5.0 Coyote intake manifold stock
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F150 Intake Manifold Runner Control Guide

Chandler Stark

Meet Chandler

Chandler is an automotive expert with over a decade of experience working on and modifying cars. A couple of his favorites were his heavily modded 2016 Subaru WRX and his current 2020 VW Golf GTI. He’s also a big fan of American Muscle and automotive history. Chandler’s passion and knowledge of the automotive industry help him deliver high-quality, insightful content to TuningPro readers.

Since its release in 2011, Ford’s 5.0 Coyote V8 engine has perennially been one of the top small block V8s on the market. It produces fantastic performance with great reliability, and it sounds and looks incredible. However, the 5.0 Coyote is far from bulletproof, and one of the more common issues is with the Mustang GT and F150 Intake Manifold Runner Control (IMRC). The F150 intake manifold runner control can throw the P2004/5/6/7 DTC codes with unfortunate regularity. Not only are these problems generally pretty expensive, but they are very serious.

This guide will cover everything you need to know about the Mustang GT IMRC and F150 IMRC issues. We’ll explain what the IMRC system is, and what the DTCs mean, then we’ll go over how to solve the problem.

5.0 Coyote intake manifold stock
Credit: Ford Performance: Stock 5.0 Coyote Manifold (Gen II)

What Are 5.0 F150 Intake Manifold Runner Controls?

The problem with the 5.0 F150 intake manifold runner control relates to the improvements Ford made between the Gen 1 and Gen 2 Coyotes engines. When Ford redesigned the intake manifolds for the Gen 2s, they added charge motion control valves (CMCV). CMCVs, also known as IMRC in other applications, were implemented to help maintain fuel economy while boosting low-end torque.

Without getting too technical, CMCVs act to regulate the amount of air entering the engine from the manifold. They are valves that sit in the manifold’s runners, which open and close to allow and restrict airflow. At wide open throttle, the valves are fully open to allow the most possible airflow. They are more closed at partial throttle to reduce air volume while increasing airflow velocity.

There is one valve for each individual runner, and the four runners on each cylinder bank are run in unison. They are opened and closed via control rods that are themselves controlled by actuators. The actuators are told by the PCM how much to open or close the valves based on engine need.

It gets a little confusing with the F150 CMCV and IMRCs, but they’re the exact same thing. CMCV is just Ford’s proprietary name for their specifically designed IMRC system. DTC codes use generic terms, so that’s why the DTCs all say IMRC, but they refer to Ford’s CMCV system. This guide will use the terms interchangeably.

Intake Manifold Runner Control Issues

The main issues with the F150 intake manifold runner control are the valves either getting stuck open or stuck closed. If the CMCV is stuck open, that means the PCM can’t regulate the amount of air entering the engine. This is less of an issue than if the CMCV is stuck closed, because that means basically no air can enter the engine. If the PCM detects that a CMCV is open and can’t be closed, or vice versa, a DTC pops up. Typically, only one side will have an issue, but there have been some cases with both runner banks having stuck valves.

As you can imagine, having your IMRCs either stuck open or closed is detrimental to engine performance. If they’re stuck open, you’ll see decreased performance because the PCM won’t be able to get ideal air-to-fuel mixtures. If they’re stuck closed, the engine will be effectively choked of air. You’ll notice your vehicle struggling to maintain idle and accelerate, and it’ll start to sputter and feel like it wants to quit. In extreme cases, the vehicle won’t start if several valves are stuck shut.

Associated Intake Manifold Runner Control DTCs

  • P2004: IMRC Stuck Open Bank 1
  • P2005: IMRC Stuck Open Bank 2
  • P2006: IMRC Stuck Closed Bank 1
  • P2007: IMRC Stuck Closed Bank 2
  • P2008: IMRC Circuit Open Bank 1
  • P2009: IMRC Circuit Low Bank 1
  • P2010: IMRC Circuit High Bank 1
  • P2011: IMRC Circuit Open Bank 2
  • P2012: IMRC Circuit Low Bank 2
  • P2013: IMRC Circuit High Bank 2
  • P2014: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Bank 1
  • P2015: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Range/Perf Bank 1
  • P2016: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Low Bank 1
  • P2017: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit High Bank 1
  • P2018: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Interm Bank 1
  • P2019: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Bank 2
  • P2020: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Range/Perf Bank 2
  • P2021: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Low Bank 2
  • P2022: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit High Bank 2
  • P2023: Intake Manifold Runner Position Sensor/Switch Circuit Interm Bank 2

The IMRC/CMCV system has one valve for each runner, and each cylinder bank has its own DTC codes. Cylinder bank 1 corresponds with the left engine bank, looking at the engine from the front. Cylinder bank 2 is the right cylinder bank.

