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Ray and Chrysler

I’ve noticed listening to the podcasts of late Ray seems to enjoy commenting on Chrysler products, about them being sort of frustrating to repair. But it usually isn’t clear where all this is coming from. Is this Ray/Chrysler thing an inside joke of some kind?

Having worked on my wife’s ex-Intrepid, I understand where they’re coming from. That car was not designed with service top-of-mind.

I’ve generally found the Intrepids fairly easy to work on. What kind of trouble did you have?

Could it be I don’t remember witch brother it was because one of them drove a 62 dodge dart that the other brother was always getting down on?

General annoyance with access for basic stuff. You should be able to pull a battery out from the top. I shouldn’t have to open a panel in the fender liner and turn the wheel hard over or remove it just to get a battery out. Stuff like that. Nothing too hair-pulling but annoying nonetheless.

I like it when cars are designed so that owners can take care of the basics without too much monkeying around. Batteries should come out the top. Wheels should have lug nuts, not lug bolts. The jack should not be stored in the engine compartment where it gets covered in grease and oil and makes a huge mess if you ever have to use it (looking at you, '89 Dodge Caravan). Basic stuff like that.


True, but since batteries generally last 5 years or more I imagine most cars have a battery replaced once, maybe twice in the life of the car, unless there are some other electrical issues. Your Intrepid had the battery in the fender, a LeSabre had it under the back seat, a Cobalt had it under the floor of the luggage compartment.

As for jacks and spares, who uses them anymore? Last week a capable and able bodied man paid a $100 towing bill to have his F150 towed to the shop with a flat tire rather than get on the ground, pull the spare down, and change it himself.

The Lesabre had the battery in the trunk?!? :grin:

Indeed, mine does. Not a huge pain, I’ve changed it once in 120k miles. I did find it odd at first, though. I wonder why they did that? It doesn’t appear to be a lack of space issue.

The Chrysler battery in the front fender, turn the wheel, remove the liner, etc. is kind of annoying, though. I will have to agree with Mr. Shadow. I hate it when one of those model Chrysler’s gets scrapped with the battery on it. Slows down the depollution process quite a bit. I generally resort to a more invasive procedure with the forks of the front end loader to extract the battery lol.

Another thing I’ve noticed when processing scrap cars- Ford’s seem to have the low pressure port in hard to reach places. I guess all vehicles have quirks.

Tom had the 1963 Dodge Dart, but if I remember correctly Ray had a Caravan,Dakota, and Colt Vista at one point or another as personal cars.


Weight distribution for one. Also I have noticed that the farther away from the engine compartment the battery is the longer they seem to last. Heat kills batteries.

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I have asked this question before and never gotten an answer, maybe @CapriRacer knows. If your 4 tires have 30k miles, and the full size spare has 0miles, what do you do then for an awd that requires 5k mile tire rotation?

Keep rotating your tires every 5K miles and leave the spare tire out of the equation?

I guess I don’t understand your question.

What car is? They are designed for assembly at the factory with whatever special tools are needed. I’ve had space problems doing repairs on my cars for about 25 years.

I’m with @asemaster on battery location. My father in-law’s 2005 LeSabre is still on the original battery, as are our 2009 and 2010 Cobalts with the battery in the trunk. IMO, all manufacturers should relocate the battery out of the engine compartment.

2005 and still on the original battery? A battery has lasted 16 years? My 05 Lesabre is on it’s third as of this year, and I thought that was pretty decent, since each battery has lasted 7 or 8 years.

Yeah, I get the weight distribution thing to an extent… I don’t think I’d notice the difference in handling if the battery was in the engine compartment, though. Maybe it rides slightly better with a little weight in the back? Not that I’m complaining that the battery is under the rear seat. It’s a non issue.

Standard responses say that all 4 tires on an AWD vehicle should be the same make, model, and state of wear. Therefore, you have to replace all the tires or shave the spare down to the same tread depth.

Now I am assuming that if a vehicle REQUIRES 5K rotations, it is sensitive to tire diameter, and your owners manual ought to say what to do. But - PLEASE - do not assume that if your AWD vehicle doesn’t say anything, that it is OK. All too often, issues with tires on AWD vehicles isn’t adequately addressed in the owners manuals - and shame on the vehicle manufacturers for not being explicit about this.

Say I get a nail in the sidewall, 30k on the tires, and I put the full size 0 miles spare on, The question is what to do. Shave the spare, buy 4 new I mean it has got to be an issue in my mind, sorry if I was not clear.

My guess would be, with the spare on, don’t drive further than X miles and no faster than Y mph. I have no idea what the value of X or Y are.

The trade off is the cost to run heavy gauge copper wires the length of the vehicle. With the cost of copper these days, that’s not cheap. I just recently replaced the original battery in my Camry and it sits for extended times but I live in a cooler climate. All my batteries last 7-10 years so my vote goes to less expensive installation costs :wink:

My old vette(s) have the battery behind the driver’s seat, in the passenger cabin. Expensive proposition back then as it has a special vent tube and fairly long cabling…

I don’t see where the spare figures in to that. It’s a spare, designed to get you to where you can have a tire fixed or replaced. Maybe if it’s a newish car with 30K in it I might consider buying the same brand and model as the spare and putting the spare into service, but you also have to figure the cost of dismounting the spare tire from the spare wheel and installing it on the road wheel, and mounting a good used on the spare wheel.

But let’s say the car is the average age of a car on the American road, 11 years old. There’s no way I’m taking an 11 year old tire and putting it into regular service.