Driveability problems are often some of the most an overwhelming problems come diagnose, but an erratic idle or regular stalling top top the F-150 is regularly a faulty idle air regulate valve. A rapid cleaning or replacement of the IAC valve can frequently solve this trouble at an inexpensive price.

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This article uses to the Ford F-150 (1997-2003).

The idle air regulate (IAC) valve is provided in numerous electronic fuel-injected engines come maintain suitable engine idle. This electronically regulated valve works to differ the amount of air entering the engine while the accelerator body is closed to stabilize the idle. Over time and mileage, the is usual for carbon buildup to collect in the IAC valve and cause erratic operation. Similarly, the electronic devices that operate the valve deserve to go bad, thus causing the valve to stick opened up or closed. Symptoms of a faulty or malfunctioning IAC valve encompass hard starting, stormy or erratic idle, engine stalling, and also engine stumbling during take-off. Fortunately, the IAC valve on many Ford F-150 models are quickly accessed and also can it is in cleaned or replaced completely in a matter of minutes. This write-up will outline the removal, cleaning, and also replacement the the idle air regulate valve on 1997 to 2003 Ford F-150 models.


Materials NeededMetric wrench and also socket set1/4" or 3/8" drive ratchetCarburetor cleanerGasket coffee or razor bladeToothbrush or similar

Step 1 – eliminate throttle human body cover

Whenever functioning on your auto or truck, specifically with electrical components, it is frequently a good idea to disconnect the battery.

Disconnect the battery cable indigenous the an unfavorable (black) battery terminal. Course the cable away from the terminal to protect against accidental contact while working.Remove the accelerator body cover, i beg your pardon is typically held in ar by three small bolts, if your truck has actually one.
Figure 1. Disconnect negative battery cable.
Figure 2. Eliminate throttle body cover because that IAC valve access.

Step 2 – eliminate IAC valve

Locate the IAC valve enclosed on or close to the throttle body.Disconnect the electrical plug indigenous the IAC valve. (On the 5.4L Triton engines, that is less complicated to eliminate the valve itself before disconnecting the electrical plug.)Remove the (2) 8mm bolts securing the IAC valve in place. Be certain to collection the washers and also gasket during removal.
Figure 3. IAC valve ar on 5.4L engine.
Figure 4. IAC valve location on 4.6L engine.
Figure 5. 4.6 liter motor IAC valve electric harness plug.
Figure 6. Bolts securing IAC valve to throttle body.

Step 3 – Clean IAC valve

In part cases, the IAC valve deserve to be cleaned through carburetor cleaner to remove carbon buildup and also restore functionality. V the valve eliminated from the engine, soak the within or the valve through carb cleaner until it is totally free of gunk and buildup. A small toothbrush or comparable tool have the right to be provided to scrub away any kind of stubborn grit. Enable the valve to dry before reinstalling.

Figure 7. Spray carburetor cleaner right into the IAC valve come rinse away any buildup.
Figure 8. Dirty valve (left) vs clean valve (right).

Step 4 – Reinstall IAC valve

Whether installing the old valve or swapping in a brand-new unit, clean the accelerator body mating surface ar of every old gasket material.Position the valve in place with a new gasket and also install the 8mm bolts as well as washers. Talk the bolts to roughly 7.5 ft/lbs.Reconnect the electrical harness come the IAC valve.Reconnect the an adverse battery cable and also install accelerator body covering (if applicable).

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Pro Tip

It is highly recommended that the IAC valve gasket be replaced, together an old gasket the does not effectively seal will permit un-metered air into the engine and influence the idle.