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Thread: rough idle, stalls at idle, EGR replaced 17K ago

  1. #1
    who got tha funk? Astral's Avatar
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    rough idle, stalls at idle, EGR replaced 17K ago

    OK, folks, help me out.

    P5, 178K miles, recently (as of last week) developed a rough idle AND it takes longer to crank now.

    EGR replaced at 161K miles. IAC inspected at 161K miles and was clean. Spark plugs changed at 174K. Wires replaced about 110-120K.

    Today, I started it cold, it took longer than normal to crank, then it revved up to cold idle RPMs (normal), then stumbled to like 800 RPM (not normal), then back up to cold idle, and it seemed to be somewhat erratic/lopey.

    I took out the MAF and sprayed it from both sides with some MAF cleaner (also did this about 3K miles ago). Put it back in. Same behavior...

    When warm, the idle is barely maintained, it goes from 750RPM to 300-400 (almost stall), kinda cycles up and down like that until it drops low enough that it stalls.

    If I put my foot in the gas lightly, it revs up to 1500RPM and stays there, but I can tell that it's not particularly smooth.

    I can cruise the highway fine, at higher RPMs like 3K or 5K (either no load or while cruising in town), it holds them fine. Full throttle acceleration seems to be mostly there, it does not stumble on acceleration (revved it to 5.5K).

    I inspected the battery contacts, cleaned the posts, voltage stays consistent at about 14.1V, so no electrical problem there. Voltage between battery positive and the ground point on the engine is about the same.

    Blew into the PCV valve, it did let just a little air through instead of blocking it 100% in one of the ways, so I'll replace it just in case, but I doubt this would cause idle problems.

    I think the car has original coils.

    There are no check engine lights!

    Could the EGR have gone bad in only 17K miles and about half a year? Seems unlikely...

    I don't think it's the fuel pump, because it doesn't stumble on acceleration.

    Anything else I can look at?

    Should I try replacing the coils for shits and giggles? Could it be a bad MAF sensor? (But wouldn't that show up in non-idle situations as well?) Should I inspect the EGR again anyway?
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  2. #2
    Registered Zombie fishdonotbounce's Avatar

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    Hmmm that's really weird. I would replace the coils just because you've tried everything else but it could be a bunch of stuff. Usually when coils go bad, you get a random cylinder misfire. Couldn't hurt to replace them though.
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  3. #3
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    a/c on or off? Still could be the iac or egr, not likely but worth another inspection.
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    Coils can get hot and go bad, a possibility since you can get it started. I take it bad sensors trip CELs...so probably not any of those. Test for coil is in 1-18 of shop manual.

    How about timing? Maybe a slipping belt? Good tension? Maybe a vacuum leak somewhere throwing off advance. Fuel pump? Bad injector?

    Just throwing some ideas out there.
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  5. #5
    Registered Member Reitrof's Avatar
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    Oleg, I replaced the coils twice, last about 2 years ago. Coils would be worse under load, not at idle.

    Sounds like the EGR again. Was doing the same thing when you and I replaced it.
    Bruce
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  6. #6
    zoomzoom chaosProtege's Avatar
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    thats weird, mine started doing the same thing yesterday. 45k miles on it. I'm going to try cleaning the egr see if that helps. i'll let you know.

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  7. #7
    zoom-zoom! NETC_Redd's Avatar
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    sounds EXACTLY like what my car was doing when the MAF took a dive. Check that, and the engine coolant temp sensor, they both have similar symptoms.

    Just do a ohm test on them to see if they're working right.

    But yeah, I could start my car, and it would barely stay idling, once I revved it to 4k it still sounds crappy, but not as bad as the idle. Basically the car is reading too much air, and dumping fuel, which washed out the spark till it idles up again. Take out the plugs and check to see if they're covered in carbon or wet, or both.

  8. #8
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    u guys do know that ur not supposed to clean a MAF
    its supposed to clean itself by burning it off or if its not that type then once its dirty, its dirty

    so it may be the MAF, also check the plugs, coils maybe and vacuum leak may also be a problem

    my car did this too but then i cleaned the EGR and the throttle body cuz it was sticking
    fixed the problem

  9. #9
    Black 02 P5 Psylence's Avatar
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    Then what's MAF cleaner for?

  10. #10
    who got tha funk? Astral's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reitrof View Post
    Oleg, I replaced the coils twice, last about 2 years ago. Coils would be worse under load, not at idle.

    Sounds like the EGR again. Was doing the same thing when you and I replaced it.
    OK I'll take the EGR out and see whether it's operating OK.

    Bruce, for some reason, I missed the coils in the repair log, I don't know why! I'll look again, I probably brainfarted there.
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  11. #11
    who got tha funk? Astral's Avatar
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    Finally got the EGR out... one of the bolts was pretty rounded, going to get replacement EGR bolts before it's back in.

    Looks like it's indeed the EGR. I didn't move easily. Spraying the shoot out of it with the carb cleaner.

    Hope that is it... wonder if the dealer will warranty the EGR valve, it's been less than 12 months and they don't have a record of my car's mileage when I bought the part (so 17K can't be easily proven). They like me there anyway, so I hope that works out.
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  12. #12
    Retired MSP Racer! 122 Vega's Avatar

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    With that many miles on your car, you'd have to think that blow by is getting worse. My EGR had to be cleaned after about 20k miles. I only have 56k on my car. Yours may tend to get gunky sooner.

    Britt


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  13. #13
    who got tha funk? Astral's Avatar
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    I cleaned it and put it back in, the car is purring like a kitten. I will try to warranty the EGR anyway. I'm also gonna get new bolts. I took the old bolts and dremelled some excess rusty material on the sides to make them flat again (so that the socket would seat fully) and put them back in with antiseize.

    Thanks for everyone's help. It was indeed the EGR.
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  14. #14
    Registered Zombie fishdonotbounce's Avatar

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    Glad to know you got it all figured out.
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  15. #15
    Hard as woodpecker lips Diehonda's Avatar


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    Remove the EGR and inspect the spring and rod. You may have buildup. The coil could act up at idle or load but more under load.

    After inspecting the EGR I would run the engine and not tap the gas when it stumbles. See if it throws a code and take it in to get the code ran.
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