Problems with Engine Idle on Ford Escort

Problem Description

(61 people reported this problem)

Ford Escort Vehicles With This Problem

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Viewing 1-20 of 21 comments
1998 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 112,000 mi,
I purchased my 1998 Ford Escort ZX2 from a private owner. His daughter had been using it to travel back and forth to college. The price was right, and so was the mileage at just 112,000 miles. Aside from the few to be expected highway dings, the vehicle was in good condition. One morning when I went out to start it I noticedthat the car was idling very low, below 1,000 RPMs. It actually stalled once or twice. I ruled out an electrical problem at first because the car cranked right back over. It just would not idle correctly. One by one I had ruled out the fuel injectors, and many of the other usual suspects. That is when I became aware of this problem that the Escort is prone to having with its CCRM (Constant Control Relay Module). I took the car in to my guy for service, and I am still waiting to get it back. While it's been in the shop I also became aware that the entire exhaust system is shot. From what my mechanic tells me th vehicle still has all original equipment. I guess the previous owner's idea of vehicle maintenance was to check the fluids once in a while and change the oil every 3,000 - 7,500 miles. I am pretty confident that this problem with the idle is due to a faulty CCRM. The more I have read up on the subject the more confident I have become. I should also let it be known that from the time I bought the car the interior cooling(A/C) fan has not worked on any setting. This just helped to bolster the theory about the CCRM. I figure that the defective CCRM has failed to provide power to either the fuel pump, the powertrain control module(PCM) or both. So, once he finishes replacing the entire exhaust system and repairs or replaces the CCRM I figure I'm looking at a bill somewhere around the $500-$700 range. Some would think it might not be worth it but I gotta say that the car has grown on me since I bought it. It runs great on the highway, has impressive pick-up for a 4-cylinder, and isgenerally good on gas. The suspension is nice and tight, just what one would expect from a sporty little car. All around it's just fun to drive. Hopefully this will resolve the problem and I can get it back on the road ASAP. I have always been a Honda guy at heart, but this ZX2 has impressed me. I did make the mistake of buying a VW Jetta once during my college years. It was like driving a go-cart without any of the fun. Anyway, I should be getting the vehicle back early this week and I'll be sure to post a follow up to let anyone with similar questions know how everything turned out, and more importantly, how much it cost to complete the repairs. Be safe out there on the roads.

1993 Ford Escort - 1.8L 4 Cylinder 100,000 mi,
Love this little car! However, when at a stop the idle gets very low and sometimes turns the car off. Usually it will start up right away. Once or twice I had to wait 10 minutes. When first starting it up (even if it was off for only 40 minutes) the engine is reeved very high and wants to go on it's own. Mechanic cannot find the problem and it won't stall out for him. I don't do freeways because of this problem. Other than that this little car is terrific with great pick up and go, good on mileage and fits into all parking spaces.

1999 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 93,000 mi,
Car is stalling and smells like engine is burning I'm hearing a sound like a fry rpm is low..what is this problem how can this be fix

1998 Ford Escort - 1.8L 4 Cylinder
my zx2 is starting it will idle for a few seconds then starts to idle rough. once i put it in reverse it dies. if i put it in drive it ill really rough and drives to pull itself it will bounce between 1500 and 2100. once i press the gas it will choke in and out. ive replaced the maf and iac sensors. neither did the job. we replaced the fuel pump and still did not notice a difference

Different people feel it's a vacuum leak. I agree it coughs, chokes, sputters under the 1000 rpms. Tricky thing is the accillerator is sticking and winds itself up to 4000 rpms.. It'll go 30 to 40 mph on its own. Something else is happening here in thinking. It needs a tune up. Just got an oilchsnge. Starts like a champ every time.

