My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park. Discover Why And How to Fix It Now!

My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park

An image of a Kia Carnival's gear - My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park.
My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park. Image source: Kia

If your Kia Carnival fails to go into park, you might be curious about the cause of the problem and how to resolve it.

Luckily, we have conducted research on this topic, and here’s what we discovered.

My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park


Potential causes for a Kia Carnival failing to go into park include a stretched or broken transmission cable, a blocked shifter mechanism, a faulty ignition key tumbler, or a bad transmission solenoid.

To address the issue, you can press the brake pedal, remove the shifter cover, manually move the shifter, or call a mechanic.

Promptly addressing the problem is crucial if your vehicle won’t go into park.

Keep reading for detailed information on how to resolve the issue and related topics.



Why Is My Kia Carnival Not Going Into Park?


Transmission Cable Issue:


  • Over time, your car’s transmission cable may stretch or break, leading to difficulty putting your Kia into park.
  • A stretched cable can cause shifter problems, potentially resulting in the car being in the wrong gear.
  • If the cable breaks, the shifter won’t function, and the car won’t go into park.
  • Causes of cable breakage include stretching, speed shifting, or forcefully putting the vehicle into gear.


Defective or Obstructed Shifter Mechanism:


  • Difficulty changing gears, including going into park, may indicate a faulty or obstructed shifter mechanism.
  • Small objects can obstruct the shifter channel, preventing smooth shifting.
  • Inspection and prompt repair of broken or loosened parts are essential for the Kia Carnival.


Faulty Ignition Key Tumbler:


  • Frequent use of the Kia Carnival can wear out the tumblers in the ignition key, necessitating replacement.
  • This issue may make it challenging to move the vehicle out of park or into park.
  • Difficulty turning the ignition or shifting gears could signal the need for key tumbler replacement.


Bad Transmission Solenoid:


  • The complex transmission system may experience wear and tear or damage, affecting shifting into park.
  • Transmission solenoids regulate transmission fluid flow, and failure can lead to gear-shifting problems.
  • Early diagnosis and inspection of your Kia Carnival are crucial to avoid expensive transmission repairs.


An image of a Kia Carnival - My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park.
My Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park. Image source: Wikipedia


What To Do If Kia Carnival Won’t Go Into Park?


Repairing an automobile that won’t shift into park can present a challenging and complex task.

If your Kia Carnival fails to go into park, follow these steps to resolve the problem:

Firstly, press the brake pedal.

It’s advisable to seek assistance from another person to perform this step effectively. Instruct them to firmly press down on the brake pedal.

Next, remove the shifter cover.

Disassemble the shifter cover, typically secured by screws, to access the shifter bezel cover concealing the cable. If you have trouble locating the screws, consult your owner’s handbook for guidance.

Subsequently, manually move the shifter.

After removing the shifter cover, locate the shifter cable, usually identifiable by a tab. Lift the tab and adjust the shifter to the park position. Release the tab and instruct the assisting person to release the brake.

Lastly, if the previous steps fail to resolve the issue, contact a mechanic for professional assistance in diagnosing and rectifying the problem.



Where Is The Shifter Cable Located On The Transmission?


The transmission, typically situated either on the steering column or on a console on the floor, is directly linked to the shifter.

The shift selector cable is responsible for putting the transmission into the correct gear, and drivers can discern any changes in the shift selector’s position by observing its response after being moved.

Constructed from steel, the shifter cable is encased in a plastic outer layer, serving as a protective jacket against weather elements.

Some configurations allow for adjustment of the cable to compensate for stretching during use.

Bushings, typically found at each end of the shifter cable, facilitate cable movement and dampen vibration.

In most automatic transmission vehicles, a single shifter cable connects the transmission to the shifter assembly.

Manual transmission vehicles usually feature two cables for this purpose.


How Do You Reset A Kia Carnival Transmission Control Module?


Here are the steps to reset the transmission control module of your vehicle:

  1. First, insert the key into the ignition and turn it twice without starting the engine, making sure that the dashboard lights up.
  2. Then, depress the gas pedal until you activate the car’s kick-down switch. You should hear a click. Maintain pressure on the gas pedal for 10 to 15 seconds.
  3. Next, while continuing to press the gas pedal, turn the key to the off position. Release the gas pedal and wait, avoiding any disruption to electrical components or opening the door.
  4. Finally, allow two to five minutes for the reset process to complete.


How Much Does It Cost To Fix Kia Carnival Shifter Cable?


The cost of repairing the shifter cable on your Kia Carnival depends on the underlying cause of the problem.

If the issue stems from a slack shifter linkage, you have two options: performing the repair yourself or paying a repair shop.

The cost typically ranges between $50 and $75 if you opt for the latter.

However, if the problem is due to a broken shifter cable, the replacement cost may vary.

Therefore, expect to be charged between $305 and $340 for this repair.


Frequently Asked Questions


Can You Replace A Shift Solenoid Yourself?


With the assistance of a repair manual, replacing a shift solenoid typically involves removing the transmission and valve body.

While this task can be straightforward to complete, it may not be as easy in all vehicles.

In some vehicle models, replacing a shift solenoid can be challenging and may require additional adjustments using a computer.


Why Is My Car Saying It’s Not In Park When It Is?


If you’re certain it’s in Park, attempt shifting through all the gears and then back to Park to see if that resets anything.

However, if that doesn’t help, the issue might be with the sensor that checks the transmission position, called the neutral safety switch.

This sensor can sometimes go bad or get misaligned.




In conclusion, if your Kia Carnival experiences difficulty going into park, it’s essential to promptly diagnose and address the underlying issue.

So, the potential causes include a stretched or broken transmission cable, a blocked shifter mechanism, a faulty ignition key tumbler, or a bad transmission solenoid.

To troubleshoot, you can try pressing the brake pedal, removing the shifter cover, manually moving the shifter, or seeking assistance from a mechanic if necessary.

Additionally, resetting the transmission control module or replacing the shifter cable may be required, depending on the specific problem.

It’s important to address these issues promptly to ensure the safe operation of your vehicle.

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