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Pontiac Grand Am Security Passlock Problems



  • my car will yurn over and start for about 2 seconds then it dies the security light stays on the whole time i tried leaving the key on for ten minutes and still nothing. after about a million tries it atarted then i turned it off now it won't start except for 2 seconds. my car is a 99 grand am if you can help, i woul appreciatte it..
  • I am replying to my own message here- actually, i am following up.

    I have not been stranded since I disabled passlock by cutting the yellow wire. I no longer wonder if I am going to be late getting to work because of that faulty piece of crap.
  • bward1bward1 Posts: 8
    I have Cut My Yellow Wire As Well. So Far So Good.
    Crossing My Fingers.
    Will Keep You All Updated.
  • ginkle7ginkle7 Posts: 3
    i dont get it then...i have had the same problems as everyone on here has talked about. i cut my yellow wire and still i get NOTHING. what is up with that???? :mad: :cry:
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    Perhaps your having a different problem? Maybe the root cause of your problem is not Passlock related. What were the symptoms again? Is the security light coming on?
  • hsilverhsilver Posts: 2
    I am having the same problems as everyone else. This has been ongoing for years and started about a year after I bought my 01 grand am brand new. I do the reset set for 10 minutes blah blah and late for appts./work and etc. This will make the 3rd time the reset does not work and I will have to tow it in for fixing. Does cutting the yellow wire really work ? I am ready to try anything and absolutely would like to join in the lawsuit if there is one. I called GM cust service and they were no help. All I got was the run around.
  • hsilverhsilver Posts: 2
    If anyone is filing a lawsuit be sure to let me know im all for it. They need to take responsibility for this.
  • bwegleybwegley Posts: 1
    Add me to the list for the lawsuit. I've had this problem multiple times and just now learned about the shortcut (10 min delay). I'll be trying the yellow wire thing soon also. Let's take GM down!! Ok, probably won't get that extreme...let's just get our money back.
  • virgo58virgo58 Posts: 10
    I'm in the process of trying to do just that right now. I sent a certified letter to both the dealership that I dealt with as well as the Pontiac Customer Service Rep who was suppose to help me and didn't. I stated in my letter that it was no longer about just fixing the car but I wanted to be reimbursed for all of the time and moeny that I am out. The Pontiac Customer Service Rep contacted me on Friday and told me the first step would be to get my car back in there and try to get it fixed and then we would deal with the rest. I however, don't want anything disabled on my car. I guess I just feel I shouldn't have to start disabling things and disconnecting things in order for my car to work. I want it FIXED! I'll keep you up to date but I had had enough and no one was doing anything. I guess we will see how it goes.
  • virgo58virgo58 Posts: 10
    By the way, I forgot to add that along with my certified letters, I enlcosed copies of the posting on this website so I'm quite sure Pontiac is well aware of how we all feel by now so don't let them tell you they know nothing of the problems with others. Maybe if everyone wrote to pontiac and sent copies of these posting they would get off of their duffs and actually take some action to fix these cars. I've already decide and stated to them as well that my car would either be fixed and I would be reimbursed for all of the time and money that I am out or else I would file a small claims suit against them both or either try and follow up with the class action along with all of you wonderful people. Just remember, there is always power in numbers but only if you speak up for yourself! What have we got to lose?
  • hgosinskihgosinski Posts: 22
    :mad: :cry: :confuse: Well, I must say although I am superpissed about my 02 piece of #@!% grand am, I am relieved to finally know what it is, and not have anything else replaced just to wake up the next day, to have a car that won't start again. I have been going through the same things as all of you, getting stranded, using up all my triple a tows, and having machenics look at me like i'm nuts after getting my car towed some where, and then having it start right up. Please, if the yellow wire thing works, let me know, and I am so for getting on the lawsuit list also.

  • jmb2jmb2 Posts: 2
    I too, have had the problem w/ the security light and wasn't really sure if that was the root of my problems until I found this website and everyone elses problems. We cut the yellow wire, but I am not sure if it was the right one. The car was not running when we cut it, but as soon as he cut it the light went off and the car started right away. Reading your post it says that the light should remain on though. Could we have cut the wrong wire and for whatever reason we just were lucky that the light went off when it did and it started. The car does not always do this so it may be awhile before I find out if it works. Prior to these past few days where the security light would come on when I was driving or not allow me to start it was a good 6 months that it had happened.

