Ford Escort:

car does not idle and bucks in lower gears

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# 1  2/18/2011 9:26 PM

joni.steagall
New member
Registered: 2/2/2011
Posts: 4

car does not idle and bucks in lower gears

I have a 1992 Ford Escort XLE with a 1.8L engine that does not want to idle. Also it bucks when you take off in gears 1-3. It smooths out when you get up to speed. I recently had to have the timing belt replaced.The car had been running rough and then the timing belt broke. After replacing the belt there was some engine surge while in first gear but has gotten progressively worse. I have replaced the spark plugs and air filter with no signs of improvement. Any help diagnosing would be appreciated. I'm out of ideas short of trying to drive it to a mechanic and hooking it up to a diagnostic scanner.

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# 2  2/19/2011 12:32 AM

way2old
Senior Member
Registered: 9/17/2009
Posts: 30

Re: car does not idle and bucks in lower gears

Possibly a dirty throttle body or a dirty IAC valve.  There is throttle body cleaners that do a good job of cleaning the carbon out of the throttle body.  You can use it on the IAC valve also.


Being way2old is why I need help from younger minds.
People are like slinkys, not much use but I still smile when I see one stumble down the stairs.

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# 3  2/19/2011 3:15 PM

joni.steagall
New member
Registered: 2/2/2011
Posts: 4

Re: car does not idle and bucks in lower gears

Thank you for your response Way2old.When I went to check the throttle body I found a split in the inlet air duct. I wrapped it with duct tape for a test and car ran great so I'll get a new duct and hopefully solve my problem. You definitely were in the right neighborhood. Thanks so much for your help.smile

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# 4  2/19/2011 4:48 PM

TechHelp2
Administrator
Registered: 11/24/2009
Posts: 1299

Re: car does not idle and bucks in lower gears

Having a cracked air duct can mess up the signal from the mass air sensor. The idle air control, oxygen sensors map sensor and throttle position sensors all are trying to compensate for the air leak at the air duct. This gives the poor running condition.

Way to old is also right. The idle air control motor and throttle valve could be clogged up with carbon causing the engine surge and stalling. Cleaning them with the cleaner mentioned works well. This is also a maintenance item which should be done at every tune up.

Replacing the air duct and cleaning the throttle valve and idle air control motor will get you on your way.


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# 5  2/23/2011 2:34 AM

Administrator
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Registered: 9/27/2008
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Re: car does not idle and bucks in lower gears

Hey way2old,

Glad you're still around helping with user's questions.

Just wanted to let you know that we're about to implement a huge database. Everyone will be able to search for safety complaints, defect investigations, recalls, and technical service bulletins pertaining to their vehicle.

Hope all is well,

Admin


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