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I had only one refresh this winter, and it was nothing like those I had last year. It happened about 2 months after the fill-up and lasted my entire drive- about 40 minutes. I consider that problem resolved.
 

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I bought a 2019 2 weeks ago and it has been running in refresh mode since. I'm nearly at 500 miles now. I've been reading through these forums for the last week and trying out the suggestions. But if you haven't had any issues and you live in MD as I do then it can't be just this cold weather. I would hate to have to take it to the dealer because they seemed completely clueless about the car when I bought it.
 

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Hi RefreshMode4life,

Once you get the hybrid out of refresh mode you will have to change your screen name. Despite what others have written here, there are problems with the fuel and oil refresh mode. (That is, it is not a *perceived problem*, it is a real problem). The first problem is that the van will inappropriately going into the mode. The second problem is that the exit criteria for the mode is also faulty. So we have a van that goes into FROM when it is not supposed to, and once in the mode, never exits.
This being said, I think I can help you.

1) Please, please, please bring the car into your dealer. This will alert Chrysler that there is a problem with FROM that needs to be addressed.

2) If your dealer is like mine, they will have no clue. BUT, the very fact that it is in the dealership service bay may solve the problem. It did for me. My theory is that one of the exit criteria for FROM is dependent upon ambient air temperature. In New England, it really hasn't gotten much above 40F for the last month. Certainly when I drive in the early AM or late evening, it is usually in the 30's F. I had my new 2019 cycle into FROM and not exit the mode for 2 days straight. I got frustrated and took it in (they accommodated me same day since I had *just bought* the van there.) I got a loaner and the next day the service tech put it on the lift, started it (was still in FROM), and per his report, 5 minutes later the FROM cleared out. He did nothing else to the van. I came to pick up the van and my technician was very nice and we chatted a bit. He brought me into the service bay and I noticed the ambient temperature was (I estimate) upper 60's or possible even low 70's (all the technicians had on short sleeves, I was hot in my jacket). He submitted a case with Chrysler Engineering but I have not heard anything back yet. I drove back on electric power.

So far has stayed out of FROM, but my plan is to bring it back into the service bay if it enters into this mode again.

Please keep us updated. This forum is more helpful than any dealership
 

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@RefreshMode4life, maybe your van was sitting on the lot for a while. Did you let it run until you had no more than 1/4 of the tank and refuel?
I had another occurrence starting from Friday and continuing until Monday, when it sucked the tank dry. (Van blinked "the turtle" and continued driving on the battery alone). I refilled the tank and no more refresh. My last fill up was almost 2 months ago, so I don't consider it a problem. The whole behavior is different from the 15 minutes a day runs I experienced before.
 

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My van was just in FORM for a couple of days. I was at about at a 3/8 tank when it started. I ran it below 1/4 and then filled it up. It stopped FORM the next time I started up the van. After sitting for about 4 hours I started it back up and lo and behold FORM was active again. This time it ran for about 20 mins and I haven't had it back for the last 24 hours. I've filled up every couple weeks or so between 300-500 miles per tank so there is no way that it's getting old. I also use the remote start 5 days a week first thing in the am so the kids aren't freezing on the way to school (it's sometimes near impossible to convince my 3 year old of appropriate wear in 12 degree weather!)

Another issue that I have with the mode is that it shuts the engine down and fires it right back up over and over again while I'm sitting idling, even while driving. The whole car starts shaking when it does this. It can't be right. If it is in FORM shouldn't the engine not shut off period until I turn off the car or it exits the mode? I recorded it sitting in a parking lot yesterday:

:confused:
 

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Apparently there is more than one reason for the unscheduled FORM. In my case it happened because I park underground with no GPS signal. Without the signal, the van loses the calendar (it syncs time to GPS), can't determine the number of day since the last refuel and starts the FORM. The ICE stops after the GPS signal lock is reacquired. FCA actually installed a data logger in my van to troubleshoot the problem. When they mentioned the loss of GPS as the reason for the FORM, me and everyone else on the forum thought it was a BS because there is no apparent connection between the two, in the end I have to admit that I was wrong. They fixed that bug, but there are other ones out there. Everybody should compare notes and find common patterns.
 

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Clearly there are still FORM issues, but my experience is similar to Stop-Eject. I had the recall done in mid January or so, and my incidents of FORM dropped off significantly. During the winter I was experience a FORM ever 2-3 weeks. I went about 6 weeks after the recall work with no FORM. I tried my pre-recall method (see my prior posts) of clearing the FORM and it didn't work. The next day, it cleared on it's own during normal driving with temps in the teens. The recall appears to have had a positive effect on my van in relation to FORM.
 

