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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good afternoon all....im new to the world of Escorts and I recently picked up an 88.5 LX 3 speed from a little old man that has only 20,100 miles on it original. It runs fantastic, is practically all original (I just did the rotors in the front, still said FORD on them) has cold A/C and doesn't leak a drop of anything. The only problem I have is it seems to idle way too low. The tach is barely 2 or 3 hash marks above 0 at an idle and it has a shake to it that will go away with the slightest push of the gas. It has never stalled on me either. Is there any way to bump up the idle a couple hundred RPM? I have searched and found nothing on how to do this. Any help would be appreciated.
 

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Does the engine sound like it's at 200 or 300 rpm? To me, it shouldn't be able to stay running. Perhaps the tach is going to fail you soon. If need be, there is an adjustment screw on the driver's side of the cfi unit. I wouldn't recommend messing with that just yet.

Welcome to our little world of Escorts and nice pick up. I like low mileage Escorts. Bummer that I have but 1 left with less than 20k original.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
marshpoprock said:
Does the engine sound like it's at 200 or 300 rpm? To me, it shouldn't be able to stay running. Perhaps the tach is going to fail you soon. If need be, there is an adjustment screw on the driver's side of the cfi unit. I wouldn't recommend messing with that just yet.

Welcome to our little world of Escorts and nice pick up. I like low mileage Escorts. Bummer that I have but 1 left with less than 20k original.
To be honest it seems that the tach is off calibration at an idle, but seems to be fine when cruising. I dont see how it could be running at such low RPM without dying as you stated. I was just more concerned with the shaking at an idle, which goes away immediately with the slightest touch of the gas pedal, but its probably the 21 years of Phx, AZ heat playing havoc on the motor mounts which are probably a little dried up by now. I can live with it for now though. I just now noticed on the emissions sticker it says idle speed is not adjustable so I will probably just leave it alone and not mess with the screw and might just look into replacing the idle control motor and see if that helps.
 

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The idle speed is mildly adjustable, provided the ICM doesn't interfere. That rough idle comes from the ICM bouncing the throttle lightly, trying to smooth how the thing runs...it does a poor job. The engine will idle dead smooth off the idle set screw.

You can drive without the ICM being used, but you will stall the engine if you drop off the gas too quickly...it has something to do with how the computer is tuned and responds. It could also be a sticky ICM that isn't extending all the way, or something else. Pull error codes to see if something is up.
 
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