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My dad recently took ownership of a 00 Dodge Caravan SE 3.3 liter v6. I was in agreement with this because I know of the 3.3's reliability and history as a not good but great engine and having almost no problems, van has 110,000 miles, and one day out of the blue it started to misfire and shake with no check engine light what so ever, hooked it up and no codes but you could tell it was running like crap.

On a scan tool you have many features, a code reader with live data is the next best thing if you can't afford a scan tool, unfortunately a code reader with live data still wont help you to figure this problem.

Bottom line is when you research it on the internet, people speak of all sorts of things, intake gaskets, on a 3.3 highly unlikely, fuel injectors, on a Chrysler vehicle never, General Motors products suffer from this due to a few reasons, but it's irrelivant here to discuss rival brands at least to me, crank sensor maybe but doesn't have all the other symptoms to match, coil pack and plugs and wires which are more of a possibility.

Long story short the coil pack was the blame, the plugs from the previous owner were autolites another no no, even comparing the resistors in the champions to autolites you can clearly see autolites have smaller resistors and will wear faster causing poorer performance in the long run, go copper, copper's produce the best spark, forget platnum, you are paying more for platnum because the material costs more and takes longer to wear but the performance is not nearly as good as the copper. The resistor is in the porcelin part of the plug, you break the porcelin you can see the results for yourself to see what I mean. Some people think the higher price you pay for a plug means the better it is, not necessarily you pay for the extra cost in materials you often don't need or wont improve a thing on your engine, don't let the parts counter guy sell you up, under the hood of your vehicle is the recomended plug type, number and gap size do this and you will be good to go for many miles.

Often times when the coil packs go bad I have seen the plug wires effected as well, and is best to replace them since you can bet they probably are no good anyway it's probably only another 35.00 anyway why not. I did the 02 sensor since I was back there as well, these are hard to get at with the upper plenum still on. Fired the 3.3 up ran smooth as silk like nothing ever happened.

I decided to post this because my dad first searched internet sources trying to figure out what to aim for, and when he called me and told me what he found some of the things he said he read I laughed and said remember what I told you about Chrysler vehicles, they are not Ford's and not GM's they don't have the same issues as those brands, there are similarities but a lot of differences and unless you understand the differences you will never be accurate at diagnosing the problems on them. I came by with a small box of tools and a scanner as I had a pretty good idea of what it would be, but non the less I decided to enlighten him, I did the propane test around the intake area, if there was a leak there propane in that area would effect RPM in this case nothing, I knew it would be. Other tests performed by scanner so that wont help you guys.

So more than likely if you have a misfire like that no check engine light or even if you have one, and it is a misfire, more than likely, you are dealing with coil pack, wires, and possibly plugs. if you own a 3.3.

Hope this can help someone in the future... Maybe save time and second guessing...
 

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Thanks for the post, man. I have a 3.3 in my 99 GC, but have never had that problem with it. I did with a 3.5 1994 New Yorker, though.
 
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