2001 Dodge Durango - Center Console Button broken

Posted on Friday, October 4th, 2002 at 12:00am CDT by 6cd1f0c6

Company: 2001 Dodge Durango - Center Console Button broken

Category: Other

Complaints.com received the following consumer message on October 2, 2002:


RE: 2001 Dodge Durango - Center Console Button broken

My wife and I purchased a new 2001 Dodge Durango in August last year. While testing the demonstration model on the dealer's lot we were checking all of the buttons and switches. When I depressed the center console button and released it the button and the tension coil spring inside the button flew across my lap and landed in the map pocket on the driver's side door panel.

Perhaps it was just a bad button we thought. About 2 months after we had purchased our Durango the exact same thing happened with our vehicle. I took the vehicle to the dealer and they order a replacement button and installed it. This one lasted about a year, but in late August 2002 the button failed again. I took the vehicle to the dealer to order another replacement button and asked if many other customers were having this same difficulty. I got the 'deer in the headlights" stare. "No. we really aren't aware of any problem with this button." After approximately 4 weeks and still no call from the dealership to tell me the replacement part had arrived, I called them. Apparently the replacement button assemblies are on "back order". How interesting!!! Either I have been extremely unlucky with these buttons or the buttons are really poorly designed. I'm not a plastics engineer, but I do know that cheap plastic softens at elevated temperatures and if that plastic is under pressure it will tend to bend away from the source of pressure.

The basic design of the button is a cylider with three small hooked plastic prongs at one end. The tension spring fits over the prongs and this assembly is inserted into a hole on the side of the center console. At the end of this hole is a recessed ring. When the button is pushed to the end of the hole the hooked plastic prongs engage the recessed ring and keep the button in place. When the new buttons are installed the prongs are essentially straight.

When the buttons fail, the prongs have a distinct curve to them. If I were engineering this I would either install some sort of keeper pin or use a high temperature thermo-plastic for the prong portion of the button (or here's an idea, how about metal??) so that this assembly would be unaffected by the temperatures encountered inside a vehicle on a hot summer day. I'm just wondering if anyone else has experienced this problem? Unless the button design is changed I'll just plan on replacing the button assembly about once a year. In fairness, I must say that with the exception of the button problem (which appears, at this point, to be a chronic problem) we have not had any other trouble with our Durango and we have been very pleased with it overall. Sincerely,

Dave Ross

1 Comment

5c703ab2, 2011-06-07, 04:30AM CDT

I have a 2002 Durango with the same center console button problem. I can't find where to get a replacement without going through the dealer and paying through the nose

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