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Chevrolet Cobalt Electrical Problems



  • tclifftcliff Posts: 2
    My 2005 cobalt stalled out starting in July 07 every time I turned Right..not left, not straight..only right. This after owning it 6 months.. The digital indicator panel would go crazy too. Dealer put a data recorder on it for over a good cause was found. They told me to remove all the keys from my key ring and just use the iginition key by itself. BAD answer..but it has worked ok now over a year. No stalling or indicator problems. Also, sometimes radio goes LOCKED..restart fixes it.
  • tclifftcliff Posts: 2
    You're correct that the stalling problem some of us have is very dangerous. Very easy to get rear-ended while we coast along trying to re-start the car in neutral. has happened to me many times (05 cobalt). Dealer said to remove all keys from my key ring and just use the one ignition far so good (1 year now). But this problem is more widespread than I thought.
  • I purchased a 2007 Chevy Cobalt LT (Program Car) about 4 months ago. It has the Power Sunroof, Heated Seats, Leather Seats, Pioneer Stereo, Alloy Wheels, etc. About 3 days after I got the car the moulding around the power switch for the sunroof fell out of the ceiling along with the switch itself. I have now brought the car back 3 times to have this fixed and it is still not fixed. It lasts about 3 days and then falls apart. I have called Chevrolet and they don’t really seem to care that I have to keep taking it back to the dealer over and over. They are making me bring it back to the same dealer because it started happening while it was still under warranty. Does anyone have any suggestions on how I can go about getting this resolved for good? Also, does anyone know what the package this car has is called?

    Thank you to all who reply…
  • i dont know if you got this problem fixed yet or not. but what you should o bc the battery is in the trunk is just ground on the battery and run the remote turn on wire off the battery as well not a fuse. then put a toggle switch on that line somewhere that you can reach easy. then just flip that switch to shut down the amp.
  • We recently got a 2005 Cobalt sedan(Chev. certified used car) for daughter. It has about 45,000 miles. She was driving to school and the panel lit up with TC warning light(enhanced traction system) and Check engine light. Alert bells were sounding, and she lost power steering, and the car wanted to speed up and then slow down without giving it any gas.. Down below the shifter panel(automatic transmission) there were clicking noises through all the gears, even though it was in drive. She managed to get it pulled over on the side of the road and I had a tow truck come and take it to the dealer we got it from in July. If my daughter had been passing another car when that happened, she could of been killed. As of today, and the dealer has had the car for two days they do not have a clue what is wrong with it. Anyone had the same experience . I done told them if the problems cannot be fixed they can ship the car back to Chevolet, the death trap is not coming home with me.
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    I haven't heard anything about the traction control error but there have been some cars including Toyota with the electric steering that have had issues such as you describe. I have only heard about this with the early model Cobalts.
  • Do you know what year they started making Cobalts? Since our car was a 3 year lease before we bought it and I made a copy of the first title for reasons of getting ahold of original owners, to check to see what repairs they had done. I have yet to locate them, and was wondering, since it was a lease, if a person could check through GM or Chevolet to see if any background there on same problems before we got it.? Thanks for any info.
  • kuhlkuhl Posts: 5
    As the owner of a 2005 cobalt, I can tell you that these problems are all very similar to what I have experienced. The lights will go completely out when turn signal, brights or reg beam are switched to, stereo will unlock if you can leave it sit for at least an hour, running but not moving, the pin in the shifter is likely to dislodge, leaving you to be unable to take your key out, and there is a throttle relay valve on the engine that burns up quickly, leaving your car without proper circulation of gas, oil and power steering fluid. I have now had to replace my engine with a newer 2007 engine, the shifter column is still all taken apart, and am hoping the engine will solve the electrical problems as well, altho the chances of this are only so so. This was the first car I ever paid for in full, and it is a mess! I have become much stronger in walking the mile and 1/2 to work each way!
  • kuhlkuhl Posts: 5
    The only solution is to keep a set of entry buttons or keys in your pocket at all times! one set for the car, one set in your pocket, this way, you can start the car on early mornings and then not have to stand out and freeze until "it decides" to unlock and let you back in. Sounds crazy but this car is a trip!
  • kuhlkuhl Posts: 5
    This problem is the throttle relay valve on the engine. While you are not getting gas, neither is your engine getting it's needed oil (or power steering fluid!). Take it from a new engine buyer!
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    It came out in 2004 as a 2005 model.
  • Finally got the problem fixed. BTW this is an '05 Cobalt with about 66k miles...but the stalling problem has been around almost since I bought it. Other symptoms. Occasionally when vehicle is started the windshield wipers come on very slowly and can't be turned off...and the rear defrost is turned on and won't turn off.

