Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

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

asked by on

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?

A: It sounds like you may have a failing alter...

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.

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: My car accelerates very slowly - do I have turbo failure?

Hi there. From the description you have given, there could be a few reasons for the lack of turbocharger and lack of power. It could be the turbocharger has failed and requires replacement. With no unusual noises, it could be...

Q: Car lunged backward 10 feet in parking lot

A few different things can cause the transmission to lurch like this. The most common would be something obstructing the gas pedal, a transmission issue, brake fault, or a transmission range switch issue. The vehicle should not be driven until...

Q: Check Engine light code P0430

Your vehicle has groups of sensors that take readings and report back to the engine computer to make adjustments, or report an error; in this case, we're dealing with oxygen and/or air/fuel-ratio sensors. The code P0430 indicates a failure...

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...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
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.