: Anyone ever owned a Durango?



Spyder
12-27-07, 06:37 PM
A 2000 in particular.

It's caught my eye, its clean and in good condition, I fit in it very well, its got 4wd and the price is right.

According to Edmunds reviews and a couple of buddies of mine who work in shops around town, they're very reliable and very rarely have any sort of serious problems.

Fuel mileage seems to be the only complaint, at between 12-18, depending on engine and city/highway miles. Not sure which engine this one has. It's the V8 Magnum badge on the side and the girl couldn't tell me which of the three (4.7, 5.2, 5.9) it had so I'm going back tomorrow morning to talk to the guy that owns the lot.

Purty green color, interior looks like its in really good shape, tires and wheels look good. All the reviews say that the sound system is excellent for a stock vehicle. I think I like it. Anyone disagree or can add more for my pre-purchasing informed pleasure?

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-27-07, 07:17 PM
Get a 5.9L R/T. :cool2:

misfit6794
12-27-07, 07:24 PM
I was looking at one of those until I found out what kind of issues they have. Apparently on dakotas and durangos ball joints are a MAJOR issue and expensive to fix. So make sure you get under the truck and look at the front end, the ball joints should be tight with no play in them. Transmissions are also a pretty big issue for durangos, so make sure the fluid isn't dark and doesn't smell burnt. Also make sure you get the engine up to temp to make sure the tranny isn't slipping, beat it on. Don't forget to check that the 4 wheel drive engages and disengages in 4 hi and 4 lo, the transfer cases are also known to fail on these. Go to msn.com and read user reviews for that specific year, it will be very eye opening.

MN-STS-LOVER
12-27-07, 08:01 PM
I was looking at one of those until I found out what kind of issues they have. Apparently on dakotas and durangos ball joints are a MAJOR issue and expensive to fix. So make sure you get under the truck and look at the front end, the ball joints should be tight with no play in them. Transmissions are also a pretty big issue for durangos, so make sure the fluid isn't dark and doesn't smell burnt. Also make sure you get the engine up to temp to make sure the tranny isn't slipping, beat it on. Don't forget to check that the 4 wheel drive engages and disengages in 4 hi and 4 lo, the transfer cases are also known to fail on these. Go to msn.com and read user reviews for that specific year, it will be very eye opening.

The issues you brought up are correct. My dad has a '00 Dakota and had ball joint issues. No problem with the tranny (yet!) The ball joints were covered under a re-call so check that out before buying it.

creeker
12-27-07, 08:42 PM
Check out "carsurvey.org",lots of negative comments.

dkozloski
12-27-07, 08:51 PM
My stepdaughter had two of them, one was a hemi. Both lost the transmission and one lost it twice.

c5 rv
12-27-07, 09:14 PM
Before you buy a Dodge of that vintage, google durango oil sludge.

Boombotz
12-27-07, 09:23 PM
I had a 01 RT with the 5.9. I loved the power. Gas mileage was around 8 MPG, maybe 10 if I drove like a grandma. Sound system was good, My biggest complaint was I couldn't stop that truck quickly if I needed too. The brakes sucked.
Your 00 will have the 5.2 if it has the V8 Magnum emblem on the front fender.

Also very true about the oil sludge. but I don't keep my vehicles more then 60,000 miles.

misfit6794
12-27-07, 10:04 PM
They are really tempting tho because you can get for really cheap, but theres reasons for it. Try looking at a 4 runner

ryannel2003
12-27-07, 10:18 PM
4Runner's are very expensive. My local dealer has an '02 SR5 with 114k miles selling for $15k. Thats the thing about damn Japanese cars... they hold they're value too well. :D

Jesda
12-27-07, 10:46 PM
Durangos eat water pumps.

Night Wolf
12-27-07, 10:58 PM
I was looking at one of those until I found out what kind of issues they have. Apparently on dakotas and durangos ball joints are a MAJOR issue and expensive to fix. So make sure you get under the truck and look at the front end, the ball joints should be tight with no play in them. Transmissions are also a pretty big issue for durangos, so make sure the fluid isn't dark and doesn't smell burnt. Also make sure you get the engine up to temp to make sure the tranny isn't slipping, beat it on. Don't forget to check that the 4 wheel drive engages and disengages in 4 hi and 4 lo, the transfer cases are also known to fail on these. Go to msn.com and read user reviews for that specific year, it will be very eye opening.

