Five Important Tips to Note when Buying a Throttle Cable
The throttle cable regulates the amount of air entering the engine. Through this cable, air and fuel are combined to ensure maximum engine efficiency. The throttle body can be damaged due to low-quality fuel, old vehicle age, and poor maintenance. If the "check engine" light has been bothering you or you've been experiencing difficulty in starting your car, then it is your throttle cable that needs rescuing. Buying a replacement kit for your worn-out cable may be the best option to restore your engine's proper function.
Five points to remember:
To help you shop for the right cable for your car, here are some tips when in the market for throttle cables:
- Universal fit. No need to look for a throttle cable that's specific to your car since all throttle cables can fit in any car. It is typically 36 inches long, and it can be cut depending on your needed length. It should be mounted in the carburetor's throttle linkage with no hassle.
- Quality material. You can choose from either stainless steel aircraft cable or galvanized steel core cable. If you are on a budget, you may opt to choose the galvanized steel since it is also corrosion resistant but cheaper than the other type. But if you are looking for a high-quality cable, we suggest that you go for the more durable stainless steel.
- Firm structure. A good throttle cable should have a protective housing or jacket made from polyethylene for corrosion, water resistance, and durability. The core should have a coiled shell made from braided stainless steel. A polymer liner ensures smooth movement, while the lubricant grease will make it still work even during cold weather and with higher water resistance.
- End fittings. Aside from the tough armor-wrapped core, check the cable ends. It should be made from aluminum to ensure strong connection to the throttle linkages. An end cap with rubber gasket seals the cable. This is important to give a smooth, no-bind cable operation for higher efficiency and a stronger link.
- Complete OE replacement kit. First things first: check the contents of the kit. A complete kit includes the following: cable, housing, adapters, washers, clevis, stud, hex key, cotter pin, throttle return spring, and mounting bracket. An instruction manual should also be provided to help you during installation.
Buying a throttle cable may be as easy as buying a regular car cable. But because it performs a vital role in controlling the airflow in your engine system, choosing a high-quality cable should be greatly considered. Check if your new throttle cable passed the QS9000, ISO14000, and TS16949 standards to ensure nothing but high quality and excellent performance.
How to Replace a Faulty Throttle Cable-A Beginner's Guide
Though it is made up of braided steel, the throttle cable in your vehicle can wear out often. It can become loose due to excessive use, or worse, it can get ripped, causing your throttle to be totally dysfunctional. Once you experience acceleration problems or no acceleration at all, have your throttle cable checked; if you find out that it is frayed or ripped, replace it as soon as possible.
Difficulty level: Moderate
Tools you'll need:
- Flathead screwdriver
- 3/8-inch ratchet and socket set
- 1/4-inch ratchet and socket set
Step 1: Open the hood and locate the throttle body.
Step 2: Disengage the throttle cable from the throttle body. In most cases, the cable is secured by a clip that can be loosened and removed using a flathead screwdriver. If it's a mount that holds it in place, then you'll need to use a socket to release the cable.
Step 3: Get rid of tension on the cable by moving the throttle valve arm forward.
Step 4: Locate the bracket that secures the cable to the intake manifold. Push the tabs in and the cable will easily come out.
Step 5: Remove the rubber grommet that locks the throttle cable in its place at the firewall. If it is secured by retaining clips, slide a flathead screwdriver underneath and pry them off.
Step 6: Disengage the cable from the accelerator pedal. Most of the time, there's a slotted hole on the pedal where you can just lift the cable from. In some vehicles, it is secured by a bracket, which you'll need to unbolt.
Step 7: Take the cable out of the vehicle from the engine bay. Install the new one in place by reversing the order of removal.
Removing a ripped throttle cable and installing a new one is easier than you may think. Make sure you'll use a high-quality unit in place of your stock to avoid untimely replacement and more serious vehicle problems.