The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi! I have a 1998 LXi. I've been having some belt issues lately. Started out with the belt falling off when it went through a puddle. Bought a Gates kit, installed it, and all was fine for about a week. Then it started squealing. I tried and tried to get it stop squealing to no avail. Finally bought a new OEM tensioner and a new Gates belt (one-sided) and reinstalled the old idler pulley. No more squealing, but the belt fell off again when it was raining really badly. You can tell that something is misaligned because the belt rides on the tensioner and water pump crooked. Everything looks to be inline except the harmonic balancer. You can look down from the A/C pulley and see that it's off by about 1 belt thread. It needs to be moved closer to the engine but it is at its limit. Has anyone ever had this issue? Can you install the harmonic balancer backwards so that the "lip" is facing outward so that it is able to get closer to the engine? Thanks for the help!
 

·
Man. Mopar. Minivan.
Joined
·
3,895 Posts
Welcome!

Hmm... I'm not sure if it can be installed backwards... have you had your dealer take a look at it?

:hi2: Welcome to The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums! :biggrin:

Established in July of 2003, Glen Millar's Chrysler Minivan Fan Club has become the #1 online destination for owners and fans of America's favorite and best-selling minivan. We are very passionate about the Chrysler Town & Country, Dodge Caravan/Grand Caravan, and Plymouth Voyager/Grand Voyager vehicles we drive. Now with over 10,000 members from the United States and around the globe, we hope that our collective experience can be of assistance to you with your own Chrysler minivan(s), and we look forward to learning from your experience as well. After all, the more that is shared, the richer our community becomes. Here is some information that you may or may not have already heard that will help you get acquainted with the club and the online forums:

As with any community we would ask that you review the legal and privacy policies for Chrysler Minivan Fan Club. The following link includes important copyright, affiliation and disclaimer information as well as the fan club forum's rule, guidelines and violation consequences. This information can be reviewed at http://www.chryslerminivan.net/legal.html. Click HERE to browse the Frequently Asked Questions portion of the site.

First, a word about Technical Service Bulletins [TSBs] / Recalls. If you are new to the forum, please have your vehicle identification number [VIN] ready along with the make, model, trim and engine size [e.g. 3.3L V6]. Many problems can be resolved with a vehicle by making sure that it is up to date on all recall/TSB repairs. These repairs can be completed FREE of charge at your local authorized Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep dealer. You can check the recall status of your vehicle by calling your service department OR by going online: To do so, have your VIN number ready and go to http://www.chrysler.com/en/owners/ for all Chrysler brand vehicles, and http://www.dodge.com/en/owners/ for all Dodge brand vehicles. For all Plymouth brand vehicles, please contact your authorized Chrysler dealer.

We would highly encourage you to pick up a Haynes/Chilton Repair Manual and/or Factory Service Manual [FSM] for your model year Chrysler minivan. They are available online, as well as at several retail auto parts stores. These books are a great reference and will save you a lot of time and trouble when working on your vehicle, it is money well spent! You may also wish to invest in one or more online services that offer the same or more information. A good one that I have had experience with is AllDataDIY.com. **Please Note: Third-party manuals are not guaranteed to have all of the information you might need to complete a repair, so you may need to consult several different sources in order to get the knowledge necessary to complete the job.

Please take a moment to familiarize yourself with the forum's functions. Located at the top of the forum's page is the SEARCH function. This is a very powerful tool that can help you find the answer to several very commonly asked questions. I would advise you to make this your first stop before posting a new thread in the forums, as someone may have already asked your question previously and gotten an answer. You may have to try several different search terms, so please be patient! To say "Thank You!" to a member who offered useful information to you, you can click on the "Thanks" icon that appears in the bottom right-hand corner of their post.

Finally, I would invite you to join the Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Online Showroom. Should you like, please take a digital photograph of your minivan from the front driver's side corner. Then, all you need to do is email the photograph in an attachment to [email protected], making sure to put your forum username in the SUBJECT line of the email. Your photograph will be automatically uploaded to the showroom. Once you're done, go to www.tinyurl.com/d39osq to view the online showroom and see your vehicle on display amongst all of ours! [If you'd like to see some examples of pictures you can always view the showroom first!]

Click HERE For More Information The Online Showroom

Utilizing the "User CP" link at the top left corner of the page, please fill out your user profile. In addition, it would be most helpful to us if you would please include your vehicle(s)' information year, make, model, trim and mileage in your signature so we may reference it if need be on your posts. [e.g. "1996 Chrysler Town & Country LXi 123,456 Miles | 198 683 kms"] As always, should you have any questions, please ask.

Again, welcome to the Chrysler Minivan Fan Club. :thumb:

-Chrysler1924

Note: If you would like to advertise your business on The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club, there are several options available. This is a fun, inexpensive way to support this burgeoning community and promote your business. For more information, please visit http://www.chryslerminivan.net/advertise.htm

Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Mopar are all registered trademarks of Chrysler LLC.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,508 Posts
Harmonic Balancer ......
You're talking about the pulley on the crank (?), I presume.

