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AMEDEE
AMEDEE, FORD TECHNICIAN
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 25214
Experience:  ASE CERTIFIED TECHNICIAN ADVANCED LEVEL SPECIALIST. Wisconsin certified emissions state inspector
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I have a 2003 Ford Escape. The engine wont idle, but will

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I have a 2003 Ford Escape. The engine won't idle, but will run if you accelerate a little. What do you think is wrong.

Greetings! You could have a bad mass air flow sensor. Or the snorkel from the mass air flow sensor to the throttle body could be ripped. Both are very common and can cause you vehicle to loose power along with many other drive ability issues. First look for cracks or rips or anywhere air can enter the engine that is not accounted for by the mass air flow sensor. Next comes the Mass Air Flow (MAF) sensor. This is a very important sensor input to the computer. It uses a hot wire sensing element to measure the amount of air entering the engine. The MAF sensor then outputs an analog voltage signal to the PCM proportional to the intake air mass. The PCM calculates the required fuel injector pulse width in order to provide the desired air/fuel ratio. If the sensor is bad than this air/fuel ratio will be off causing severe performance issues. In extreme cases, I have seen these two problems cause a no start condition. This input can also be used in determining transmission Electronic Pressure Control, shift and torque converter clutch scheduling. The check engine light may even pop on if the sensor is bad, the snorkel is ripped or a tube has fallen off. This will result in a lean condition.

 

In adition, your throttle body may be carboned up and need to be cleaned! This can cause all sorts of idle and hesitation problems. This is caused by the throttle plate not seating properly. The First thing i would do is clean out the throttle body with some throttle plate and intake cleaner and a small brush. Another common cause would be the Idle Air Control motor. It may be bad causing your condition. This is very common on older cars. The IAC motor gets lazy and cant keep up with the fast idle changes. Also when the IAC motor is out, I rec to check the passages for carbon build up. If they are plugged they need to be cleaned out.

 

 

The position of the IAC pintle affects engine start up and the idle characteristics of the vehicle. If the IAC pintle is open fully, too much air will be allowed into the manifold. This results in high idle speed, along with possible hard starting and a lean air/fuel ratio. If the IAC pintle is stuck closed, too little air will be allowed in the manifold. This results in a low idle speed, along with possible hard starting and a rich air/fuel ratio. If the IAC pintle is stuck part way open, the idle may be high or low and will not respond to changes in engine load.

 

 

 

Check for the following conditions:

 

Poor connection at PCM or IAC motor. Inspect harness connectors for backed out terminals, improper mating, broken locks, improperly formed or damaged terminals, and poor terminal to wire connection. Refer to Diagrams.
Damaged harness. Inspect the wiring harness for damage.
Restricted air intake system. Check for a possible collapsed air intake duct, restricted air filter element, or foreign objects blocking the air intake system.
Throttle body. Check for objects blocking the IAC passage or throttle bore, excessive deposits in the IAC passage and on the IAC pintle, and excessive deposits in the throttle bore and on the throttle plate. Check for a sticking throttle plate. Also inspect the IAC passage for deposits or objects which will not allow the IAC pintle to fully extend.
Vacuum leak. Check for a condition that causes a vacuum leak, such as disconnected or damaged hoses, leaks at EGR valve and EGR pipe to intake manifold, leaks at throttle body, faulty or incorrectly installed PCV valve, leaks at intake manifold brake booster hose disconnected, oil filler cap, oil level indicator loose or missing, etc..

 

Just be sure that there are no air or vacuum leaks at all under the hood.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
is there a way to test the MAF before spending $150.00 and then the problem isn't fixed?

If no vacuum leaks appear to be evident, check the Barometric Pressure (BARO) reading on the scan tool. It should indicate 156-159 hertz at sea level elevations. For every 1000 feet gained above sea level, it should decrease 3 hertz from the sea level value.

 

If the BARO reading is low, check the output of the Mass Air Flow (MAF) sensor. A typical reading at idle will indicate a reading of 0.7-1.0 volt. The output voltage of the sensor during snap acceleration should react quickly and reach a minimum of 3.0 volts.

 

AMEDEE and other Ford Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
i have no scanner.
Just check the voltage out put on the signal wire with a voltmeter.