Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car dies when the engine is cold but works fine after it warms up

asked by on

When I turn on my car when the engine is cold, the engine dies immediately. I have to press the gas pedal multiple times in order to keep it from dying. I have to do this for at least 10 minutes until the car warms up. Also, when I come to a stop or a red light, while press down on the break, my car shakes a lot. Thanks for the help.

My car has 175000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hello. Your issue is very likely the idle a...

Hello. Your issue is very likely the idle air control valve, or related components. After continuous use for years, these valves become clogged with carbon and other build-up. The valve can be cleaned. You can use a carburetor cleaner, or similar solvent to help dislodge some of the debris. This would be sprayed into your air intake. Keep in mind what is passed through must be consumed by the engine, and it may act funny during that process. You can also have the entire unit replaced. This would be recommended for any damage to the unit that wasn’t related to a simple clog. If there is a short in the system, or the valve has failed, you would likely experience more dramatic symptoms.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Steering wheel locked

It sounds like what you are describing is the steering lock mechanism actually doing it's job locking the steering wheel prior to turning the key. The steering will lock any time the vehicle is attempted to be moved without the...

Q: Remote car starter not working

If your vehicle has an aftermarket alarm that has an immobilizer that no longer functions; the alarm system will have to be removed and factory wiring repaired in order to start your vehicle. I suggest having a qualified mechanic help...

Q: My car has a evap leak and poor performance

All modern cars are equipped with an Evaporative Emission Control (EVAP) system. The EVAP system prevents fuel vapors from the fuel tank from escaping into the atmosphere. The EVAP system collects and temporarily stores the fuel vapors in the charcoal...

Related articles

What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.