hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
46,822 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.

1998 Dodge Grand Caravan engine problems

engine problem

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1998 Dodge Grand Caravan Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #49

Aug 152011

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,500 miles


The contact owns a 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan. While driving approximately 35 mph the steering wheel became extremely difficult to maneuver. The vehicle was towed to the contacts home. The vehicle was inspected by an independent mechanic who stated the serpentine belt detached from the vehicle. The serpentine belt was replaced. The failure occurred intermittently four times. The mechanic installed a tensioner to hold the serpentine belt in place. The failure continued to occur. The vehicle was repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 90,500. The consumer stated the belt tensioner and idler pulley was replaced on 03/04/12 updated 03/30/12

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #48

Nov 092010

Grand Caravan

  • 108,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan. While driving approximately 45 mph in rainy weather, the steering became difficult to maneuver and the brakes would not respond when depressed. The vehicle began to overheat and was driven to an independent mechanic for inspection. The mechanic advised that the serpentine belt detached from the vehicle. The mechanic replaced the serpentine belt and the tensioner. The failure recurred one month later and the contact was able to place the belt back in place. The failure recurred five times and only when driving in rainy weather. The vehicle was not further repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 108,000.

- Oswego, IL, USA

problem #47

Mar 221981

Grand Caravan

  • 120,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan. The contact has experienced two failures regarding the serpentine belt. While driving 30 mph, the power steering and power brakes lost power. There were no warnings prior to the failures. The vehicle was towed to the contact's residence and he repaired the vehicle himself by re-attaching the serpentine belt. The contact is currently unable to take the vehicle to the dealer for inspection. The manufacturer stated that no compensation would be provided because there were no recalls. The failure mileage was 120,000 and current mileage was 123,000.

- Springfield, MO, USA

problem #46

Feb 222008

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 156,000 miles


The contact owns a 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan. The contact stated that the serpentine belt continuously detaches in wet weather conditions. The belt detaches while driving at various speeds and causes the vehicle to shut off. The vehicle has not been taken to a dealer for repair. The powertrain was unknown. The current mileage was 158,000 and failure mileage was 156,000.

- Detroit, MI, USA

problem #45

Feb 142008

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles
Serpentine belt flies off with a minimal amount of moisture. Both wife and I have driven our 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan in wet weather and the serpentine belt has come off numerous times. The vehicle doesn't even need to hit a puddle, the slightest amount of water splashing from another car will cause it to come off. Belt falling off causes power steering, cooling, and charging to fail resulting in serious safety hazard as car is impossible to control.

- Naperville, IL, USA

problem #44

Sep 142007

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,680 miles
While driving in heavy rain my serpentine belt came off the pulleys and resulted in a dangerous situation when I lost my steering while driving in traffic. I understand that this is a common and dangerous problem on the earlier (1997 through the early 2000S models) Dodge Caravan 3.0, 3.3, and 3.8 engines. There are many postings on the internet with people having the same thing happening during rain storms. I am the original owner of this 1998 Dodge Caravan. The van only has 61,686 miles on it. At 43,000 miles I had to replace the belt, tensioner, and pulley idler. I also have heard that Dodge did a recall on this problem in at least one other country. Chrysler should be mandated to offer a fix for this here in the usa. I temporarily fixed my problem by putting the old serpentine belt back on the pulleys. This is not an easy task and trying to do it along the road is hazardous. But for most people this would be impossible to do.

- Franklin, NC, USA

problem #43

Jun 172007

Grand Caravan

  • miles


Serpentine belt came off four times while driving in the rain. After the fourth time the garage ordered a conversion kit from the gates corporation that replaced the idler plus the tensioner. The kit also included a new double sided ribbed belt. Their part number is 38,342 K. it can also be ordered through car quest auto parts stores. Their part number is the same. I have not had a problem since.

- Sheridan, Indiana, IN, USA

problem #42

Mar 162007

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles
- the contact owns a 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan. The contact stated that the serpentine belt slipped off in wet weather, and it made steering extremely difficult. When this happened there was no longer power steering. This has happened at least 4 times. The failure mileage was 70,000, and the current mileage was 107,000. Consumer states dealer made additional installation of the belt 6 months prior to the incident. Update/23/07 *

- Hainesport, NJ, USA

problem #41

Sep 282006

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 151,300 miles
: the contact stated while driving 25 mph, the power steering failed, followed by loss of vehicle power, illumination of all warning lights, and the rising of the engine temperature. The vehicle was taken to a private repair shop, who determined that the serpentine belt became detached due to water splashing up into the undercarriage. The mechanic replaced the belt, however the problem persisted. The service dealer mentioned that a splash shield kit was no longer available for the vehicle. Updated 10/30/06.

- Harrisburg, PA, USA

problem #40

Dec 162005

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,002 miles
During a hard rain shower, the serpentine belt which drives the alternator, A/C, power steering and water pump jumped off of the pulleys resulting in the loss of the power steering and the engine overheating. Had vehicle towed to a repair shop for repairs. Repair shop could not find any reason for the belt to jump off. Belt was examined and found to be in good condition. This first occurrence occurred on 12/16/2005. The second occurrence occurred on 7/28/2006 under the same wet weather conditions. The vehicle was taken to the same repair shop and checked out by the owner of the business. The belt was examined again and found not to have any sign of damage. The owner of the business replaced the belt with a new one as he could find no reason for the belt to jump off. Steering of the vehicle was next to impossible due to the loss of the power steering. I checked with the service manager at the local Chrysler dealership and he said he had not had any service bulletins from Chrysler on this problem.

- Asheboro, NC, USA

problem #39

Feb 122006

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles


This is for a 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan 3.0 we had to replace the serpentine belt tensioner twice in two years. In doing some research, it seems that others have had problems with the serpentine belt tensioner so we wanted to add that it has happened twice to ours.

- St. Simons Island, GA, USA

problem #38

Mar 112006

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles
Serpentine belt keeps coming off.

- Attica, MI, USA

problem #37

Jun 012005

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,900 miles
While driving through puddles the serpentine belt which controls the steering and other accessories slips off. I have owned this vehicle since new and never had this problem before. Went to dealer he installed tsb bulletin 07-02-99 that consists of a bracket to stop the belt from coming off, but after I drove 7 miles in the rain it came off again. While at the dealer there were several other Caravan towed there with the same problem, even a 2005. The dealer rep says this is a common problem because the water is splashed onto the belt tensioner and idler pulleys which are not grooved and just slips off. I did a web search at allpar.com, edmunds.com, etc. And found numerous complaints. This is a serious condition, people can be seriously injured or killed when they lose power steering control unexpectedly. I can't believe Chrysler Corp. Has allowed this condition to go unresolved for so long.

- Mt. Sinai, NY, USA

problem #36

Nov 082000

Grand Caravan

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
The serpentine belt falls off when it gets wet. Dealer has replaced it twice, and a shield once, however the problem still exists.

- Roselle, IL, USA

problem #35

Jul 012004

Grand Caravan

  • 35,500 miles
While driving serpentine belt disengaged, causing power steering to fail, and water pump to overheat. This happened five times. A technical service bulletin was issued on this problem.

- Toronto, 00, USA

problem #34

Nov 182004

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,596 miles
The drive belt has repeatedly come off resulting in the immediate loss of power steering while the vehicle is in motion. I took the car to the dealership each time, but they were unable to determine the problem. Finally a different dealership identified the problem as a flexing engine mounting bracket. This problem is so common there is a Chrysler service bulletin #07-02-99. This repair should be covered as a safety recall.

- Florence, SC, USA

problem #33

Apr 142004

Grand Caravan

  • miles
While driving 10 mph pulley belt fell off. Steering wheel was hard to steer and turn. Consumer drove vehicle to dealer for inspection, and mechanic told consumer that problem could not be duplicated or resolved.

- Beverly, NJ, USA

problem #32

Jan 112004

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • 64,000 miles
While driving cruise control light began to illuminate along with the air bag light. Consumer took vehicle to the dealership, and they informed consumer that clock spring cracked. The tensioner seized.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #31

Feb 042004

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,900 miles
After driving through standing water, the serpentine belt slipped off, causing a loss of power steering control. The same thing had happened in June 2003, about three weeks after the dealer had replaced the belt and tensioner. The tendency for the belt to slip off after driving through water is a serious safety problem, which could easily lead to a loss of control of the car by a less experienced driver.

- Westfield, NJ, USA

problem #30

Jan 092004

Grand Caravan 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles
My 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan (which I purchased new) had "thrown" its' serpentine-belt 4 times (approximately every 10,000 miles- it now has approximately 50,000 miles on the odometer). The danger/hazard in this circumstance is that power-steering, water-pump, alternator, & possibly oil-pump are driven by this belt! Dodge has replaced the belt, tensioner, tensioner-mount bracket successively: I.e.- belt at 1st incident, tensioner at 2nd, bracket at 3rd. Now it has occurred again & they wish to charge for all the aforementioned. The vehicle had camshaft failure at 41,000 miles & now has a rebuilt engine- the belt/ tensioner/ bracket are said by Dodge not to be affected by the replaced engine. So, does this mean the vehicle needs a new tensioner/ belt/ bracket every 10,000 miles?

- Tampa, FL, USA

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