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'90 Plymouth Voyager - no start


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12-28-02, 06:25 PM   #1  
'90 Plymouth Voyager - no start

JoeF - You're right - it always pays to start with the basics. The Voyager I posted about a while back ( 3.3l V-6 fuel injected with loud racket when running) that wouldn't start the last time I did anything with it has turned up some more information in response to "the basics". Last time, I thought the problems were limited to the water pump and the serpentine belt tensioner pulley. Today, though, a compression check showed cylinder 3 dead as a hammer. A peek under the valve cover revealed a broken intake valve spring. I was pleased to see that the valve was still free to move up to the rocker arm. I'm praying this means no contact with the piston; the cylinder head is coming off to make sure.
This brings up another question or several. While I'm this far into it, are there any "tricks" or special procedures I should know about with this engine? How about any performance or reliability modifications I could or should make on the way? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks again - Chris

 
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12-28-02, 08:48 PM   #2  
Joe_F
Overall, Chrysler minivans are lackluster and reliability and Chrysler don't usually go in the same sentence......

I would pull both heads, have them checked for any valve train problems by a machine shop and reinstall them with new head gaskets and it should be fine.

 
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12-28-02, 10:35 PM   #3  
Just a thought, but if it were mine, I think I would replace the spring and check the compression again. If it has done any damage, it will show on the compression check. If it shows good compression, think of the unnecessary work that you would have done by pulling the head. Do what you think you need to do though...just my .02.

The 3.3 is one of the better v6 engines Chrysler used, and I wouldn't worry much about it being very unreliable. (but it did break a spring, huh?, lol). Of course, there are always some engines that are nothing but trouble from day one. It's the other things like the tranny, and some accessories (like the belt tensioner) that may give you grief once in a while.


"Who is John Galt?" - Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

God bless!

 
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12-28-02, 11:09 PM   #4  
Thanks, JoeF and cheese. My thinking on pulling the head was to check the top of the piston and the valve sealing face, but a problem (leak) in either area should show up in a follow-up compression check, right? Now, about changing the spring without removing the head - without compressed air to charge the cylinder, how would one keep the valve seated so the spring can be compressed? And is there a tool that will allow me to compress the spring with the head on the engine, or will I get to make one? Let me know what you think. Thanks lots - Chris

 
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12-29-02, 10:35 AM   #5  
Joe_F
My thought is that if there is one broken part, there may be others. I've never had broken internal valvetrain parts in any of the cars I've owned and I have been driving 15 years. LOL.

If you have access to an air compressor, there are adapters that can be used to keep the valve seated. Most parts stores have this little trick tool or can order it.

 
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12-29-02, 11:02 PM   #6  
Yup...you really need to use the compressed air method. You may be able to bring the piston for that cylinder to the top to keep the valve from falling into the cylinder, but it might be a pain trying to get the spring and retainer back on. There is a tool made for spring removal with the head on, and autozone should have it. You can "rent" it by giving them a deposit that you get back once you bring the tool back.


"Who is John Galt?" - Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

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12-30-02, 06:10 AM   #7  
Thanks again, guys. I guess I'll be trucking my compressor to the van after all. You think Auto Zone will have the air compressor-to-spark plug hole adapters you spoke of? They've got me throwing rocks at other parts houses for so many other reasons, and I really like their idea of tool "rental"!
Just to clarify before I go any further: are there not any procedures for enhancing performance or longevity that would be worth doing while I'm in this far? I would just like to think that I can get somewhere near the 350,000+ enjoyable miles we've got on my wife's '89 Olds. No, I don't mind fixing them if it means dodging a monthly payment!
Thanks again for all the input. I'll post again with results as soon as I get them. Later - Chris

 
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12-30-02, 06:59 AM   #8  
Joe_F
Nothing to increase inherent longevity except replacing it with a GM vehicle .

Yes Autozone should have the valve/air adapter. A couple of companies offer them, most of the tool catalogs have them as well.

 
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12-30-02, 12:57 PM   #9  
I'm not sure on the 3.3 L but on the 2.5L Caravan the tool your speaking of would not fit. There wasn't sufficient room to get the "feet" of the compressor onto the spring. There is another type, but I think its only available through a Dodge dealer. And the one I checked with wouldn't rent me the tool. This type hooks onto the rocker arm and compresses the spring..... I found that it is just as easy to pull the head right off. That way you can clean up the valves, and install new stem seals. And this may net you some of that gain in performance that you were talking about. Good Luck.

 
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12-31-02, 01:35 AM   #10  
From where you are now...there's not much you can do to help freshen the engine up. Replacing valve stem seals would be about the only thing...preventative maintainance-wise. I doubt you'll rack up 350k on this, but you might. You could choose to pull the heads and get them reworked, but then while you are that far, it wouldn't make sense not to slide the pistons out and have a look, re-ring it, replace the bearings, etc...etc... before you know it, you are knee-deep in an in-frame engine freshen-up.

Congrats on making that kind of mileage on your olds! Not that I ever doubt GM products, but to get one that far means you are a person who stays on top of vehicle maintainence.


"Who is John Galt?" - Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

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01-07-03, 06:34 AM   #11  
I had a few minutes with the van my last days off, and after pulling the rocker arms and shaft off and removing the broken valve spring, I noticed that the pushrod opposite the broken spring was bent. My thinking is that the lifter has failed(not bleeding down quickly enough), causing the bent pushrod and broken spring. What ideas have you got? And, if it is the lifter, can I replace just the lifter in question, or do I need to replace its partner(paired roller lifters) or ALL the lifters and the cam also? It's beginning to look like the engine's going to get both heads freshened up, although I really didn't want to put that much effort into the van just yet. We're not talking a great deal of money at this point, just elbow grease. Still, it's MY elbow grease... Let me know what you think. Thanks - Chris

 
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01-07-03, 07:09 AM   #12  
Joe_F
Put in the elbow grease now or you'll do it twice later!

Been proven time and time again!

 
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