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Q: Recurring EGR valve problems on 2001 Mazda Tribute

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Car began idling rough today; hesitant ignition. EGR valve was sticking. Have replaced the EGR valve twice in the past year and a half. If I hook a vacuum line to it, I can get it unstuck but after a while it will do it again. No engine light indicating problems with sensors, but then again, the thermostat for temp has been lit for about 5 years even though there is no problem with overheating, mechanic told me at that time that he could run a test at the price of about $80 but that it was a common fault on these cars for the light to be on. Got a rebuilt transmission little over a year ago and that seems to be having some minor hesitation shifting from second to third gear at random times. Ideas? Solutions?
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