Chevrolet Cobalt Electrical Problems

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Comments

  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    arkgreen,
    Have you had a chance to take it into a GM dealer? If not, I would recommend doing so. Please keep me updated on your progress and concerns. Feel free to email me with and questions comments or concerns.
    Christina
    GM Customer Service
  • arkgreenarkgreen Member Posts: 7
    It is at the dealer right now.
  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    Please keep me posted on what the dealer does and whether it fixes the problem. The trouble I have with these bulletin boards is that people list their issues, but not if/how they get resolved. I suspect this one is very tricky. I think it may be a short in the wiring to and from the BCM, not within the BCM. I think that because of voltage fluctuations when my car acts up and the inconsistent ignition starts.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    wweissbeck,
    I apologize for your frustrations. Can you please email me with your complete contact information, VIN, current mileage, and involved dealer? I look forward to your response. Have a great weekend!
    Christina
    GM Customer Service
  • arkgreenarkgreen Member Posts: 7
    Dealer feels like replacing the BCM for $680.00 will eliminate the problem but not for sure. I may be trading this vehicle in (as is) and may not have the true solution for it. The vehicle will run fine until it gets hot and that is when it all starts acting up.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    arkgreen,

    Please keep us posted when the issue has been taken care of.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • gaming_rellikgaming_rellik Member Posts: 1
    I just want to say, I just got home after having to jump my car twice within a 10 mile drive from work. I also have a cobalt (2005), and the electrical systems have always been messing up, so after having to sit in 100+ degree weather waiting on someone to jump me.... i decided i would finally research it.

    Well, this was the first the I found and as I read I kept thinking to myself about how similar my issues are. I was thinking earlier how I didnt need to jump it last night after it cooled down, but earlier when it was hot, I also had to jump it 2 different times (so thats 4 times within 24 hours).

    I just found it ironic that my car ALSO has electrical problems but usually only when its hot out...
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    gaming_rellik,

    Have you taken your vehicle into your local dealership to be diagnosed? Please keep us posted on any information.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • cobaltss1cobaltss1 Member Posts: 3
    I am taking it in to Davis Chevrolet (Houston, Texas) tomorrow 06/02/11. I made the initial appointment for the Recall issue, but i might Bo said he would look into the electrical issues. If all else fails I will simply roll the note into another New Chevrolet vehicle
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    cobaltss1,

    Thank you for the update. Please keep me posted on any information from the dealership. I look forward to hearing from you.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    Thanks for your response. My vehicle is 2006 Cobalt LS, VIN 1G1AK55F167820802. Purchased as a insurance rebuild 2 years ago, so out of warranty. (It was side damage only). I took my vehicle to Christiansen Chevrolet, Highland, IN in Feb. '11 to replace power steering motor under recall. Made the existing electrical/trans/power steering issue worse. Took it back 2-3 weeks later at which point they diagnosed the TCM module. I knew this was the code being thrown off from the beginning (I can go to Auto Zone), so I asked them if they knew for sure that the error/communication problem was at the TCM end or at the other end with the BCM. I also asked if they were sure about the TCM because I was also getting the loss of power steering warning. They seemed confident that it was the TCM, so I agreed to pay $300 to have it replaced and reprogrammed. I'll be polite when I say that the reprogram charge is a joke. It's not like the mechanic/technician is standing over my car for 2 hours while it reprograms. Plus I'm told it is done in far less than 2 hours. This didn't fix the problem. They agreed to look at it the next Friday, so I took off early from work, only to find out they were backed up and couldn't get to it. I asked to bring it back the next day, Saturday, which they agreed, only to find out on Saturday that their "best electrical guy" wasn't in. After two hours they wanted to change out the battery (which I had replaced myself in Dec.) for $150, but couldn't tell me how that might do anything - they said they had to start somewhere. They also diagnosed that my control arm bushings had worn out (maybe from the trans jerking all the time, but probably just from age - common to Cobalts I've learned). But they wanted to charge me $650 for that. I asked the service manager and the mechanic why would I want to give them $650 to fix a problem when they couldn't fix the major issue and could only guess? I had a garage mechanic replace the bushings for $180. So I'm at the same spot as before, and like the poster I replied to, we have no real assurance that Chevy has any real idea what the problem is other than to replace very expensive computer modules. Having read a number of posts on this bulletin board and others, I know this is a known problem with Cobalts, if not with other cars with similar computer systems. What is a mystery to me is how any dealer mechanic/technician cannot have encountered "computer/electrical" issues on the same or similar vehicles and would know through their experience and intuition what the source of the problem is. Instead, they are seemingly totally slaves to the diagnostic codes. I can provide you with my direct contact info, if you can provide me your GM customer service e-mail.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    wweissbeck,

