Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The Cobalt was introduced to replace two of Chevy’s smaller cars, the Cavalier and Prizm. But the compact’s fresh start that Chevy was hoping for was riddled with issues, most notably widespread power steering failure.

The power steering failed so often that GM was forced to issue a recall in March, 2010. Great, but what about other problems like the key getting stuck in the ignition or all the other electrical demons this car possesses?

And, oh yes — then there’s the terribly dangerous issue where the Cobalt randomly shuts off while driving. As it turns out, that problem is related to GM’s massive 2014 recall for a dangerous ignition switch defect. A recall that eventually ballooned to 2.6 million vehicles in one of the automotive industry’s biggest scandals.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
45 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
27 / 5
Average Mileage:
62,118 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Chevrolet Cobalt steering problems

steering problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 18 of 50)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #656

Feb 232010


  • miles


The power steering on my 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt suddenly goes out. I have found that if I turn the car off and back on then the power steering will return for some period of time. I haven't had any real accident with it to date, but I can testify that the power steering does go out in Chevy Cobalts. It's pretty difficult for me to turn the steering wheel when this happens, and I'm a grown man of average strength.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #655

Sep 122008


  • miles
I have a 2005 Chevy Cobalt and I got it two years ago it had 40,500 miles when I bought it and at around 45,000 miles the power steering started having problems and it goes out and comes back numerous times and im afraid that one time it will go out while driving and when I take a turn or something it will come back and it will jerk the car it happened to me already almost causing me to hit the wall I researched the problem before and found alot of things about the same problem the results are on

- Salt Lake City, UT, USA

problem #654

Feb 252005


  • 94,000 miles
I bought a Chevy Cobalt ls for my son to drive back and forth to college. What I thought was a dependable car. My son informed me last night (2-25-10) that the power steering light came on and he had a hard time driving car. The light has not came on since incident. I took the car to a Chevrolet dealer today (2-26-10). The service tech tried to talk me out of having in hooked to a computer. She verbalized it probably won't show anything when hooked to diagnostic computer. Informed her I wanted it done anyway. When I returned home, I had a message on answering machine that power steering pump needs to be replaced. So I got on the web. Tried to locate a replacement. Apparently they can only be bought through a dealer. While looking on the web I found over 60 complaints with same problem. Just reading about 10 complaints, someone had wrecked and had pictures posted on complaint. Found a parent on U tube (that's where I got this web site) who was telling other owners to complain so that GM would have to fix steering problem. I'm not a genius, but seems like if there are this many complaints and I only started looking today on internet, that GM would have to recognize there is a problem and recall these vehicles and fix the problem. I guess enough people hadn't died or they haven't had enough bad publicity like with Toyota cars. It speaks volumes about GM if these are the factors they motivate them to change. We own 3 other GM vehicles. I plan to contact GM headquarters Monday (3-1-10), which I am sure I will be told poor me boo hoo.

- Kimball, WV, USA

problem #653

May 152009


  • 70,000 miles


About a year ago our family's 2005 Chevy Cobalt the power steering went out and went out every once in awhile. Now it is going out more frequent and goes out as soon as not even going 1/2 mile down the road. When it goes out you will hear a click and gets hard to steer nothing has been done yet to repair the problem.

- Brookwood, AL, USA

problem #652

Feb 242010


  • 42,312 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. She stated that while driving 5 mph with her foot her on the brake pedal, the vehicle accelerated on its own. She then lost all power to the vehicle including the steering which made it very difficult to control the steering wheel. She applied the emergency brake in order to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. They were unable to duplicate, diagnose or repair the failure. The failure and current mileages were 42312.

- Clifton Heights, PA, USA

problem #651

Feb 012009


  • 70,000 miles
Power steering continuously goes out on our 2005 Chevy Cobalt. It requires us to pull over, turn the car off, wait, and then restart the car before it resets itself. We have now come to the point where it goes out and no matter how many times we stop and restart the car it doesn't work. We can't afford the $1000 it's going to take to get it fixed by the dealer ship at this time. The company should be held responsible for this problem considering its a defect in the electrical system. We haven't had any problems from the car other than the power steering.

- Brookwood, AL, USA

problem #650

Jun 172008


  • 40,000 miles


I was driving my 2005 Chevy Cobalt in June 2008 and as I was making a left turn, my car dinged and the power steering went completely out. I hit the median and ran off the road barely missing another vehicle and a walk sign. I took to the dealership and was told this was a common problem, but there is no recall it was an $875 repair since my warranty had just expired 2 months prior. The car had about 40K miles on it at the time. I can't afford that repair. I'm a single mother. Now for over a year I've been driving this car with no power steering worrying about the safety of my kids and passengers and angry that nothing is being done by the auto makers. This is obviously a safety issue. The problem occurs within about 30 seconds to a minute after I begin driving. I have power steering when I first begin driving, but it always fails in the first minute.

