CarComplaints.com Notes: The second generation Durango was introduced in 2004 and instantly came under fire for, well, catching on fire.

From 2004-2006 electrical overloading in the driver's side instrument panel caused numerous reports of interior fires. The interior infernos became so commonplace that Chrysler eventually issued a recall.

The problems didn't stop there, however. Owners of the recalled vehicles complained about being treated unfairly and given take-it-or-leave-it low ball settlement offers. "They offered me $2000 under NADA retail as a settlement," said one owner, "and have been rude and hostile to deal with." Nothing says awesome service like treating your customers rudely after their cars have caught on fire.

Have we mentioned all the reports of complete engine failure due to oil sludge?

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 7
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
110,256 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2004 Dodge Durango engine problems

engine problem

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2004 Dodge Durango Owner Comments (Page 4 of 15)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #231

Feb 032015

Durango

  • 120,000 miles

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

I was entering interstate 25 North from denver Colorado's 19th street when I heard a bang and my 04 Durango began to shake violently. I believed it was a tire that popped even though I have new ones and so I continued down the ramp to a safe place where I pulled over and stopped. That's when I noticed the vehicle was still shaking and I then believed it to be a serpentine belt until I turned the vehicle off. I opened the hood and found the belt intact. I then looked under the vehicle and could see engine oil dripping off the back of the engine block & onto the ground from some unknown location of the motor. I attempted to pull the dipstick out of the engine but was unable to because it was stuck until I tried cranking the motor once again which allowed me to then pull the dipstick out, but I was never able to get it back in. I had the vehicle towed to my house and then eventually to a dealership after the motor was attempted to be started again. Flame shot out from underneath the hood along with smoke and a lot of white smoke from the tailpipe. The engine is blown it would have to be replaced and I had 12 payments left for about $5000. I was in a negative equity situation with this vehicle now & I didn't have warranties or any ability to get help from Chrysler or Dodge. There have been almost a thousand other people to register complaints for the same problem. The engine hydrolocked because water leaks through the cowling between the windshield and the hood and drains all over the entire engine. It happens at approximately a hundred twenty thousand miles, allowing water to get inside the motor eventually. I took care of this vehicle better than any other vehicle I'd ever owned.

- Westminster , CO, USA

problem #230

Nov 272012

Durango 6-cyl

  • 136,000 miles
The vehicle, which was running fine the evening before this engine failure, was parked outside overnight in the rain. The next morning the vehicle was started and immediately started making loud mechanical noises. The vehicle was turned off immediately and a piece of the engine block was discoverd on the frame and a hole in the engine block was noticed.

- Cottage Grove, OR, USA

problem #229

Dec 112014

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 138,799 miles
After a rainstorm, I went to start my vehicle and it wouldn't turn over. Thinking it was the starter, I replaced the starter and vehicle still would not start. After manually rotating the engine back and forth a few times, the engine started but then had a very loud engine knock. The vehicle was not officially diagnosed by a mechanic but all indications are that it is engine rod failure due to hydrolock condition. This is supported by the idea that the engine would frequently stall during the rain and in the car wash, as many others have reported. It had progressively gotten worse over the course of a year until this happened. Vehicle was sold as-is for repair or engine replacement for fraction of retail value.

- Wichita, KS, USA

problem #228

Feb 062015

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 150,000 miles

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

The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. While starting the vehicle, the contact heard an abnormal rattling sound. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic for diagnostic testing. The mechanic stated that the engine had a hole because the rod blew out of the engine. The engine needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 100,000. Updated 3/31/15 updated 04/14/15

- Eureka , CA, USA

problem #227

Jan 192015

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 141,300 miles
Started car for first time after bad rainstorm over weekend. Heard very loud clanging noise. Hole in oil pan, oil leaked out everywhere. After taking apart the motor, service center discovered a rod shaft had sheared in half and shot through the engine block and oil pan. Discovered it was caused by water getting into engine through spark plugs. Because of this, the warranty company won't cover an engine replacement. We have taken in this vehicle to same service station before over the two years we have owned it because it would stall while driving in bad rainstorm. Could never find a problem. Read a lot of articles online attributing all of this to a design flaw in the hood of this vehicle. I know we are not the only owners of a 2004 Dodge Durango who have experienced this. Something needs to be done to resolve the design flaw and compensate us for having to replace an engine that, apart from being in a poorly designed car, is otherwise in great condition.

- Salem, OR, USA

problem #226

Jan 242015

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
The rain she attempted to start the vehicle a loud unknown noise came from the front of the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where the technician diagnosed the engine needed to be replaced. No repairs were made to the vehicle. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 77,000.[xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Gulf Breeze , FL, USA

problem #225

Jan 112015

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 133,000 miles

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

Went out to start vehicle in the morning and it would not crank over. Tried several times, it was raining at the time. Left vehicle for a few hours, returned later to start and loud clunk coming from motor. Lifted hood and found intake to be totally covered in water. Water was flowing down windshield and directly over top of motor. Upon inspection connecting rod was broken due to hydro locking. Apparently this is a prominent issue with this model. Engine needs to be replaced.

- Mckinney, TX, USA

problem #224

Nov 282013

Durango

  • 111,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that while parked, the hydro extension cylinder became fractured. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 111,000.

