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Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

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  #1  
Old 07-18-2004, 03:42 PM
rw1644h rw1644h is offline
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Default Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

The 100K routine maintenance for my GC is rapidly approaching. I've been a DIY mechanic for quite a few years. This is my first mini-van.

Spark plugs: Is this a job I can handle or what? The 3 plugs in front seem easily accessible. How should I access the rear 3?

Tranny fluid: I had it replaced recently when it was in the shop to fix a slight tranny leak.

Serpentine Idler chattering noise: I've noticed this on many GC's. Wondering if this is the belt idler. What's the problem ? Easy job for the DIY'r?

Thanks in advance......
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Old 07-18-2004, 05:39 PM
JCswm JCswm is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

yea.... they put those 100k spark plugs in there for a reason...... They are a REAL SOB to change With a hoist!!!
make sure the engine is stone cold..... You'll be hugging the converter!!!
Replace the tentioner and the belt, Very common problem, one 15mm nut holds it on!! easy job.
IMHO the Most Important (since the trans is done)is the Fuel filter!!!!!
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Old 07-24-2004, 01:12 PM
rw1644h rw1644h is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

With regards to the tensioner: Do you mean I can remove the faulty tensioner by removing the 15mm nut (after, of course removing the belt)?

The engines been running rich (i.e. smelly exhaust, mostly when cold but also rich(somewhat) when warm)
I checked for faults codes: 23 then 55. From my research, 23 may be a Air temp sensor, O2 sensor, or Start of codes.
55 is end of codes.
Can you help clarify the 23 code?
Also, do you know where the Air Temp sensor is located?
Are there two O2 sensors? If so, which one is most likely the culprit? Does it make sense to replace both?
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Old 07-24-2004, 03:31 PM
JCswm JCswm is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

The tentioner is that easy to replace!!!!
The upstream o2 is used for fuel trim, downstream is only to monitor the cat conv. so replace the upstream if your running rich
If I'm not mistaken the Air temp sensor IS the battery temp sensor on your van (unless there is a sensor in the rubber boot to the throttle body)
I can't find a code 23, I need a "P" code like P0455 from a DRB3 scan tool (dealer only)
Let me know if that helps,
John
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Old 07-24-2004, 07:57 PM
rw1644h rw1644h is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

Thanks, John..

Man, that Air Temp Sensor is elusive. I just can't find it. I removed the air cleaner housing to give me some seeing room. No luck.
I reached up inside the air tube and it felt like there could be a sensor in the airtube right behind the headlight. If it is, removing it could be a nasty job. You mentioned in your post that it might be the battery temp sensor . Would removing the battery maybe help me find this little bugger ?


Tensioner: It appears that I can replace the tensioner pulley or the tensioner assembly. Removing the tensioner pulley sounds simpler, easier and cheaper as opposed to the removing the assembly. Is pulley replacement you're suggestion?

Thanks,
Bob
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Old 07-24-2004, 11:42 PM
JCswm JCswm is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

The Tentioner Assy is replaced by one 15mm nut .... right by #1 spark plug. I use a long extention, a knuckle and a shallow socket but I'm pretty big, you might be able to get your arm up there and use a wrench

remove the battery.... the round black plastic thing in the middle of the battery tray is the batt temp/Intake air temp sensor
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Old 07-25-2004, 05:07 PM
rw1644h rw1644h is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

John,

I took out the battery & tray and lo and behold an unterminated sensor connector wire. I looked and looked and looked and could not find a lonesome sensor. So I put it back together. I planned on going to a junkyard to find where this wire goes to. But wouldn't you know, when I went to get some gas this afternoon, a guy with a 1998 Town&Country was next to me at the gaspumps. We popped his hood and I found where the sensor is located. It's located on a sheet metal piece that is near the hood hinges, plain as day.

I neglected to say that this vehicle had been in wreck last summer. I now know that the collision shop forgot to put the sensor back on.


Another question regarding the tensioner pulley: If I try to wrench the 15mm nut, won't the tensioner flex on its spring? Will this cause me problems when trying to torque the nut tight or will the tensioner "bottom out"?

Thanks,
Bob
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Old 08-11-2004, 05:46 PM
JoeT JoeT is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

To replace the rear 3 spark plugs push the alternator to the back and remove the intake manifold strut on driver side. Give it a big hug as you reach back there and use a spark plug lead remover tool to avoid breaking the lead boots. I would get someone else to do it, if you can afford the labour costs, its a nasty job.
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Old 08-15-2004, 01:29 AM
wcroyal wcroyal is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

On the tensioner question, I believe you're actually not replacing the entire spring mechanism -- only the tensioner pulley itself. So you don't have to worry about "reloading" the spring... To reach the 15mm bolt, just use a long box-end wrench, which you'll also need to push on the tensioner to remove the belt. Another good choice would be a breaker bar and a 15mm crowfoot wrench attachment. BTW my 1997 T&C popped two serpentine belts at 40k and 45k before the mechanic figured out the problem. Been fine ever since (although I just put a new belt on yesterday as part of the 120K miles/200Km service; we'll see if I screwed anything up...)

And today I'm in the middle of changing the rear plugs. This is not a fun job. Nitrile rubber gloves have saved me a coupla busted knuckles already...

Bill
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Old 08-18-2004, 05:47 AM
wcroyal wcroyal is offline
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Default RE: Spark plug replacement on 2000 Grand Caravan

Okay, not that anyone's interested, but I'm almost finished with my 120k mile routine maintenance... plugs are done (WHAT A PAIN); PCV replaced (plus a new rear breather hose); air filter replaced (plus a new front breather hose!); new serp. belt; oil change & engine flush; tires rotated; fuel filter replaced; tranny fluid/filter replaced. Breather hoses were hard as a rock and crumbled as soon as I touched them. Only required *one* extra trip to the dealer.

Now all I have left is a messy coolant job. I've had a slow coolant leak for a couple of weeks and thought at first it was probably the hose; but after more reading it probably is the o-ring on the water pump, so I'll be putting a new WP on tomorrow when I flush & fill. (Argh, time to take the drive belt back off... ) I'm also replacing the top/bottom radiator hoses at the same time.

The reason I wrote all this is to share a point -- none of these little jobs were difficult (even the plugs weren't all that bad, now that I've figured out how to reach the rear ones), and yes, I did save over $400 USD in labor (local Chrysler dealer wanted $570 just to get started; no doubt the water pump would have cost me a lot extra); but most importantly, doing the work myself forced me to crawl around underneath my car. In the process I found an inner CV boot leaking (and making a real mess of my underbody) and also a rear shock leaking oil. Most likely the CV joint has been leaking for months and no doubt it was leaking when it went in for inspection in June. But do you think anyone bothered to mention it to me when they had it up on the rack? ha!

And, I've gotten a chance to get acquinted with my *very* metric American van and put some "road miles" on my Haynes manual. It's no FSM but actually, I can't complain too much about the content. Definitely worth the $15.
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Old 08-18-2004, 05:47 AM
 
 
 
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2000, 23, 97, caravan, change, code, front, grand, location, miles, plug, plugs, replace, replacement, spark

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