    All in all I want to thank you so much for this post cause even if we cut the wrong wire, we will find the real one!! And I appreciate the help you gave us!
  • debtdebt Posts: 10
    I also have a 1999 Grand Am SE and my security light started coming on about the same time yours did. There were a few days I would go out to crank my car and it would be blinking and wouldn't start. After about 5 minutes or so, it would then start. I took it by the dealership to see what the problem was. Without looking at the car, they said it was my brain box (Computer) and that it needed to be replaced about $600. I said well thank you and drove off. My brother-in-law kept saying it was the battery that was bad. So I took it by Auto Zone and sure enough it was bad. I had it replaced and the problem was solved. Until today, I started my car and the damn security light came on and stayed on. I'm in fear that it will not start. Also my service engine soon light has been on forever but the car seems to run fine. I keep a close check on the gauge to make sure it is not running hot. The reason I've been told is the cylinder 4 misfired (code 304) and P440 Emission control system malfunction. If I disconnect the negative on the battery for about 15 minutes it would go out. Not! I just recently had to have the motor replaced on the back passenger window. I too have the scratch marks on my windows where they roll up and down. Things I have replaced on my car and I bought it new. 2 batteries, alternator, 3 sets of rotors, 4 sets of brake pads, struts, strut mounts. My front wheels roar while driving down the road. My ac fan roars too plus the ac takes a long time to get cold. I've put coolant in it but to no avail. I tried to talk to GM about the piece of crap car but they were no help. Good luck to anyone with a lawsuit. If you find a cure for the passlock system please let me know.
  • tadams2tadams2 Posts: 1
    Ok, We have an 03 grand am and now are experiencing the Passlock issue. The security light will come on once in a while and it will disable the start feature of the car as well. Pontiac/GM knows of the problems as the first time, my wife called me, I had to leave work to get the car started. We down loaded the User Manual from Pontiac and low and behold its in black and white. This is how we found out about the 10 minute reset time. Now it is happening very often, almost daily the light comes on. Then it goes off by itself and may not come on for days. Just last night, going to the movies, the light was not on, but after watching the movie, the car did not start and we had to wait out the time limit. I am new to this forum and now it seems this problem has be going on for years with no apparent recalls. One of the writers mentioned changing out a connector. I would much rather do this insted of cutting wires. Any feed back on the new connector? Anyone brave enough to take this matter to court? I will if someone would help me get started... Never filed a suite before but whiling to step up.
  • debtdebt Posts: 10
    Where is the yellow wire to disconnect the passlock?
  • virgo58virgo58 Posts: 10
    Hi - as per my prior posts, my car is at the dealership as we speak at the request of the Pontiac Customer Service Rep. I have already notified them via Certified Mail that if my car isn't FIXED this time and I'm not reimbursed for all of the time and money that I'm out because of this that certainly either small claims court or a class action suit would follow. I will keep you all posted!
  • virgo58virgo58 Posts: 10
    One other thing to consider: Your car insurance company gives you a discount for having a security system and when you disable (or cut the yellow wire) your security system no longer works (in other words, now you've just screwed yourself out of your insurance discount). Something to think about.
  • hgosinskihgosinski Posts: 22
    I have taken my car to the pontiac dealership. They are replacing the theft modual in the ignition, he said this is part of the passlock system, and my starter relay. This is costing me 600.00. If it works, i'll let you all know. The guy at the Pontiac dealer seemed to know what I was talking about with the passlock system. Now, I don't know if replacing it is going to help anything, but they won't cut any wires for me, and they said they were absolutly positive this would work. we'll see... :confuse:
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    This is the Hall-Effect (magnetic) sensor on the ignition switch. I don't know what the starter relay has to do with it, unless they suspect it is also intermittent.
  • bward1bward1 Posts: 8
    How much of a discount will I be losing? A couple of dollars?? Big Deal!
    That is much better then being stuck in the middle of no where with this piece of Pontiac Junk.
    I cut my yellow wire.
    So Far So Good.
    I will eat the differnce in insurance.
    I have been stuck twice, alot of people have been stuck much more.
    Besides, if thiefs were smart they would stay away from these junk cars, Steal something worth while.
  • hgosinskihgosinski Posts: 22
    I was just wondering how long it's been for those of you that cut the yellow wire, that it's been working?? I'm kinda scared to do it, so I want to make sure it really works first. Don't know what i'm so afraid of, at this point anything would be better then what's been happening... My car is still at the pontiac dealership. They've had it almost a week now, I'm thinking that's probably not good. This sucks!!!
  • Before cutting the wire, try this. Go under the hood to the main fuse panel/panels and pull out the high amperage fuses. Look at the blades for corrosion. Since these circuits can draw a large current it would only take a resistance change of less than a 1/8 of an ohm to make a large voltage drop. I can confirm it later on, I have my wifes Monte Carlo torn appart for both a passlock and a radio problem, both seem to be worse when the car is hot (in the engine compartment, it never seemed to make a difference how hot it was inside)
  • raycorriraycorri Posts: 13
    Here is documentation of why this works. It is originally from these GM engineering documents for trucks. All Passlock I and II systems are the same. In most, it is actually easier to access the Yellow Data Wire near the Ignition. This is why we enter through the radio compartment. The "cut the wire" method is just an extreme shortcut to the addition of a "toggle switch". This is the old-old school method which pre-dates the "relay and resistor" bypass and the newer "bypass modules" made for remote starters. The latter two options will not work if you have intermittent wiring problems since they still utilize sending a code via the data wire. You have to be able to start your car at least once in order to trigger "fail-enable" mode. If your car will not start any longer, it's too late to cut the wire. and and pg A29 and A30

