What to Do When Your Car Shuts Off When You Press the Brakes

When you press the brakes on your car, it is designed to shut off. This is an important safety feature that helps the car come to a complete stop without stalling or rolling away. When the brakes are pressed, the brake pedal sends a signal to the engine, which then shuts off the ignition. This ensures that no further acceleration occurs and that the car comes to a complete stop. The car may also turn off additional systems such as lights and audio when this happens. It is important to make sure that your brakes are in good condition and working properly in order for this feature to work properly. If you experience any issues with this feature, it is recommended that you take your car to an experienced mechanic for inspection and possible repairs.


When your car shuts off when you press the brakes, it can be a troubling and potentially dangerous situation. While it’s important to take your car to a certified mechanic for a proper diagnosis and repairs, it’s also helpful to know some of the possible causes of this issue so that you can better assess the situation and have an idea of what the repair might involve. Here is a step-by-step guide to troubleshooting the issue when your car shuts off when you press the brakes.

Engine Issues

The first area to look at is engine issues. If there is an issue with the engine, it could cause problems with the brakes, resulting in your car shutting down when you press them. Common engine issues that can lead to this problem include air filter blockage, faulty spark plugs, or dirty fuel injectors. If any of these components are not working correctly, they could be preventing your engine from getting enough power, resulting in your car shutting off when you press the brakes.

Electrical Problems

Another potential cause of this problem is electrical issues. Electrical problems can interfere with the normal functioning of various systems in your vehicle, including those related to braking. Common electrical problems that could lead to this issue include a faulty brake light switch or a weak battery cable connection. If either of these components are not working properly, they may interfere with your vehicle’s ability to brake properly and result in your car shutting off when you press on the brakes.

Fuel Delivery Issues

Last but not least, fuel delivery issues could also be causing this problem. If there is an issue with how fuel is being delivered to your vehicle’s engine, it could cause disruptions in power output which could result in your car shutting off when you apply pressure on the brakes. Common fuel delivery issues that could lead to this problem include clogged fuel injectors or a faulty fuel pump relay switch. If either of these components are not working properly, they may prevent enough fuel from reaching your vehicle’s engine and lead to power disruptions which may result in your car shutting down when you press on the brakes.

Overall, diagnosing why a car shuts off when you press on its brakes requires careful troubleshooting and assessment of various component systems in order for an accurate diagnosis and repair plan to be determined. It’s important for any driver experiencing this issue to take their vehicle into a certified mechanic as soon as possible so that any underlying issues can be addressed promptly before they become more serious or potentially hazardous situations develop due to lack of proper maintenance or repairs .


Car owners must take good care of their vehicle to ensure safe operation and to prevent breakdowns. One of the most common issues that can occur is when a car shuts off when the brakes are applied. This can be a serious problem and should not be taken lightly. It is important to understand the potential causes of why this may happen and how to react if it does happen. By taking some safety precautions and knowing what to do in the event of a breakdown, car owners will be better prepared for any situation.

Checking the Battery

The first step in diagnosing why a car shuts off when the brakes are applied is to check the battery. If it is low on charge or has gone bad, then it could be preventing enough power from getting to the brakes. To test this, you can use an inexpensive voltmeter or multimeter to measure the voltage output of your battery. If it is low, then you may need to replace it in order for your brakes to function properly again.

Inspecting the Electrical System

If checking the battery does not solve your problem, then you should inspect your electrical system for any faults that could be causing your car shutting off when brakes are applied. This includes inspecting all wiring harnesses and terminals, as well as checking for any frayed or worn out wires that could be shorting out when pressure is applied on them. Additionally, you should also look for any loose connections or corroded terminals that may be reducing electrical flow throughout your system.

Checking Fuel Delivery System

Another potential cause of car shutting off when braking can be due to a malfunctioning fuel delivery system. This could include problems with fuel injectors, clogged fuel lines, or other components related to fuel delivery that aren’t functioning correctly. To diagnose this issue, you should have a professional technician examine your vehicle and determine what needs repair or replacement in order for it to operate properly again.

