How to Clean a Jetta IACV

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The Volkswagen Jetta idle air control valve should be replaced when it malfunctions, but in a pinch, you can try cleaning it. Cleaning does not always work. It depends on the amount of carbon stuck on the pintle and whether it is not working because of a stuck pintle, valve motor, wiring or computer problem. The idle air control valve changes the rpm of the vehicle while at an idle, as needed, to keep the vehicle from stalling.

Things You'll Need

  • Set of sockets
  • Screwdriver
  • Can of carburetor cleaner
  • Shop rags
  • New gasket
  • Unplug the wiring harness connector on the idle air control valve. Remove the two mounting bolts and the gasket. If the gasket sticks, clean it with the common screwdriver. Remove the idle air control valve from the engine.

  • Spray the pintle with carburetor cleaner. The pintle is the pointed piece that moves in and out of the body. Wipe it clean with shop rags. Repeat the process until no carbon is left on the pintle. You might have to use the entire can of carburetor cleaner.

  • Reinstall the idle air control valve with a new gasket. Tighten the bolts firmly but do not over-tighten them. Plug in the wiring harness connector. Start the vehicle. Put it in drive. Turn on the air conditioning. If the problem persists, replace the idle air control valve.

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