The following is a compilation of Q&A's submitted by enthusiasts and answered by Ask Motor-Mike and Ed.
Part Fifteen - Q&A 351 - 375
351. I have a 2001 LE PT with power window syndrome. It is erratic and only on the two front windows. At 35k miles the dealer replaced the motor. It worked fine until about 37k miles, then started acting up again. Sometimes the windows go down and sometimes they don't. They work together or they don't. If they go down, they will always go back up. Now, they mostly don't work; however sporadically they operate correctly for a couple of days, or month. The rear windows always work fine. The dealer tells me it is now out of warranty. I want to fix it myself. Can you help me find a solution? - Paul, from Virginia.
We worked through another similar report about a year ago. The Express-Down module was replaced. This is the window switch and housing in the center I/P bezel. You may want to have it checked before you replace it, to ensure that's actually the problem.
352. I have a Hahn Stage 1 Turbo on an otherwise stock motor. Is there any sanity in adding a nitrous system, and what are the caveats? For that matter, is there any rational reason to do it? - Rob, from the USA.
I don't have any experience mixing goof gas and boost together. 6-8psi compressed into this 2.4L motor is asking a lot from the powdered metal connecting rods. Plus the fuel requirements may be tricky. You need more fuel for the blower and even more for NOS. A pump, pickup, lines, regulator, and injectors may be needed to make up the volume of fuel needed to prevent pinging and meltdown. Don't take my advice to the bank. I've not combined the two together. I suggest you contact both Hahn and the NOS provider.
353. I purchased CRD (diesel) PT Cruiser in early February and received it May 7th. When the vehicle reaches a speed of 70 to 80 km/h the chassis oscillates laterally with important amplitudes. In addition to this, I have a right lateral pull. My first thoughts were directed towards the Goodyear tires because they had to be severely counterweight (over 100 gr) to get equilibrate. After my test drive and complaints the dealer changed the 4 tires July 6th and replaced them with the Michelin brand. I still have the same problem. The dealer is waiting for spare parts (2 weeks now for C/V joint transmission) but DC has negative stock. I did pay for a new car and spare parts exist...DC builds new cars every day. Has anyone else reported similar problems? Thank you. - Prigent, from France.
We have not received other complaints of this nature. The dealer may be correct. The CV - Constant Velocity shafts may be defective. With all shafts manufactured for production in Mexico, they may not have any available to the supply chain. Since you have the diesel engine, you cannot exchange them for CV's used in a gasoline PT.
353A. We have a 2001 LE PT and have noticed that the body emblems are starting to peel off, we presume due to repeated washing. Is there anything we can do to salvaged them? - Gilbert & Melissa, from the USA.
Other PT owners have reported similar problems with the badging. Apparently, the handsome chrome looking badges that say "PT Cruiser" and "Limited Edition" are made of a chrome coated rubber type plastic material, which doesn't hold up well after repeated washing. Eventually, the chrome starts to peel off and they look rather unsightly.
So, what are our choices? Obviously, washing our PT a few times a day is considered a ritual by many owners, and hardly something we would consider giving up. I guess we could apply a little TLC to these areas during the actual ritual. That way we would be at peace with both the badges and the universe.
Another idea might be to permanently remove them from the PT as some owners have done. I'm told that, without them, it gives the PT a cleaner look. To remove the PT badges use a hair dryer on low heat to soften the adhesive backing. Then slowly and gently peel them off using your fingernails, or by sliding a piece of dental floss underneath them. To remove the remaining adhesive you can use a little vegetable oil or WD-40.
354. I just had the Freedom Design Strut Tower Brace installed on my 2002 Base Model. After carefully inspecting things under the hood after the installation, I have found that the fuel line, which is secured by a clip to keep it from rubbing against the A/C lines is rubbing against the brace. I'm sure I can remedy that with a simple cable tie. On the other side of the engine bay, the brace is partially resting on top of the connector where the IAT sensor wire comes out. This brace is a welded design made specifically to fit the Cruiser. How do I remedy this? Thanks - Maddy, from the USA.
Mike suggested using a zip tie to keep the IAT (Inlet Air Temperature) wire away from the brace. If that's not possible, and there's enough slack in the wire, you can remove and reroute it using the instructions that follow.