Safety Considerations and Precautions

When dealing with car shutting off when brakes are applied, there are some safety considerations and precautions that must always be taken into account. Firstly, drivers should always make sure they have an emergency kit in their vehicle so they are prepared in case of an unexpected breakdown or accident on the road. Additionally, drivers must also know how to react if their vehicle does shut down suddenly while driving in order keep themselves safe from harm and other motorists on the road as well.

FAQ & Answers

Q: What should I do if my car shuts off when I press the brakes?
A: If your car shuts off when you press the brakes, the first thing you should do is to assess the situation and determine if it is safe to do so. If it is safe, you should turn off the engine and use a diagnostic tool to try and identify what may be causing the issue. Potential causes could include engine issues, electrical problems, or fuel delivery issues.

Q: How can I diagnose what is causing my car to shut off when I press the brakes?
A: To diagnose what is causing your car to shut off when you press the brakes, follow a step-by-step troubleshooting process. This process will involve checking the battery, inspecting the electrical system, and checking for any fuel delivery issues. It may also be necessary to seek professional assistance if you are unable to identify the cause of the issue yourself.

Q: What safety considerations should I take into account when dealing with a car that shuts off when I press the brakes?
A: When dealing with a car that shuts off when you press the brakes, it is important to take safety precautions into consideration. This includes preparing for potential breakdowns by having an emergency kit in your vehicle as well as knowing how to react in case of an unexpected shut down. It is also important that you ensure that all repairs are done by qualified professionals and that all necessary safety measures are taken at all times.

Q: Is it normal for a car to shut off when brakes are pressed?
A: No, it is not normal for a car to shut off when brakes are pressed. This could indicate a serious issue with your vehicle’s engine or electrical system and should be addressed immediately by a qualified professional in order to avoid further damage or potential accidents.

Q: Can I fix my car myself if it shuts off when I press the brakes?
A: While there are some minor repairs that can be done at home on your vehicle, any more serious issues such as those related to shutting off while pressing on the brake pedal should always be handled by a qualified professional mechanic as they have access to special tools and knowledge required in order to properly diagnose and repair these types of issues.

In conclusion, it is clear that when the brakes of a car are pressed, the car shuts off. This is due to the fact that the brake pedal is connected to a hydraulic system which, when depressed, transmits pressure to slow or stop the vehicle. The pressure of this hydraulic system also causes an electrical circuit to be broken, resulting in the car shutting off. This important safety feature ensures that cars can be stopped quickly and safely in an emergency situation.

Author Profile

Carl Frisch
Carl Frisch
With more than 30 years in the bicycle industry, I have a strong background in bicycle retailing, sales, marketing and customer service. I have a passion for cycling and a dedication to excellence. As a manager, I worked diligently to increase my capabilities and responsibilities, managing up to eleven mechanics (at Palo Alto Bicycles) and later as a working partner in my own store.

As the shop owner of Spoke n’ Word Cycles in Socorro, NM, the success of the mission was my responsibility, which I pursued passionately since we opened in 2003 through the spring of 2011. I am adept at managing owned and loan inventory, preparing weekly & annual inventory statements, and managing staff. The role as managing partner also allowed me tremendous freedom. I used this personal freedom to become more deeply involved in my own advancement as a mechanic, to spearhead local trail building, and advocating for cycling both locally and regionally.

As a mechanic, I have several years doing neutral support, experience as a team mechanic, and experience supporting local rides, races, club events. I consistently strive to ensure that bicycles function flawlessly by foreseeing issues and working with the riders, soigners, coaches and other mechanics. Even with decades of experience as a shop mechanic and team mechanic, and continue to pursue greater involvement in this sport as a US Pro Mechanic, and UCI Pro Mechanic.

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