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

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 38 of 50)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #256

Jan 012009


  • 40,000 miles


I have a 2005 Chevy Cobalt and every time I drive it no matter how far at some point in that trip the power steering will cut off. At one point I had the radio on I did not realize the power steering had cut off and happened to be going around a really tight turn luckily I realized what had happened and was able to keep control of the car but if I hadn't there would have been serious consequences as that road is wooded area the last thing I would like to hit is a tree. Also in bad weather this could be seriously dangerous, if your power steering turns off and you need to maneuver quickly odds are you are not going to be able to. I drive 25 miles to work and back every day. When I get home and pull my car in the driveway its all I can do to pull it in the drive way my shoulder hurts from steering the car with no power steering many time I leave the wheels turned in the drive way because I do not have the strength to make them straight. What if a older person was driving this car do you think that they would be able to steer a car with no power steering" have any one there or at GM tried to drive a car with no powersteering?? because they can most certainly come drive mine and maybe then they might think that this deserves a recall? or if their families or children were driving this car would it warrant a recall? it doesn't matter because no one has died yet! is that really what it takes for them to correct something so serious?"

- Charles Town, WV, USA

problem #255

Jul 152009


  • 42,000 miles
I own a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt ss, at random times while driving my power steering completely dies, I have to drive the car with all the force my arms can produce, it occurs about 90% of the time I drive the car. I have found out through research that this has happened to hundreds of people with the same car.

- Ellenwood, GA, USA

problem #254

Sep 152009


  • miles
Problem started out of the blue. Traction control light comes on, power steering goes out, transmission shifts hard, clicking noise in gear shifter, gauges for speed and rpms bounce around, lights for E-brake and ABS flash, and check engine light comes on. This can occur at any time. Sometimes it is as soon as you start the car. Other times it is while I am driving. Can not predict when it is coming. Surprisingly I have not got injured driving. I have learned to muscle the car when the steering goes out. I am afraid to drive my car but have no choice sometimes. It is the only car my family fits into. I feel I am putting us all at risk every time we get in it. I have taken it in several times, the first couple times they couldn't find anything. I got it to the dealer when the problem was happening. The only thing they could find was to replace a recalled transmission valve. It did nothing for the problem. It still happens when ever and stops pretty much the same. You do have to turn the car off. It can take one time or several times turning the car on and off. No one can seem to give me any answers. I really feel this problem needs to be solved. I bought the car in 2005. First incident in fall of 2007. Replaced valve in spring of 2009.

- Grand Junction, CO, USA

problem #253

Sep 122009


  • 60,348 miles


2005 Chevy Cobalt has power steering failure. The car drives fine for the first mile then power steering warning will come on the car will no longer have power steering until the car is shut off and restarted. Occasionally the key will be difficult to remove from the steering column once the vehicle is shut off. Three time the keys were left in the car overnight due to same problem. There is also a rattle coming from the steering column at low speeds. The date I inputted is only when the power steering started to fail all other issues have been on going for the past year.

- Lutz, FL, USA

problem #252

Aug 202009


  • 79,820 miles
I own a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt and the power steering has intermitent failure.

- East Fairfield, VT, USA

problem #251

Sep 172009


  • miles
The past few days when driving my 2005 Cobalt the power steering goes completely out and I lose control of the car.

- Urbandale, IA, USA

problem #250

Apr 172009


  • 100,462 miles


I have a 2005 Chevy Cobalt. Shortly after I went over 100,000 miles, my power steering went out while on the freeway. I exited the freeway and pulled into a gas station and shut the car off. I could not find the power steering oil reservoir to check my levels. Got in my car and the power steering was just fine. Over the next week, it went out 4 to 5 times randomly. I checked the web for this problem and found that it is an inherent problem with the electric motor GM put into this vehicle (plus other models). Since it started, it goes out anywhere from once a day to 7-10 days a day. The problem is completely random. After finding out that many other Cobalt owners have the same problem, and the fact that it is a danger to operate when it suddenly goes out, I feel that GM needs to do a recall on this motor. Just because people have not died in mass numbers because of this does not mean that this problem is not dangerous.

- Sun City, CA, USA

problem #249

Sep 112009


  • 40,300 miles
The Chevrolet Cobalt has a very apparent and common issue with the power steering motor. Unlike most cars the Cobalt has an electric motor which facilitates turning the steering wheel. However the electric motor will often stop working unnecessarily. This is extremely dangerous due to the fact it can occur without warning at anytime, including while turning. I have actually been in the middle of a turn on an exit ramp and had the steering go out. Luckily I was able to regain control of the car with out crashing into the guard rail. Please address this concern before someone gets seriously hurt or killed. There should be recall on this particular issue what the Chevrolet Cobalt as it is a well know problem among Cobalt owners and GM.

