Ok Joe, here's the scoop. After all the detective work, it turned out to be the throttle position sensor. Here's the thing to remember if your car has these symptoms:
Shudders and stops running.
Sometimes won't start but will try.
Sometimes runs like it's got bad distributor wires.
Inconsistent. Sometimes runs perfect.
Here's what you do if any of the above happens. Turn off the car completely as if you are leaving it. Put it in park, turn off the ignition and remove your keys.
Now, put the key back into the switch, turn the car on. If it cranks right up, you'll get to your destination. If it has trouble, repeat the exercise until it doesn't.
Call your mechanic and have a new throttle position sensor installed. It'll cost you about $80 for parts and labor.
This was a very difficult thing to pinpoint because the bad wires were prompting all the codes and most were dismissed because they were considered irrelevant. Once the wires were fixed, the codes were cleared. But when codes returned the one for the throttle showed up - not on my dodge codes but on the mechanics scanner (a very expensive gadget) and he pinpointed it.
Hope this might help someone.
Wednesday, August 25th, 2010 AT 6:58 PM