Stalling 95 Explorer

Over the last 4 months or so I’ve shifted to working about 60 miles from home 3 days a week. So, that’s an extra 360 miles a week.

Which is awesome with high gas prices … in an suv. However, it’s paid off and I can’t afford to replace it.

It’s started stalling. Not a lot. It does it on the initial attempt to accelerate.

Is this/could this be some sort of fluid problem? Is this my punishment for not getting the oil changed more frequently?

Does this only happen when the engine is cold (“initial attempt to accelerate”)?

How up to date are you on routine maintenance, like spark plugs, air filter, etc.?

No, in fact the initial acceleration is usually a little less of a problem. It seems to have more to do with it sitting and idling.

And … not very.

If the stalling occurs when sitting at a stop, there could be a problem in the Idle Air Control circuit.

On the throttle body there’s a component called the Idle Air Control motor. This stepper motor moves to various positions to allow air into the engine under various idle conditions. If This motor fails to move to the proper position for the idle condition the engine can stall. Or if there’s debris in the idle air bleed port on the throttle body where the IAC motor moves to the proper position, but the blocked port is preventing the air from entering the engine.

The first thing to try is cleaning the throttle body. If that doesn’t work, remove the IAC motor and clean it and also the idle air bleed port and reinstall the IAC motor. If that doesn’t work, there’s probably a problem with the IAC motor.


There is a rare problem with the fuel pressure regulator sticking open. This happens at high vacuum conditions. This can be diagnosed if you replace the pump fuse with a amp meter wired into the cab. Normal current should be about 3.5A, when it drops to about 2A the engine will stall. This is a high fuel bypass system and pump current is a good predictor of pressure. The failure is an off center spring that wears the valve seat to one side. This causes the valve to stick open.

That Explorer of yours is practically indestructable. I have a 93 sport that has 225,000 miles on it and it still runs like new. I had to replace the MAS sensor once because it was stalling and running rough. However, Ford allows you to unplug this mass air-flow sensor and the car will still run - just don’t run it unplugged for long (A month or more) because your mileage will suck even worse. I can’t remember exactly where the MAS is and it may be in a different location because of the year difference between 93-95, but it will be a little black box mounted somewhere on that tube that takes air to the top of your motor It is a little bigger then a playing card, and about as thick as a deck of cards - of coarse it will have wires going into it. Just unplug it until you can afford to replace it. They’re about $100.

The MAS is on the intake pipe that comes from the Airfilter to the “throttle body”.


So, I ended up taking it into the shop (after replacing the air filter and the oil). They ran a test and determined the cam position sensor is throwing all sort of errors. They recommended replacing that and wanted $900.00.

Asked a friend - he was pretty sure we could replace it ourselves and looking on the internet it didn’t look difficult (just need to do things in a safe, clear, proper order). However, I cannot seem to find one of these things.

Is this a feasible cause of my problems? Where can I get one of these things?

I doubt it and have the feeling they are just guessing again. I can almost guarantee you will just waste more money. Just what was this test they ran? You need to give more detail on the driving conditions that the stalling occurs. You should go to and search for the problem there. Be prepared to give serious details. This board is fine for entertainment, but you won’t get serious help here.

No serious help here? Then that must include you also?


but you won’t get serious help here.

Why do you think Chris will not get serious help? Why is he different?

Ok. More details.

  1. Car is jerking slightly when driving (less noticeable over 60 mph). It is as if the flow of something is going in spurts and not at a solid constant stream.

  2. Car can stall out when idle, i.e. traffic lights, stop signs. Seems to happen AT acceleration.

  3. The check engine light is on. The computer test revealed multiple errors of the cam position sensor. NAPA auto parts says the part is obsolete and not available through their channels.

  4. Sometimes there is difficulty starting. It starts for a second then stalls.

  5. SOMETIMES, I start the car after having been parked from anywhere for 1 minute to 8 hours and the radio/clock is completely reset.

Possible diagnoses:

  1. Community members think it could be the MAS sensor.

  2. Friend (jeep driver) thinks I should consider the sparkplugs.

  3. Autocenter thinks its the cam position sensor (since it has multiple errors).

Loved your “boiling water” comment in regards to transmission fluid replacement.Comment is for OperaHouse

FYI here is a picture of the MAF (not, MAS), Mass Air Flow sensor:,APP278577/vehicleId,2155502/initialAction,partProductDetail/store,1140/partType,00151/shopping/partProductDetail.htm It’s located right after the air filter (if it had been a snake…!).
I don’t think there is a problem with the MAF. I’m thinking the problem lies in the iac (idle air control) valve, or the tps (throttle position sensor, and the throttle bore and plate; maybe, caused by carbon build up.

The truck being 13 years old, it could be parts which are coated with soot and oil. In that vein, do some cleaning. Disconnect the MAF from the air filter housing. Spray it good with MAF Cleaner (dis-assembly NOT required). With that black plastic/rubber intake tube off, spray the throttle body bore and throttle plate with Carb/Throttle Body cleaner. You could take the iac valve off (two screws) and spray its pintle and the openings to and from it, “real good”. Let it soak a few minuets. Start and fast idle until the smoke clears.

You can get an engine code scanner for about $30. Then, erase the DTC codes. Drive two, or three, “trips”. If the check engine light comes on, scan the codes, and bring those codes here for cussin’ and discussion.

Excuse me?

Ok, cleaned the MAF and the throttle body. When I openned the throttle body port, I saw a metal tube poking in and facing me. It had plenty of “crud” on it, but the rest of the assembly was pretty much spotless. I sprayed down the crud, but I couldn’t do anything along the lines of “scrubbing” that port or anything.

Performance is now … different. At idle the engine bumps from nearly 0 to 1000 rpm. Gas mileage SEEMS worse than it was/should be. It has not stalled, but it is still very cranky (lots of vibration and the revving, above).

No new news, really. It’s chugging a lot on acceleration. I’ve been meaning to, but haven’t had time to check the sparkplugs, at least.

  1. SOMETIMES, I start the car after having been parked from anywhere for 1 minute to 8 hours and the radio/clock is completely reset.

I would attack this problem first. The always on 12V to the computer and radio may have a bad connection or even the common dash ground to both these items. I repeat the suggestion that you go where people only deal with product specific related issues.