Help! Engine keeps cutting out.

1997ThunderbirdLXV6

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  • Drove to supermarket, no issues
  • Coming back out
  • Car has difficulty starting
  • Try again, with light throttle
  • Car starts
  • Keeps running as long as throttle is held down
  • As soon as I release the throttle pedal, engine dies
  • No codes
  • Fuel pump sounds normal
Idle air control valve maybe?
 
Yeah, that's what I'm thinking IAC sensor.

May be clean the MAF and check the air filter too.
 
Not really. I wouldn't recommend it. If it's not far give it a try. I'd recommend calling a tow truck. Do you have towing coverage on your Ins?
 
Sounds exactly like what happened when my IAC went bad many moons ago. It started up then immediately died if I left off the throttle. I cleaned it and it ran for a bit, but when it started acting up (before I finally replaced it), I double-pedaled it.
 
Not to my knowledge. It's a disposable part. It either works or it doesn't.

The only click you should hear when turning the key is the fuel pump priming the system.
 
What is the valve's rest position, open or closed?

And do I just swap it in, or does it require any kind of calibration? (I see it has a screw on the side?)
 
I do...

But a tow, what would that do to her self-esteem?

There's an Advanced Auto down the street, and they have the idle air valve in stock. Should I chance it?

Yea, if you can get the car there I'm sure someone there could help you change it out. It's not a hard part to reach.

Should be a direct swap - no calibration or reset needed. I think the default position is closed. That's why you can't get the car to start.
 
Yea, if you can get the car there I'm sure someone there could help you change it out. It's not a hard part to reach.

Should be a direct swap - no calibration or reset needed. I think the default position is closed. That's why you can't get the car to start.

I walked there. Just bought the part.
I'll look pretty tacky in the supermarket parking lot swapping this...
 
Turn the key on, and tap on the idle air control solenoid. Also wiggle the TPS connector. When you start it, (with your foot off the gas), does in idle up, then drop down and stall? Did you just by gas? Any work been done on the car, recently?
 
I had one fail one day, as I was driving my boss to the airport, lol. I had to keep it running with my foot. :) I hd an 81 subaru. I've had lots of practice, lol. In my case too, replacing the iac fixed it.
 
As I'm telling my friend about today's adventure, I realize how incredibly lucky I was to find the IAC valve at the Advance Auto just one mile away. That was their only one in a 50-mile radius. Napa said they could get it by Friday. Autozone has one within 3.5 miles, and then none for 80+ miles.

What are the odds that mine fails within walking distance of a new part? Someone get me a lottery ticket...
 
Luck is good! Mine is usually not like that. :) It not being motorcraft ,Expect it to go wonky in a much shorter timeframe than the original.
 
It not being motorcraft ,Expect it to go wonky in a much shorter timeframe than the original.

That's where my luck ended:
Right when it happened, I went on Rockauto. They had the Motorcraft one on sale, marked wholesaler closeout. When I checked later tonight, the Motorcraft one had entirely disappeared from their site.

So I'll keep the "Carquest" one. Good thing is it comes with a lifetime replacement warranty.
 

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