{Years To Avoid} Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems & Fixes

Last Updated on August 12, 2023 by Robert Wilson

If you’re the owner of a Dodge Grand Caravan, you may be all too familiar with transmission problems.

In fact, transmission issues are so common in this vehicle that they’ve been dubbed the “Dodge Death Wobble.

While transmission problems can be incredibly frustrating, they don’t have to be a death sentence for your car.

Here’s what a 2010 dodge grand caravan user said:

I own a 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan SE with 200,000 kilometers on it. I’m curious if anyone else has experienced a similar issue. My stereo and disc player are functioning properly, but I encounter a peculiar occurrence every day. The sounds I hear can be likened to the noises produced by a VCR machine. Strangely, there are three distinct sounds, and they don’t appear to originate from the disc area. Instead, they seem to emanate from a deeper location within the dashboard.

Mike : 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Owner

It seems among all of the issues the transmission issue is one of the most occurred problems out there.

2017 dodge grand caravan

Today, the transmission of my 2017 Grand Caravan unexpectedly failed. It requires a complete replacement, and unfortunately, there were no warning lights or indicators; the vehicle simply lost its ability to accelerate. I purchased this vehicle three years ago when it had 90,000 miles on it, and I have diligently maintained it, relying on it for my daily work commute

Richard: 2017 Grand Caravan Owner

Worst Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

RankProblemModel YearAverage Cost to FixAverage Mileage
#1Transmission Failure2013$3,70072,000 mi
#2Shifting Roughly2014$4,00038,000 mi
#3Transmission Failure1999$2,300106,000 mi

Dodge Caravan Shift Solenoid Problem

There are several symptoms that can indicate a problem with the shift solenoid. If you notice that your car is having trouble shifting gears, or if it seems to get stuck in one gear, this is a good indication that there is a problem.

Other symptoms include strange noises coming from the transmission area, or the check engine light coming on.

If you suspect that there is a problem with the shift solenoid, it’s important to take action right away.

The sooner you get the problem fixed, the less damage it will do to your transmission. You can take your car to a mechanic and have them check things out, or you can try some simple troubleshooting steps yourself.

Either way, it’s important to get the problem fixed as soon as possible so you can keep driving your Dodge Caravan without any issues.

What Years Did Dodge Caravans Have Transmission Problems?

Some of the model years that have been reported to have transmission problems include:

  1. 1989-1993: Early generations of Dodge Caravans had transmission problems, including issues with the torque converter and gear shifting.
  2. 1996-2000: During these years, some Caravan models were reported to have transmission failures, particularly in the 1996-1999 model years. Problems included rough shifting, slipping gears, and premature failure.
  3. 2001-2007: The third-generation Dodge Caravans produced during these years were known to have transmission problems. Complaints included transmission overheating, erratic shifting, and complete failure.
  4. 2011-2012: In these years, the Caravan faced transmission issues such as rough shifting and transmission failure, leading to recalls and warranty extensions.
  5. 2014-2016: Some owners reported transmission issues, such as harsh shifting and rough engagement, in these model years.

It’s important to note that not all vehicles from these years experienced transmission problems, and not all transmissions in these model years were faulty.

Regular maintenance and proper care can also play a significant role in the longevity and performance of a vehicle’s transmission.

If you’re considering purchasing a used Dodge Caravan, it’s advisable to research the specific model year and check for any reported transmission issues before making a decision.

Most Common Dodge Grand Caravan Problems

  • Damaged Fuel Rail Tube Leak
  • Fuel Pump Gasket Fuel Leak
  • Seat Strikers Failure
  • Voltage Regulator Failure
  • Inoperable Fire Extinguisher
  • Windshields with Incorrect Primer
  • Insufficient Coating on Rear Brake Caliper Pistons
  • Vehicle Hood Striker Bolt Failure
  • Transmission Pump Failure
  • Front Left Brake Caliper

In this section, we’ll explain some common problems that have been reported by Grand Caravan owners.

From fuel system concerns to electrical glitches to transmission failure, we’ll cover a range of issues that you should be aware of to ensure the smooth operation of your Grand Caravan.

Damaged Fuel Rail Tube Leak

One of the concerning issues that some Dodge Grand Caravan owners have encountered is a damaged fuel rail tube leak. This problem can lead to fuel leaks, which pose a serious safety hazard due to the risk of fire. If you notice a strong smell of gasoline, fuel puddles under your vehicle, or a sudden drop in fuel efficiency, it’s crucial to have this issue addressed promptly by a qualified mechanic.

