Question about 1999 Chevrolet Tracker

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1999 Chevrolet Tracker low idle problem when cold

Whenever I drive off in my Tracker without warming it up for a few minutes and come to a stop, it idles very rough to the point of stalling and sometimes it does. After a few seconds the idle speed stabilizes and the problem disappears until I park the vehicle for a long time again. No check engine light comes on. Apart from this problem the Tracker runs great. I replace the plugs, fuel filter etc. on a regular basis. Ever since I bought the vehicle 10 years ago, I have had this problem. The local Chevy dealer could not find anything wrong with it, since there are no trouble codes stored in the control module. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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  • SCGrant327 Feb 10, 2009

    Same problem here...1999 1.6L 2WD 5Spd.

    Replaced all sensors and EGR, etc. STILL has the problem

  • piranhalover Mar 16, 2009

    Thank you so much for your responses, however the vehicle which has a 2.0 liter engine and 5 speed manual transmission has been doing this since the day I bought it. The ECU has been replaced and reprogrammed twice by the local Chevy dealer while under warranty, but the low idle problem was never solved. After 10 years of ownership, I have learned to live with it. On the upside tough, the problem has not gotten any worse.

  • Jerry Koski
    Jerry Koski May 11, 2010

    I am not sure on the 99 model but you might check to see if this year has the EGR valve on it .. sometimes that is how they act .. just a thought. Jerry



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Here is the most common cause of surges and stalls and low idle rough idle, it is the idle speed control air-bypass valve and throttle valve (IAC for short), they get full of gunk over the miles and cause idle issues (stalls, low idle) like yours, Get a can of intake cleaner from any local parts store, not carb spray, intake cleaner, it is made by a company called CRC, remove the air intake hose to the engine, hold the idle high so the engine won't stall, then spray the can of cleaner into the intake while keeping the engine running, use at least 1/2 the can, shut down the engine and disconnect the battery for 5 minutes, then restart and complete a number of mixed driving cycles, town, freeway, stop and go etc., after a few days the problem will go away as the system will relearn to the clean intake.

Posted on Feb 12, 2009

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Have had the same issue you describe about rough idle and almost stall during warm-up.  Think it probably started 5 years ago or so, and first noticed it in bad weather, then any day when 30 degrees or less.  Reported it to dealer a few times, they never figured it out.  And problem has gotten worse over the years, but, for the most part the vehicle was always out on the highway quickly, we live next to an interstate, and so we just ignored it, as would only experience it during warmup and then only if doing 25 thru town and stopped at a stop sign during that time.  The vehicle still driven that way, but now rarely home because my daughter has it at the university she attends.  Yesterday when taking it to fill it with gas, temp about 45, ( heat wave in Wisconsin, finally ), I noticed the issue again, had sort of forgotten about it,  and was afraid the thing might actually stall.  So this morning I searched the internet, found your post, then checked TSB Technical Service Bulletin Titles, found a potential match and so spent 12.00 at to get access to the TSB's, for 99 tracker.  The GM number for this issue is TSB 00-06-04-013 and related number of 99-06-04-060.  They describe a procedure the service technician should execute to fix this, namely to reprogram the PCM Powertrain Control module and the ECU, Engine Control Unit, or, if needed replace and reprogram the ECU.  I don't know how to describe what that is all about, other than to say it is the computer which is interpreting the sensor signals from the engine and making the decisions about what fuel mixture/timing,etc is needed to keep the engine going at the speed you've requested on the accelerator pedal.  The one thing I noticed is that it seems to correct itself if you stop during the problem, turn the car off, wait about 60 seconds, and start out again.  It reminded me of a carburetor set up where an electric choke that was dependent on temperature for changing the fuel mixture would experience the same thing, after you stop, the heat from the stopped engine then opens the choke, and a restart after a minute and the car would be fine.  On the tracker I have not tried to simply stop and restart it immediately to see if even that would fix it.   Anyway, my daughter has taken the car back to school again, will be back at Easter break, and I am planning to have it taken to the GM dealer, now with the above TSB numbers in hand, to have them try and correct problem.

Posted on Mar 15, 2009


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