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The following is a compilation of Q&A's submitted by enthusiasts and answered by Ask Motor-Mike and Ed.


Part Eighteen - Q&A 426 - 450

426. I would like to know how to remove the A/C directional vents. The two in the center console, one in the instrument cluster and one in the passenger side air bag cover. Thanks. - Edris

You'll find the directions for removing the two A/C vents in the instrument panel center bezel, one A/C vent in the instrument cluster and one A/C vent in the passenger air bag cover in the Pit area. The A/C vent in the passenger air bag cover is a bit more work to access and involves disarming the restraint system.


427. Does anyone sell a larger fuel tank for my 2002 PT Cruiser? This thing is out of gas every 240 miles-max. The low fuel light/chime sounds by that time. The car is a 5 speed and is getting about 23 MPG all around (mostly highway). Having to refuel so often is a pain. Thanks. - Jim, from the USA.

Were not aware of any secondary or replacement gas tanks for the PT that would increase your traveling range between fill-ups. There are after market tanks, however a good deal of effort would probably be required in order to effectively modify one for use with the PT.


428. I would like to add lighting to illuminate the ground area surrounding the front doors when someone exits the vehicle while the interior lights are turned on. I am looking for a place that's accessible in dash area that sends the signal to say the dome light, which I can tie my lights into. Thank you. - Lars, from Michigan.

I can only suggest splicing into the existing wires at the dome light. The lighting module inside the Body Control Module controls the interior lighting. It does not use a simple switch, and tampering with it creates the possibility of damaging the BCM.


429. I own a 2002 LE PT w/manual transmission. I'm not terribly pleased with the shifting performance of the OEM set-up, and contacted Mr. Gasket, owner of the Hurst Quick/Shift system P/N 391 4030. Unfortunately they didn't know if their equipment would work in my PT, and suggested that I research the similarities between the 01 and 02 transmissions. They did say that the shifter should work if the Cruiser has the New Venture transmission. Based upon your knowledge will this 2001 kit work on the 2002 without further modification? Thank you. - Michael, from the USA.

Both the 2001 and 2002 Cruisers use the New Venture manual transmission. The export PT's utilize the Getrag that's currently going into the turbo PT. I'm not aware of any changes to the shifter. Let us know how it goes, take photos and submit an installation guide.


430. What is the flow rate for the PT's oil pump at 3000 rpm? I'm just curious because the oil filter for the PT is rated at 3 GPM nominal. Thanks. - Scott, from the USA.

I do not have the specs for the oil pump, however here's some general oil filter information. Oil filters use a bypass valve set at a predetermined (usually around 8psi) pressure. Once the oil pressure is above that, the filter bypasses most of the oil from the pump, although some oil still flows through the filter while you drive. The idea is that some oil, filtered all the time, will eventually clean the entire system. This has been the method for a long, long time. So, oil will flow regardless of the oil filter specs.


431. I purchased a 2001 PT in Nov 2000, and currently have 35,500 miles (mostly highway) on it. During a recent oil change, the mechanic noticed signs of a possible coolant leak. I brought the car to the dealer, who indicated that the radiator needed to be replaced, due to serious corrosion from electrolysis. In just another 500 miles the warranty would have expired, and the problem would have been mine. There was no other sign of a problem. The car was not overheating, even when the A/C was on. There was minimal coolant loss (overflow tank did not need refilling). When the car was pulled out of the garage, the floor looked clean. Most likely the coolant seeped out when the car was hot and evaporated before dropping on the floor. The dealer is replacing the radiator, thermostat, and some gaskets. No specific cause for the electrolytic reaction was given: voltage seepage, coolant failure. The dealer did say that he has seen other PT's with this problem, and one overheated its engine. PT Cruiser owners may want to check their radiators for corrosion before their warranty expires, and replace their coolant more often than specified in the manual. Thank you. - Alan, from California.

