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1984 AMC Eagle Stalling Issues

Hi Guys,

I’m by no means a mechanicy fella, so I’m hoping you might be able to steer me in the right direction here. I recently acquired a 1984 AMC Eagle and I’m having trouble getting it to start. It turns over but the engine stops running unless the accelerator is kept depressed. Also, the car stalled at a light the one time I did get it running, so I’m thinking that there are some issues with the idle or with the carburetor maybe. I live in Colorado and I gather that the idle on these vehicles needed to get adjusted for the altitude, but I assume this has been done already as it has always been a Colorado car and has 125K miles on it. Any suggestions, advice would be welcome! Oh, and the gas is low, so possibly it might be something as simple as a gas supply issue, but judging by what other owners have posted online, it seems that this stalling problem is common with the Eagle so I think it porbably is something more involved.


The carburetor’s in this the vehicle were troublesome. Thank god for fuel injection in modern vehicles.

If there is mechanic around who works on old jeeps visit them. The motor likely is a 4.2L straight 6 which is shared with the CJ-7.

The emmisions controls is miles of hose and may have a leak.

My parents had two of these growing up. Incredible AWD which I think was latter used in Jeeps. Both had poor running problems when cold but once warm would drive well. I think both lasted until 250k at least dispelling.

The good thing about carburetors is they can be adjusted for leaner or richer mixtures. The problem might be that the mixture is too lean - which doesnn’t make a lot of sense at high altitudes, but Colorado isn’t all Denver, and someone may have been using this car at higher altitudes than the current user. An adjustment would be a good first step.

A failure to idle on a carbureted car usually points to a large vacuum leak (hose, vacuum fitting, etc), EGR valve stuck open, or more than likely a grunged up idle circuit or idle air bleed in the carburetor.

You can try removing the idle mixture screws, squirt some aerosol carburetor cleaner into the screw openings, allow it to sit for a few minutes, and then blast some compressed air through there. This can sometimes clean them out without having to overhaul the carburetor.

It’s also possible for an air bleed to pick up a tiny speck of dirt which will clog it and cause the engine to refuse to idle. Sometimes spraying carb cleaner into the top of the carburetor primary bores may clean this up.

If the car had been sitting a while before you bought it then odds are aged gas and grunged up idle circuits are the cause.
Actually, I like the AMC Eagles myself and wouldn’t mind having one. A guy about 10 miles down the road from me has 3 of them but won’t drive them or sell them. :frowning: