When I put it in reverse it is stalling

When I put my car in reverse it stalls
My car has an automatic transmission.
Experienced mechanics share their insights in answering this question :
If you car only stalls when you shift into reverse and not when you shift to any forward drive gear, then you may have an internal leak in the valve body and when you shift into reverse, the transmission is shifting to drive and reverse at the same time. You will need a transmission pressure test done by an experienced transmission mechanic to see if the valve body gasket or a valve is leaking.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced mechanics :

If your automatic car stalls when put in reverse, the key suspects should be low transmission fluid levels, a faulty torque converter, failing clutch park, or a bad solenoid. According to this Repair Pal post, stalling when shifting is mostly caused by a clogged transmission cooler line or the fluid cooler.
The engine may stall when shifting the automatic transmission into reverse. This is commonly caused by a clogged transmission cooler line or fluid cooler. If this occurs transmission fluid flow will need to be restored by replacing the cooler and/or lines as necessary.
The top reasons why your Subaru may stall include a dirty air filter, a bad fuel pump, a faulty ignition system, clogged fuel injectors, a dirty throttle body, and a faulty mass airflow sensor. To prevent stalling, it`s important to have your car regularly maintained and inspected by a professional.
There are a few reasons why your Subaru transmission won`t go into reverse the most common reasons are: Shift lock solenoid – the shift lock mechanism stops the driver from being able to take the Subaru out of park when the engine is off.
When you`re reversing, you`re probably moving very slowly to make sure everything`s safe. But if you`re not giving the engine enough revs, it`s going to stall. It feels a bit scary, but you do often need to accelerate gently as you`re moving back – just a little bit to keep the car from stalling.
In many cases, delayed shifting of any kind is caused by issues with the transmission`s valve body. Shift solenoid or computer malfunctions can also result in these types of hitches and may require transmission service for correction.
Just as you learned what happens with low transmission fluid, dirty fluid, or a clogged filter can cause similar transmission troubles and create a car that won`t back up in reverse. Improper lubrication from old fluid or debris in contaminated fluid will affect how the transmission shifts into reverse or other gear.
Some of the most common sensors that lead to engine stalling include the mass airflow sensor (MAF), engine coolant temperature sensor (ECT) and manifold absolute pressure sesnsor (MAP). The idle air control valve (IAC) and exhaust gas recirculation valve (EGR) are also well known for causing engine stalling.
There are three major causes for a stalled engine: A lack of fuel, a lack of air flow and improper ignition. Running out of fuel is one of the most common causes of engine stalling, but dirty fuel injectors or a plugged fuel filter can also be the culprit.
Rough Shifts/Grinding Gears

When driving your manual vehicle, if it is physically tough to change gears or when shifting a grinding noise is audible, the transmission may be to blame. The same grinding sound or a clunking noise heard from an automatic transmission can also mean trouble.

If you have noticed that your reverse gear has become sluggish, unresponsive or delayed, there is a chance your car may need transmission work. Transmission problems are not an uncommon vehicular problem, and it is important to address them promptly to keep them from becoming a serious hazard on the road.
You May Have a Faulty Transmission

When your car`s critical components that control the transmission are acting up you can very likely only be able to drive in reverse. This could likely be due to a faulty computer that controls the transmission, a faulty transmission solenoid, or another issue with your transmission.

Problems Reversing – One common problem that can happen with a clogged filter is difficulty moving in reverse. The lack of fluid flowing through the transmission can cause the reverse gear to lock. This may prevent the car from going in reverse altogether, or it may cause it to hesitate before launching into reverse.
The switch prevents the engine from starting when not in park or neutral. This eleiminates the risk of starting an automatic car in drive or reverse mode. Located in the linkage or the transmission box, a bad neutral safety switch can cause irreversible damage to your car`s engine and transmission.
If your car`s transmission has an internal pressure problem, it can cause the torque converter to lock up, causing your car to stall. Though not as often the culprit of engine stalling than others, the transmission shouldn`t be overlooked when searching for the root cause.
The internal transmission seals are leaking pressure to reverse and forward gears at the same time and lock up transmission then stalls the engine. You will need to have a pressure test on the transmission to see if the leak is caused by a leaking seal or a leaking reverse or forward solenoid.
There are three major causes for a stalled engine: A lack of fuel, a lack of air flow and improper ignition. Running out of fuel is one of the most common causes of engine stalling, but dirty fuel injectors or a plugged fuel filter can also be the culprit.
The internal transmission seals are leaking pressure to reverse and forward gears at the same time and lock up transmission then stalls the engine. You will need to have a pressure test on the transmission to see if the leak is caused by a leaking seal or a leaking reverse or forward solenoid.
If your car`s transmission has an internal pressure problem, it can cause the torque converter to lock up, causing your car to stall. Though not as often the culprit of engine stalling than others, the transmission shouldn`t be overlooked when searching for the root cause.
The internal transmission seals are leaking pressure to reverse and forward gears at the same time and lock up transmission then stalls the engine. You will need to have a pressure test on the transmission to see if the leak is caused by a leaking seal or a leaking reverse or forward solenoid.
When your car`s critical components that control the transmission are acting up you can very likely only be able to drive in reverse. This could likely be due to a faulty computer that controls the transmission, a faulty transmission solenoid, or another issue with your transmission.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

The engine stalls when I put the car in reverse, but if I go past reverse into drive there is not an issue.
ANSWER : Hi there. Usually when you shift into reverse and engage the brake it will cause the engine RPM to drop; as it’s creating a load against the transmission and the engine. If the engine stalls, it may be caused by a faulty idle control valve, bad O2 sensors, or clogged fuel injectors.

