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When your vehicle is idling, the throttle plate is closed. This restricts air from entering the engine, except for a passage which allows a small amount of air to flow at all times. The amount of air which flows through this passage is regulated by the throttle air bypass valve. It is a small solenoid that is electronically controlled by the engine control module. It regulates the amount of airflow based on the need for fresh air to keep the engine running smoothly at idle, the ambient temperature, and the accessories creating extra load on the engine. If this bypass valve is plugged or if the pintle inside is stuck, there may be unrestricted idle air which causes the engine to idle abnormally high, or it may completely block the passageway causing the engine to stumble or stall.
The throttle air bypass valve is usually serviced as part of a throttle body cleaning, and should be done every 25,000-35,000 miles. This helps prevent blockages in the bypass valve. If you are experiencing symptoms that may be related to the throttle air bypass valve, have one of our expert technicians diagnose and repair it as soon as possible.
The throttle air bypass valve can cause your engine to stall at idle. Though it does not present an immediate danger, it is best to have the bypass valve replaced as soon as possible.