Can low oil cause a car to shut off?

So, I've been driving for a while with the engine oil light on. I know that's not a great idea, but I'm pretty far out in the country and just noticed a nasty oil leak. I was trying to make it home when my engine just shut off. Could that be caused by the oil getting low? Or is it something else?

Find out if you’re getting ripped off on your car insurance in less than two minutes.
No spam · No long forms · No fees
Find savings (100% Free)
rating white
3.5k Ratings
Answer provided by
Patrick Price
Answered on Jul 14, 2022
Yes—low oil can cause a car to shut off. Without examining the vehicle, it’s difficult to say for certain what caused your engine to shut off—but it certainly sounds like your oil leak is to blame.
Low oil levels can cause your engine to shut off in one of two ways. The first, and less problematic scenario, is that your car has a failsafe system which shuts the engine off because the heat/friction levels rose too high.
The other possibility is that your car does not have a failsafe system, and the heat/friction continued to rise until your engine seized. If that happened, you might need a new engine.
Now would be a good time to check your car insurance policy for towing and labor coverage. If you opted for this coverage, you can be towed to a repair facility free of charge.
Remember, if your coverage isn’t up to snuff—or if you’d just like to save some money on your premiums—you can always download and use the insurance broker app called Jerry!
Jerry is fast, free, easy, and can save you tons of money. Jerry customers save on average $800+ per year on car insurance!

Here to save on car and home insurance? Great, you do that. We’ll do everything else.

Sign up in under a minute.
No need to fill out forms or shop around. Sign up in 45 seconds to start saving. Jerry does the rest.
Jerry collects and analyzes your current coverage.
Say hello to Jerry, your new insurance agent. We’ll contact your insurance company, review your current plan, then find the coverage that fits your needs and saves you money.
Get the best options before your renewal.
Jerry does all the picky, busy work by comparing prices and coverage from more than 50+ insurance companies. We compare what we find to your current policy and offer you the three best options before every renewal.

Easiest way to compare and buy car insurance

No long forms
No spam or unwanted phone calls
Quotes from top insurance companies
Find insurance savings — it's 100% free