The problem with the new (90's new) Dakota/Durango is most, if not all of the front-end of the truck is non-serviceable (grease) and all have sealed balljoints etc...

It stinks, but the Town Car was the same way, tho I replaced all those and the new ones have grease fittings, alot of cars are like that now.

hueterm
12-27-07, 11:12 PM
If the mileage is no better than that, just go w/a late 90s Tahoe/Yukon.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-28-07, 03:18 AM
If the mileage is no better than that, just go w/a late 90s Tahoe/Yukon.

Smartest post of the day. Late '90s Yukon's/Tahoe's rock.

ryannel2003
12-28-07, 03:22 AM
My mom had a '99 Suburban. Dark Toredor Red w/ Pewter two tone. Beautiful truck and had the most comfortable seats of any GMC she's had to date (also had a '01 Yukon XL and an '05 Yukon XL). The transmission died after 70k miles and the radio was on the fritz... otherwise a great truck.

stevbo200
12-28-07, 03:24 AM
My brothers 99 durango trans went and a few other minor problems. Has like 98k miles though.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-28-07, 03:26 AM
The transmission died after 70k miles and the radio was on the fritz... otherwise a great truck.

Wierd....wonder how that tranny went after only 70k? It's not irregular at all to see 215k + out of the original tranny one one of these bad boys.

ryannel2003
12-28-07, 03:30 AM
I have no idea, but the transmission went out on the '01 at 37k miles... we didn't have the extended warranty. Suffice to say, my mom wasn't to happy about that. But, my GMC dealership paid for half the cost of a new transmission.

Cyberdan3
12-28-07, 10:19 AM
My mom got a new Durango back in about 2000. I really liked it but it was a lease. I don't recall any problems except at the end of the lease we had a foul smell coming from the upper roof air vent. We thought something crawled up and died in there.... Chrysler vehicles are known for having terrible rear-ends and drive-line issues (mostly with the jeeps). But if you went with the yukon/suburban you better look to make sure the intake manifolds don't have a leak. That is their trademark as well as with the 3.1L and 3.4L engines :) I don't remember the mileage being that bad!! Good luck

LS1Mike
12-28-07, 10:28 AM
But if you went with the yukon/suburban you better look to make sure the intake manifolds don't have a leak. That is their trademark as well as with the 3.1L and 3.4L engines :) I don't remember the mileage being that bad!! Good luck

The Yukon/Suburban never came with a 3.1 or 3.4, that is a Car, Mini-Van, Equinox motor. The 04 and up motors have the updated gasket and Intake.

If he is looking that new he is looking at 4.8, 5.3, 6.0. All excellent motors. They started using them in 1999.
The older SBC didn't have a huge problem with leaks, and the new LSX based motor have a dry intake. In other word no fluid touches it.

They have the 4L60E, which can be hit and miss when they get up in the miles depending on what maintenance was done. Change the Fluid every 60,000 and throw a tranny cooler on there and you are good to go.

Cyberdan3
12-28-07, 11:08 AM
The Yukon/Suburban never came with a 3.1 or 3.4, that is a Car, Mini-Van, Equinox motor. The 04 and up motors have the updated gasket and Intake.

Never said Yukons had 3.1L and 3.4L engines. Just referring to the GM engines that they put in so many other vehicles that are known to have notorious problems.

hueterm
12-28-07, 12:08 PM
Smartest post of the day. Late '90s Yukon's/Tahoe's rock.

I figured you'd pick up on that one :-)

Cadillacboy
12-28-07, 01:24 PM
They're very massive trucks indeed !
Still, from my experience with other friends is that Ford F Series seem better choice

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-28-07, 03:30 PM
There's only two real big issues with the 5.7L Vortec Tahoes and Yukons that I've seen from my experience.

Intake Manifold Gaskets....$700-$800 to repair. Will leak coolant externally, may cause some driveability issues...*may*, and I mean *may* leak coolant into the oil. This isn't too common though, and you can still drive them with this issue for a good time if the leak isn't too severe.

Fuel Pumps...$700-$900. These Vortec V8's (5.7L and 7.4L) have really noisy fuel pumps, so if there's a good amount of noise (sounds like crickets on a hot summer night), that's normal, as 95% of these trucks I see at work have that noise, whether it be a Tahoe, Suburban or C/K. But it's rather common to see the fuel pumps on these go out and cause it to not start, but just crank excessively. There's really no warning to them going, they'll just take a dump on you and leave you stranded. But thankfully, it's not too hard to do, or to find parts for, so it's usually a one day repair. Other than those two issues...there's really not a lot that goes wrong with the '90s Tahoes

After working at a Chevy dealership for a year and a half, I'd definitely take a 5.7L Vortec over a 4.8, 5.3 or 6.0 Vortec...the new ones have more issues...fuel pressure regulators, instrument cluster malfunctions, etc etc, plus I just think the '90s trucks are so much better looking inside and out...

creeker
12-28-07, 04:47 PM
I'm basically a g.m. fan,but when I wanted a suv about 4 years ago,I researched the g.m. products and they had pretty poor reports,I ended up buying a 2001 ford explorer,which besides being hard on gas has not had any problems.

Jesda
12-28-07, 06:55 PM
Explorers are great. Despite being a little dull to drive, they're solid little trucks.

ryannel2003
12-28-07, 11:39 PM
There's only two real big issues with the 5.7L Vortec Tahoes and Yukons that I've seen from my experience.

Intake Manifold Gaskets....$700-$800 to repair. Will leak coolant externally, may cause some driveability issues...*may*, and I mean *may* leak coolant into the oil. This isn't too common though, and you can still drive them with this issue for a good time if the leak isn't too severe.

Fuel Pumps...$700-$900. These Vortec V8's (5.7L and 7.4L) have really noisy fuel pumps, so if there's a good amount of noise (sounds like crickets on a hot summer night), that's normal, as 95% of these trucks I see at work have that noise, whether it be a Tahoe, Suburban or C/K. But it's rather common to see the fuel pumps on these go out and cause it to not start, but just crank excessively. There's really no warning to them going, they'll just take a dump on you and leave you stranded. But thankfully, it's not too hard to do, or to find parts for, so it's usually a one day repair. Other than those two issues...there's really not a lot that goes wrong with the '90s Tahoes

After working at a Chevy dealership for a year and a half, I'd definitely take a 5.7L Vortec over a 4.8, 5.3 or 6.0 Vortec...the new ones have more issues...fuel pressure regulators, instrument cluster malfunctions, etc etc, plus I just think the '90s trucks are so much better looking inside and out...

My mom's '01 Yukon was a trashbag. It had constant problems with the transmission, the interior looked horrible after 2 years (it's cheap to begin with), and it wasn't as solid as the Suburban. The '05 Yukon XL has been great so far, but she only has 38k miles on it.

The '99, even with its issues, was a good truck. I'm sure it could have run to 200k miles no problem, but it was under a lease. The interior of the '99 held up the best too. Looked brand new after 3 years. My mom is constantly talking about the interior of my Camry; she says it looks better than the new Yukon's and Suburban's. I have to agree, my car looks good after 7 years of good use.

Explorer's are very nice SUV's. My aunt had two: '00 XLS and a '04 XLS. The '00 ran to 190k when the transmission finally died. The only issue, besides the transmission was the fuel pump dying. Otherwise, that's it. Was a great truck. The '04 has been a lot less reliable. She got in February of this year, and she's already had to buy a catalytic converter for it (she didn't get an extended warranty), and the heater fan is on the fritz. She's trading it next year for something more fuel efficient...

N0DIH
12-29-07, 03:12 PM
Avoid the 4.7L like the plague. Just do some research on sludge and the 4.7L... From what mech's have told me, very common problem, and very expensive fix.

5.2L/5.9L should be great, but the 4.7L isn't.

N0DIH
12-29-07, 03:26 PM
I have a 99 K2500 454 Suburban and love it.

I had a 96 K1500 350 Suburban and loved it too. (got wrecked, sold to get 454...)

Yup, the 5.7L's have more issues than the 454's, but there are lots more of them and honestly, I think they were trying to "be more cost conscious" knowing they were going to sell a ton more of them.

