Question about 1993 Dodge Caravan

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How to change time chain on a 3.3 v6 dodge caravan, easy way to look at timeing chain, so i can tell if it is bad

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  • dale blankenship Aug 29, 2010

    What symptoms are you having to suspect the timing chain? Generally a chain (as opposed to a rubber belt, which some engines use) will last the life of the engine.

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  • Dodge Master
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This design has no tensioner. Check the sprockets for wear on the tips--especially the crank sprocket. With the cover off, turn the crankshaft with a socket and see how close the chain comes to slipping backward on the sprocket. There are complete replacement procedures at AutoZone.com, which I will try to paste in below.

3.3L and 3.8L Engines

See Figure 18



how to change time chain on a 3.3 v6 dodge - 0900c15280215ddb.jpg enlarge_icon.gifenlarge_tooltip.gif
Fig. Fig. 18: Timing mark alignment-3.3L and 3.8L engines

  1. If possible, position the engine so that the No. 1 piston is at TDC on the compression stroke. Disconnect the negative battery cable. Drain the coolant.
  2. Remove the timing chain case cover. For more information, refer to the Front Timing Cover and Seal procedure, earlier in this section.
  3. Remove the camshaft gear attaching cup washer and remove the timing chain with both gears attached. Remove the timing chain snubber.

To install:
  1. Assemble the timing chain and gears.
  2. Turn the crankshaft and camshaft to line up with the key way locations of the gears.
  3. Slide both gears over their respective shafts and use a straight edge to confirm alignment.
  4. Install the cup washer and camshaft bolt. Tighten the bolt to 35 ft. lbs. (47 Nm).
  5. Check camshaft end-play. The specification with a new plate is 0.002-0.006 in. (0.051-0.052mm) and 0.002-0.010 in. (0.51-0.254mm) with a used plate. Replace the thrust plate if not within specifications.
  6. Install the timing chain snubber.
  7. Thoroughly clean and dry the gasket mating surfaces.
  8. Install new O-rings to the block.
  9. Remove the crankshaft oil seal from the cover. The seal must be removed from the cover when installing to ensure proper oil pump engagement.
  10. Using a new gasket, install the chain case cover to the engine.
  11. Make certain that the oil pump is engaged onto the crankshaft before proceeding, or severe engine damage will result. Install the attaching bolts and tighten to 20 ft. lbs. (27 Nm).
  12. Use tool C-4992, or equivalent, to install the crankshaft oil seal. Install the crankshaft pulley using a 5.9 in. suitable bolt and thrust bearing and washer plate L-4524, or equivalent. Make sure the pulley bottoms out on the crankshaft seal diameter. Install the bolt and tighten to 40 ft. lbs. (54 Nm).
  13. Install all other parts removed during the chain case cover removal procedure and fill the engine with oil.
  14. Connect the negative battery cable, road test the vehicle and check for leaks.

Posted on Aug 29, 2010

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My sincere apologies for the severly delayed response.
I am personally going back to answer your unanswered questions. I have only been on this site for the past 4-months as a free contributor.

I do not know if you still need this information, however I am answering it in case you still do.


Standard Answer for Timing Belts/Chains: 100,000 to 120,000 miles is when the Timing Belts/Chains start malfunctioning or failing. Some people want to go ahead and change them before malfunctions/failures happen. I just replaced mine on 2002 Dodge Grand Caravan which just turned 100K. Most Timing Belt/Chain failures will cause more costly engine damage when these fail, including a need to replace/rebuild an entire engine.

Again my apologies...
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