Jeep Shuts Off While Driving and Won’t Start – Causes & Fix

Jeep is the safest ride for driving on highways, mountains, sloppy areas, or rough terrains due to its stability and comfy driving. Still, the journey becomes frustrating if the jeep shuts off while driving and won’t start. Multiple reasons could have caused this problem, like an empty fuel tank, crankshaft position, or alternator issue.

In this blog, you will get a deep knowledge of the reasons that brought you to this annoying state and the ideas to fix them. The key to solving these problems is patience and mindfulness.

So, let us dive in to know what you can do when your jeep cuts off while driving.

Also Read: Jeep Radio Won’t Turn Off? Here’s What to Do!

Key Takeaways

  • Refilling the fuel tank, replacing the ignition switch, troubleshooting error codes using an OBD-II scanner, and changing the old battery are the easiest possible fixes.

What causes a jeep to stall while driving?

Jeep Shuts Off While Driving and Won’t Start

1. Empty fuel tank

Running out of fuel is the most common issue of jeep stalling and gets more irritating if there is no gas station nearby. It happens if you forget to refill the tank, while another reason may be the faulty fuel pump sensor. In certain cases, the fuel pump sensor doesn’t give the correct reading, causing misconceptions.

How to fix it?

Refill your fuel tank. 

How to avoid it?

You can maintain a flash card to note how much mileage your jeep gives you if your tank is full. You can take it as a reference reading and refill the fuel tank as the particular reading is about to come.

2. Faulty ignition switch

The ignition switch is the gateway to igniting a car engine by connecting the battery with a spark plug. A worn-out or broken ignition switch can cause the jeep to stall mid-driving, resulting in voltage loss due to heat and vibrations. Generally, the ignition switch wears out if the jeep grows old or has travelled vast miles.

How to fix it?

If the ignition switch is caught up with dust and debris, try using a rust remover and apply it with a pressure nozzle through the keyhole. If this trick doesn’t work, you must replace the ignition switch.

3. Bad MAF

MAF stands for Mass Air Flow sensor. MAF is responsible for sending signals to the ECU that evaluates the quantity of fuel entering or leaving the combustion chamber. It is all due to the bad MAF if you face issues like reduced mileage, idling, or vibrations while driving. 

Malfunctioning MAF is a rare issue but is usually seen in those jeeps that run in deserted areas. As in sandy areas, the airflow tube is caught up by dust and debris, ultimately blocking the signals to ECU.

How to Fix?

Open up the front hood and check the condition of the MAF sensor. It lies between the throttle bottle and the air filter of the engine compartment.

Now take your OBD-II scanner and read the error code. If the check engine light flashes, it confirms the problem with your MAF. Replace the sensor.

How to avoid it?

You can easily prevent this from happening again by cleaning the MAF sensor regularly.

4. Alternator issue

A major misconception is that a battery drives a car while an alternator generates the needed power. 

If you are driving a jeep and suddenly the battery warning light starts flashing on your dashboard, the car is not getting enough power to drive the jeep. It means the vehicle is about to stop and won’t start again until the problem is resolved. 

An electric current runs as the main driver in the working of a jeep as the spark plug, fuel pump, and numerous other components rely on the alternator. Therefore, if the alternator stops working, the jeep dies.

How to fix it?

Take an OBD-II scanner and troubleshoot the error codes. If there is nothing wrong, check for the alternator voltage; if it is below 13 volts, your alternator may have a problem.

If you don’t possess an OBD-II scanner, you can do it with the help of a multimeter. Just power your engine and measure the voltage of the car battery.

5. Faulty jeep battery

If you hear a click sound while igniting the jeep and it refuses to start, you certainly have a battery issue.

Another misconception that people deal with is that the battery is used just for the first start-up of the car, which needs to be validated. Suppose the jeep battery is in bad shape. In that case, the alternator tries harder to balance voltage due to, which the alternator wears out earlier, eventually putting more stress on the engine.

How to fix it?

Replace the jeep battery if it is unable to produce sufficient voltage. Or, if there is an issue with the terminals, try cleaning them out with sandpaper.

How to avoid it?

2 to 3 years is the recommended replacement period for a car battery, depending upon the mileage it covers. Hence it is favorable to follow this timeline for keeping your jeep healthy.

6. Malfunction with signal sensors

Wrangler, Cherokee, and Compass are modern German jeeps with several signal sensors for troubleshooting issues and timely forwarding the error code to ECU. Afterward, ECU sends signals to the injectors, spark plug, or actuators.

If the sensors malfunction, they send wrong signals to the ECU, like missing signals from the sparkplug, missing injector pulse, and other trouble codes that result in the jeep shut off.

How to fix it?

If your signal sensors send wrong readings to the ECM and cause your jeep to stop, seek professional help immediately. If the sensors need replacement, consider this step directly to avoid any other further hazards.

Also Read: 8 Jeep Grand Cherokee Suspension Problems With Solutions

What to do if the jeep shuts off while driving?

Cutting off a jeep while driving might be the most frustrating thing to happen to you while you are going but what you need to do is maintain safety and take the following measures:

  • Pull over your jeep to a roadside.
  • Turn on the navigation light to alert the upcoming cars of your jeep breakdown.
  • Try to restart the jeep a few times.
  • If you know the basics of a jeep, check the working of an alternator and battery, and read the fuel gauge.
  • If the problem is out of your control, seek professional help.

What causes a Jeep Wrangler to shut off while driving?

Shutting off a jeep wrangler while driving indicates issues with a faulty crankshaft position sensor, an empty fuel tank, or disrupted airflow due to a problematic MAF sensor. Otherwise, a software glitch can also cause the engine to cut down.

Final Thoughts

If you love riding your jeep, you must also care for its health and wellness. For that, give a high-pressure wash regularly to clean any clogged filters and remove dirt and debris. While on the other side, wear and tear is expected with everything, so keep up the maintenance schedule to avoid these petty issues bringing you on your nerves.

Till then, have a safe drive!

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