Stop/Start Unavailable Service Stop/Start System: 5 Tips To Fix The Error 

Nowadays, the stop/start unavailable issue has become a nightmare for a lot of Jeep drivers. Many complain about the service stop/start system warning light and getting warning messages like “stop/start unavailable service stop/start system.” Typically, battery-related issues, electrical issues, extreme weather conditions, or incompatible engine/cabin temperatures are the leading causes of this particular problem. 

Keep reading to learn more about the auto stop/start system and why your auto start/stop is not working. You’ll also learn how to service the stop/start system. So, what is the start/stop system in a Jeep?

stop/start unavailable service stop/start system
Jeep Message: Stop/Start Unavailable Service Stop/Start System

What Is the Start/Stop System in a Jeep?

The start/stop system in a Jeep saves fuel by automatically shutting off the engine when the Jeep stops.

When the computer senses the car is stationary, it cuts fuel and ignition to stop the engine. The system restarts the engine after releasing the brake or putting the car into gear to move forward. 

While this feature can benefit fuel savings and environmental friendliness, it may be inconvenient for some drivers, especially in heavy traffic. 

However, it can be easily turned off if desired. Sometimes, Jeep owners may encounter a start/stop warning light with an exclamation point indicating that the Jeep’s auto start/stop is not working because service for the start/stop system is unavailable. 

This typically means a malfunction or the stop/start system is not ready or disabled. 

Stop/Start Not Ready Jeep Warning
Stop/Start Not Ready Jeep Warning

It’s essential to address this issue promptly by identifying and resolving the underlying problem to ensure the proper functioning of the start/stop system. So, what does the start/stop warning light mean?

What Is the “Stop/Start Unavailable Service Stop/Start System”? – Error Explained!

If you have an error message in the instrument cluster that says – stop/start unavailable, service stop/start system – it means your start/stop system is disabled due to a problem. 

You can also see a yellow warning light in your Jeep that looks like an A with a circle and exclamation point. You may need to service the stop/start system indicator light or fix the problem causing the system to be disabled. Jeep Wrangler, Jeep Renegade, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Jeep Gladiator, Jeep Cherokee, and Jeep Compass have this issue.

It is perfectly normal to get the stop/start system indicator light warning that your stop/start system isn’t working on your Jeep when you start the car. But it goes away once the engine is warmed up or the battery is fully charged. Then, the stop/start system resumes automatically.

However, if the auto stop/start warning light continues, you may have a problem. Finding and fixing the problem is essential. 

For the system to function correctly, several requirements must be satisfied. Issues often fail to satisfy those requirements, causing the start/stop system fault. 

We’ll go over the most common problems here. So, why is your start/stop system not working?

What Causes the “Stop/Start Unavailable Service Stop/Start System” Error? What’s the Solution?

The main computer controls your stop/start system. It decides whether to make the system available after receiving data from various sensors and components. Auto start/stop with an exclamation point will appear on your Jeep if any parameters are outside the acceptable range. The ECU will tell you to service the system. If you’re wondering why your stop/start is not working, the most likely reasons for your stop/start system being unavailable are:

Battery-Related Problems:

Bad batteries can cause all sorts of problems. 

‘A’ with an exclamation mark and the stop/start unavailable Jeep Warning
‘A’ With an Exclamation Mark and the Stop/Start Unavailable Jeep Warning

If you see ‘A’ with an exclamation mark on your Jeep warning that the stop/start system is unavailable, drive until the battery is full, and the system should become available again.