Were not familiar with Freedom Design's Strut Bar, however I have received other complaints about installation difficulties on the Cruiser. Other correspondence that we have received describes it as a one-piece design, which allows for very little maneuvering during installation. In the strut bar installation guides we offer on the site both models have an adjustable (threaded) end, which aids in the installation process. We recommend that users who purchase this product and encounter difficulties during installation contact Freedom Design tech/customer support via their web site if these fixes do not resolve the problems.
The sensor is in the air inlet tube.
355. I have a 2002 LE PT Cruiser, w/42K miles. After changing the oil I had the motor running checking for leaks around the filter and plug and I noticed water (condensation) dripping from the first exhaust connection clamp past the catalytic converter. The A/C hadn't been running, so I know it wasn't that. Is this normal? Thanks. - Rick, from the USA.
At start-up, a cold engine can create enough moisture condensation in the exhaust to fill a drinking cup. There are usually weep holes placed in the exhaust to drain the water out. This is why the exhaust will rust through from the inside. Short trips, under 20 minutes, make this much worse. I haven't looked for a weep hole at the converter slip-connection. If it is leaking, you may want to have it checked out and documented by the dealer, but it shouldn't be an issue. The exhaust is so clean, there's no way you could get harmed by it.
356. I was looking under the rear of my 2002 TE PT recently when I noticed that the plastic fuel inlet pipe just moves and swings around between the fuel tank clamp. The point disappears inside the plastic wheel well panel. Is this normal? - Steve, from the USA.
It is normal and safe, and there's nothing wrong.
357. How long do I have to wait until my stereo (1995 Vauxhall Astra) will accept my code, and should the radio be on or off? - Josh
The stereos in the PT do use any type of lock-code for security.
358. I have a 2001 BE PT and would like to know if the catalytic converter is considered part of the exhaust or emissions systems? Thank you. - Jackie, from the USA.
To comply with clean air regulations, vehicles are equipped with catalytic converters. These converters reduce the emission of hydrocarbons, oxides of nitrogen and carbon monoxide. Although the catalytic converter works with the emission control system the service manual classifies it as part of the exhaust system. The exhaust system components consist of a catalytic converter, intermediate pipe, muffler, band clamps, and support isolators.
359. Have you heard of white powder from the passenger's airbag coating the hard surfaces and floating through the car on the 2002 model PT's? I have brought it to the dealer on 3 separate occasions, but would like your opinion. It's literally giving me a headache. - Lou, from the USA.
We have received one similar complaint regarding white powder surrounding the passenger side airbag cover, however there was no indication that the owner experienced any ill effects because of it. That said, the manual indicates that the airbags utilize sodium hydroxide (powdery substance) and can cause a physical reaction. This may be what you're seeing and inhaling. From the 2002 service manual:
Handling A Deployed Airbag - The vehicle interior may contain a very small amount of sodium hydroxide powder, a by-product of airbag deployment. Sodium hydroxide powder can irritate the skin, eyes, nose and throat. Wear safety glasses, rubber gloves, and long sleeved clothing when cleaning any of the powder residue from the vehicle.
Warning - if you find that the clean up is irritating your skin, run cool water over the affected area. Also, if you experience nasal or throat irritation, exit the vehicle for fresh air until the irritation ceases. If irritation continues, see a physician.
There is a TSB for this issue, which you can read about in the Pit area.
360. I have a 2002 PT LE and would like to change my stock muffler to a cat-back system. Can you please tell me if this involves any cutting or welding or is it a bolt on installation? I am looking at either the Dynomax or Borla. Thanks for your help. - Manny, from the USA.
Bassani, Borla and Dynomax products slip onto the OEM clamp ends. No cutting is required. You may also want to check this reference regarding the use of a cat-back with the Dynomax Super Turbo muffler if that's what you planned on purchasing.
361. My 2002 BE PT came with the 15" wheels. If I replace them with 16" wheels will I have to calibrate the speedometer/odometer to maintain the correct mph and mileage reading? Thanks. - John, from Texas.
The OEM 15" and 16" rim/tire combination are the same overall height and will not affect the speedometer. As the overall diameter of the wheel changes so will the accuracy of the speedometer and odometer, which identically mirror the change. Since the PT is a front wheel drive vehicle the speedometer and odometer is set on the overall height of the front wheels. Changing the height of just the rear wheels will not affect the speedometer or odometer.
