How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Randall C Your Own Question
Randall C
Randall C, ASE Master Technician
Category: Dodge
Satisfied Customers: 12803
Experience:  ASE Master Tech, 32 years Diag/Electrical Specialist
Type Your Dodge Question Here...
Randall C is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

my 1997 dodge neon is leaking coolant from, (I believe) by

Resolved Question:

my 1997 dodge neon is leaking coolant from, (I believe) by the main shaft. What is leaking and how do I get it fixed. How much will it cost to repair (ballpark)?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dodge
Expert:  Randall C replied 7 years ago.
Hello, what are you reffering to when you say the main shaft? lmk thanks
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
The coolant is leaking from just above the oil pan, where the lower pulley is. That is where the coolant seems to be coming from.
Expert:  Randall C replied 7 years ago.
Do you have the single cam or DOHC engine?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
On the engine cover it says sohc 2.0L 16 valve, does that answer your question?
Expert:  Randall C replied 7 years ago.

In 99% of the cases where coolant is on the lower crank pulley, it is the water pump leaking. The problem is you must remove the timing belt to do the job. On a DOHC engine this is a pretty tricky job. If off one tooth, you will damage the engine. I do not know your abilities but if you have not done a timing belt before, I do suggest a shop for this,. I have put directions below for refernce if you decide to undertake yourself



  1. Raise vehicle on a hoist. Remove right inner splash shield.
  2. Remove accessory drive belts and power steering pump.
  3. Drain cooling system.
  4. Support engine from the bottom and remove right engine mount.
  5. Remove power steering pump bracket bolts and set pump and bracket assembly aside. Power steering lines do not need to be disconnected.
  6. Remove right engine mount bracket.
  7. Remove timing belt.
  8. Remove inner timing belt cover.

  1. Remove water pump attaching screws to engine.


  1. Install O-ring in water pump body O-ring groove. Use small dabs of Mopar Silicone Rubber Adhesive Sealant, or equivalent around the water pump body to secure O-ring in place during installation. CAUTION: Make sure O-ring is properly seated in water pump groove before tightening screws. An improperly located O-ring may cause damage to the O-ring and cause a coolant leak.
  2. Assemble pump body to block and tighten screws to 12 Nm (105 inch lbs) . Pressurize cooling system to 15 psi with pressure tester and check water pump shaft seal and O-ring for leaks.
  3. Rotate pump by hand to check for freedom of movement.
  4. Install inner timing belt cover.
  5. Install timing belt.
  6. Install right engine mount bracket and engine mount.
  7. Fill cooling system.
  8. Install power steering pump and accessory drive belts.


CAUTION: Camshaft or crankshaft should not be rotate after timing belt is removed. Damage to valve components may occur. Always align timing marks before removing timing belt.

  1. Remove crankshaft damper bolt.
  2. Remove engine mount bracket and timing belt cover fasteners, remove cover.
  3. Align camshaft timing marks. Loosen timing belt tensioner fasteners and remove timing belt.

CAUTION: Do not loosen, tighten, or remove the tensioner pivot bolt.


  1. When tensioner is removed from the engine it is necessary to compress the plunger into the tensioner body.

  1. Place the tensioner into a vise and slowly compress the plunger. CAUTION: Index the tensioner in the vise the same way it is installed on the engine. This is to ensure proper pin orientation when tensioner is installed on the engine.
  2. When plunger is compressed into the tensioner body install a pin through the body and plunger to retain plunger in place until tensioner is installed.

  1. Set crankshaft sprocket to Top Dead Center (TDC) by aligning the sprocket with the arrow on the oil pump housing, then back off to 3 notches before TDC.

  1. Set camshafts timing marks together by aligning notches on sprockets.

  1. Rotate crankshaft 1/2 tooth counterclockwise from TDC.

  1. Install timing belt in this direction. Starting at the crankshaft, go around the water pump sprocket, idler pulley, camshaft sprockets and then around the tensioner pulley.
  2. Move crankshaft sprocket to TDC to take up belt slack. Install tensioner to Clock but do not tighten fasteners.
  3. Using a torque wrench on the tensioner pulley apply 28 Nm (250 inch lbs.) of torque to tensioner.
  4. With torque being applied to the tensioner pulley move the tensioner up against the tensioner pulley bracket and tighten fasteners to 31 Nm (275 inch lbs.) .
  5. Pull tensioner plunger pin. Pretension is correct when pin can be removed and installed freely.
  6. Rotate crankshaft 2 revolutions and check the alignment of the timing marks.
  7. Install front half of timing cover.
  8. Install engine mount bracket.
  9. Install right engine mount.
  10. Remove jack from under engine.

  1. Install crankshaft damper using M12 1.75 x 150 mm bolt, washer, thrust bearing and nut from Special Tool 6792. Install crankshaft damper bolt and tighten to 142 Nm (105 ft. lbs.) .
  2. Install accessory drive belts.
  3. Raise vehicle on hoist and install right inner splash shield.
  4. After timing belt has been replaced, use a Diagnostic Readout Box (DRB) , or equivalent select adjustments and then relearn CMP/CKP, to relearn camshaft and crankshaft timing.


Randall C and 3 other Dodge Specialists are ready to help you