So, you get into your Jeep, put your foot on the brake, and press the start button as usual. But trying to shift gear to R or D, nothing happens. A message in your instrument cluster says, “Auto Park Engaged, Shift to P, then Select Gear.”
You follow the instructions, but the vehicle is stuck in the park and can’t start, and the same message keeps displaying. That’s a frustrating experience and a safety concern, especially when partially blocking a road. We may have a solution below.
What Does the Jeep Auto Park Engaged Mean?
The Jeep “Auto Park Engaged” means the Auto Park system is active. The Auto Park is one of the numerous modern safety features on your Jeep that enhance your safety. It prevents you from accidentally exiting the vehicle when it’s unsafe.
That is if the Jeep isn’t in park and you exit the vehicle with the engine running. Also, the Auto Park feature protects you from moving the vehicle when a door is ajar. You’ll see an icon in the instrument cluster if the driver’s door is ajar. If you attempt to drive off the vehicle in that state, the Auto Park system may engage and stop it.
The Auto Park will automatically activate when the following conditions are satisfied:
- Your Jeep has an 8-speed transmission
- The driver’s door is ajar
- When you remove the driver’s door
- The seat pad sensor detects you (the driver) is missing (off the seat).
- You’ve unbuckled the seat belt
- The vehicle isn’t in PARK
- You’ve not depressed the brake pedal
- The car is moving at 1.2 mph (2 km/h) or less
How Can I Fix the Auto Park Engaged Issue on Jeep?
To fix the Auto Park Engaged issue on Jeep, check if the ‘door ajar’ notification on the dashboard is on. If you see it, close the door properly, and the feature will disengage. Another way to escape the situation is by pressing the accelerator pedal or ‘resetting’ the system. The reset involves performing a few engine-ON and OFF cycles.
Possible Solution #1: Close the Door
If the Auto Park activated the way it should, you’re supposed to see the door ajar icon on the instrument cluster. If you can see the little indicator on the dashboard, close the door properly with the vehicle in park. Shift to drive or reverse again, and you should now be out of that frustrating situation. However, something else has happened if you don’t see the ‘Open Door’ notification.
Possible Solution #2: Press the Accelerator Pedal
Before trying this fix, ensure you’ve locked the door fully and that your seat belt is on. These conditions are essential for the brake disengagement to work. Once you’ve done that, press the accelerator, and hopefully, the parking brake will automatically deactivate.
Possible Solution #3: ‘Reset’ the Jeep
Shut off your Jeep and turn it back on. Repeat a few times so it can ‘reset’ and allow you to move. As you do that, ensure you’ve properly closed the driver’s door and buckled the seat belt.
Alternatively, shut the Jeep off and open and close the door. Press the start button, WITHOUT YOUR FOOT ON THE BRAKE, and turn the vehicle off. Repeat the third time. After that, put your foot back on the brake, press the start switch, and move to R or D. This time, the car will probably comply.
How To Turn Off the Auto Park on Jeep
To turn off the Auto Park on Jeep, go to the Uconnect screen and navigate to the “Settings” tab. While on this screen, tap on the “Brakes” option. Next, uncheck the Auto Park entry, and you will have successfully disabled the feature.
Please consult your owner’s manual if that doesn’t work for you. The manual will offer a step-by-step guide on how to deactivate the feature. Different Jeep models may have different ways of disabling the Auto Park system.
The steps below may also apply to various models:
- Open your Jeep “Settings” using the touchscreen display or pressing the button.
- Choose the “Brakes” option from the menu.
- Find the “AutoPark Brake” feature and then choose “Off.”
- Verify that you’ve turned off the Auto Park feature. Do that by shifting the vehicle into Park and then checking that the system isn’t active.
Note: Truly, the Auto Park function can sometimes misbehave and frustrate you when it gets your Jeep stuck in PARK. Turning it off can save you from such an annoying and risky situation. Unfortunately, doing so can also put you and your passengers in danger if you accidentally leave the vehicle unsafely. Therefore, it would be best to leave the feature enabled as it can prevent an accident.
Why Would My Jeep Get Stuck in the PARK?
A Jeep can stick in the PARK for various reasons. One typical one is that it may be low on transmission fluid. That can happen if a leak occurs and go unnoticed for long enough. Your car can also fail to shift out of the park due to low voltage or a wiring problem, such as a disconnected transmission shift cable.
Why Is My Jeep Stuck in Park but the Shifter Moves?
Your Jeep can stick in the park, although the gear shifter moves if there is debris in the transmission lines causing an obstruction. The shift solenoid itself could also be faulty. Another cause of this problem may be physical damage within the transmission.
Finding yourself in the Jeep “Auto Park Engaged” situation can be extremely frustrating. That’s particularly true if you’re in a hurry and new to this mishap. Fortunately, most ‘Jeepers’ that have experienced the problem resolved it easily.
The secret is to avoid panicking or freaking out. Thus, relax and execute the above possible solutions. One will probably work and allow you to get your Jeep moving. Otherwise, contact a reliable mechanic or tow the vehicle to a dealer for an accurate diagnosis and repair.