P2004/5/6/7 apply if the PCM detects one of the bank’s valves is stuck open or closed. These are by far the most common Mustang GT and F150 intake manifold runner control DTCs. Chances are, if you have an IMRC/CMCV DTC, it’s a P2004/5/6/7.

The remaining P2008-P2023 are related to the wiring harnesses and circuits of the IMRC/CMCV system. If the PCM gets conflicting voltage measurements it will throw these codes. Many of these codes are caused by dirty valves, broken control rods, and failed CMCV actuators.

IMRC Failure Symptoms

  • Poor fuel economy compared to normal
  • Poor low-end performance and throttle response
  • Poor or rough idle, or failure to maintain idle
  • Inability for engine to start
  • Check Engine Light illuminated on dashboard
  • P2004-P2023 DTC Codes

Since the CMCV is responsible for how much air the engine can intake, F150 and Mustang GT CMCV failure presents a lot of issues. If the valve is stuck open, it’s not as big of a deal – though your engine will struggle to compensate.

It’s when the valve is stuck closed that more serious issues arise. If the valve is closed your engine will struggle to get air, giving it a rough idle and poor performance. Your engine might not even start if several of the runners are stuck closed on both banks.

Ford 5.0 F150 Intake Manifold Runner Control Failure Causes

  • IMRC/CMCV solenoid/actuator failure
  • IMRC/CMCV wiring harness failure
  • IMRC/CMCV loose or broken valve plate screws
  • IMRC/CMCV broken valve plates
  • IMRC/CMCV broken control rods
  • IMRC/CMCV faulty sensor/switch

The most common causes for F150 IMRC/CMCV DTCs are solenoid/actuator failure, wiring harness failure, loose screws, broken valves, and broken control rods. More than likely, it is broken control rods. The control rods open/close the valves, and they are built into the runners – meaning they can’t be individually replaced. Unless the issue is related to loose screws, you will likely have to replace the entire IMRC system.

IMRC DTC Severity

Severity Level: High – Fix Immediately

As you can imagine, having your IMRCs either stuck open or closed is detrimental to engine performance. As such, it’s imperative that you get the DTC taken care of as quickly as possible. If not, your car or truck might leave you stranded.

How to Diagnose F150 5.0 Coyote IMRC Failure

Step 1: Confirm the correct DTC through an OBD II code reading device. IMRC/CMCV codes fall between P2004-P2023 and are listed above.

Step 2: Complete visual inspection of IMRC/CMCV wiring harness. Repair or replace if necessary.

Step 3: Complete visual inspection of IMRC/CMCV actuator/solenoid for damage.

Step 4: Use scan tool to check solenoid/actuator function. If no response, the actuator is faulty.

Step 5: Check control rod linkage between manifold and actuator/solenoid, this will require removal of manifold.

Step 6: Inspect valves for corrosion and carbon buildup.

After these steps have been performed, you should be able to narrow the problem down to the wiring harness, actuator, sensor/switch, or control rods. As we stated, by far the most common cause of IMRC/CMCV DTCs is broken control rods. But, faulty actuators are not entirely uncommon problems either.

If the problem is with the wiring harness, then it is a relatively straightforward fix. However, actuator or control rod problems will likely mean a new manifold, as they can’t be removed and replaced.

Common Mistakes When Diagnosing 5.0 F150 IMRC Failure

  • Not confirming a IMRC/CMCV DTC
  • Failure to inspect wiring harness
  • Failure to inspect or test actuator
  • Failure to inspect control rod linkage

The most common mistakes are not properly following all of the steps to diagnosing the problem outlined in the previous section. Make sure you follow each step to confirm the right DTC is present, and that all of the parts are visually inspected. You don’t want to buy an entirely new manifold if just a wiring harness needs replacement.

How to Fix F150 5.0 Intake Manifold Runner Control Failure

The fix for the F150 intake manifold runner control problems is relatively simple. After going through the above diagnosis checklist, you should be able to narrow down which component is faulty. Unfortunately, most of the components of the IMRC/CMCV are all part of the same piece. This means that most of the time the entire intake manifold has to be replaced for IMRC problems.

