Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: When I turn on the car and place it in gear it car turns off, why is this happening.

asked by on

The car was parked for a while before I purchased it. When it was purchased it was driven from point A to point B without any issues until the next day when we started the car wasn't idling normally it kept going up and down. When we put the car in gear it shuts down. The only way I got it in gear without it shutting down is by letting it run for about 10 minutes without interference.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Smaller engines tend to be picky about the simple components. Stalling issues are generally due to a sensor, or lack of fuel and air. To start you want to do a general assessment of the vehicle. The air filter, fuel pump, fuel filter, and spark plugs need to be in good condition. When was the last time you had a tune up? The fuel system in particular will cause these issues. You can test your fuel pressure to make sure you are getting an ample supply. Then assuming the vehicle is in good running condition you may want to look into the idle control valve. Engines that are cold will need a higher idle, and if they do not receive this, they will stall. You may also benefit from having the vehicle scanned for diagnostic troubleshooting codes. If the issue is coming from an electrical issue, you may find it here.

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!
  • Home
  • Questions
  • When I turn on the car and place it in gear it car turns off, why is this happening.

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: My car will not stay started after installing a new alternator

Hello. You will want to check that the alternator installed has the right amperage output for your vehicle. Some vehicles take two or maybe three different types of alternators and the one that was installed may not have sufficient power...

Q: Check Engine light; upstream O2 sensor

Hi there. If you have a code for the upstream O2 sensor then that is the most likely problem. Knowing the code would help me to be able to tell for sure what is going on. If you replaced the...

Q: 2004 chevy silverado 2500hd dies when put in gear after the engine warms up

Hello, thank you for writing in. Unfortunately, there are a large number of components that can contribute to this issue. The first thing you will want to do, regardless of a check engine light being present or not, is to...

Related articles

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...
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...
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.