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 3 of 50)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #956

Apr 302015


  • 17,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving at approximately 35 mph, when making a right or left turn, the steering wheel was difficult to maneuver. The check engine light illuminated. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 17,000.

- Olive Branch, MS, USA

problem #955

May 132015


  • miles
3800 chadwood

- Harvey, LA, USA

problem #954

May 132015


  • 212,037 miles
I was driving and was getting close to pulling into a driveway when the dash lit up and the steering went out I had to try and back up to pull into the driveway it was very hard to do. Im scared to drive my car this happened at someone else house not mine

- Atlantic Beach, FL, USA

problem #953

Feb 022015


  • 130,000 miles


It beeps and reads power steering every time we drive it, no power steering.

- Bedford, IN, USA

problem #952

Mar 262015


  • 103,000 miles
I was stopped in line of traffic and had to move to the right slightly to get out of a firetruck's way (not in a jerking and forceful movement, but normal turning of steering wheel). When I tried to get back into the line of traffic, the steering wheel was extremely difficult to move and I heard electrical motor noises coming from behind the steering wheel. These noises continued for 10-20 seconds and then the power steering message came on the display. This now happens every time I start my car and steering has become very difficult, especially turns at slow speeds. I researched the issue, and was told on the GM hotline that my VIN did not match the recall from 2010 pertaining to the power steering. I took the car to an independent mechanic, who also called GM and was informed about the recall when inquiring about parts. He did not fix or remove any parts, but wrote a note on paper indicating I was having the same issue as that recall. I again called the GM hotline, who again told me my VIN was not covered and that GM would not include my vehicle in the recall. They advised me to take it to a dealer, who I have an appointment with on Saturday, 4/11, more than 2 weeks after the problem occurred.

- Royal Oaks, CA, USA

problem #951

Mar 262015


  • 89,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving at approximately 25 mph, the gear failed to switch and the check engine and power steering warning lights illuminated. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 89,000.

- Wayne, MI, USA

problem #950

Jan 212015

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles


2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. Attorney representing consumer writes in regards to steering wheel and brake system malfunction after recall work was done. The consumers son was driving, when suddenly the steering wheels and brakes locked up while he was trying to negotiate a curve, causing him to have an accident. At the present time, the key cannot be removed from the ignition. The consumers son was not injured, but the vehicle was totaled. The ignition lock cylinder was replaced on October 21, 2014.

- Elkin, NC, USA

problem #949

Mar 042015

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 179,797 miles
Throughout the course of my trip home the car dash kept flashing a power steering error message and the lights on the dashboard kept getting dim. The steering wheel was getting really tight, the car almost stalled out several times, and the dials fluctuated. The car also began to shake violently and I became afraid that I would not make it home. I have contacted the local Chevrolet dealership about this problem on multiple occasions and they refuse to even look at the car without charging me. The car has already been recalled twice and although I have had both recall repairs done I am still having problems. Every time I drive this car I fear for the lives of my family.

- Newport News, VA, USA

problem #948

Feb 162015


  • 24,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. After having the vehicle serviced under NHTSA campaign numbers: 14V171000 (electrical system) and 10V073000 (steering), the power steering failed and the check engine warning light illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 24,000.

- Hillsboro, OH, USA

problem #947

Jan 022012

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 119,250 miles
I have a 2005 Chevy Cobalt the tc light and power steering light comes on and the steering locks also when you turn it off two or three times the car will be ok for a couple of days and the tack gauges goes crazy while in park putting it in gear there is a clicking in the gear shifter I feel this car is unsafe to drive had it to the dealer I brought the car at and the tell me there is nothing wrong with it and send me on my way I have had it three times im scared to drive it its sad you pay alot of money for a car and they act like there don't care. This has been since the recall on the ignition witch recall I feel that GM need to look into this before someone is hurt.

