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melhadri

98' Lexus Es300 Stalling

45 posts in this topic

HELP! I have a 98' Lexus ES300 w/ 80k miles. The car sporadically (once a week) stalls at idle (stop at traffic light) after driving highway RPM's however the car doesnt shut off.

Key Observations:

1. My check engine light hasnt been initiated.

2. The acceleration and performance has degraded. Engine runs rough.

3. During stalling, the headlights dim then brighten dim then brighten...

4. During stalling, I smell a bad odor...possibly bad gas...something from the exhaust.

5. Stalling creates noise such as: pushing gas pedal then releasing gas pedal pushing the gas pedal then releasing the gas pedal...

6. If I turn the car off and wait for 15+ minutes, the car will start without any problems or stalling.

7. If I turn the car off and wait between 1-3 minutes, the car struggles to start and sometimes cuts off.

8. Switching gears while stalling didnt make a difference.

9. Car has stalled in rainy warm and rainy cold conditions. Also in dry warm and dry cold conditions. Interestingly, the majority of the stalling occurs subsequent to washing the car or rainy days.

10. Car has stalled with high, moderate and low levels of gas.

11. The stalling mostly occurs in the evenings, after sitting for 4 or more hours.

12. Drive between 65-80 mph on highway.

Troubleshooting Attempts:

1. Applied Fuel Injector Cleaner and Complete Fuel Injector Cleaner (Valvoline)

2. New Air Filter

3. Throttle Body Clean-Up (after this service the stalling stopped for about a month)

4. Toyota Dealer removed EGR valve for a week or so, to see if the problem still occured. * Car didnt stall at all during this period. Lexus Dealer reconnected the EGR valve and car stalled that same evening. (Dealer washed car also)

5. I am up to date with all maint. except for a tune up. (Uncertain if previous owner tuned the car up at 60k miles)

6. Asked Dealer if fuel filter needed replaced and they stated "Lexus/Toyota filters are Life-time filters...no need to replace them." ?????

7. Changed gas stations. (now using BP and Shell)

Considering:

1. Clean EGR valve

2. Clean Idle Air Control Valve

3. Tune-Up

4. Replace Fuel Filter

5. Inspect Ignition Coil

As you can see I am reluctant on replacing emissions components b/c the cost clearly outweights the benefits; unless I am 85-100% certain that it will solve the problem.

Any suggestions? Your help will be greatly appreciated.

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WOW

i must say i commend you on making a more than excellent first post

this is better than most vintage members

but truthfully your problem is common

normally i tell people to seach but from the time you spent to give such a detailed question i will spell it out for you.

Your problem is carbon

all 97-01 1mz-fe engines have it

you need to clean your iacv egr and throttle body.

best bet is to look for a local place to do a motorvac then if nessacary remove the iacv and clean it

their are atleast 100 posts on the problem some with pics

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Dealer quotes:

1. Clean EGR valve--Dealer states "Cannot clean EGR valve, only replace."

2. Clean IACV--"$120-$160"

Would it be of any concern to have another service unit (ex: Valvoline, Pep Boys...) conduct these services? Personally, it seems like a scam to pay over $100 for cleaning these valves or is it worth it?

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It shouldn't be a problem to have it done by somebody else because the job is not that terribly difficult, well at least EGR cleaning. Find a shop that you trust to do the work though because personally I wouldn't let just anyone touch my engine.

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personally almost any other with a socket set cna do it themselves in about 2 hours and a $10 can of throttle body cleaner and an old toothbrush.

I only say 2 hours because you cna go slow

fastest is probably 30 minutes for experiance members.

the egr can and has been cleaned by others.

I would pay 2 hours max for shop time

see if you can negotiate with the dealer to do it since it doesn't involve replacing anything

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personally almost any other with a socket set cna do it themselves in about 2 hours and a $10 can of throttle body cleaner and an old toothbrush.

I only say 2 hours because you cna go slow

fastest is probably 30 minutes for experiance members.

the egr can and has been cleaned by others.

I would pay 2 hours max for shop time

see if you can negotiate with the dealer to do it since it doesn't involve replacing anything

I am having similiar problems with my 1993 Lexus. What exactly is an EGR valve? I am running out of options myself. Thanks.

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From my understanding, the EGR valve is the main emissions component in the exhaust gas system.

What attempts have you made to resolve the stalling?

I am going to take the valued help and advice from these guys above; "clean your iacv egr and throttle body."

However, a couple dealers emphasized:

"cleaning the EGR valve will not be 100% successful b/c the clean-up procedure doesn't navigate far enough within the emissions components...the EGR valve needs replacement...a malfunction in the EGR valve will not initiate a check engine light b/c its mechanical.