  • Check the charge levels of your main and auxiliary batteries separately if you see the warning on the screen. Charge the batteries separately if they are not fully charged. Once the batteries are fully charged, the error message should go away.
  • Check the voltage. The voltage across the terminals of a fully charged battery should be between 12.5 and 12.6 volts when the engine is off. Between 13.7 and 14.5 volts, when the engine is running, the alternator recharges the battery. If something drains your batteries, disconnect them and charge them to 100% separately. After checking the voltage, wait a few hours, then recheck the voltage. A small voltage drop may occur over a few hours, but if one battery’s voltage drops noticeably more than the other, you have a bad battery. Get a digital meter if you don’t already have one; prices range from $5 to $20.
  • To find a code, connect an ODB reader and run a diagnostic. If a battery-related error code appears, changing the main or auxiliary battery will resolve the stop/start unavailable error and bring the system back online. Under the front passenger seat, next to the primary 12-volt battery, is where the auxiliary battery is located.
  • Corrosion or a loose connection to the battery terminal can cause the stop/start to be unavailable. If your battery terminals are corroded or there is any loose connection to the ground wire, the system does weird behavior sometimes.

All your confusion will resolve if you load test your batteries, which is typically free at auto parts stores. If you receive the error message even though your batteries are still relatively new, it’s possible that you initially received a faulty one. Be careful. If you know your battery is gone but do not immediately disconnect or replace it, your other battery will deplete, and you won’t be able to start your car. Then you’d have to replace two batteries instead of just one.

Electrical Issues:

A Jeep dash light resembling “A” with an exclamation point can result from several triggers. 

  • A faulty hood switch can cause this. Ensure the hood switch is working correctly. 
  • Many people have experienced strange problems due to loose or blown fuses. Make sure that each fuse is seated correctly and they are not blown. 
  • Sometimes, poor relay connection can cause this. Check to see if one of the stop/start system relays has a bad contact. 
  • Some fault codes can prevent stop/start from working when stored in the PCM. Clear all the error codes.

Weather Conditions:

The stop-start function becomes unavailable if the outside temperature is too high or too low. In that case, the battery requires too much power to run the climate control system. The comfort settings selected by the driver determine when and if this occurs. 

Sometimes, the air conditioning system is automatically reduced while the stop-start system functions. When it’s cold outside, you must give your vehicle enough time to increase the temperature. If you do, the stop-start system will turn on once the engine is adequately warmed up. Until your computer dashboard alerts you that your stop-start system is ready, you must wait while your car warms up.

Engine/Cabin Temperature:

Engine and cabin temperatures are crucial parameters for the start/stop system to be available.

  • The main computer can detect the engine’s low temperature. In this circumstance, the Stop/Start system becomes disabled because repeatedly starting the engine and shutting it down isn’t ideal. Hence, the stop/start not ready engine temperature too low error appears. You may see the stop/start unavailable and check engine light.
  • The airstream is insufficient or nonexistent when the car stops at traffic lights. So the radiator fan must cool the engine when it becomes too hot. The stop/start function becomes unavailable when the fan consumes significant current.
  • The system can become unavailable if the cabin temperature doesn’t reach or exceeds the optimal range. It is one of the requirements for the system to be operational. The system should resume function when the cabin temperature reaches the optimal range.

Other Conditions:

There are other potential causes why Jeep’s auto shut-off may not be working.

  • A potential problem could be a loose gas cap. Ensure that it is fixed in place.
  • A damaged solar sensor, the small sensor above the dashboard, can also cause a warning. Fix it to resolve the issue.
  • If the HVAC control module malfunctions, it is impossible for the system to determine whether the cabin temperature is too high or too low. The stop/start system can become unavailable. 
  • You might have a broken sensor. Replace it, and the start/stop will work. If you’ve moved the battery, the sensor can be easily broken.

You should also test the alternator’s output, the IBS, the PCR, etc., to ensure they function normally.

The Stop/Start Unavailable Warning Also Appears Because of These Parameters:

The stop/start system warning will appear if these parameters are true.

  • Open door or hood.
  • Unfastened seatbelt.
  • Heated windshield.
  • Climbing on a high slope.
  • Active parking assistant.
  • Overloaded ventilation.
  • Faulty battery sensor.
  • Faulty air mass sensor.

