Three Chrysler Town & Country Common Problems
The Chrysler Town & Country is one of the best-selling minivans of all time. Uncover three common problems associated with the fourth-generation of this popular people mover. Review symptoms and solutions to these complaints.
Town & Country History
The new model name launched for the first time in 1941. These automobiles were known for their generous amounts of real wood trim and rear mounted barn style wooden doors revealing a large cargo area. As time marched on the automobile took on the form of a station wagon. Many of these automobiles retained the wood trim look with the use of vinyl appliques and aluminum moldings that resembled the wood trim of the past generations.
In 1989 the Town & Country name resurfaced as a high-end minivan. Based on the Dodge Caravan and Plymouth Voyager that launched in 1984 the Town & Country added a luxurious twist on this popular form of transportation. Still retaining its faux wood side panels the model provided ample interior room for people and cargo just as its namesake did in 1941.
Fourth-generation Chrysler Town & Country
This article addresses common auto repair problems found in the fourth-generation minivans built from 2001 through 2007. Completely redesigned in 2001 this generation is distinguished by its more aggressive aerodynamic look and interior innovations like stow and go seating. Chrysler offered two different size V-6 engines during the seven-year run. The 3.3L produced around 180 HP and was ready to burn E85 ethanol-based fuel from 2004 through 2007. They offered a bigger 3.8L V-6 good for 215 HP and 245 pound feet of torque.
Coolant Dripping on Exhaust Manifold
Chrysler Town & Country operators often complain of small amounts of visible steam rising from the engine compartment. This is accompanied with a sweet smelling odor that’s pulled into the passenger compartment when the interior HVAC is operating. The cause of the issue is often traced back to a deteriorating plastic Y pipe connecting three heater hoses together. This device allows coolant to flow through the heater core and return to the engine.
Due to the location, small drips of coolant will land on the exhaust manifold where they evaporate, leaving no traces of the coolant leak. Drivers can verify leaking antifreeze as the source of the problem by checking the radiator coolant recovery tank when the vehicle is cold. Those who find it necessary to add antifreeze should inspect the heater core Y pipe connection for signs of fatigue and wetness. Although an identical replacement plastic pipe is available, many mechanics have opted for a brass replacement to ensure longevity of the repair.
Intermittent Blower Motor Operation
Some Chrysler Town & Country owners have complained about intermittent interior blower motor operation. Although there is more than one problem that can cause the interior fan to malfunction there are some common items to check first. If the blower motor only works on the highest setting it is time to check the resistor module.
It’s located inside the heater case on the passenger side interior of the vehicle behind the glove box. It has two electrical conectors and eight wires going to it. The resistor is responsible for adjusting the blower motor volume output. These devices are known to overheat and fail on this model. In some cases, they can overheat to the point where they damage the harness side connector. Both the resistor and connector are available at your local Chrysler Parts Department.
Interior Fan Completely Inoperative
Another blower motor problem is when the interior fan will not turn on at all. Early fourth-generation Chrysler Town & Country’s have been in service more than a decade. it’s possible that the blower motor electrical brushes are worn out. The motor is located right next to the resistor described above and replacement is straight forward. Sometimes you can perform a tap test on the blower motor case and the fan will begin to operate. The restored operation can last five minutes or five days, but in the long run replacement is recommended to restore reliability.