1996 Dodge Stratus CrankShaft Pulley Damage

Tiny
MTGIRL61
  • MEMBER
  • 1996 DODGE STRATUS
  • 131,000 MILES
I put my 96 stratus in the shop for routine maintenance and tie rod ends, I was specific about what the problem was, (I had trouble shot it) and knew what I wanted done, front end sticking in turns, power steering belt loose? (Drive belts)needed replacement (loose from age), check to see if noise in front end was a bearing noise, they took it on themselves to? Inspect my car? Looked at timing, brakes, sensors, etc tried to sell me a new timing belt, pulleys etc but the belt I had only had 30000 miles on it, the engine was mechanically sound. Drive belts (yes) tie rods, yes, alignment, yes once they gave me the 2600.00 estimate of recommendations I explained it hadn't been that long on timing, that the car ran fine, that the 160 dollar brake shoes and the 200 dollar rotors where still warranted, passed on most of the up sell. OK'd 2 belts, tie rod ends, alignment and decided to have them change the plugs while they had it.
Got the car back, front end squeaked on drivers side, belts chirping, they lost a belt cover?HOW? No idea, my car started throwing crazy codes, the speedometer was fluxing, settles in and the odometer and the tachometer were fluctuating the car would surge when the tach would kick off and on last but not least the belt running off the crankshaft was wrapped around the pulley it went from a chirp to a squeal, I had brought all this to their attention ( except the belt off pulley as I hadn't seen it until that date ) they just blew me off, ordered the wrong replacement part, told me I didn't need the one they lost, finally I was able to get a hold of the service managers voice mail, and he wouldn't call me back he had the service adviser (who'd been dodging my calls ) call me, they said they would come and get it with a truck, they had it 1 hr and called telling me my crankshaft pulley shaft and bolt was stripped, that it looked like some one took a hammer to it? That it was whomever changed my timing belts fault( 8 yrs earlier ) that I needed to call them, and figure how they am going to pay for this repair. My question can a belt being misaligned, or wrapped around the edge of a pulley cause that type of damage to the bolt in a crankshaft? It was way too tight I couldn't get a pc of paper between it or the belt when I took pics of it, or do they loosen this bolt to put on the belt or when they inspected my timing? Prior to this car used 1 tank of gas a month after I got it back it ate 3 tanks in less than 6 weeks, I have read all I can, I have a brain injury and I'm lost, all I have heard is WERE NOT LIABLE. I asked them to check that pulley to make sure it wasn't damaged after the fiasco with the belt I figured, a straight edge, a laser, a ruler, spin the pulleys, did not ever authorize them to pull it off and do not believe I have been driving with a stripped crankshaft and bolt for 8 yrs? I have a brain injury so I wrote it all down as it happened, now they want me to pay them 1350.00 ( a reduced rate to 75. Hr And a crankshaft + Core ) + what ever else it takes to replace the cranks shaft? Can you see any thing that may have caused this? I read if belts too tight it can spin pulleys backwards, would that cause this? Thank you and I'm sorry its so long I tried to donate 5.00 but the page wasnt incripted email me a mailing address and I will. Send a few dollars thank you.
Do you
have the same problem?
Yes
No
Monday, November 18th, 2013 AT 7:55 AM

10 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Based on their first estimate, I would have not allowed them to do the work. Now, they are asking for more. At this point, I would get a second opinion. To be honest, yes is it possible for belts to get misaligned. However, I never heard of one damaging a bolt in the pulley. Is it possible for you to get it to a different shop?
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, November 18th, 2013 AT 8:28 AM
Tiny
MTGIRL61
  • MEMBER
I was trying to figure how to donate ( brain injury sorry) I am having it towed to the mechanic that did the work 8 yrs ago, he had left the dealership, but I found him :-) I appreciate your time. Sincerely Judy
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, November 18th, 2013 AT 8:49 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Judy:
Let me know how things go for you or if you have other questions.

Joe
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, November 18th, 2013 AT 8:53 AM
Tiny
MTGIRL61
  • MEMBER
Hi Joe. Thank You again for your answer to my questions, I was at a loss this lil car has been like one of the kids Ive had her 16 yrs and shes never let me down. So I did what you suggested. I actually hunted down the Mechanic that did the major work on the timing 8 yrs ago.I know long time but shes still ran like a youngster, its only got like 40000 on the belt they put in, the only reason I had them tune her up was convenience and not a clue as to the harm they could do, any way. I did take it to her original mechanic and he showed me the bolt the way it was shredded it wouldn't have ever stayed in the crank for 8 years it wouldn't even go in. The whole piece that held it in(top 2 inches) was sheered off and was shaped like a flat bullet top. He Said it looked like they took a impact wrench to it? He had already ordered the new one and showed it to me. Holy Cow, he also said that the crank didn't look damaged or as damaged as they said it was and that IF need be he could re thread it. I am appalled that a well known dealership would pull this or have employees that would.I live in Montana, one thing that I have always carried with me and been so proud of was how good, honest and hardworking a people we were, my Grandparents were pioneers here and helped settle this state and they worked hard and we were raised to do the same, any way nostalgia :-) Thanks Again for your help
Sincerely Judy
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Friday, November 22nd, 2013 AT 1:43 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Judy:

