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1995 Neon doesn't want to run

I have a 1995 Dodge Neon with a SOHC, 2.0L engine. As of now it won’t start or stay running without pressing the gas pedal. This started off as simply dying at idle a couple of weeks ago and got progressively worse. I accidentally discovered that it will start and run just fine if I disconnect and leave open a vacuum line. Any idea of where I should start looking?


It almost sounds like you are starving it of oxygen, due to the vaccum solution. Have you checked all the simple stuff like the air filter and air hoses? Good Luck.

I tried removing the intake hose right at the throttle body with no luck. Did a little more diagnostic & found that the engine doesn’t seem to be compensating for loads (headlights, A/C, etc). Another note, the exhaust smell indicates that it is running rich.

So it seems that either the ECM can’t see how much air is flowing or can’t adjust accordingly. MAP sensor or IAC valve perhaps?

Haynes manual has procedure for checking the MAP but nothing for the IAC. Any suggestions there?

I don’t think Dodge used an IAC. I had the 2.0 DOHC Neon, and I remember they never used one of the 2 that every other make uses.

Just verified that it does… maybe just on the SOHC?

Spray some throttle body cleaner in the throttle body and IAC valve. Maybe try a different IAC from a salvage yard.

Spray some throttle body cleaner in the throttle body and IAC valve.

That fixed a similar problem with our 95 Neon back before the rust ate it.

I tried the throttle body cleaner, but wound up replacing the IAC valve after all. Runs like a champ.

Thanks for the help.