2003 SRT DD

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JeremyJ
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:47 pm

You can see how filthy that part of the K-frame is, because the stock axle was also losing grease in that area. That mound is pretty new, though. I wiped it off after taking the picture, so I can check on it again to see if there's new buildup. It definitely looks like it's coming from the rear boot.

I'm getting super frustrated with this car already. There's nothing worse than a problem that just won't go away. I'm pretty sure the wheel bearing is bad on the passenger side, too. I don't have access to a press, so I'm probably going to have to take it somewhere to replace that. More money I don't have right now.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Thu Jan 31, 2019 7:33 pm

The front knuckles are still available new.

I don't know if they are complete with bearings/hubs or not. Worth calling to find out. The Caliber knuckles come with everything.



List price $200 5272487AC NEON; 5 STUD; LEFT; MANUAL TRANS; W/SRT-4 Wholesale Mopar $133.20

List price $190 5272486AC NEON; 5 STUD; RIGHT; MANUAL TRANS; W/SRT-4 Wholesale Mopar $126.54

For that cheap, you couldn't buy the parts and press it yourself. Of course that doesn't include shipping. :/

When the wheel bearings crapped in mom's Caliber, it was cheaper/easier/faster to just buy new knuckles.
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JeremyJ
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Fri Feb 01, 2019 1:51 pm

Everywhere I'm searching shows the knuckle without the bearing or hub in it. That would be a killer deal if it was assembled, though.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:10 pm

Yeah I never seen a knuckle with the hub and bearing brand new. Sorry you are having issues with your car man. But the older these cars get the more issues to face. Especially if it has high miles like yours, lots of original parts that need replaced.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Fri Feb 01, 2019 7:50 pm

JeremyJ wrote:
Fri Feb 01, 2019 1:51 pm
Everywhere I'm searching shows the knuckle without the bearing or hub in it. That would be a killer deal if it was assembled, though.
The pictures don't show it, but neither did the Caliber illustrations. But it has "5 Stud" in the description. Like I said, it's worth calling a knowledgeable parts person to confirm, or have them find out for sure. Basically what I did for the Caliber knuckles. I wasn't ordering them until I knew for sure they were assy's vs the raw part.

If they are assy's, it is a very smokin' deal.

IIRC, the Caliber knuckles were a touch over $200 each.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by ducktapetg » Sat Feb 02, 2019 11:25 am

Keep your head up! You don't find neons, never mind srt4s, in this good of shape anymore. IMO, its worth the headache knowing it is in great shape.

Did you check your intermediate shaft's bearing while you were doing the axles? Mind torn from the mount causing it to wiggle. That doesn't solve the drivers side issue. Also, I would imagine any shop can do a wheel bearing for cheap if you bring them the knuckle. If you could get access to a press, the bearing is $25 and there is a great how-to somewhere on how to do it. I mean, if you were going to drop the money on a knuckle, you could buy a shop press (craigslist/harbor freight) and replace it for about the same cost. Just an option.

Keep it up though! Car looks great (and I would keep it as stock as possible, there aren't many left)
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:21 pm

Now that the snow has mostly melted here, I drove the car for the first time in about a month. The noise that I suspect is a front right wheel bearing, has gotten really loud. It gets noticeably worse when I turn left. It sounds like a brake pad dragging, but doesn't change when I hit the brakes. It oscillates in proportion to the speed of the car. I don't really want to drive the car any more until I get that fixed. I'm feeling too unmotivated to do it myself, so I'm contemplating taking it somewhere to have it done for me. The dealership wants a little over $440 to do it and I don't know of any local mechanics that I trust. I get a bonus this month and I think I'm going to just bite the bullet and take it to the dealership. I can have them check on everything else for me while it's in there, like those new axles and the intermediate shaft.

In more positive news, the vibration that I was feeling after the axle install seems to be magically righting itself. It's barely noticeable at all anymore. I think I can live with that.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:24 pm

The vibration could have been more related to the wheel bearing. Now that it is getting louder, the bearing may have enough slop that it isn't so notchy on the bearing balls.

I just recently had a right axle shaft go out on my Subie, and a week later the left wheel bearing. The wheel bearing was exactly how you describe it. No growling like you usually get, just like you said, a brake rubbing, kind of like the pads worn to metal sound.

Fortunately, Subaru didn't go full retard with press in bearings, so both jobs were each done in under an hour, with no real challenges. The wheel bearing was a cheapo eBay unit, but it lasted 100,000 miles, so I guess I can't bitch too much.

