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Faithful car with trouble

Recently my faithful Neon has had troubles. Its got 103K miles and not given me many issues with the exception of me forgetting that sparkplugs need to be replaced. The issues are yesterday while driving down the road all the dash gauges reset to zero. Gas MPH and Temp. The radio stay on during this period. Also the Temp gauge on the car occasionally says that the Car is over heating. 5 minutes into a drive when the outdoor temp is 60 degrees. If I turn on the heater in the car this will stop and the gauge goes back to the normal range. I have know idea what any of these things could be and New car money is aways away. What can I do to save my paid off car

“Also the Temp gauge on the car occasionally says that the Car is over heating. 5 minutes into a drive when the outdoor temp is 60 degrees. If I turn on the heater in the car this will stop and the gauge goes back to the normal range.”

Although the OP lists this as a secondary issue, it is actually the much more important issue. If this engine has been chronically overheated, it may be near the end of its life. The OP needs to get this car to a competent mechanic a.s.a.p. before it is subjected to more overheating.

It may already be too late to prevent a warped cylinder head, a breached head gasket, and the problems that result from a breached head gasket, but then again it may be possible to save the engine from this situation by simply not driving it any more until the overheating is remedied. This will not fix itself and in reality, more damage is being done to the engine every time that the car is driven in an overheated condition.

While the car is in the shop for the overheating issues, the OP might want to have the mechanic check for a loose ground connection in the dashboard or a loose power connection. However, the situation with the car’s gauges is definitely secondary to the overheating problem.


Since you have not returned to this thread, I am hoping that you are in the process of having the overheating condition investigated.

DO NOT continue to drive the car with this overheating condition unless you want to incur engine damage that will cost more to repair than the car is worth.

You were correct with your first suggestion. After reading this post I found a mechanic I liked and he stated it was a failed head gasket. The quote to fix this issue was 1300 assuming that I didn’t have issues other than the gasket. A 98 dodge neon is work $760 blue book with no issues. I took the oportunity to Trade in the Neon and get a used 4 wheel drive vehicle that I needed for my work Its a Jeep grand Cherokee Limited edition and so far Im in love

A Head Gasket Replacement Requires Little Spent On Parts And Most Of The Cost Is Labor.

Double check with the mechanic you like and see if he is estimating more than a head gasket replacement in that $1300.

Labor varies greatly from one part of the country to another. $1300 sounds on the high side and in the area where I live, very high. Call a couple of other shops and ask what it would cost to put a head gasket on your neon.


It appears that she has already gotten rid of the Neon in question in order to buy a…gulp…Jeep.

Car Karma sucks. I bought Jeep and trade in Neon with head gasket issue. Jeep had a rough idling problem which I demanded they fix as a part of the cost of the car. The dealer agreed and I took the car in for service yesterday. Guess what appearently rough Idle may be caused by You guessed it a HEAD GASKET issue. I now miss my beloved neon


I respectfully suggest that you modify your car-buying patterns. If you had done some basic research, you would have found out that Jeep Grand Cherokees are historically Much Worse Than Average when it comes to their frequency of repairs. Anyone can buy a flawed used car, but if it is a make and model that has traditionally been among the worst, your odds of getting a reliable used car are much slimmer.

My suggestion–especially if there is any way that you can return that Jeep–is that you do the following:

Get a copy of the Consumer Reports Used Car Buyers Guide, which will give you an insightful look at everything that you would want to know about used cars–including historical repair records for virtually all models that were sold in the US.

Try to focus on buying used cars whose maintenance records are available. This usually means buying from an individual, rather than from “Classy Clarences’s Used Car Emporium”, or some version of that type of establishment. If you can see a car’s maintenance records, you can verify that it has been properly maintained, and good maintenance will help to assure fewer problems.

Good luck!