really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
150,000 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. clean & resplice wires from the wiring harness (1 reports)
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problem #1

Jul 012011

Caravan 3.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

SERVICE ALERT FOR MOPAR TRANSMISSIONS BETWEEN 1990 AND 1999: It has been determined that in over 91% of the transmission problem cases reported (limp mode) that the problem is due, not to mechanical problems within the transmission, but is due instead to a faulty inline wiring harness splice from the factory. The wire from the TCM, the second wire from the solenoid pack and the third wire from the ECU was wired together at the factory when it was determined that there was a communications error to the ECU which is a factory/design flaw.

So on the production floor, a last minut repair was approved to correct the problem. This three wire splice is located in the wiring harness just on top of the transmission down by the three wires that connect to the three plugs located between the radiator and the tranny (or in the region about 12 inches under the battery). Follow the three wires from the front of the tranny and you'll see them disappear into a plastic wireing harness cover about a foot away from where they plug into the tranny. This wireing harness goes into a T junction with another wireing harness. Peel off the entire outer plastic conduit harness covering the T junction about 8 inches in all three directions and you will be able to see the other three wires wired together in a makeshift splice under some factory electrical tape. Peel that tape off and you will discover that the splice is corroded. Because of this corroded factory last minut splice which said corrosion appears about between 30,000 and 120,000 miles depending on how wet your geography is, the ECU cannot communicate with the selenoid pack that goes to the transmission so irregular shifting occurs, namely Limp Mode.

Most certified mechanics only detect the fact that the selenoid pack is not getting a signal or the ECU is not sending a signal so they think that either the selenoid pack is bad or the ECU is bad. They are wrong in both cases. Un-splice the three wires, cut off the corroded wire ends, cut back the insulation to the three wires and RE-SPLICE THEM. Then cover them with new tape. Now the tranny coil pack can recieve messages from the ECU to shift the tranny. Its that simple! ! ! ! ! ! ! Your eternal problem has now been permanently solved and your tranny will shift like new! ! ! ! One other thing, on some Mopar vans this simple problem that causes real havoc in these beautiful vans is the ground wire to the tranny is corroded and must be cleaned or replaced as it causes that same exact simptom of limp mode due to a bad connection.

If people making their complaints on this page knew this, they would still love their vans because they can fix it themselves. Mopar corperation knew this but cannot admit to it as it would cause the largest recall in U.S. history of any vehicle. Now you know what Mopar should have told every Caravan and Voyager purchaser from the get go, clean 3 little wires and problem solved. I assume many mechanics find this after replacing a transmission and re-wire the splice and never tell the customer so that customer thinks the new tranny solved the problem.

- vonbraun, Los Alamos, NM, USA