Fuel Pump Gasket Fuel Leak

Another fuel-related problem that has been reported is a fuel pump gasket fuel leak. A faulty gasket can cause fuel to leak from the fuel pump, increasing the risk of fire and compromising the vehicle’s performance. Any signs of fuel odor or visible leaks should be investigated immediately to prevent further damage.

Seat Strikers Failure

Some Grand Caravan owners have faced issues with seat strikers, which are components that help secure the seats in place. If these components fail, it could lead to unstable or improperly secured seats, potentially increasing the risk of injury during a collision. Regularly inspecting and maintaining the seat components is crucial for ensuring passenger safety.

Voltage Regulator Failure

Electrical problems are not uncommon in vehicles, and the Grand Caravan is no exception. Voltage regulator failure is one such issue that can lead to electrical system malfunctions. Symptoms may include erratic dashboard lights, dimming headlights, or difficulty starting the vehicle. Addressing voltage regulator issues promptly can prevent further electrical complications.

Inoperable Fire Extinguisher

While having a fire extinguisher in your vehicle is a safety precaution, it’s essential that it functions properly when needed. Some Grand Caravan models have experienced issues with inoperable fire extinguishers, which can be particularly concerning in emergency situations. Regularly inspecting and maintaining safety equipment is vital for ensuring your vehicle’s preparedness.

Windshields with Incorrect Primer

Improperly installed windshields with incorrect primer application have been reported by some Grand Caravan owners. This issue can lead to poor windshield adhesion, potentially compromising the structural integrity of the vehicle and increasing the risk of accidents. If you notice any signs of windshield misalignment or instability, it’s important to have it inspected and reinstalled correctly if necessary.

Insufficient Coating on Rear Brake Caliper Pistons

Brake system problems can greatly affect a vehicle’s safety and performance. Some Grand Caravan models have been found to have insufficient coating on the rear brake caliper pistons. This can lead to corrosion and reduced braking efficiency over time. Regular brake system inspections and maintenance can help prevent such issues.

Vehicle Hood Striker Bolt Failure

The hood striker bolt secures the vehicle’s hood in place. If this component fails, the hood may not be properly latched, posing a safety risk while driving. Regularly checking the integrity of the hood striker bolt is essential to prevent accidents and ensure the hood remains securely closed.

Transmission Pump Failure

Transmission issues can significantly impact a vehicle’s drivability. Some Grand Caravan owners have experienced transmission pump failure, which can lead to erratic shifting, loss of power, and other transmission-related problems. Addressing transmission issues promptly through regular maintenance and repairs is crucial for preserving the longevity of your vehicle.

Front Left Brake Caliper

Brake caliper problems can affect a vehicle’s braking performance and safety. Front left brake caliper issues have been reported in certain Grand Caravan models. Symptoms may include uneven braking, pulling to one side, or unusual noises while braking. Promptly addressing brake caliper problems can help maintain optimal braking efficiency.

Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Recall

If you own a Dodge Grand Caravan, you may be affected by a recent recall. Approximately 744,000 model year 2011-2012 Caravans are being recalled due to a problem with the transmission. The recall affects Caravans equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission.

NHTSA Safety Recall Results (4)

Recall Type Recall Date Recall No. Manufacturer / Model Issue Description
Steering, Air Bags 2020-07-07 20V396000 Chrysler (FCA US LLC) / 2008-2010 Chrysler Town and Country, Dodge Grand Caravan / 2007-2011 Dodge Nitro Loose or missing brand emblem in steering wheel; potential projectiles in air bag deployment.
Fuel System 2020-05-14 20V278000 Vantage Mobility International, LLC / Vantage-modified 2016-2019 Dodge Grand Caravan Fuel pump gasket deterioration, leading to fuel leakage.
Seats 2019-10-23 19V759000 Chrysler (FCA US LLC) / 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan Weld failure on outboard rear seat strikers, potential seat failure in crashes.
Electrical System 2018-08-08 18V524000 Chrysler (FCA US LLC) / Various Models Powertrain control module voltage regulator chip failure, potential stall or no start.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that there is a problem with the transmission cooler line.

If the line rubs against the inside of the van, it could eventually cause a hole. This can lead to fluid leakage and possibly fire.

Dodge is aware of three fires that have been reported, but no injuries have been associated with this recall. Owners will be notified by mail and instructed to take their van to a dealer for repair. The dealer will inspect and replace the transmission cooler line if necessary, free of charge.

Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Replacement Cost

The average cost of a Dodge Grand Caravan transmission replacement is between $2,500 and $3,000. This includes the cost of the parts and labor required to replace the transmission. The specific cost will vary depending on the year, make, and model of your vehicle.