    rewrite of bulletin for Cars

    How to replace the Ignition Lock Cylinder by bolt 3/11/2006 w/photos.

    By the way: A dealership will never disable the Passlock for you---even if they know how. I don't think a recall will ever happen either. It has to be a safety issue. That's why they programmed "fail-enable" mode for passlock. If passlock or passlock wiring was to fail while you were driving down the road, your car will not shut down. Hence, it's not a safety issue if your car will not start.

    Enjoy the reading material!
  • bward1bward1 Posts: 8
    That is interesting, Please let us know if that works.
  • dsudeltadsudelta Posts: 5
    Just like the majority of the people in this forum, I too am having problems with my Passlock System. I was told by my mechanic (not affliated with GM) that he could reprogram the system, but I would eventualky have to replace the system. He has reprogrammed it once and one week later the problem still persists.

    Before I pay the original dealer $500 to replace, I am going to try cutting the wires. I will keep you posted if there are any problems.

    BTW, great forum. I thought I was the only one having the problem. :confuse:
  • virgo58virgo58 Posts: 10
    Just a thought - before you do that you may try contacting GM. Although my problems started when my car was still under warranty, GM is now fixing and I firmly beleive this problem should have been a recall. You might mention the postings on this site and suggest just that, that you feel your problem is due to a problem that should have been recalled and they may very well take care of it for you - THEY SHOULD!!!!
  • hgosinskihgosinski Posts: 22
    I did just that, I took my car to the pontiac dealership, and I told them about this website, and I told them I knew what it was, and I told them that they better fix it somehow, and not try telling me it was something else, and they did. They said it was the passlock system, and that they had to replece the theft modual, and also my starter relay was bad, but this was two weeks ago, and so far my car is starting all the time. Unfortunaley it coast me 600 bucks, and I think that's bull$#@!, but anyway, it works, and hopefully it will continue to work.
  • dsudeltadsudelta Posts: 5
    Unfortunately, my car is no longer under warrenty. I did however call several dealers in my area and they all quoted different prices. Prices ranged from $500 to $900. Hmmmm. Anyway, after cutting the yellow wire, I have had 15 successful starts. As mentioned by a previous post, the security light does remain on.

    Also, I was told by the mechanic at the Pontiac Dealership that even if I replace the passlock system, it could go again in as few as 200 hundred starts.

    I will stick cutting the wire for now. :D
  • ginkle7ginkle7 Posts: 3
    ok i did cut the yellow wire and nothing..that was 2 weeks ago, so i was told to get a bypass kit and install that and just bypass the passlock all together. anyone have any thoughts on that???please answer asap, gonna try in morning...

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