    I tried everything at the dealer from a lengthy typed summary of the symptoms and what I was doing at the time to offering to show the mechanic videos of the malfunction. With just a couple-thousand miles left on the extended warranty it finally misbehaved for a service tech. I asked if he had time to hook up equipment to see what the problem was and was told no....they just figured it was the "Body Control Module." It was replaced and all has been good for a bit over 1000 miles.

    This is the same diagnosis my wife got at a small Chevy dealership somewhere in the middle of Arkansas (they didn't see it happen...they just analyzed the symptoms). But they didn't have the part any my wife didn't have time to spend a day there waiting for it. Even with a diagnosis in hand nobody else would listen.

    Kind of upsetting that all the mechanic had to do was see it happen in person when I offered a video showing the same thing. I was under the impression they had to both see it happen and hook up some analysis equipment.
  • Yes! I have an 06 Cobalt and this same thing keeps happening to me with my two-year old in the car! Warning lights and random things are displayed, gauges shut off, and the car speeds up and wont stop easily. My gauges also click while this is happening. Please let me know if you ever found out what was wrong and how much to repair.
  • In my case it was the "Body Control Module." This was diagnosed by a mechanic in a small Chevy Dealer in Arkansas...but they didn't have the part and my wife didn't have time to wait. No other service people would listen to me (or to him.) I even had a movie on my cell phone of the car stalling out. They would not replace it until it happened to them. If yours is like mine it will take a long time for that to happen.

    My daughter has an '08 HHR (same chassis..bigger engine) and has not had any mechanical problems at all through 10-months/15k miles
  • Hi, My 06 Cobalt started with the radio at 15K miles, then gas tank at 17K, it was in the dealers for repairs 7 times, 4 times with it completely shutting down on me on a major parkway here in Pittsburgh PA, summer and winter.
    Unfortunately I didn't realize it was a lemon at first, I only had the car for 1 year.
    I couldn't take condescending comments from the service mgr at dealer and luckily called Lemon Law attornies that did help me get some money out of GM.

