Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My car is idling at 500 rpms is that normal? It's sounds like it's about to shut off but it doesn't

asked by on

When my car is idling it is at 600 RPMs but it drops to 500 and starts shaking like its going to shut off. What is my problem ?

My car has 116000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello. A low idle can be caused by a few different things. Before doing anything, I’d start by checking the computer for codes. This would tell me if the computer is seeing anything that is not correct. If there are no codes, then I check the sensors readings as a bad throttle position sensor or air flow meter can cause this. Most of the time this is caused by either a vacuum leak or a dirty throttle body. I would then check the throttle body and clean it if needed. This is probably the most common problem. If you are planning on having this low idle condition inspected, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose and repair this.

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!
  • Home
  • Questions
  • My car is idling at 500 rpms is that normal? It's sounds like it's about to shut off but it doesn't

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: Engine tries to start, but then makes a grinding sound instead of starting.

From your description it sounds like your starter and/or flexplate (flyhwheel if you have a manual transmission) may be damaged. A professional technician, such as the ones at YourMechanic, will be able to give you a definitive answer when they...

Q: How do you adjust the steering wheel on?

It’s important to be able to adjust the steering wheel to get the ideal driving position for you. Your car’s steering wheel can adjust in four different ways: up and down, as well as in and out. Here’s how to...

Q: Truck cranks but won't start

It is not possible to have more voltage than the battery can supply, so I think your meter is dropping to 2.0 volts and not 20 volts. I recommend having the battery clamps and posts cleaned and then retest system...

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...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
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.