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2.2 miss at idle (sometimes)

2473 Views 9 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  zmontgomery
I posted this over in the "other models" section as well, but since there is a bit more traffic over here, and I know there are a few of you with 2.2 gen 1's I figured I'd see if I could get some suggestions. I have a 93 Legacy with the 2.2 that is having a bad miss at idle from time to time. It is bad enough sometimes that the car will stall out. The thing that gets me is how sporadic it is. It will run great for a few weeks and then this issue will show up as it pleases. Sometimes turning the car off and starting again cures it, sometimes turning off the A/C makes it better (but not 100%) and if I just keep driving it as is, it normally clears up after a short while. I recently replaced plugs, and checked over all the vacuum lines, as well as made sure there were no stray wires rotted or grounding out. Has anyone had this happen? since it happens more frequently with the A/C on could it possibly be an idle or a/c solenoid? any insight it appreciated.
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never had the problem but id check your plug wires for carbon tracking/burns to ground. an IAC wouldn't cause a miss but could cause a low idle. though all would smooth out after the throttle is even slightly opened.

is accelerating and cruise smooth?
accelerating has been relatively smooth when this happens, cruising has been fine. it is my girlfriends car, so I don't drive it everyday though. Apparently today it almost died again, and she told me it had a hard time accelerating. However it only happened once. Car was driven about 20 miles in stop and go and had no issues afterwards.
Did you check the spark plug wires up at the coil pack? It's not uncommon for the metal end on the spark plug cable to get corroded. I have some info here:

Of course new plug wires aren't a bad idea either if they are old. OEM are really the best and they are pretty inexpensive too.
I am going to check over everything again today when I get home from work. The wires are relatively new. I will pull apart and check for corrosion (seeing how we live on an island that could be possible) my girlfriend said it died a few times this morning. One thing she brought up was that it only happens when the car is cold and being run for the first time of the day. The problem doesn't show itself any other time. Do these cars have a cold idle circuit of some sort? If there is a solenoid or relay that is part of that? maybe it's the culprit?
So after searching around a bit today I think the IAC needs to be taken off and cleaned. Apparently they can get gunked up and stuck open, which makes the car run like crap when cold. Going to check it out when I get home. Hopefully cleaning it will solve the problem
When was the lastime you had a tuneup? This can be an IACV, Tuneup, O2 sensor.
Cleaned iac, and everything is tuned up. I even reset the ecu. Seems to be ok now. Drove it yesterday and it had a slight miss that came and went in the first 5 min of driving then everything was fine....weird. Girlfriend took it to work this morning and said everything was good. We'll see how the rest of the week goes
ok, so it has been a while, but maybe I can get someone to chime in....problem has come back with the car missing and stumbling really bad when it first gets going in the morning. It has happened going down the highway a few times as well. Surging/missing/lack of power. The only thing that clears it up is to pull over and turn it off. About 95% of the time upon restart it will act like nothing has happened at all. After the car is warm and has been driven the problem will not show itself for the rest of the day. Like I said before, the IAC was cleaned, wires are good, plugs are new, throttle body, MAF, and knock sensor were cleaned, and I checked the grounds. I am getting no check engine light. Some people have suggested maybe it's the coil, but couldn't this be ruled out since once the car has either been warmed up or stopped and restarted it runs perfectly smooth? I'm starting to run out of ideas of things left to check/replace
so after chasing this around for a few weeks the problem has finally been solved! One of the spark plug wires was at fault. Although I took them off and inspected them, one of them must of had some very very small spots that were worn out. I feel like an idiot for not just replacing them from the get-go. The only way I found this out was driving it the other night it was running terrible, and upon opening the hood to take a look (in the dark mind you) I was able to see the number 1 wire arcing in several different areas. Bought new wires the next day and car runs better than ever!
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