Ford Won't Idle
courtesy of Bob, The Auto Answer Man
I have a 1990 F-150, fuel injected 5.8 (351) engine. It normally idled at about 700 RPM, according to the tach. I guess the computer compensated for the air conditioner in warm weather because the idle was the same summer or winter.
Recently, the engine just refuses to idle. I can start it (starts easy), drive two miles and stop, and the engine will die. About the only way I can get it out of the driveway or keep it running at low speed is by keeping the accelerator pushed down a little. I cannot find any adjustment for the idle. Any ideas?
The idle is controlled by a little valve called the IAC (idle air controller) or IAC valve (idle air control) valve. If you disconnect the wires that lead to it, does the car do the exact same thing? When you first start the car, does it rev higher and then lower to 700 or is it always at 700? If the latter, then the computer may simply need to be reset because it seems that the IAC is adjusting.
To do this, disconnect the battery for about 20 minutes. Then start the engine and do nothing for about 10 minutes. If that doesn't help, then the ports may be carbon blocked and need to be cleaned. The IAC should remove with two bolts from the side of the throttle housing. Get some good fuel injection cleaner and spray away! You may need to replace the gasket, so you might want to pick that up first. Then, if this fails, you may have to replace the IAC itself.
Bob, The Auto Answer Man
Have a car care question? Visit our automotive center and see if we've already answered it or a similar question.
Also in Home
- Ways to reuse an entertainment center
- The cost of using your clothes dryer
- Hay bale gardens
- Priortizing home repair projects
- Great ideas for decorating your entry on a dime
- Easy, inexpensive ways to grow from seed
- 10 ways to save money on your utility bill
- 5 simple and affordable luxuries for your home
- 5 frugal ways to expand your living space
- Top 10 DIY mistakes made by home 'handymen'
- 6 ways to save on home heating
- 7 ghastly critters that will eat your house
- Find the best mortgage rates in your area
- 3 ways to use a mortgage calculator
- Mortgage calculator: Calculate your payment and more
- Home equity calculator: HELOC vs. line of credit
- Mortgage refinance break-even calculator
- How much money can I borrow for a mortgage?
- Who offers the most home insurance discounts?