One solution is to find the same generation intake manifold for a direct swap. You can also upgrade to a newer generation of Coyote intake manifolds if your car has a Gen 2 engine. Another option is to upgrade to an aftermarket intake manifold. Check out our 5.0 Coyote intake manifold guide if you’re interested in going that route.

IMRC Failure Diagnosis and Repair Costs

Unfortunately, if you need to replace the intake manifold due to IMRC problems, it’s pretty expensive. With labor and parts, you can expect it to exceed $1,000 after everything is said and done. Generally, Ford has done a good job of repairing these issues under their powertrain warranty. But if it happens outside of warranty, get prepared to pay.

Many people decide to upgrade to an aftermarket intake manifold due to the large repair costs. Keep in mind however, that any intake manifold swapping will require tuning, which is a pretty big expense. You will see performance gains from a new manifold, but it’ll be much more expensive than just a direct replacement.

Intake Manifold Runner Control Failure Is Annoying But Not The End Of The World

While Mustang GT and F150 intake manifold runner control issues aren’t incredibly common, they can pop up occasionally. Usually, you’ll feel the difference in engine performance before you get the DTC, but sometimes you might not notice it. The IMRC/CMCV DTCs are fairly serious, so if one does pop make sure you get it taken care of immediately.

Let us know in the comments below about your experiences with F150 or Mustang GT IMRC/CMCV issues.

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7 Comments

  1. My grandson’s first pickup is a F-150 2017 with the 5 liter coyote engine”………..

    He now has a diagnosed “Stuck actuator Valve” and needs a whole new manifold.

    After reading threads about this specific issue it seems to me FORD should be stepping up with either a warranty recall or some sort of compensation to replace these manifolds.

    Problem now is the ford dealers in the Orlando Florida area cannot find a manifold to fix his truck —- I need some help!!!!!!

    does anyone have a manifold or know where I can get a replacement????

    He’s has been quoated a replacement anywhere from $500.00 to $1,200.00

    Where can I get a manifold for him and what is the real price I should be paying

    1. Hey Casey,
      Unfortunately this is not an isolated issue for yourself, as a lot of people seem to be having trouble tracking down OEM replacement 5.0 manifolds. That also means that prices have spiked for OEM manifolds. They used to be able to be had for around $200, but with the high demand people seem to be hoarding them.
      As tedious as it sounds, the best way to find one is just by perusing F-150 and 5.0 Coyote forums in the For Sale section to find one that pops up, usually those will also have the most competitive pricing. Keep in mind, the car and truck manifolds are different and will change how the engine performs if swapped out.
      Alternatively, you can also buy an aftermarket intake manifold and get an accompanying ECU tune. Linked below is our F-150 5.0 Coyote tuning guide if you decide to go that route. Hope this helps.

      All the best,
      Chandler

  2. Is there a model year where this problem starts to go away, or is it inherent in the 5.0 liter period regardless of year? My daughter’s F150 is in the shop, a part with no availability for parts (Back Ordered)and she’s thinking of walking away and trading up to a similar newer truck as a used vehicle.

    1. Robert,
      The issue is mainly related to the Gen 2 5.0 that Ford used from 2015-2018. Getting a 2019+ would be a great option to eliminate the issue (and get some better performance), too.
      All the best,
      Chandler

  3. My 2017 F-150 has the same problem and the dealer tells me that there are 3000 of these intake manifolds on backorder nationwide, with no clue on lead time. They keep building new trucks that use them but Ford apparently stopped caring about its loyal, repeat customers with warranty issues. In the meantime, gas mileage and power are in the toilet due to a crappy design.

  4. Hi! I have a 2018 f150 with the 5.0. IT’s having some of the issues described here (poor low end power, occasional pop/backfire). But it isn’t throwing any codes at all. I did the basics of plugs and coils, injectors but the problem persists. Particularly at low speeds low load. This seems like the intake issue but I’m not sure. Any additional information or testing that you could suggest?

  5. What are the chances that my P2007 code is from carbon build up? It just coded recently and I have no associated noticeable performance issues (i.e loss of power, increased mileage, rough idle). However I drive like an old man so might not notice performance loss. I am tempted to have mechanic pull my manifold and clean it up really good and replace (run a fuel and air cleaning service on it while at it).

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