Why does my 2004 Chevy Aveo keep stalling while driving?


Asked by May 05, 2012 at 09:04 AM about the 2004 Chevrolet Aveo

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My 2004 Chevy Aveo has 219,000 miles on it and the timing belt was changed at 200,000 miles. The car keeps stalling while driving. I coast over to the shoulder and let it sit for a minute and it starts right back up and runs with no problem. I put some heat in the tank thinking that there was water in it and it hasn't helped.

24 Answers


Not enough info. Does it run good when it runs? A good diagnosis is worth a thousand guesses.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Yes. When I first start it it runs fine and then after it dies, I let it sit for a minute and it starts and runs fine. If I try to start it as soon as it dies, it will crank but not turn over. Is it a possible fuel pump problem?

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

It could be the fuel pump but its unlikely if it has been doing it for awhile. Intermitent pumps don't usually last very long. The first thing would be to try to determine if its fuel or electrical. Q: After it dies, pullover and turn off radios, fans,ignition, etc. You want it quiet as possible. Immediately turn key to Run (not start) and listen for the pump to run. If good, it will run for approx 5 secs. You may have 2 chances at this so turn off and back on again and listen. If you hear the pump, (it makes a faint whirring sound) then its propaly working and you have to look for ECM or ignition problem.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

check the catalytic converter

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I have already replaced the catalytic comverter. I tried changing the crank shaft sensor and while my boyfriend discovered some wires with the insulation melted off and every once in a while the wires would touch the metal on the engine block and short out. That is why there was no rhyme or reason to when it would stall.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.


8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.

More info is needed and would like to know how it stalls, Does it miss? surge, starve, or just shut off? How does it run on restart? I can tell you its NOT the catalytic converter - given what you said, not sure why anyone would suggest that. Fuel pressure or ECM fault is probably the best guess. If at all possible, and it stalls quite often, have your mechanic put a pressure gauge on the fuel rail and place it so you can see it (out the back of the hood) Watch it when it stalls, and most importantly when you try to restart it. If you DO NOT have adequate pressure (50-60psi) then you have found the problem! Also check the fuel pump relay before changing the pump. Its easy and a lot less $.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

I mentioned the catalytic converter because in my research that is what I read. Have they checked the spark plugs lately. May seem kinda obvious, but I recently had the same problem and it turned out to be the spark plugs.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

Catalytic conveters will plug and cause a sluggish feel due to increased backpressure. They will not make a car "shut off" as listed. Even if it was related, a re-start would produce the same, immediate results - sluggish. Spark plugs can foul but I'm sure all 4 do not fail at the same time and then work again right away at re-start. On a car this new, plugs will typically last 100K + and do not fail as indicated. There is a lot of info missing here and it needs to be properly diagnosed by a knowledgable tech who understands the symptoms.

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

Well my misinformation is sure helping me learn from your correct information. Thanks for the input. Let me know how it goes, in case it every happens to me. I think it might be electrical.


hi there you said you replace the crankshaft sensor..... now.if its.still stalling i will suggest to replace the CAMSHAFT SENSOR (about $45). when the camshaft sensor.goes.bad it.will make.your car to shake.and loose.power and when the sensor.gets worst your car simply will not start or hesitate to do it...... try the camshaft sensor and then.the wires......this.is and easy job and.it is.located in.between/upper level where.the.timing belt is.... just remove the timing belt cover and you.will see.it.in between the two gears, it has a wire.connected on top...

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I have an 06 Aveo mine did the same thing would stall out and when I shut it off for a few minutes it ran fine. It was the throttle sensor. I had to replace the whole throttle body. I tried to but the sensor at the auto parts store but the holes would not match up. I had to get the part from the dealership and they would not sell me just the sensor had to but the whole throttle body was over $300.00. Then there tried to charge me an additional $200.00 to put it on. I had a friend put it on took adout 15 minutes was not were hard at all.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

My suggestion would to check the fuel filter, and change it. Make sure the gas cap is on correctly. Simple checks, sometimes that is all there is. Sounds like a fuel feed problem. You might have someone do a diagnostic on the fuel system and or clean/flush it out. Carburetor engines were a pain,but a lot less problems. Just a small hammer, a whack, and off you go again.


My 2004 Chevy Aveo did this, or something similar. The odometer would begin to bounce erratically, surging and dying off, with engine shutting off while driving if it ever went below the "0" (all electrical components would remain on and unaffected). It only did this at slow speeds, such as coming up to a stop sign, or in heavy, crawling traffic on the freeway, and the dying could be prevented if the gas could be tapped a bit to rev the engine and keep it above the "0". Like your car, turning my car completely off and restarting it temporarily fixed things. If this is what yours is doing, mine was solved by doing all of the below: 1) changing out the O2 sensors 2) replacing the air intake hose between the air filter and engine, which had cracked and rotted. 3) cleaning the EGR valve If the above does not match what your car is doing, this page may give you at least some idea where to start: http://www.wikihow.com/Determine-Why-a-Car-Stalls-at- Intersections

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

I just checked the site mentioned above and it is a good one. Read it and hopefully you'll bid Skite a best answer click.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

I have the same issue, anyone solved this problem?

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

My issue ended up being some exposed wires that would strike up against the engine block and short out. The key was every time my car stalled I smelled metal sparking like when I was a kid playing with the electric race car sets. Electrical tape solved the problem. Hope your issue is just as simple!

i changed fuel pump.. so that not the problem


Mine was the brake switch. Inside the car. I paid about $170. the part was $35 the rest was labor. Have them check the brake switch!!!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Go to autozone first and get free diagnostic test. To narrow it down. Then go to firestone and pay for DIAGNOSTIC TESTING. That will tell you EXACTLY WHAT IT IS. bring your wallet.


The free Autozone tests are just a code reader. Sometimes helpful but only when there is an error code stored. Shutting off isn't one of them unless related to another failure. The term diagnostics can mean many things but a simple code reader is probably not much help here so plan on paying someone who's knowledgeable and will charge accordingly.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Yes I agree, but it was FREE and a place to start. Then I went to Firestone and paid for a REAL DIAGNOSTIC TEST $75. With coupon, and they found the exact problem,. So instead of replacing a bunch of parts NOT BROKEN. it was worth it to FIX THE EXACT BROKEN PART . And now my Aveo 60,000+ miles runs smooth as a cadillac. The fuel ejection cleaning for $100.did NOT IMPROVE GAS MILEAGE THO. IT IS WORSE. That is why I am trying to find best fuel cleaner in bottle, how to put in, how often, how full should gas tank be.


Good to hear. Its usually just one thing and the fix is simple. Regarding fuel system cleaners - Most of today's fuels have approx 10% ethanol which is a very powerful cleaner eliminating the need for additional cleaners/additives. Ethanol fuel will also reduce miles-per-gallon as it contains less energy than non- ethanol fuel. With rare exception, a $100 cleaning is unnecessary and is nothing but a feel-good money maker for the shop. If by chance you have a failed or plugged injector, it will be obvious because the engine will miss of have poor cylinder balance. Rarely will an "injector service" result in better mileage typically because there was nothing wrong with them in the first place. If you still feel the need to add something to your tank, use a brand name one found at many parts stores and follow the label instructions. Most are 95+% mineral spirits (petroleum distillate) which is another name for paint thinner.

It turned out to be the crank sensor... after i change fuel pump, and coil..

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