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How to Clean the IACV on a Toyota RAV 4

Updated February 21, 2017

The RAV4 is a compact crossover sport-utility vehicle designed and manufactured by Toyota. The RAV4 is equipped with an idle air control valve (IACV). The component allows the proper amount of air to bypass the throttle plate. This process ensures the RAV4 maintains the proper engine speed at idle. To maintain the efficiency of your vehicle, the IAC valve should be cleaned as needed. A dirty valve can cause the vehicle to stall frequently, have a rough idle or a loud hum coming from the engine. The valve cleaning process requires minimal tools and will ensure your vehicle runs smoothly.

Open the bonnet of the RAV4. If the Toyota has recently been driven, allow a half hour for components to properly cool. Locate the IAC valve. The valve is found mounted on the throttle body. The valve unit looks like a 4-inch cylinder. Refer to the vehicle's repair manual for a diagram if needed.

Unplug the wire harness on the right side of the valve. Depress the harness tab and pull it straight out. Place the wire harness to the side to avoid damage during the cleaning process.

Loosen and remove the bolts that secure the valve to the throttle body. Place the bolts in a safe spot. Remove the valve from the mount.

Turn the valve upside down to access the two chambers. One chamber houses the valve spring and the other chamber houses the valve sensor. Spray electrical parts cleaner liberally into each opening.

Hold the valve over a rag or small bowl. Allow the cleaner to drain out the opposite side of the valve. Continue this process until the liquid draining out of the unit is clear.

Place the valve on a towel and allow tit to air dry completely. Reinstall the valve into the RAV4. Align the valve onto the mount. Replace the two bolts and secure them. Plug the wire harness back into the right side of the valve. Close the bonnet.

Things You'll Need

  • Socket wrench
  • Electrical parts cleaner
  • Towel
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About the Author

Johnathan Cronk is a freelance writer and began writing at the age of 18. Throughout his career he has specialized in sports, how-to and advice articles. He has also written sales pitches in the corporate setting since 2001. He studied business at Hudson Valley Community College before transferring to the State University of New York, Albany.