Q: My car stalls arbitrarily and with no warning and is getting progressively harder to start.

asked by on

I bought a used 99 Dodge Intrepid a couple months ago. Soon after, it stalled in the hwy at 65 mph with no warning. The tach simply dropped to zero. Other than the cruise control light coming on, nothing was different. I pulled off with my flashers and it started right back up. The next night, it happened again- took a few minutes to start back up. It has since progressively become harder and harder to start. The other night, it wouldn't start for a few hours. So, the online "research" I've done overwhelmingly points to the camshaft and/or crankshaft position sensors as well as a possible cat converter problem. I got 3 trouble codes from the odometer 1. P1684: battery disconnected within the last 50 starts (which I had definitely not done) 2. P0420- Catalyst system efficiency below threshold (bank1) 3. P0432--Main catalyst system efficiency below threshold (bank2). I keep hearing that I should start with the Camshaft position sensor, as its the easier one to fix

My car has 217000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello and thank you for contacting YourMechanic. The code P1684 means that there was a battery disconnect from a sensor to the computer, or in other words, a sensor has lost communication with the computer. The code P0420 usually means that the catalyst converter is not functioning correctly. The code P0432 means that the catalyst converter could not functioning or there could be a problem with the fuel to air mixture.

Most of the time when these codes are present, there is a problem with the fuel mixture and causing the catalyst converter to work harder. The camshaft sensor will cause an engine to have a no start situation along with an incorrect fuel ratio. I recommend replacing the crankshaft sensor, replacing the camshaft sensor, and cleaning the MAF (Mass Air Flow) sensor. This should keep your vehicle in top shape and no issues. If the problem continues, have a professional mechanic, like one from YourMechanic diagnose the stalling issue and proceed with repairs.

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
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. My car stalls arbitrarily and with no warning and is getting progressively harder to start.

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: Q: Not starting

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 and has...

Q: Why dose my 2000 intriped batt light n car dies out

You need to have the charging system checked and the computer scanned for codes for the charging system. You could have a bad alternator or a bad computer that controls the charging rate of the alternator.

Q: Q: Check engine light just came on.

The P0320 trouble code could very well indicate a bad camshaft sensor. The pinpoint test should be performed before replacing the sensor. If you need help with diagnosis, contact a mechanic for a diagnosis of the Check Engine Light....

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...
How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...