    Unfortunately, due to the fact the vehicle has a branded title I am unable to assist. If you would like to contact Customer Assistance directly the number is 1.800-222-1020 or if you would like to email, you can do this directly on the GM.com site. Click on Contact Us.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • bhauser86bhauser86 Member Posts: 1
    Hi, I own a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt LT 4 door Sedan. I purchased it in May 2009 with 29,110 miles on it. I am having issues with my speaker system and my stereo display. My stereo display flickers frequently then displays fine. My speaker system will intermittently not work in the front for about 30 minutes of time while still working in the back. At first I thought this was an issue with maybe a fuse but the speakers in the front will still occasionally work. My speaker system is the default that comes with the car. My car also has a history of electrical issues according to the carfax report when I bought it but I don't have a copy of that and don't know what the specific electrical issues were.

    Also, is this something that could possibly be covered under my GM Extended Warranty? I would like to know before taking my car to a dealership to get looked at. My warranty has been great as my remote for my car died last year and the dealership where I use to live was able to replace free of charge to me under the warranty.

    I appreciate any help as I have little knowledge when it comes to these things. Thank you in advance.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    bhauser86,

    I would encourage you to contact the dealership directly to see what is covered. Please keep me posted when the issue has been taken care of.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • arkgreenarkgreen Member Posts: 7
    BCM has finally been replaced but didn't solve all of my issues. Now they tell me it's the TCM and for another $450.00 they will change that too. A total of around $1200.00 and I will be good. They had another TCM there and plugged into my car and they said everything worked fine. So hopefully, this will all be took care of.
  • sr_mouncesr_mounce Member Posts: 1
    Driving today temp in the car registers a blistering 101 outside. So of course the ac is on and like any Cobalt I've ridden in, not the best. It starts going cold to hot to cold and hot again. 'bout half mile down the road I notice the speedometer start to ocilate between roughly 30 to 85 miles an hour. Holding the throttle steady I know we were still doing about 65. Seemingly the same time the car warns of a power steering fault. All goes away a few mins later then then the tranny starts to slip in and out of gear. We get to our destination finish getting a gallon of milk and go back to the car. Ride home windows down and NO AC. No problems. The only thing connecting all systems is power. Called our dealership they can't see me till Tuesday. They also "said" that they replaced the power steering yet did not know this due to the fact that I never had a problem so I would ride it out. So where does one go from here? Not going to pay thousands of dollars for someone to guess what the cars problems are! What happened to standing behind a product? How many problems need to be addressed before a company says hey we have a problem? Can anyone help? If so thank you in advance!
  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    As you can see from my earlier post, and those of others, that there is a problem. Unfortunately, I bought my '06 Cobalt as an insurance rebuild, so GM washes their hands of it (even though it was body damage). My major beef is that I refuse to believe that "trained" GM "Mr. Goodwrench" mechanics have to guess, rely exclusively on diagnostic codes (they replaced my TCM for $300, but it solved nothing), and they have no built up store of knowledge/experience regarding GM models (especially one like the Cobalt that has been around since '05). At $79/hr, I can't afford to pay for guesses, or install $300 parts to see if that fixes it. Surely by now they know the difference in symptoms between a bad BCM, TCM, power steering motor, or undiagnosed short. Keep me posted - I still need to fix mine (the summer heat makes it worse), and I need to know more than the mechanic.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    sr_mounce,
    If your dealer is having a hard time fixing the issue, I would recommend asking him to involve Technical Assistance. Please let me know how things go. Have a great weekend!
    Christina
    GM Customer Service
  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    I'm happy for you if that fixes everything, but $1,200 for two computer chips is a bit pricey. It's not like they have to build the parts special. Those two pieces and software are 5% of the cost of a new car. It just doesn't make sense. You can get a grease monket to do a trans for that price. And worse, it's not like installing these parts and programming them requires any skill. To me this is just a hidden GM money maker.
  • welderchickwelderchick Member Posts: 1
    i wish my car has only had one problem. everytime i turn around its something from the key being stuck in the ignition and the locks going up and down by themself to now the check engine light is on and now the car wont start.!!! dont have the money to get it fixed or even towed to get a scan done on it. just wait till your about to pay it off and it'll die on you like it died on me !
  • anitalclark1anitalclark1 Member Posts: 10
    I wish Chevy would just give us a different car. I don't even care if it's a used car. This car is a piece of junk and the transmission problem they can't find is still happening between 35-40 mph.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    anitalclark1,