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Thanks All - Here is what I have tried:

- waiting for the tank to reach 90% empty before refueling (yellow gas light was on)
-Resetting the oil life indicator
-getting oil temp above 205

When I bought the car, it had around 25 miles on it, 8 of which were electric. Since then I have driven over 500 miles. According to the driving history, around 5 miles were driven in electric ... so at some point during one day (80 miles were driven that day) FORM must have switched off. but that was it, 5 miles out of 500 driven without FROM. I have not been able to duplicate the effect.

The car may have stored in a covered garage at the dealership, but it was definitely out in the elements 2 days before I bought it. The original 8 miles of EV time on the van must have been when they drove the car from storage to the dealership.

My van is parked in the garage at work most weekdays, but I doubt that is the cause of my FORM because aside from the random 5 miles driven in EV, it has never driven out of FORM. I will try to take it to the dealership ... hopefully, they have a heated garage so I can give that theory a shot.
 

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Thanks All - Here is what I have tried:

- waiting for the tank to reach 90% empty before refueling (yellow gas light was on)
-Resetting the oil life indicator
-getting oil temp above 205
I’ve had no issues with FORM not completing in a normal matter. However this winter I experienced the most persistent refresh yet.

I had FORM continue every time the engine was started for 2 weeks. If I could remain in electric mode it didn’t force FORM. So I decided to clear it with a good drive.

It took 40min after the oil was over 85c(185f) driving. I drove at a constant speed (and didn’t have to beat on my vehicle and it cleared fine.

During this I noted oil temps at 105c. I believe I experienced a spark plug maintenance version of FORM which needs to bake the carbon off the plug tips to prevent fouling.

Haven’t used fuel since.
 

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I’ve had no issues with FORM not completing in a normal matter. However this winter I experienced the most persistent refresh yet.

I had FORM continue every time the engine was started for 2 weeks. If I could remain in electric mode it didn’t force FORM. So I decided to clear it with a good drive.

It took 40min after the oil was over 85c(185f) driving. I drove at a constant speed (and didn’t have to beat on my vehicle and it cleared fine.

During this I noted oil temps at 105c. I believe I experienced a spark plug maintenance version of FORM which needs to bake the carbon off the plug tips to prevent fouling.

Haven’t used fuel since.
I think Chrysler needs to provide some more detailed documentation on this. We have a vehicle that is designed to run efficiently on electric power most of the time yet it unexpectedly burns gas whenever it wants to and however long it wants to. We effectively have a computer onboard that can tell us when we’re in FORM so why not tell us at the same time what the exit criteria are?
 

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I think Chrysler needs to provide some more detailed documentation on this. We have a vehicle that is designed to run efficiently on electric power most of the time yet it unexpectedly burns gas whenever it wants to and however long it wants to. We effectively have a computer onboard that can tell us when we’re in FORM so why not tell us at the same time what the exit criteria are?
They kind of have. But I agree they should have it in the manual.

The problem with forums is that few search for knowledge. People tend to prefer just asking for help.

As @ipconfig shared from a Facebook post, apparently an engineer addressed the topic in detail (post #4 of this very own thread).

I’ll attach it for convenience.

“More info on Fuel and oil refresh mode. There are 3 factors affecting this mode:
First is if the fuel is older than 90 days, adding at least 16 litres will recalculate the fuels freshness to stop this mode.
Second is oil contamination. It calculates its concentration or conditions. If the engine has not run in a given time it will run until oil reaches 70 deg Celsius (158 def F) or 5 minutes minimum. If the engine has been running but has reached its calculated contamination that it has to run for 20 minutes or oil has to reach 80 deg Celsius (176). If it gets contaminated enough it will ask for an oil change.
Third: Spark plug maintenance. The spark plug is calculated to be contaminated, and needs to run the engine to clean the spark plug. Short trips cause this need. It needs highway speed to clean, 20 min and +80 C engine coolant. It can take several trips to complete.
Running the engine for 20 min above coolant temp of 80 C will reduce these refresh modes and one condition may be triggered even after one has been met, but it may exit more than one mode at the same time.”
 

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They kind of have. But I agree they should have it in the manual.

The problem with forums is that few search for knowledge. People tend to prefer just asking for help.

As @ipconfig shared from a Facebook post, apparently an engineer addressed the topic in detail (post #4 of this very own thread).

I’ll attach it for convenience.