As coolant ages inside aluminum radiators and engines, it can break down on a molecular level. This forms electrolysis. You can actually measure a voltage from the coolant liquid to ground. It works the same as a wet-cell battery. The long-life orange coolant is supposed to be better. However, many radiators are gumming up from old coolant and a public who's been told it lasts for 5 years. It's a fluid, change it. The same goes for brake fluid. It should be flushed every few years. As it absorbs moisture, the boiling point is exponentially reduced. We have not seen any other reports of this from PT owners. Either the technician was BS'ing, or other owners aren't online or reporting it.


432. I have a 2001 PT, w/manual transmission and have made several modifications to improve appearance, handling and performance. Although unmeasured, I know that I've gained some hp. In any case, it sure drives and handles significantly better than stock! I'm not inclined to think very seriously about adding a super or turbocharger, however I would entertain upgrading the cam for additional performance. I know they're around, but I haven't heard anything about this particular modification. I hope you guys might be able to shed some light on this. Thanks for your help. - Rich, from New York.

I'm afraid that this is something that you will have to research on your own. We don't have experience replacing the OEM cams with performance cams in the PT, nor have we received much input from site visitors. There have been a few forum members, most notably Brad, (Powertrip - forum name) who has a good deal of experience with this modification. I would suggest that you start your research by visiting the Crane Cams web site and popular PT forums. On the forums, conduct a search, using Brad's forum name and or "crane cams" to pull up more information.


433. Is there a way to dim the dash indicators for the driving lights and the fog lamps? Thanks. - Brian, from the USA.

To change the brightness of the instrument panel lights, rotate the center portion of the Multi-function Control Lever up or down. The fog light indicator is not controlled by the dimmer, and can't be dimmed.


434. The 2003 model year PT has a passenger assist handle above the doors. Is it possible to retrofit these to a 2002 model? - Alec, from the USA.

The 2002 model already has the handles. If the base model does not, it should be simple to add them.


435. I would like to remove the Chrysler hood emblem from my cruiser, but I don't know if there are holes drilled in the hood under the emblem? Thanks for the informatin. - Edward, from the USA.

I couldn't find specific info in the service manual, which references the Chrysler Wing emblem. When you lift the hood you'll notice two (emblem) mounting studs protruding through the underside, which are secured by two retaining rings. The emblem may very well pop right off after removing the retainers.


436. How do I remove the window weatherstrip so I can tint the windows without any fibers getting under the window film? - Eamon, from the U.K.

In order to access each glass run weatherstrip you will have to remove the trim panel and glass window on each door. The procedures can be found in the Pit area.

437. I have a question about the automatic transmission on my 2002 LE PT. Sometimes I can feel my car shift from second to first gear when I am coming to a slow stop. I took it to the dealer and their diagnostic check indicated that everything was ok. They told me that it was the transmission's attempt to shift harder and put out more power to compensate for aggressive driving. They said that it could be smoothed out, but it would slow the car down. Does this sound plausible? - Brock, from the USA.

I think the Cruiser is normal and their answer is nonsense. This behavior is somewhat similar to what most auto owners mention. If you feel it is excessive have another dealer check it out, or test drive a new PT at the dealership and make a comparison.


438. I recently purchased a PT with an OEM roof rack installed. I'd like to just remove the two parts that slide on the rails. Can you help me? Thanks. - Bob, from the USA.

There is an Allen Screw on the end cap at the rear of each rail track. If you loosen (sufficiently) or remove each setscrew, you should be able to slide (towards the rear) the end caps completely off each track. Once the caps are removed, slide the cross rails off the end of the tracks. Once the cross rails are removed, reinstall the end caps to complete the job. To avoid scratching the PT's finish, you may want to find an additional body to help you.


439. I own a 2001 LE PT. I was wondering if the Traction Control System should be in the off position when driving at highway speeds, or does it shut of at a certain speed or engine rpm? Will turning it off do any damage to the system? Thank you. - Mark, from Kansas.

