2nd Feb 2010, 10:10

I have bought a 2002 Caravan (3.8L) SE, and after replacing the alternator and battery.. along with resistor for A/C fan blower, I have noticed a plastic burning smell.. and my navigation with temp quick working.. and now my ABS light came one this morning on my way to work.. Could any one help.. Don't know much about Dodge.. but can fix it if I know what it is.

14th Feb 2010, 18:04

We are the original owners of a 2002 Dodge Caravan. This is our first North American vehicle we have ever owned. Knowing the problems these vehicles have, we followed the manufacturer's recommendations on keeping up with all services, especially the transmission. And guess what; our transmission is giving us problems now at 123km. After doing some research, this problem still exists even with the newer models. My lesson learned from this would...Never buy a North American, only lease, because the warranty will give you peace of mind as long as you are driving the vehicle.

5th Jul 2010, 11:44

My friend uses an 02 Caravan as his work vehicle. He has used it since new (8 miles), and now has nearly 200k miles, with only services to the brakes and other maintenance items.

Chew on that.

3rd Oct 2010, 12:35

I own a 2002 Caravan. This is the second one. To my surprise they have been very reliable. The first one I had for 4 years with no problems at all, other than the passenger window regulator went out and the transmission computer went bad.

Many people think it's the transmissions, but it is the transmission computer mounted on the front, which is a PITA to change, but I did it carefully, that cost $125 and fixed the shifting issue.

This current one, I believe the alternator makes a rattling noise when you shut off the engine. Used a stethoscope to track down the noise, and it is coming from the alternator. So I am going to replace it this week.

Also the front end has a bumpy rattling in the suspension; I think the sway bar bushings are toast. I am happy with the van and its reliability, and am looking forward to my 3rd Dodge Grand Caravan 2005.

21st Nov 2010, 23:55

Had a 98 Caravan just over a year until the transmission overheated, and we got rid of it. It's a pleasant van, but has a checkered reliability record.

The best minivan ever made is the Toyota Previa 91 - 97. I've had 2, and they are very dependable vans. Other Japanese vans were not as good, the Odyssey has had transmission problems, and the early Sienna had engine sludge build up.

8th Jul 2011, 11:50

Hi, I just bought the same vehicle used, and encountered the brake light & burning smell near the end of a 5 hour drive home in it. Please let me know if you've solved your problem, or learned anything about it since the original post?