Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car shuts off unexpectedly

asked by on

When I start the car, it would shut off at random. This occurs completely unexpectedly both when I'm driving or when I'm stopped in traffic. Then, I have to put it in park so as to restart it. What might be the problem?

A: Engine stalling while driving is typically ...

Engine stalling while driving is typically caused by a problem with the ignition system. Plus, the fact that you can restart the vehicle after cycling the ignition leads me to believe the problem is electrical. The first thing I would check is the crankshaft position sensor. The powertrain control module (PCM) uses the crankshaft position sensor signal as a reference for controlling the ignition system. My guess is that the Check Engine Light is on. Retrieving the stored diagnostic trouble codes will help pinpoint the problem. I suggest you contact a professional for firsthand diagnosis of your stalling issue. The team at YourMechanic is an excellent option since we make house calls.

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・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: A/C stuck on floor and defrost will not change on any settings

Hello. You need to see if the mode door actuator is working. This actuator is on the evaporator case on the driver's side above the gas pedal. You have to remove the knee bolster for access. If this is the...

Q: No voice commands, requires manual use

Hi there, thank you for asking about your 2013 Lexus RX450h. If your Lexus dealer is unable to help you, contact Fujitsu Ten/Eclipse. They make the navigation system hardware for Toyota/Lexus. They may already offer an upgrade to get voice...

Q: Car cannot start, engine unresponsive

The hard start issue on your 1994 Toyota Previa could be a variety of possibilities from something as simple as a dirty battery cable to a faulty starter, starter relay switch, or many other possibilities. Your vehicle requires a clean...

Related articles

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...
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.