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Ford Taurus Has An Erratic Idle, Stalls

Q. Problem: It started a couple of weeks ago when the engine accelerated while I was stopped for a traffic light. Since that time the idle speed has become erratic. If I accelerate to 35 to 40 mph, the RPMs will remain high even if I remove my foot from the accelerator pedal. When I come to a stop, the idle will remain high for a 10 to 15 seconds then it will come down to around normal.

Ford Taurus Has An Erratic Idle, Stalls

It will stay normal for another 10 to 15 seconds then drop down so low that the engine will stall. When I start it again the idle will be high, 2,000 RPM, and the whole process will repeat. I purchased a Haynes manual and replaced both the Idle Control Valve and the Throttle Position Sensor. It did not fix the problem.

The car also, occasionally, hesitates on acceleration, dangerous when turning in front of oncoming traffic. A couple of times I noticed that when I removed my foot from the accelerator the RPMs actually increased. Also, the engine diagrams in the Haynes manual do not represent the DOHC engine. I can't even locate the PCV valve. I greatly appreciate any help you can give me.

  • 1998 Ford Taurus SE
  • 3.0 liter DOHC
  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,000 miles


A. I think if you read this, you will be able to solve your idle speed and hesitation problems.

Ford Mass Air Flow Sensors

Additional Information provided courtesy of ALLDATA

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© 2003 Vincent T. Ciulla

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