- Hampton, VA, USA

problem #946

Feb 032015


  • 199,230 miles


Car was recalled in 2010 for power steering. Previous owner had it fixed. I initially reported back in January 2014 of recurring problem of losing power steering while driving. I was told it was already fixed so I would have to pay out of pocket to fix same problem as the recall. Here it is a year later and I'm still having the same problem with the power steering. The speedometer started flickering back and forth going haywire and there was a weird ticking noise in the area near the gearshift. I had to pull over on the side of the highway and was almost struck by a tractor trailer because the power steering locked up on me and I had my 3 kids in the car. I was told that I needed a new coil pack, it was replaced and it's still doing the same thing. It shakes at red lights and occasionally cuts off. I have to press the pedal to the floor to get it to accelerate which it does but very slowly, and then it just takes off like a rocket and I have no control over it. This is very dangerous!! also my car can switch gears without having to press the brake or the button in the gearshift. I can just simply push the gearshift back and forth without being in the car. While backing out of my driveway my kneecap bumped my keys and my car turned off. There needs to be another recall of the power steering because apparently the replacement parts are faulty as well. Or it could be the faulty wiring altogether in the system. These Chevy Cobalts need to be taken off of the streets and owners reimbursed for the car plus all of the trouble and near death experiences that we have to continue to experience on gms behalf. I have read several other complaints about the power steering being fixed and still have the same results as myself. How many people will have to die or another lawsuit presented before there's another recall to have these cars removed permanently off the roads?

- East Point, GA, USA

problem #945

May 192014


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving at 10 mph, the tail lights and head lamps randomly illuminated. Also, the contact stated that the steering wheel seized intermittently. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 80,000.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #944

Jan 192015


  • 24,275 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that while driving the power steering failed after the power steering light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the transmission control module needed to be replaced. The repairs were made but the problem persisted. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 24,275.

- Hillsboro , OH, USA

problem #943

Jan 212015


  • 95,500 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 30 mph, the steering wheel seized but was still able to continue to drive forward. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, where it was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 95,500.

- Newfane, NY, USA

problem #942

Sep 012005


  • 5,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving at various speeds, the steering wheel became difficult to turn. In addition, the contact stated that the doors would lock and unlock independently. As a result, the contact was unable to get into or out of the vehicle. The dealer stated that the body control module, door locks, fuses, electronic door lock mechanism, and the power steering assist motor needed to be replaced. The failure recurred. The manufacturer was notified. The failure mileage was 5,000.

- Carplake, MI, USA

problem #941

Jan 012015

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 152,860 miles
My power steering failed without warning while driving on the freeway it still assist randomly but has dead spots as you turn the wheel and is very inconsistent every time I drive the car it acts differently this makes the car even more unsafe to drive because the wheel doesn't return to center and also has easy and hard spots as you turn the wheels to steer they recalled 1 million cars of the same make for power steering loss why is mine not recalled if it is not safe to drive GM has been caught hiding problems why are people like me endangering their own lives because GM cant be honest and open about the issues with their cars I feel like im in a death trap I am still waiting on the ignition switch recall part to come in its been well over a month since the dealer said the parts would be a few weeks im just hoping I don't have a takata airbag.

- Larsen, WI, USA

problem #940

Dec 122014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 33,000 miles
The car engine would not shut off, the steering wheel would not lock, the ignition key was stuck and was unable to remove the ignition key even though the car was in "park."

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #939

Dec 202014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles
The steering wheel is automatically turning on it's own, and it is very hard to move. I'm concerned about the safety of my life. What if one day I start driving and the wheel starts turning and I crash? I'm afraid to drive my Cobalt now, and hoping it can be fixed so I won't have any crashes in the future.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #938

Dec 262014


  • miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact received a notification of NHTSA campaign number: 14V153000 (steering) however, the part to do the repair was not available. The contact stated that the manufacturer exceeded a reasonable amount of time for the recall repair. The manufacturer was not made aware of the issue. The vehicle had not experienced a failure.

- Comptche, CA, USA

problem #937

Feb 042013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 100,962 miles
After having GM replace my power steering motor in March 2013, the power steering failed again as I was driving on the freeway. Luckily I managed to maintain control of the vehicle and drive to safety. Dealership then diagnosed the problem as being the transmission control module, costing me $607 to fix. A year and 6 months later, my power steering is failing yet again. I call the dealership and they say I can drive it into the dealership as soon as possible. It seems the Chevrolet does not understand that this problem has killed people. After expressing my concern for my personal safety (as well as others on the road) the dealership said I could get it towed at my own expense. I'm sorry, this is the second time General Motors will "attempt" to fix my cars problem and it is at my expense? I beg the national highway traffic administration to have GM take these vehicles off the road and compensate owners. I am truly afraid for my safety every time I get into my car. Had I been able to afford a new one, I would have - but not everyone has that privilege. Please, too many people have already lost their lives.

- Austin, TX, USA

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