“More info on Fuel and oil refresh mode. There are 3 factors affecting this mode:
First is if the fuel is older than 90 days, adding at least 16 litres will recalculate the fuels freshness to stop this mode.
Second is oil contamination. It calculates its concentration or conditions. If the engine has not run in a given time it will run until oil reaches 70 deg Celsius (158 def F) or 5 minutes minimum. If the engine has been running but has reached its calculated contamination that it has to run for 20 minutes or oil has to reach 80 deg Celsius (176). If it gets contaminated enough it will ask for an oil change.
Third: Spark plug maintenance. The spark plug is calculated to be contaminated, and needs to run the engine to clean the spark plug. Short trips cause this need. It needs highway speed to clean, 20 min and +80 C engine coolant. It can take several trips to complete.
Running the engine for 20 min above coolant temp of 80 C will reduce these refresh modes and one condition may be triggered even after one has been met, but it may exit more than one mode at the same time.”
If there are three criteria to trigger FORM (fuel, oil, or spark plug) seems like FCA would have been better in the message notification to say for which specific one (or combination) the ICE is running. It would save a lot of heartache to understand that the ICE is not running for the same thing repeatedly, but is running for different maintenance criteria (and running for different time lengths, depending on oil and coolant temperature, as well).
 

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There are people here where none of those 3 criteria (fuel, oil, or spark plug) would seem to apply, mostly due to their vans being so brand new... I can't imaging the oil getting fouled or condensed with only several hundred miles on the odometer. Same for the spark plugs getting fouled. Too new... Still does not make sense.
My bet is on a (several?) software coding errors.
 

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Have people experienced the issue when in FORM that when stoped and idling in gear the engine constantly cycles off and on? That is the most annoying part. And it can't be good to be doing that over and over. It does the same thing when driving through the neighborhood at low speed also.
 

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There are people here where none of those 3 criteria (fuel, oil, or spark plug) would seem to apply, mostly due to their vans being so brand new... I can't imaging the oil getting fouled or condensed with only several hundred miles on the odometer. Same for the spark plugs getting fouled. Too new... Still does not make sense.
My bet is on a (several?) software coding errors.
There was s GPS glitch where the Van gets time/date from the satellites and parking underground or in a no service area would cause the FORM. This was due to the day counter since last FORM.

@stop-eject was kind enough to have his vehicle datalogged to discover this. Disabling “get time/date from GPS” in uConnect may help in poor coverage areas.

Within 500miles is about right for winter. Engines collect moisture practically always. Only when the oil is above 80c does it BEGIN To steam out moisture and then your PCV system will work to clear it. A Combustion by product is h20.

So every time the engine fires up, its adding water. This winter I have had FORM 3 times and the Summer before was only once.

I should count how many engine preheats happen before it needs to clear the water.

Spark plugs collect carbon from low combustion temperatures and are designed to have a heat range choosen for the way the vehicle is used so the tip can stay in the self cleaning sweet spot.. (which works like your ovens self cleaning mode). Short trips and brief fire ups add carbon to the plug tips.. there’s no way to pick a heat range that covers the warm up process or short trips useage without causing damage during regular useage.

500miles IMO can be acceptable for FORM if you have used hybrid mode occasionally or your van is starting up to preheat the battery in the mornings due to winter - If that 500 is all electric miles then it still might be by time from last FORM, which in the case of a new vehicle is never, so some arbitrary activation date stored at production? At which rate the FORM should be completed, and the subsequent FORM monitored and judged.

Then you have a known datapoint.
 

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There are people here where none of those 3 criteria (fuel, oil, or spark plug) would seem to apply, mostly due to their vans being so brand new... I can't imaging the oil getting fouled or condensed with only several hundred miles on the odometer. Same for the spark plugs getting fouled. Too new... Still does not make sense.
My bet is on a (several?) software coding errors.
The problem with 'new' is some of these PacHys rolled off the line sometime ago. Let's face it, with the current low gas prices, PacHys haven't been exactly flying off dealer lots. So even though technically new, enough time may have elapsed for FORM to kick in, even on a low-mile PacHy.

Or maybe it's software coding errors...:wink2:
 

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The problem with 'new' is some of these PacHys rolled off the line sometime ago. Let's face it, with the current low gas prices, PacHys haven't been exactly flying off dealer lots. So even though technically new, enough time may have elapsed for FORM to kick in, even on a low-mile PacHy.
So true..

I didn’t even consider the factory to dealer transits.. the start/stops from lot to lot and on/off trucks and trains. These will be using the gas engine since the vehicle is in a transit mode and lithium batteries are shipped at 25% which is guage 0% In our vehicles.
 

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So true..

I didn’t even consider the factory to dealer transits.. the start/stops from lot to lot and on/off trucks and trains. These will be using the gas engine since the vehicle is in a transit mode and lithium batteries are shipped at 25% which is guage 0% In our vehicles.
Yeah, transit mode is yet another variable where it's unknown how it impacts FORM.

Then there's how some dealers may take their vehicles out of transit mode shortly after they're driven off the transporter, while others may keep them in transit mode on the lot until they're sold and prepped for delivery to the customer.

I suspect the former in most cases simply because in those states that require a front license plate, virtually every dealer photo I've seen has the front license plate bracket attached. That's actually part of the dealer prep sequence, which also includes taking the vehicle out of transit mode.
 
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