Chrysler needed a razor bowtie shoved in deep for going back to press in bearings. Can't blame Daimler for that one, as much as I would like to. :D
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Mar 18, 2019 12:14 pm

I finally installed the rear coilovers this weekend. Install went alright. I got a set of ratcheting wrenches recently and I don't know how I've lived without them before now. They helped a lot for this install. I was going to install my Prothane rear end links, only to find out that the car already had a set. Kind of a bonus. I'll just sell my newer set that I took off the R/T. I set the camber plates to -1 all the way around, to avoid rubbing the fenders. It worked. I took it for an aggressive drive and there was no sign of rubbing. Just a howling wheel bearing.

Here's a shot of the dirty car on BC's. No more extreme rake!

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I'm going to take it to have the wheel bearing replaced shortly. Then I'm going to tackle that boost leak so I can make some real power.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by Midnight_Rider » Mon Mar 18, 2019 12:41 pm

I'm envious that you were able to do the installation yourself. I paid a Chrysler technician to install my Mopar Performance ones in his private garage.

Looks good though. C'mon good weather, let's get these cars some road time! :gears:
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Mon Mar 18, 2019 1:57 pm

very nice, perfect ride height imo

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Tue Apr 09, 2019 1:32 pm

Brand new battery died. The car has a parasitic drain happening somewhere. I have a friend who's an electrical expert coming to check it out on Friday. Hopefully he can find the source of the drain. I also have an appointment on the 23rd to have the wheel bearing replaced. Hopefully I'll be able to drive it again soon.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:42 pm

Yikes, hopefully you or he finds the drain. Does the car have any aftermarket electrical crap in it? Usually tends to be the culprit. Never hear od these cars having a drain on them stock.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Thu Apr 11, 2019 4:21 pm

It has an aftermarket stereo in it with a disc changer, an amp, and satellite radio. I unplugged the disc changer a while back, but that obviously didn't help. We'll see if it's draining anything tomorrow. I don't really like the stereo, so changing it out won't bother me at all.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Sat Apr 13, 2019 4:42 pm

So as it turns out, the battery and alternator are fine. No parasitic drain. It was a faulty starter. It’s been replaced and the car starts right up again. Now it just needs a wheel bearing.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Sun Apr 14, 2019 1:34 am

Nice!

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Apr 15, 2019 12:11 pm

I had an epiphany yesterday, regarding the wheel bearing noise. I was certain it was coming from the driver's side front, but when I jack the car up and spin the wheel, it's silent and there's no resistance at all. So I jacked up the rear this time and spun the rear driver's side wheel. Bingo. Intermittent rubbing noise and rolling resistance. It almost sounds like the parking brake came apart or something. I'm going to pull the disc off and check out the brake setup before I write it off as a wheel bearing. The parking brake still works fine, but it's worth a look. There's no side to side play in the wheel at all.

Also this:

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I'm going to change the ODO screen to red soon, so it matches the gauges better.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by MyNeonSaysHi » Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:45 pm

That mileage tho. :) one and a bunch of sevens! Looks good. Always wanted to do the LED bulb swap but it is a hit or miss seen ones that turn out bad and half the number is lit up or something. Going to keep mine stock. That looks really good though no fading at all.

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Tue Apr 16, 2019 4:27 pm

I thought the mileage was worth a picture. The gauges light up surprisingly well. No hot spots. It was like that when I bought the car. If it was up to me, I'd have left them stock. I think the green looks good. However, the HVAC matches the gauges and he did it right, so I'm just going to leave it as is.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:07 pm

I think my '01's passenger rear bearing went at ~172,000, so....

But the rest have 210,000 on them. Go figure.

The '99 has ~270,000 something on all of them. Friggin show off. :lol:
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:23 pm

I was just relieved because the rear bearings are a bolt in piece that I can do at home. If the parking brake came apart, I can fix that too.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Fri Apr 19, 2019 5:52 pm

Yeah rear bearings are pretty simple. There is my how to, if you need torque specs...
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:14 pm

I took the rear brake apart and everything looked fine. The bearing spun without noise or binding, too. I guess maybe it is the front bearing after all. Maybe. I'm just not sure at this point. It's frustrating.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by jonnymopar » Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:36 am

By the time I got rid of my Neon, I had replaced 3 of the 4 wheel bearings. Shockingly, the driver's front was the only original one left. With all the exit ramp jackassery that car saw in my ownership, I can't believe that's the one still good at ~220k miles.

