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 2006 Cobalt continued to carry the torch first lit by the 2005 model year. To be clear, that torch is burning bright with widespread power steering issues, electrical curiosities and a dangerous ignition switch defect which led to a massive recall by GM. This isn’t a great torch to carry.

The 2006 added it’s own special flare with gas leaks due to cracks in the “return portion of the modular reservoir assembly.” A recall of 2006 Cobalts was issued to fix the problem, but only to vehicles sold in or current registered in Arizona and Nevada, leaving other owners to pay for repairs themselves.

Between this car stalling while driving, giving owners fits with power steering failure and having it be a potential tinderbox because of gas leaks, we felt we had no other option than to award it our “Avoid Like the Plague” badge.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
66,219 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.

2006 Chevrolet Cobalt fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2006 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 2 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #137

Nov 202013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 139,000 miles


Bad smell of fuel, could be attributed to known issue with fuel pump plastic housing with make and model of my car. Safety recall has been left out of Virginia for this issue. Seems to be a significant safety issue.

- Salem, VA, USA

problem #136

Sep 272013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 86,000 miles
Gas tank leak on top of tank - tank is corroded and leaking. Never received a recall notice!

- Hollywood, FL, USA

problem #135

Sep 132013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 94,623 miles
After driving the car there is an odor of gasoline in and around the car. A search for related issues on the internet identified many similar complaints for which the fuel pump fuel lines crack and pump fuel onto the top of the gas tank and then potentially drip onto the exhaust. Additionally, there appears to already be a recall in certain states, however the recall does not cover Indiana. This seems like a very dangerous wide-spread defect.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #134

Sep 112013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 71,511 miles


We received a letter (#12191), dated March 2013, regarding our 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt advising us of a safety issue we should address if it occurs. The notice stated one of the symptoms of the condition was "a noticeable fuel odor while the vehicle is being driven or after it is parked." It stated "fuel vapors, in the presence of an ignition source, could potentially cause a vehicle fire." My daughter, wife and I had started smelling gasoline every time my daughter parked in the garage. My daughter is the primary driver and she often has our 2 yr old grandson in the car with her. I did as the letter instructed and made an appointment with a Chevrolet dealership. I took the car to johnny londoff Chevrolet in florissant, mo on 9/11/13. After spending close to 3 hours waiting for the car, I went home and still smelled gasoline when I parked in the garage. I looked at the invoice to determine what they'd done, and it said no problem found. When I called the service center, the advisor/technician stated I "think" I smell gas. If that's the case, there are three of us who "think" we smell gas. Although Chevrolet sent the letter, apparently they don't want to fix the problem. If this happened to me, I can only wonder how many other customers have identified the problem and were told there was no problem? I'm extremely concerned about the safety of my daughter and grandson.

- Hazelwood, MO, USA

problem #133

Jun 262013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 100,335 miles
I started smelling gas from underneath the car and when I looked under it I noticed that there was some fuel under the car. I'm thinking its the gas tank and I can't drive the car like that because any spark can cause a fire.

- Donna, TX, USA

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problem #132

Jun 032013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles
2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. Consumer seeks reimbursement from dealership for recall repairs. The consumer stated she/he was only reimbursed partially. The dealer explained, they would not reimburse the him/her for the markup on the fuel pump. According to the dealer, their fuel pump was $217.88, where as the repair center, the consumer chose, charged $317.88.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

problem #131

Mar 202013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact received a noticed from the manufacturer which stated that the contact's vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign id number: 12V459000 (fuel system, gasoline) due to where they lived. The letter also stated that the manufacturer would repair the vehicle should the failure occur. The contact felt that all vehicles of the same year, make, and model should have been included, regardless of residency. The contact had not experienced a failure.

- Dansville , NY, USA

problem #130

Feb 222013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
Can smell fuel vapor odor from rear of vehicle. Had inspected for leak and found line cracked on top of fuel pump module. This is a fire/safety hazard and this low mileage vehicle should be covered under the safety recall 09V419000 but is not because the car is registered in a "northern" state.

- Harrison, OH, USA

problem #129

Aug 022010


  • 56,000 miles
After parking vehicle I noticed a strong gasoline odor emitting from the car. Took it to a mechanic who said it was the fuel pump leaking and it needed to be replaced. Cost me $750. I see on the internet that this is a common problem with this vehicle. I live in and bought my car new in Florida which is one of the states that is covered under the recall notice # 09V419000. I was never issued a notice by GM about this recall. The only way I did find out about it was that my sister owns a 2007 Chevy Cobalt and she received one. She also lives in and bought her car in Florida. I feel that GM should have sent me a notice and also that they should pay for the repairs I had to incur on my vehicle.

