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I discovered this crack yesterday; it is in the roof just on top of the sliding door. I found it on both sides of the van and at the beginnings and the ends of the sliding doors. Any thoughts about this??
 

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The roof panel is weld-bonded to the sides, meaning they attach it with adhesive and then spot weld.
These joints are known to fail on 3d gen. minivans, and also on some other makes, causing mysterious water leaks.
The suggested fix is flowable silicone caulk.
 

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Depending on your year and mileage, the recommended repair might be to visit the dealer?

That's sad to see though. Means there must be some body flex, which is hard for a big box type of structure like these things.
 
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Is this really a huge widespread problem with the 3rd gens? Neither of mine have it and one is 15 years old...
 

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WOW!
Unless the vehicle was "hit hard" on the sides, and incorrectly repaired, I consider this a major factory defect!
The problem is that, because of the mileage, Chrysler isn't going to see it that way.
Silicone sealer will stop the leak for now, but IMHO the only correct repair, would be to have them welded. Unless this is done, I'd be very concerned about the cracks "growing".
Welding the cracks would almost certainly involve removing the headliner, and all the trim and roof rack in the vicinity. Of course, after that, there would be "finish work" including painting, and reassembly.
 

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paart hit the nail on the head.

It HAS to be welded and then re finished to make sure it doesn't get worse. An 05 would be out of warranty though. The problem being on both sides is very odd, like maybe the spot welder was having a bad day?
 

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If the idea is to repair it correctly, the entire roof panel need to be removed and re-joined to the sides
with adhesive and welding. This idea is not practical though.
 

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It might not be all that bad. Without the luxury of looking at my van, as it is out right now, the pic suggests maybe it is only a bead of sealant that has separated and lifted from the lower sheetmetal part, maybe from weather extremes. You know, heat drying it up, expansion and contraction from heating and cooling, allowing air underneath to further dry it up, then further expansion and contraction, then possibly water getting under there to start a bit of rust, which expands steel and causes displacement. I think it's a bead that is applied after the body(or at least that part of it) is spot welded together, to seal it. It's all done before paiinting so there's no paint under that sealant. Is there a leak into the cabin? If the actual lap joint of the 2 pieces of metal is further back from that bead, then it's probably still together. If that's the case then hopefully a cleaning under that opening and a good application of some kind of caulk should suffice.
 

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Somebody overloaded the roof racks. :lol: Saw a minivan today, stopped along the highway, the driver checking what looked like a half dozen sheets of gyproc on its roof racks. Wonder what shape that roof will be it when he unloads.

I wouldn't panic over that joint. It's not a pretty joint to begin with and requires lots of sealant to fill. On my van, the joint is covered by the lower rubber door seal so I don't even see it. You could clean the joint and top it up with white silicone automotive sealant. I wouldn't try to do anything with the metal like weld it or rivet it. Is there any evidence of body flex like cracks in the adjacent paint? I would think not.
 

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Our 3rd gens were built when Chrysler still cared (sort of, ish) about build quality. There are 4th gens.
Now, now, you are beginning to sound like Chris. :lol: No rusted strut towers on the 4Gs that I know of, better headlights and brakes too. Then there's J D Power giving the 2006 Caravan a top dependability rating, over the Japanese duet even. :thumb:

Amazingly, in spite of a disportionate number of ownership changes over recent years, Chrysler has put out some good vehicles. I have two of them.
 

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My 2005 short Caravan is ok and not showing any cracking.
Hank
 

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Now, now, you are beginning to sound like Chris. :lol: No rusted strut towers on the 4Gs that I know of, better headlights and brakes too. Then there's J D Power giving the 2006 Caravan a top dependability rating, over the Japanese duet even. :thumb:

Amazingly, in spite of a disportionate number of ownership changes over recent years, Chrysler has put out some good vehicles. I have two of them.
I know, I thought of CJ after I had typed that haha. My prolem with almost ALL new vehicles are just the little things. You pay good money for a 21st century product, and weird things happen.

I hope the OP's crack doesn't lead to any premature rust anywhere. Madbrad could also be correct in that its just some body caulk that lifted off.
 

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Just checked and mine is cracked on both sides. I don't believe it's a weld crack. I think it's the hard sealer that they Chrysler used, but then again the roof section has moved from the body enough to cause the seams to crack.

I filled my main cracks, the ones in the front and back of the sliding door, with black silicone rubber, but their is a small crack running all the way to the rear of the car. I'm going to look for some silver sealer to fill that crack.

BTW, mine is an R car.

I think all those of us who have cracks should file a report with the NHTSA:

http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/ivoq/

I will claim it is a safety defect, as it will effect roof strength, especially if it allows water into the body and causes internal rusting.

Remember, if we don't report, they will never know.
 

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It's not a hard sealant, it's a bonding adhesive. Note once again that the failure occurs along the entire seam, but you can only see it around door openings because there the roof panel
comes out a little more.
 
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