Friday, March 1, 2013

5.4L engine (Ford) won't hold idle and dies, bad Idle Air Control Valve

     My 2000 F150 would lose idle, usually on start up, and die. To get home from work one day I had to hold down the accelerator with my right foot and brake with my left to keep the engine running. After I got home, it ran fine for days. No fault codes were set. I talked to a mechanic at the Ford dealership where I bought the truck and he said it might be the idle air control valve. He showed me where it was mounted atop and rear on the engine. When it acts up, he suggested, tap on it with something. If it starts and runs that’s the problem. There is a plunger inside this part that can stick.
     The next time it happened I was ready. I tapped on it with  channel-lock pliers and it started and ran perfectly. Yes!


     1) Disconnect the battery. I do this routinely when replacing an electrical component
     2) Unplug the valve. This is a two handed operation. I had to sit on the engine while reaching under and behind the engine to pull on the wiring connector. Then I pushed on the release lever with a long straight blade screwdriver held in the other hand.
     3) Unbolt the valve with an 8mm socket and a 3/8" ratchet. There are two bolts, an upper and a lower. Remove from vehicle.


     1) With a new gasket attached, place the valve in position and turn in the two 8mm bolts by hand. Tighten the bolts.
     2) Reconnect the wiring harness
     3) Reconnect the battery.
     4) Test operation
                                   This one is less than half the cost of Ford OEM


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