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Q: Engine coughs and stumbles at start up

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On the first start up in the morning, the engine coughs and sputters for a minute or maybe two, and then settles down to normal for the rest of the day. Next morning, same thing. Never happens during the days driving even if it sits for a while. My mechanic thinks we should put in a new idle control valve. What do you think?

My car has 80000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: This is a common sign of a failing idle air...

This is a common sign of a failing idle air control valve. As you may know the idle air control valve regulates the flow of air into the engine at idle or low speeds in order to maintain the proper air/fuel ratio. When this is not working as it should, this can cause the car to idle very poorly or in some cases not at all. This is often times very intermittent or unpredictable. I would suggest having an expert from YourMechanic come to your home to diagnose your car's running condition and repair or replace the idle control valve if needed.

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