1998 Chrysler Town and Country



August, 16, 2007 AT 12:15 AM

Please help, at a total loss. Have a 1998 Chrysler Town and Country 3.8 liter V6 with 161,000 miles. I have spent a lot of money in diagnostic repair bills.

Problem: After the van has been driven for a while and turned off, sometimes, with no warning, when I turn the key to start the engine nothing happens, the engine won't turn over. All lights (inside and outside) work, the van will not make a sound.

I have had the vehicle towed, several times. As usual, when the mechanics finally get to it, the van starts right up. The pattern seems to be; van will initially start, then unexpectidly, days or weeks later after the van is driven and turned off, the van will not start. Or, if it does start, it will sputter and die.
After a time or two, it will not start back up.

However, after letting the van rest an hour or so, the van will start right up and run again until the problem repeats itself. Could something be loose causing the problem or something more?

Diagnostics have been completed and no codes have been found by the mechanic, because, the van works fine when by the time the mechanic gets it. Anything you can do to help would be greatly appreciated. I do not want my wife and children to be stranded again.


7 Answers



August, 16, 2007 AT 5:51 AM

Go back to the town and country forum and look at the post two down from yours; the post titled " electrical problem?&Quot; You are the fourth (5th?) Person I've encountered to have this problem.

The best solution seems to be whacking the dash, because there is faulty wiring there causing the problem.

Oh, by the way, a bit of info that helped me; the town and country has an anti-theft system that seems to make the key inoperable after several failed start attempts. This is the most likely reason that turning your key produces nothing but a dead instrument panel after several failed start attempts.



September, 15, 2007 AT 8:23 PM

I recently purchased a 97 T& C with 180k miles. After about a month I ran into this starting problem. Hitting the dash didn't work. But, I opened the driver's door and tried to start it, I wanted to see if I could hear any relays clicking. The van STARTED. Today it didn't want to start again, I held the key in the start position and opened the driver's door and it fired right up.

I have to laugh at this.



April, 21, 2009 AT 10:22 AM

My 1998 T & C LXI has same issues. Will start fine usually but will not start sometimes. Today won't start at all. I have hit the dash, opened the doors, disconnected, charged and reconnected battery, jumpstarted, replaced starter & battery previously, had towed in only to have start right up at shop, etc, etc. I won't let my wife drive it anymore. Has become totally unreliable and will need to go unless somebody has any ideas. Sometimes it will start if on a hill and put in neutral and roll and start. Kind of inconvenient. I believe it has to do with alarm or ABS system or possibly the transmission sensor switch. If anyone knows how to disconnect the alarm system or override it advise please.



January, 16, 2010 AT 2:49 PM

I had my van not working after a long road trip of 4K miles. It justsuddenly stopped running while idling. I tried detaching the battery. Nothing. Whacking the dash. Nothing. Then I tried opening the door while turning the key. VAROOOM! Thanks! Apparently it had something to do with the SKIM security shut down.

I love 2CARPROS. Com!

Poochie Jones



May, 19, 2012 AT 2:00 AM

My 2001 will start and then shut down after 3 or 4 seconds. It will do this over and over, as if you were trying to start it without a "chipped" key.

It was really starting to irk me to death, so in frustration one day I pulled the tilt bar toward me and vigorously bounced the tilt wheel up and down. I then turned the key and "whala", started right up.

It seems to be doing it more often than ever before now and that is how I have to start the stupid thing. Some type of electrical failure I am sure.



June, 17, 2012 AT 11:36 PM

Hi everyone I have a 98 T&C lxi I to had the problem of it not starting & having to bang the dash the problem at least for me was the computer for the dasboard needed to be replaced my guy was able to re soder it (until I can by the new one) and for the last 4 months its been working fine



June, 26, 2012 AT 2:32 AM

When this happens, do this. Have a helper turn the key to the start position while you check for voltage at the smaller wire on the starter. You should have 12v. If you do, replace the starter. If not, check the stater relay.

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