02 Caravan evap fuel error (small) - DodgeTalk : Dodge Car Forums, Dodge Truck Forums and Ram Forums
 
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#1 Old 05-29-2008, 03:42 AM
toronado455
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02 Caravan evap fuel error (small)

Check engine light on my 2002 Grand Caravan keeps coming on. My mechanic says the code is the evaporative fuel system small leak. I tried a new gas cap but the light came back on again.

I'm going to have to take it to the dealer because they have the expensive gizmo (whatever it's called) that injects the colored diagnostic gas into the system to check for leaks.

I just got my DMV (California) renewal in the mail and, yep, I now need to get it smogged for the first time. Rats!

I really don't want to go to the dealer.

My mechanic says they now take the fuel cap off and put an instrument in there to detect leaks as part of the smog test. But I wonder if the leak is small enough that it would go undetected.

If I reset the light and then go right away to get it smogged (it takes about a week for the light to come back on again after resetting), what are the chances I will pass?
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#2 Old 05-29-2008, 06:34 AM
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Chrysler seems to have a real problem with hoses of all types, even ones that aren't under high pressure like the evaporative hoses. Under the driver's seat is the cannister and solenoid. Look carefully under there and you may find the culprit. Another place to look is in back of the air cleaner where there is a line where a hard line connects to a rubber line. Push those together and seal the joint.

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#3 Old 05-30-2008, 10:08 AM
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you will not be able to clear the light then go right to the smog test because they hook up to your computer and it will tell them that it was just reset!

on the 02's the most common "small leak" is all the rubber evap hoses under the air cleaner box and intake hose.

Just unbolt the airbox and take the intake hose off and look down you will see the evap hoses. there is a diagram under the hood. Just simply replace all of the rubber hoses with fuel line hose from the parts store.

the reason it takes a week for the cel to come back on is that the test is run randomly by the computer.

lastly, the smoke test should not cost that much at the stealer. the only thing is they try to fix these small leaks with out using the smoke test and still charge you for it so make sure you lean on them to use it. I caught my dealer not using it and they had to pay for three return trips that I wouldn't pay for because they didn't perform the test they said they did!
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#4 Old 05-30-2008, 10:28 AM
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Look for the little green cap toward the front passenger side of the engine bay. Check the hoses attached to that (be sure to peel back the plastic covering.) Many people, myself included, had an obviously cracked hose at this location (about 2 inches long). Buy some replacement hose at the auto parts place for about $0.50 and replace this.

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#5 Old 05-30-2008, 04:18 PM
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I'm not a mechanic and don't feel comfortable doing any of these suggested repairs myself.

These all seem like relatively simple procedures though, so there must be a reason my mechanic was so quick to refer me to the dealer to take care of this instead of taking it on himself.

Current: 2002 Grand Caravan Sport 3.3L
Previous: 1989 Caravan C/V 3.0L
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#6 Old 05-30-2008, 04:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hcmq
you will not be able to clear the light then go right to the smog test because they hook up to your computer and it will tell them that it was just reset!
Thanks. That's what I suspected. Is there any way to clear the memory of the thing so you don't see what codes were in there before?

Current: 2002 Grand Caravan Sport 3.3L
Previous: 1989 Caravan C/V 3.0L
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#7 Old 05-30-2008, 04:49 PM
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at the smog test the computer won't show old codes. it will only show that the code were recently re-set. usually it will show that it was re-set less than 50 start cycles ago.

your mechanic doesn't want to do it prolly because he is in over his head with modern engines. it sounds like he doesn't have access to aldata or similar which would scare me to death!

find a mechanic that has aldata and they will be able to look up this super simple EVAC system for your van and easily fix it.

good luck-
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#8 Old 06-26-2008, 11:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hcmq
at the smog test the computer won't show old codes. it will only show that the code were recently re-set. usually it will show that it was re-set less than 50 start cycles ago.
So if they see that the light was recently reset, do they get suspicious or something?

I heard that they are doing a new procedure during the smog test where they remove the gas cap and put a sensor there. Is that going to show that I have an evap problem?

I also heard that only 1976-1995 cars get certain tests (in California), so I'm not sure if the gas cap removal thing is done on newer cars or not.

Current: 2002 Grand Caravan Sport 3.3L
Previous: 1989 Caravan C/V 3.0L
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#9 Old 06-27-2008, 09:27 AM
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They do not get "suspicious" the vehicle just fails. The thought behind it is that if it has been less than 50 cycles the computer (ECM) doesn't yet know for sure that the vehicle is operating properly in terms of emissions so the vehicle automatically fails.

Here in Maryland which has very tough emission standards. They used to pressure check the gas cap and insert a size guage into the filler neck to make sure that you didn't punch out your filler hole in order to put in different types of fuel.

We also used to have to put the vehicle on a treadmill!! But so many people sued over it possibly causing damage to the tranny that they don't use them anymore it cost the tax payers millions for the equipment and millions now not to use it!
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#10 Old 06-27-2008, 11:00 AM
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As stated above, they'll fail it, but not because it was reset recently, but because the emissions monitors will show that the tests have not been run. To clarify-- the engine computer runs various tests to check the emissions components. The tests are only run when the conditions are correct for a valid test.

For example, the EVAP leak test will be conducted when the engine is cold and the ambient temperature is low enough that fuel pressure won't interfere with the test. Some tests will run only when the vehicle is on the highway, etc. So when you reset the PCM, the emissions monitor tests are all set to "not run" and the PCM starts working its way through each test. When a test passes, it records a "pass" in its memory, when a test fails, it records a "fail" in its memory (and lights the CEL), if a test has not been run, it will show up as a "not run".

When the emissions computer at the shop is connected to the car it will show this pass/fail/not run information. If the monitors have not run then, with certain exceptions depending on the state law, the emissions station will fail the vehicle.

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#11 Old 06-27-2008, 02:19 PM
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as you stated rick it is different in some states and you are half correct.

in Maryland they will not pass nor test a vehicle if it has recently been reset no matter what the cause. IE: if you recently put a new battery in, etc.

if the vehicle is past the "recently reset" code then what you describe is the proceedure.

also here in MD shops do not do the official emissions tests. the state owns and operates their own "VEIP" facilities (vehicle emissions inspection program) all over the state and currently we have to get our vehicles tested every two years in order to our registration updated.
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#12 Old 06-27-2008, 04:11 PM
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I think I understand how this works now. If I'm understanding this correctly, all the car's emissions "self-tests" must have been successfully run and logged as a "Pass" in the memory of the car's computer in order to pass smog.

Thanks to Rick99 and hcmq for the explanations!

Current: 2002 Grand Caravan Sport 3.3L
Previous: 1989 Caravan C/V 3.0L
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