Q: The car stalls at low RPMs and during idling

asked by on May 23, 2016

My car has starting problems. When it finally starts, it stalls. I've got the battery replaced but the stalling continues. It occurs at low RPMs during idling. It runs a bit better after tuning it up. But, it still idles poorly and stalls at stop lights. I checked the alternator by disconnecting the battery. It runs well that way so the alternator is not an issue. What could be the problem?

Car is stalling Inspection $79.99 - $89.99 Get a Quote

A sticking or stuck idle air control valve can cause this condition. The valve needs to be removed and inspected for excessive carbon buildup. The valve could be cleaned and then then re-installed to see if proper operation can be restored, but these valves are inexpensive and generally just replaced. Fault codes should also be read out to see if there are any other possible issues as well. You may want to enlist the help of a mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will have the tools and training to correct your stalling issue.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

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

What others are asking

Truck jerks and hesitates on acceleration

This may be a sign of a failing mass air flow sensor. The mass air flow sensor is a unit in the intake system that monitors air intake as it is mixed with fuel prior to being injected into the...

Power window won't go up

Hi. It is most likely that the window regulator is bad or the window came off the track. I recommend you have a mechanic like one from YourMechanic visually inspect your window to see which is the failed component.

Rough idle and sputters while driving

Hey there. This is a common sign of a failing idle air control valve. The idle air control valve monitors the air intake as it is mixed with fuel prior to being injected into the engine. This valve is controlled...

My temperature gauge goes to hot while idling, but the car does not overheat.

The rise in temperature is due to the fan clutch not engaging the fan clutch until the temperature gets too high. This is the first indication that the cooling fan clutch is going bad. If you replace the cooling fan...

Car stalls, have to start from neutral. 1997 Jaguar XJ6

This might be the idle air control valve failing. Since this is one of the electronic engine controls which interacts with the engine management system to control idling specifically, it is a prime candidate for this mode of failure. This...

Car bucks when I put it in reverse and drive.

Check your idle speed. If your vehicle is idling too high, it will buck when you engage the transmission. Your idle speed in park should be around 500-600 RPM's. If you are noticing the RPMs to be higher that usual,...

My check engine light came on after getting a jump start from AAA and when i got home i turned the car off and the light stays on

Hello. From what you describe it would appear that your vehicle is experiencing more than one issue. P2070 is the code indicating the intake manifold tuning valve is stuck open. This may be linked to your performance issue. Dark smoke...

Fluctuating RPM gauge when going up hills

Hey there. It's hard to tell without further information. Automatic transmissions rely on solenoids and electronic sensors to shift. If these sensors have failed, the symptoms would be similar to yours. Issues with your fuel system will also produce similar...

I have 2003 Chevy Silverado my problem is I can only listen to my radio in auxiliary when I start the truck radio will not work.

Hi Dennis. Thanks for contacting us today. What you're describing is typically caused by an electrical short inside the ignition switch or with the electrical relay that is faulty. The first thing I would do is determine if other accessory...

Related articles

How to Monitor Your RPM Gauge to Get the Best Performance Out of Your Car
A car tachometer, or RPM gauge, shows the speed the engine is spinning. Watch your RPM gauge to improve your car's performance and fuel efficiency.
Understanding the GMC Oil Life System and Service Indicator Lights
Car symbols, or dashboard lights, are a car service reminder. The GMC Oil Life System indicates when and what service your car needs.
A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 GMC Terrain
When When you look at smaller SUVs like the Honda CR-V and the Toyota RAV4, do you wish for just a little bit more space? But then when you look at the larger SUVs like the Ford Explorer or the...