Engine stalling at idle?

Tiny
ESDOTGRUNDY
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
Engine Mechanical problem
1994 Chevy Cavalier 4 cyl Wheel Drive Type unknown Automatic 150000 miles

My 94 Cav sometimes stalls. And I have noticed the oil light fading in and out at stoplights. It normally stalls about 3-5 miles after the check engine light comes on but if I turn the car off and then back on the light goes out and no stalling (actually it buys me a few more miles before the stalling). I had it tested and was told that it was my EGR. I then replaced the EGR and the problem never went away. Had it tested again and was told EGR, again! Someone told me about an Idle control sensor(?). Anyway, I got what I thought to be one from salvage (has a bolt w/ a spring around it and has a plug on it) replaced mine. When I did this the engine revved for a min then idled fine. But the check engine light still comes on and then it stalls. What's next, I need a solution to my problem. And please give it to me easy, i'm a novice here.
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Saturday, March 15th, 2008 AT 11:28 AM

53 Replies

Tiny
MERLIN2021
  • EXPERT
Get a can of spray gumout, spray the vac lines and maniflod area, when the idle changes, youve found the leak! You want the engine running and spray on the outside but do direct the stream onto the hoses, if it is a vacuum leak, the engine idle will change speed, then you have detected a leak, repair the vacuum leak and see how it runs! Also test for codes and post the codes here...


https://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/62217_95_OlderGM_13.jpg


Cross these two terminals as shown, then turn the key on. Count the flashes, a 22 will flash as 2 flashes then a short pause, then 2 flashes, if more than one code is stored, the pause will be longer. The codes will display three times and end with 12. Write them down and post here.

You may have a vacuum leak or the throttle actuator needs to be serviced here are two guides to help us fix the problem.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/stall-at-idle

and

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/throttle-actuator-service

and

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/idle-air-control-valve-service

Please run down these guides and report back.
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Saturday, March 15th, 2008 AT 11:36 AM
Tiny
MIRACLE JOHNSON
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
Transmission problem
1994 Chevy Cavalier Automatic

I have a 94 chevy cavalier that's been sitting for over a year I recently fixed it up & ok so I driving for about 20 mins & stop at the light the car cut off. It started back up with no problem I put it in gear & it cut off again& again.I let it sit for a hour started it up & it went in gear. Later that night it cut off again at the light but this time it started shaking/vibrating? I don't know what's wrong.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:19 PM (Merged)
Tiny
WRENCHER1
  • MEMBER
You may have TCC (torque converter control) solenoid sticking meaning that it's staying in overdrive when you stop. If you look straight down at the transmission, you will see a plug in the front of the transmission. Try unplugging that and see if the problem goes away. If so, you will have to get the TCC solenoid replaced.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:19 PM (Merged)
Tiny
STAJIMAMA
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
I have a 1994 cavalier that has approx. 130,000 miles on it. When I am driving for a nice distance and it has fully warmed up it will stall and die when braking. You can start it right back up but when switching into drive it cuts right back off. It won't drive until it has cooled down for 15-20 minutes and it does it again once it gets warm again. When it first started, the car would shake violently then cut off I put a neutral switch on and the person that was driving it last said that when it cut off this last time it didn't shake. Can someone plz help this car is killing my pockets I just had to get a head gasket fixed and a heater core. Kind of ironic that this didn't happen until that shop "fixed" my car. I think they messed my car up and did things to it that weren't needed ( I had intended on only getting a radiator flush) but they called with all these "problems" that "needed" to be fixed and on top of that my car now has a small anti-freeze leak plz plz plz help
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:19 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SNYDES65COUPE
  • MEMBER
I have a 1993 sunbird with a 3.1L and the auto transmision and it is doing the same thing.I was told it is the torque converter lock up sensor but I do not know what one it is on the transmission
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:19 PM (Merged)
Tiny
STAJIMAMA
  • MEMBER
I am so elated. My friend at work suggested that I have someone take off this switch that is located on the transmission he said it was blue and I also had the person clean out my throttle body. I couldnt tell you which one worked but I know it was free because my friend did it and it worked! I've driven my car for approximately 20miles on the freeway and about 3 mileson the street today. So, hopefully this will help you too. I also have an automatic transmission by the way.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:19 PM (Merged)
Tiny
OLYMPICCONFUSION
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 190 MILES
I have a 94 cavalier that I had to jump start this morning due to the dome light being left on and killing the battery. It started up fine but immediatly started surging and stalled when I put it in gear. It ran fine yesterday. I'm rather confused
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JDL
  • EXPERT
Sometimes when battery voltage is lost, the system has to go through an idle relean. It should learn it on it's own.

