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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Car is a 2001 Dodge Intrepid 2.7. It has a little over 100K miles now, bought it used with just under 80K. Since I've had it, I've changed oil a couple times (use Amsoil Synthetic), replaced spark plugs, filters, oil pressure sensor (had the problem where the light would flicker), and that's about it as far as the engine's concerned.

Yesterday it starts to act up some, and on the way back home it starts to overheat. The check engine light came on, and I was able to make it to a shop. The temp gauge reached about 3/4 (in the past, I don't think it ever went over halfway). So, it got hot, but according to the gauge it didn't get into the red zone (it was steaming though). Water had gotten into the oil, I could tell simply because it was about time to have to add oil to the car (it tends to use some oil, it should have been about time to add a quart to bring it back to full), and instead of being low it was overfull (if you can visualize the dipstick, there's the low line, the full line, then a little above that there's a black thing on the dipstick, the oil went above that black thing).

Today, the shop checks it out, says it's gotta be the water pump, and it's not a simple job to replace since the pump is built into the engine. It may be better to look into replacing the engine (they're not saying this to get money from me, the guy gave me a number of someone who's worked on some 2.7's before and might be able to help me out better).

So, basically, has anyone else had a similar problem? Was it just the water pump, or did more have to be replaced? Should I be looking at a new engine?

Thanks!

(BTW, I did try searching, but didn't find anything talking about the pump going bad causing water to get into the oil)
 

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Water pump is driven by the timing chain. Usually you replace both at the same time.
But you say your car is burning oil so I would be suspicious that the engine may be on its way out.
Any signs of sludge in the oil?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I haven't seen any evidence of sludge in the oil. I believe most of the oil is now lost through the oil cap, as there's always some built up next to it (I replaced it, but oil still gets out). It used to use more oil before I replaced the oil pressure sensor.

So, should this be a pretty simple fix?

Edit: Also, do you think a bad water pump could cause water to leak into the oil? Never heard of that happening before, then again I haven't heard of a water pump built into the engine.
 

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First off, its not unusual for a 2.7 with that may miles to use oil - if you check the threads in the top of the forum its most likely bad valve seals - which will result in about a quart every 1500 miles. Unless you are seeing clouds of smoke when you get on it, its most likely the seals.

As for the water in the oil - the water pump is driven by the timing chain and it will leak into the oil if there is a major water pump failure which is not unusual with this engine - a lot of times the shaft shears which will result in overheating and water in the oil. If it just happend and the car has had regular oil changes it will probably run around $1000 for the repair - have them do the timing chain, guides and tensioner when they do the water pump otherwise you are wasting your money. While they have it apart (they are already better then 1/2 way there) have them replace the valve seals. Once its back together do an oil flush - you can do a couple of quick oil changes a 50 miles apart with the filter with cheap oil to get any sludge out that may have occurred due to the water pump failure. Then put it on synthetic (Amsoil / Redline / Mobilone) for a short run (maybe 1000 miles) and change it again with the filter.

The first step would be to see how bad the sludge problem is. Have them pull the passenger side valve cover to see if its just a recent problem or a long term build up. If its recent then you can get away with just doing what I described above. If it looks like a lot of long term build up then you may want to consider a replacement engine.

2.7 will run for a long time if they are taken care of.
 

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josetann said:
Edit: Also, do you think a bad water pump could cause water to leak into the oil? Never heard of that happening before, then again I haven't heard of a water pump built into the engine.
Yes a bad water pump will dump coolant into the oil because its mounted to the front of the engine, inside the timing case. A lot of motors are that way now. Many are driven off the timing belt or chain depending on the motor. Now, another possible suspect is head gaskets. They too will dump into the oil, depending on where they end up failing (between the water and oil passages), and once the cylinder portion of the gasket fails, it will run crappy. Seems as if you might have caught this relatively quickly and might not need a new motor.

BTW, its not an oil pressure sender, its just a switch (on/off). An actual sender would have a varying signal for a gauge, which would have been very useful on these cars. I'm sure most every owner would have liked an oil pressure gauge.
 

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You seem to be having more problems then me but Midas told me the same thing... "You need a new engine"...

In my case...

They said you need a new engine because one of the timing chain guides broke because of the waterpump seizing up... the problem is they didnt mention anything about a waterpump!! They couldnt even do a little research.... my cars at 100k... the timing chain and waterpump should have been swapped out... i just put it off too long..

bad and good news is my timing chain only jumped one tooth and I dont believe I've bent a valve because turning the timing chain crank was pretty normal... not difficult or impossible as if a valve was bent...