Read the owner’s manual or guide to learn more about your car’s stop/start system. The book should contain a ton of helpful information. 

Auto repair shops cannot read all the codes on the system. Take your Jeep to the service department, at the very least. They can read your codes right there in the bay. Contrary to what many people believe, the system is actually quite intelligent.

Jeep Grand Cherokee
Jeep Grand Cherokee: Stop/Start Unavailable Service Stop/Start System

How to Reset the Stop/Start System?

If you want to reset the stop/start system in your Jeep, you can do it by following these steps. 

  • First, open the hood to access the battery inside the engine compartment. You don’t need to manually activate the stop/start system, as it turns on automatically. 
  • To reset the system, disconnect the connector at the bottom of the battery. 
  • After disconnecting it, wait a few seconds before reconnecting the connector. 

Once the connection is successful, you can check if the system has been reset. Remember that this process may cause you to lose some settings.

Can You Drive With the Start/Stop Light Turned On?

If you see the stop/start system warning light in your Jeep, don’t be alarmed. It’s usually a temporary issue, but if it persists, you should get your vehicle checked by a qualified technician. Keep in mind that you don’t need a functioning stop/start system to drive your Jeep. There is no problem driving without it. However, it won’t be fuel-efficient or environmentally friendly. In most cases, you can still drive your car with the light on, especially if there are no unusual noises. However, ignoring the warning and not addressing the underlying problem can lead to engine damage or failure, posing safety risks on the road.

Read More:

Final Words

Every Jeep component must undergo self-checks. A code is generated if one is unsuccessful. Depending on what system failed, it will affect stop/start as a precautionary measure. Because of this, the engine won’t automatically shut off and restart.

To begin troubleshooting your problem, have your battery tested. Then check the electrical systems and, subsequently, the temperature of the engine and cabin. Also, check if all the parameters for the stop/start system to become available are okay. 

Your Jeep won’t be harmed if stop/start is unavailable, but it is a sign of an issue that exists. Make a trip to a workshop right away if the error message frequently appears.

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  1. These start/stop system are by far the most unnecessary things to put in vehicles. They don’t make the car more environmental friendly if it’s making batteries die out faster than they need to and I tend to believe the starter could go bad. This warning light is an awkward conversation when I have to tell my rental customers that are vehicle runs fine. STOP PUTTING THESE THINGS IN VEHICLES!

    1. I am having this problem in my grand Cherokee 2017 , nothing wrong with the battery , nor the main on or the auxiliary one , which one of the two do I disconnect the negative pole ?
      Thank you

  2. This function should be reversed, that is if I want start stop to be active I should push the button otherwise leave start stop inactive.

  3. I had a main battery that would not hold a charge and stop/start light came on.I went ahead and replaced both batteries but stop/start light will not go out.Went to dealer and they said drive it and light will go off.That has been a month now and light still on.I own a 2020 Jeep Wrangler JL with 29000 miles on it.

    1. I’m sorry to hear that the stop/start light is still illuminated even after replacing the batteries and following the dealer’s advice. It might be a good idea to take a few additional steps to troubleshoot the issue:

      Disconnect the negative terminal of the battery for about 15-30 minutes and then reconnect it. This can sometimes reset the vehicle’s systems and clear any lingering fault codes.

      Visit an auto parts store or use an OBD-II scanner to check for any error codes stored in your Jeep’s computer system. They will provide more specific information about the issue causing the stop/start light to stay on.

      Keep an eye on other electrical components in your car, such as the lights, radio, and power windows. If you notice any unusual behavior, there may be a larger electrical issue.

      Since your Jeep Wrangler JL is a 2020 model with relatively low mileage, it’s probably still covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Double-check your warranty coverage and reach out to the dealership again.

      1. Same happened on my compass. Start/Stop feature stopped working before warranty went out. Replacing both batteries did nothing. Dealer said its not a drivetrain function and not covered under warranty. I just want the dash light to go away.

