Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: When my car is idling at ref light it's shakes as if it's going to die. What is the problem?

asked by on

Every time my car is at a red light it begins to shake as if it's going to die. Why is my car acting as if it wants to die while idling?

My car has 109350 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Shaking or vibration may be caused by many different things such as faulty spark plugs, poor fuel pressure or misfires. Other things such as a faulty idle air control valve may cause the engine idle to drop below the normal idling RPM which may also cause the motor to shake or vibrate more than normal. This creates a loss of power that resonates throughout the motor additionally causing other problems with ignition and fuel timing. Anytime a misfire is caused, this causes an imbalance in the motor which will cause the motor to shake or vibrate. I would suggest having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your vehicle using a scanning tool which will more accurately indicate what specifically may be causing this.

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 my car is idling at ref light it's shakes as if it's going to die. What is the problem?

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: rattle from passenger rear tire

Hey there: A rattling issue coming from a rear tire is either caused by loose wheel weights, a tire out of balance, bent wheel or perhaps damage to wheel bearings or loose brake components. Due to the multiple potential issues,...

Q: brake pedal goes to floor

When a wheel is not rolling free it can be due to a seized caliper, binding brake pads, or fluid pressure that is not being released from the brake caliper. Since you have replaced the first two parts, I think...

Q: High pitch squeal right side

There are a number of things that could make an engine noisy when starting up. Depending on the specific type of sound you are referring to, this will determine how to properly diagnose. If there is a bit of a...

Related articles

How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
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...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.