dodge caravan intermittent dash gauge problem

1998 Dodge Grand Caravan SE with 3.3L engine.
Dashboard instrumentation occasionally goes dead (all gauges go to zero
or depowered position).
This happened again a couple of days ago, and when the dash came back
alive (within a few seconds) the "Service Engine Soon" light was on.
Retrieved OBD code "P1698"
Is this enough info to identify a likely cause? Your help would be much appreciated.
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I had exactly the same problem last year on my 98 Grand Voyager. I opened up the fuse and relay center under the hood and cleaned it. It was quite dirty. Seemed to improve things considerably. The cluster problem has happened since, but far less often (and so far not at all this spring). Indeed, the entire van seemed to run better after I did the cleaning.
Hope this helps.
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Ether Jones wrote:

I came up with "No CCD Message From TCM", TCM is Transmission control module, CCD refers to the interface that allows the instrument cluster, body computer, engine computer, and transmission computer to communicate.
I recently had problems with my 1998 Grand Voyager, 3.3L engine. I also had the dead dash, intermittantly, but mainly my van either wouldn't crank at all or would start but die if it did decided to crank. My problem turned out to be the engine computer, one from a junkyard fixed it. I searched the internet for info on my problem, and saved useful info which may help you. Here's info on how the various computers work together:
"There are a number of computers in these cars in a network, they communicate continuously with each other over a communications bus, a twisted pair of wires called the CCD bus. The instrument cluster, with the odometer has a microprocessor within it as well. The cluster is told what mileage to display by the BCM (Body Control Module) The BCM communicates with the (PCM) power control module. This is the mother computer located on the driver's side under the hood next to the fuse box. The BCM also communicates with the TCM (transmission control module) located in a similar position as the PCM under the hood on the passenger side. In order to display the correct mileage, the BCM (located drivers side under the dash) must get the correct info from the PCM and the TCM. "
Another thing I learned: the dash has built-in diagnostics. Here's info on that:
"The following is derived from the '97 factory service manual: The instrument cluster can self test and give you some diagnostics. With the ignition switch off, hold down the odo trip and reset buttons. While holding these buttons down, turn the ignition switch to on and keep holding the buttons down. Continue to hold in the buttons until the word codE appears in the odo window, it should take about 5 seconds. If there are problems, you will get trouble codes. If there is no problem, you will get a 999 code for end of test. When chec-0 is displayed, the display will dim down. If brightness doesn't change there is a problem. Codes: 110 memory fault in cluster 111 calibration fault in cluster 905 not CCD bus message from TCM, 921 odo fault from BCM, 940 no CCD bus message from PCM. When chec-1 is displayed the gauges will move through their calibration points. When CHEC-2 is displayed, the odo digits will light sequentially. Chec-3 is the PRND3L check. "
Another thing I learned is that many people have had instrument cluster problems caused by bad solder joints on the connectors where the wire harnesses connect to the PC board. This could be the cause of your problem. Info on that:
Symptoms: 1. Put key in, van starts and there is no trouble. 2. Put key in, turn key and have no power to fuel gauge, speedometer, tach, temperature gauge, gear indicator, odometer. All the indicators in the top panel: check engine, ABS, Alarm, etc. function properly; van will "start" but dies the instant I let go of the key. 3. Put key in, no gauges, same as #2, van starts and continues to run and all gauges come to life (this is the least frequent) 4. Driving along and lose power to the gauges. Van continues to run without problem - just don't have any idea how fast I'm going. Sometimes the gauges come back to life while I'm driving.
The fixes: Pound on the dash on both sides of the steering wheel at once. Hard. Does it fix it? Good chance it's a cracked solder joint. Info on fixing that:
"Mine would also do the dash on / dash off while driving, but as you can see from the posts it also had the starting problem, anyway...., back in the beginning of October I went ahead and pulled the cluster out (very simple, maybe took 15 min), on the back of the circuit board of the cluster where the main connector solders on to the board there are perhaps 12 solder connections for the plug pins, people had mentioned to look for cracked or cold solders at those locations especially at the black wire connections (there are two) I didnt find any cracked solders however I decided to re-solder them anyway when I heated one of the black wire pin connections the cold solder joint was exposed, for all intents and purposes it was barely even making contact, it was more of a dome of solder, I finished soldering it back up and reinstalled the cluster, to date i have not had any repeats of either the starting or on / off of the cluster (knock on wood)."
Note: that's the combined wisdom of a bunch of people, sorry I didn't copy their names to give credit. Hope this helps with your problem. -Paul
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Let me format that a liitle better and repost: (BTW, I used a free text editor call TextMorph to fix that with a couple of mouse clicks)
Ether Jones wrote: > 1998 Dodge Grand Caravan SE with 3.3L engine.

