Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: I was driving and my car started to slow down, and my gas pedal wouldn't work, and all the signs came on and the car light was flickering

asked by on

I would like to know what's wrong with my car because now it's completely dead. When I try to lock the door it doesn't lock. I've tried to jump the car but it doesn't last long. The check engine light was on but was told my gas tank needed to be checked so that couldn't be the reason. The battery and brake lights came on but those were changed and done. Then the ABS light came on so not I'm sure what that means. When I drive the car it sounds like an airplane is taking off. So I jumped the car and it started but once I put the shift to drive in 5 seconds, the car dies.

My car has 174035 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, thanks for writing in. It sounds like your battery has crashed. When the system voltage drops below a certain point, the electronics go haywire. The alternator is supposed to maintain the battery voltage at around 14 volts, and I’m guessing that your’s is not working. When the alternator stops charging, the car can continue to run on stored energy in the battery for a few hours, until the voltage falls below about 10 volts, then all those crazy things start happening.

It’s hard to say without hearing it, but the "airplane" noise may be coming from your failed alternator. I don’t recommend running out and buying a new alternator right away, the battery needs to be fully charged or replaced so that you can have a proper tests performed.

Charging or installing a battery, or even jumping one off, is a risky business on a modern car. Connecting the cables incorrectly for even a moment can do a lot of expensive damage to the various modules in your car.

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
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. I was driving and my car started to slow down, and my gas pedal wouldn't work, and all the signs came on and the car light was flickering

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: Car keeps dying & wont turn on once turned off. Alternator was tested & it's fine.What else could it be? A new battery was also bought.

Hi, it sound like you have a ground to chassis issue. What this does is complete a circuit and will slowly drain your battery. A couple of quick and easy checks is look at your black negative battery cable and...

Q: Car not starting because of alarm system

There is a few issues related to the alarm system that could be causing the problem you are having and more information would be needed to diagnose the problem for you. The remote may be having an issue with the...

Q: Car won't start - only clicks when key is turned.

Hi There, What you are describing sounds like a faulty starter solenoid. If you hear a clicking sound when turning the key, it is likely that your starter solenoid may be faulty. The starter solenoid is located on the starter...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
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...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...