Cleaning "drive-by-wire" throttle body

Joined
Feb 5, 2016
Messages
516
Location
USA
According to this guy, moving the TB plate by hand can strip gears in the step motors:
Yet I've seen many tutorials where a toothbrush with cleaner is pushed through and it seems the standard procedure. What is your take on this?
 
Joined
Aug 30, 2004
Messages
27,176
Location
CA
What type of vehicle do you have? On some vehicles you will need to perform a relearn after cleaning. Otherwise your idle speed will not be correct. Honda’s and Nissan come to mind. On some throttle bodies if you use a toothbrush, you will remove too much from the throttle body and the throttle plate will not sit correctly after cleaning, and you won’t be able to perform the idle relearn. On some cars (Nissan) I have had to put moly paste on the throttle body plate area to get the throttle plate to sit correctly before a relearn could be performed. I have never seen gears get damaged on Asian makes while cleaning the throttle body.
 

DrRoughneck

Thread starter
Joined
Feb 5, 2016
Messages
516
Location
USA
Originally Posted By: The Critic
What type of vehicle do you have? On some vehicles you will need to perform a relearn after cleaning. Otherwise your idle speed will not be correct. Honda’s and Nissan come to mind. On some throttle bodies if you use a toothbrush, you will remove too much from the throttle body and the throttle plate will not sit correctly after cleaning, and you won’t be able to perform the idle relearn. On some cars (Nissan) I have had to put moly paste on the throttle body plate area to get the throttle plate to sit correctly before a relearn could be performed. I have never seen gears get damaged on Asian makes while cleaning the throttle body.
Engine is a Toyota 1GR-FE 4.0l V6. It's idling normal at around 650rpm post-cleanup.
 
Joined
Nov 20, 2006
Messages
28,414
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
I remove them from the engine and clean them with the electrics facing upward and only crack open the plate ever so slightly. Do not spray too much cleaner at once and avoid directly spraying it at the throttle shaft going into the electric side of things, the tps is in there as well as a light lube for the gears. I have never broken gears but have seen it as well as shorted tps units and other electrics. Do the job carefully using TB cleaner and you wont have any troubles, never spray the electrical connector or use carb cleaner, some units have a easily damaged coating that if damaged the IAC may not be able to maintain the desired idle rpm even fully closed.
 
Joined
Nov 19, 2011
Messages
2,224
Location
Lyndhurst NJ
Ive never had any issues with using something to prop the throttle plate open, screwdriver handle, small popsicle stick etc. After its installed, leave the key forward for 2-3 minutes and usually they will re adapt the throttle body.
 
Joined
Oct 7, 2012
Messages
3,458
Location
Staten Island, NY
On my Camry, since I haven't actually removed the whole TB assembly or upper manifold I just put a brick on the throttle, KOEO, and go to town cleaning Make damm sure that brick is in the right position, and sturdy If it slips, and the throttle body tries to close with your fingers/toothbrush/rag in there, it won't end well I'm told some of them can cut your fingers off, and after mine tried, upgraded to a big cinder block, and keep a second person floating around for help
 
Joined
Nov 23, 2016
Messages
1,644
Location
WI
On my LR3 I've just gently brushed around the throttle plate and gently opened just enough to get under it with a paper towel to get the line of dirt under it. Never have had an issue, I clean it annually at minimum. I don't disconnect the battery either.
 
Joined
Aug 30, 2004
Messages
27,176
Location
CA
Originally Posted By: DrRoughneck
Originally Posted By: The Critic
What type of vehicle do you have? On some vehicles you will need to perform a relearn after cleaning. Otherwise your idle speed will not be correct. Honda’s and Nissan come to mind. On some throttle bodies if you use a toothbrush, you will remove too much from the throttle body and the throttle plate will not sit correctly after cleaning, and you won’t be able to perform the idle relearn. On some cars (Nissan) I have had to put moly paste on the throttle body plate area to get the throttle plate to sit correctly before a relearn could be performed. I have never seen gears get damaged on Asian makes while cleaning the throttle body.
Engine is a Toyota 1GR-FE 4.0l V6. It's idling normal at around 650rpm post-cleanup.
The Toyota's are almost never problematic. As long as you disconnect the neg terminal and allow the engine to idle for at least 3 min past full warm up, the system should re-learn properly.
 
Joined
Feb 18, 2011
Messages
8,015
Location
Hudson, NH
After doing it a few times, its easier and you get better results just taking it off the intake. Probably every TB is a plug, 4 bolts and a hose. Thats all it takes. wd40 has become my favorite TB cleaner. If you put it back on and the vehicle is sluggish, well you know it was dirty and there was a lot of ECU learning to compensate. A battery disconnect will take care of that.
 
Joined
May 19, 2016
Messages
725
Location
Canada
In the GMs I worked on, with the key out, the throttle plate is closed under spring pressure as a fail safe. So a GM throttle plate can be moved by hand with no loading from the stepper motor at all.
 
Joined
Sep 23, 2006
Messages
1,778
Location
Wisconsin
I've only ever cleaned one electronic throttle body and that was on a 2005 ford explorer and the only reason i did so was because after the battery was changed it wouldn't run unless you pinned the throttle and even then it would run rough and then stall out. so after researching i found that sometimes when the system is reset to default but the throttle body is dirty etc it needs to be cleaned in order to get it back to factory like specs as well and after doing so it ran and idled just fine. so anyways i opened and closed the throttle by hand several times while cleaning it and had no ill effects
 
Top