1997 Chrysler Concorde



March, 4, 2013 AT 8:47 PM

Let me ask you a question. My grandfather has a 1997 Chrysler concord lx. The car started to hesitate the check engine light came on and the car would hesitate when you hit the gas. The car died on the interstate and would not start. It still will not start. This car has had problems ever since he did a tuneup. He changed the spark plug wires the spark plugs and the distributor and I think the rotor. Ever since then it has been missing bad I kept telling he did the tuneup wrong. My dad told him that the timing was off because he took the timing chain off to replace the water pump. My grandfather agreed. I said no the tune up something is not right. Now Sunday the car dies on the interstate my dad goes I must have gotten water in the gas tank somewhere and my grandfather agrees. So he is going to replace the fuel filter. I pulled a code off 1-2 months ago it was p0302. I was told that that code is not the problem. So I cleared it and now it is back I the computer again. I was told I know nothing and that the problem is the fuel filter or the fuel pump. What do you think. I was also told you have to take the tire off to get to the filter. I said I have done 2 and never had to. I replaced one on a 1998 Z28 Chevy Camaro that is way lower than what his piece of crap was and one one on a 1992 Cadillac Deville that was front wheel drive the 4.9L and I didn't have to take the tire off that either. What do you think the problem is and do you have to take the tire off. I did it with a floor jack and never used stands I was told that you have to I used a jack on a slope and changed both car filters with no problem.


2 Answers



March, 4, 2013 AT 10:38 PM

I think you need to get a mechanic involved if you want to fix this with the least expense. First of all, you know a rattle snake will bite you, therefore, you know your neighbor's dog will bite you. That's as logical as knowing how to replace a fuel filter on a Chrysler because you replaced two on GM products. How can you possibly draw any conclusions based on that? Some fuel filters are inside the gas tank and are not meant to be replaced. What in the world does removing a wheel and tire have to do with getting to a fuel filter? Second, unless it rusts out and starts leaking, or you're working on a diesel truck, you will never solve a running problem on a Chrysler product by replacing the fuel filter. They commonly last the life of the vehicle. Even when they do get plugged, fuel flow does not stop completely. It becomes increasingly restricted, and that could cause stalling when the highest volume of fuel flows from the pump, ... Which is during coasting. I'll explain that if you don't believe me.

Third, you didn't list the engine size. There's three, and none of them use a distributor and rotor. If anyone found a distributor, you have the wrong car listed. Code 302 is for a misfire in cylinder 2. If that started right after the spark plugs and wires were replaced, start by making sure the wires are on the right spark plugs and the plugs are gapped correctly. A misfire will definitely cause a hesitation on acceleration, but it will also be felt at idle. That by itself will not cause stalling and a failure to start, so it appears there are two different problems. The cylinder numbering is 2, 4, 6 front to back on the driver's side and 1, 3, 5 front to back on the passenger side. The corresponding numbers are molded on the coil pack.

If anything was done with the camshaft position sensor or the crankshaft position sensor, and used ones were reinstalled, was a special paper spacer used on the end to set the critical air gap? If not, that can cause intermittent stalling and a failure to restart. You would find a clue to that by measuring the voltage coming from the automatic shutdown (ASD) relay. Look for the dark green / orange wire in the coil pack connector or in any injector connector. You will see 12 volts on that wire for one second after turning on the ignition switch. What is important is whether that voltage comes back while cranking the engine. If it does not, suspect those two sensors.

You haven't specified if you have spark or fuel pressure. Those are the two basics to check first. You're going to replace the fuel filter to remove water from the tank? You aren't even sure there is water in the gas. If there is, replacing the filter won't do anything. They trap dirt, not water. You weren't clear on the time line of when all these events occurred. If a batch of bad gas is to blame for engine stalling, that would have occurred within a few minutes of buying that gas. If the engine ran fine for a few hours or days, the gas is not the problem. I did have two cars come in within two days after buying gas from the same place. To identify those, we threw samples on the shop floor and threw lit matches on them. That stuff put the matches out.

You got a misfire code two months ago and it's back again? How can it set if the engine doesn't run? The code is the message about the problem that the Engine Computer detected. Clearing the code doesn't make the problem go away, although you do want to clear it once the problem is identified and solved.

Before you introduce any more variables and potential problems, first determine if you're missing spark, fuel pressure, or both. Fuel pressure can be misleading because the pump will run for one second after turning on the ignition switch. That pressure does not mean the pump is running during engine cranking, although it does mean the pump is not the problem. It's helpful to know that fuel pumps fail in different ways. GM fuel pumps almost always quit while you're driving and they let you sit on the side of the road. Chrysler pumps almost always fail to start up but once they do, they rarely quit while you're driving. They let you sitting in the driveway.

The 3.3L uses a timing chain. The water pump is right in the front of the engine and you don't get close to removing the chain to replace the water pump. On the 3.5L the water pump is driven by the timing belt. No water pumps are driven by a timing chain.

I'm not sure what the reference to the jack stands is about. No professional would ever consider crawling under a car supported only by a floor jack. In my Auto shop my students got one warning about a failure to use jack stands. At the second offense, which only happened once, they knew I was coming to let the car down on top of them. It's really that big a deal. If someone bumps the release handle, a seal in the jack gives out, you unbalance the jack by wiggling on the car, or the car just slides off, the non-running engine will be the last thing on your mind, ... If you live to think about in the hospital. You may not have learned a lot about cars yet, but at least learn from other people's mistakes and use jack stands. We all started out having to learn from the experts but you have to be around to do that.



March, 5, 2013 AT 1:31 AM

Thank you everything you said is my case proven. On the GM cars the filters just quit and I had to get towed. One on the highway and the other going to walmart. I had to get both of them towed. I don't really like jack stands unless I am doing an exhaust. I know I should use them but I don't. I have done that for a few years. The code set while driving. It was still running but the motor would miss. I cleared the code out to see if it would come back and it did. I did not erase it yet. I am not going to either. The car will not start at all. So he is replacing the fuel filter and then if that does not work he will do the fuel pump. I told him go ahead and waste all your money for all I care. I was told I was stupid and that the code that set was not the cause. I am like you I would recheck the tune up from wires to rotor to distributor and also the spark plugs. I don't know what size motor at this time. I am not changing anything it is his car he can do what he wants. I am out of this one. If I was doing this I would have tested the fuel pressure first then I would have checked if I had spark. Thanks for agreeing with me except for the jack stands. Which I should use. Thank you.

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