Q: Feels like it wants to stall

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After driving 30 miles to work and sitting all day when starting the car to come home it felt like it wanted to stall. The engine was idling a little rough. It continued to have that it's going to stall feeling going down the road. Almost like ti wasn't getting gas or bad gas or condensation in the tank. I never got up over 40 mph and ended up having to put it on the side of the road and wait for a tow truck. I did have to turn the car on twice for heat. Once the RPM's kept jumping while I was just idling, the second time they jumped for a few seconds and settled right back down, so I tried again to drive it and the same thing. The dealer is saying its a air flow sensor, which of course isn't under warranty but since this dealer is known to screw people over with repairs, I'm not sure if I should trust them. HELP!! I need to get to work and not break the bank.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi Heather, What you are describing is a common symptom of a dirty or failing idle air control valve. The idle air control valve is a small valve on the engine’s intake system that reads the air intake as it comes into the motor. This is controlled by the car’s ECM which uses this information to make adjustments to the air/fuel ratio depending on various inputs such as outside air temperature, intake air temperature, load and various other things. As you accelerate, your car’s engine is receiving a much higher dose of fuel than when at idle and conversely, when you let off the gas pedal, there is a sudden change in this fuel supply as a result of your foot letting off the pedal. When this happens, the job of the idle air control valve is to bring this deceleration down to a slow and smooth idle rather than suddenly cutting off the fuel supply causing the motor to die. When the idle air control valve is not working properly, this cause a disruption in this process resulting in the engine not being able to idle properly. I would recommend having a professional come to your location to diagnose and inspect your vehicle.

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