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Idle problem HELP!

2334 Views 6 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Zepp774
Okay so I have a V6 2004 Ford Escape (automatic) with 80,000 miles on it. I recently had to replace my alternator, wasn't easy but did that successfully. Got an oil change, new K&N air filter, did a transmission flush ( prowlers method, changed from mercon atf or presummably whatever was in there before i bought the car to mercon V-the only thing the ford dealership recommends and has) and car was running good except for a few things i've noticed within the last two weeks.

One - there was one or two times when i had to come a sudden stop ( I live in the city ) and afterwards my car stalled out. Also a few times it didn't stall out but as i would put pressure on the gas, after a sudden stop ( in drive ) it would rem up as if it were in neutral and after rems came down it would "catch" and drive fine.

Two - If i shift into neutral and stroll to a light and stop then put my car back into drive, the car usually stalls out unless i have my momentum to keep me going forward.

Three - Car is now idling very rough (back and forth feeling). The engine looks as if it is literally moving backwards and forwards struggling to keep steady or get airflow to it. The check engine light just turned on and soon afterwards I turned the ac off and on again and it sounds like it's running but no air is coming directly out of the vents ( except toward drivers pedals). When I accelerate the car drives fine, doesn't seem to have a problem shifting or anything at high speeds, only when idling.

I live in the desert and drive my car as a runner and it's very hot in the summertime so I usually keep my ac on pretty high. Also my MPGs has been suffering lately, only getting about 250 miles per fill up when usually i get 260 to 300 depending on how much driving in traffic/highway and how much I run the ac.

I'm not the most knowledgable on cars but I'm working on that. I wonder if the problem is airflow related? Please help with any info possible. Thanks
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Your vent problem could be the clue here. I'm thinking you knocked a vacuum hose loose while doing some of that work.
Ran down to autozone and got a check on my engine light being on and this is the codes they gave me...

P0401 - egr system fault - ecm detected too little flow on egr system
P0174 - fuel trim bank two condition - ecm detected a rich or lean airfuel ration condition on engine bank two
P0171- fuel trim bank on condition - computer has recognized a rich or lean condition on one engine bank only
P2197 - lack of heated oxygen sensor - bank 2 sensor 1
P2195 - lack of heated oxygen sensor back 1 sensor 1

I'm not sure but i'm thinking it might be the egr blocked or something and maybe it's causing the other conditions to occur like a trickle affect. I'm not really sure where to start attacking this problem. I was htinking of taking it down to ford but i'm not so sure i want to be ripped off if it's something i can fix fairly easily by myself.
All of those can be caused by a vacuum leak. I still think that's your problem.

Check the engine bay for any loose hoses. It may help to have the engine running and listen for hissing noises.
I took out the EGR valve which i figured was the bulk of the problem. The mechanic at autozone told me that if i take off the egr plug on top and turned the car on and felt for suction and if there was none then it was probably the egr valve clogged. I sprayed some carbon cleaner in it and just waiting now. Could it be the EGR solenoid? The mechanic said they're often prone to failure in fords.

Update- I do think it's possible it could be a leak now because of the ac problem. I listened again to the engine and it sounds as if it might be coming from the back side of the engine, where i cannot see or get to. It sounds like air is escaping back there and maybe that is causing failure in egr and the ac vents as well? Would it be better for me to just take it into pepboys and let them find the problem? I just don't know where to start. I didn't think i messed with anything back there when i changed the alternator...
Zepp774 said:
Could it be the EGR solenoid? The mechanic said they're often prone to failure in fords....
What he is refering too.
This is easy to check first. Just maybe one of the hoses are bad.......... :shrug:
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OK, so here's the dizzle. I just took apart the whole engine and threw a bunch of shit around and now it's running like a corvette.... That's what I wish happened lol. I swapped out the DPFE sensor after a desperate attempt that it might solve the issue, which of the engine light problem it did; Ford charged me $116 for the DPFE sensor. Car runs a small amount better but I also took out the throttle body and cleaned it (fixed my cruise controll!). I cleaned my MAF air flow sensor which seemed to help a bit but my engine is still grumbling.

When I first turned on the engine it ran smoothe but shortly after it began grumbling again. I put some pressure on the gas peddle and listened and felt for air flow very carefully. There was a lot of air coming out of the space between my engine(V6) ,battery, and air intake system. It WAS NOT coming out of my air flow system but seems as if it is underneath all of those components. How hard is it to find a vaccuum leak like this? Is it expensive to fix these kind of air leaks? Also tried out my AC and it was running but only blowing the air out of the front window vents?! Any ideas what would cause that? Is it possible this leak is causing my AC and engine to behave like this or is it most likely two seperate issues? I do run my AC on max a lot during the summertime because it's a desert out here...
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