Why Won't My Car Go When I Shift Into Drive?


15 Answers

Matt Domm Profile
Matt Domm answered
There are a lot of people that find that even though they put the car into drive it actually does not move and this is often caused by a simple oversight on the part of the driver. Another thing that can cause this problem is a serious fault with the transmissions from the engine. The first thing that you need to do in order to determine the cause of the problem is to see whether the car has a manual transmission or automatic transmission. It will be easy to do some basic checks on your own; however, you may also need to get a mechanic to look at the car in order to fully determine what is causing the problem. 
The first basic check that you should do is to determine that the car is actually turned on. This may seem like a very obvious thing but there are some cars that run so quietly that you may not even be aware that it has not started when you have tried to start it. Make sure that the parking brake has been taken off. The parking brake will stop the car from moving even when it has been put into gear. 
It is also a good idea to make sure that the shifter has been fully engaged into gear and this is especially the case if it is a manual transmission engine that is on the car. Sometimes the shifter will not go into gear properly if the clutch pedal is not properly depressed, therefore try pushing the clutch pedal right down to the floor of the car and put the car into gear. It may help to try starting the car in a different gear and this includes reverse as this will help you to determine if it is one specific gear that is causing the problem.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
It could be a broken linkage ,dirty  transmission filter, clogged up and the transmission fluid is not passing through to give power to the differential to make the tires turn
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I have a 1990 lincoln Continental and wen I put car in drive it was driving but all of a sudden it stopped driving and just revs up
Lisa Marie Halsey Muniz Profile
I have had out transmission go out a few times in our vehicle.  You need to always check your fluids.  Especially, if the car is automatic.  You need to check the automatic transmission fluid regularly.  If it is low add some.  Usually, if the car moves forward and don't move in reverse that is the first sign of a transmission going bad.  Then the gears wont shift at all.  If it is a stick shift, then I am not sure.  It could be the drive shift or something else going out.  It could be anything.  If you don't get what you are looking for here.  Then I would take it to a mechanic or maybe have a friend or neighbor check it out whom knows something about cars to save you some money.  Good luck. 
eric jones Profile
eric jones answered
I just acquired a 1990 Jeep Cherokee Sport, the car runs, it has been sitting for a year. I have just started it, however the car will not shift gears and go into drive, I have 1st,2nd,3rd, Reverse
and I am able to put it into 4 wheel drive. It will not go over 20 miles an hour and it winds out at 25. Please let me know what it could be
Steve Profile
Steve answered
First thing, put the transmission in park, start the engine, with the engine at idle, check the fluid level with the dipstick. If it's low, add fluid and try it again.
 If it still doesn't move and your are sure that it is full of fluid, then you most likely have an internal tyranny problem that would require an overhaul.
thanked the writer.
Anonymous commented
Well i asked somebody else and they said that a valve is stuck or something thing like that would that be a possibility?
Steve commented
If it were a stuck valve, it would most likely still move. The fact that it doesn't move at all, indicates there is no main line pressure, because of low fluid, failed Torque Converter or burnt out Clutches in your transmission.
Since you say you have 1st, 2nd, 3rd and overdrive, I know you have an automatic transmission.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
If its an automatic the bands in the trans might be stretched and glazed, or your clutches are out. You might also want to check the fluid
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
My honda accord is due for a timing belt, will that make it only drive in one gear I can only drive in second gear, is it the transmission
John Correia Profile
John Correia answered
I drove my car home after a blizzard. It sat for one day because the battery was bad. Now it won't go in forward, reverse or anything it just revs up. I'm thinking maybe the fluid in the transmission may be frozen. I hope the transmission isn't bad. The car drove home so perfect. I've owned it for 5 years and never had very many problems. I guess many people had problems with the blizzard so at least I made it home and didn't have to sleep in my car. I'm thankful for the scientific determination of the engineers who built my vehicle.
Brandie Malatt Profile
Brandie Malatt answered
I have a 96' dodge caravan and I can put it into park and neutral and it will start but still can't put it into any other gears and move the vehicle
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I have a 1970 chevy impala automatic and I just got the front of the car re wired and had a push button kill switch put into it and I just got a new transmission for it and when I put my car in reverse or drive in doesnt do anything and when I push the car I can move it forwards and backwards. What could my problem possibly be ?
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I have   Acura 2.3 cl JUst changed the transmission and now the car seem as if its getting too much gas   just changed the MAP SENSOR. It still doesnt want to move when I give it gas it shut off. What can you suggest.
Larissa Crowe Profile
Larissa Crowe answered
O.k I need help..when I put my car into drive, it wont go unless I rev the gas peddle and than jerks I wonder if it the starter??. I have a 1998 chrysler concorde
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
If the car is a dodge, block the tires, then put it in neutral then check the fluid level, they do not read right in park. You WILL leave it low if you check it in park which will burn the transmission up pretty quick if its low enough

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