Very reliable Durango - Dakota Durango Forum
Gen I Durangos 1998-2003 Durango-Specific Questions

 
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post #1 of 4 Old 04-08-2019, 05:42 AM Thread Starter
Dodgeowner
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Very reliable Durango

Hello, I own a 2003 Dodge Durango with 289k and the 4.7L original engine and transmission! Only left me stranded once on the highway when the original fuel pump took a crap (200k ish)
So far we have replaced the water pump, radiator, ignition coils, map sensor, upper and lower rad hoses, thermostat, struts, air temperature sensor. Left front wheel bearing x2, left front window regulator x2. Recently did a compression test and all results are fairly good for the mileage.
Cyl#1 145psi cyl#2 160 cyl#3 140 cyl#4 165 cyl#5 155 cyl#6 150 cyl#7 160 cyl#8 150 these readings we're done when the engine was warm.
I think for a engine with 289k with that type of compression is pretty decent right? Well it does prove if you used mainly synthetic oil for most of the engines life it will last longer? I have been hearing for awhile now a rattle on start up during cold weather is that the timing chain (the rattle goes away after it running for a few seconds) I'm going to need to replace the oil pan soon as it's rusting decently. I have a few questions the transmission fluid has been changed once at 100k by the dealer. I have read that changing transmission fluid could cause more havoc than it's worse is this true? The fluid is getting pretty dark. The engine does leak oil from the front of the engine. I usually go through about 1qt every 800+ miles roughly. I'm thinking of doing an oil analysis is it worth it?. Also how long do these transmissions in the gen 1 Durango's last?
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post #2 of 4 Old 04-08-2019, 10:59 PM
WestCoastKevin
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Vehicle: 2002 Durango SLT+ 4.7L V8
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Hi,
The rattle could be the timing chains.
It could also be valve lifters.


Timing Guides/Tensioners:
The timing chain guides have plastic. (Nylon or Phenolic) surfaces. They could be pretty worn and need replacement.
Additionally, If the oil pressure is lower, the ratcheting pawls might be a bit slow to extend and push against the chain.

Oil Pressure:
Did you take oil pressure readings?
They would be good numbers.
You will want to put a mechanical gauge on it and watch it from a cold start and from a hot start.

Just plain old engine wear:
The oil pump might be have enough wear to be contributing to the problem.
At those miles, you might need to go up in the viscosity range to keep the oil pressure up.
5w-30, and even 10w-30 (Factory recommended) might be too thin at this point in the engine's life.
You might want to go to a 15w40 or straight to a 20w50. A tired oil pump will do better with oil in those ranges.


Transmission Fluid:
You are long overdue to change the fluid and both filters. You should do it. (No need to flush or anything like that.)

Leak from front:
Change the timing cover seal. Put new timing chain guides on it while you are there (If it needs them).

Oil pan:
I guess if it needs to be replaced... It needs to be replaced. There is so much stuff that needs to come off on a 4WD to do this. I am sure it is an expensive job.

Good luck with it.

Member of the engine rebuild club, HO Cams, 68mm TB by Dwight, SuperChips, Bilstein shocks, 5-45rfe Jeep TCM mod. ... and I clean the windows pretty often.
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post #3 of 4 Old 04-12-2019, 08:25 PM
Rusty Boltz
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My Dakota 4.7 has 198k on it. No engine or driveline problems ever. Still has the original belt and hoses on it. A wheel sensor was replaced under warranty, and I've had some minor A/C work done; both front window regulators and an outer tie rod. I've had regular maintenance done (tires, brakes, tune-ups, fluid changes {non-synthetic}). I'm very pleased with this truck.

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'02 Dakota
4.7 L
Automatic
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post #4 of 4 Old 04-22-2019, 11:29 PM
Dodgeballs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dodgeowner View Post
Hello, I own a 2003 Dodge Durango with 289k and the 4.7L original engine and transmission! Only left me stranded once on the highway when the original fuel pump took a crap (200k ish)
So far we have replaced the water pump, radiator, ignition coils, map sensor, upper and lower rad hoses, thermostat, struts, air temperature sensor. Left front wheel bearing x2, left front window regulator x2. Recently did a compression test and all results are fairly good for the mileage.
Cyl#1 145psi cyl#2 160 cyl#3 140 cyl#4 165 cyl#5 155 cyl#6 150 cyl#7 160 cyl#8 150 these readings we're done when the engine was warm.
I think for a engine with 289k with that type of compression is pretty decent right? Well it does prove if you used mainly synthetic oil for most of the engines life it will last longer? I have been hearing for awhile now a rattle on start up during cold weather is that the timing chain (the rattle goes away after it running for a few seconds) I'm going to need to replace the oil pan soon as it's rusting decently. I have a few questions the transmission fluid has been changed once at 100k by the dealer. I have read that changing transmission fluid could cause more havoc than it's worse is this true? The fluid is getting pretty dark. The engine does leak oil from the front of the engine. I usually go through about 1qt every 800+ miles roughly. I'm thinking of doing an oil analysis is it worth it?. Also how long do these transmissions in the gen 1 Durango's last?
I've got 301K miles on my Dakota. Original engine and transmission and running flawlessly. It's my daily driver and I don't own another vehicle. I run 0W-20 full synthetic oil and changes are every 7.5K.

Don't wait to replace your ATF. I installed an aftermarket drain plug in the tranny and I perform single drains every 25K. I've changed the tranny filters a few times since owning the truck.

I've had the cold startup rattle that goes away quickly for as long as I can remember. It's the hydraulic lifters rattling till they fill with oil. Nothing to worry about, but it's one of the reasons why I run 0W.

As a sign of confidence in my truck, I just bought new wheels and tires, my biggest expenditure ever on it. LOL... Wheels not pictured here. I'm going to put the OEM wheels up for sale soon. Nothing wrong with them at all, just changing the look.


2003 Dakota SLT
Quad Cab 4.7L Auto 2WD
270K

Last edited by Dodgeballs; 04-23-2019 at 01:55 AM.
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