Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car shuts off at idle

asked by on

The check engine light came on about a week ago. A few days ago, the car would shut off when stopped at a stop light/stop sign. It restarts easily and continues to run as long as it is not stopped for too long or the gas pedal is pressed slightly.

My car has 125000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hi, thanks for writing in. This is a sign o...

Hi, thanks for writing in. This is a sign of a failing idle air control valve. This is a unit that regulates the air flow into the engine as it is mixed with fuel prior to being injected into the motor. When this is not working properly, this will cause an imbalanced load of air and fuel to be supplied to the motor resulting in a loss of power or stall as you have experienced. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your home or office to confirm a diagnosis on the issue and make or suggest the necessary repairs or replacements.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 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!

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: Grinding when I turn.

A number of things could cause this issue. Something near your brakes could be bent slightly causing the rotor to rub against it during hard turns. It is also possible that the wheel bearings have failed and the hard turn...

Q: Battery will randomly die overnight

You may have an intermittent problem with the power relay control box staying engaged after the key is turned off. This would require replacement of the relay box controller module. I'd recommend getting some assistance from a professional mechanic to...

Q: Car died while driving. What's the cause?

Hello. When the vehicle has been in an accident, there can always be a lot more damage than what appears on the surface. The amount of force the vehicle took when it hit the light most likely started the issues...

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 Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.
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.