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 20 of 50)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #616

Jan 152010


  • 36,711 miles


2005 Chevy Cobalt power steering failure. Power steering motor failure. Car went to manual steering. Very hard to turn at lower speeds. Took in to Chevy dealer on Feb 1 and they replaced the power steering motor.

- Escondido, CA, USA

problem #615

Feb 142010


  • 62 miles
I have a 2005 Cobalt ss with 62K on it and my powersteering went out.

- Travis Afb, CA, USA

problem #614

Feb 132010


  • 35,000 miles
Frequent loss of power steering in 2005 Cobalt. Happens nearly every day without notice and at different times. Can be very dangerous if traveling at high speeds.

- Wexford, PA, USA

problem #613

Oct 042009


  • 65,000 miles


2005 Chevrolet Cobalt power steering failed while driving.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #612

Feb 162010


  • miles
My power steering continues to stop working while driving. This has just started to happen on a regular basis.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #611

Feb 052010


  • 61,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While the contact was driving 60mph he noticed that the power steering light appeared on the dashboard, moments later the power steering would no longer operate. The vehicle has not been diagnosed by the dealer and there were no prior warnings. The current and failure mileages were 61000.

- Beever, PA, USA

problem #610

Feb 162010


  • 89,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact was driving approximately 35 mph on normal road conditions. Suddenly, there was a loss of power steering. There was difficulty steering the vehicle which resulted to greater force in turning the steering wheel. The driver pulled over to the side of the road. The engine was turned off. The vehicle restarted and resumed normal operation for a short period time. The failure occurred whenever the vehicle was in operation. Currently, the vehicle is inoperative. The vehicle has not been repaired for the malfunction. The failure mileage was 89,000.

- Katy, TX, USA

problem #609

Feb 152010


  • 69,800 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 25 mph when the power steering light illuminated, the steering wheel locked which made it difficult to control the vehicle. He was able to pull over, turn the vehicle off and then on. At 300 yards the vehicles power steering locked again and the duplicate failure recurred. The dealer will be contacted to report the problem. The failure occurred every time he drives the vehicle. There have been no repairs to the whenever the vehicle was driven. The failure mileage was 69,800. The current mileage was 70,025.

- Harrisonburg, VA, USA

problem #608

Feb 182010


  • 31,000 miles
2005 Chevy Cobalt - power steering failure.

- Wheelersburg, OH, USA

problem #607

Aug 252009


  • 60,000 miles
My 2005 Chevy Cobalt 4 door sedan has been having intermittent power steering failure. While driving the power steering just cuts out and it creates a very dangerous situation. The car is extremely hard to maneuver in traffic and creates a very dangerous situation. This problem is intermittent and if you pull off the road and shut off the engine the issue corrects itself. It does not occur in cold weather and occurs more often as the outside temperature increases. Failures of steering are critical complaints and should be dealt with immediately.

- Columbia, MD, USA

problem #606

Jan 012009


  • 80,000 miles


I drive a 05 Chevy power steering keeps going is electronic so I turn the car off and crank it back up and it will come back on...may last 5 miles or 50.....had to pay 100 to run diagnostics on my car and they said it was the power steering motor....651.00.....trying to get a loan from the bank now to repair....this is very unsafe and needs to be looked in to...ive had this problem for aprox a year...

- Monroe, NC, USA

problem #605

Dec 102009


  • 61,200 miles
1.) I first heard an unusual clunking noise in the front of my 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. I took it in to the local GM dealer and was informed that I needed my front end control bushings replaced. Upon successful replacement of said parts - which solved the clunking problem - I immediately began to hear a rattling noise coming from the steering column of my vehicle upon driving over any uneven surface (gravel roads, snow/ice covered roads, etc). 2.) a couple of weeks after the replacement of the control arm bushings, the rattling noise grew worse, and I also noticed the steering pulling much harder than usual when turning at speeds of 5-15 mph. 3.) I took the vehicle back into the local GM dealer to explain the problem after I concluded some personal research of what could be causing the problem. I informed the dealer that I had been informed of a power steering failure and possible steering column problems with this particular model/year, and requested that they look into any cause that may be influencing said problem. The dealer informed me that the rattling was simply a problem inside the dashboard, and to come back later in the spring so he could take a look at it (there was a foot of snow on the ground at the time). He also said that the problem "was not that serious."

- Vermillion, SD, USA

problem #604

Feb 102010


  • 50,000 miles
Sudden intermittent loss of power steering that occur several times a week causes loss of ability to steer car effectively.

- Tarentum, PA, USA

problem #603

May 152005


  • 25,000 miles
In 2008, my 2005 Chevy Cobalt would loose the power steering at random. The only way to correct this was to turn the ignition off and restart the car. This happens everytime the car is driven and it only has approx 45,000 miles on it now.

- West Point, CA, USA

problem #602

Nov 152009


  • 70,000 miles
Vehicle lost power while making a right turn onto traffic from a gas station. Power steering went out on vehicle, making it very hard to steer. Electrical power assist unit had to be replaced as a whole. Old unit is not available.

- Pharr, TX, USA

problem #601

Feb 162010


  • 46,000 miles
2005 Chevy Cobalt 2.0. customer lost complete assist in power steering rendering vehicle unstable to drive. Vehicle intermittently illuminates dash warning for power steering, multiple times per trip. Steering gear and steering column replaced. Customer was fearful of driving, due to nearly hitting a vehicle in the next lane.

- Shelbyville, KY, USA

problem #600

Jan 222010


  • 66,000 miles
The power steering light comes on and the steering wheel is very hard to operate. The key also gets stuck in the ignition.

- Lucasville, OH, USA

problem #599

Oct 102008


  • 33,000 miles
I would start my 2005 Chevy Cobalt lt and all would seem ok, but after driving for maybe 2-3 minutes, my power steering would give out. It would usually happen when driving around the city, rarely would it happen when driving on the highway. The problem would correct itself if I would pull over and shut off my car and restart it. After several months of doing this however, my car would no longer fix itself and the power steering would stop working after driving just a few hundred feet, regardless if in the city or on the highway. I ended up having to fix the problem in the summer of 2009 by having the power steering part fixed by a local repair shop totaling more than $500.

- Kearney, MO, USA

problem #598

Jul 102009


  • 90,000 miles
The power steering goes out at least once a day. You will be just going down the road and all of a sudden it goes out. If you turn the car off it will come back, but it makes it hard to steer and control the vehicle when it does go out.

- Lake Jackson, TX, USA

problem #597

Jan 242010


  • 46,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While the contact was driving 20 mph she noticed that the power steering warning light displayed on the dashboard. However, moments later there was a loss of power steering. The vehicle was taken to the dealership in which there was a replacement of the power steering motor. There were no prior warnings. The current and failure mileages were 46,000.

- Mountpelier, OH, USA

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