Shaking..... [Archive] - The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums

: Shaking.....

03-13-2004, 08:53 PM

I have a 1996 Plymouth Voyager with a 3.0L engine.

When accelerating between 40-50mph, the front of the minivan shakes severely. The shaking goes away immediately if I take my foot off the gas or if I accelerate past 50mph.

I had the tires aligned/balanced but that didn't fix the problem.

Any idea what is causing the shaking? (I am almost hoping that it is a transmission related problem because the current transmission is under warranty.)

Thanks in advance!


03-13-2004, 10:09 PM
Is it a shaking side-to-side or more of a jerking back-and-forth? If it's side-to-side I'd look more toward the front suspension, maybe a tie rod or stabilizer arm. If it's jerking back and forth it could also be any number of things such as a tranny problem or a bad differential pin.

Do you sometimes hear a loud slam when you go over bumps? Any other odd grinding/crunching sounds coming from the suspension?

03-13-2004, 10:15 PM
Hmm....40-50MPH....Thats 4th gear if you have the 4-Speed....Do you have the 4 Speed? It is a possibility but...if it was a tranny problem, I think the Service Engine Light would appear.
Is it on?

03-13-2004, 10:30 PM
If you get it at a specified speed it could also be a CV (constant velocity) driveshaft. left or right or both. Do you hear any noise, clunking, when you turn at low speed. Also, does it get any better or worse as you drive and the system warms up? maybe 10 minutes into your ride?..

03-15-2004, 11:29 AM
Thanks for all of your ideas.

I'll try to answer the questions I had as best I can.

I think I have a 4 speed transmission but I am not positive. The shaking motion between 40-50mph is a side-to-side motion. Usually it feels like the problem is on the front, right-hand side. It seems worse when I am driving up a hill than when I am going on a flat road. Either way, the shaking goes away if I take my foot off the gas. There is no difference in the shaking when the car is cold vs. warm. I don't hear any unusual noises while cornering or going over bumps at any speed. The engine light is NOT on.

Does this make any of the possibilities more likely? Are any of these things dangerous?
CV Driveshaft, Front Suspension, Transmission, ...


03-15-2004, 11:44 AM
Mileage level might help also. I am thinking it is a CV joint or axle shaft issue.


03-15-2004, 03:50 PM
I looked back through the posts and can not see the mileage. If its there.. sorry.. anyhow.. if you have over 75k and have not put CVs in it.. I would look there first. They probably need, or could use replacement anyhow.. hard to tell without seeing the truck?
Ill probably get flamed for the 75k comment... :krazy

03-15-2004, 08:09 PM
Could it be a steering rack? That was the problem with myy Uncles 1996 3.0 Caravan

03-15-2004, 08:41 PM
could it be a torque converter? sometimes when it starts to go youll get a quivier or "shimmy" on any acceleration

03-21-2004, 12:54 PM
Put the Trans, in Manual 3rd,And try it. That should till if it's a Trans, problem or not.CK CV by making SLOW turns right and left! Wheel all the way left and right You will clinking sounds, if there are NG.

03-21-2004, 02:41 PM
I would be leaning toward the C/V (why do they call them constant velocity when they are not constantly at velocity? :P) joint from your description but it could even be a slightly out of balance half shaft.

I had to replace the ones on my 87 caravan twice becuase the 'new' set was out of balance and did exactly what you describe. I believe the passenger side's was slightly bent like a pool cue that is doglegged.

Chas :blink:

03-22-2004, 08:52 AM
If none of the axle issues pan out, I'd suggest looking for a broken engine/tranny mount.

03-22-2004, 09:20 AM
Does the front of the car feel like it's vibrating or wobbling side to side. If it's strong vibration try this test. Lightly appply the brake but keep the gas pedal at same acceleration. If the vibration abruptly stops you have a converter shudder. Why apply the brake? Simple it overides converter lockup.
If it does not stop and it feels more like a wobble, it could be any number of things....some very simple some a little more complicated. Here is a list of things I've seen happen not necessarily in order.
1. CV joints on the axles. BTW if you have this don't bother buying remans they are often worse than what comes out. Go to a competent drive shaft rebuilder. Cost is about the same and performance is MUCH better.
2. Corrosion between wheel and hubs (especially if alloy wheels).
3. Corrosion between rotor plate and axle hub. (Best to take care of 2 & 3 at same time).
4. Improperly torqued wheels either uneven, too tight/loose or not done in proper order or steps.
5. Bad tires
6. Bad motor mount
7. Steering rack and or tie rod ends.
Good Luck
This is my biggest gripe with the vans. This is a common and very hard to diagnose problem as they seem to be overly sensitive to anything that causes it and it could be multiple issues.

03-24-2004, 11:25 AM
I had the same scenario. Problem went away after getting the transmission maintenance service at the dealership (flush, fill, filter, 2 belt adjustment done for $119). I had been topping off with generic Trans fluid which was not 7176 Mopar trans fluid. I'm told because the fluid is too slippery you get a slipping Torque Converter.