OBD2 generic is for emissions. Manufacturer specific will have a lot more information


   
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I have a similar problem with my 2007 town and country. Did you resolve the issue? Any suggestions? I've changed the plugs, wires, coil, erg, map sensor. It still runs terribly and has a blinking engine light.


   
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@grafhick, have you scanned for the codes? Have you checked the coil output?


   
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I did scan the codes. It gave me p0100 air flow, e g r, turbocharger, and misfire, I have changed all the plugs,wires, coil, egr, map sensor,and it is still giving me a blinking check engine light. So I have been scared to drive it someplace to try a better reader.


   
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Yea, I would need to know all the code numbers to understand what's happening better.

If the engine is running badly that could give the mass air flow sensor code. (or a bad MAF could give you a running problem. but I would look at the misfires first)

you're going to need a scanner to see what the data stream shows is happening when it's acting up.

If you're good in the spark department next thing to look at is your fuel. Fuel pressure, fuel injector... The misfire codes could help narrow it down. Looking at the O2 sensors and the fuel trims would give you an idea on what could be happening too. Without a scanner, it's hard to diagnose some running problems.

When the check engine light flashes it's to warn you that continued driving could damage the catalytic converter. So, you're correct not to drive unless you have to.


   
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I've had the usual Chrysler T&C instrument panel/lockout problems. Replaced the whole instrument cluster once, then re-soldered the connector pins on the circuit board. That problem seems to be solved.

Now my speedometer jumps up to about 38mph when you turn the ignition switch on. From there it goes up the correct amount for my speed, I just subtract 40 mph. When I hit 80mph it says about 120! Also the odometer seems to rack up the miles quite a bit faster than actual.

I found out and tried the sequence for realigning the needles (press Trip and Reset then turn on the key switch)
and everything checks out except the problem of the needle jumping up to 38mph.

An ideas on how to correct this problem?
Thanks, Leonard


   
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you should drive it with a scanner looking at the vehicle speed.If the speedo is always off by the "38" mph you might try removing the cluster cover and see if you can reset the speedo needle. (take the needle off and put it back on in the correct position.

but, if the speedo is off and it's because the needle motor is bad anything you do is temporary because it will move again. Repair the piece or buy a rebuilt cluster.


   
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