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

asked by on November 06, 2016

So when my car is cold and I turn it on, the engine dies immediately. I have to turn it back on and press the gas pedal in order to prevent it from dying. I have to do this for at least 10 minutes until the engine warms up and then the car operates normally. Also, when I come to a stop or red light and I'm holding the break, the car will shake a lot. Any help will be much appreciated thanks.

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.

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