Q: Car stopped, steering wheel stuck, check engine light orange

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The other day while I was searching for a parking space and driving around 25 mph, my car stopped moving out of the blue. I had the check engine light illuminated orange on the dash. I attempted to make a turn, but the steering wheel was stuck and the engine sort of unresponsive. Then I put the car in park and turned the engine off. I restared it and it ran fine again. I had a similar situation before but only with my engine, which was sluggish and the car had trouble accelerating. What is wrong with my car? How can I fix this?

It sounds like you may have a failing alternator. The alternator is responsible for running the electrical system of your vehicle while the engine is running as well as keeping the battery fully charged. If the alternator fails, this can cause the engine to die and therefore you will no longer have power steering.

When the engine dies the Check Engine Light will always come on. I would recommend having your battery and alternator tested at the earliest possible opportunity to determine whether or not replacement of the alternator will be necessary. It is also possible that your serpentine belt may have broken. Whichever cause it is, the same inspection should be able to determine the correct cause.

If you’d like to get this repaired, contact a certified mechanic who can diagnose your cars stalling issue and inspect your battery/alternator system to pinpoint the cause of this problem.

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