    I knew someone that worked at the Lordstown Ohio GM plant that made the Cobalt, and he told me that the 05 and 06 had alot of electrical issues.
    This is so terrible what is going on. I told that clown at the dealer before all this GM bankruptcy stuff, that he should be grateful that I bought a GM car. He still had the attitude and refused to admit this car was a devil. I showed him this website a year ago when I still had the stupid car and he laughed at me! Hysterical woman he said....I'm lucky to be alive.
    Funny, the Lemon Law attorney settled for me with GM in only 3 weeks but I still lost money on trade since I only had for 1 year. Unbelievable.
    GM knew there were problems with 05 and 06 Cobalts. Govt isn't bailing us out for GM's failures....
  • They had replaced the Body Control Module the first visit and it was acting up in 3 days , and the second time the Chevolet service bay manager did some research and they replaced the ignition switch and knock on wood, it has not given her any problems for a few months. Their service manager did let it slip his wife had a 2006 Cobalt and the more he talked, the more issues he had with their Cobalt. They do not want to hear about what you had found out on Edmunds Car Space, they do not go there. The ignition switch was covered under warrantly and it seemed the price with labor was less 75.00. I do like the Cobalt.It rides so much better than my Malibu and I love the heated seat.
  • Hi, I printed out all my pages of the website last year regarding 05 and 06 Cobalts as part of my Lemon Law lawsuit, the attorney told me that GM "paid attention" to Edmunds. com with all my service calls attached. So I disagree with that they don't pay attention, they just don't want to admit it to the consumers that they sell a bad product. I loved my cobalt too but then when I was almost killed in it on an icey highway, i hated it. I guess every state varies with Lemon Law attorneys but I did not have to pay a dime, I had a great paper trail, taking off from work, arguing with service manager and my paperwork so it did help.
    Please don't make a judgement until you research your rights with the Lemon Law in your state. made a big impact for me, per my atttorney.
  • bzinkcbzinkc Posts: 1
    My son just purchased a 2005 Cobalt. He drove it to work the first day he had it (yesterday) and when he was getting out of the car, the key was stuck in the ignition. He just left it in there, and when he got off work he got in his car to head home, and the dang thing wouldn't start. It is at the dealership as I am writing this. The dealership is telling us that the modules may be burned.(?) Anyone care to ballpark the cost of fixing that?
  • I hope the Cobalt came with the month bumper to bumper warranty. I had trouble with lights coming on in the dash(see one of my other posts) and they was replacing a speed control valve and it doing the same thing, they replaced the ignition switch, which was considered faulty. I bought this car a certified preowned car and it was covered by warranty, but the parts and labor on car was about $70.00.So far, knock on wood and God look after and protect my daughter in her car, nothing has happened since. Tammy
  • Hello friends. I have been having problems with my car too. I am not under warranty and can not afford to take my car to the shop every time this happens (car shuts down.) I have found the U.S Department of Transportation's website for Defects and Recalls. You can file a complaint in less than two minutes. Hopefully, if there are enough complaints, we might see some action and less people will be put in danger with these faulty cars. Please go this site to file a complaint on the electric issues with the Cobalt:
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    What is your electrical issue that needs a recall?
  • My car was shutting off in the middle of driving. The engine would still run but it would jump like I was poorly shifing a manual (my car is an automatic.) My car's gauges would shut off and the display would read "Low Fuel" and "Power Steering." This was happening several times a day and then my car was starting to not start in the mornings. I have taken it to my wonderful mechanic and had the ignition switch replaced. No problems since but very hard to diagnose.
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    Yes, that sounds like a recall safety issue.
  • I have an 2005 cobalt. the key broke off in the ignition and it has been removed, but the car want start. Is there a safety device or a way to reset the switch or device?
  • Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but I think you will have to get the ignition switch replaced. I had mine done about a week ago. It only cost $120 for part and labor. Unfortunately for me, my car still shuts off when driving.
  • denise70denise70 Posts: 2
    Hello cmtracy, I am having the same problems with my 06 Cobalt. When I back up, the car shuts off, when i stop in traffic, and if I press on the brakes too hard the car will shut off. I am lucky it cranks back up. A guy that work with my mom, he has an 06 Cobalt and his car is doing the same thing. My sister have an 06 and her key keep getting stuck in the ignition and just the other day her engine light came on but went off. What is there for us to do? Do we need to file a class action against GM?
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    Have you spoke with your dealers service department? The ignition issue is a known issue for the first few years. Your ignition switch probably needs to be replaced. Also, don't hang a lot of keys on your ignition key because the weight will mess things up.
  • denise70denise70 Posts: 2
    Yes, I have spoken to my service department at both dealerships and they claim that they have not heard of these problems with the cobalts. Now this is too many people having the same problems with these cars. What can we do? I think we need to file a class action against GM. They already are doing bad, so the least they can do is satisfy their customers. :)
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    If two dealerships are unaware of the issue then I would call the number for GM in your owners manual. They should offer some kind of guidence.
  • cmtracycmtracy Posts: 8
    Hi Denise 70, This is so unfortunate that all of us had major problems with these cars. I am lucky to be alive considering it stalled on me on a major highway.
    The dealer was no help. Of course the service manager claimed GM doesn't care what Edmunds website states.
    I asked the Lemon Law attorney in PA who helped me reach a settlement.
    GM did not want to help me out. I couldn't even reach a person that spoke English.
    They first offered me after many calls, free tire rotation and oil change for 1 year.
    Big deal, if the car is a death trap, that wouldn't help me.

    I really believe that the 06 cobalt had problems along with the trailblazer, I saw a local story here in Pittsburgh about Chevy with most Lemon law complaints.
    I don't think class action will have any weight since they are in dire straits.

    This car cost me so much stress and money, I got rid of it but have the negative equity for years. I was too scared to drive it anymore.
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