    If you have had your vehicle diagnosed by a GM dealership I would encourage you to contact your agent with GM Customer Assistance.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • gm_sucks1gm_sucks1 Member Posts: 6
    I would love for someone to just take it off of my hands! bought my car with 25,000 miles in '08 it is an '06. When someone asks what is wrong with it I laugh and say you should rephrase that as to what IS working, my reply the brakes. My first trip to the dealer was for oscillating speedometer, RPM's and gas gauge. My radio was cutting out and then power steering as well along with my transmission making an audible clicking sound at rest. @ 45,840
    "Diagnosis no codes but the removed and replaced steering column due to no power steering."
    That worked until 49846 miles when everything happened again. This time there was a code of "J6360 Powertrain control Module replacement" They then removed and Replaced my ECM due to loss of communication. That lasted until 59814miles when I then took it back in for ALL the same issues AGAIN. This code again was the same as before. J6360 So they replaced the Powertrain control Module. I am not at 63,300 miles and everything is happening again. Not to mention I was told that my powertrain was covered until 80,000miles I called yesterday and was told it expired at 60,000 miles and I would have to pay $100 to bring it in and for them to look at it and diagnose it. They told me that they could only give me a loaner vehicle if it was under warranty so I tried to go up and talk to someone to figure out if I needed to make arrangements for the next day and could not be given the time of day. I'm sorry this is the 4th time I have taken this car in within 15,000 and they didn't fix it in the first place and now they are going to be rude to me like I'm a problem. When this is something that they didn't fix when it was under warranty Why is this my dime now. Gary, Service MANAGER, from Mckluskey has no respect for anyone and treats them like they are nothing more than and irritant. I've see this issue for multiple people so this has to be an actual issue!!! At this point I would happily give my car back to them if they can give me the about for my loan (which is less than kbb) and move on NEVER BUYING A CHEVY AGAIN.
    This past code was P0700 which is very general "P0700 Transmission Control System MIL Request" and for those "GM reps" the last 8 of my VIN are 67819165 If you care.
  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    I'm not mechanic, but reading these threads tells me a couple of things. Chevy/GM cannot diagnose/isolate issues with individual computer modules. They rely on the codes - so if the diagnostic program is faulty, so to will be what it finds. It appears also that once these modules are replaced, they can't be 100 reprogrammed and/or over a short time they start to malfunction because there are connections/hardware issues stored elsewhere in the system. The steering column/power steering issue was unfortunately a diversion from the main issue, because GM was very slow to recognize the need for a general recall. It took 5 years. I only throw off the TCM code, but they've replaced that. Now they have no idea what to do next other than to ask for more of my money.
  • arkgreenarkgreen Member Posts: 7
    I just today finally got my cobalt back from the dealer. $1175.00 to replace the BCM and TCM. It drove fine on the way home (about 20 miles) and I hope it stays running long enough for me to trade it in. I have been contacted by the district specialist during my business hours and haven't been able to talk to them but I will tell you now, this is a problem with the cobalt and GM should step up and claim responsibility and refund my money as well as recoup me for my time lost on my vehicle. Look at all of these post and just about every issue others have encountered, I have as well. I have had the key stuck in the ignition, replaced shifter to fix that and now replaced the BCM and the TCM. My frustration level is very high and I don't think it will go down anytime soon.
  • gm_sucks1gm_sucks1 Member Posts: 6
    Thank goodness I took it to another GM dealer yesterday, and even though mine is outside of the warranty they are covering it both the GM of the store and the DM for the area approved it and will give me a rental if I need it while they find the issue. There was a new thread put out for dealers evidently in April '11 regarding 9 connection issues between different modules some being TCM, PCM, ECM etc. However, they have tested my connections and they haven't found it there yet. -- when I took it in yesterday that manager told me at 930 AM I was already the second person that day to complain about McKluskey (another dealer) which shows you how bad they are. --- If they find something else is wrong I will post it to help others out, although I'm afraid that this is still going to lead to them still guessing. I have also contacted a lawyer because this does qualify for the Lemon Law in the state of Vermont (since I purchased it there) and the federal law - Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. Which with that act GM is responsible for all of my legal fees and I don't have to pay anything. The lawyer stated I should know something in 30 days-- by getting money and having the choice to trade in my car or keep it. But with this act it is also not labeled a lemon. If anyone would like to research it themselves --- Lemonlaw.com
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    arkgreen,
    I apologize for your frustration. Can you please send me your case number? Also, what is a good time for your agent to try to reach you? I will let them know. I look forward to your response.
    Christina
    GM Customer Service
  • e53turnere53turner Member Posts: 3
    edited June 2011
    Is the ECM warranted for 100,000 miles if it is on a 2006 Cobalt as I have been told that that is what is causing my cooling fan to run even when the engine is off>
  • anitalclark1anitalclark1 Member Posts: 10
    I just noticed this weekend mine was doing this.... Also the Transmission changing between 35-40 has just been getting worse. Why do you want to take it to the dealer when they just brush you off?
  • jlajacksonjlajackson Member Posts: 1
    I have had my 2005 Chevy Cobalt since 2006 and in this time I have needed a new fuel sensor (the car would die when I put it in reverse to back up), the key has gotten stuck in the ignition, the gear shift needed to be replaced, I had a hole in some random air valve that caused water from the AC to leak all over the passenger side floor, I needed the power steering recall fix AND NOW the dome light doesn't work, none of the display works, AC and heat don't work, and I'm positive if I were in an accident my airbags wouldn't work as well. I was told by the dealership that all of the latest drama was attributable to the BCM and a short to the AC which would cost about $1000 to fix. This seems like a lot of money and stress for a car that Chevy had the audacity to make in a basic model without power windows or locks, but I guess that's a blessing because I'd probably have problems with those as well. At this point the car still gets me from point A to B but I know that it won't be long before I need to replace it, when I do it most certainly won't be a Chevy.
  • kf101981kf101981 Member Posts: 4
    I had to replace the gear shift in my 05 for the same reason...less than 500 miles after it was out of warranty. My AC leaks all over the floor, but I was told 4 different times there was nothing they could do. What is the AC/heat piece, the BCM? I have replaced the fan and switch once and have to do it again. I have had my car since 2005...I am the only owner, and it has been a piece of crap. Transmission Pan, Oil is leaking, alternator, constant bills.
  • david244david244 Member Posts: 4
    I think it's time to file a class action lawsuit on GM
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,126
    edited June 2011
    Why? So that three years from now, you and other consumers will receive a coupon good for $500 off your next GM purchase? Because that (or something similar) is a highly likely outcome of a class action suit. The outcome of these suits, from a consumer perspective, is usually poor - you are either offered a fix for the problem(s) at no cost (for a vehicle that most people will have sold by the time the lawsuit reaches a resolution) or a coupon of some sort.

