How to Clean the Idle Air Control Valve on Toyota?

An Idle Air Control Valve is a device or valve that opens and closes for the flow of liquid or air in a vehicle’s engine.

The function of an idle air control valve is to maintain a constant idle speed of the vehicle’s engine by controlling the required air. It acts as a bypass of the throttle body plate.

An idle air control valve gets dirty on the go. Sometimes it hinders the performance of the engineer.‌‌ Then the idle air control valve has to be cleaned.

So how do you clean an Idle air control valve Toyota? When do you realize it should be cleaned? How much time and money does it take to do a cleanup? We will know the answers to all these questions in this article.

When Should You Clean the Idle Air Control Valve Toyota?

So now the question, is how do you understand your Toyota’s idle air control valve should be cleaned. Okay, for your convenience, here are a few notable signs. If these are observed in your Toyota, then you need to clean the idle air control valve.

Rough and Weak Idling

A normal idle air control valve is characterized by consistent airflow in the engine. But when there is an inconsistent flow of air in the engine, you must understand that there must have been some disturbance. 

You will hear a variety of annoying noises from under the hood. In short, you will come to know that something bad is happening to your vehicle.

Shutting Down Again After Turning on

If the idle air control valve is blocked, it works abruptly. That means it helps the engine airflow occasionally. When it is running, your vehicle is turned on. 

On the other hand, when the idle air control valve stops working, the running engine stops. If you have any of these symptoms in your Toyota, it means you need to clear the idle air control valve.

Trouble Starting the Engine

For an engine to start, it must have the proper airflow in it. But when the idle air control valve is blocked, i.e. needs to be cleaned, it does not allow consistent airflow in the engine. 

Which makes it difficult for you to start your Toyota’s engine. Even sometimes the engine does not start too.

The Check Engine Lights Are Illuminated

Another notable symptom of the problem is that the check engine lights are on. If the engine control module detects a problem with the idle air control valve system, it will turn on the warning light on your dashboard. 

Although the check engine lights are illuminated due to other problems so first, we have to be sure what is the reason behind it.

Engine Will Stall

If the idle air control valve needs to be cleaned, another serious problem arises and that is that the engine starts to stall. If the air control system fails, your Toyota engine will stall causing you not to run it.

As well as the idle speed of your vehicle becomes stagnant. Causing you to feel an unusual idle motion. Also occasionally an increasing idle speed can disrupt your driving which is more than once less than once.

Backfiring

When the idle air control valve stops or obstructs the proper airflow in the engine, there is not enough air in it. As a result, the air-to-fuel mixed ratio of the engine is turned off. 

Then some fuel remains in the spark. You know very well that the fuel used in your Toyota quickly spreads into the system. When you want to start the engine, there is a possibility of backfire.

How Much Time Do You Need to Clean the Idle Air Control Valve Toyota?

Exactly how long your Toyota idle air control valve will take to clean depends on who will do the cleaning. If you want to do this yourself, it will most likely take about 15 to 20 minutes. 

On the other hand, if you decide not to do the work yourself but to choose a mechanic, then the work will be completed in about 10 minutes.

Cost of Cleaning Idle Air Control Valve Toyota

Exactly how much it will cost to clean your Toyota idle air control valve will depend on whether you do it yourself or not. If you want to do this yourself, there is no extra cost except for a few tools. 

On the other hand, if you take the help of a mechanic, you will not have to pay for the equipment, but you will have to pay the mechanic. It is estimated that it costs approximately $70 to $120 to clean a Toyota idle air control valve.

How to Clean Idle Air Control Valve Toyota?

So now we don’t know how to clean your Toyota idle air control valve. But before that, you have to make sure that the necessary equipment is ready.

The equipment needed to clean a Toyota idle air control valve is:

  • Work gloves; 
  • Clean cloth; 
  • A screwdriver; 
  • A wrench.

To properly clean your Toyota idle air control valve, follow the steps below.

Locate the Idle Air Control Valve

First, identify the idle air control valve of your vehicle. It is usually located in the intake manifold behind the throttle body. Before you start cleaning, make sure your engine is off and cool.

Remove the Intake Hose

Notice that there are two intake hoses attached to the throttle groove. Remove the hoses.

Disconnect the Battery Cable

Now you need to disconnect the battery of the vehicle. To do this, carefully loosen the screw of the negative cable attached to the battery with a screwdriver and disconnect the cable by pulling.

Disconnect the Electric Plug

Remove the electric plug attached to the idle air control valve. There are three intake hoses with valves. Remove the three hoses too.

Remove the Screw

Notice that two screws are used to secure the air intake hose. The hose is attached to the throttle by clamps which you need to remove. Keep in mind to use a suitable screwdriver when removing any screws. It will not damage the head of the screw.

Disconnect All Connections to Idle Air Control Valve and Remove Gasket

You need to disconnect all connections on the idle air control valve. Then the gasket has to be removed. However, in some cases, you may need to replace the gasket completely. Discard the old gasket and attach the new one.

Apply Cleaner

Now it’s time to clean your Toyota idle air control valve. All you have to do is spray the carbon cleaning product in the valve. 

Remove excess cleaning products with a clean towel after spraying. Now give it some time. Follow the instructions to know the exact time. 

Although waiting 10 to 15 minutes is enough. Now notice if the dirt has been cleaned. If negative, repeat the application process.

Clean the Throttle Body and Intake Passages

Take carbon cleaning products on a towel to clean the inside of the idle air control valve passage and the outside of the throttle body. Allow about 30 minutes for the application to dry.

Re-mount the Idle Air Control Valve

When the cleaning products have been applied to all the places, the cleaning work has been completed. Now you have to re-mount the idle air control valve. Use a new gasket for this. Finally, tighten the screws and bolts well. Check if everything is OK.

Check the Ultimate Result

So all the cleaning work is complete. Now check if the idle air control valve is working properly. 

Turn on the engine and leave it running for some time. If the valve is cleaned properly, your engine will perform well and sound good. Besides, idle will run stably. 

On the other hand, if the system does not work properly after cleaning, go to the nearest approved mechanic as a new idle air control valve may need to be completely replaced.

Conclusion

It is very important for your Toyota idle air control valve to perform properly. Depending on this system, consistent air flows in the engine. 

At the same time, if the engine is not properly ventilated, it does not give a stable performance. In other words, proper maintenance of an idle air control valve is vital for your vehicle. 

So if any problem with the air control valve is observed in your Toyota, clean it without delay. If necessary, completely replace the idle air control valve without worrying about spending money.