I'm glad you found someone you trust. I can't believe what you said, but it doesn't surprise me. So, you live in Montana. I have never been there but have heard that it is a beautiful state. I'm stuck in PA. Lol You know, I was raised a lot like you. My parents moved here from Italy and they both worked their butts off all the time. I would like to say I'm the same, but I don't think I could have kept up with them. Lol Things are sure changing, though. It's hard to find workers that are even willing to come to work on time or at all. My buddy and I have a shop and we are lucky. All our workers have been there for years. However, when it comes time to get someone new, one never knows if they will show up after being hired.

If nothing else, you can always come to this site. We have no reason not to be honest and we enjoy helping nice people like you. So, if you ever have questions in the future, let us know.

Nice talking with you and take care,

Joe
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Friday, November 22nd, 2013 AT 5:34 PM
Tiny
MTGIRL61
  • MEMBER
Joe I have a question, now that all is said and done I am in a conversation with the GM at the dealership, Very nice guy, not mechanically inclined ( I find that cute ) if I was going to manage a dealership I would want to be a little mechanical but any way so I think I have solved the puzzle of the damaged crankshaft but I need to see what a pro thinks before I talk to him about it. As well as I want to talk to the fella that's trying to help me straighten out the car. So here is s the question if that bolt was not tightened up after they looked at the timing and the water pump (both under the timing cover) could all the surges, computer having a fit, gauges acting crazy, cruise control surging, car running like dookey, rough , used 2 - 3 times the gas, I drove it some, allot actually and at up to the 45 mph allowed in town, would it damage the head of the bolt and cause these types of symptoms? They said the crankshaft was loose and the bolt was stripped, I took pics it wasn't an obvious thing if that's what it was but it would explain everything. Any Idea if that's what would happen? The only reading I saw re loose bolt in CS said it shot out the side of the motor at highway speeds.I wouls so appreciate any thoughts on this. Hope you all had a Great Thanksgiving and every ones staying warm in PA. Were freezing :-) My GGGrandpa was from PA, I drove through the state once its like Montana. Long and lots of cool stuff to see. I look forward to your thoughts and thank you again :-) Judy
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Wednesday, December 4th, 2013 AT 6:26 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:

Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving. As far as the problem, I don't see how it caused all of the problems you mentioned. However, it could have caused a drivability problem.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, December 5th, 2013 AT 6:33 AM
Tiny
MTGIRL61
  • MEMBER
Thank You, its nice to have an opinion from folks who have nothing to gain or lose on the Matter, I just don't understand what the heck happened, I try to ask the right questions and sort out all the information but im not a Mechanic Thanks Again and Happy Holidays. If you can post a place to mail the donations I will gladly send one

Sincerely,

Judy
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, December 5th, 2013 AT 10:28 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Judy, I hope I helped and haven't confused you more. Let me know if you have other questions. As far as a donation, that is done on the homepage. However, it's Christmas time. Don't worry about it if money is tight. I'm just glad to be here to help.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, December 5th, 2013 AT 4:20 PM
Tiny
MTGIRL61
  • MEMBER
Lol don't think any one can confuse me any more than I confuse myself :-) well its just so weird, I talked with the fella who is doing the repairs he said its more than likely a ground strap causing havoc with my gauges, they work but they only work now and again. But since the bolt back in the crank it seems like they are on most of the time. Maybe all the time, im not sure I have to make it a point to notice. ( Side effect having a head injury). Its just strange it acts like a house vacuum cleaner when it isn't plugged in tightly.

The reason I asked about the crank is they are ( bad shop ) trying to tell me crank was loose and bolt stripped before they touched it? I know it wasnt, I took pics of it before I let it go back for the repair just because they were acting so? Then my crankshaft was dismantled its my understanding is that if it were loose car wouldn't drive, it drove fine, but the goofy electrical and then the belt was off the 1/2 pulley and bound around it but the dang thing just kept running like a good car does :-)

i talked with the GM at the dealership, very nice guy, wants to fix this ive been a customer there since 1996, and hes a nice enough guy but hes not mechanical so its hard to explain it to him, and the tech that did this no longer works there. Hmmm
I really do appreciate EVERY thing and im gonna go do the home page thingy, I now have extra security on my computer so I can make it with out worry :-) I appreciate this forum and hope its always gonna be here to help all of us. Merry Christmas Every one :-) This is my fav gift this year !
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, December 5th, 2013 AT 6:12 PM

Please login or register to post a reply.

Recommended Guides