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Ask A. Penland Your Own Question
A. Penland
A. Penland, Ford Senior Master Technician, ASE
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 6575
Experience:  ASE Master Certified, ASE Advanced Gasoline Engine Performance
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My car wont start on Park only when I put it in Neutral.

Customer Question

My car won't start on "Park" only when I put it in Neutral. Ford Mustang
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  A. Penland replied 8 years ago.
HiCustomer Thank you for asking your question on JustAnswer. The other Experts and I are working on your answer. By the way, it would help us to know:
-What year is your Ford?

-How many miles are on your Ford?
-What type of engine is in your Ford?
-What have you already tried?

Thank you again for trusting us with your problem. Please reply as soon as possible so that we can finish answering your question.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
It's a 2001, 97.000 miles. V6 engine, Haven't really tried anything yet. It was fine yesterday, I took it to the emissions test, and it would not start back up.
Expert:  A. Penland replied 8 years ago.

First make sure your shifter is working properly. Make sure it is completely in park and try to start it. Also push the shifter foward and see if it will start. If not, your transmission range sensor is shorted and will need to be replaced. It is located on the drivers side of the transmission. WHen in park or neutral, it completes the circuit allowing your Mustang to start.



Customer: replied 8 years ago.
If I have to take the car and have this job done at a shop, how much should I expect to pay for it, otherwise, how do I go about doing it myself?
Expert:  A. Penland replied 8 years ago.
I cannot estimate the cost for another shop to repair it, but if you want to replace it, I can walk you through it. You can call around to service shops and ask them for an estimate over the phone onthe cost of the repair.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Could you walk me through it? Thank you.
Expert:  A. Penland replied 8 years ago.

First place the vehicle up on jack stands so you can access the under side of the transmission. On the drivers side of the trasnmission is the Range Sensor.

First Disconnect the connector. Place the transmission in park.


  • Disconnect the manual lever shift control cable.
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  • Loosen the digital TR bolts.
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  • There are 2 lines to line up the Range sensor. One on the center of the sensor and one on the caseing of the sensor. Line them up when installing the new one. Check the old one before removing it to make sure the lines are lined up. Install the new sensor into the same position as the old one. The reassemble the linkage and bolts. Reconnect the connector and test for proper starting in park and neutral and check for back up light operation in reverse.