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I would like to start discussions on helpful hints. If you know something that others may be interested in please let this be place to let us know. This may help some of you as it did me save money. If your "Check Engine" Light is on and you don't know why, you could take it to Chrysler Dealership and they would charge you $88.00 just to tell you why it is on. But if you won't to save money you could go to any Auto Zone or Advance Auto store and they can check it and give you a Print-Out of probable causes for free. You can then go through the list of 4 or so causes yourself and still come out cheaper. I hope this helps someone.

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Or if you can not make it to one of the parts stores you can do what is called the Key-Dance and read the code on the odometer screen, then look up the code on the link below.
I would like to give credit to harleyrider86 from the PTCrew web site for the write up below

ECU Error Codes :
Check Engine light comes on - should I freak out?? Not necessarily. A Check Engine light means the car’s computer has seen a sensor outside it’s normal range of signal. It could be a one time trigger or it could mean that something is actually wrong.

Check to see what the code is that the ECU is reporting triggered it.
Key Dance : (courtesy of Sugamer)
note : don't pause too long between clicks
1) Inset key and turn 2 clicks until the ignition is on but the starter does not crank
2) Turn key back all the way to the position you can remove the key
3) Turn the key 2 clicks again until the ignition is on but the starter does not crank
4) Turn key back all the way to the position you can remove the key
5) Turn the key 2 clicks again until the ignition is on but the starter does not crank and leave it there

The car will display any codes in the odometer screen. It will show "DONE" when all available codes are displayed and you will get a ding.

The entire procedure can be seen on this video courtesy of sakigt :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8fV2XXbhN0

Link to codes http://www.ptcrew.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=15560

Codes will actually clear themselves after 25 restarts, if the trigger is still not present. A quicker way is to reset the ECU.
Clearing the Codes :
1) Disconnect the battery’s negative cable
2) Step on the brake pedal of the car to discharge all stored current
3) Reconnect the battery

If the code is gone after clearing, then write it off as a one time trigger of a sensor. If the code is still present or returns a little later then the trigger is still present that is sending a warning to the ECU and it is time to start troubleshooting what is going on.
Here is a very helpful link for fixing you PT problems.
http://www.ptdoityourself.net/tl/tl_index1.html
I have also had a code PO442 "Evaporative system leak"
on 2 Pt's that I own, this was an easy fix..............tighten the gas
cap or replace it, due to poor cap seal.
Thanks! This is SO helpful, because mine has been doing this, yet nothing really seems to be wrong. I know sometimes it can be something as simple as the gas cap is loose, and I tightened it once, and the light went off, butnow it is on again. I will definitely run it by my Auto Zone and get it checked out!
The Fuel Filter is Inside the gas tank....
Absolutely correct...and for anyone reading this..that's why you should never run your fuel tank down really low. The fuel filter and fuel pump are at the bottom of the tank. The pump is cooled and lubricated by the fuel/gas itself. Running the tank really low could cause the pump to burn out.

Tim said:
Here is a very helpful link for fixing you PT problems.
http://www.ptdoityourself.net/tl/tl_index1.html
I have also had a code PO442 "Evaporative system leak"
on 2 Pt's that I own, this was an easy fix..............tighten the gas
cap or replace it, due to poor cap seal.
That key dance works. It took me several tries to get it right. I think you have to do it fast. Here is a better link page with All the codes; http://www.ptcruiserlinks.com/forum/turbo-performance/12415-error-c...

Oldcoach said:
Or if you can not make it to one of the parts stores you can do what is called the Key-Dance and read the code on the odometer screen, then look up the code on the link below.
I would like to give credit to harleyrider86 from the PTCrew web site for the write up below

ECU Error Codes :
Check Engine light comes on - should I freak out?? Not necessarily. A Check Engine light means the car’s computer has seen a sensor outside it’s normal range of signal. It could be a one time trigger or it could mean that something is actually wrong.

Check to see what the code is that the ECU is reporting triggered it.
Key Dance : (courtesy of Sugamer)
note : don't pause too long between clicks
1) Inset key and turn 2 clicks until the ignition is on but the starter does not crank
2) Turn key back all the way to the position you can remove the key
3) Turn the key 2 clicks again until the ignition is on but the starter does not crank
4) Turn key back all the way to the position you can remove the key
5) Turn the key 2 clicks again until the ignition is on but the starter does not crank and leave it there

The car will display any codes in the odometer screen. It will show "DONE" when all available codes are displayed and you will get a ding.

The entire procedure can be seen on this video courtesy of sakigt :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8fV2XXbhN0

Link to codes http://www.ptcrew.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=15560

Codes will actually clear themselves after 25 restarts, if the trigger is still not present. A quicker way is to reset the ECU.
Clearing the Codes :
1) Disconnect the battery’s negative cable
2) Step on the brake pedal of the car to discharge all stored current
3) Reconnect the battery

If the code is gone after clearing, then write it off as a one time trigger of a sensor. If the code is still present or returns a little later then the trigger is still present that is sending a warning to the ECU and it is time to start troubleshooting what is going on.
The fuel filter is not serviceable as a separate part. It's part of the fuel pump assembly. There's no way they changed a fuel filter and not the pump.



