Fix + Fast
by Zach Isaacson • Also see our main minivan repairs page!
Here is a how-to guide to removing and replacing the EGR valve. The vehicle is a 2004 Grand Caravan with 3.3L engine. [Editor’s note: it probably applies to any vehicle with this engine, from a wide variety of years, and to similar V6 engines in the same vehicles. We tried this with a 2006 Town & Country as well.]
I purchased the valve from my local dealership. If I could have waited, I would have bought it from moparone.com. 2013 editor’s note: Chrysler EGR valves currently sell at discounted shops for around $85; a Standard brand EGR valve sells for around $70; a cheap Chinese one, around $35.
“ChryslerTech766” wrote, “Make sure to start the bolts by hand; they cross thread easily due to the tightness of the area given to work in, especially the bottom 10mm bolt.”
2013 update (by David Zatz)
We did the same job, with some slight differences. First, we should clarify that the red tab on the connector has to be pulled or shoved all the way over to the right before the connector can be removed; you see it locked in the last photo above, and here it is unlocked in the next photo.
As with Zach’s car, we had 8 mm bolts (visible) and 10 mm bolts (not visible). We used a quarter-inch socket wrench, starting out with a small breaker bar for extra leverage, to get the first few turns. We managed to reach the hardest-to-get bolt without interference from the alternator; with a 3/8” drive, we couldn’t do it, because the socket was ever so slightly larger. The same was true for using a deep socket instead of a small extension. There’s no spare room for the lower bolt at all. For that reason, I recommend that you start with this bolt, because if you can’t remove it, you’re not going to do anything else.
The old valve was made by Tata, the Indian company; it did not appear to be particularly dirty. The new one was a Standard, made in Mexico. It looked different but was a perfect fit. You can easily figure out where the bolts are by looking at the new one.
There are two gaskets that should come with the EGR valve. I didn’t know that and ordered them from RockAuto at around $1 each, from Fel-Pro (one was mis-labelled as “2002-03,” but should work up to the 2006 minivans and probably beyond). One has no up or down; the other does, so watch how the old gasket comes off. The ones in the Standard box, the Fel-Pros, and the OEM gaskets all seemed identical.
After installing the new one, don’t tighten the two main bolts too much at first — get them most of the way in, but leave them loose enough to make it easy to re-attach the EGR pipe (remembering the cardboard gasket).
You’ll need to clear the error codes before the check engine light goes off.
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