New EGR valve and labor: ~$300

RIDICOULOUS...such a waste of money!

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melhadri,

The idle problem is quite common on Toyota and Lexus cars and is usually caused by a dirty Idle Air Control (IAC) valve. The same problem occurred on my wife's 98 ES300 at 45,000 miles. Cleaned the valve (and throttle body) myself, with no further problems.

Some dealers clean the valve, while others replace it to minimize callbacks. Toyota and Lexus dealers are well acquainted with the problem.

Martin T.

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I am under the impression that cleaning these components is a simple task. Does anyone have documentation that includes instructions on locating and cleaning the IACV and EGR Valves? Thanks for the help.

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FYI

Check engine light intiated during stalling for the first time. I retrieved two codes:

1. PO402: EGR Flow Excessive

2. P1411: Manfacurer Contrl. Auxiliary Emission Controls

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Update:

1. Mechanic cleaned and inspected the IACV & EGR valve. ($45)

2. Fuel injector service. ($100)

Do I still need a motorvac or is the fuel injector service good enough?

Thanks for all the help and advice. The car feels much more powerful however I will give it a couple wks before assessing improvments.

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for the same price as a "fuel injection service" you could have had a motorvac

but i don;t know what your guy did to service it, he may have dropped a can of cleaner in the tank for all i know?

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Update:

1. Mechanic cleaned and inspected the IACV & EGR valve. ($45)

2. Fuel injector service. ($100)

Do I still need a motorvac or is the fuel injector service good enough?

you tell us,

Subsequent to the the work you had performed, is the car still stalling after highway speeds???

steviej

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I was having difficulties finding someone with a motorvac machine around my area. The mechanic said that he hooked my car up to a fuel injector machine which supposively cleans the carbon throughout most/all of the emissions components.

The car did not stall subsequent to the work performed. I noticed the rough idling has disappeared however the stalling may still exist which is why I have to wait a few weeks before feeling comfortable.

I will obtain the specs of the fuel injector machine. I hear 'motorvac' does wonders.

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it dones really do wonder but returns the car back to the way it shuold be.

btw what octane gas do you use?

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Most of the time: 89 Plus

Recently (within past month): 93 Premium

I am going to stick with 93 for a while. What grade of gas do you recommend?

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I use 94 in everything i own.

I am taking a non scientific survey and so far it seems people with o2 sensor and carbon problems are using low grade not premium.

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Good Idea.

I would be interested in seeing the results subsequent to completion. Today, I tried the 94 grade from Sunoco. Which gas station do you use?

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93 octane from Exxon or Mobil (only cause I got that neat SpeedPass thingie).

steviej

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I really hate to continue with this specific post however, the stalling has reappeared. After hitting a pot hole and slowing down b/c of a stop sign....STALL STALL STALL.

Discovered:

* I opened the trunk and looked for the unusual. I noticed a pipe/tube located directly in the central lower front part of the car. Since, I am unfamiliar with the name of the part I will describe its attributes. It is attached vertically to 3 splitting pipes which lie above it. These 3 pipes are connected horizontally to some engine component. The main point is this: after driving the car for 30 minutes, the pipes were glowing RED, almost like a lava color. I will check today but I have a strong believe that it only glows red when it stalls.

All advice and suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks.

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Friend's Perspective:

"Well it sounds like the EGR valve, & it sounds like it is passing exhaust all the time & running WAY too hot & is going to fry something if you don't tend to it.

I still think, because of the codes you posted earlier, maybe it's the EGR control, rather than the EGR itself, thats the root cause of the problem. If the control is defective & constantly passing vacuum to the EGR valve, it'll remain open & constantly passing hot exhaust gasses back into the intake manafold, when it shouldn't be. It'll also run EXTRA hot like this."

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*** Correction ***

I opened the hood, not the trunk. LOL.

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Highlighted within the red is the tubes I am referring to.post-15420-1108498091_thumb.jpg

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The part you are describing is the exhaust manifold, and it shouldn't be glowing red hot. By looking at your picture I noticed two things, your exhaust manifold looks like it's in bad shape, and secondly you have VVT-i, which to my knowledge wasn't available until the 1999 model year. Is your ES300 a 1999 and not a 1998? My second observation has nothing to do with your problem, but I was just wondering. As far as the exhaust manifold, glowing red is not a good sign and it looks like there is a dent in the center pipe. I would check the 02 sensor in the exhaust manifold to make sure it's okay, due to high heat you're describing (it's probably okay though).

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I should have mentioned this earlier but the pic is not a representation of my car. You are correct, the pic is of a 2001 ES300. I have a 1998 ES300. What other factors are involved with the red coloring in the exhaust manifold? Any troubleshooting ideas?

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