Gerry DC said:
The Fuel Filter is Inside the gas tank....
Absolutely correct...and for anyone reading this..that's why you should never run your fuel tank down really low. The fuel filter and fuel pump are at the bottom of the tank. The pump is cooled and lubricated by the fuel/gas itself. Running the tank really low could cause the pump to burn out.

Tim said:
Here is a very helpful link for fixing you PT problems.
http://www.ptdoityourself.net/tl/tl_index1.html
I have also had a code PO442 "Evaporative system leak"
on 2 Pt's that I own, this was an easy fix..............tighten the gas
cap or replace it, due to poor cap seal.
Okay, my code is P0304 misfire in #4. I changed the plug but light is still on. any suggestions? anyone?

Gerry DC said:
The fuel filter is not serviceable as a separate part. It's part of the fuel pump assembly. There's no way they changed a fuel filter and not the pump.



Gerry DC said:
The Fuel Filter is Inside the gas tank....
Absolutely correct...and for anyone reading this..that's why you should never run your fuel tank down really low. The fuel filter and fuel pump are at the bottom of the tank. The pump is cooled and lubricated by the fuel/gas itself. Running the tank really low could cause the pump to burn out.

Tim said:
Here is a very helpful link for fixing you PT problems.
http://www.ptdoityourself.net/tl/tl_index1.html
I have also had a code PO442 "Evaporative system leak"
on 2 Pt's that I own, this was an easy fix..............tighten the gas
cap or replace it, due to poor cap seal.
Permalink Reply by Gerry DC 47 minutes ago
Okay, my code is P0304 misfire in #4. I changed the plug but light is still on. any suggestions? anyone?


I have a 2001 PT and am experiencing a very rough idle. I ran the vehicle self-tests and received a P0304 fault code - "misfire on cylinder # 4." What could be the cause, possibly the ignition coil? Thanks. - William, from Georgia.

The ignition coil fires both cylinder #4 and #2 from the same winding. It's not likely to be the coil. Look at the plug and wire. Also inspect for oil or coolant in the cylinder. You can reach that plug without removing the intake manifold
Ha ha ha ha ha- Ain't laughing at you, Gerry...just the fact that I don't know what city/state you reside in, but in my city, I took it directly to the private lot that I purchased the vehicle in (no, not some giant dealership, I called them up and they'd charge an arm and a leg), and they tested it for free, and we found out that it was simply the aftermarket "locking" gas cap that I had purchased shortly before the check engine light came on, which gave the computer a vapor leak reading. It would lock alright, but then it would spin like a record as well, instead of locking firmly in place like the original gas cap (which thankfully I had saved). Now, what was so funny was that the chief mechanic who tested it had advised me that he actually had several customers from the same pvt dealership come to him after going to the local Autozone that either didn't know where to plug in the diagnostic tool, or had given them some off the wall, false reading and they had decided to take it elsewhere for a second opinion. It appears that at least in that Autozone, they hire nothing but young boys fresh outa high school who are still learning on customer's vehicles- in otherwords, they are still green around the gills.
Noel
I hear that! But here in North Carolina the reading was done correct because it gave the same code doing the "Key Dance" trick and the code was for a #4 misfire. I thought about the gas cap but it seems fine. Maybe i will try that next.

Noel Mauricio said:
Ha ha ha ha ha- Ain't laughing at you, Gerry...just the fact that I don't know what city/state you reside in, but in my city, I took it directly to the private lot that I purchased the vehicle in (no, not some giant dealership, I called them up and they'd charge an arm and a leg), and they tested it for free, and we found out that it was simply the aftermarket "locking" gas cap that I had purchased shortly before the check engine light came on, which gave the computer a vapor leak reading. It would lock alright, but then it would spin like a record as well, instead of locking firmly in place like the original gas cap (which thankfully I had saved). Now, what was so funny was that the chief mechanic who tested it had advised me that he actually had several customers from the same pvt dealership come to him after going to the local Autozone that either didn't know where to plug in the diagnostic tool, or had given them some off the wall, false reading and they had decided to take it elsewhere for a second opinion. It appears that at least in that Autozone, they hire nothing but young boys fresh outa high school who are still learning on customer's vehicles- in otherwords, they are still green around the gills.
Noel
Thanks for the tip. When I bought my PT back in 2001 I got free lifetime oil changes every 3000 miles. After the first one I never went back. There was oil on my steering wheel, drivers seat and floor mats. I pointed this out to the manager before departing the dealership and he appoligized and scolded the mechanic in front of myself and my wife. I probably felt worse than the "grease monkey" that soiled my car, and never have returned there. I have my own mechanic now who does all the service on my cars. $30 every 3000 miles is well worth not ever having to go back and face that mechanic who was humiliated at my expense.
Attached are the Diagnostic codes for the 2001 PT Cruiser, and I do not think they have changed. It is in PDF format, so if you open the file with Adobe Acrobat, you can save a copy to your computer and have everything you need to diagnose your error codes when you complete the "key dance".


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