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Your Car's Best Friend!
Your Car's Best Friend!

3 Common Signs of Throttle Body Deposits

throttle body
Your car depends on a steady stream of fresh air to generate its power. The faster you go, the more air your car needs. The flow rate of air moving into your engine lies under the control of the component known as the throttle body. Each time you press down on the gas pedal, a special flap inside the throttle body opens wider.
This flap may be referred to as either the throttle body blade or the butterfly. The wider the blade opens, the more air passes through your throttle body to the intake manifold. When you let up on the gas, the blade's opening grows narrow, restricting air flow. If you don't give your car any gas, then the blade will close all the way.
Over time, the throttle body tends to accumulate deposits which affect the overall performance of a car in unwanted ways. Unfortunately, many people fail to recognize the signs of excessive throttle body deposits. This article will boost your automotive troubleshooting knowledge by outlining three common signs of throttle body deposits.
1. High Idle Speeds
Deposits become especially problematic when they start to impede the free movement of the throttle body blade. Often deposits become thick enough to prevent the blade from closing all the way - even when you take your foot completely off the gas or put your car in idle. As a result, air continues moving into the intake manifold.
Although your car's computer recognizes that the transmission is not engaged, the car has to increase the amount of fuel entering the intake manifold in order to compensate for the extra air. Otherwise, your engine would stall entirely. Instead, you may notice that your car's engine seems to rev up too much higher than usual speeds while in idle.
If engine deposits are at fault, having your throttle body cleaned should be enough to resolve this issue. In that case, the throttle body blade will be able to close entirely when your car enters idle.
2. Engine Stalling
Even when your throttle body's blade closes entirely, some air has to get through to the intake manifold. Otherwise, your engine would stall. This air flows through a special tunnel known as the idle air bypass. This bypass provides just enough air to keep your engine running while your car is in idle.
Unfortunately, the small interior dimensions of the idle air bypass make it susceptible to accumulating deposits. As these deposits grow thicker, they begin to impede the flow rate of air. At a certain point, your engine will no longer be able to receive enough air to keep it running while the throttle blade is closed. 
As a result, your car will display a greater and greater tendency stall out when you put it in idle. As with blade deposits, the answer here involves a good, thorough cleaning. Restoring proper airflow through the idle air bypass should alleviate the stalling.  
3. Erratic Performance
Throttle body deposits don't always lead to such uniform signs of trouble. Instead, the throttle body deposits may result in general erratic performance from your vehicle. This kind of erratic behavior stems from the deposits' negative effect on the internal sensors used to regulate the throttle body and related components.
As deposits become more excessive, your car's computer has a harder time monitoring such things as the flow rate and temperature of air. The incorrect information the car computer receives causes the computer to make unnecessary changes. These changes often cause your car to inexplicably rev up or die down at unpredictable times.
Ensuring proper functioning from your throttle body doesn't take much. Regular inspections and cleanings should be enough to keep things working right. For more information, please contact Columbus' car pros at White's Automotive Center.
White's Automotive Center
1509 Wynnton Road
Columbus, GA 31906
Phone: 706-323-1060
Business Hours:
Monday - Friday: 7:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
Saturday: 7:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.