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Grand Caravan Gas Mileage

boxer's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 26

11-19-03, 01:27 PM   #1  
Grand Caravan Gas Mileage

I have a 96 Grand Caravan, 3.8L engine, 80K miles. Recently, the gas mileage has dropped to about 13.5 MPG in city driving. It has never been great but I usually got about 16 MPG. On the highway I seem to be getting about 23 to 24 MPG, which is fine.

I have regularly maintained it -- oil changes, tire inflation, replace air filter etc. The plugs are not supposed to be replaced until 100K miles. I don't think there is much of anything else to "tune-up". What could be the cause and the fix?

One mechanic suggested a fuel injector service. Something he would put in the gas tank and spray on the injectors. Do those things help? Can I do it myself and what make/brand is good? He also suggested spraying the throttle body.

Your thoughts are appreciated.

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davo's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,417

11-19-03, 02:04 PM   #2  
Injector cleaner won't hurt.Go to the auto parts and ask for their suggestion on brand,they may only have a couple anyhow.I would consider changing the plugs now if I were you and the fuel filter if it hasn't been done recently.While at the auto parts have them check for codes.Autozone does this at no charge for customers.

billys68ss's Avatar

Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 1,459

11-19-03, 03:26 PM   #3  
A true Injection Cleaning is done with a pressurized canister and chemicals that the average consumer cant normally buy. Once you do that you should change the plugs. Spark plugs should be changed on that vehicle around 70k if not sooner. 100k tune ups are a marketing ploy and do not hold water. Your vehicle uses a platinum plug, and a comparable plug should be installed. The standard plug is Champion and they are hard to buy anywhere except at a dealer.
Hope this is helpful to ya,

P.S. Oil changes and tire rotations is NOT regular maintenance. There is alot more to it. There should be a little book in the dash pocket of your vehicle. Blow the dust off of it and see what you havent done yet.

mike from nj's Avatar
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11-19-03, 10:44 PM   #4  
mike from nj
even if the plugs are good to 100,000 miles, i would be doing them at 60,000.

maybe get friendly with someone with a scan tool, and look at all the sensors, a lazy oxygen sensor will kill gas mileage and might not set a code yet.

i've never used or seen used injector cleaner so i can't comment on that.

there's a lot of variables to city driving, and only a 2.5 mpg difference that you notice, how long has this been going on?

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