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I've got a 2001 Dodge Stratus ES 2.7L which I purchased new. The check engine light came on recently and although the car still runs just fine, the error code indicated that it was the Idle Air Control Valve (IAC). Not wanting to spend the $169 for the part that the garage I brought my car to wanted to charge me, I decided I'd rather just change it myself as it's easily accessible and only held on by two bolts, as well as being able to clear the code once the problem is gone.

I went to the auto parts store and picked on up (AC333), but after installing it the car wouldn't run. When I pulled it back out, it was obvious that the part was defective as the brass cap on the end was extended by about 1/4" and the spring was exposed. I put the old IAC back in and returned the part to the auto parts store where they agreed the part clearly was defective.

I next went to a boneyard and pulled an IAC out of another 2001 Stratus I found there. The car didn't like that one either, idling a bit high (around 1200 rpm) and when the engine was reved to around 2000 rpm, there was a hesitation of 3-5 seconds after I took my foot off the gas before the idle would come down again. After 3 days of running the car with that one with no improvement, I took that one back out and put the original one back in.

I then ordered one from an auto parts dealer off of eBay (AC165, which is a replacement for AC333). When it arrived, I installed it in a warm engine, and that that one did the trick, as it brought the idle down to around 650 rpm, and the engine responded properly when I took my foot off the gas. Then next morning though, I was surprised to find the engine wouldn't idle when first started. I had to keep my foot on the gas for a few minutes until the engine warmed up. Then the engine would stall out when I stopped at lights, and even stalled when I took my foot off the gas on the highway. So, it seemed I'd gotten another defective IAC. After I managed to get back home, I took that one out and put the old one back in and the engine runs fine again, other than the check engine light coming on and refusing to be cleared.

So, my question is could there be something other than the IAC that is causing the problem, like an incorrect voltage being sent that has affected these other IAC's, or are these replacement IAC's that are made in Mexico not made to the same specifications that the original IAC's were made to...?

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Location: Oregon
what was the code? Your vehicle should give you an OBD2 code that would help narrow down what you need to look at before you replace parts. Can you rell me what the code was, or is?

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