Q: When idled, why does my car completely shut off?

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As I start my car, all is fine. But as I drive then stop at a light or whatever, the car turns off by itself and sometimes it is difficult to turn back on. Could it be a sensor? I have no idea.

My car has 158000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Stalling can be caused by any number of components or issues. A vacuum leak due to a broken air intake hose or intake manifold gasket can be a cause. If the engine is drawing in too much air, this would effect the air/fuel mixture. This can cause stalling, lack or power, and poor fuel economy. Fuel system issues such as low fuel pressure, dirty or faulty fuel injectors, or a faulty fuel pressure regulator can cause these symptoms as well. Also, any number of faulty sensors can be at fault. If any of the 1-2 dozen sensors that the engine control unit relies on for input goes bad, that too can cause stalling, lack of power, and poor economy. The best approach is to have a certified technician look into the stalling to find the exact cause. Replacing parts randomly without knowing the exact cause can get quite expensive.

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