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The idle air control valve (or IAC) helps to regulate the amount of stress placed on the engine, ensuring it is not overworked. This valve counters the strain on the engine that occurs when the air conditioning is turned on or when lights are activated. When the engine is cold, the IAC valve helps to get it started.
If it breaks down on you or starts to malfunction, then you are going to have to get it replaced. The cost of that, on average, will be between $115 and $500. You will likely pay about $70 for labor and anywhere from $45 to just over $400 for parts.
IAC Valve Replacement Cost Comparison
|Parts & Labour||12 months||$120-$399|
|Parts & Labour||12 months||$131-$415|
|Parts & Labour||12 months||$128-$419|
|Parts & Labour||24 months||$110-$430|
What Is IAC Valve Replacement?
Once the problem has been diagnosed, and you know it is the IAC valve that needs replacing, this is a simple procedure. It may require some expensive parts, but it can be finished in about an hour. If you let the problem go on for a while without doing anything about it, however, then it may become far more expensive. You may even be looking at replacing the engine.
Benefits of IAC Valve Replacement
By getting this problem fixed and the valve replaced, you can enjoy a car that doesn’t stall anymore. It will be a far more reliable vehicle, once this valve has been repaired. You’ll also be protecting your engine against undue wear and tear, saving you money over the long run.
What Is Done during IAC Valve Replacement?
Your mechanic is going to start diagnosing the problem by checking your car’s computer (scanning it) for any problem codes. These will tell him what the computer thinks the issue is and give him an idea of what needs to be fixed.
Then, the mechanic will check the electrical connections and look for leaks. After all that, he can remove the old IAC valve, if it is faulty, and replace it with a new valve. Afterwards, he will clean out the manifold ports on the intake, getting rid of any carbon buildup there. He will also clear the engine light and then test the car to make sure everything is working as it should be.
When to Get an IAC Valve Replacement
In general, you will need to replace the IAC valve every three or four years. This will keep carbon from accumulating in the valve and causing you problems.
The most common sign that your IAC valve is malfunctioning is that your engine will stall. That means that the engine is not being regulated as it should be, and too many other operations are overloading it.
This is something you can get fixed when it starts to bother you. Eventually, you will ruin your engine by allowing it to stall and overload so much, but for a short while, you will just have to deal with the problem of stalling, for the most part.
How to Save Money on IAC Valve Replacement
If you have the tools for this job and you can properly diagnose the problem, you can do most of all the repairs yourself. Scanning the computer and clearing the check engine light may not be something you have tools for, but everything else is simple. So, if you want to save money that way, it’s an option for the determined DIYer.
Another way to save money is to source the valve yourself. You may find it cheaper than what the mechanic is charging you. You can also save on labor if you shop around, but you likely won’t save much for this relatively simple repair.
Sample IAC Valve Replacement Costs