How to permanently disable Auto Start-Stop on Ford F-150 – easy method

All Ford F-150 13th gen vehicles come standard with Auto Start-Stop feature which offers little benefit but is of great annoyance and potentially harmful to your vehicle’s battery and starter in the long run. This guide will help you permanently disable this feature on Ford F-150 without spending a dime.

Ford F-150, 13th generation (2015-2020)

So you’re tired of pressing that Auto Start-Stop button on the dashboard every time you hop in your truck? Worry no more! With this quick and easy fix, you will never have to press that button again, ever!


  1. While your vehicle is turned off, look under the steering wheel and find a white box at the top left corner with 3 connectors connected to it.
  2. Disconnect the lowest connector which is for Auto Start-Stop button.
  3. This will automatically put the system in bypass mode – disabling the Auto Start-Stop function.
Auto Start-Stop plug on white box under the steering wheel.

Note: Your dealership may not like unplugged wires and make a fuss about it – so make sure to reconnect this wire when you go back for vehicle service.

Important Safety Update: It has been pointed out in the comments section that you will need to connect the plug back in when towing a trailer, otherwise the lights will not work on the trailer.

Warning! Do not use trailer line tester to bypass Auto-Start Stop. A lot of websites and videos on Youtube have been recommending permanently plugging in trailer line tester at the back of your truck to bypass this feature. We do not recommended this method as it can be dangerous. You insert the trailer plug and the computer goes into tow mode. Shift points change, fuel economy drops a bit, trailer sway control is enabled dropping the MPG a bit more. Backup camera does not function. Rear proximity sensors are disabled. It also disables other safety features like rear cross traffic detection. So if you’re already using this method, we recommend that you unplug it right now.

Author: Nabeel K
Email: nabeel@wheelsjoint.com



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Motodocbob
Motodocbob
1 year ago

Another video that I watched said to make sure that you plug the one you disconnected back in if your going to tow a trailer, otherwise your trailer lights won’t work.

Lawrence
Lawrence
1 year ago
Reply to  Motodocbob

Totally, I tried renting a U-Haul and the lights didn’t come on. I totally forgot and ford charged me 100 buck to plug it back in.

Ed Breyer
Ed Breyer
1 year ago

Thanks for this great fix. In addition to simply disliking the feel of this feature I’ve read that at least some motors are experiencing premature wear of the timing chain sprockets due to the excessive starting. Unfortunately, for owners – it happens after the warranty is over. Similar thing happened with Honda’s VCM system which shuts down cylinders to save fuel – but has led to thousands of cylinder failures costing about $2,000 to repair. So much for saving money!

CJQ
CJQ
8 months ago
Reply to  Ed Breyer

As annoying as it is. I really doubt it’s true. Not saying you didn’t hear this, just that it’s unlikely. We like to act like we as consumers or enthusiasts of certain activities and things like cars are so smart and know so much, specifically in our 50k/yr job yet we know so much more about an F150 than the multi billion dollar company that manufacturers them.
These Co’s put billions into Engineering and R&D every single year. So I’m willing to bet everything we say we “heard that’s happening becausr” was tried, tested ten fold over. And over. And over. Before ever being included on a vehicle. Our Auto industry has been made to be a fool for the last 40yrs by Japan and even a few other Countries, so much so that our Co’s here paid these Japanese companies ungodly amounts to teach them how to reinvent the wheel their way, and even outsourcing certain aspects. So there’s no way in hell anyone’s going to say that any domestic company is doing something they know is damaging to a vehicle, but conveniently after a warranty is up. Just now? When the domestic auto industry is actually doing “ok” after decades & decades of annual decline and pathetic sales and even worse reliability. Now that they’ve began to recover somewhat in the last 10yrs, they’re going to just say F-it now?
And finally, let’s say it is true. Why would they continue to include this feature? It’s a detrimental feature, causing terrible problems, yet they won’t take it out because the “Auto-Start-Stop Federation of America” has kicked down Ford with millions of dollars on the sly to include this feature? Lmao
Conclusion: We all like to think we are so much more enlightened than the next guy. And maybe sometime we are. And maybe sometimes that multi-billion $$$ Corp gets something wrong. But in reality, the guy on the internet, or the grease monkey working on JiffyLube who changes your oil. Is wrong a millions more often. Because if you were that much better, you’d be counting your millions you made today. And if he was, he wouldn’t be working for some oil change conglomerate making 15 bucks an hour.

Desert Rat
Desert Rat
8 months ago
Reply to  CJQ

Sorry, but your thinking is simplistic and belies a gullible mind. The Auto Start/Stop feature has absolutely NOTHING to do with benefiting the owners of Ford vehicles, or the planet. It is driven by the company’s need to elevate the theoretical AVERAGE fuel efficiency of their vehicles, across their line. Even if Auto Start/Stop is a flawed gimmick (which it is), Ford is more concerned about reporting higher MPG numbers to the federal government than they are about the squawking of the few customers who see through the ruse.

Travis
Travis
1 month ago
Reply to  Ed Breyer

Ed is right, my engine timing is FUBAR after only 45,000 mostly highway miles. It’s a known issue.

Charlie
Charlie
1 year ago

On my 2018 F-150, the auto stop start turns off the engine as I step on the brake approaching a red light???…… I am going to PULL THE PLUG……..

Jack Edwards
Jack Edwards
5 months ago
Reply to  Charlie

Hi! Mine is starting to do that now. It goes dead before I even get it into park! So if I disconnect this feature will it stop permanently? I gave 48,000.00 for this

Last edited 5 months ago by Jack Edwards
Lynn
Lynn
1 year ago

Thanks for the tip. Works like charm. Easy enough to hook back up when needed.

Mark
Mark
1 year ago

Easy peezy.

Rick
Rick
1 year ago

I have a 2018 F150 5.0- this works great! One thing I haven’t heard anyone mention is when your engine turns off -is your oil goes back into the pan. So when it is constantly turning off in the city- common sense tells me this is not good in the long run.

mechanic
mechanic
10 months ago

Ridiculous that they even put this crap on the vehicle.

mechanic
mechanic
10 months ago
Reply to  mechanic

You can also order AUTO STOP ELIMINATOR.

Bob dole
Bob dole
1 year ago

Apparently it doesnt work on the 2019 f150 turbo diesel. I unpluged the cable a took it for a test drive shut me down 3 times. My question is if they refuse to let your permanatley disable it with the button for eco friendly reasons then why does the vehicle not automatically start in eco mode? if u want to use that feature u have to manually switch to it every time you start the vehicle… automatic on auto start but not on eco mode kinda dumb

DanG
DanG
1 year ago

I have a 2019 F150. My truck does not look like this under the paneling by the steering wheel.

M. Keim
M. Keim
9 months ago

I’ve got a 2017 F150 and just had to replace the starter. This tip just got implemented so thanks! Now I just need to remember to plug it back in when towing something. 🙂

Bri
Bri
8 months ago

Just inquiring, are you able to do the same to a 2018 Ford Fusion?

Phil
Phil
7 months ago

Please reply and give me the reasons why the auto stop start feature is bad for the battery and starter. I never disable mine, don’t get annoyed or bothered by this. But, would like to know what I am risking by not disabling it.

Plugger
Plugger
4 months ago

I have an under tailgate light strip, that plugs into the trailer receiver outlet.
Will unplugging that bottom plug on the white box, disable my light strip? I’m guessing that the answer is yes, unfortunately.

Anonymous
Anonymous
11 months ago

Have question about unplugging small bottom plug under dash left of brake – to deactivate Auto stop-start.

Will this effect battery charging monitoring system?

Or is it only have to do with trailer system. I do realize that needs plug back in for trailer use.

Shane Waynick
Shane Waynick
6 months ago

Just put your truck in sport mode and it will automatically bypass that feature and your truck will be faster.

Joe VanDeWiel
Joe VanDeWiel
4 months ago
Reply to  Shane Waynick

I tried the sport mode, it does turn off the auto start stop and more power too.

R. F.
R. F.
3 months ago
Reply to  Shane Waynick

That makes no sense unless once you put the transmission in “sport mode” it defaults to sport mode from then on out. If not your always having to activate it to disable something. No thanks

Eric
Eric
1 year ago

Im trying to locate this box. Anyone here have a 20 model f150 that can point me in the right direction?

Pete
Pete
1 year ago
Reply to  Eric

What about Transit T250? Where is it in that van? Anybody?

Old soldier
Old soldier
1 year ago
Reply to  Eric

It is just where the above post said it is look under then to the left side and you will see the white box with three plugs pull the lowest black plug

Chris
Chris
1 year ago
Reply to  Eric

I have a 2018 F-150 XLT and this box is not in the location shown here or in the video. Can anybody point me in the right direction?

David
David
2 years ago

Engineering Explained did a video on this in depth. Long story short, it saves more fuel than idling after about 7 seconds in most cases. As far as wear and tear on the ignition system, these engines are designed with the auto stop function in mind. However, it does add more wear and tear regardless. In my vehicle it doesn’t bother me because I’ve become used to disabling it if I need to, otherwise it does its thing. I don’t quite understand why it bothers so many people, so if you or anyone else can explain the problem with facts and not resort to personal opinions (since personal opinions are what I’ve mostly heard from those opposed to it) I’d like to hear it.

Luke
Luke
2 years ago
Reply to  David

My concerns are with response and powertrain wear. Try coming up to stopping then throw it in reverse and make a backup turn like any other normal vehicle. If you time it like a vehicle without auto start stop take a listen to that trans shift to reverse and listen to the rear end gear noise. Cant be good. I feel a lot of powertrain jarring after the starter restarts truck that surely cant be good on mounts at a minimum, or heavily or critically wearing engine/trans/rear end at a maximum. Id be referring to a 2018 Sport SE 4×4 SuperCrew with 5.0 V8 operating in 2 wheel rear drive mode. That said, Not sure I’ve enough courage to keep auto start stop enabled when 4 wheel drive is on.
 

Last edited 2 years ago by Luke
Charles Obier
Charles Obier
10 months ago
Reply to  Luke

Yes, I worry about the wear and tear on the starter as well, and running down the battery also.

M. Keim
M. Keim
9 months ago
Reply to  Charles Obier

Exactly! I just replaced my starter on a 2017 F150 XLT. Out of warranty so I had to do it myself but not too bad. Barely any clearance so getting the old out (after disconnect) and new in was the hardest part.

KC from TN
KC from TN
1 year ago
Reply to  David

My dislike of this feature stems from two instances where the autostart had kicked in as I was waiting in a turn lane. As accelerated to cross, the engine started and truck was moving but my power steering was not adequately ‘powered up’ and I nearly hit a pole on the corner. I HATE this option. The effort to save a few dollars in gas does NOT justify the safety concerns.

Farmer Jeff in TX
Farmer Jeff in TX
1 year ago
Reply to  KC from TN

KC, the same has happened to me several times. The Ford Techs say it is impossible. It is a true safety issue in my opinion.

Hot and bothered in Az
Hot and bothered in Az
1 year ago
Reply to  David

Because in Phoenix there are less than three weeks a year when I don’t mind the air conditioning being reduced or turned off at a stop light.

DanG
DanG
1 year ago

Same here in Yuma. My 2019 XLT doesn’t match the pictures above though.