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2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

 
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 09:21 am
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Default 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

I just had over $4050 worth of repairs done to my 2001 PT Cruiser. $2337 of that was covered under warranty. The rest, which came out of pocket, was preventative maintenance, more or less. I just want to outline what I recently had done to see if you guys think any of this may be related to my curring issue.

The head gasket on the car had blown, there were 83,412 miles on the car at the time.

The repairs are as follows - Note the right-aligned prices include labor. I figure this will be good reference for anyone else who needs similar work done, and also for people to tell me about how badly the repair shop screwed me with the prices.

Head Gasket/Timing Belt/Water Pump -
$1134.42
3000 Mile Maint. (Oil Change/New Filter)
$25.95
Engine Mounting Bracket Replacement (1)
$186.90
Rt. Lower Control Arm Bushing -
$164.13
Timing Belt Cover Replacement -
$336.15
Pressure Test Cylinder Head - Resurfaced. Exhaus Valve Guides & Preform Valve Job -
$490

The above were covered under Warranty - The parts were $608.79, labor was $1,728.76.

The following is what I paid for out of pocket.

Remove/Replace Themostat & Gasket -
$181.15
Timing Belt - Removed/Replaced All Belts. REplaced Front Engine Seals, installed new water pump, refilled cooling system -
$1240.34

There are breakdowns for the parts on most of these things if anyone is interested in me going into further detaile.

Now - The current problem - When accelerating in the lower RPM range (1000-2500) the car seems to be missing, the acceleration drops off, then picks right back up. After the car makes it to 3rd gear it seems to be fine. It does it if I'm sitting idle, but in gear, as well. There's a slight jerk to it which I can clearly feel when it does this.

My initial reaction is spark plugs, as those didn't get any attention when all of the work was done, however I would fathom that if they saw anything wrong they would have mentioned it. At this point I have bought new plugs and intend to check out one of the DIY walkthroughs on replacing them later today - but would love any input/feedback you guys can give.

Thank you very much for your time if you made it through all this.
-Josh
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 10:02 am
Hooligan's Avatar
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

Josh, the only thing I can add, is to also replace plug wires with performance grade wires. Use dielectric grease on the boots and anti seize on the plugs after gapping at .040, not .050 as noted under the hood. You didn't mention replacing the belt tensioner as most here have suggested.
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2008 Silver Steel Metallic, Touring, NA, Sirius; Chromed door handles; lower grille; fog light surrounds; chrome front & rear bumpers strips; Airaid air filter; Bassani duals; Modesty Cover; Autolite AP5263 Platinum Plugs (.040); Crane Plug Wires; NAPA Ceramic pads; Blane hood struts; PTeazer Gas, Brake & Foot Rest Pedals, '05 Rear Step Pad, Stainless Door Sills, Llumar tint, "A" Piller chrome; APC Strut Bar

Last edited by CREWZIN; 08 Jul 2008 at 12:15 pm.
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 10:06 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

Josh,

One of the biggest things to change on the cruiser is the plug wires. Might as well do them when you do the plugs. The new gap for the plugs is .040in not .050in as first recommended. Also you want to use anti-seize on the threads of the plugs and dielectric grease for a good seal on the wires ends (makes a good contact and keeps out moisture). I won't bet on it, but I'd give it 99% chance that once you put new plugs and wires on, your problems will go away.

Too bad you didn't have that done with your other work. All the parts are out of the way when they did the head gasket.


Darn Ernie, you beat me by 3 minutes. I guess I type too slow.
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Last edited by CREWZIN; 08 Jul 2008 at 12:15 pm.
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 10:13 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CREWZIN View Post
Too bad you didn't have that done with your other work. All the parts are out of the way when they did the head gasket.
You are preachin' to the choir brother =)

Unfortunately I'm at work right now but saw a link to a DIY walkthrough earlier but the firewall here blocked the site, but I've read several people who said they're quite mechanically challenged and they managed to get it done, so I'm hoping I'll be in the same boat and be able to get this done later tonight.

The wires on the plugs right now are Mopars, quite possibly the original wires that've been on the car for all the 83k miles on 'er.

About how much should I expect to drop on new wires?

Edit: Where are my manners!? Thank you both for responding with your input and in such a timely manner. I do greatly appreciate it!

Last edited by Joshtalgia; 08 Jul 2008 at 10:20 am.
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 10:17 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

Your firewall shouldn't drop this, it's on this site....

Spark Plug Guide

Figure about $50 for plugs at www.RaceandStreet.com Look under "store" and then under "performance parts". FREE hat or visor with a $75 purchase. Seriously, we all use Race & Street for parts. Fast shipping (sometimes free) and great personal service.

P.S. since you have a 2001 (like mine) the hardest part will be taking off and putting back on the EGR pipe that's attached to the back of the upper manifold. Read the instructions carefully and it can be done without too much trouble with the right tools.
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Last edited by CREWZIN; 08 Jul 2008 at 10:22 am.
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 10:46 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CREWZIN View Post
Your firewall shouldn't drop this, it's on this site....

Spark Plug Guide

Figure about $50 for plugs at www.RaceandStreet.com Look under "store" and then under "performance parts". FREE hat or visor with a $75 purchase. Seriously, we all use Race & Street for parts. Fast shipping (sometimes free) and great personal service.
These are the only ones I see there >
PT Cruiser Crane Fire Wires BACK ORDERED till August 10th: Race and Street

And they're back-ordered until August 10th.
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 11:08 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

OK, if your can't wait, I've done a search and the best prices I can come up with is Revel Enterprise. I've dealt with the owner personally in Maryland and at some car shows. Very reliable, nice guy to deal with. Not sure of his shipping charges. There's a choice on thickness in the wires he sells, the 7mm is good enough for the Non-turbo.

PT Cruiser Magnecor Ignition Wires
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 11:32 am
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Question Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

CREWZIN,
What do you recommend for the H.O. Turbo?
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 11:39 am
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

I may have found the Crane Wire's elsewhere locally. Unfortunately tonight's probably going to be the only day this week where I'm going to have the time to do this, so hopefully I can pick some up locally. Thanks again!
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Old 08 Jul 2008, 12:21 pm
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Default Re: 2001 PT Automatic. Missing/Jerking during low RPM acceleration.

Frank,

Since I don't have the Turbo I personally can't recommend exact wires but I really don't think you need anything special except if the fit is different. Some sites say and sell different wires for the turbo. Revel Enterprise said their wires for the 01-03 are for both non Turbo and Turbo. I really don't think there's any difference in fit as they both have the same 4 plug coil and center dropped holes for the other end so what could be the difference?

Anybody reading this, if you know a difference shout up. What we all know is the Turbo takes Copper plugs becuase of the extra heat where the non-Turbo can take the Platinums.
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