But good luck! People will have advice for you here...
 

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josetann said:
I haven't seen any evidence of sludge in the oil. I believe most of the oil is now lost through the oil cap, as there's always some built up next to it (I replaced it, but oil still gets out). It used to use more oil before I replaced the oil pressure sensor.

So, should this be a pretty simple fix?

Edit: Also, do you think a bad water pump could cause water to leak into the oil? Never heard of that happening before, then again I haven't heard of a water pump built into the engine.
If oil is leaking past your filler cap , you may want to replace your PCV valve, I read elsewhere on this site that Dodge dealers have a new and improved PCV valve for the 2.7 that has a higher flow rate and is not available at auto parts stores.
 

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ThaArtist said:
They said you need a new engine because one of the timing chain guides broke because of the waterpump seizing up..
bad and good news is my timing chain only jumped one tooth and I dont believe I've bent a valve because turning the timing chain crank was pretty normal... not difficult or impossible as if a valve was bent...

But good luck! People will have advice for you here...
If the water pump seized, with the chain still on it you wouldn't be able to turn the motor over. so if the motor still turns over, their full of **** or the chain came off or broke.

You shouldn't be able to tell if a valve is bent just because it seems to turn over normal. If a valve was bent, it could be stuck open and there will be slack between the top of the valve and the rocker and cam lobe, so you wouldn't feel anything. Even if its stuck closed you might not feel it either. Once its running, you'll know pretty quickly if its bent shut or bent open. If its bent shut, I imagine there'd be some noises as the cam is beating on the rocker trying to open the valve, and after awhile will more than likely trash that cam lobe and/or rocker.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just an update, the mechanic was goint to take off the side valve cover to check on sludge, but when he got to it noticed a lot of other parts needed to be taken off. He said he could still do it, but it'd need to be all put together before the next guy got to it (which makes sense, if I was a mechanic I wouldn't want to be handled a box of parts and a car with its engine half taken apart). So, still no idea on how bad it is.

One other thing, if it matters, it was running a tad rough (idled rough, plus didn't seem to have full acceleration, had I not known the car that well I wouldn't even notice, so it's not like it was hardly running at all). I don't "think" anything else major went wrong, but I really don't know that much about these cars. The check engine light came on, which I later think meant the oil pressure may have been low (but, wouldn't a separate light come on for that?). The temp never got into the red area (and was just a tad over halfway when the engine light came on), so I don't think it came on for that reason.

Still undecided whether I should have it fixed, or just buy another car and sit on this one for a while. My dad's a teacher at a high school, they used to have a shop department, if they still do then I could virtually get the labor for free (I guess I should donate something if they fix it, I dunno how that works). Just need something with A/C for the next few months, during the winter we can just use the old Mercedes (heat works GREAT, A/C is completely shot though).
 

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Id check the fans too.... I have KNOWN of 2.7l engines to go bad WAY before 80,000 miles. Mine has 192,000 and its a 2001 also. Replace the water pump, timing chains, PCV valve, desludge it(mechanic should know how), and it might cost around 1500 at a private shop... STAY AWAY from midas, dealership, etc... they will charge MUCH MORE!
 

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r0meo021 said:
Id check the fans too.... I have KNOWN of 2.7l engines to go bad WAY before 80,000 miles. Mine has 192,000 and its a 2001 also. Replace the water pump, timing chains, PCV valve, desludge it(mechanic should know how), and it might cost around 1500 at a private shop... STAY AWAY from midas, dealership, etc... they will charge MUCH MORE!
Romeo - curious as to what mileage your has on it when you changed the water pump and chains ? Did you do all 3 timing chains or the just the main one.

Thanks.....Phil
 

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175,000 miles.

Well, i finally decided to put my car in the shop and get it checked out.
heres what he did............
Replace timing chain with kit(includes chains, and a bunch or other stuff)
desludged motor (there was ALOT of sludge)
replace both front wheel bearings
replace water pump
recharge AC
replace oil pan gasket
flush transmission and replace filter
replaced worn vaccuum hoses
flush radiator
check tensioner(sp)
oil change
tune up
----------------------
grand total- $1417.11

From this thread
http://www.dodgeintrepid.net/forums/showthread.php?t=60942
 

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Good price for all that work & parts. Must have been a private mechanic rather than a dealer. The dealer would have charged close to that much just for labor. Yes ?

What kind of oil and oil change interval had you been using up to this work being done ? I'm curious about the sludge that you found in yours.

Thanks for the info Romeo.
 
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