Ever wonder how you get to enjoy feeling the air-conditioning (A/C) vents' breeze or listening to the radio even when your vehicle's just idling? Well, that's all in a day's work for your vehicle's idle control valve. Bolted to the throttle body lower housing at the back of a fuel-injected vehicle's engine, the idle control valve increases the engine's idle speed. During its idling, the engine produces just enough power to keep it and other auxiliary auto parts running. When your vehicle's computer senses that the engine's going to need more power to run smoothly during its idle status (to operate the radio and the A/C system, for example), the computer opens the idle control valve. The idle control valve then ups the engine's idle speed by allowing air to bypass the throttle plate. So when your vehicle's engine stalls when you kick your vehicle into idle mode, have a look at the idle control valve. When a replacement is due, you can get your next idle control valve right here at Carparts.
• Our idle control valves are guaranteed to regulate your engine's idle speed more efficiently.
• A premium idle control valve helps achieve efficient engine performance by maintaining the right engine idle speed.
• If the engine's idle speed drops below average levels, the idle control valve opens to increase airflow.
Idle Control Valve Installation in Five Easy Steps
Idling is one of the processes cars are most frequently exposed to. It is as common as starting the engine for everyday driving. As such, it is important to keep the idle control valve in a first-rate condition. When defect and damage strike, replacement should be an immediate option to maintain the ride's smooth idling.
Required skill level: Novice
Tools you'll need
- Scan tool
- Engine oil
- Shop rags
Checking first if replacement is really necessary
Although replacing the idle control valve is a relatively low-cost, easy process, we still advise verification of damage. To assess the quality of your current ICV, use the scan tool. The car's manual can also be of help in this process. Use it as a reference for the site of your vehicle's OBD1 or OBD2 connection. After locating it, turn on your engine for the scan tool to receive codes and then plug the scanner to the OBD. Select the right procedure to read the code. If the resistance reading is outside the specifications in the car's manual, replacement is really needed.
Locating the idle control valve in your car
Pop the hood and access the idle control valve. It is usually at the top-center of the engine, attached to the throttle. In some models, like the Crown Vic and Grand Marquis, the ICV can be accessed at the back of the air intake section, where one would expect a carburetor. It is only a small device, almost the size of your hand.
Disconnecting the valve
Pull out the electrical connector from the ICV. You will also see two bolts and an exhaust hose attached to the valve. With a socket wrench, remove the bolts first, followed by the gasket. Once these have been detached, unplug the exhaust hose by twisting the ICV a little.
Cleaning the sealing surface
Use the shop rag to clean the sealing surface and the throttle body assembly. A clean area is also necessary in the upkeep of the ICV.
Installing the new ICV
After cleaning the mounting surfaces, assemble the new idle control valve. Don't forget to apply some clean engine oil to the gasket prior to the installation. Set up the ICV in almost the same manner as the old valve was detached. Tighten the bolts and plug the electrical wirings. To check if the installation was successful, conduct a test drive, but don't forget to erase the codes and commands on the scan tool first. Happy idling!
Air Control Valve: Parts Shopping Guide for Bargain Hunters
Life is full of choices, and sometimes you just have to pick the right one. The same is true when shopping for an air control valve. You'll come across more than a few options as this comes in many different forms. The air control valve you should get as a replacement should meet your foremost auto needs without emptying your pockets. We have here some practical shopping tips for bargain hunters and auto parts shoppers.
Know the specific type of air control valve your vehicle needs.
The air control valve comes in different types and variations such as the idle air control valve, power steering air control valve, turbo air control valve, and intake manifold control valve. Narrow down your search to a specific type of valve, and from there, you can move on to other options. If you're not familiar with the part, you can use the vehicle manual as reference. The OE number can also be your guide.
Familiarize yourself with item specifics and product features.
Not all replacement air control valves are made with the same quality standards and manufacturing process. Some of the trusted OEM/OES brands are strict with quality testing and screening to guarantee the product's compatibility, reliable design, and premium function. Valves that are made of premium-grade materials can deliver topnotch performance. Aside from being tough and reliable, the valves should be easy to install, without further modifications. If it's designed to meet or exceed the OE standards and specs, then once it's installed, it shouldn't interfere with the system's performance. Instead, it should be able to fix the problem.
Check out the different brands.
As you shop around, you'll be acquainted with different brands. You've probably heard some of them but may not be too familiar with others. To find out if the brand is reliable or the product is of good quality, take time to read some reviews and consumer ratings. This will tell you what the potential problems are with the product and how users rate it based on its pros and cons. If you're a DIYer or a budget-conscious car parts shopper, it pays to explore the available options.
Hunt for the best options at the most competitive prices.
The best place to hunt for top-quality parts at low prices is the Internet. Here, your options aren't limited. Auto parts stores carry a wide-range of products and some of the best-selling and most trusted brands. You can get at least 15% off the usual price or more if you just explore the available options. As you shop around for great deals, sign up for promos and look for reputable online shopping outlets that offer price cuts for highly reliable automotive products. These stores provide great value for money because they offer products that fit and can match the quality of the genuine vehicle part. They've partnered with top OEM/OES brands and aftermarket product manufacturers to offer the best for less. Product warranty is a standard for most.