Tell me what to look for on my car.


Asked by Apr 27, 2007 at 03:29 PM about the 2000 Chrysler Sebring JXi Convertible

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Hello.  I just purchased a black chrysler sebring convertible jxi.  It's a wonderful car! I have always been a little afraid of Dodge and Chrysler automobiles because of their engines.  I smell oil after I drive it and see just a little bit of oil on my driveway and garage after I drive it.  Should I be concerned in any way.  Also the check engine light is on.  When I took it to the local auto parts store..they checked it and it was because the gas cap wasn't on properly.  But it came back on when I first filled up the tank.  Is it normal that this car doesn't get good gas mileage?  Is there anything else that I should be aware of or look for?

Thanks so much.  My email address is

8 Answers


Hello dianeparsons-- Summer is getting closer, so no matter what we might fear about your new Chrysler Sebring convertible, it will be fun in warm weather. Actually, according to, there are no obvious flaws with this model. Anyway, I would suggest that you have a mechanic you can trust check it out for you. See if there are any small problems that can be repaired before they grow into larger ones. As for the check engine light, it is often more of a nuisance than anything else and if no codes were revealed on the OBDII computer you are okay. Good luck from Bovan.


Your oil problem could be as simple as a leaking valve cover gasket. This would allow oil to drip down onto the exhaust manifold and burn up, so you would smell it. You may also have a leaky oil pan gasket (same problem, oil on driveway and manifold). Not a huge problem. If the codes keep coming on for the Check Engine light, it may be related to your Evaporative Emissions system. I work for a Dodge dealer and the most common problems we see with the Check Engine light is a cracked hose which causes a vacuum leak, which turns the light on. These hoses can be tested at the dealership using a Miller specialty tool which will pressurize the Evap system and fill it with smoke, allowing for easy detection of leaks. Typically the repair is less than $200, depending if they have to remove the gas tank to access one of the hoses that runs across the top of it. If you don't have Emissions inspections in your state like we do in PA, the SES light is more of a nuisance than a genuine concern. However, we have ANNUAL emissions inspections here and no active or stored codes can be present at inspection time.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

Hey Diane! The leaks you mentioned could be minor- or not. I agree that an inspection by a mechanic is in order. It sounds like the car is new to you? The engine in your model is a Mitsubishi engine, and very reliable, if a tad under powered. I had a 2000 for 7 years and never had a problem, loved it. I did replace the gas cap with a locking one, which did not seal properly and the engine light came on. With the defective cap changed, the system requires several driving cycles to reset. (or the dealer can do it and charge you) I suggest using synthetic oil in the engine of all Chrysler products as some tend to produce sludge which can lead to engine failure. Whatever you decide, make sure the oil is changed regularly, it's amazing how easy it is to forget. Two other things that were an issue with the 2000 were body drains clogging and squeaky brakes. There are drain holes along each side between the front and rear wheel wells that allow rain water to escape. If excess pollen or dust clog them the water will collect and enter the floor areas inside the vehicle. They are easy to locate and clear with a paperclip or toothpick. My brakes never stopped making noise, even changing rotors and trying different pads, I just got used to it. The mileage should be in the 20's, the mitsu engine is small for such a heavy car, and works hard. Minimizing a/c use will really help, and having the wheel bearings and brakes checked for possible drag issues as well. I hope you enjoy many carefree miles- I have a 2006 model now, but I liked the 2000 JXi better!


I have a 2006 Sebring Chrylers and the emission light sometimes flashes off and on and sometimes stays on for a little while .... and during this time that the light is on the car feels like it will stall/slugish...

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

I had a 99' Sebring Convertible. Anyone that has an oil leak for this model year should find out where the leak is coming from. If it is a valve cover gasket, it could be leaking into some of the spark plug chambers flooding them. This will break down the wires and could cause bigger $$ problems. The cost to have valve cover gaskets replaced would be around $200...But you would want to replace the Oil Pressure Sending unit and Intake Manifold Gasket while they have it torn apart. That would be another $80. Timing chains also need to be replace every 100K miles. $700


I have a 1999 Chyrsler Sebring convertible JXI, the oil light only comes on when I am stopped or the RMP (?) is 2 or below. It also seems to only come on when the weather is cooler, is it the oil pump???

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

I had the same problem. Mine was a leaking oil pressure sensor. However, the problem repeated with the new sensor. Eventually the dealer figured out that the new connector they put on had a plugged vent hole, which allowed pressure to accumulate on the wrong side of the sensor diaphragm, giving a false low pressure indication. Once they took that plug out, the problem hasn't reappeared.


Its probably just valve cover gaskets. 20 bucks for quality ones! Once you replace them, clean all the oil you can from the leak and if you ever another, you'll see the new leak. Best car you can get for the money! They just wont stop running if you do the maintenance. I've had 4 of them! My sister got one of mine, girlfriend got one and I sold one to get a red one with lower miles! They're all still running today!!

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