1. Injectors. early models, 96-97 got a mechanical tappet injector, and it failed early. Most got replaced with the 98-up system. Visually identical, the changes are under the intake manifold. Was officially recalled in California but not in the 49 states. My 96 never had an issue @ 235K miles. Ran GREAT.
2. Said intake gasket leaks. DIY for $50 or less, but paying sucks. Removing intake isn't very fun. Again, my 96 never had an issue. Ran great.
3. Gov Lok rear end, aka, G80 Locker (not posi!) with the 8.5in. The locking mechanism has some issues and would fall and get caught up and break the rear end gears. Bad news. Mine had already been replaced with a Eaton G80 Posi (G86 is the official truck RPO for the Posi, G80 is locking/open, no clutches, just locker below 20 mph, open above). Good rear when it works. 2500's have no issues like the 1500's....

Those are the main issues I remember/seen. Now, don't take this as "they are bad", they are NOT, these are like the 94-96 Fleetwoods/Impala's/Caprices, etc, they are WELL DOCUMENTED. Get into the other cars and you find the same things. Like Fords and A4LD and its variant transmissions. Problems, even rebuilts can't hold up, they are always problems. Once over 100K miles, it is on seriously borrowed time. Trans design sucks. It is just weak. Can't hold up. If you need a 4L core have one, with a 3L bell (easily changed), make me an offer!

I have no experience in the newer trucks, but the 99 K2500 454 is a lot easier to work on than the 350 in almost everything if you ask me.

2500's have larger brakes and hydroboost
1500's have smaller brakes and vacuum power. Not NEAR as strong as the 2500's. BIG difference. For me, paying the extra fuel is WELL WORTH it. And I can tow in OD in my 454, I have a 4L80E and towing 10K#'s is nothing for it. Easy work.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-29-07, 03:28 PM
N0DIH, you are the god of the Chevy small block and big block V8.

How much of a difference in mileage and power did you see between the Vortec 350 and Vortec 454?

N0DIH
12-29-07, 05:17 PM
Never thought anyone would call ME that! Ha! I am more into Pontiac V8's!

I have been working a lot on the Pontiac Engines Wiki lately. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontiac_V8_engine Yeah, I am a sicko in my spare time sometimes.... I didn't start the page, but so far probably contributed to 20-25% of the content on the page. Mainly the experimentals, Ram Air's, HO's and SD's. Still have a ton to post, but just getting the general framework going. Working on a Pontiac factory cam list as well.

Well, my 350 ran in the order of 13 (13.5 city was probably average, worst in cold weather lots of idling was 12.2 or so), and best of 17.4 on the highway lightly loaded no AC, heavily loaded on a long trip we were in the mid 15's.
The 454 on the other hand has something up, I haven't nailed it down, I am going to go out on a limb and replace the fuel pressure regulator, even though it seems ok to the pressure gauge, it honestly actually acts like the injectors are the wrong size. But they just run rich, exactly the same on both banks. 18.0% rich. Both, same, not 18.1% and 17.9%, always both 18.0%. I can't see a leaking injector do that exactly the same on both sides. And a FPR would likely leak and show on the fuel pressure gauge. E85 helps lean it out. O2 sensors didn't fix it.

So, it gets crappy mileage. I am getting around 10-11 city and 12.5-13.2 highway, running like this. So, with a friend of mine's 454 Burb, he was getting in the 14.5-15.5 range highway, and around 12-13 city/highway. I drove his a bit so I got some idea on it. I did a PCM tune from Jesse @ Wait4Me Performance and finally recently ran some 93 octane in it and MAN did that thing wake up!!! The tune alone helped a lot, but adding 93 octane it turned from running good to an animal, especially at WOT.... Sheesh! Torque Management still hurts and won't even let you spin the tires, but pulling 9-10K in a trailer, was effortless. It really tows WELL. Sure, a DMax would do better, but for the $$ (I paid $6400 for a top of the line model, LT with heated power leather, power dimming//heated outside mirrors, 3rd row seat, 454, K2500, roof rack, 4x4, Autotrac, AM/FM/CD/Cassette, with 119K miles)