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^^^^^ Agree 100%
 

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I came on here to report the exact same problem! The last 3 or 4 times I've started my 1996 Mercury Sable LS with the 3.0L Duratec V-6, it started off idling real high - around 2500 rpms. And even after I drive it places, it doesn't seem to go back down to normal idle. I've read over the thread, but not sure where I should look first to find the problem. I thought maybe it was some sort of vacuum leak. Can anyone suggest what I should try and in what order?
 

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Get codes. If you have a 171 and/or 174, 99% chance you have a vacuum leak. Monitoring LTFTs at idle and under load will verify this. This has been discussed hundreds if not thousands of times on this board.
 

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I did the self-diagnostic thing and got the code "888." I don't know what that refers to. And please, people, try to leave the snide comments out. Obviously, if I had seen this tip hundreds or thousands of times, I wouldn't be here asking about it. I have a hard time getting the search function here to find what I need, especially when I don't know what the problem is or what terms to search for. I'm not a mechanic. I'm a photographer.
 

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Discussion Starter #25 (Edited)
I did the self-diagnostic thing and got the code "888." I don't know what that refers to. And please, people, try to leave the snide comments out. Obviously, if I had seen this tip hundreds or thousands of times, I wouldn't be here asking about it. I have a hard time getting the search function here to find what I need, especially when I don't know what the problem is or what terms to search for. I'm not a mechanic. I'm a photographer.
Haha, I feel you there. As the OP, I do think this forum is wonderful, and everyone here is immensely helpful! However, I know this has been discussed to death here... and I posted nonetheless because I had someone inspect for leaks and they said there weren't any. That left me feeling lost.

Since this, I still haven't had an opportunity to spray the car myself (got some carb cleaner and an extinguisher ready to go, though!), but I did have someone work on the car for unrelated reasons (replaced the rear shocks).

They checked various hoses, said they didn't think it was a vacuum leak, and gave the intake a seafoam treatment.

Since then, the car is shifting/accelerating more smoothly, but it still has high RPM at start. this makes my layman brain think "something is dirty/clogged somewhere." So I still fully intend to do everything advised here (check EGR, MAF, etc.) within the next few weeks.

EDIT: Oh, and as for "888," besides what people will advise here, just throw P0 onto the beginning to make it a complete code and throw it into Google. Doing this tells you the basics (TCM Power Relay Sense Circuit) and then you can drill down with more focused searches (e.g., "P0888 Ford Taurus" etc.).
 

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There is no PCM "888" or P0888 code. 888 is the system pass code for the EATC system self test.
 

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THE ECM thinks the engine is ice cold so it makes the engine idle high temp sender sending wrong reading to ECM even if the temp gauge on dash is working.
YES seen it first hand 3 or 4 times and no one ever heard of it most times no code
 

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THE ECM thinks the engine is ice cold so it makes the engine idle high temp sender sending wrong reading to ECM even if the temp gauge on dash is working.
YES seen it first hand 3 or 4 times and no one ever heard of it most times no code
Personally I never throw parts at a problem. If I suspected the ECT, I would use a scan tool to see what coolant temp the ECT was reporting to the PCM before replacing the ECT.
 

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Even a P0888 PCM code would not apply to our cars. Any P code starting with 08, 18, 07, 17 is a transmission related code, which has nothing to do with your issue. Also, our cars do not have a separate TCM or TCM relay. the PCM handles tranny control in all Fords with electrically controlled transmissions.
 
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