- Spring Hill, FL, USA

problem #128

Aug 222012


  • miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While parked, the contact noticed a strong gasoline fuel smell being emitted from the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to a mechanic for diagnostic testing. The technician stated that the fuel pump would have to be replaced because it was leaking fuel. There was a recall under NHTSA campaign id number: 09V419000 (fuel system, gasoline:delivery:fuel pump) that the contact referenced however, the dealer advised that the VIN was not included in the recall campaign. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 50,000.

- Selden, NY, USA

problem #127

Mar 152012


  • 90,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The vehicle was parked when the contact noticed fuel leaking from under the vehicle. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The contact referenced NHTSA recall campaign id number: 09V419000 (fuel system, gasoline, delivery fuel pump), but was advised by the dealer that the VIN was not included in the recall. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 90,000.

- Washington, WV, USA

problem #126

Oct 032011


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt ss. The contact stated that there was an offensive gasoline fuel smell from the vehicle. The contact referenced NHTSA campaign id number: 09V419000 (fuel system, gasoline:delivery:fuel pump) to the manufacturer but the VIN was not included in the recall. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 90,000 and the current mileage was 103,000.

- Rahway, NJ, USA

problem #125

Mar 012012

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles
2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. Consumer states several issues with vehicle related to recalls the consumer stated there was a smell of gasoline inside the vehicle, five sensors were bad, there was a problem with the fuel pump and fuel injection system. The RPM's jumped, when the vehicle was in cruise control mode, the cruise control would shut off for no reason. The consumer had a difficult time starting the vehicle, after she filled the tank, the vehicle would steer to the left, and there were times when the vehicle would jump out of gear.

- Ripley, WV, USA

problem #124

Feb 282012


  • 109,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt ls. The contact stated that while parked in a residential driveway, fuel leaked from the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and the manufacturer was contacted. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileages were 109,000.

- Linton, IN, USA

problem #123

Jan 022012


  • miles
I would like to file a complaint. My car is leaking gas excessively. I looked up the recall information and Chevy is only doing recalls in certain states! I drive my car correctly & now I am stuck with a car that starts correctly after trying twice, plus I'm blowing through gas way too fast! why should only certain states get their car fixed. If this problem isn't resolved I will contact the BBB and I will never buy a Chevy again. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Saint Peters, MO, USA

problem #122

Sep 082010


  • 77,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that the vehicle was leaking fuel. The contact referenced NHTSA recall campaign id number: 09V419000 (fuel system, gasoline: Delivery: Fuel pump) and took the vehicle to the dealer. The dealer advised the contact that the vehicle was not included in the recall. The vehicle was neither diagnosed nor repaired. The failure mileage was 77,000 and the current mileage was 83,000.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #121

Feb 012007


  • 126,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated the fuel gauge was defective and a providing erroneous readings. The failure occurred and the fuel gauge had been replaced four times before. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed that the fuel sensor was defective and needed to be replaced. The remedy failed to repair the problem. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure but did not offer any assistance since the vehicle was not included in any recalls. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 126,000 and the current mileage was 128,000.

- Warner Robins, GA, USA

problem #120

Dec 232011

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 72,000 miles
Smelled fuel in garage where car is kept and also inside of vehicle. Took to local shop and upon putting car onto the lift, they spotted fuel dripping from top of gas tank. Upon taking tank off and inspecting fuel pump, there was a very visible crack on the mra. The port was cracked and fuel was leaking from that area. I have kept the fuel pump. My local shop replaced fuel pump in December, but it was not until last week that my mechanic contacted me and stated that there was a possible recall. GM denied my recall request. Stated my VIN # didn't have this specific recall attached & since my car wasn't registered in AZ or nv I was eligible for any reimbursement. I have old fuel pump and pictures and a service ticket all upon request. Please review. This is too much of a coincidence.

- Aurora, CO, USA

problem #119

Dec 012011


  • miles
Fuel pump not covered in New York why?

- Fredonia, NY, USA

problem #118

Nov 252011


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While parked, the contact smelled a substantial amount of fuel inside and outside of the vehicle. There was no fuel visible on the ground. The odor would also emit throughout the vehicle when driving. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who advised that the failure could possibly be related to the fuel tank module. The contact planned to take the vehicle back to the independent mechanic for further observation and the fuel tank removal to determine the defect. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 80,000.

- Middletown , PA, USA

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