Here's an example of how to determine the affects of changing the overall height of the front wheels, which Shane from TireTrack, posted in the forums several months ago.
You start with a tire that is 205/55-16 (24.9" tall) and you go to 205/60-16 (25.6" tall). This would equal a 2.8% difference in height. If your speedometer reads 65mph with the new tires, you're actually driving 66.8 mph.
Here's the math at 65 mph:
If you're going from a 205/55-16 (24.9" tall) to a 205/60-16 (25.6" tall) tire:
25.6 / 24.9 =1.028 X 65 mph = 66.8 mph.
If you're going from a 205/60-16 (25.6" tall) to a 205/55-16 (24.9" tall) tire:
24.9 / 25.6 = .972 X 65 mph = 63.2 mph.
If there is a significant change in overall wheel height your speedometer and odometer will need to be electronically calibrated with the new wheel spec's by your local DC dealer. See the speedo re-calibration limitations here.
See a Tire and Wheel Upgrade calculator here.
362. I just purchased a used 2001 LTD PT Cruiser. I have tried to program the alarm/central locking so it will chirp when I use the key FOB, but can't get it to work. Is this just an option or were all models fitted with it? I have tried time and time again, but it just will not recognize it. I have followed the instructions in the owners' manual and also on your site without success. I was able to program the automatic door lock feature at 15mph without any problems. Thank you. - Jason, from England.
The chirp alarm/central locking feature is the default set up on all U.S. PT's with the alarm sentry system and or power door locks. We received word from another individual in the U.K. who owns a 2002 Cruiser 2.2 CRD Touring edition, and experienced the same problem. We were unable to determine why the features and instructions for programming the PT were included in his manual, but not functional on his PT. We suggested that he check with his dealer, however we have not received a follow up reply from him.
Follow up - Andy Smithson, from the UK, wrote that he experienced the same (chirp) issue with his 2001 RHD Cruiser, and was told by the dealer that the feature had been disabled on UK vehicles due to noise abatement regulations.
363. I purchased a new chrome shorty antenna and bezel for my PT. I know how to install the antenna, but the bezel did not include directions. How do I remove the OEM one (bezel) and replace it with the new one? Thanks. - Chuck, from the USA.
We have a guide on low profile antennas, which includes a section on installing the bezel, in the Pit area.
364. How do you keep the dome light on? It stays on for a period of time automatically, but I would like to know what switch or button to push to keep it on longer. Thank you. - Lee, from the USA.
The interior lights come on when a door is opened and will automatically turn off in about 8 minutes if a door is left open. If the dimmer control (rotating ring on the multifunction control lever) is left in the Dome light position the interior lights will turn off in about 20 minutes. Turn the ignition switch ON to restore the interior light operation.
Dome Light Position - Rotate the dimmer control completely upward to the second detent to turn on the interior lights. The interior lights will remain on when the dimmer control is in this position.
365. I have a 2001 LE PT. For the last few days the display in the overhead console has been erratic. This morning it displays the letters SC? Have you heard of this happening to anyone else? Thank you for your help. - Marvin, from New Hampshire.
According to the owners' manual, if the display shows the codes OC or SC you should see your local DC dealer for repairs. There's no information provided beyond that.
366. I have a 2002 LE PT and would like to know what is the largest wheel/tire I can install on my stock PT? - Alec, from the USA.
We've read that you can fit as large as 19" in front and 20" in the rear. The most common sizes found on the PT seem to be 17 and or 18" tires all the way around. We're not tire experts, therefore we suggest that you discuss your interests with a reputable tire retailer to determine which options are best suited for you.
367. I read the Interior Air Filter Installation Guide and decided to order the Mopar product (P/N 82206886). I was told that when the filter needed replacement you have to order a complete new unit. Do you know where I can purchase just the replacement filter? Thank you. - Loren, from Illinois.
At this time it is our understanding that Mopar is not producing a stand alone replacement filter for their air infiltration unit. The cost to replace the entire Mopar unit ($15) isn't much more than you would normally spend on one of the filters mentioned in our guide. You can figure on replacing it about every 15k miles. Perhaps by then Mopar will offer a replacement filter.
368. I have a new Cruiser with OEM stock engine. At what speed does the limiter cut in on the 2002 PT Cruiser. I tried the DC site, but no information was available. Thank you. - Myrya, from the USA.
