1996 Dodge Caravan loss of power, dies at idle

Tiny
ADC57
  • MEMBER
  • 1996 DODGE CARAVAN
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 310,000 MILES
My wife has a 96 caravan, the vehicle has a very uneven idle, while letting the vehicle pull at its own power(not pushing accelerater) like going thru a drive thru, 9 times out of 10 it dies. It starts back up no problem. Recently when she turns on the air, heater, fan, and even the rear defroster the engine makes a high pitched squeeling noise, giving it some gas seems to make it stop. While driving uphill sometimes it starts jerking like the engine is cutting out, pushing harder and letting it drop to a lower gear fixes that to. I know that the smog pump is bad and can hear that rattle, but I dont know if that could cause all the other problems as well. It has 310,000 miles on the odometer, but had the engine rebuilt about 30,000 miles ago. Any help you could give would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Tuesday, October 13th, 2009 AT 5:54 PM

5 Replies

Tiny
CH112063
  • MEMBER
There are many possible causes, the throttle position is constantly looked at by the computer(PCM). If something goes wrong a fault code may be stored and later retrieved with an electronic scanner. Idle speed and fuel control are all done with motors and sensors. Both a faulty idle speed motor or a throttle position sensor could cause this. Bring it back to the place that the engine was overhauled at. Before it causes another problem. OK Joe
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Tuesday, October 13th, 2009 AT 9:31 PM
Tiny
ADC57
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Man I wish I could take it back, but I bought the vehicle used after the rebuild. But Ill definetly try the tps sensor. Where is the Idle Control motor located on the vehicle.I appreciate your help buddy.
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Wednesday, October 14th, 2009 AT 8:35 AM
Tiny
CH112063
  • MEMBER
The engine recieves air through a fresh air system known as the air intake system.
Different cars use either a single air cleaner and plastic hose, bringing fresh air to the throttle body or some have different arrangements either factory or aftermarket made. The air filter sits in this just before the air enters the Throttle body, assuring fresh and filtered air is drawn in. All your cables that controls the idle speed are attached to the throttle body. It looks just like a smaller carburetor. The throttle position sensor is mounted on one side of the throttle body. The idle speed motor(IAC) or air idle control is also mounted on it. Just below the throttle blade. It moves in or out to give the engine a sort of a controlled vacuum leak, and the manifold absolute pressure sensor, senses the drop in vacuum, telling the computer to give the injector more gas. So both the TPS and the AIC are usually right on the throttle body, which houses the thrrottle blade. Just follow the accelerator cable and you will see it mounted right on the throttle body, near the TPS. It has 3 wires at least.
Clean it and clean the hole it came out of with carb. Cleaner and a small nylon brush.
I think that you may be hearing that loud screech coming from the alternator belt as you give it a load turning on accessories. Glad to help.
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Thursday, October 15th, 2009 AT 12:28 AM
Tiny
ADC57
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Ill definetly check that out, and let you know how it went. Thanks again.
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Thursday, October 15th, 2009 AT 7:44 AM
Tiny
CH112063
  • MEMBER
Ok you have good luck. Disconnect neg. Battery cable and don't squirt carb cleaner in your eyes. I did, about 11 times, not as bad as high octane(pink) fuel. See ya
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Thursday, October 15th, 2009 AT 1:44 PM

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