2002 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 105,000 mi,
bad idle with ac on

1998 Ford Escort - 1.9L 4 Cylinder 140,000 mi,
Ok I got a 1998 Ford Escort ZX2 from a friend of mine at work that just wanted it gone out of his yard for free. It sat for about a year but it started up and is now my son's daily driver to high school. I did the regular maintenance, oil change, with filter, check all the fluids, new tires, and brakes. However, in the last three weeks my son stated that he smelled something burning and opened the hood to find the wire from the alternator fried. I replaced the alternator and the wire and purchased a new battery as this one had a dead cell I was told. Just a couple of days ago my son complained about a rough idle and it quite on him. I went to his location where he left the car and it started up and I drove it back to the house. I then started it back up and it started to idle rough again as he had explained and it quit running. After some research I replaced the CCRM. Again it started but soon stopped running. I don't know what to do now. The car was free and I put about $1800 into it but I can't help him get another vehicle at this time. Any idea what it could be? (bad vacuum, sensor, ect...)
Thank you, Mark

1999 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 160,000 mi,
engine ran very rough idle stalled could not run without foot on gas, ground vacuum hose for the 90 degree boot underneath intake manifold wore out and collapsed. Replaced 90 degree angle vacuum boots solved engine running problem.

1999 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 3,594 mi,
Shift weird, really hard on gas, probably an exhaust leak somewhere as well. Seems like I'm putting 20 bucks in gas daily even if I only go 5miles down the road. What could cause such a fast leak in such a small amount of time and getting worst daily

1998 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 129,000 mi,
Turn on air and engine power greatly decreases, loud moan from under hood, loss of dash board lights.

1994 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 82,885 mi,
step on the brakes and idle runs bad

2001 Ford Escort - 1.9L 4 Cylinder 137,000 mi,
Upon starting up engine idle is heavy for about 30 seconds. after shifting into drive or/or reverse plus a little throttle it goes away. Seems to be affected by cold weather but not always

Num. 2 cylinder is misfiring, pull plugs off 3 & 2 it makes no difference

Have replaced coil pack & plugs & wires

1998 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC 199,800 mi,
Doesn't have take off , bogs down , air conditioner won't come on and problems with radio

1999 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder SOHC 187,000 mi,
The muffler is a rusted piece of garbage that makes a lot of noise (rattling mostly), you can see the exhaust smoke (but not like the white clouds that indicate blown head gasket), and is one bump away from falling off. I have replaced the brake switch twice in 2 months. The front brakes were changed in February. I am having a hard time slowing down. When I am stopped at a red light, if I barely release the brake pedal, the car starts pulling forward. When I pull into the driveway, the idle is high, and when I put into park, the rpms fly up to well over 3500, possibly 4500; I have no dashboard tacometer, it's just what it sounds like. The acceleration is slowly going. (my van that I bought Feb 27 started slipping in the trans last week; I don't need this with the car). I have no idea what the problem is, but I am guessing it has something to do with the exhaust system, and/or a valve or vac is malfunctioning. Thanks for your help!!

Last few years engine idles rough when stopped & worsens while running when AC is turned on. Tried several times to get fixed with other regular maintenance & no one can fix. Pick up has also become sluggish & worsens with AC use, which I avoid on highways (usually drive mainly in town under 40mph).

2000 Ford Escort - 2.0L 4 Cylinder DOHC
Air conditioner

1990 Ford Escort - 1.9L 4 Cylinder 175,000 mi,
this car is used primarily to commute to and from work consisting mostly of highway miles.
it is the zx2 model with a 5 speed manual transmission
The idle is a bit rough, and is a bit hard to start especially when cold, but appears to run fine otherwise with one exception.
After the car has been driving at highway speed for some time the idle will stay up between 1000 and 1500 rpms sometimes higher, any time I slow down to come to a stop or if I just depress the clutch pedal while moving, The idle slowly returns to normal once the vehicle has come to a complete stop. It would appear to be worse in colder months. I have suspected a vacuum leak but haven't been able to detect one.

2002 Ford Escort - 1.9L 4 Cylinder
Want to start.There spark,gas and still won't start.

2002 Ford Escort - 1.9L 4 Cylinder
car shates at idle