The engine rev limiter is set at 3500rpm in park or neutral and 6250rpm while driving. The auto transmission controller will not let you get above 5800rpm. I have also read reports that the top speed limit is set at 118mph.
369. My mother has a 2001 PT and would like to get the Xenon front bumper cover, how is the front license plate and bracket removed to put the cover on? It's located in the center of the factory bumper. - Brandon, from the USA.
Remove the two screws holding the tag in place. Once the tag is removed you will be able to see and remove the four screws which fasten the bracket to the bumper.
370. I'm interested in installing a Dynomax muffler like you did. The photo shows a hanger welded to the muffler. Does this come with the muffler or must it be welded on after purchase? Is it possible to cut the stock pipe ahead of the stock muffler and then connect the pipe to the Dynomax with an adapter? Then the OEM muffler could be reinstalled, if necessary, using another adapter. Thank you. - Doug, from Canada.
I had my Dynomax installed at a pro muffler shop. The hanger was provided by the shop and welded on during the install. You could cut the pipe, but you would not be able to change back to the OEM system if there were warranty concerns.
371. I was wondering if you have any experience with the Kenne Bell Optimizer II Engine/Transmission Performance Control for the PT? Thanks. - Bob, from the USA.
Sorry, we don't have any personal experience with this product. You might try the PT forums, I believe it has been discussed there.
372. This past winter I experienced a problem with the rear window defogger on my 2001 PT, which I'm just getting around to checking out. Can you tell me where the fuse is located for the defogger? Thank you. - Del, from New Hampshire.
The system consists of a rear glass with two vertical bus bars and a series of electrically connected grid lines fired on the inside surface. A control switch and a timing circuit are combined into a single assembly. A push-button at the center of the instrument panel, below the radio, turns the defroster ON or OFF. Circuit protection is provided by a cartridge fuse located in the Power Distribution Center (PDC) for the heated grid circuit, and by a fuse in the fuse block for the control circuit.
373. Can you tell me what these malfunction codes are (FL 0005, EE 05, and BL 01), they come up before the start of the instrument gauge self-test on my 2002 Cruiser? Thank you. - Jeff, from the USA.
Your MIL codes for the instrument cluster self-test don't seem to be codes at all. Everyone with a 2002 model has seen codes the same or similar to yours when testing the cluster. The 2001 model does not show these numbers; instead it indicates "no fault". The theory on the 2002 model is that the codes are the software revision level of the cluster, not MIL codes. We cannot confirm this theory, but it makes sense.
374. I have a 2001 Cruiser that has leather seats with heat and side airbags. I am not happy with the leather seats and want to swap them with a friend for cloth seats. When we tried that, the air bag warning light comes on an we realize that something needs to be done to make that go off. We left the wiring harness in the car and we were wondering what we could do to make the light go off? Thanks. - Scott, from the USA.
I'm sorry, but for safety sake we do not provide any advice on disabling the safety restraints within the vehicle. In fact, we recommend that all owners borrow or purchase a factory service manual when working with or in proximity in the restraint system. If your new replacement seats do not contain side air bags we can't say how this will affect the overall operation of the restraint system. I would suggest that you contact DC, explain what you have in mind and follow their advice.
375. I have a 2003 LE PT and have a question about my security system. When I locked my doors I noticed that the indicator light in the instrument cluster was flashing and does not stop until I unlock the doors. I never noticed it flashing before. Thank you. - Angie, from Ohio.
The Vehicle Theft Security System is armed when the vehicle is locked using the power door lock switches, remote keyless entry (RKE) transmitter or key cylinder switches. The VTSS will not arm by mechanically locking the vehicle doors. This will manually override the system. After the vehicle is locked and the last door is closed, the circular red VTSS indicator in the instrument cluster will flash quickly for 16 seconds, indicating that arming is in progress. If no monitored systems are activated during this period, the system will arm. After 16 seconds, the LED will continue to flash at a slower rate indicating the system is armed. If the VTSS indicator does not illuminate at all upon door closing it indicates that the system is not arming. VTSS disarming occurs upon normal vehicle entry by unlocking either door or liftgate via the key cylinders or RKE transmitter, or by starting the vehicle with a valid Sentry Key.
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