- Apex, NC, USA

problem #248

Aug 152009


  • 55,000 miles
The power steering went out on my Chevy Cobalt 2005. It is a defective part.

- Fullerton, CA, USA

problem #247

Sep 142009


  • 65,000 miles
Electric power steering goes out while driving 2005 Chevy Cobalt at any speed. Happens often, have been able to pull over and turn car off and restart then power steering works again for a while. Very dangerous at high speeds(55mph) have seen many reported problem with same issue with this year and model..

- Oak Lawn, IL, USA

problem #246

Sep 102009


  • 73,000 miles


My Chevy Cobalt 2 door coupe has a problem where the electric steering just stops working while driving and it disables the traction control system and the ABS system I got it fixed which the warranty I had didn't cover for 1K and then 4 days later it happened again. I have researched this issue and found that it happens a lot with these cars and after they are fixed it keeps happening. Also when this happens the motor will not idle properly and the trans slams when shifting gears.

- Wayne, NJ, USA

problem #245

Sep 122009


  • 118,246 miles
I am driving down the freeway and the cars power steering would just go out. It was very difficult to make a turn at any speed. The only way to try to help the problem is to pull over, turn off the car. But that only helps out for a few minutes, then the powersteering will go out again. Then the process will start over again.

- El Campo, TX, USA

problem #244

Sep 112009


  • 72,000 miles
I was driving for less than a mile at about 45mph when the car's driver information screen read "power steering" and the wheel locked up and found it very difficult to steer. I was able to make it home safely. I turned the car off and then on again and the problem went away. I also have a newer car of the same model that had this issue and the steering column had to be replaced. I have filed a separate complaint with your office for this vehicle; the conformation number I was given is 10283738 for a 2007 Chevy Cobalt. I have not had my 2005 Chevy Cobalt repaired yet as I can not afford it and it's warranty has expired. When the 2007 was repaired the service advisor told me that it was a very common problem with the Cobalts and the Chevy HHR because they have electric power steering as opposed to hydraulic. I don't feel safe driving in these vehicles and I surely don't feel comfortable having my wife drive them either.

- Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #243

Sep 112009


  • 32,000 miles
For the 3rd time my 19 yr old daughter's 2005 Chevy Cobalt's power steering went out. This time she was on a busy tampa highway. I see there is no fix for this. I can have it replaced for 1,500 but that new part will wear out as well. When is someone going to recall this problem" does someone have to be hurt or worse" I see complaints all over the internet on this!

- Largo, FL, USA

problem #242

Jun 142008


  • 100,000 miles
My 2005 Chevy Cobalt power steering keeps going out. It started only doing it ever so often but now does it every time you get in the car. Right after you turn on the car and start driving it quits working. It is very hard to turn and makes it difficult to drive. If you turn off the car and turn it back on, it works but only long enough for you to drive half a block.

- Hearne, TX, USA

problem #241

Aug 292009


  • 50,200 miles
My steering wheel locks up out of the blue in the highway or anywhere, I have to shut the car down and re-start it so it can be operational again but I have been close to get into a serious accident because of this problem. It happens repeatedly without warning.

- Tolleson, AZ, USA

problem #240

Jul 102009


  • 65,000 miles
The electric power power steering on my 05 Chevy Cobalt has failed on numerous occasions, when the car is started it works and turns off shortly after aprox. 1-3 minutes. The repair cost about $1000. To replace the motor and steering column. I'm finding many reports of premature failure on the web for several GM models that use this same design.

- Saint Cloud, FL, USA

problem #239

Sep 092009


  • miles
I have always taken great care of my 2005 Chevy Cobalt. I've taken it in for regularly scheduled check-ups and oil changes. Within the last year I have experienced several things wrong with the car. Recently it was the power steering. A warning flashed on my dashboard and my power steering automatically switched off, leaving me to manually steer the car! after almost turning into another vehicle, I stopped my car, turned it off and started again. The car has been going in and out of the power steering mode for the last 48 hours. After researching the cost to repair the issue, I am furious to see that it will cost nearly $1000-$2000! I have seen thousands of complaints about the same exact issue. When will GM decide to do something about this and put a recall on the issue??

- Hilton Head Island, SC, USA

problem #238

Sep 102009


  • 63,200 miles
Power steering went out on my 2005 Chevy Cobalt while driving.

- New Prague, MN, USA

problem #237

Sep 082009


  • 50,000 miles
My 2005 Chevy Cobalt powersteering comes across my dash. Steering rough and whole car jerks like the transmission is jumping out of the car. Dangerous for consumer who put their faith in the american brand GM, rather than buying foreign. And GM want stand up and admit bad design and fix the problem for their consumers. As soon as we buy foreign they yell we are sending american jobs cross tax payers we bailed your company out bail us out with your defective design without costing us $2000.

- St.Louis, MO, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?