Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car shuts off in park and reverse

asked by on

Bought my car February this year with 96,000 miles on it. I figured it sat awhile so I did the normal maintenance on it. Drove it out a town a few times with no problem. I noticed it would shut off sometimes when I put it in park or reverse, no check engine light came on. Eventually my check engine light came on I ended up having to change my Idle air control valve, then the throttle position sensor. It's still shutting off in park or reverse, a little more frequently now, my check engine light isn't coming on so it's like a big mystery at this point

My car has 117000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi there. The stalling issue only in park and reverse seems unusual. This may be caused by an engine vacuum leak, resulting in unmetered air entering the engine. It may be, a dirty/worn throttle body and/or a faulty MAF (mass airflow) sensor incorrectly calculating the incoming air to the engine. Low fuel pressure, a faulty CKP (crankshaft position) sensor, or a faulty CMP (camshaft position) sensor are all possible causes for engine stalling. There are other possibilities and replacing components without proper diagnoses, can be expensive and time consuming without resolution. I recommend having your vehicle’s stalls in park and reverse be diagnosed and repaired by a certified technician, such as one from YourMechanic.

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!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car shuts off in park and 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: 1990 Subaru Legacy 2.2L code 35. Replaced purge solenoid valve. Idles fine. while driving any speed randomly shuts off. 1992 Subaru Legacy

Hello - the first thing to check is whether the code 35 has cleared, and whether any codes remain. As you mention, Code 35 is a failure with the evaporative emissions purge valve circuit. Since you have replaced the valve,...

Q: Sputtering and slow acceleration. At high speed it hesitates and seems as it's not receiving fuel.

Hi There, This may be a sign of a faulty fuel pump or fuel pressure regulator. As you know, when you turn the key to on, the fuel pump is activated and the fuel system is primed with fuel at...

Q: Transmission does not shift properly

This may be a sign of a faulty transmission control solenoid. As you know, automatic transmissions use pressurized hydraulic fluid to change gears. Every time a gear change is required, the car's computer activates a transmission solenoid, which directs transmission...

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...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...