Problem With a Ford Truck Stalling & Idling Rough

by Jen Davis

When a vehicle idles poorly or stalls out, it can be dangerous for the driver and occupants. There are a number of different problems that can be responsible for your Ford truck's idling and stalling problems, which is why it is important to have the exact issue properly diagnosed before you attempt to repair the vehicle. There are several different things you should check when trying to determine what the problem is with your Ford truck.

Check engine for a vacuum leak. Vacuum leaks are normally caused by loose or broken vacuum hoses. Loose hoses affect engine airflow and will cause a vehicle to idle badly or stall out.

Check sensors. If your check engine light has come on, you can have a mechanic hook an error code reader to your vehicle's computer to get a read out of problem codes that are being generated by the computer. If the problem code indicates one of the sensors or valves,such as the O2 sensors, mass airflow sensors, the exhast gas recircculation valve or the idle air control valve, there is a good chance that fixing the problem will cure the stalling and idling problems.

Determine whether your vehicle may have gotten a bad or contaminated tank of gas. Stalling and rough idling can occur if the the vehicle has sat for more than 30 days or if the fuel was poor quality or contaminated with water. If you noticed your truck's problems began immediately or shortly after you put gas in it, you may want to add a bottle of fuel treatment to your gas tank.

Have your mechanic perform a compression test on your motor. He can use specialized equipment to determine if the engine's problems are being caused by a loss of compression due to a worn out or damaged engine that can no longer maintain pressure as necessary to keep the engine running.

Check your spark plugs. Spark plugs that are too old or have been fouled will not produce spark necessary to keep vehicle running properly. Fouled or worn out spark plugs can cause your truck to idle rough or stall intermittandly at start up.


  • close Take vehicle to a mechanic for proper diagnosis before attempting to repair.

About the Author

Jen Davis has been writing since 2004. She has served as a newspaper reporter and her freelance articles have appeared in magazines such as "Horses Incorporated," "The Paisley Pony" and "Alabama Living." Davis earned her Bachelor of Arts in communication with a concentration in journalism from Berry College in Rome, Ga.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera Golden Gate viewed from the truck image by Alex "Stranger" from