Car engine off going downhill on D


Asked by Apr 24, 2015 at 10:51 AM about the 1996 Honda Civic EX

Question type: General

My car was overheating while on the
freeway.  I was going downhill so I shut
the engine off. I left the car on D4 and
sis not put it on N. I went downhill with
engine off in traffic for about 30 secs
to 1 minute.  Now the check engine
light is on.  Did I mess up my car?

8 Answers


Get it scanned to find what code was tripped.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

With it being an automatic I'm not sure if that damaged anything or not. To me the car is still in gear so the engine is still turning over, I normally leave my vehicle in N when going down hill anyway and use my brakes to slow. However I drive a manual, so I'm not sure if it's the same in an automatic.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Never never shut your engine off while at speed. The steering wheel could lock even if you put it back to run without starting, there is a moment that the wheel IS locked. Also, if engine is still turning you are damaging your catalytic convertor.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I'm curious Htwhlsmug93 why you do that. Leaving it in gear consumes less gas downhill than idling in neutral, and puts excessive wear on your brakes. While going downhill gravity is pushing your engine to turn and used NO fuel, and idling uses fuel


Thanks everybody for your opinions. And that will be the last time I shut the online off while moving!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Doubtful you messed anything up, but the ECM detected something and turned on the light, possibly the HOT condition, I would get the code pulled and write it down then clear it and drive it as you normally would, if the light stays off then it was caused by turn the key off while in drive mode, if it comes back on with the engine running then get it checked and fixed and also fix the cause of the running hot. Most vehicles today become nothing but air pumps when in full decel mode, the ECM shuts off the injector pulse so you can safely use the engine braking as an addition to your normal braking. Sheese engineers always tinkering.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Best Answer

ok- it's a 20 year old Honda-

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I see your point tennisshoes.I was thinking of the cat because it's a '96

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