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Three weekends ago I:

Rotated the tires
Lubed the chassis
Checked the brakes
Found a bad end link (source of the creeeeeeeak)

Two weekends ago I:

Replaced the antenna (%$#^% carwash) - The whole thing.
Installed an I-pod adapter (easy when you replacing the antenna anyway)
Replaced a sway bar end link
Replaced the headlight switch
Lubed the rear wiper
Fixed some more tailgate rust

This weekend I plan to:

Change the oil
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I can already see how this thread is going to be helpful.....

How and where did you lube the chassis?

I thought I read in another thread that the Caravans dont have a place to do that ?
 

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I can already see how this thread is going to be helpful.....

How and where did you lube the chassis?

I thought I read in another thread that the Caravans dont have a place to do that ?
I do not know if they had them OEM but I have zirks on:

Ball joints
Sway bar end links.
 

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I can already see how this thread is going to be helpful.....

How and where did you lube the chassis?

I thought I read in another thread that the Caravans dont have a place to do that ?
You can take the small "plug" out of the bottom our your ball joints and install zerk grease fittings into them. That's what I did to my '97 so I could grease the ball joints. :thumb: It unscrews and then you can get the zerk's from autozone or wherever and screw them in.
 

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Hopefully the racial slurs will stop. Yesterday morning I fixed my trans by replacing the broken OD hub and last night I replaced a trans on my 99 T&C that had a diff pin go thru the case. Yes these are my vans, I own them. I'm in the van business. I buy broken ones, fix them and sell them. I also fix vehicles for customers. However, these vans do belong to me so therefor I repaired two of my vans yesterday.

Today, I replaced a waterpump on my 1998 3.0. I'd rather do a trans, it's a lot faster
 

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I don't know how you do those trannys so fast. I did one for a customer today, just a used re and re on a 1996. It took me 5 hours, no fixing, just replacing.
My hats off to you sir!
Any tricks you would be willing to share?
 

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Great tools, great equipment and lots of experience is the tip of the day. Gen1-2 3.3 trans takes me 1.5hrs to swap, gen 3 2hrs, gen 4 2-2.5hrs. Stupid gen4 changed the rear mount and made it a real pain to get at one of the 3 bolts.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Great posts everyone! Lots of TLC going into our Minivans :headbange

Well, I got 2 new Yokohama rear tires today and removed the rear brake drum and inspected the innards. Looks like I have leaky wheel cylinders so tomorrow Im replacing the brake pads, cleaning the brake assembly (while wearing a OSHA approved mask) and replacing both wheel cylinders.

Hope to get the front two tires tomorrow.
 

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Well with being a mechanic with a tool fetish for over 25 years, I've got the tools. Shop has a great hoist, tranny jack and engine support tools. So I guess I have to work on the experience part :cool:. It's an all makes shop, so I don't really see many Caravan's and I hope I don't have to gain experience on mine!!

Great tools, great equipment and lots of experience is the tip of the day. Gen1-2 3.3 trans takes me 1.5hrs to swap, gen 3 2hrs, gen 4 2-2.5hrs. Stupid gen4 changed the rear mount and made it a real pain to get at one of the 3 bolts.
 

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Well with being a mechanic with a tool fetish for over 25 years, I've got the tools. Shop has a great hoist, tranny jack and engine support tools. So I guess I have to work on the experience part :cool:. It's an all makes shop, so I don't really see many Caravan's and I hope I don't have to gain experience on mine!!
You got me beat by a bunch. Your on a minivan forum and don't see many caravans? seems odd.

w/o a hoist or trans jack, I can do gen2's in 3hrs. I use a cherry picker to lower and raise the trans.

I'd do a FWD Chrysler trans over any other domestic. GM and Ford fWD you have to remove just about the whole front of the car. The last Taurus trans I did took me over 6hrs.
 

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Your on a minivan forum and don't see many caravans? seems odd.
Well, my wife and I both own a caravan, it's nice to see what goes wrong with them. And if I can help people out with some advise, all the better. I do actually see quite a few caravans, just not for tranny's. Most of our customers would just get a rebuild, and there is a local shop that does very good work that we sub rebuilding automatics out to.
I've been thinking of doing more caravan trannies as I can pick up very nice vans around here with a blown tranny for next to nothing. Right now there is a beautifull 98 with 180000km, full load, leather with captains chairs, paint as shiny as new, brand new michelin tires, $500 Canadian because the tranny is shot.
 

