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:
66 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
129 / 3
Average Mileage:
59,850 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 steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 34 of 56)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #443

Oct 152009


  • 62,500 miles


While I was driving on the interstate, my power steering went out on my 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. This has occurred daily since then, and becoming more frequent as the days progress. This should not be happening on my car so soon, and estimates for repair are beginning at $1,000, which is entirely too much for a single mother and full time college student to handle. This is a dangerous situation and has to be a defect as there are hundreds of reports of the same thing happening with other Cobalts. I risk losing control of my vehicle and causing injury to myself and my daughter.

- Memphis, TN, USA

problem #442

Jan 242010


  • 42,200 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. She states that while driving at 45 mph the power steering light illuminated and she lost the power steering on the vehicle. She was able to pull over where she turned the vehicle off and then on and the vehicle was fine. After a few minutes the power steering light came back on. The dealer was contacted and they stated that they will repair the failure at the owners expense. There have been no repairs for the failure. She has noticed that whenever the temperature drops or when it rains that's when she loses power steering. The failure mileage was 42200 and current mileage was 42424.

- Camp Berde, AZ, USA

problem #441

Jan 282010


  • 34,985 miles
Power steering problem on a 2006 Chevy Cobalt my power steering keeps going out and a power steering light will show up on my information screen. This has been going on since Jan 5th and I just bought the car on the 21st of Dec.

- Pflugerville, TX, USA

problem #440

Nov 202009


  • 38,000 miles


Power steering goes out after about 5 seconds of driving. No assist when this happens. Not sure how to correct. Tw*

- Ringgold, GA, USA

problem #439

Jan 282010


  • 25,000 miles
I own a 2006 Chevy Cobalt. At 25,000 miles the power steering just stop working while I'm on the highway. It was very hard to steer, but I managed to pull over to the curve and stop the car. Fortunately no one got hurt. I don't know why it happened but it sure was scary. After a few minutes I started the car again and the power steering came back on again. Before I could reach home, the power steering failed again. Obviously, there was something wrong. I called a mechanic for an estimate and they said it would cost around $1000 to 1500 including labor.

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #438

Jan 262010


  • 43,482 miles
As I am driving down the road my Chevy Cobalt will ding about three times and in the mileage window it will flash "power steering". as soon as that occurs the power steering will go out entirely. It is difficult to get the car to move to the side of the road, so there is no way to completely turn it. I almost ran into a fence trying to pull over on the side of the road. It first occured the afternoon of the 26th and the car was not driven the rest of the day, but it again happened the morning of the 27th. An appointment has been made for tomorrow to have it looked at by Chevy so there has been no correction to the problem.

- Shalimar, FL, USA

problem #437

May 172009

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,200 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. He stated that the power steering would fail intermittently. The dealer could not duplicate the failures, however the body control module was replaced at the owner's expense and still did not correct the failure. On a separate occasion, while driving at speeds of 60 mph and the vehicle locked. The contact was unable to turn the steering wheel in either direction. The power steering warning light illuminated on the warning panel and the vehicle stalled. He was able to maneuver the vehicle off of the highway without incident. The failure and current mileages were under 80,200. Updated 2/17/10 updated 02/22/10

- Dallas , TX, USA

problem #436

Jan 152010


  • 53,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that whenever he was driving various speeds including 35 mph it became difficult to turn the steering wheel. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who stated that they needed to replace the steering column for $1000. There were no recalls or warranties for the failure. The VIN was unknown. The failure mileage was 53,000.

- Mt Olive, IL, USA

problem #435

Jan 102010


  • 61,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 25 mph for 15 minutes the power steering light flashed on the dashboard and the vehicle lost power steering. The contact lost control of the vehicle briefly and had difficulty parking the vehicle. The dealer informed the contact that the entire power steering system needed to be replaced. The failure mileage was 61,000.

- Norwich, CT, USA

problem #434

Jan 222010


  • 43,395 miles
Driving getting on the freeway and then the power steering stop working I had to drive home and I don't go to work because its dangerous driving when its hard to make a turn !! and its too expensive to get it fix!!!