    Contrary to currently popular belief, a class action lawsuit is not usually the best way to settle consumer product complaints - at least not for the consumer. For the lawyers, yes. The consumer is generally better off working with the manufacturer (when possible) or getting their own legal counsel.

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  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    Any luck with the GM district rep? Do they recognize what the problem is?
  • arkgreenarkgreen Member Posts: 7
    They told me since I had installed an aftermarket alarm, they weren't liable for my problem. I told them the alarm was installed when I bought the car and removed back in 2008 and if this had caused this issue, then it would have happened back then. It's really funny how all of these other people who are dealing with the same issues don't have an aftermarket alarm. I have contacted my lawyer and when he gets back from vacation, we're going to deal with it then. Kinda crappy of GM to do this.
  • cavogelcavogel Member Posts: 1
    My 2009 cobalt is having issues with the auxiliary adapters/cigarette lighters. They aren't receiving power, and I know it's not the chargers that I am using in them. They used to work fine. Checked the fuses, none are blown. Anyone have any ideas how to fix this?
  • kjack906kjack906 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2010 Cobalt and it won't shut off. Had to pop the clutch and then disconnect the battery, hoping it wouldn't be stolen. Happened to be out of town, so I couldn't lock it as I didn't have my second set of keys on me. Prior to this, the wipers stopped working in a rainstorm and couldn't see a thing. Almost took out a construction sign I couldn't see. After reading the posts here, this seems to be a problem for this car. I would think a recall should be coming. Wonder how many other people have had this problem?

