My '97 Camry keeps dying when slowing to stop or turn


Asked by Jul 30, 2013 at 08:01 AM about the Toyota Camry

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

We have had it taken in several times. No one can figure this one out. We have had the fuel systems checked, the spark plugs, etc checked, cleaned the sludge from the throttle body, replaced the alternator, but it still dies. We replaced the iac valve last night, drove the car, but it died every few yards going down the street. Parked it, drove it again with a monitor on it, but then it seemed to drive more steadily, idle stayed steady at 850 rpms. After this trip, car sat a few minutes, then drove it again, and it died after a few miles, while I was slowing to turn. Was completely dead, didn't even click. Then it started up, I drove 2 more miles to my home, and it sat and idled fine in the driveway. The intermittent dying is what puzzles all these mechanics. Everything seemed to point to the iac valve, but now, we think a vacuum leak (?) Please, any input would be great. This is my daughter's car, and it is now becoming a hazard to drive.

17 Answers


Based on your scenario, the car drove correctly with the OBD II scanner connected, but once disconnected the problem was back ? If it was a vacuum leak it would happen all the time, not just at slow downs. If it ran correctly while the OBD II scanner was connected - What codes read on the scanner ? Sounds like an issue specifically based on the operation of the IAC (Idle air Controller) or IASC (Idle Air Speed Controller), so look for a broken or loose wire or incorrect ground out under the hood. Did you replace the IAC with a new unit or used unit (replacement could have the same issue). I'm interested to hear how you resolve this issue.

3 people found this helpful.

my battery cable was loose the second time I had your problem and the first was a leak in the distributor seal.

2 people found this helpful.

First, a big THANKS for answering. This has been a frustrating 6 months! I don't know what the scanner was called that he bluetoothed to the car in last night's test drive, and yes, it drove fine with it, but died once I left and drove on my own. From seeing the related questions, it looks like we are not alone with this problem. I will take the info you gave me to the mechanic tomorrow morning, and will let you know what they come up with! Thanks again.

3 people found this helpful.

Had a problem like this years ago. Car would go then die, and just got worse until it would only go a few feet. Problem? The big black air hose that goes from your air filter to the fuel injection. Had a crack in the bottom of the hose. Couldn't see it, but if you squeezed the hose, it would let in too much air and kill the car because the crack would open up when you squeezed the hose. Just wrapped the hose with electrical tape and drove the car home no problem. Hopefully, it's that easy. Have you replaced you mass air flow sensor? Not enough or too much air will kill your car also.

2 people found this helpful.

Hello again- took car in to a car parts store yesterday for a free diagnostic. This is about a 20 minute drive. Car died as I pulled in the parking lot. This is the pattern. The car will last about 15-20 minutes, then will shudder, the rpms fluctuate wildly, and it dies. Sometimes it will start up first try, other times it takes a few tries, or else it will go completely dead, not a click. The port was dead, so they couldn't get a reading, even though our friend had gotten a reading by bluetoothing the same port. Took car to mechanic, result is that the computer is reading the iac valve(new), and it is working fine. Vacuum checked out fine. No loose or cracked hoses, no ground wires loose or broken, all the above scenarios were checked and ruled out. Mechanic said everything seems to point to the EGR valve. Now, I wonder why the OBD worked when bluetoothed, but not when plugged in. Dumb question- guess because bt is wireless. This was a home-version scanner that our friend used, so it didn't read much. However, a different mechanic put the Camry on a scanner a few times before, in late winter/early spring when this all started. Everything checked out fine. Any ideas would be appreciated!

1 people found this helpful.

Is you car auto or standard? Is your speedometer working? Another problem I have had in the past with my Camry dying all the time was the fuse box under the hood. I discovered that if I grabbed it and wiggled it, the car would die. Loose connection under the box. Has anyone check it? If your car is an automatic and the speedometer or RPM's gauges are not working, that will cause your car to fail also. The cars computer runs off the info, so if one of them is not functioning, your car will not shift correctly and it will die. Just a thought...........

3 people found this helpful.

My first thought after the IAC would be as "Reelin68" has commented on in " Camry dying all the time was the fuse box under the hood. I discovered that if I grabbed it and wiggled it, the car would die. Loose connection under the box." I would go in that direction next and also make sure the OBD II port pins are not loose and that the port itself it attached solidly.

1 people found this helpful.

Unfortunately electrical "gremlins" are like flies, they come and go when they want always bothering us and are never completely gone away until dead (or found ).

3 people found this helpful.

Hello, everyone, and thank you all for the helpful replies. The EGR valve MAY have been the culprit. The mechanic showed it to me, it was almost completelyclogged, only opening left was the diameter of a pencil. He showed me how it was stuck open. He said that when I told him the car would run (highway) about 20 minutes and then die, that that was the clue he needed. After the first slow to a stop the EGR would stick open, and eventually cause the engine to die. I probably didn't explain it very well. The car has gone 4 days now without dying, so, so far, so good. However, I will have them check the OBD port and see that it gets tightened/repaired if needed. Thanks again, everyone. Hopefully, it will be awhile until I need help again, but when I do, I will be sure to log on to this site!

2 people found this helpful.

Have Them check the coil because the coil gets cracked and water gets in and Ofn turns the water moves and shorts The spark to the plugs mine was doing the same thing now it runs great.

My mom's 1999 Camry has been dying as she comes to a stop or has to slow down, especially after driving on the highway. So I took Reelin68's advice and checked the hose to the air filter and sure enough there is a huge crack in the hose. It's a little too big to simply put electrical tape on though. It needs replaced. Too early to tell if replacing this part will fix the problem or not but its a start. Thanks Reelin68!


Just remove the hose and have someone push it together as your wrap it with electrical tape like a hockey stick. It will stop the car from dying. I did it and drove the car home through another state. As a matter of fact, I don't even remember replacing the hose. I think I just left it taped up until we got rid of the car. Never had another issue with it..........


I know what you did the two hose on iac valve Are on backward trust me I know my shit Put them back now you have gas in you water Smell the gas in rad. Proof Water in gas you drove it that means you need to drain and refill both systems Say thank you Jon I've herd of this before not the 1 st.anyone want to bet just kidding just fix it,ake me happy Let me know how smart iam


Bad motor mount and when accel engine pulls one side lose harness Just when you turn .gota be


mine was a EGR Valve modulator, the filter in it was all plugged up with carbon soot. I pried the can off of it and blew it out with the air hose and that did the trick. and that was after being told to change MAF Sensor, Engine Coolant Sensor, Idle control Valve.

1 people found this helpful.

I have a 97 Camry and I had just drove the freeway for about 3 miles got off drove like 1 more stopped at the res light and was turning then car just stopped it kept going until it stopped like a few inches but my oil and battery light came on and now it want start any help ?


Viper_14375, a broken serpentine belt, timing belt, or fuel pump would cause your condition. You can see if your fuel pump is working by removing the gas cap, put your ear to the hole, and have someone turn the key to accessory. See if you can hear the pump hum. You can look under the hood for a broken serpentine belt. Timing belt is a little harder to check. You can remove a few bolts that hold the plastic cover on and pry it back just enough to shine a light so you can see inside.

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