Q: My car is idling weird and cuts off when I put it into any gear

asked by on November 03, 2016

I bought this car last year and it was running hot, I recently started to try and fix it after letting it sit for a year and now when I crank it it idles weird and then when I go to put it in gear it cuts off. What could be causing this ?

My car has 200000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello there. A few common problems will cause your 1996 Nissan Maxima to cut out when it is put in gear and have a rough idle. The idles issues and cutting off could be related or separate issues. Likely causes for the idle issues are a vacuum leak, MAF sensor, fuel pump, spark plugs, plug wires, ignition coil, or an exhaust leak.

When a vehicle cuts off when the transmission is placed in drive, the most likely fault is a locked up torque converter. When the torque converter locks at idle it causes the engine to stall and shut off. A few faults can cause the torque converter to lock up such as low fluid level, transmission leak, a failing torque converter, or a transmission mechanical issue.

If you would like to have this all scoped out, a qualified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, will be able to diagnose your stalling issue and perform any repairs required.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

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

Evap solenoid hoses routing

Hello. The EVAP solenoid is located in the top left of the engine near the throttle body. The hose for the EVAP solenoid should be in the same area. This hose is small and attached to other EVAP components. There...

Car idles rough, gas smell - 1988 Mercedes Benz 560SL

Check to see if the air filter housing has been sealed properly and that the mass air sensor has not been damaged by dirty air getting by the air filter assembly. If it has, then replace the mass air sensor...

Will the camshaft position sensor cause my car to keep cutting off while I'm driving it?

Hi there. The camshaft position sensor could cause an engine to stall out. Check the sensor and see if its plugged in. Make sure that the sensor is attached to the engine properly and make sure that the sensor harness...

Related articles

2007 Nissan Versa vs. 2007 Saturn Ion: Which One Should I Buy?
Compact cars as a class are generally meant to be commuter vehicles: with excellent gas mileage, an entry-level price point, and decent safety ratings for those who are on the road the majority of their time. These cars also make...
A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Nissan Altima Hybrid
The The Nissan Altima is already a favorite among mid-sized sedans, but it gained even more points with a lot of car buyers with the option to buy a 2012 Nissan Altima Hybrid. Though the four-cylinder Nissan Altima was already...
The Best Used Cars to Buy If You're a Farmer
If If you're a farmer, you know that what you need isn’t a used car – it’s a used pickup truck. How else are you going to haul around hay, implements, garden produce, fertilizer, and all the other things you...