It would help tremendously if you enlightened us with which engine 2.xL, 3.0L, 3.3L, 3.8L, 4.0L engine you have. Also, if you recently bought this van, or you've had it since day one? Has any engine work been done to it?

What's your mileage?

I ask that, because, either your crank pulley is coming loose, or someone didn't "re-install" it, fully on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Sorry, I posted that question in a hurry and realized later that I didn't include all the information. Yes, I'm talking about the crankshaft pulley. The van has a 3.8L V6, 226,000 miles. I've owned it since 2005 & 150,000 miles. Bought it from my in-laws who bought it new. Van was babied by them. Haven't had any real issues with it (and neither did they) besides replacing a water pump, replaced the contacts on the starter, new spark plugs and wires, and a torque converter. Oh, and that pesky fan relay - I'm on #3 of those. I'm going to get a license plate that says "P1491sux" on it. :)

I have not taken it to a dealer. I usually try to figure out what is wrong with it on my own via my Haynes manual, Google, and this forum. Being a woman and from my past experiences, I have an aversion to mechanics - I haven't found one around me that I trust or that I think knows what they're doing. I know they're out there, just haven't been lucky enough to find one yet. I avoid them if at all possible. Plus I enjoy taking things apart, so it's fun for me to work on the van myself.

I have watched the crankshaft pulley while the van is running and it doesn't appear to be wobbling, as I've seen in other posts. I recently replaced all the gaskets around the engine (valve covers, intake manifold, timing chain cover, oil pan) because I had a water/oil leak around the timing chain cover and there was oil/dirt gunk all over the engine. I didn't pay attention to the alignment beforehand because I figured the belt jumping off was just due to a defect and I had one of those Gates kits to solve that (the belt came off once on the in-laws while they had it and it's popped off 3 or 4 times since I've had it). I took one of the motor mounts off to get to the timing chain cover, but it is on snug and does not move around. Basically, I'm not really sure how it got out of alignment - if it was always that way, or just recently - but it is. And I don't see any way of correcting it short of getting it closer to the engine. I do remember that the pulley was farther away from the engine prior to me removing it to get to the timing chain cover so I'm assuming that it's always been out of alignment.

Hope that's enough information. I've been working on the van off and on since December so I sometimes forget what all I've done. Feels like I've done a lot, but when you list it out it seems like nothing. Guess that's because you have to take half the car apart to get to anything. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,029 Posts
Have you considered the double-sided micro V-belt kit? Gates makes a version of it, I think Goodyear does also.

Here's a link to a reseller that sells the gates kit:
http://www.midwayautosupply.com/p-48526-gates-system-solution-micro-v-kit-for-chrysler-33l-and-38l-engines-38379k.aspx

"Once in awhile a design comes along that can test your wits.
Take the 3.0L, 3.3L and 3.8L engines found on 1996-2000 Chrysler Voyager, Grand Voyager, Caravan and Grand Caravan mini vans. The serpentine belt can come off the drive when the vehicle is driven into a deep puddle of water or through a snow bank. And when the belt comes off, your customer can be left stranded.

A better solution has been developed by the Gates engineers. The System Solution includes a double sided Micro-V belt, a grooved idler pulley and matching tensioner which includes a grooved pulley. "
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,572 Posts
The factory manual shows how the pulley should be pressed onto the shaft using a special tool (simply a screw with a thrust bearing). If it really is sitting as deep as it should, the only way to account for misalignment is that the crankshaft has too much axial play. But that's not something that can happen overnight.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,058 Posts
hi mate i had the same issues, if you check my postinh history you might find some hints on the solution... (briefly) look up above fanbelt there is a drain thats takes water of the screen when raining, sometimes the pipe pops of draining onto the belt, not the road...:beerchug:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I do have the double-sided belt kit from Gates. That is what is squealing. No squealing with one-sided belt and OEM tensioner/idler pulley. I'll look for the drain pipe, but the only time the belt comes off is when it's pouring down rain or you go through a puddle.

It could be the crankshaft itself that is messed up. Didn't really think of that. That would cause other issues as well though right? Engine runs slightly rough sometimes, but I chalked that up to 226,000 miles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
790 Posts
edvarla, i guess, you need to install the OEM conversion kit.
it's include tensioner pulley, idler pulley and belt.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
385 Posts
Sounds like the outer pulley is moving off of the center hub on your harmonic balancer so the harmonic balancer needs replacing (before it moves farther out).
 

·
1000 Post Club Member
Joined
·
1,985 Posts
In the old days,the balancer was a huge chunk of steel,with just an outer ring pressed over a rubber ring.This metal outer ring had timing marks on it.The actual pulley was bolted onto the front of the balancer so there was no load on the rubber bonded sandwhich.Now,they apply the pulley grooves to that outer ring,so any load (PS Pump,Alternator,AC compressor) gets soaked up by the rubber.It cant take it forever.Nowadays nothing can.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top