Why does my car die when I put it in gear?

I’ve been having some problems driving my car recently. Sometimes it dies when I put it in gear, and it’s making me concerned for my safety. I don’t want to cause a traffic jam either. Why does my car die when I put it in gear?

Payton Ternus · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
I’m very sorry to hear about your car troubles, it can be extremely frustrating when your
dies for seemingly no reason.
If you car dies when you put it in gear, this is also known as stalling. You might be able to fix some of the causes of stalling on your own, but more than likely you’ll need to see a mechanic. They’ll be able to pinpoint the root of the problem and fix it to prevent damage to your car. Here are the most common causes of stalling:
  • Clutch malfunction (manual transmission)
  • Coolant sensor is too hot
  • Dead car battery
  • Dirty air filter
  • Faulty charging system (alternator, fuel pump, EGR valve)
  • Ignition problems
  • Low fuel pressure
  • Poor fuel mixture
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