The Mass Air Flow sensor (MAF) in a car responds to the amount of air flowing through the air intake. Most cars have this, others may have a Manifold Absolute Pressure Sensor (MAP) sensor. The MAF sensor has a thin wire that gets hot and measures the amount of air flowing into the engine. The computer then reads this accurate data and makes decisions based on this data. Over time, the sensors can accumulate dirt and oils which can reduce its accuracy. It may cause the engine to have a rougher idle, a slower throttle response, and torque converter slips.
Buying a MAF cleaner can be bought at your local auto store for about 5 dollars. This is simple 10 minute job that anyone can do. Depending on your car you may need a 10mm. socket, a Philips screwdriver or a Flathead screwdriver to remove the air intake. The air intake is removed from the air filter box. Or the MAF can be pulled out depending how it was built in the system. The cleaner is simply sprayed on the hot wires and let to dry. To finish the job, just assemble everything the way it was.