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Car Stalls While Driving but Starts Back up

All About Auto

Car Trouble Symptoms

While you are driving, the engine suddenly stalls.

The possible reason why car stall while driving but starts back up


1) Vapor lock occurrence.
2) Faulty fuel pressure regulator.


Car Troubleshooting

One cause of stalling is something called "vapor lock". Vapor lock can occur if the engine gets abnormally hot. So then, maybe vapor lock is causing your car to stall.

• If the stalling only occurs if the engine is abnormally hot then this suggests the vapor lock is probable cause.


As indicated, stalling only occurs if the engine is abnormally hot. This suggests that vapor lock is probably occurring. At this point, you're probably wondering what exactly is vapor lock? And... How does it cause stalling?

Well, a vapor lock is when gas boils before it gets into the engine. It is triggered by an extremely hot engine. When the gas boils, air bubbles form (in the gas), causing the air/fuel mixture to be too lean. By "too lean", it means that there's too much air and not enough gasoline. Consequently, the engine stalls since it can't stay running on such a weak (i.e. lean) air/fuel mixture.

What to do?
When vapor lock strikes, the only thing you can do is wait for the engine to cool down. Incidentally, we are curious as to why your car engine got so hot? Was there a good reason for this? If not, more than likely your car has a cooling system problem - please look into this.

• If the stalling DID NOT only occurs if the engine is abnormally hot this implies the stalling occurs at normal engine temperatures. Because of this, it is a possibility of a faulty fuel pressure regulator.


First off, an engine that stalls while driving is generally having a fuel problem... specifically, a lack of fuel. If your car is equipped with fuel injection. All fuel-injected engines have something called a "fuel pressure regulator". Its purpose is to maintain fuel pressure on each of the fuel injectors. Any problem with this device will result in a fuel-starved engine and, of course, a fuel-starved engine will stall.

All About Auto

What to do?
You will need to have a mechanic verify that the fuel pressure regulator is faulty. If this is indeed the case, have it replaced. In a situation like this, some mechanics may offer to replace several other items related to the above.

For now, just stick with the replacement of the fuel pressure regulator. This should correct the problem. You can always return at another time for the other items the mechanic suggested. We recommend AAA-approved garages since they tend to be very reputable.

What Would Cause Car to Shut Off While Driving
What would cause the car to shut off while driving is a vapor lock or faulty pressure regulator, sometimes the car shuts off while driving and won't start. Read more » What Would Cause Car to Shut Off While Driving


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