Question about 2001 Mazda Tribute

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Problems with cold engine

My Mazda2001 Tribute has 140,000 miles and I have a problem when I start my SUV. The engine cranks right up,but begins to lurch and almost die, but it does not die. It just lurches and once I have driven for a little while it will stop. It only does this when the engine is cool, once the engine is warm it stops.

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  • Ken
    Ken Nov 02, 2008

    Replace the automatic idle valve on top the intake. It is easily replaced with two bolts and a wire plug jack. just find the air cleaner filter, move to the left and look on top for the valve.

  • laschmitz Nov 12, 2008

    I have the same thing happening to my 2001 Tribute. It starts fine, but then starts to chug and lurch and almost die. If you are driving it is OK but once you stop and watch the tach you can see the RPMs cut in 1/2 and then drop down to almost nothing. I have to put it in neutral and give it gas to keep it from doing this until it is warm runs just fine. I've had it in the shop and they have replaced the plugs, battery, cleaned the fuel injectors and it is still doing the same thing.

  • bugsbugs Nov 12, 2008

    i have replaced that valve still does it

  • ldcoleman Nov 15, 2008

    Car won't turn over from a cold start and is idle very low. Will continue to cut off until warm. Also gas pedal is sometimes very hard to press down.

  • Anonymous Nov 21, 2008

    My 2001 Tribute did this yesterday! It starts fine when it is warm though? I didn't try today!

  • mgregory379 Dec 02, 2008

    I have the same problem. Thinking it is time to replace the upper and lower intake manifold gaskets as it sounds like a vacuum problem is causing the poor idle condition. Once the engine warms up and the gaskets expand, they seal the leak and the engine runs fine. It's just keeping it running when it's cold...that's the problem. How tough is it to replace the gaskets? Can a do-it-yourselfer do it? Any step-by-step instructins out there?

  • byngton6 Jan 27, 2009

    My co-worker was having the same problem with his 2001 Tribute, I have always had luck coming to these websites to find fixes. He has had the intake manifold gaskets replaced and is still having the lurching of the RPMs and the engine acting like it wants to cut out but doesnt. He has also stated that once it is warmed up then the problem goes away and he does not have the problem in warm weather, only in cold weather (We both live in Nebraska, right now the temp is 20) He has had this vehicle in the shop numerous times, nothing seems to be fixing his problems, are there any other solutions that he is missing? I am posting this for him because he is not a computer guy. Thanks for any assistance that you can provide. The mechanic he is going to is very reliable but it seems that he cannot figure this problem out. Hope to hear a solution soon.

  • raker-tj Mar 02, 2009

    I had the same issue where engine will die after starting on cold mornings. After the air fuel sensor, the idle speed sensor and manifold gaskets were all replaced, it is still is still doing the coughing and sputtering in the mornings.

    Q 1. Will this cause damage if nothing is done
    Q 2. What else could be causing the cold engine bad morning coughing/sputtering/dying.
    Q 3. Could this problem cause issues with the battery.
    Q. 4. Went to store, and left the radio for my older child and battery was dead when I came out. After turning car off for a bit, it restarted on its own.

    Desperate for Real Fix this time.

  • Anonymous Mar 17, 2009

    I had the same problem but they found it to be the spark plugs.

  • bubba_roc796 Apr 17, 2009

    This was happening to my tribute as well but now when it's really cold like -1 dgree or below freezing she won't even start she cranks fine but won't catch but when it goes above 0 degrees she atarts but she bucking and lurching and booging out but she don't cut out and she warms up she runs like new you could put a glass of wine on the engine. I'm stumped. I replaced all the coils and plugs the sensor for the erg as well but still same problem.




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I took my car in to the shop and they found there was a lower intake manifold gasket leak. They replaced my upper and lower manifold gaskets and now it runs great! We have been going through a process of elimination and started with plugs and fuel filter, then battery, then cleaned the fuel injectors and finally the intake manifold gaskets. Replacing them seems to have done the trick.

Posted on Nov 23, 2008

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Yes, it was an air leak but was really the gaskets between the intake manifold which needs removed to replace plugs. Once that was sealed, the engine runs fine.

Posted on Nov 19, 2008

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It is the head gasket. Have that replaced and you will be fine. You have an air leak. I was told by the mechanic at mazda that the anti freeze eats away at the gaskets. CRAZY, but it works. I still have an issue with my 2001 Tribute revving while in park. Its always something.

Posted on Nov 18, 2008

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My 01 Tribute w/150k miles was doing the same thing... while cleaning the IAC valve I found a collapsed and rotted vacuum hose. It was more of an elbow really...$6.00 from Autozone and It runs like new again!

Posted on May 26, 2009

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