Q: Q: Car cannot shift to reverse

asked by on

The other day I was driving and then stopped and parked the car for a while. When I was about to continue driving, I lost reverse out of the blue. This is the first time something like this happened. As the fluid was a bit low, I had it replaced along with the filter. However, I still couldn't shift to reverse. What should I do?

It is possible this is caused by some dirt, grit, or other bit of trash in the valve body of the transmission. The valve body takes the mechanical selection of "Reverse" from the gear selector, and turns that into the hydraulic connections that activate the correct clutches and gear sets that do the work. Another possibility is if you aren’t getting a shift into 3rd gear (while in the "Drive" position), this could be a failure of the direct clutch in the transmission. This clutch is shared between Reverse and 3rd gear. A professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, can help diagnose this shifting problem and let you know what needs repair.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1,000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Q: Car cannot shift to reverse

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Oil leak behind oil filter

There should be an oil pressure sensor located near the filter housing. Check to see if there is a leak at the sensor. At idle, there should be about 15PSI of pressure and about 50-60PSI at around 3,000 RPM's. There...

Q: How Does an Oil Filter Function?

An oil filter is a long, rectangular paper element that is folded into numerous pleats. The two ends of the pleated element are sealed together and the filter placed around a perforated metal tube inside a filter can. The perforated...

Q: Reverse lights not coming on.

The reverse light switch is powered by the meter fuse and when you put it in reverse the power is sent to the rear reverse lights. The rear light socket would have to be tested to see if power is...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...