        1. It’s frustrating to have the Stop/Start feature not work on your Compass. If you’re primarily concerned about the dashboard warning light and want it to go away, then you can disable the Stop/Start feature. Here are some steps you can consider:

          The Jeep Compass allows you to adjust vehicle settings through the infotainment system or dashboard controls. Within the “Settings” menu, you may find an option to enable or disable the Stop/Start system.

          Some vehicles have a physical button or switch to control the Stop/Start system. Check your dashboard or center console for a dedicated button with an “A” enclosed in a circle or a similar icon. Pressing this button may disable the Stop/Start system.

          There are some aftermarket devices or modules that can disable the Stop/Start system. These devices plug into the vehicle’s OBD port and can modify certain settings. However, be cautious when using aftermarket solutions, as they may void warranties or cause unintended consequences.

          Remember that while disabling the Stop/Start system might stop the warning light from appearing, it’s important to consider the reasons behind the warning.

          To troubleshoot the issue, you can start by using an OBD reader to scan for any fault codes related to the start/stop system. These codes can provide insight into the specific issue causing the system to be unavailable. You can start looking into those identified systems then.
          Also, go through the article and follow the steps detailed there.

  4. I have a 2016 Cherokee limited. Took it to local jeep dealership and they suggested I replace battery. 500 bucks later, it worked for about a month and again the message appears even after long trips. They then suggested to update the software as there was an update which cost 400. Still doesn’t work, I stopped trusting the dealership after they advised of other repairs that my new mechanic said are bogus.

    1. Thanks for sharing! Have you been able to resolve your issue? If so, what was the root cause, and what was the solution?

  5. 2020 compass – Leaving work 106deg outside, I turned on my air conditioner. Drive normally for a few feet, stop and the corner and a stop/start error message pops up and turns the car off completely while in drive the “D” on the gear was blinking. Happened twice in 1 day. Any ideas why?

    1. The stop/start unavailable service stop/start system error on your 2020 Jeep Compass can be caused by a number of things. In your case, it sounds like the high outside temperature and the use of the air conditioning may have caused the battery to drain, which led to the stop/start system not working. You can try these steps:
      Test your battery and replace it if necessary. The stop/start system relies heavily on the car’s battery. A faulty battery can cause issues. Ensure your battery is in good condition and properly charged. If not, consider replacing it.

      You mentioned turning on the air conditioner when the error occurred. If the air conditioner is running at full blast while the car is idling, it can put additional load on the engine, which might trigger the system to turn off the engine. Try running the air conditioner at a lower setting or turning it off when the car is stationary to see if that makes a difference.

      Have your alternator tested and repaired or replaced if necessary. The alternator charges the battery. A faulty alternator can cause the battery to drain, which can lead to the stop/start system not working.

      Also, go through the article to understand other possible reasons.

    2. That started to happen to me, except I did not have the air conditioner on. I am still trying to figure out what the issue is. However, my Jeep Compass is able to run fine when I turn off the start/stop option.

      1. The fact that, you’re able to drive when you turn off the start/stop system is good news. The system can malfunction for many reasons. If you go through the article, you’ll be able to find the issue, I hope. You should check your batteries and think about the conditions that must be met to enable the start/stop system. Your car may fail to meet one or more of those criteria. Good luck!

  6. 2021 Grand Cherokee L and the Start/Stop has been unavailable. It has been placing my truck in auto park when I’m in Drive at a red light. It will turn the gear shift to Park and I will have to turn off and turn back on the vehicle to get it to start… sometimes. The most recent error shows that the start/stop isn’t working because the hood isn’t closed. However the hood is closed. Happened three times in one day.

    1. First of all, check the hood switch and its wiring harness. If those things are ok, hook up an OBD scanner and see what error it throws up.
      Then, troubleshoot issues associated with the code. If no error code comes up, then you have to go through the article step by step and find the problem. Good luck!

  7. I have a 2019 Jeep Compass and my start stop light just came on today 9-21-23. I have no idea what it could be and I just purchased the car 3 months ago. Purchased it at 22,050 miles. Please help me with what it could be

    1. Don’t panic! It can be fixed. You didn’t mention what got you into this situation; it’s essential. First, I recommend you perform a soft reset and then a hard reset. The soft reset can be done through settings, and to do a hard reset, you need to unplug the negative terminal of your main battery for some time. If that doesn’t fix the light, then go through the article. The best thing to do would be to use an OBD scanner to find any error codes, as they can be a good reference point to start troubleshooting. As your car is relatively new, you may have a warranty. I suggest you talk to your dealership. The stop/start system could be better sometimes. If you don’t prefer it, you also can disable it. So don’t worry. Good luck!

  8. I have a 2019 Jeep Renegade and the Stop start has stopped working along with the shift up and down indicator. I had the battery replaced with a Varta N70 12v 70ah 760A which solved the issue for a day or two. I use the car to tow a lightweight micro caravan. The the fault codes were read but not using a specialist Jeep scanner which is apparently required for a detailed diagnosis. The cost of scanning for fault codes by a main dealer seems excessive but I may have to do that if there is no other solution.
    Any ideas?

    1. If your shift up and down indicator isn’t working, there’s a clue—it might be a blown fuse. Check the STIG fuse in the upper left corner of the underhood fuse box near the battery. It’s a 10 amp fuse labeled “STIG.” Take it out and look at the metal strip inside; if it’s broken, the fuse is blown. Also, inspect the fuse array.

      Head to an auto parts store, grab a 10 amp fuse, and swap it in. Pop the new fuse into the box, and your shift up and down indicator should kick back to life. If it doesn’t, there might be an issue with the transmission control module (TCM), as the indicator is part of it. You’ll find the TCM under the hood, next to the battery.

  9. I have a 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 3.6L My Auto Start/Stop light with a exclamation point popped up after it died on me at a red light. I came to a stop and the car turned off then I put it in park and started it right back up again and ended up with that… I just had some work done on it for other reasons (not the ESS) fuel pump changed, changed a burnt wire that lead to fuel pump and changed the battery. Don’t know what it could be now the dealer told me that here soon I was going to need to change my Fuel Pump Pressure Sensor. Could that be whats causing the auto stop/start icon to pop up? Anything helps..

    1. There’s no direct connection between the Fuel Pump Pressure Sensor and the ESS.
      You should check if there’s any fault code stored in the system. Clear the codes, and the warning should go away.

  10. I just bought a 2017 jeep cherokee latitude 4×4 I love it its been in the shop first time to replace the rear-end then again to service 4×4 system and service shifter systems still runs like crap they said the spark plugs weren’t gapped right the service start stop system is on they claim they can’t recreate it help they said I have one battery help did I get a lemon

    1. The 2017 Jeep Cherokee Latitude has one battery. If your dealership claims they can’t recreate the problem, you can take videos with your phone or have somebody take it for you when the issue occurs and then show it to your dealer.

  11. Jeep Cherokee limited 2016 – 52K miles. Stop start warning light – dealer says there are no messages stored to tell what the problem is – so they don’t know what to fix. They replaced battery and updated everything on the computer . Every day the feature will work for a while then I get the warning light – service Start Stop.

    1. If there’s no error message, then it’s problematic to solve the issue.
      The battery is not the problem. So, you should inspect your alternator.
      Check the voltage when you are driving and when you are not. If you find the voltage is below what it should be, then it’s an issue.
      Something else may be draining your battery as well. Look for those parasitic drains.
      Also, check the wiring. There may be some bad connections or corrosion.

  12. I have a 2018 jeep compass trailhawk, the auto stop/start light came on and it stopped working,light has now gone away but start/stop still isn’t working and I had both batteries tested at batteries plus. I don’t care for it and my ca seem to run fine I just don’t know if its safe

    1. If your car is running fine, then it’s safe.
      But if the start/stop isn’t working, then there may be an issue. Stay alert and notice if any other symptoms arise.

  13. I have a 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The start/stop unavailable warning message came on at about 50k miles. I replaced both the main and start/stop batteries and the start stop sensor on the battery. The warning light went away briefly and the system functioned correctly for about 2 days. Then the start stop not ready battery charging light came on and has been that way for about 19k mikes. Car runs fine except for that. I have an OBD scanner which is not showing error codes for the system. Very frustrating that so many Jeep owners are experiencing this issue with no resolution.

    1. I am sorry that you’re having this trouble. Check the voltage of your car when the engine is running and when it is not to see if the battery voltage drops.
      Also, check your alternator and wiring. Your issue might come from faulty wiring.
      Your OBD scanner can’t read all the codes. To achieve that, you must visit the dealership.

  14. Start stop hasn’t worked in a few months I am being told I need the hood switch and a new av battery for this to resolve. Is it okay to still drive my jeep till the part comes in? I have to go to TN and it would be a 9hr drive.

  15. My jeep Cherokee li.ited edition 2021 started acting up in Nov 23 with the yellow Abutton coming on and the start/stop not wanting to start back up properly at stop lights. Took to jeep dealer to work on it and they have had it since 1/3/24 and still can’t seem to fix my car?. Any suggestions? This is ridiculous!

    1. Ask for paper detailing what the dealership has done so far. Get the trouble codes and google them. You’ll get an idea.
      Then, go through the article carefully and you’ll know what exactly is the issue.

  16. 2020 Jeep Cherokee Limited (out of warranty)
    A! light is on, sometimes at a traffic light, car will shut off, drive gear (D) will flash and car will go into neutral by itself. I have to shut car off and re-start to put car into Drive, If i just leave in Drive car just revs.
    Same thing happens inside car wash. You have to put car into Neutral (N) to go thru conveyor belt. When i exit the other side and put car back into drive (D), D will flash and car stays in Neutral and just revs. I have to quickly shift into park, turn off engine and re-start car and put back into drive and hope i avoid getting hit in the rear by the car behind me.
    Batteries are good and at 14.0 volts, no excessive weather here, seat belts on, doors closed, hood closed etc

    1. Since there is a warning light, some trouble codes should be there. Read them. They’ll guide you to the exact problem.
      There may be a malfunction in the transmission system, such as a faulty sensor, solenoid, or a faulty transmission control module.
      Check for error codes, examine the transmission fluid, and inspect various components to rule out a faulty TCM.

  17. About a month ago Michigan had a stretch of below freezing weather causing my main battery to go dead and my aux battery level to get low. I took the batteries out and got both batteries tested. The main battery was bad but the aux battery was good, just low. I bought a brand new main battery and got the aux battery charged at autozone to 95%. I put both batteries in and for about a few days the auto start/stop was good. I don’t like the feature so I would turn it off if I remembered but the light wasn’t o, so I wasn’t really worried about turning it off every single time, as sometimes it wouldn’t do it anyway. Few days later the start/stop (A!) Light came on. I turned the car off and back on and the light went away. I got the battery, starter, and alternator checked at autozone and all was good. Since then I would just turn the start/stop off and the light wouldn’t pop up. Today I went to start my car and it wouldn’t start first try but dashboard and everything came on. Once I started the car the second attempt, the auto stop/start message popped up and said it needed to be reset. When I tried to turn the car off and back on the light stayed on and wouldn’t go off like once before. I got the light checked at 2 different autozones and no codes would pop up and they couldn’t clear the light because again, no codes would pop up. They said I should be fine and not to worry about it as everything looked good. I can say it was one of the colder days today in Michigan, single digit temperature and I didn’t start my car til later within the day.

    1. I think you don’t need to worry about it. It seems like your issue is related to cold temperature.
      Keeping that in mind, I would change the Aux battery first before anything else.

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