Engine idle RPM


My 2000 Ford Taurus idle speed on a cold start up is high enough I must keep my foot pressed fairly hard on the brake pedal to avoid leaving the garage too fast. What is the correct cold start up idle speed for the 3.0 litre V-6?


did this just start? sticking choke?
only cold weather?..choke is engaged?
does it idle normally when warm? if so…check choke.

That’s how I would begin to diagnose the problem.


This probably the IAC (Idle Air Control), to confirm this you really need to get a tech to scan it. I think your local Autozone may be able to lend you the scanner to confirm this. The derived scanner codes should pinpoint the problem.

Cleaning up the throttle assembly with some carb cleaner and a toothbrush might fix this.

Another alternative is to disconnect the battery for 30 minutes to clear the EFI learned strategies.


Have my own scanner. No problem w Idle Air Control indicated.

High idle (1200 rpm when cold)

Checked voltage to controller ok.

While doing this forgoe and left key on all night. Battery dead in am.

Still had problem when restarted after battery charge.


1200 RPM when cold is normal from my point of view.
If you are having issues controlling the car immediately after start up, wait a few moments. The idle shouldn’t stay that high any longer than 30 seconds after startup unless it’s exceptionally cold outside.



I agree, 1200 is ‘normal’, but should only sustain for a max of 60 seconds according to the specs.


Did you forget that the computer has to relearn, and set, a reference point of the iac after battery power has been reduced (by disconnect, or whatever)? Does your manual cover the computer-to-iac reference point? It might take a couple of drive cycles.