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Dodge-Plymouth Neon Overheating



  • My 97 plymouth neon is running hot but it doesn't overheat.No over flowing of radiator fluid.I changed out the thermostat but it still runs hotter than it should!!! Any ideas?? thanxs Gina
  • beaudsbeauds Posts: 1
    Where to start, I have a 1997 dodge neon and something is defiantly not right. If i have my car on for about 10 minutes my temp guage will start to rise, and eventually will be at H, but then it will slowly randomly spike back down to mid, and then spike back up again, back down, back to H, and so forth..If i turn my car off with it being all the way at H, and turn my car over to just the guages having power, or even being all the way on, the temp guage goes to about mid. If i leave the car off for awhile, the engine cools like normal. Ive tried replacing the whole cluster unit, and also tried re soldering my old one. Didnt fix it. Since ive noticed that when the car goes to H, my radiator fans dont come on, nor do they ever, thats a problem it self. Also i just replaced the radiator cap and thermostat. When the car goes to H, the therm. doesnt always open. The other day i was letting my car idle and i saw smoke coming from my hood, it was only coming from the side where the overflow tank was and the radiator res. is. And i drove it home quickly to find out all my anti freeze leaked out..weird back pressure perhaps? I told a guy who works solely on neons the symptons and he thinks its a headgasket, anyone else have any ideas?

  • fan doesn't kick-in when it sits and idle gauge will start to rise toward Hot,they told me its the relay so I replace the relay in the fuse box.still the fan doesn't kick-in.
  • i have a 95 as well i had the same problem, its actually fairly common its just the thermastat and housing replace both and it should be good if not do as suggested and check for bubbles and signs of a headgasket failure
  • i had same exact thing, turned out, for some reason, being a crappy ground from battry to car..bolt was hot...replaced cleaned fine
  • tonioltoniol Posts: 6

    I have a 99 neon coupe sport that does the same thing as your symptoms describe. I have learned in the past that when you replace a thermostat it best to get it from the dealership of any make of car. I done that but I dont know why a OEM thermostat works better. I have flushed the radiator. Checked all the fluid levels (oil) included. I am the second owner of the car, I bought it from a family member. It has 208000+ miles on it. There are no leaks. As I type this and after reading some other posts. I am going back to check the radiator cap. I know you said your car is a 97 model, but we both have the same symptoms. I would like to thank you in advance for any advice you might have to help solve my problem.
  • tonioltoniol Posts: 6

    I read this as well before I posted my symptoms and reading it again and see it was from you. I am going to try this as Just didn't pay attention to the posts. And you are saying because of a corroded connection from battery to body of the car would make the engine over heat? I will definitely check this out...Thanks again in advance.
  • Hi
    I've been having the same problem with my 99 neon- did you try the battery clean up that wiggdoff suggested ... & if so did it work?
  • tonioltoniol Posts: 6
    I couldn't find the person that posted this therefore I copied it out of my email and hope he/she will see it.

    #74 Re: 1997 Dodge Neon Overheating [beauds] by gvalley1 Aug 29, 2011 (11:36 am)
    Hi I've been having the same problem with my 99 neon- did you try the battery clean up that wiggdoff suggested ... & if so did it work?
    View/reply at: Re: 1997 Dodge Neon Overheating [beauds]

    All connections to battery are clean, posts and the ground to the body of the car, but it seem strange a corroded connection to the body of the car would make keep spiking up and down between halfway of the temp gauge and to hot. I think I am going to try a complete coolant system flush. Hopefully that will work, but if there some reason that corroded connection will make it run hot then I will look at it again and hopefully check the connection to the starter, but it really don't seem logical.
  • hello, i have a 95 neon as well. a couple months ago it over heated for the first time since i got the car, so i replaced the thermostat and it ran fine for about 2 months. and about 3 weeks ago it over heated again, then the next day it was fine. im not sure why it would just randomly over heat like that. but again, it ran fine for another 2 weeks, and then started over heating again!!! its like the car is having mood swings or something lol idk. but this past weekend i drove it home to arizona from california and even going 80 on the freeway it over heated, so when i got here i took it to the shop. i guess the entire radiator was corroded and the fluids werent circulating correctly. so yesterday i picked it up after they put a new radiator in it. and today i was stuck at a stop light and it got hot again! im not sure what is going on here. i took it back to the shop and they did all the tests again and test drove it and it ran FINE im so irritated at this point. i hate having this 50/50 chance of my car over heating every time i drive it. obviously when it starts getting warm i turn the heater on full blast, but come on i live in phoenix and its still summer! this is not right....

    PLEASE any advice or suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated!!!!!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,403
    Neons are notorious for head gasket issues so you folks better look into that. You can test for it.


  • that was the first test i got done. and the head gaskets are completely fine. when i took the car back today, the mechanic even tested it again to make sure.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,403 you know how he tested for it. Best way is to pressurize the cooling system, then, while it's still under pressure, pull the spark plugs and look for coolant on them. Also you can test for combustion gases in the coolant by adding a chemical to the radiator.

    I'm always suspicious of Neon overheats, so that's why I mentioned this. But sounds like you're ahead of me on this one!


  • Hi in response to your post.... I have did everything I know what to do replace the thermostat, radiator cap, water pump and now I have a radiator for the car now that I have read your post and you said you replace the radiator hell I am about scare to try it. And if I take it to the dealership it might cost out of the ying yang and they aren't going tell tell what the problem might be, just bring it in we go to look at it...right. After all the work I have done to it I guess that is what I am going to have to if the radiator replacement don't work.

    Getting frustrated!
  • i wouldnt replace the radiator until you get it checked out and see if it is corroded really bad, if it is just plugged get it flushed before you replace it. i would have flushed mine but i couldnt, it was so bad it was like falling apart since it was the original one. BUT even with the new radiator in my car it still got hot. so i dont really know what is wrong with it. im just saving up as much as i can to get a new car, I AM SO OVER NEONS!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Jesshold,

    I replaced the radiator and it seem to be working just great. I have a 99 neon sport, I am just going to keep an eye on it
  • when i took my car back to the shop after it got hot again after i got a new radiator, my mechanic installed a plastic shroud on the bottom. its been running great ever since! BUT i got a whole new problem now haha. was turning into a gas station the other night and my car completely shut off and my steering wheel locked up. got a few different people to check it out. one says its the o2 sensor, one says its the fuel pump or filter haha. WHO KNOWS. like i said before, im so over this car. im pouring more money into it than its actually worth.
  • Great idea! about the rewiring of the fans! LOL
  • I replaced everything but the fan relay. I am going to look at the fuse again in the relay box. I got rid of the overflow container cause all it did was leak anyway and it was in the way when I replaced the head gasket. I heard the coolant temperature sensor was what was causing the overheating. Now I used to have a leak but I found that and that was what I thought was overheating it but after repairing the leak. It overheated again so that's when I tried the coolant temperature sensor. The leak was a bit of hose behind the intake manifold that goes from the head to the heater core. Now I know where the fan relay is. Occasionally I hear them run but I have not noticed when it overheats because I am driving it. I am going to look at the grounds again because I found one that was not connected at all when it should have been. As far as the gauge cluster it seems that when taken apart it just rests on top of the plugs for the gauges. I just wack it till it works again aparently the plugs don't hold it tight enough. I was toying with the idea of putting some screws into the gauge cluster to hold it tight but haven't felt like taking it apart again since the overheating started.
  • Mine did the same thing it was the fuse box. I bipassed the fuse box, ran a wire from my fans to my battery and onto my ignition switch( incase i forgot to turn em off ) and toggle switched it right on my dashboard. works like a charm
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