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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at purchasing a 1996 dodge stratus and the person selling it tells me it's in limp mode..... is this a common problem for stratus/cirrus/brezze transmissions as well? I know intrepids, limp mode is common, but is it common in stratus platforms? also, there isn't any heat/ac, but I got a code for the ac relay being blown. would this cause the blower not to blow? also, got an "EVAP SYstem fault code (31), msot commong cause is the canister leaking, but I cant' find it at any parts stores and I don't want to get raped by a dealer. anybody know where I can find it?
 

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Limp mode = common

Limp mode is common on ALL Chrysler vehicles with 42LE and 41TE transaxles, the design is basically the same on each, the only difference being the 42LE is designed for longitudinal FWD cars (LH cars like the Intrepid) and the 41TE is for transverse engines, neon, stratus, cirrus, sebring, minivans, etc.

Here's what the names mean, take for example a 42LE: 4 forward gears, load rating 2, longitudinal, electronic control.

The 42LE is also known as the A606, the 41TE is also known as the A604.

The newer trannies hold up better. I'd do a scan on that transaxle controller to see if it's serious or not. Limp mode can mean anything from a bad sensor, shift solenoid or a tranny that's about to drive its last mile!

You can't scan the transaxle controller by using the key method or handheld OBD scanner from Autozone, the only code you might get is P0700: general transaxle fault. The scan needs to be done at the dealer or at a tranny shop.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
****
 

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i had a 95 status and went into limp mode due to a bad 02 sensor. limp mode can be from numerous things--as stated earlier. do the key dance and get all codes and then repost. if you can get to an autozone, advance auto, etc. they can scan for free. not the transmission control module (TCM) but they can pull general codes. try pulling the negative cable and wait a little and let the computer reset itself and then see if it throws any codes at you.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
the problem is the owner "changed the battery"... my guess was to disconnect it to erase the engine light (read above, the EVAP code would illuminate the MIL, it wasn't on until I pulled the codes.... tough **** for her, she didn't know I knew the key trick for chryslers, probably could have had anybody else;) ) anywas, I know that there'd be a code thrown for the speed sensors (don't have the haynes, but I know it'd throw a code) so, the car probably needs to be run a while before the TCM picks up that fault again, correct? what should I look for when test driving? if the tranny sounds and shifts fine between 1+2, would that mean that the problem is electrical??? I'm checking it out tomorrow so any advice would be great!
 

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Apcsox said:
the problem is the owner "changed the battery"... my guess was to disconnect it to erase the engine light (read above, the EVAP code would illuminate the MIL, it wasn't on until I pulled the codes.... tough **** for her, she didn't know I knew the key trick for chryslers, probably could have had anybody else;) ) anywas, I know that there'd be a code thrown for the speed sensors (don't have the haynes, but I know it'd throw a code) so, the car probably needs to be run a while before the TCM picks up that fault again, correct? what should I look for when test driving? if the tranny sounds and shifts fine between 1+2, would that mean that the problem is electrical??? I'm checking it out tomorrow so any advice would be great!

If the tranny shifts OK from 1st to 2nd, then those gears are OK, however, look for any wierd stuff in 3rd and OD. Are the shifts firm when you floor it, or does it feel like mush? Any slipping? TORTURE the car, have some fun and see if it's broke. FLOOR that little car! :D

If the shifting seems confused or random, that means it needs to be trained (likely due to the battery disconnect) or that the tranny control solenoid is about to kick the bucket.

I'd still get it scanned, specifically, you want to know if the Clutch Volume Indexes or CVIs are within spec, if they arent, then it's rebuild time!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
okay, so, the saga continues..... (I almost feel like putting "A Long time ago in a town far, far, away.....")
anyways, I decided to take a gamble and buy the car, realized that the EVAP fault was a missing gas cap.... also, the blower motor not working.... yea, the fuse wasn't in there........ but, I noticed the problem when Iw as driving it..... the RPM's don't indicate anything and the digital odometer and gear indicator don't light up, atfer a few whacks it'd occasionally pick-up RPMs and the odometer would light up...... tranny shifts smoothly between 1+2 but if I get over 40ish, it almost feels like it's in neutral, the engine jsut revs.... once it drops I'd say near thirty, it kicks back into second gear.......... I've never had a limp car before (god that sounded dirty) but since it's not registering any RPMs, would that mean the output or input speed sensors are toast.... the car is in wicked good condition and I think $500 is a steal if that's all that's wrong with the tranny
 

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Discussion Starter #9
also, just pulled the plugs (at least the ones in the front of the engine.... damn transverse engine) and I noticed that there is oil on the plugs and in the plug tube ( don't know how it got past a plug that was screwed in there *shrugs*) all three plugs had oil on and in their tubes, I know if a piston ring goes bad that oil will get on the plug, but would it be normal for all three (or hell, maybe all six) piston rings to **** out?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
damn gauge cluster

anybody know what would cause the RPMs or the Odometer/gearshift indicator not to read properly???? also, when it finally does light up, according to the RPM's, I'm idling near 1500, which obviously I'm not, then the needle will sitck at the 1500 even after the engine is of then it'll randomly go back to the bottom........ WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THIS FRACKING CAR?!?!?! anybody who has had a limp mode intrepid, tell me your stories
 

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Discussion Starter #11
*bumpity bump bump*
 

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I know limp mode all too well... Plus I know cloud cars too... The speedo in them is notorious for going out, and it usually starts with the tach... My guess is that the speedo is going crazy and in turn causing the PCM (which the cluster talks to etc) is sending the TCM wrong signals and to be safe it goes into limp. My first try would to swap the cluster...

EDIT: re read the post, and oil in the spark plug tubes is a sign of bad o-rings on the valve cover... not a major concern, but hard to replace... just clean them out good and put dielectric grease on the plugs to keep them from getting oil in them etc... then when you feel confident, take the intake manifoild off (im assuming its the 2.5L) and pull the valve covers and replace the seals, gaskets, Distrubutor cap, wires, new plugs, clean the intake manifold etc...

And with my vast knowledge with limp mode, if its not shifting into 3rd or forth its a 95% chance it needs a rebuild or R&R... there is a ton of cloud cars in the junk yards near me and I think you can get yourself a lower mileage A604 for cheap
 

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Discussion Starter #13
hmmm, never thought of that, but isn't a digital odometer run through the BCM? I don't have moeny to throw around (remember, cancer patient, can;t work, still waiting for disabilty 6 months later ... ****ing government) Gr8crash, tells me to look at the tranny shift solenoid, but I think the tach is a cheaper option first.......... question, then won't I lose the car's mileage? great, odometer discrepencies
 

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Discussion Starter #14
and not to hijack my own thread, but, where the **** is gas almost $4 in massachusetts?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!??!?!??!?! the 2.89 is right down the street from me (thank god) but 3.77 is ****ing ludicurous (ludicurous speed, GO!)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
great, hey bobby, want a fully loaded 96 stratus? only $500
 

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$3.77 looks to be at Shell on 1475 Airport Rd in New Bedford... The thing with the Odometer in the cloud is that you will lose your mileage, but you can replace the tach and other units by swapping just that portion (very simply) all the cars computers talk to each other so if something goes wrong someone feels it somewherex
 

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Discussion Starter #18
okay, maybe not fully loaded, but it has autostick, fog lights, lighted vanity mirrors, 15" alloys, infinity system
 

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Discussion Starter #19
if only you could come by and maybe help me out, god knows I need it, buy stratus on a gamble hoping it was electrical to replace my dying trep, turn out stratus may be a piece of ****
 
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