    BTW, my daughter has a 2006 Cobalt and had the same problem...
  • mt230mt230 Member Posts: 2
    hey i have the same problem but mine will not start either its like the whole car shut down did your do the same thing
  • mt230mt230 Member Posts: 2
    hey i have the same problem but mine will not start either its like the whole car shut down did your do the same thing
  • e53turnere53turner Member Posts: 3
    Great car(not), had to replace the fuse box as it was having problems and the MIL would not shut off and the cooling fan couldn't decide whether or not it wanted to turn off. I just hope the steering recall work that the dealer did will ot cause any problems. :lemon:
  • anitalclark1anitalclark1 Member Posts: 10
    My car has started doing this also. The hesitation between 30-40 has continually been getting worse. Why do I want to take the car in for the 15 time to be told by the dealer there is nothing wrong? Everyone else who rides in the car says it's some shifter thing in the transmission, but the dealer states there is nothing. I don't know what the ECM is, but it's probably not working either knowing this car 2007 Cobalt. Worts decision I ever made to buy this car.
  • viperj79viperj79 Member Posts: 3
    I have a 2008 Chevy Cobalt and my key is stuck in the on position in the ignition. I have to unhook the battery and take the fuse out to turn my car off. Has anyone had this issue?
  • eroessereroesser Member Posts: 1
    Had this problem. Also had the key not turn in the ignition switch to start the car (3 times for this )All four times the ignition switch and housing were replaced. Good luck!
  • beach88beach88 Member Posts: 1
    My daughter has a 2009 Chevy Cobalt that has the same problem and customer service from Chev did not want to own up to there being a problem. I have never had an ignition swith go in any vehicle we have ever owned let alone on one with only 55k miles. Chevy needs to own up to there being a problem.
  • viperj79viperj79 Member Posts: 3
    We did contact Chevy and they set an appointment for next week with a Chevy dealer. Chevy stated that if they say it is a defect then Chevy will fix it. I will let everyone know what the outcome is.
  • viperj79viperj79 Member Posts: 3
    We took her car in and Chevy paid for everything!
  • gitxsangrrlgitxsangrrl Member Posts: 1
    SAME THING HAPPENED TO ME WHEN I LEFT MY LIGHTS ON. THERE IS A TINY PLUG ON THE UNDERSIDE OF THE STEERING COLUMN. OPEN THAT AND STICK YOUR FINGER IN TO PUSH TINY BUTTON ON THE INDIDE LEFT OF THE HOLE. I FOUND THIS IN THE BOOK AFTER I FREAKED OUT.
  • wweissbeckwweissbeck Member Posts: 8
    For the last 6+ months I had been having troubles with engine warning lights, trans shifting, power steering and A/C cutting out. Replaced power steering motor under recall. Had TCM replaced per the dealer and the diagnostic codes. Didn't fix the problem and dealer was just guessing from that point. Had the ECM "flashed"/codes cleared by a garage guy who has the software. Fixed it for a week. He said if that failed, it was likely the BCM. Didn't want to pay new for BCM, but couldn't find a junked one locally. Apparently Cobalts are too new to be in most junk yards in the Chicago area! Those that admitted having the parts, refused to sell them (too many complaints about mis-matched electrical parts). So out of need to match the serial numbers on my part with what is available on Ebay/other sources, I pulled off the BCM cover - passenger side center column, black cover snaps off. While in there, I pulled the two "computer plug" connections, wiped off and reattached. Pulled the fuses across the top (which just so happened to be in this order: power steering, transmission, A/C and A/C). Wiped the contacts which seemed to have a grease feel to them. Blew out the whole thing with the air hose. Lots of dust - the car's ventilation system blows right past the back side of the BCM. It was clear someone had been in the BCM before I purchased the car used as all the spare fuses had been removed. Reattached everything and (cross your fingers), no problems for almost two months. Knock on wood, I hope this did the trick. I wanted others to know, because this was a frequent post.
  • unhappy09unhappy09 Member Posts: 1
    I am having the same problem and my car just 75,000 miles i have a 2009 Cobalt i bought it back in Feburary this year and it had 52,000 on it. Most of my miles are from the highway going to work 44 miles each way. The dealer I got it from says its becuase i have more than one key on my key ring and that is causing stress on the ignition switch. I of course think they are full of it. My father has more than 30 keys on his key ring and never had trouble like this. From what I have ready Chevy needs to own up to this being a problem. Cause these things just dont go bad like this.
  • powderkeggpowderkegg Member Posts: 22
    I would have to say that the "grease" you are talking about was there to help keep water out of the connections and prevent corrosion. You should probably get a tube and put it back on the connections before you have a problem.
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