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Well, my wife and I both own a caravan, it's nice to see what goes wrong with them. And if I can help people out with some advise, all the better. I do actually see quite a few caravans, just not for tranny's. Most of our customers would just get a rebuild, and there is a local shop that does very good work that we sub rebuilding automatics out to.
I've been thinking of doing more caravan trannies as I can pick up very nice vans around here with a blown tranny for next to nothing. Right now there is a beautifull 98 with 180000km, full load, leather with captains chairs, paint as shiny as new, brand new michelin tires, $500 Canadian because the tranny is shot.

That's how I make my living. I go thru at least 100 vans/ yr. I'm buying 3 more this week with bad trans. I pay nothing to $1000 and sell them for more than double everytime. I figured out that I make about $100/hr.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Got my front matching Yokohamas :beerchug:

(It took me a few days because I won't take my van into a tire shop and risk dents or damage)....so I take them off and take just the rims

I'm sick :help_wsig
 

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That's how I make my living. I go thru at least 100 vans/ yr. I'm buying 3 more this week with bad trans. I pay nothing to $1000 and sell them for more than double everytime. I figured out that I make about $100/hr.
Good God man you're making me tired just thinking about it.

100 / year is like 8.3 vans turned over a month average....about 2 vans per week! You're not doing all this alone are you? Just fetching parts and acquiring the vans could take half your time? How :ask_wsign
 

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Good God man you're making me tired just thinking about it.

100 / year is like 8.3 vans turned over a month average....about 2 vans per week! You're not doing all this alone are you? Just fetching parts and acquiring the vans could take half your time? How :ask_wsign
I just bought 3 more gen 3's in the past couple days. 2 yesterday and 1 today all with bad trans. I paid $1000 for all 3. buy monday I'll have the trannys all done. Oh and I sold a gen3 today that I put a trans in last week. Paid 400 for it, $250 in parts, 5hrs labor (R&R&R) and sold it for $1400. that comes out to over $100/hr I paid myself.
 

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Yesterday me and a friend (who has LOTS of tools) installed my OEM class 3 hitch on my T&C that I had pulled from the 98 AWD GC before I got rid of it. 3 of the 4 bolts that hold the bumper in removed ok with an impact gun and lube but the 4th bolt spun the welded on nut on the back side of the c-channel of the bumper assy. Had to cut the head off the bolt and fish out the other piece with the broken off nut. We were then able to get another nut inside the c-channel and hold it in place taped to a wrench while feeding the mounting bolt for the hitch up and through the unibody and into the bumpers c-channel section. Impact gun tightened it up and took care of the rest as well. If you have ever taken one of these rear bumpers out you will understand what I am talking about.

Before installing the hitch it was a rusty mess. Had it sandblasted and I painted it with 3 coats of POR-15 rust proofer. I will be interested to see how it holds up. It looks awesome for right now.

Sorry not glamorous like swapping a tranny but I'm very happy to have my hitch on the car now.
 

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Got another for the day...and yes miracles do happen.

I have been reading ALL the horror stories about the spare tire winch assy not releasing on these Chrysler vans and the headaches that go with it. I've had this car for about 3+ years now and never even checked it so I was expecting the worst as 4th gen vans much newer than mine are having this problem also. I don't think the winch assy. has ever been lowered either since new from the looks of the original spare tire. So I tried to lower it and it WORKED. Tire came down just fine and I was soooo happy. I looked over the mechanism and studied how it all worked and I now carry a long thin rod with a hook on the end that I could fish through a hole in the spare tire rim should I ever need to pull on that wire piece that doesn't release for many many people. It's actually pretty simple to do and everyone with one of the vans should carry one of the rods with a hook. Even a piece of wire coat hanger would work.

Also the spring piece that pivots back and forth I completely saturated with PB Blaster and worked it until it was buttery smooth with no binding. This piece HAS to be able to move or you're gonna need "the hook" to release the mechanism. I think I'll give it a squirt once a month as it's easy to access through one of the holes in the rim of my full size spare tire with the aid of a flash light.

I urge everyone to check their spare tire winch release BERORE you need it to work in the middle of no where. I was lucky.
 

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Emergency release for the spare tire that has worked for me:

Lower the cable 3-4 inches.
Sit on the ground behind the van and prop yourself up good with your arms.
A few hard kicks with your legs and the tire will release from the locking mechanism then lower the rest of the way down.

Just make sure you don't lower the cable too much or the tire may fall on you.
 
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