Chrysler Caravan/Voyager/Town and Country 1996-1999

Engine

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OIL LEVEL CHECK



See Figures 1, 2 and 3



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Fig. Fig. 1: The engine oil level dipstick is located in the front of the engine compartment, on the radiator side of the engine

The engine oil level is checked with the dipstick which is located on the radiator side of the engine.

The oil should be checked before the engine is started or five minutes after the engine has shut OFF. This gives the oil time to drain back to the oil pan and prevents an inaccurate oil level reading.

Remove the dipstick from the tube, wipe it clean, and insert it back into the tube. Remove it again and observe the oil level. It should be maintained within the FULL (or MAX ) mark on the dipstick.

Do not overfill the crankcase. This will cause oil aeration and loss of oil pressure.



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Fig. Fig. 2: Always maintain the engine oil level to the FULL mark. If the level drops down to, or below the ADD mark, top it off to the FULL mark with 1 quart of oil



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Fig. Fig. 3: For easier filling and to avoid spilling, always use a funnel when adding engine oil

OIL & FILTER CHANGE



See Figures 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 3


CAUTION
The EPA warns that prolonged contact with used engine oil may cause a number of skin disorders, including cancer! You should make every effort to minimize your exposure to used engine oil. Protective gloves should be worn when changing the oil. Wash your hands and any other exposed skin areas as soon as possible after exposure to used engine oil. Soap and water, or waterless hand cleaner should be used.

The manufacturer's recommended oil change interval is 7500 miles (12,000 km) under normal operating conditions. We recommend an oil change interval of 3000-3500 miles (4800-5600 km) under normal conditions; more frequently under severe conditions such as when the average trip is less than 4 miles (6 km), the engine is operated for extended periods at idle or low speed, when towing a trailer or operating in dusty areas.

In addition, we recommend that the filter be replaced EVERY time the oil is changed.

Please be considerate of the environment. Dispose of waste oil properly by taking it to a service station, municipal facility or recycling center.

  1. Run the engine until it reaches normal operating temperature. Then turn the engine OFF .
  2.  
  3. Remove the oil filler cap.
  4.  
  5. Raise and safely support the front of the vehicle using jackstands.
  6.  
  7. Slide a drain pan of at least 5 quarts (4.7 liters) capacity under the oil pan. Wipe the drain plug and surrounding area clean using an old rag.
  8.  



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Fig. Fig. 4: After placing a drain pan in correct position, loosen the oil pan drain plug



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Fig. Fig. 5: Remove the plug and allow the oil to drain until it stops dripping. Be careful not to drop the plug into the pan



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Fig. Fig. 6: Examine the the drain plug and gasket for wear or damage, and replace if necessary. The drain plug must always be installed with a gasket

  1. Loosen the drain plug using a 17mm socket or a box wrench. Turn the plug out by hand, use a rag, if necessary, to shield your fingers from the hot oil. By keeping an inward pressure on the plug as you unscrew it, oil won't escape past the threads and you can remove it without being burned by hot oil. Quickly withdraw the plug and move your hands out of the way, but be careful not to drop the plug into the drain pan, as fishing it out can be an unpleasant mess. Allow the oil to drain completely.
  2.  
  3. Examine the condition of the drain plug for thread damage or stretching, then examine the plug gasket for cracks or wear. Replace the drain plug, if damaged. However, it is usually recommended that the drain plug gasket be replaced.
  4.  
  5. Install the drain plug and gasket. Tighten the drain plug to 20 ft. lbs. (27 Nm) on 2.4L and 3.3L/3.8L engines or 29 ft. lbs. (39 Nm) on 3.0L engines. Do not overtighten the plug.
  6.  



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Fig. Fig. 7: This illustrates why it is recommended to replace the used oil pan drain plug gasket after it is removed. The used one usually becomes flattened out and distorted



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Fig. Fig. 8: Loosen the filter using a strap-type oil filter wrench

  1. Move the drain pan under the oil filter. Use a strap-type or end cap-type wrench to loosen the oil filter. Cover your hand with a rag, if necessary, and spin the filter off by hand, but turn it slowly.
  2.  

Be careful when removing the oil filter, because the filter contains about 1 quart of hot, dirty oil.



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Fig. Fig. 9: After rotating the filter off, always keep the opening of the filter straight up to prevent any of the old oil, still contained in the filter, from spilling out



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Fig. Fig. 10: Always check the filter adapter surface once the old filter is removed. The filter mounting gasket may have remained stuck to the surface. Be sure to clean the contact surface as well

  1. Empty the old oil filter into the drain pan, then properly dispose of the filter.
  2.  
  3. Using a clean shop towel, wipe off the filter adapter on the engine block. Be sure the towel does not leave any lint which could clog an oil passage.
  4.  
  5. Coat the rubber gasket and pour some fresh oil into the new filter before installation; this will lubricate the engine quicker during initial startup. Spin the filter onto the adapter by hand until it contacts the mounting surface, then tighten it an additional 1 / 2 - 3 / 4 turn. Do NOT overtighten the filter.
  6.  



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Fig. Fig. 11: Before installing a new oil filter, lightly coat the rubber gasket with clean engine oil



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Fig. Fig. 12: Pour some fresh oil into the new filter before installation to lubricate the engine quicker during initial start-up

  1. Carefully lower the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. Refill the crankcase with the correct amount of fresh engine oil. Please refer to the Capacities chart later in this section.
  4.  
  5. Install the oil filler cap.
  6.  
  7. Check the oil level on the dipstick. It is normal for the level to be a bit above the full mark until the engine is run and the new filter is filled with oil. Start the engine and allow it to idle for a few minutes.
  8.  


WARNING
Do not run the engine above idle speed until it has built up oil pressure, as indicated when the oil light goes out.

  1. Shut off the engine and allow the oil to flow back to the crankcase for a minute, then recheck the oil level. Check around the filter and drain plug for any leaks, and correct as necessary.
  2.  

When you have finished this job, you will notice that you now possess four or five quarts of dirty oil. The best thing to do is to pour it into plastic jugs, such as milk or old antifreeze containers. Then, locate a service station or automotive parts store where you can pour it into their used oil tank for recycling.

Improperly disposing of used motor oil not only pollutes the environment, it violates federal law. Dispose of waste oil properly.

 
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