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8.6

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$310.00
Average Mileage:
96,336 miles
Total Complaints:
10 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (9 reports)
  2. replace old caliper with new phenalic piston inside caliper (1 reports)
2000 Dodge Dakota brakes problems

brakes problem

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2000 Dodge Dakota Owner Comments

problem #10

Aug 142012

Dakota Sport 3.9L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,562 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I CAN'T GO ANYWHERE, IF I HAVE TO USE THE BRAKES AT ALL, AND I NEVER WANT TO GET IN A BACKUP ON ANY HIGHWAY, FOR ROAD CONST OR AN ACCIDENT, BECAUSE THE BRAKES LOCK UP AND I AM DRIVING DOWN THE SIDE OF THE ROAD WITH SMOKE ROLLING FROM THE BRAKE SHOES AND HAVE TO PULL OVER AND WAIT ABOUT 2 HRS BEFORE I CAN ATTEMPT TO DRIVE HOME. WHAT I HAE BEEN TOLD AND WHAT I SEEN ON HERE IS TO REPLACE THE CALIPHERS AND GO TO CERAMICS, I THINK ITS THE AMOUNT OF PAD MATERIAL THEY PUT ON THE SHOES, I REPLACED THE SHOES TWICE, FIRST TIME HAD NO PROBLEM, THIS TIME THE SHOES WERE AWFUL TIGHT ON THE ROTORS AND THE PISTON WAS COMPLETELY BACK. JUST A THOUGHT. WE WILL SEE, MY DAD IS AN ASME CERTIFIED MECH WHO HAS WORKED FOR CHEVY DEALERS. WE ARE GOING TO SHAE THE PADS AND SEE IF THAT HELPS, WISH US LUCK.

- , Greencastle, PA, USA

problem #9

Jan 072013

Dakota 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 156,000 miles

Now I understand why people say what they do about Chrysler Products. The right front caliper stuck and ruined the entire rotor. This has never happened to me with any of the other 20 or so cars/trucks that I have owned. I thought that I had solved the problem of really small rotors by opting to pay more for drilled and slotted rotors. They worked fine for 15000 miles. Now this. Chrysler needs to step up to the plate and confess what an awful job they have done in covering this gross error!

- , Bothell, Washington, USA

problem #8

Dec 022011

Dakota Sport 3.9L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles

FACTORY PAD CAME APART - RT. OUTER ONLY, OTHERS OK, REPLACED PADS AND WHEN BRAKES GET SOME HEAT IN THEM, THEY BEGIN TO DRAG AND GET PROGRESSIVELY WORSE AS THEY GET HOT

- , Metairie, LA, USA

problem #7

Oct 272011

Dakota Sport V6

  • Manual transmission
  • 105,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Driving down the freeway about 20mph in traffic, brake smell inside vehicle, truck then started to pull to the right when driving straight, and then pulled to left while braking. Felt like a flat tire. Pulled over, passenger brake was smoking/hot. Once it cooled off it released. I drove to a tire shop and removed tire, sprayed with lube all over the rotor and pad and caliper, had no knowledge yet of this major problem which is now being investigated. I have not fixed the problem myself yet, but it seems from reading this thread that everyone has this problem over and over and some folks have changed everything and still have it happen (changed rotors, pads, brake lines, master cylinder, to the point that there is nothing left to change. The only thing left is the ABS stuff. My advise in the meanwhile is to completely remove/bypass the ABS unit if possible. Its got to be that part of the system. I bet the durangos have the same problem (they seem to share a ton of parts, hoods, doors, interiors, etc, so they should be having the same problem). It sounds like there will be a recall once the investigation goes that far. It seems like its just begun this year thanks to a poster in this forum. Good job. Your comments about your ABS experiences make me believe it must be the culprit.

Update from Aug 18, 2012: Replaced the caliper and it works great now, I tried disconnecting the ABS and it disconnected the speedometer too - and as a result the engine stalls when coming off the freeway due to the ABS also disconnecting the Speed Sensor which helps control idle. But ABS wasnt the problem anyway...

And finally, I made a mistake above on the side of the caliper that was sticking, it was the left/driver side. The bottom line is it is simply the phenalic (plastic) pistons inside the calipers that cause them to stick. If you research other vehicles with the same p[roblem, they are all phenalic pistons!! The chevy trucks from the mid 2000's also stick. The new Dakotas come with metal piston replacements, but the old Dakotas do not, they only offer phenalic caliper rebuilds. You could also go aftermarket and buy a $250 caliper with a steel piston and be done with the problem as well. Phenalic (plastic) pistons expand and contract at different rates and start to stick once they get hot after 40-50k miles get on them. Make sure when you get a new (rebuilt) caliper, that the brand your buying includes a NEW phenalic piston inside the rebuilt caliper. Doing this should get you another 50k miles, before they start sticking and require replacement again. The GOOD news is that a caliper is really cheap (less than $50 bucks) and it solves the problem. Also, change the brake hose connected to the caliper ($10 bucks) and you did it right.