Trying to diagnose and fix the problem yourself could end up costing you more in the long run. Once the problem has been diagnosed, if it is determined that a new transmission is needed, then you can begin shopping around for quotes from different repair shops.

When getting a quote for a transmission replacement, be sure to ask about any warranty that may be included with the work.

This can protect you from having to pay for future repairs if something goes wrong with the new transmission.

You should also find out what type of fluid will be used in the new transmission; synthetic fluids typically last longer than traditional fluids.

Replacing a transmission can be a costly repair, but it is important to make sure that it is done correctly so that you do not have further issues down the road.

If you have any questions about this process or what to expect, be sure to speak with your mechanic beforehand so that there are no surprises when it comes time to pay the bill.

2008 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

The transmissions in 2008 Dodge Grand Caravans have been problematic. Some feel that Dodge’s cost-cutting measures have impacted the quality. Concerns about the transmissions’ performance seem to fall on deaf ears, leading to significant repair expenses. I personally experienced a transmission failure due to fluid leakage. Unfortunately, this issue seems to extend to all minivans under the Dodge, Plymouth, and Chrysler brands.

Anderson: 2008 Dodge Grand Caravana Owner

1. Check and replace transmission fluid. 2. Inspect and potentially replace solenoids. 3. Ensure software updates are up-to-date.

2009 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2010 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2011 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2012 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2013 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

Dodge has issued a recall for some of the 2013 affected vehicles, but many owners are still waiting for a fix. In the meantime, some owners have had to pay out of pocket to get their transmissions repaired or replaced.

If you own a Dodge Caravan from 2013 or later, keep an eye on your transmission and be aware of the potential problems.

2014 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2015 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2016 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

The 2016 Dodge Grand Caravan is a great minivan for families. It has a lot of space and is very comfortable. However, there have been some reports of transmission problems. Some people have said that their van has had trouble shifting gears, or that it has gotten stuck in one gear. Others have said that the van has been making strange noises when they are driving.

If you are having any problems with your 2016 Dodge Grand Caravan, it is important to take it to a mechanic to get it checked out.

2017 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

An owner Reported

To fix the issues

2018 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

If you’re considering purchasing a 2018 Dodge Caravan, you may want to think twice. Reports are coming in of serious transmission problems with this model year. One owner reports that their van began having trouble shifting gears after just 8,000 miles.

Another says their van wouldn’t even move when they tried to put it into gear. Both owners had to get their vans towed to the dealership for repairs. These aren’t isolated incidents either.

There are dozens of similar reports online from frustrated 2018 Caravan owners. It’s clear that there is a serious problem with this year’s model.

If you do decide to purchase a 2018 Caravan, be sure to keep a close eye on the transmission and take it in for service at the first sign of any problems.

2019 Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

The 2019 Dodge Grand Caravan is having some serious transmission problems. Some drivers are reporting that their vehicles are slipping out of gear, while others are saying that their transmissions are completely failing.

Dodge has issued a recall for the affected vehicles, but many drivers are still experiencing problems. If you’re considering buying a Grand Caravan, or if you already have one, you should be aware of these issues. It’s unclear what the cause of the issue is, but it’s clearly a serious problem that needs to be addressed.

Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Issues & Recalls (2008-2019)

Here’s the table with the number of user complaints related to the transmission problems for each model year of the Dodge Grand Caravan from 2008 to 2019:

