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Old 07-11-2012, 08:11 PM   #1
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


A few months ago my truck started jumping RPM's while cruising, and dropping RPM's, even dying, at stops. I ended up pulling the distributor cap to find that 2 of the 6 nodes were corroded beyond recognition. So I replaced the distributor cap, the rotor, the spark plugs, AND the wires. PERFECT! The truck ran phenomenally, even got a whole 4 MPG more than before. ..... well.... 3 months later and I'm having the exact same problem. Does anyone have any idea what would be causing this?? It hasn't rained in 94 days, so I know it's not moisture getting under the cap.

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Old 07-11-2012, 08:18 PM   #2
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


Have you checked under the cap to see if they are corroded again?

Check your ground wire, at the battery and the chassis/engine. I've found that to be a common, often-overlooked problem that can manifest itself in many different ways.

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Old 07-11-2012, 08:25 PM   #3
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


I had that exact same truck. Loved it. Same problem. It's the battery.
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:27 PM   #4
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


Did you replace the worn ignition parts with OEM parts? Mopars aren't always friendly with aftermarket parts.

Other common problems are a failed IAC motor, failing ignition coil, weak fuel pressure, other mechanical or electrical faults.
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Old 07-11-2012, 09:05 PM   #5
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodenfish
Did you replace the worn ignition parts with OEM parts? Mopars aren't always friendly with aftermarket parts.

Other common problems are a failed IAC motor, failing ignition coil, weak fuel pressure, other mechanical or electrical faults.
IAC was the first thing I thought of and had it checked out but it turned out to be fine
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Old 07-11-2012, 09:06 PM   #6
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


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Originally Posted by CopperClad
I had that exact same truck. Loved it. Same problem. It's the battery.
yes, I have it with a quad cab. its my baby haha. what did you do about your battery? was there a certain one that worked? this battery is fairly new, maybe 18 months old at the most.
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Old 07-12-2012, 04:55 PM   #7
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


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Originally Posted by Woodenfish View Post
Did you replace the worn ignition parts with OEM parts? Mopars aren't always friendly with aftermarket parts.

Other common problems are a failed IAC motor, failing ignition coil, weak fuel pressure, other mechanical or electrical faults.
That's what came to my mind. Some of those replacement parts are really crappy. Some of the bottom-end parts store distributor caps actually have aluminum contact points. Not so good...
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Old 07-12-2012, 04:57 PM   #8
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


Well i replaced the iac and tps (guy at work cut me a good deal on the parts) and still no luck. All the parts ive been using are duralast ive never had issues with them before. I used them in my old 2000 dakota sport and it ran great up to 250,000 miles. Afraid it's gunna be a vacuum leak. Any easy way to do a self leak check?
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Old 07-12-2012, 05:00 PM   #9
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


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Originally Posted by krisko09 View Post
Well i replaced the iac and tps (guy at work cut me a good deal on the parts) and still no luck. All the parts ive been using are duralast ive never had issues with them before. I used them in my old 2000 dakota sport and it ran great up to 250,000 miles. Afraid it's gunna be a vacuum leak. Any easy way to do a self leak check?
The best way I've found is to wait until the engine is cool, then start it up, and with it running, spray carb cleaner around hoses & tubes. If there's a vacuum leak it'll suck the car cleaner in and cause the engine to rev up.

That'll get you in the right area. Then you can usually find the leak pretty easily.
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Old 07-12-2012, 08:17 PM   #10
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


Mopar distributor caps have a vent while others do not or do not function. Moisture from condensation or humidity has been known to corrode poor replacement parts.

There is also another known engine problem area to check for a vacuum leak. There is a steel cover bolted to the underside of the intake manifold and its gasket cracks. Removal of the intake manifold is required to replace the intake's pan gasket. You can look down the throttle body with a strong light and check for gasket material.

Like I said earlier, Mopar's really need the right OEM cap and Champion spark plugs.
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:12 PM   #11
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


Is it throwing a check engine light? If so, have it read. If not, God be with you. Vacuum leaks suck.
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:23 PM   #12
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


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Originally Posted by krisko09 View Post
Well i replaced the iac and tps (guy at work cut me a good deal on the parts) and still no luck. All the parts ive been using are duralast ive never had issues with them before.
Oooh, please don't shotgun your truck with a bunch of aftermarket parts. Parts need to be tested before replacement. Replacement parts have to be manufactured with proper calibrations. Aftermarket parts generally suck. A faulty TPS would not cause your issue. The IAC and TPS could of been easily tested without replacement. Why have you been reluctant to have your truck diagnosed at the dealer?
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Old 07-12-2012, 10:18 PM   #13
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


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Originally Posted by Woodenfish View Post
Oooh, please don't shotgun your truck with a bunch of aftermarket parts. Parts need to be tested before replacement. Replacement parts have to be manufactured with proper calibrations. Aftermarket parts generally suck. A faulty TPS would not cause your issue. The IAC and TPS could of been easily tested without replacement. Why have you been reluctant to have your truck diagnosed at the dealer?
Aftermarket parts are a funny thing. Even the cheap ones will work well on some vehicles, but even the best ones might not work well on a different vehicle.

NGK makes great spark plugs, but they absolutely sucked in an old air-cooled VW Bug I had. I had a set that only lasted about 3,000 miles. Go figure.
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Old 07-12-2012, 11:14 PM   #14
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2000 Dakota SLT trouble


The long and short of it goes like this. Do you have any codes? If so, they may indicate the area to which you need to look. Because I do not know the history of the truck, the next step is to back to basics. When was the last time it was tuned up? (A real tune-up) What is the fuel pressure. Is the air filter clean, can it breathe properly. If there is no indication of codes then why be looking at electronic components. ECM's are pretty smart and will basically tell you when one of the components is failing. Go back to basics. Or go to a dealer. Good luck

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