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Chrysler Repair/neon '96 hard to start, rough idling once started


i took the neon to work and it was raining on that day, parked nicely , after work i could not start the car. it was cranking but no start. eventually it was towed.  i then told to replace the pump which i have and i still struggle to start the car after a couple of cranks it feels like it is about to start and eventually starts. it then idles rough. and continual idling you start to hear a change like it is now struggling even to keep on idling may 10-15mins later.  At one time it ended up dying.  when its off it still takes a couple of cranks to get it back running.
- i also noticed my plugs are blackened and these are fairly new
- there are no codes .

Hi Tony,
If you are certain there are no codes (ignition key on-off, no flashing of check engine light) then my best suggestion would be examine your egr (exhaust gas recirculation) valve to see that its stem is not gummed up such that it is stuck ajar. There is slot around the stem which you can insert the tip of a screwdriver into and thus move it back and forth. It should close tightly via internal spring-action, to a dead stop. You can spray some WD-40 or similar penetrating lube on the stem where it enters the valve body to free up the action.
Other than that take a look at the spray pattern of the fuel in throttle body to be sure it is very fine, symmetric, and doesn't drip when you shut off the engine. The fuel injector might be going bad which allows a too rich mixture (the blackened spark plug cause?).
Please let me know what you find.
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Roland Finston


Get a Free Fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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