7 Problems After Cleaning Throttle Body Arise Detection

7 Problems after cleaning throttle body (Detected)

The throttle body is a vital component of a car engine. It is used to get air inside the engine for functional purposes. This component can malfunction for various reasons. Interestingly, some problems can also arise after you clean it.

In the following article, I will discuss what a throttle body is, the signs of a damaged throttle body, and several other vital factors regarding this part of an engine.

does cleaning throttle body make a difference

So, does cleaning the throttle body make a difference? Several problems can arise with the throttle body, which are listed below.

  • Grime builds up- Grime and dirt build up inside the component and thus diminishes the effectiveness of your engine. This affects the engine’s performance as well.
  • Poor fuel economy- It means that you have to spend more money on fuel. The average miles per gallon drop drastically, resulting in such a condition. If the average miles per gallon is off by 10 to 15%, your throttle body might be clogged.
  • Uneven acceleration- The car accelerates slower than usual or in sudden bursts.
  • Poor or high idle- The car may stall and take more time on start-up, but it saves some gas. In case of high idle, the engine wastes extra fuel. It is easier to start up but harder to stall.
  • Electrical problem- If the throttle body’s sensor is covered in grime or dirt, it sends out inaccurate data. Modern cars with so many electrical functions then put the car into a secondary power-reduced mode till the problem is fixed.
  • Airflow disruptions- there will be pressure problems because of uneven airflow. The performance of the car will drop eventually.
  • Check engine light- The electronic throttle control will raise an alert if the throttle body performs poorly. The ‘check engine light’ on the dashboard will glow up. Then again, there may be several reasons behind this, so it is best to check manually to see if there is some dirt or carbon around the part. 

What is the Throttle Body?

A throttle body is a tube that has a pivot and flat valve to function. It is used to control the amount of air entering the engine. Two sensors, namely, a throttle position sensor and airflow sensor, send data to the computer, and based on the information, a specific amount of fuel goes to the injectors of the engine.

Read More: How to reset throttle body sensor?

What are the signs of a bad throttle body?

There are several signs of a poorly functioning throttle body. These signs include poor acceleration or accelerating in sudden bursts, decreased average miles per gallon, the car either taking too much time to start up and stalling, or high idle. Eventually, there is a drop in overall performance.

What happens when you clean the throttle body?

When you decide to clean the throttle body on your own, everything may go okay. However, because of a simple mistake, there can be a negative consequence. The most common result of the error is ‘high idle’ or an erratic and aggressive sound the car makes when idling. The rough sound can occur because of a vacuum leak or a torn intake hose. It can happen entirely by accident even when cleaning it very carefully.

Throttle Body Cleaner – Best Cleaner

Throttle body cleaner – how to clean throttle body without removing it

How do you fix high idle after cleaning the throttle body?

High idle fixes up automatically most of the time after some days of cleaning. By turning the car on and off for a couple of days should fix the problem. However, if the problem is persistent, you might have done something wrong while cleaning the throttle body. At this point, you should take the car to a local mechanic for a proper check and repair.

Should I reset the ECU after cleaning the throttle body?

Yes, you should reset the ECU after cleaning the throttle body. There are several causes to reset, but the chief one is ‘high idle.’ Without resetting the ECU, the car will accelerate way too fast and can go out of control if the driver lacks experience. The rpm will also be very high at idle speed, making an aggressive sound. Stalling the car will become difficult as well. Hence, resetting ECU after cleaning the throttle body is essential.


How do I relearn my electronic throttle body?

Fully release the acceleration pedal and turn the ignition switch on without starting the engine for at least 2 seconds. Then keep the ignition switch off for 10 seconds. Repeat the process again.

Now, turn the ignition switch on and wait for 3 seconds before pressing and releasing the accelerator five times within 5 seconds.

After that, wait for 7 seconds and then fully depress the accelerator for 20 seconds until the ‘check engine’ light stops blinking and stays on continuously. Within 3 seconds now, release the pedal.

Start the engine and let it idle for 20 seconds and rev up the engine a few times to confirm if the idle speed is within specification or not.

How do you reset a throttle body?

You should turn on the engine and idle it in the park for 3 minutes. Initially, there will be a high rpm, but as the ECU starts to learn new idle cells, it will decrease gradually. Now, turn off the ignition for 60 seconds before turning it on in the park for 3 minutes again. After 3 minutes, the engine should idle normally.

Can you use WD40 to clean the throttle body?

No, because WD40 is not an effective cleaner for the throttle body. There will be hard deposits stuck to the throttle body, and the throttle plate will need a throttle body solvent. There are throttle body cleaners available in the market to break down carbon and other fuel-related deposits on the throttle body.

Learn about the differences between carb cleaners and air intake cleaners – which is best for you?

Can you drive with a bad throttle body?

Can a bad throttle body cause a car not to start? Driving with a damaged throttle body may not affect the car’s engine immediately. However, prolonged driving with a bad throttle body can cause the car to misfire. Oftentimes, there will be either high idle or low idle as well. Hence, it is advised to visit a mechanic as soon as possible for further inspections.

How much does it cost to fix a throttle body?

The cost of replacing the car’s throttle body ranges between $370 to $1500. Labor cost ranges from $70 to $260. The repair parts will be available within $110 to $600. Hence, the average price is around $587.

What causes a throttle body to go bad?

For today’s vehicle’s engine, the throttle body is a vital part of controlling the airflow. It can go bad for several reasons and create problems in your car. You can easily lookout for these problems and protect your engine. The reasons for which it can go bad are:

  • Carbon deposits or dirt or grime inside the housing
  • Rough idle after cleaning throttle body
  • Electrical problems
  • Leaks in Vacuum
  • If the throttle stop is incorrectly adjusted

How often should you replace the throttle body?

There is no set mileage in the case of the lifespan of a throttle body. Then again, you should give it a thorough cleaning at 75,000 miles. Cleaning it will allow the car to function smoothly, and the lifespan also increases. If you end up needing to replace your throttle body, you can learn more about the exact steps on how to change your throttle body.


The throttle body is a crucial component of a car’s engine, but you can clean it and fix the problems by yourself by following the correct procedures. Several types of issues can arise with the throttle body. However, no need to be afraid as the instructions on how to repair, clean, and service the throttle body are readily available for use.



Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *