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1995 Town Car Shifter Won't Move

Bill -

When I start the engine and try to put it in gear, but the shifter won't move. I have to turn the key without turning on the car to get it to move. Then have to fire up in neutral. What can I do?




Luke -

This is not an uncommon problem. That system that won't allow you to shift from Park is known as " shift lock". It is operated electrically by the brake light switch under the dash and therefore your brake lights may also be inoperative. It is possible that the switch is out of adjustment, faulty or disconnected etc. and can be an easy fix in most cases. If you are repairing it yourself you will need to check that switch first with a test light and a wiring diagram. If you are not skilled in these repairs you can have it serviced by any local automotive repair shop. I would ask them first if they are familiar with this "shift lock" feature before allowing them to repair it though. As mentioned above, this problem is well known in the trade so you should make sure that the shop is capable in order to save yourself unnecessary costly diagnostic expense.