Q: Car shut off while driving and will not run once started. What could this be?

asked by on

What is required to remedy this problem

My car has 88000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

If the issue you are describing relates to the vehicle’s ability to remain idling once the engine is started, you may have a dirty or faulty idle air control valve. The idle air control valve reads the air intake as it is mixed with fuel prior to being injected into the engine at low speeds and at idle. Since this valve is controlled by the vehicle’s computer, it will adjust idle speed based upon other measurements such as engine temperature, intake air temperature and electrical system load or voltage. This is also an important function when starting the motor as it allows the motor to run and idle on it’s own once the motor fires. When you accelerate, the engine RPM increases, and as you let off the gas, the RPM slowly returns to the normal idling speed with the help of the idle air control valve making the transition from a higher RPM back down to idle speed. When the engine RPM drops below the normal range of about ~800 RPM, this often times will cause the engine to stall indicating a dirty or faulty idle air control valve. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and replace your idle air control valve.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car shut off while driving and will not run once started. What could this be?

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: What causes the engine to run rough and the engine to die when the accelerator is pressed?

Hello. You have covered most of the common parts that fail with the exception of the idle air control valve/module. This is a unit that works similarly to the mass air flow sensor as it regulates the air intake into...

Q: Won't start - 2005 Toyota Corolla

Hello. A no start condition can be caused by a wide variety of things. If the battery, fuel pump, and starter have been replaced then they are likely not the source of the issue. Aside from a bad fuel pump,...

Q: Why are my Front right and back left brake calipers are sticking? 2007 Hyundai Tucson

Hi there - you may have [brake calipers that are sticking}(https://www.yourmechanic.com/article/top-10-brake-system-issues-every-car-owner-needs-to-know), and causing the brakes to drag. Or, you may have a residual brake pressure valve that is not releasing brake line pressure like it should. Modern brake system engage...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.