In regards to the "pan", we’re not sure what you are referring, so it may be a good idea to contact one of our local professional mechanics to complete a battery inspection to determine what’s going on with your 2010 Ford Focus.

I put it in reverse and it went forward. I then put it in drive and it went in reverse. Why would this happen?
ANSWER : Hi and thanks for contacting YourMechanic. Check the shifter cable to the transmission and make sure that the cable is hooked up correctly. What seems to be happening is either the shifter cable is not attached to the transmission correctly or the valve body (transmission control module) has a major leak and needs repaired or replaced. If you need further assistance diagnosing your vehicle, then seek out a professional, such as one from YourMechanic, to pinpoint the cause of the shifting problem and advise you on repairs.

Engine stalls when put into gear
ANSWER : Hello. Engine stalling can be caused by a wide variety of issues. Anything from transmission issues, fuel problems, to wiring problems can all cause an engine to stall when put into gear. If you recently rebuilt the transmission it may be possible that the issue is related to the service. As you stated, it may be possible that the torque converter is locking up for some reason, perhaps due to a mechanical issue or a fluid pressure issue. It may also be possible that the stalling is being caused by issues with the engine management system. Perhaps an issue with one of the components, such as the fuel pump or idle air control valve is causing the vehicle to stall out when put under load. I would start by trying to determine if the stalling is transmission or engine management related and go from there. If the check engine light is illuminated, scanning for trouble codes will likely reveal some insight into what the problem may be. As these sorts of engine management issues can sometimes be difficult to diagnose, I would recommend having a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic, come to your location to diagnose what may be causing your stalling.

Check Engine Light is on. Car idles high when put in drive or reverse and engine stalls when too much gas is applied.
ANSWER : Is there also a loud hissing or sucking noise and maybe a lean code stored in the engine control computer? The high idle sounds like there may be a problem with the idle air control valve or there may be a large vacuum leak on the vehicle. I see your note about the new fuel filter, but the fuel pressure should be checked to make sure the pump is functioning properly. A failing ignition distributor may also cause the vehicle to stall.

An experienced technician, such as one from YourMechanic, can come to your location to determine why the engine is idling at a higher rate than usual and suggest the necessary repairs.

Reverse lights won’t turn on when I put it in reverse. Dark blue wire has power, light green (reverse) wire has no power.
ANSWER : Hi there. Remove the fuse to the reverse lighting system. On the side that does not have power, use a digit ohm meter and check for resistance. The meter should read OL (out of limits). Now, turn on the ignition key to the ’ON’ position, set the parking brake and chock the wheels, and put the transmission in reverse. Check the connection again for resistance. There should be a resistance of 5 ohms or less. If the meter reads OL, then there is a break in the wiring from the fuse box to the switch. Since you disturbed the fuse box, there could be a wire that is loose or broken that goes to the reverse lights. If you need further assistance with your reverse lights not working, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

doesn’t move when i put it in reverse but then i put it in 4 low then reverse and it slips but it moves.
ANSWER : You have the Chrysler 46RE transmission. Among the possible causes of what you describe is a rear servo piston that is sticking or broken, pin bore wear and/or the reverse band is slipping. The servo piston on the 46RE has a tendency to get misaligned in the bore and that results in inadequate force on the band. If bad enough, reverse line pressure will apply force against the misaligned piston, breaking or damaging the piston. The bore can also get worn resulting in band apply pressure that is too low. I would consider the foregoing possibility first. This can potentially be repaired with the transmission still in place but if the bore is damaged, that could be a problem because the bore is integral to the case. If you want this investigated, and repaired if possible, please request a no reverse diagnostic and the responding certified mechanic will get this resolved for you. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

I just got a new transmission put in my car and it drives and reverse but won’t go up hill.
ANSWER : This may be a sign of a faulty transmission control solenoid. As you know, automatic transmissions use pressurized hydraulic fluid to change gears. Every time a gear change is required, the car’s computer activates a transmission solenoid, which directs transmission fluid into the valve body to engage the correct gear. When this is faulty or not working properly, this can cause a delay in gear shifting or in some cases cause the car to not shift at all. I would recommend having an expert from YourMechanic come to your location to take the car for a test drive to more specifically determine the cause for this.

My car starts i put it in reverse but when i put it in to drive it has trouble moving
ANSWER : The transmission most likely have worn out clutch bands or discs inside the transmission. The bands hold the reverse first band to give you forward gears. I would recommend having the transmission pressure tested first to see if the problem is in the valve body or in the clutch bands and discs. You may need to replace or overhaul the transmission.