Traction control reduces wheel slip and maintains traction at the driving (front) wheels at speeds below 56 km/h (35 mph) when road surfaces are slippery. The traction control system reduces wheel slip by braking the wheel that is losing traction. When this occurs the TRAC indicator light located above the instrument cluster odometer will flash. The traction control system may be turned off or on by depressing the traction control push button switch button located on the instrument panel, below the radio. The system is always in the ON mode unless:

1. The TRAC OFF switch has been used to turn the system off.
2. There is an Anti-Lock Brake System malfunction.
3. There is a Traction Control System malfunction.
4. The system has been automatically deactivated to prevent damage to the brake system due to overheated brake temperatures.


440. We have a 2002 BE PT. They're building in our area and we have experienced two flat tires during the last month. Were getting a lot of use out of the spare tire, do you have specifications for it? - Kirk, from Florida.

The compact spare tire is for temporary emergency use with radial tires. Since this tire has an approximate thread life of 2000 miles the original tire should be repaired or replaced and reinstalled at the earliest opportunity. Maintain the compact spare tire inflation pressure at 60-psi (414 kpa). Do not exceed 50 mph while the compact spare is installed on the vehicle.


441. Is it possible to drop a PT Turbo engine into a PT Cruiser? If not, why not? Thanks. - Dave, from the USA.

You can do it. If you also transfer all the piping, electronics, hoses, valves, etc. Everything is different. From the emissions leak detection pump to the vacuum solenoids mounted on the strut tower. The PCM will have to be reprogrammed by a dealer to swap VIN numbers.

You may want to look closely before you decide to swap them. Keep in mind that you must swap the entire engine with the turbo. They are both 2.4L motors, but this engine has been reengineered for the Turbo. The water jackets in the block and head are revised for better cooling; the crankshaft hardness is increased; new pistons that lower the compression ratio from 9.4:1 to 8.1:1 are now cooled by oil jets; and the valves are all new. The biggest improvement is the new low-inertia HMC turbocharger, which is integrated into the exhaust manifold.

I would not choose to try this mod. Purchasing a PT Turbo, or adding an aftermarket turbocharger to an existing PT engine would be much less work.


442. Can you recommend a product to remove fine scratches on the "hatch" of the PT? I was looking at Mother's Scratch remover. Thank you. - Harry & Linda, from the USA.

We prefer not to make specific product recommendations, but Mothers, Zaino Brothers, or any top line of products should work fine as long as the scratches are minor. You may want to check this page out for consumer opinions on car care products.


443. I recently had a dual exhaust put on, along with numerous other PT owners, at the Modesto Cruiser convention. The dual goes around the spare tire and is within a couple of inches of the plastic gas filler pipe that goes into the tank. Do I need to wrap the tailpipe or anything else or is it ok? Thank you. - Ralph, from California.

It sounds like the exhaust pipes are routed correctly; it should be fine just the way it is. No need to worry.


444. I have a 2003 PT Turbo w/17" OEM wheels. Is there any way to make the turning radius smaller? I measured it at about 43 feet, larger than the radius on a Chevy Suburban. Thank you. - Harvey, from the USA.

The turning radius is different for each wheel option. The 15" wheels are 36.5ft, while the 16" is 40.1ft. There is no simple fix.


445. I own a 2001 PT, and the driver seat makes a clicking sound each time I begin to brake or accelerate. I've tried bouncing up and down, and moving fore and aft while the car is parked, but nothing happens. It only occurs when the vehicle is in motion. The dealer checked it out and couldn't find anything. The clicking sound is very loud, similar to snapping your fingers together, and everyone in the car can hear it. I have removed the seat and thoroughly inspected it, but found nothing. If you know of a solution please let me know. - Craig, from the USA.

It's difficult to diagnose noise-related problems online. If you can reproduce the sound for the dealer, ask them to swap out your seat with one from a new PT to ensure that the sound actually originates there. If the seat is the problem insist on a new seat under the bumper-to-bumper warranty. You may have a spring clip that's loose inside the seat assembly.