- , Capistrano Beach, CA, USA

problem #6

Jun 032011

Dakota 3.9L V6

  • Manual transmission
  • 160,000 miles

dodge dakota drivers brake sticks, thought truck would burn up. and i can see im not the only one with this problem. dodge needs to recall these trucks to fix the problem.

- , Spindale, NC, USA

problem #5

Sep 252011

Dakota 3.9L 6 cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 61,798 miles

front pads were wearing low and right rotor warped skidding over a manhole cover in the rain- ok- new pad/rotors 130$ plus labor/shop fees not to bad- drove away and 10 kilometers down the road stopped at a light- right tires smoken -sigh- back to shop- new pads/rotor caliper right side 400+$ later- ouch- well away i go light pocketed- same light again wouldn't you know smoken like heck- came home anyway- cant afford more repairs now what ......

- , Victoria, BC, Canada

problem #4

Aug 072011

Dakota SLT Quad Cab 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Here we go again. While driving on highway headed home, smelled acrid smoke somewhat like electronics burning. Let up windows and switched on AC thinking it was a fire somewhere along road. Got home and found the (near) fire -- it was in the front passenger side/right wheel well. Smoke pouring out. Dodge brakes -- the gift that keeps on giving!

The rotor was very hot but I stopped before it got so hot as to crack it like what happened with same problem a few years earlier. Let the truck sit a few days and then went to work. Took wheel off, brake cylinder was no longer seized up. Pushed cyl back in to remove the calipers. Slide pins were dragging a bit and one looked corroded. Replaced pins on both right and left front calipers and lubed them up well and bled/replaced fluid in both front and back lines/cylinders with Prestone synthetic stuff. Thought maybe I'd solved it. But no! Today the left front cylinder got jealous and decided to lock up and generate a ton of heat for itself. Slide pins were not the problem. Still haven't solved this.

I've searched and read about the following theories of why this happens:

1) Phenolic cylinder pistons absorb moisture, swell, and resist releasing/retreating back into the cylinder. Don't know how this reconciles with cylinder seeming to free up right after lock up?

2) Crappy and cheap guide design where pads can't slide freely at the top and bottom slide tabs and therefore hang/jam up.

3) Other wild theories ...

I'm beginning to suspect #2. Just read this from a user on Edmonds:

"My 2001 has locked up 5 times in 120000 miles every time had dealers or some other shop do the repair usually new pads rotors sometimes hoses etc. It got so hot one time even had to replace wheel bearings. Any ways it would do it again after "repair" sometimes right away sometimes 30,000 miles.. Last time it happened I ripped it apart my self ordered new pads and rotors while in the process of installing them I noticed the area of backing plate that sticks out where brake pads rest in order to slide in and out, was all rough and gnarled. I ground and filed them smooth so pads could move in and out smoothly with wear and have not had a problem since.. "

And this from another on Edmonds Dokota forum:

"For example, when replacing disk brake pads, if the sliding surfaces are not filed smooth and lubricated with approprate hi-temp lube, you may encounter pads which do not retract properly. Another example would be to ensure that the sliding pins are lubricated with rubber-lube so the "fully floating" calipers truly do float as expected. "

I think it's Dodge's cheap and sloppy design that doesn't allow smooth sliding due to wear and rust on the 18th century style slide tab areas. The slide pins should have been redesigned to keep them sealed from the weather too.

I'm going to try what the guys posting on Edmonds did -- file it all slide areas smooth and lubricate.

This should have prompted a recall on this series of Dakotas and Durangos.

- , Christmas, FL, USA

problem #3

Jun 142010

Dakota SLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 176,000 miles

Just because I am a girl, with no auto knowledge, doesn't mean I cant see smoke or smell burning and even as a girl I can tell my truck is f*cked up! A year ago this same thing happened and a handful of men at the auto shop laughed and said there was nothing wrong.... said it must have been brake dust... my ass. Today the same thing happened, with one step further My Brakes Stopped Working. Foot on the brake to the floor, no stopping, Emergency brake is not on but the dash says it is. Don't matter it didnt work anyways. Yes i have alot of miles, but my Dakota has never had trouble going... Just stopping. So in a nut shell. Front Right Wheel area pours smoke, smells like melting rubber, makes my truck jerk going up hill, and as of today No Brakes... Emergency brake light is on but the brake is popped.

- , Troutman, NC, USA

problem #2

Jun 242009

Dakota V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Intermittent pad sticking/smoking - cools off and OK for some time. Replaced pads and rotors and cleaned up the guides that the pads are supposed to slide on. Noticed a fair amount of wear and pitting where the old pads had been sitting. Was shocked to see that there is no way - short of replacing the entire spindle - to replace the guides - a really cheap design... Just had another incident with the new pads and rotors. The GM brake calipers that I have worked on all slide on nice, smooth guide pins that CAN BE REPLACED!!!

- , Wellsville, NY, Pacific Islands (US)

problem #1

Apr 142006

Dakota EXT V/6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,000 miles

Front brakes not releasing completely. Shop stated ceramic brakes did not work as well as metal. Had to replace rotors, pads, and all brake components on front because of heat build up.. Mfg saved money in production and customer gets stuck again

- , Moultrie, GA, USA

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