If you end up replacing a front wheel bearing, make sure your strut-to-body ground wires are in place and in good condition. The early turbo Dodges used to waste front wheel bearings because of static electricity before those wires were added.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by occasional demons » Sun Apr 21, 2019 8:19 pm

My '01 hasn't had the static grounds since I bought it in 2004 with 69,000 miles. They were broken when I got it. I repaired them, but they only lasted maybe 10,000 miles before the wire broke again. My '99 doesn't have them either, and it has 270,070 on the originals.

They should have stayed with the flat braided ground straps and not a piece of heavy strand copper wire, with insulation to hold salt and moisture. but I'm sure they were cheaper somehow.

IDK, it seemed to be more of a 1970's/1980's issue.

It also doesn't make sense that they only put them on the front, and not the rear. But the front bearings were the ones that had issues on the early FWD cars. The rear bearings were old school tapered bearings though, not unit bearings they use now. But if that was the issue, then why not ground straps on the rear?

My dad's '78 Omni ate front bearings at least every 20 to 30 thousand miles, and we even added an extra ground strap, so I'm not sure static arcing was actually the issue.

When they went to bolt in bearings, I was so happy, no alignments or PITA bearing changes! Then they really made me sad when they cut costs and downgraded the newer cars. Getting rid of the tapered rear bearings was a good move though. It seemed they were always needing packed and tightened up. It was getting old chasing rear bearing slop in all of our FWD cars. Having to pay $50 to $60 for a bearing after 170,000 plus miles is worth not having to pack a bearing every 10,000 miles or less, just in time spent alone.

FWIW, my '92.5 Sundance Duster didn't have the straps, and I bought it new. Neither did the '93 my wife had, or the '94 Shadow I had.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Mon Apr 22, 2019 5:23 pm

I'm dropping it off at the dealership tomorrow, so I'll let them sort it out. Hopefully I can afford the bill when I go to pick it up!
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Fri Apr 26, 2019 11:24 am

I got the car back from the dealer and the noise isn't completely gone. All they did was remove the brake and axle nut, clean everything, then re-torque it all to spec. The noise is waaaaay quieter than it was before, but it's definitely still there. I'm at a loss at this point. They charged me $200 for that.
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Sun Apr 28, 2019 1:49 pm

I got fed up with the stereo that was in the car. It wouldn't connect to bluetooth and it had a bunch of attachments that I didn't want to use. Here's what I removed (and I didn't get all of it):

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The cables for the disc changer and satellite radio are still buried under the carpet. I'll get to them eventually. I installed the Pioneer head unit that I had in the R/T. I ran the bluetooth mic inside the upper left vent, instead of sticking it on the steering column. It looks cleaner, but I don't know how well it'll work until I take some calls.

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I got the buttons to match the LED dash pretty well. This is always hard to photograph, so it doesn't look as good in the pictures as it does in person. I also swapped out the red LED in the boost gauge to a white one.

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Image
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The numbers on the boost gauge are slightly more green than the rest of the dash, which is going to drive me nuts.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Sun Apr 28, 2019 5:59 pm

I also attempted the water leak from under the cowl fix that I found on the SRT Forums a while back. There’s a metal seam under the cowl, on the passenger side that wasn’t sealed well from the factory. I pulled the cowl back and caked that seam with silicone. It had visible gaps in the factory seal, so I’m pretty sure that’s where water was getting in. It’s supposed to be dry for a few days, so I won’t get to test it for a little while.

https://www.srtforums.com/forums/f75/ho ... 202/?amp=1
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Re: 2003 SRT DD

Post by JeremyJ » Tue Apr 30, 2019 4:50 pm

JeremyJ wrote:
Fri Apr 26, 2019 11:24 am
I got the car back from the dealer and the noise isn't completely gone. All they did was remove the brake and axle nut, clean everything, then re-torque it all to spec. The noise is waaaaay quieter than it was before, but it's definitely still there. I'm at a loss at this point. They charged me $200 for that.
I dropped the car back at the dealership and told them to look at it again. Hopefully they can properly diagnose it this time. I'm not feeling particularly optimistic about it, but we'll see what they come up with.
02 base -> 05 SRT ACR -> 96 sedan -> 99 R/T coupe -> 02 R/T -> 03 SRT

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