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04 Touring Hesitation during idle

 
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Old 18 Mar 2010, 12:26 am
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Default 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

I've got an 04 Touring Ed. It's got an idle hesitation that makes the car shudder and act like it's gonna die.

I recently replaced the sparks and plugs with Champion Platinums gaped to .040 and the wires came from NAPA. The car runs very well with the new plugs and stronger than ever.

The hesitation was there before the plug replacement and I was disappointed that it did not fix that issue. The hesitation seems to be getting worse to a point to where my kids will ask me, "why does the PT do that?"

Mileage is 108k.

Could it be an exhaust sensor?

Thanks for any advice.
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Old 18 Mar 2010, 02:48 am
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

With your kind of mileage, we have to ask if you have changed the timing belt and the things that go with it. We recommend the belt be replaced at 100,000K. If not yo driving on borrowed time. It's just possible that the belt is beginning to stretch and that will cause the timing to go off.
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Old 18 Mar 2010, 10:21 am
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

Hi Crewzin, yeah, the timing belt was replaced last summer along with the water pump and fan, which apparently was only running at the highest speed at only an accredited Chrysler dealer (worst experience ever).

Driving to work today I noticed that it does not hesitate when it's cold, but once it warms up it hesitates like nuts and runs rough at idle. You can watch the tach dip down into the 500-600 range before recovering. But you don't see a problem while driving.
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Old 18 Mar 2010, 10:54 am
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

Get some starting fluid and spray along the intake manifiold seams - if idle smooths out, you have a bad intake gasket.
Also, double-check that ignition wires are seated - I foud it hard to get them to "click" - both ends.
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Old 18 Mar 2010, 12:18 pm
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

Thanks, QSDon. I'll check it out.
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Old 19 Mar 2010, 10:42 am
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

OK, I looked at the intake manifold gaskets and they all look good. I double checked my spark plug wires, and while they all clicked when I connected them one still had some travel left before it seemed snug. I removed the hose between the airbox and butterfly valve and the sensor inside was very dirty on the filter side, I removed it and cleaned it and also wiped the butterfly valve off as it was caked. Then I noticed that my air filter box was not seated properly which probably explains the caking on the sensor and butterfly valve.

Long story short, it has far less hesitation now but it still exists. I noticed that it hesitates when the cooling fan kicks on, almost like it's drawing more power from the alternator causing the plugs to get less? Or maybe there is more dirt in the throttle control and it needs to be cleaned? I'm not even sure how to do that.
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Old 19 Mar 2010, 06:14 pm
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimAtKSF View Post
OK, I looked at the intake manifold gaskets and they all look good. I double checked my spark plug wires, and while they all clicked when I connected them one still had some travel left before it seemed snug. I removed the hose between the airbox and butterfly valve and the sensor inside was very dirty on the filter side, I removed it and cleaned it and also wiped the butterfly valve off as it was caked. Then I noticed that my air filter box was not seated properly which probably explains the caking on the sensor and butterfly valve.

Long story short, it has far less hesitation now but it still exists. I noticed that it hesitates when the cooling fan kicks on, almost like it's drawing more power from the alternator causing the plugs to get less? Or maybe there is more dirt in the throttle control and it needs to be cleaned? I'm not even sure how to do that.

The fan is a problem in the PT, maybe on it's way out. They have inexpensive replacements on Ebay, can't say how good they are. Mine was done on my 04 Touring before I got it at the dealer at 39000 miles.
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Old 20 Mar 2010, 09:05 am
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

Hi, I see that you checked the intake manifold but did you spray some starting fluid around it? You have to use the spray. You will find a bad gasket instantly.
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Old 20 Mar 2010, 12:31 pm
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

DO NOT spray starting fluid around a running engine. Starting fluid is extremely flamable, and you stand the chance of setting your engine on fire!!! Use a carb or intake cleaner instead. It's still flamable, but not nearly as flamable as starting fluid!

For the records, timing belts break, they don't stretch. A timing belt is made with steel reinforcement bands, and when it gets worn out, it breaks. Just like drive belts, they can break, but they don't stretch. A timing chain can stretch.

Try slowly introducing a half can of seafoam through an intake hose. Seafoam is really good at cleaning carbon buildup, and may be a quick solution to your problem.
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Old 22 Mar 2010, 12:17 am
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Default Re: 04 Touring Hesitation during idle

I'll try Seafoam, but I'm wondering if I should just get my hands on some gaskets and just replace them?

Dino, the fan was replaced last summer. I have not done the starting fluid trick for the simple reason quoted by heifetz17.

I just ran a 300 mile trip to the coast and back with a car full of Boy Scouts and she ran well... with the exception of the idle. :-/ I'm considering the PCM upgrade. Any way to know what you have versus what the new version is?
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