depowered position). > This happened again a couple of days ago, and when the dash came back > alive (within a few seconds) the "Service Engine Soon" light was on. > Retrieved OBD code "P1698" > Is this enough info to identify a likely cause? Your help would be > much appreciated.
I came up with "No CCD Message From TCM", TCM is Transmission control module, CCD refers to the interface that allows the instrument cluster, body computer, engine computer, and transmission computer to communicate.
I recently had problems with my 1998 Grand Voyager, 3.3L engine. I also had the dead dash, intermittantly, but mainly my van either wouldn't crank at all or would start but die if it did decided to crank. My problem turned out to be the engine computer, one from a junkyard fixed it. I searched the internet for info on my problem, and saved useful info which may help you. Here's info on how the various computers work together:
"There are a number of computers in these cars in a network, they communicate continuously with each other over a communications bus, a twisted pair of wires called the CCD bus. The instrument cluster, with the odometer has a microprocessor within it as well. The cluster is told what mileage to display by the BCM (Body Control Module) The BCM communicates with the (PCM) power control module. This is the mother computer located on the driver's side under the hood next to the fuse box. The BCM also communicates with the TCM (transmission control module) located in a similar position as the PCM under the hood on the passenger side. In order to display the correct mileage, the BCM (located drivers side under the dash) must get the correct info from the PCM and the TCM. "
Another thing I learned: the dash has built-in diagnostics. Here's info on that:
"The following is derived from the '97 factory service manual: The instrument cluster can self test and give you some diagnostics. With the ignition switch off, hold down the odo trip and reset buttons. While holding these buttons down, turn the ignition switch to on and keep holding the buttons down. Continue to hold in the buttons until the word codE appears in the odo window, it should take about 5 seconds. If there are problems, you will get trouble codes. If there is no problem, you will get a 999 code for end of test. When chec-0 is displayed, the display will dim down. If brightness doesn't change there is a problem. Codes: 110 memory fault in cluster 111 calibration fault in cluster 905 not CCD bus message from TCM, 921 odo fault from BCM, 940 no CCD bus message from PCM. When chec-1 is displayed the gauges will move through their calibration points. When CHEC-2 is displayed, the odo digits will light sequentially. Chec-3 is the PRND3L check. "
Another thing I learned is that many people have had instrument cluster problems caused by bad solder joints on the connectors where the wire harnesses connect to the PC board. This could be the cause of your problem. Info on that:
Symptoms: 1. Put key in, van starts and there is no trouble. 2. Put key in, turn key and have no power to fuel gauge, speedometer, tach, temperature gauge, gear indicator, odometer. All the indicators in the top panel: check engine, ABS, Alarm, etc. function properly; van will "start" but dies the instant I let go of the key. 3. Put key in, no gauges, same as #2, van starts and continues to run and all gauges come to life (this is the least frequent) 4. Driving along and lose power to the gauges. Van continues to run without problem - just don't have any idea how fast I'm going. Sometimes the gauges come back to life while I'm driving.
The fixes: Pound on the dash on both sides of the steering wheel at once. Hard. Does it fix it? Good chance it's a cracked solder joint. Info on fixing that:
"Mine would also do the dash on / dash off while driving, but as you can see from the posts it also had the starting problem, anyway...., back in the beginning of October I went ahead and pulled the cluster out (very simple, maybe took 15 min), on the back of the circuit board of the cluster where the main connector solders on to the board there are perhaps 12 solder connections for the plug pins, people had mentioned to look for cracked or cold solders at those locations especially at the black wire connections (there are two) I didnt find any cracked solders however I decided to re-solder them anyway when I heated one of the black wire pin connections the cold solder joint was exposed, for all intents and purposes it was barely even making contact, it was more of a dome of solder, I finished soldering it back up and reinstalled the cluster, to date i have not had any repeats of either the starting or on / off of the cluster (knock on wood)."
Note: that's the combined wisdom of a bunch of people, sorry I didn't copy their names to give credit. Hope this helps with your problem. -Paul
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i have always seen that code with a bad insturment cluster or bad connection to it
Ether Jones wrote:

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I had the same problem with my 97. The computers take lots of power. Have your battery tested to make sure it good and strong and make sure the connections are clean. If you have the factory battery connections cut the off and put new ones on. I did all this and haven't had this problem since. No more codes either.

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