You need to make sure the battery has a full charge. How long since a tune-up? Any applicable mil codes? You can check those, yourself.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SNAPHAP
  • MEMBER
  • 1993 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 82,000 MILES
My cavalier just had a head gasket replaced by a qualified mechanic.
The motor runs and sounds good until after 8min. Of run time when the car starts to buck when it comes to a stop. I put the car in neutral and its fine. I put the car back into drive or reverse, it comes to a violent hault! When cold fine- when warm not fine!
There is a blue 4prong plug in front on the trans that has been disconnected since we purchased the car 6yrs and 45000 miles ago? Wacha think?
No problems like this before the repair!
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
The blue 4 prong plug is the TCC connector (torque convertor clutch).

This will lock convertor at a specified speed, rpm and coolant temp.

The fact that it was unplugged, indicates the previous owner had a problem with TCC and unplugged the connector to mask the problem.

Symptoms of a bad TCC will be that the car will stall when coming to a stop, and when put in drive, it will stall again.

The TCC will have to be replaced, and generally can be done without removing trans. The TCC is a solenoid.

The mechanic may have reconnected it, ran the car and then disconnected it, causing the TCC to lock and not release.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
KICKCHUB
  • MEMBER
  • 1993 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 150,000 MILES
I just purchased this car from a private owner. Engine and transmission have both been rebuilt recently (5,000 miles). Doing great until today. When I slow down to turn it will stall. Cranks right back up and continues on. Doesn't do it everytime. This started after the car was jacked up on the side the gas tank is on. The car had been sitting for a year or more. Could there be trash in the tank that was stirred up when the car was let back down? Tank is full of gas. I hope you can help.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:
It could be dirt. Two things. First, try replacing the fuel filter. If that doesn't help, check the fuel pump pressure. Let me know if the filter doesn't work and I can explain how to check fuel pressure.

Joe
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SARGE995
  • MEMBER
  • 1993 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 62,000 MILES
My 1993 Chevy Cavalier has begun to idle rough, it coughs and sputters a bit, but when you come to a stop, you really notice how rought it is. It has started to stall at lights and stop signs, you can start it in park or neutral, but when you put it in drive or reverse, it stalls out again. It runs again after sitting for a little while, what can it be and is it costly? I only bought the car for 200.00 and drive it 2 miles to work. Thanks!
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:

It could be a number of things. If you only drive 2 miles to work, the car never really warms up properly. Therefore it could be a fouled plug. Not expensive to repair. However, it could be a head gasket or a vacuum leak. That can get costly. Check the oil and make sure it doesn't have coolant in it. Also, when the engine is cold, check the coolant for oil contamination.

Let me know if the check engine light is on. Also. You may want to stop at a nationally recognized auto parts store and have them scan the computer for trouble codes. They will do it for free and it may get us pointed in the right direction.

Joe
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
RAPONE
  • MEMBER
  • 1992 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
Engine Performance problem
1992 Chevy Cavalier 6 cyl Front Wheel Drive 97,000 miles

stalls when brake applied at stop light. Rpm fluctuates. Engine idle not running smoothly.

Told it may be mass air flo sensor. What is that. Expensive?
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
GTRGILBERT541
  • MEMBER
I couldn't find anything on that particular car having a Mass Air Flow Sensor it may be an oxygen sensor or a fuel throttling sensor, although if you are having problems with it idling than you might need to check the Idle Control unit(price is usually around $40.00) picture is shown below


https://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/181828_217551_1.jpg

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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JFLEY
  • MEMBER
  • 1992 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 41,000 MILES
This a great car but it just recently decided to have a problem. The car starts up and runs fine but while driving and coming to a stop the idle seesm to fall off and the car stalls. After stepping on th egas pedal and holding it at a level it will restart and is drivable but the idle must be kept up or it will stall again, even while driving and coasting with no accelaration. My daughter can't drive this way. Me maybe. Any ideas?
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
MASTERTECHTIM
  • MEMBER
Not over looking the obvious like the normal tune up. These cars had a recall for a bad intake manifold gasket leaking, causing a skip at idle, but goes away when you give it gas. You can check this by spraying carburetor cleaner at the base of the intake manifold and see if the idle changes.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JFLEY
  • MEMBER
Ok, That sounds like a plan.I'll give it a shot and get the results back uo here.

Thanks for taking the time to respond to this.
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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JFLEY
  • MEMBER
Ok, I tried that fix, but found no leak.I took out and cleaned the Idle Control Solenoid, it was gummed up and seemed to work for a while but the condition has returned. Is there a link that describes my injection/control system you may know of? Something I can read to get a handle on operations?

Thanks for your help!

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Saturday, October 10th, 2020 AT 1:20 PM (Merged)

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