1993 Dodge Grand Caravan Repeated CV Failure

dodge
grandcaravan

#1

I have a 1993 Dodge Grand Caravan with about 160,000 miles on it. The front end has been deteriorating steadily for some time now. I have no power brakes or power steering, but I do not think that this is related to my REAL problem: My driver side CV joint (or axle or whatever) failed last week. Upon inspection, my mechanic commented on how he was surprised that it held on long enough for me to get to his shop. It was replaced by a mechanic with a new (not re-manufactured) piece.
Yesterday I was driving a friend to the airport about 150 miles away, and 20 miles out of town, my van began wobbling in the front, and then shaking violently - consistent with my previous CV failure. After dropping my friend off at the airport, I proceeded to the nearest mechanic, who again commented on how he was surprised that I was able to make it to his shop. He said something about the last CV joint being too long or something against a tulip joint (or something, I should have written it down).
Initially it drove smoothly, as it did after the first fix, but on the way home I noticed a slight wobble that is connected to acceleration (that is, when I take my foot off of the gas, the wobble disappears). I am concerned that the CV is going to fail again. What would be causing this? Are the mechanics at fault, or is there another problem that propagates in the CV?


#2

If I Remember Correctly, Caravans of this era would have axle problems if the engine was not aligned in the chassis correctly. IIRC the problem usually showed up as axles popping out of a newly installed rebuilt transmission. So check the engine/transmission mounts to see if any are broken. If they are all intact inspect the structures they are mounted to for integrity. If everything looks colpesthetic loosen the mount to chassis bolts and reposition the engine.

You might consult with an independent tranmission repair shop that has experience with R & R of these transmissions.

Hope this helps.


#3

I agree with @Researcher

I also remember reading about that some time ago.


#4

I also agree. With the loss of power steering and brakes, I going to guess this has become a serious clunker with one wheel in the salvage yard. I think you should consider letting it go, if restoring the power steering and brakes is not an option. This van sounds like it is a disaster waiting to happen.