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Thoughts on other car problems

I just posted my current problem, but I figure it might be worth seeing what you think of the other problems I’ve had recently with my 03 Neon:

1) The CMP sensor throws codes constantly and the car is really hard to start at times. I replaced it a year or two ago with a generic part. From what I’ve read elsewhere, Neons hate non-Mopar parts for this so I just got a Mopar replacement and will drop it in when I get the valve cover back on. Does it make sense that a replacement could go bad w/in 20k miles or so?

2) Cylinder 1 misfired pretty hard. I accelerated on the highway and heard a thunk or thud w/ a loss of power. As the only code I got was a misfire I drove it home slowly (about a mile). Could this be caused by fouled plugs from the repeated hard starting? (I lived with the CMP sensor being bad through the MN winter cause I didn’t want to replace it until it was warm). Should I look into this more? The thunk really worries me…

3) Last spring at about 95k miles I noticed what felt like my clutch slipping a lot. It would almost always slip under even partial acceleration at highway speeds and occasionally at lower speeds. I’d notice the rev increase w/o increasing tire speed. I took it to a major chain and they took a week to replace the clutch… but ever since then I’ve felt occasional slips. Did they do their job? Or is there something else here? I don’t have a tach but I have a scan gauge ii hooked up which does show rpm increasing significantly w/o speed increasing.

I should note for 2) the plugs are pretty fouled but not terrible. I replaced them a couple of years ago and they’re platinums with 20k miles on them.

First, you should put in a new set of spark plugs. They’re cheap and you can do the job yourself. Even if they only have 20K miles, plugs get fouled quickly in cold climates when the engine is frequently not given enough time to fully warm up.

Second, get that Mopar CMP sensor in there, ASAP. It is unlikely a sensor would go bad so soon even if it were made in China, but if your car is showing codes for a bad sensor, and you already own a replacement, so what the heck are you waiting for?

As for the clutch slip, my best guess is that the replacement was not actually made. But I have no way of knowing from here, and no advice for you other than to discuss it with the shop manager.

Let us know the outcome of your repairs.

I’ve got new plugs and the Mopar part just showed up in the mail today… I’m putting it in as soon as my other project gets done.

The shop charged me for the replacement flywheel and clutch (and for shipping my transmission to a specialist who told them there was nothing wrong with it). I sure hope they replaced it, but the labor to have it verified is almost not worth it.

They billed you for removing the transmission and shipping it to someone else, and it’s too much trouble to figure out if they put the transmission back in your car?

Well, I just mean I thought the labor to have someone else verify the clutch was replaced would cost almost as much as doing another swap.