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Old 04-07-2010, 01:40 PM   #1
confused81
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Question 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Hi, I appologize in advance, as this is going to be a long post. We purchased this van about 6 weeks ago. We got a good deal and knew it needed some work, just didnt think this much was wrong.

First, is the power door problem. When the button is pushed to open the passenger power door, you can hear the latch (try to) open and then a lot of grinding and clicking. When closing all you hear is the latch noise and then nothing. When the door is open, my husband has reached under the door and gave the cable a "boost" while I hit the button and it closes right on cue. So, am not sure where to go from here.

Second, I have a vibration noise coming from somewhere in the belt line. We replaced the power steering pump and the belt (at the same time). That is when it started making the vibrating noise. This occurs at idle with the A/C on or when I am sitting still with the van in drive... so when the motor is under a load. We thought it was the belt tensioner/idler arm assembly, so we replaced the whole thing, with no results.

Third and last, I have a clunking noise coming from the front end (tire areas). To start of with, my steering started binding up on me, so we replaced the rack and pinion, inner and outer tie rod ends (solved that problem) but still had clunking noises so we replaced the swaybar links and bushings it helped with some noises, but clunking is still there. This noise happens when sitting still and turning the steering from left to right and when driving at low speeds over slightly rough terrain such as rough roads and my yard, going straight or turning. It (to me) doesnt sound like CV Joints, as its not a clicking... more like a deeper clunking. I at this moment can not remember if we have replaced anything else.

If you have any insight or experience as to what these problems are, please help me, as my husband is getting frustrated with the guess work and is trying to tell me these noises might be normal. I do like the van and ALL the options it has and don't want it to turn into a regret, as these noises are bothersome to me.

Thank you

Last edited by confused81; 04-07-2010 at 03:27 PM.
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Old 04-08-2010, 06:31 PM   #2
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

I haven't, as of right now, had any replies to my post, so I had to do some very heavy researching.
My problem with the power door was, we took the motor and latch assembly out of the door, and took it all completely apart. The inside parts of the latch were binding, so we sprayed some grease in it... suprisingly after a few minutes of wiggling everything around it free'd itself loose... now just have to fix the broken wire issue.
The problem with the vibration noise we found to be the bearings in the alt. We will see if we can spray some grease in there too, but if it doesn't work then we will, of course, have to purchase a new alt. at $170.00.
Last but, of course, not least... the clunking noise in the front end. After researching this all day today, I had my husband get under the van while I turned the steering wheel. It turns out to be a common problem. The strut mounts have to be replaced. Those are $42 each. So, over all, it could cost just over $250.00 to fix all my problems.
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:08 PM   #3
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Do you have a electrical repair shop that does starter's, alternator in your area?? I would have them check it out and replace the bearings and brushes. This route should be alot cheaper than a rebuilt or new from parts store and be just as good.
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Old 04-18-2010, 09:20 AM   #4
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

I wanted to elaborate on what you've already found yourself. I have a 2001 T&C. I had the alternator replaced a year ago when the bearings when out. The clunking noise I've dealt with 2-3 times. It was generally the sway bar bushings (little rubber mounts). I also had to replace the stabilizer bars. They wore out and were part of the problem. I'm not sure what caused what to wear out, but they were loose. My passenger door has not worked for years. It was worked on under warranty, but still won't open or close properly. I've heard of people taking it apart, but generally with mixed results.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:04 AM   #5
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Yes, I am posting again as the strut mounts have NOT taken care of all the clunking noises on the front end of this POS!!! I am really becoming annoyed by all the run around we are having and getting with this van. I am still having all the other problems as well. NOTHING has been fixed, even with all the time and effort we have put into this thing.

The power door issue resolved itself for well about 2 - 3 weeks, but now that is back to its old self.

The vibrating noise is still there... we haven't replaced the alt. since it is still working just fine and it is so very expensive to just guess that is where the noise is coming from. Please see above posts and help me if you know the problem to this.

We did replace the strut mounts to no avail. It was binding up and they did need to be replaced, but under regular driving conditions, I still have the clunking noise over bumpy roads.

Please help!!! I am very desperate to get this resolved and have a decent family vehicle. If it doesn't get fixed soon, I am afraid I will list it for sale on the internet and be right back to riding 6 deep in my 03 Silverado Ext Cab... which by the way... has NO PROBLEMS AT ALL. I love my Chevy!!! It has been absolutely the best vehicle I have ever owned.

Any insight or comments are welcome... PLEASE!!! And no, I do not have full coverage, I guess that is my second mistake right? First being, buying this POS. LOL.
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Old 05-02-2010, 03:41 PM   #6
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Did you replace the sway bar bushings? I've replaced these twice on my 01 T&C. It is the primary cause of the clunk you hear every time you hit a bump. I've replace the sway bar arms (right behind the wheels) once or twice too. They are fairly cheap. The rubber is split so you can fit them around the arm. You have to remove the metal retaining clip that hold them in place. I think one end just hooks in and the other has a bolt. It's much easier if you use some non-petroleum based grease to make things slide. The are directional so make sure the correct side is pointing to the rear of the vehicle.
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Old 05-02-2010, 04:38 PM   #7
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Just for clarity for all: http://www.ricksfreeautorepairadvice...nks-and-thumps

As for the "vibration noise" have you used a mechanics stethoscope to track it down? $15 at a parts store or you have a free one waiting for you in the back yard - a length of garden hose cupped to your ear. USE EXTREME CARE AROUND THOSE MOVING PARTS.
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Old 05-02-2010, 05:11 PM   #8
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

RIP has an excellent link. It's exactly what solved my clunking problem. Also, good advice on the vibration problem. I used a small pipe on my alternator to figure out that the bearings had gone bad in it.
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Old 05-11-2010, 07:28 AM   #9
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by RIP View Post
Just for clarity for all: http://www.ricksfreeautorepairadvice...nks-and-thumps

As for the "vibration noise" have you used a mechanics stethoscope to track it down? $15 at a parts store or you have a free one waiting for you in the back yard - a length of garden hose cupped to your ear. USE EXTREME CARE AROUND THOSE MOVING PARTS.
thank you for the link,my wifes van is making the clunking noise really bad.
glad i found this post.
thanks again
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Old 05-24-2010, 01:32 PM   #10
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Sound when you are turning the wheels at stop or low speeds, especially like a groaning sound, can be a bad ball joint (or two). While car is parked and off, try pushing down on one side and then the other, ball joints will make noise if bad.

I got a 2001 Grand EX with 167000 mi. Just R&R'd a sway bar link (bad one actually broke in two) and bushings. I need to replace the other sway bar link as well. Didn't think the car would last this long so now I need to plan on struts and ball joints this summer.

Good luck to you.
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Old 05-24-2010, 01:40 PM   #11
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

FYI, Never heard of alternator bearings being "OK" with just a bit of grease. Once they start going then you count the days until failure. Money spent on a new (or rebuilt, or if you are so inclined, get a rebuild kit $40 to $50 and it includes new bearings) alternator beats a failed alternator and possible under hood fire. I know this from experience.
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Old 08-06-2010, 10:11 PM   #12
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

I had the same issue with my 2001. It is probably the lower control arm. Cost me 175 at autozone. Their website will tell you how to change it. It took me about 2 hours with some help.
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Old 08-06-2010, 10:19 PM   #13
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Re: 02 Town and Country Lmt, FWD - Clunking from front end and power door problems

Have your lower control arm checked. More importantly the rear contol arm bushing. Dont let your mechanic sell you a new ball joint it cmes with the cotrol arm. About $175 at the parts sore.
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