446. I have a 2003 PT Turbo. The rear window washer weeps, water will run down the rear window even if the washer hasn't been used for a week or more. It seems to happen on hot days or during rapid acceleration. The dealer says the factory has no fix. Thank you. - Harvey, from the USA.

The washer uses a simple pump for both the front and rear. The pump is reversible. That's how it pumps to both sides independently. I would look at the pump seals for leakage. On the 2001 models there were some complaints from owners regarding weepy washers


447. I just bought a new 2002 LE Pt, which is fully loaded with the exception of a roof rack. I'd like to install a roof rack, but I'm skeptical about drilling through the painted roof surface due to the potential for rust-through. Also, would I need to drop the headliner for a strong installation or can a sturdy installation be accomplished from the outside only? Thank you. - Brad, from the USA.

This modification is a good deal of work to perform. The factory option price starts to look very attractive when you see what's involved in DIY. You would have to drill mounting holes through the roof in order to mount the rack. (Treat the holes with rust protection preventative and paint.) In addition, the mounting bolts must be accessed from the interior of the vehicle, which necessities the removal of the headliner. Instructions are included with the rack, and you'll find a headliner guide, along with installation tips in the Pit area.


448. How can I convert the instrument panel 12v power outlet from always on, to ignition switched? Thanks. - Max, from the USA.

You can cut the power feed and splice into the cigar lighter / power outlet wiring in the floor console. To access the area, loosen the 4 screws, which hold the floor console in place. Lift the floor console high enough to slip your hand underneath and locate the 16awg red power wire connected to the cigar lighter or power outlet. 12v power is available here when the ignition is in the ON or ACC position only.


449. A fellow PT owner mentioned an IOD fuse, and I've also read about it a little on this site, but I'm still not sure what it is. Can you explain it in more detail? Thank you. - Lorraine, from New Mexico.

All vehicles are equipped with an Ignition-Off Draw (IOD) fuse that is disconnected within the Power Distribution Center (PDC - Fuse #18, 20amp) when the vehicle is shipped from the factory. Dealer personnel are to reconnect the IOD fuse in the PDC as part of the preparation procedures performed just prior to new vehicle delivery.

The term ignition-off draw identifies a normal condition where power is being drained from the battery with the ignition switch in the Off position. The IOD fuse feeds the memory and sleep mode functions for some of the electronic modules in the vehicle as well as various other accessories that require battery current when the ignition switch is in the Off position, including the clock. The only reason the IOD fuse is disconnected is to reduce the normal IOD of the vehicle electrical system during new vehicle transportation and pre-delivery storage to reduce battery depletion, while still allowing vehicle operation so that the vehicle can be loaded, unloaded and moved as needed by both vehicle transportation company and dealer personnel.

The IOD fuse can be used by the vehicle owner as a convenient means of reducing battery depletion when a vehicle is to be stored for periods not to exceed about thirty days. However, it must be remembered that disconnecting the IOD fuse will not eliminate IOD, but only reduce this normal condition. If a vehicle will be stored for more than about thirty days, the battery negative cable should be disconnected to eliminate normal IOD; and, the battery should be tested and recharged at regular intervals during the vehicle storage period to prevent the battery from becoming discharged or damaged.


450. I just finished installing a Mopar subwoofer in my 2002 LE PT TE. I would like to independently control and mix the amount of bass to the sub. Can you advise how to wire a passive trim pot into one of the available front switch plates? Since the powered sub runs off the front console power port (always on), do I need to be concerned about draining the battery? Thanks. - Max, from the USA.

Don't worry about draining the battery. The sub only powers on when it senses an input signal. There is a volume adjustment potentiometer at the rear of the sub housing. You tune the volume to your personal taste during the installation. If you are inclined to disassemble the sub and extend the 3 wires to a panel mounted volume pot, make sure the resistance specs are the same. Watch for linear and audio taper potentiometers.


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