- Middleburg, FL, USA

problem #649

Feb 202010


  • 51,432 miles
Electric power steering signal comes on when driving and it makes driving very hard to steer. It locks up and the steering of the vehicle makes it hard to turn the wheel when turning needs to be done.

- Washington, IL, USA

problem #648

Jan 102010


  • 54,000 miles
2005 Chevy Cobalt car. Power steering failure, speedometer and RPM needles jump up and down like crazy, engine stalls, when press gas and brake pedals, car jerks forwards and backwards, warning lights on dashboards go on and off. When steering wheel failure happens, very very difficult to turn the wheel, almost locked up. This happens almost every day now and it's almost undrivable. Only 55,000 miles on the car.

- Stevens Point, WI, USA

problem #647

Feb 252010


  • 66,000 miles
1) driving at a low speed 2) power steering message appeared on dashboard. Lost power steering completely. 3) restarted car.

- Edmonds, WA, USA

problem #646

Feb 242010


  • 45,000 miles


We own a 2005 Chevy Cobalt and the problem is the power steering light comes on while going down the road and the steering locks up and you can't steer the car. This is a very dangerous situation and just wandering what can be done about it. I have also heard that there have been many others with the same problem from the Cobalts, wondering why Chevy has not done anything about it? thanks

- Brilliant, AL, USA

problem #645

Jan 102010


  • 50,000 miles
2005, while driving down a paved doing about 45mph the steering went out causing my car to run into a ditch; resulting in body and mechanical damage.

- Lexington, TN, USA

problem #644

Feb 252010


  • 59,000 miles
Own a 2205 Chevy Cobalt and the power steering keep going out. Have to turn off car and then restart and sometimes this works, most times not. Very expensive to fix.

- Corpus Christi, TX, USA

problem #643

Feb 242010


  • 73,000 miles
My daughter was driving her 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt yesterday afternoon and without warning, the power steering failed. After a while, she was able to drive it again, but later that same day, the power steering failed once again. As with the other complainant, she was traveling at a low speed, thank goodness!

- Round Rock, TX, USA

problem #642

Feb 252010


  • 50,000 miles
1. normal driving conditions 2. power steering failure randomly occurs causing loss of control. 3. shutting off car and restarting allows for temporary resolution.

- Lawrence, KS, USA

problem #641

Dec 202009


  • 38,198 miles
Powersteering failure on 2005 Chevy Cobalt. Steering failed on several occasions on trip from Chicago to newmiddletown Ohio on Dec. 20,2009 while my daughter was driving home for xmas break. It was late at night 11:30 P.M. and she had to stay overnight and get it repaired.

- Newmiddletown, OH, USA

problem #640

Feb 082010


  • 69,606 miles
My 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt has power steering issues. I was driving home from a friends home on Feb. 8, 2010. The "power steering " light came on and I had very little control of my car, there was no power steering at all. I was almost rear ended on another occasion when the power steering went out while I was making a left hand turn. This is very scary to me, as I have my granddaughter with me when traveling some days.

- Danielsville, GA, USA

problem #639

Sep 012009


  • 45,000 miles
My daughter bought a 2005 Chevy Cobalt from a dealer. The vehicle had less than 45K miles when the electronic power steering would suddenly turn off without warning making it extremely difficult to drive. It has gotten progressively worse. Research shows that this is a recurring problem with this model as safety is an issue. Chevy will do nothing as there is not recall at this time. Why do we go after foreign car manufacturers and do nothing to american companies? it would cost between 1500 and 2K to repair.

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #638

Feb 122010


  • 49,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While the contact was driving 25 mph he noticed that the power steering light appeared on the dashboard, moments later the vehicle no longer had power steering. The vehicle has not been diagnosed by the dealership and there were no prior warnings. The current and failure mileages were 49000.

- Carnation, WA, USA

problem #637

Feb 242010

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 75,300 miles
I have a 2005 chevorlet Cobalt with approximately 76,000 miles. While driving the message display on the instrument panel flashes " power steering" and the car becomes very difficult to control. The steering is extremely tight. If I cycle power the problem resets but recurs almost immediately. This problem continues to happen every time the car is driven.

- Oneonta , AL, USA

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