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.

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 1,000 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
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car dies when the engine is cold but works fine after it warms up

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: o2 sens

Hi Destiny. There really isn't an easy way to answer this question or to resolve the problem you're experiencing, except to have the vehicle inspected first. When an O2 sensor is damaged or causing a problem, it will trigger an...

Q: Low Coolant Light

This would depend on what exact coolant was used in the vehicle. There are many coolants that are made that are supposed to be Universal and for all vehicles. If you use Universal coolant in your vehicle, it is very...

Q: My car was driving fine and then I went to turn into a parking lot and it stalled. I started it back up then it stalled again. In

An engine that starts and stalls can be caused by many things and you will need to have the computer and fuel pressure tested to isolate the cause by a mechanic like one from YourMechanic.

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
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...