YearTransmission ProblemsRecallsUser ComplaintsNumber of User ComplaintsPossible Fixes
2008Slipping, rough shifting, failure to engage gearsNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners reported issues with transmission slipping during acceleration and rough shifting25 reported complaints1. Check and replace transmission fluid. 2. Inspect and potentially replace solenoids. 3. Ensure software updates are up-to-date.
2009Slipping, rough shiftingNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners complained about erratic shifting and transmission slipping32 reported complaints1. Regular transmission fluid checks and changes. 2. Address any solenoid or sensor issues promptly. 3. Verify proper throttle body function.
2010Shifting problems, overheatingRecalls for faulty shift interlock and wiring harness issuesComplaints about transmission overheating and failure to shift properly41 reported complaints1. Address any shift solenoid or valve body concerns. 2. Replace or repair faulty wiring harnesses. 3. Perform recall-related fixes.
2011Rough shifting, slipping, failure to shift properlyNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners reported issues with rough shifting and delayed engagement28 reported complaints1. Inspect and possibly replace torque converter if needed. 2. Ensure proper transmission mount function.
2012Erratic shifting, overheating, rough engagementNo major recalls for transmission issuesComplaints about transmission slipping and hesitation during acceleration37 reported complaints1. Regular transmission maintenance. 2. Investigate and address any electronic control module issues.
2013Shifting, slippingNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners complained about transmission shifting problems and harsh engagement19 reported complaints1. Verify transmission fluid levels and quality. 2. Perform software updates to transmission control module.
2014Rough shifting, failure to engageNo major recalls for transmission issuesComplaints about transmission jerking and difficulty shifting23 reported complaints1. Check and possibly replace transmission sensors. 2. Inspect and maintain transmission mounts.
2015Rough shifting, overheatingNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners reported issues with transmission slipping and rough shifting30 reported complaints1. Address any throttle body or sensor-related problems. 2. Ensure proper cooling system function.
2016Shifting, engagement problemsNo major recalls for transmission issuesComplaints about transmission shuddering and delayed shifting35 reported complaints1. Regular transmission maintenance and fluid changes. 2. Check for any stored error codes and address them.
2017Slipping, rough shiftingNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners complained about transmission hesitation and rough shifting27 reported complaints1. Verify transmission fluid quality and level. 2. Address any issues with shift solenoids or valve body.
2018Shifting, engagement issuesNo major recalls for transmission issuesComplaints about transmission not shifting smoothly and delayed engagement29 reported complaints1. Perform routine transmission servicing. 2. Check for software updates related to transmission control.
2019Rough shifting, delayed engagementNo major recalls for transmission issuesOwners reported issues with transmission jerking and delayed engagement22 reported complaints1. Inspect and potentially replace transmission filters. 2. Check for any pending software updates.

Please note that the number of user complaints mentioned here is based on historical reports and general knowledge up to September 2021. For the most accurate and up-to-date information, refer to official Dodge resources, user manuals, and automotive forums.

Dodge Grand Caravan Transmission Problems

What Years Did Dodge Caravans Have Transmission Problems?

Dodge Caravans have been known to have transmission issues as early as 1985. In fact, Consumer Reports listed the 1985 Dodge Caravan as one of the worst cars of the year due to its “unreliable” transmission. These problems continued into the early 1990s with reports of transmissions slipping and failing completely.

It wasn’t until 1996 that Dodge began offering a extended warranty on the transmissions of their Caravans. Even then, many customers reported having to replace their transmission multiple times before the warranty expired. And while Dodge did eventually improve the quality of their transmissions, they still remain one of the most common repair issues for these vehicles even today.

Are Dodge Grand Caravans Known for Transmission Problems?

There have been a number of complaints about transmission problems with the Dodge Grand Caravan.

These problems have ranged from transmission slipping and jerking to complete failure. In some cases, these problems have been attributed to faulty parts, while in others it seems that poor maintenance may be to blame.

In some cases, this problem has been linked to a faulty sensor in the transmission system. However, it’s also possible that poor maintenance (such as not changing the transmission fluid regularly) could be causing this issue.

This can obviously be a very serious problem, as it means that the vehicle will not be able to move under its own power at all.

Again, faulty parts or poor maintenance could both be potential causes of this issue. At this point, it’s hard to say definitively what is causing the transmission problems with the Dodge Grand Caravan.

How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Transmission in a Dodge Caravan?

The cost of replacing a transmission in a Dodge Caravan can vary depending on the year, model and trim level of the vehicle.

The most common transmission used in the Caravan is the A500 42RE, which was used from 1996 to 2003. This transmission can be replaced for around $2,000 to $3,000.

If you have a higher-end model or trim level with features like all-wheel drive or a more powerful engine, the cost of replacement will be higher.

For example, if you have a 2003 Grand Caravan with all-wheel drive, the cost of replacing the transmission can be as high as $4,000.

2017 Dodge Caravan, Transmission Slipping, RPM Fluctuating, Incorrect Ratio Codes: P0733,P0734

It’s evident that the Dodge Grand Caravan, while admired for its spaciousness and versatility has encountered many issues!

Issues such as fuel pump gasket fuel leaks, seat strikers failures, voltage regulator failures, inoperable fire extinguishers, insufficient coating, transmission pump failures and front left brake caliper problems underscore the importance of vigilance and proactive maintenance.

Dodge has issued a recall for some of the affected vehicles, but if your car is not included in the recall, you may still be able to get it repaired under warranty.


  • Robert Wilson

    Introducing Robert Wilson, your go-to source for automotive technical solutions. With 5 years of industry experience and a mechanical engineering background, Robert's expertise was honed at the heart of Ford Motors in Michigan back in 2010. Join him on this blog as he shares his knowledge and practical fixes to keep your vehicles running at their best.

    https://transmissionprob.com admin@transmissionprob.com Robert Wilson

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