Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Why does my car sputter when restarting after driving for a while?

asked by on

The car appears to flatter and despite my stepping on the gas hesitates for a few seconds then idles normal

My car has 97500 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello. From what you describe it sounds like your vehicle may be stuttering and hesitating when you first start the vehicle. This can be caused by many things. A few common causes are issues with the ignition, engine management, or fuel systems. If the car has not had a tune up in a significant amount of time it may be possible that some of the components are worn or dirty and need to be changed. A common cause for difficult starting is a dirty fuel filter. As its name implies, the fuel filter filters out particles from the fuel, preventing them from entering the fuel system and harming or clogging up the components.

A dirty fuel, or even air filter, can cause all sorts of issues, including hard starting, if they get clogged and prevent fuel or air from reaching the engine properly. Issues with other fuel system components, or components of the ignition and engine management systems can also cause similar symptoms. I would recommend having a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic, to determine what the cause of the hard starting could be.

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!

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 hesitates to accelerate and won't upshift when i press down on the pedal hard.

If your check engine light has been on, then there will be some codes stored in the system. They might not tell you exactly what is wrong, but they can give you some good clues. There will probably at least...

Q: break and rotor replacement questions and opinons

If the rear brakes are still serviceable, meaning they are NOT worn below the minimum depth for the friction material AND are otherwise functioning normally, then you do not have to replace them at the same time that you replace...

Q: 1999 Nissan Pathfinder hesitation and sputter when I accelerate

Hello. If your radiator and water pump were recently installed, then those are likely not the components at fault, but it is still possible. If engine performance was greatly affected, it may be possible that there may be a blown...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
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...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...