- Kailua, HI, USA

problem #433

Dec 102009


  • 55,500 miles


We have a 2006 Chevy Cobalt that was purchased for our children's use. My very large husband had been using it while my daughter was away at college. The power steering all of a sudden started going out while he was driving. He would turn the car off, and the power steering would return, but it would cut out again. We brought it to our mechanic who fixed it, but it is a costly repair as he was required to buy the whole steering column just for one part. I understand from information I've read that just because it's fixed doesn't mean it won't happen again!!! I hesitate to let my daughter use this car again as this is a very dangerous problem. Please don't let anyone get killed before you make Chevrolet permanently fix this problem!

- Middletown, NJ, USA

problem #432

Jan 112010


  • 79,750 miles
2006 Chevy Cobalt ls steering sticks when turning and has to be forced back to straight when coming out of a turn. This is very dangerous issue.

- East Providence, RI, USA

problem #431

Oct 312009


  • 43,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving approximately 25 to 30 mph on normal road conditions the "power steering" warning light indicator illuminated on the instrument panel. Immediately, there was a loss of power steering. The driver pulled over to the side of the road which required higher effort to turn the steering wheel. The engine was turned off including the illumination of warning light indicator. The vehicle was restarted and resumed normal operation. The identical failures occurred on a separate occasion. The vehicle has not been repaired at this time. The failure mileage was 43,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Morgantown , WV, USA

problem #430

Jan 102010

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 47,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 30 mph the power steering light flashed on the dashboard and the vehicle lost power steering and the contact briefly lost control of the vehicle. The contact drove the vehicle home and notified the manufacturer regarding the failure. The manufacturer did not want the contact to have the vehicle repaired until further notice; however, the dealer informed the contact that the power steering motor needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The contact is concerned about the safety risk since there were no related recalls. The failure mileage was 47,000. Updated 03/04/10 the power steering motor was replaced. Updated 06/15/10.

- Port St. Lucie, FL, USA

problem #429

Jan 242005


  • 66,000 miles
The contact owns 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving approximately 55 mph on the highway, the power steering light illuminated and within a second the power steering failed. He was unable to turn the steering wheel to the left or right and then he lost control of the vehicle. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. The vehicle will be repaired. He contacted the manufacturer a report was taken; however, no assistance was offered. The vehicle will be repaired. The failure and the current mileages were 66,000.

- Flatwoods , KY, USA

problem #428

Jan 102010


  • 24,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 35 mph the power steering light flashed on the dashboard and the steering wheel became difficult to turn. The contact turned the vehicle off and then restarted it to reset the power steering. The failure has occurred intermittently. The manufacturer was not informed of the failure. The contact is concerned that there are no related recalls for his year, make and model vehicle. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 24,000.

- Pasadena, TX, USA

problem #427

Jan 252010


  • 78,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 50 mph the power steering light illuminated on the dashboard and the vehicle began shaking uncontrollably. The contact was able to drive home safely without any power steering. The contact has called the manufacturer regarding this issue. The contact is concerned about the risk involved when the power steering failure occurred. The failure mileage was 78,000.

- Republic, MO, USA

problem #426

Jan 232010


  • 98,000 miles
Out of nowhere while driving down the highway "power steering" appears on my display and the power steering goes out. I was able to pull over and shut the car off. When I turned it back on the power steering was fine and then after less than 2 minutes the same thing happened. I have been searching the internet and have found several complaints about the exact same problem with Chevy Cobalts. Estimated price to fix this problem is $2000. There is now reason this shouldn't be a recall when there are so many owners that are experiencing the exact same issue. This system failure is very dangerous and something needs to be done and fast.

- Otsego, MN, USA

problem #425

Dec 212009


  • 66,983 miles
As I was going down the highway the powersteering of my car went out. I couldn't move it or turn it. Pulled to the side and turn it off and turn it on again and as soon as I put it in to drive it locked it self again.

- Ganado, TX, USA

problem #424

Jan 072010


  • 71,492 miles
Power steering light came on in vehicle and steering wheel get tight and will not turn. I was told by the dealer that this is a continuous problem with all cheverolet Cobalts....I feel that GM should be responsible for fixing this problem not the teenage daughter was driving when it went out on her car and by the grace of god she did not have an accident and got killed.

- Sparta, GA, USA

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