- Hendersonville, NC, USA

problem #223

Jan 122015

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 160,069 miles
Daughter was driving vehicle on the highway. Vehicle started shaking and then made loud noise like a hammer hitting engine, then started smoking white smoke coming from the engine. Vehicle quit running. Daughter was able to get to the shoulder. Tried starting again and engine was running very rough, smelled like electrical burn and blowing white smoke. Shut off engine and had vehicle towed. Mechanic stated engine has to be replaced. Having vehicle towed to Dodge dealer for second opinion.

- St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #222

Jan 122015

Durango 8-cyl

  • 99,851 miles
As I was driving down the street in light rain my 2004 Dodge Durango begin to shake and stall. As I came to a stop I recall the SUV smoking. I stop the SUV immediately and could tell the smoke was coming from under the hood. I notified my mechanic and had the truck towed to the shop where he told me the cowl panel was allowing water to leak onto my engine which would cause water to get into my intake that would result into a blown engine. I notified Chrysler/Dodge to no avail they act as if they have never heard of the issue, which is surely incorrect because of all the post of people would common issues with there Dodge Durango. This should definitely be a recall.

- Savannah, GA, USA

problem #221

Jul 062014

Durango

  • 100,000 miles

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

The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that the vehicle failed to start on the first attempt. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was towed to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the engine needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 100,000.

- Kansas City, KS, USA

problem #220

Jan 132015

Durango

  • 155,000 miles
We have kept this Durango in immaculate shape and have consistently done of the recommended upkeep on the vehicle. We change the oil every 3,000 miles. I was driving down the road going approximately 50 miles per hour when without warning the engine just started making a loud noise. It was dangerous because I had nowhere to pull over and had to continue approximately 1 mile before I could get to a shoulder and behind me were multiple vehicles. Underneath the vehicle was oil. The mechanic says that there is a hole in the engine and it is completely blown-catastrophic. Engine failure that will cost $6000 to replace. Although we have used the vehicle for 10 years, we have barely put 12000 miles per year on it. After some research on the internet we found out that there hundreds if not thousands of other similar complaints on this engine, many of them probably unreported to the NHTSA. The '05 and later models do not show anywhere near a similar amount of engine failure complaints. I would have to believe that there have. We are disgusted and would like someone to look into this-a class action lawsuit.

- Union, MO, USA

problem #219

Jan 092015

Durango

  • 130,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. While driving 40 mph, the contact heard a banging noise coming from the vehicle and the engine completely shut off without warning. The vehicle restarted and was towed to an independent mechanic. The technician diagnosed that the engine was faulty. The vehicle was not repaired and the manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 130,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Mount Holly, NJ, USA

problem #218

Jan 042015

Durango

  • 141,000 miles
Tried to start my truck and all I am hearing is loud knocking. No notice of anything being wrong! according to all the research I have done to figure out what the sound is, it is most likely the hydrolock problem that Chrysler is aware of. I am lucky that this did not happen when I was driving, or someone could have gotten seriously hurt or killed. Is that what Chrysler is waiting for before something is done? if we would have known this issue was even possible of happening we may have been able to prevent it by fixing the seal. Now we have a vehicle that looks pretty, but is undrivable, and can't afford to fix it.

- Baltimore , MD, USA

problem #217

Dec 112014

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 87,500 miles
Had just fixed the sensors on the truck, put new battery and new tires. Totaling over $1200. Driving through unavoidable puddles on the highway, during a heavy rain in my area of 4.5 inches. Parked the car in my driveway and went to start it the next morning and heard this very loud grinding. Had the car towed. Diagnosis: Engine hydrolock. Apparently Dodge has known of this problem as I see thousands of complaints on youtube and similar sites. A $130 part could've prevented this from happening but we were never notified of the problem. Not sure what to do at this point. Dodge refusing to help and insurance saying it is a known defect so they won't cover it either.

- Beverly, MA, USA

problem #216

Nov 242014

Durango

  • 132,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 30 mph, the vehicle started shaking and stalled without warning. In addition, the contact smelled a burning odor and saw smoke coming from the front of the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the engine needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 132,000.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #215

Dec 222014

Durango

  • 111,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that when the vehicle was started, there was an abnormal noise coming from the engine area. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic, who diagnosed that the engine needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 111,000.

- Greenville, NC, USA

problem #214

Jun 162014

Durango

  • 94,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that when attempting to start the vehicle, there was a ticking noise coming from the vehicle. In addition, there was another abnormal noise coming from the passenger side of the vehicle. The failure occurred on numerous occasions. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic where the diagnostic testing results were unknown. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 94,000.

- Brooksville, FL, USA

problem #213

Nov 142014

Durango

  • 179,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Dodge Durango. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 35 mph, there was an abnormal noise coming from the vehicle. The failure recurred multiple times. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where the pulley and timing belt were replaced but the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken back to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the piston blew out. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 179,000.

- Atlantic City , NJ, USA

problem #212

Dec 122014

Durango 4WD 8-cyl

  • 197,000 miles
I continue to have engine failure. The vehicle continues to die when making a turn, or low speed. I have done several things to fix this. Changed the battery, oil changes, radiator flush. Please advise on what I need to do to get this fixed. There isn't any codes on the check engine computer.

- Murfreesboro, TN, USA

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