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.

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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
63,500 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 HHR body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2006 Chevrolet HHR Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #27

Nov 012011


  • miles


About 6 months ago the inside driver side door handle broke off so we cannot exit the car without lowering the window and reaching out side of car and opening it with the outside handle. About 1 month ago the inside passenger door handle broke off in the same way there have been times when I stop the car, take my keys from the ignition and then realize I cannot open my door, so have to reinsert my key to turn the car on enough to allow for the power windows to go down, so I can reach out and open my door from the outside of the car. There have been a few occasions that I have rolled my window back up and locked and exited my car forgetting that I had put my keys back in to power the windows, when I return my keys are locked in my car and the battery is dead....this is very frustrating! and this happened this morning with the exception that the front door didn't lock. I got inside shut the door, realized that once again I had left my keys inside( because of having to reinsert to roll the window down to get out) began to start my car and the battery was dead so I could not open the door by rolling the window down, nor unlock the back doors because the locks did not work due to the battery being drained! so this is not a mere inconvenience anymore it is a serious safety issue!imagine being trapped in your car! please help us because we are being told there is no recall on this even though there are many reports on the internet, and there is a safety recall on a latch of a compartment on the dash, which is nothing compared to this issue...the cost of repair is completely un- reachable for us also...this should be fixed at the cost of the car manufacturer...our car is less than 6 years old and wear and tear might be the case if it was 1 handle not both!! thank you!

- Fort Mohave, AZ, USA

problem #26

Nov 112011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 32,900 miles
This is the second time in two years and 7 months that the door handle (inside driverside front) has broken. The door handle is made of some type plastic. This is not only a expensive to replace at the dealer, it is also a safety hazard in getting out of the vehicle if there were an accident.

- Richmond, VA, USA

problem #25

Feb 022010


  • miles
I have a 2006 HHR and the plastic door handle on the driver's side has broken off. I have to leave my car running, roll the window down, stick my hand out of the window, open the door from the outside, roll my window back up and then kill the motor. I, too, was told it would cost $400 to replace the door panel. This is a total ripoff!!!!!!!!!!!. GM/Chevrolet or whoever manufactured this car should be ashamed for putting in a cheap piece of plastic. There should be another way to fix this without putting out $400/$500 for a broken piece of plastic! and that probably does not include tax and labor!

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #24

Aug 182011


  • 113,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that when driving approximately 5 to 10 mph, the driver sidedoor would sporadically open. The door was closed but later, the contact was unable O re-open the door from the interior or exterior of the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to a dealer and they advised him that there was a piece of plastic inside the panel that needed to be replaced. The vehicle has not been repaired. The manufacturer has not been contacted. The failure and current mileages were approximately 113,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Hampton, GA, USA

problem #23

Mar 072011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 76,089 miles
Driver side internal door handle broke off leaving the door inoperable unless the electric window is opened and the hand put over the door and opened on the outside of the car. This is also a hazard because if the car battery is dead then how do you get out of the car?

- Springfield, MA, USA

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problem #22

Jun 082011


  • 25,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that while attempting to exit the vehicle, the handle fractured, making it impossible for the contact to exit the vehicle from the driver side. The dealer diagnosed that the door panel would need replacing. The vehicle was not repaired and the manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 25,000.

- York, PA, USA

problem #21

Oct 242010


  • miles


Inside driver side handle broke off, unable to open door from the inside the electronic window must be opened and door opened from the outside.

- Springfield, MA, USA

problem #20

May 242011

HHR 4-cyl

  • miles
Inside driver door handle, broken off, have to roll down window to open door or cross over to passanger seat to get out.

- Fairfield, CA, USA

problem #19

May 152011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 16,000 miles
Inside door handle on my 2006 Chevrolet HHR broke off when I opened the door. This creates a safety issue for the driver as the door cannot be opened from the inside without lowering the left front window and opening with the outside handle. If the electrical system is damaged then the window will not open. The driver would then need to crawl over the center console to the right door or the front seat to exit the cars rear door. In a collision or fire the driver may be injured, panicked or confused and not be able to exit the vehicle. The plastic handle should be replaced with a more substantial metal one.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #18

Jan 102011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 56,663 miles
The interior door handles on the 2006 Chevrolet HHR fell off. The only way to fix it is to replace the entire door panel just for the cheap plastic handle for approximately $500. If I was in an accident and the car would not start again, I could not get out of the car through the driver's side because I would not be able to roll down the window to open the door from the outside. Or if the car were on fire, I simply would not be able to escape. This needs to be a recall item as this is a huge safety factor. A bigger safety factor that the latch on the pop up middle console on the Chevy HHR that was recalled back in 2008 (I think). There are blogs all over the internet of people like me who are experiencing the same problem. I am a single working girl who simply cannot afford a $500 interior door panel replacement for a cheap plastic handle because this is not reasonable. I tried to get Chevy to replace it and they simply said they would give me a $40 discount. That is ridiculous!!! I bought the car be cause it was economical and not one thing about this replacement sounds economical. This is a safety hazard and could lead to a death.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #17

Dec 302010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that the door panel interior was interfering with the opening of the door. She also mentioned that she would have to wind down the window in order to open it from the outside. The vehicle was inspected by a dealer who informed the contact that she needed to replace the interior driver side door panel. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 80,000. Updated 3/7/11 the consumer stated he/she was unable to open the door, unless he stuck his hand out the window to open it from the outside. Updated 03/14/11

- Springfield, MA, USA

problem #16

Nov 252010


  • 69,000 miles
I own a 2006 Chevy HHR lt. Thanksgiving day I went to move my car out of the driveway and when I tried to get out of the car the interior door handle on the driver door came off in my hand. I have done my research and found this is a common problem with this vehicle. I even walked up to another HHR I saw on a parking lot and it had the same problem. My safely concern is that I cannot open the door without rolling down my window and reaching outside the car to the exterior handle. If I was in an accident and had a electrical failure I could not exit the car because I could not roll down the window. Everything I have found in my research is that Chevrolet is not recgonizing this as a real problem and from what I have seen/read they have been unwilling to correct the problem when it occurs or help the vehicle owners in any way. I have checked on the repair and found that the door handle itself can not be replaced that you have to buy an entire door panel for over $400 and that is just the part, no labor. How can this be a known problem, and Chevrolet not stand behind their product? the inability to exit my vehicle in the aftermath of an accident greatly concerns me and should concern Chevrolet especially with the multiple complaints I have read online of this issue occurring.

- Brownwood, TX, USA

problem #15

Aug 102010

HHR 4-cyl

  • 56,000 miles
Chevy HHR interior door handles break off easy and without warning. No improved handle is offered. This would make it hard to get out of the car in case of emergency. Being excited you may pull on the door handle a little harder. If there is a stress fracture in the handle you will not be able to see it.

- Claymont, DE, USA

problem #14

Nov 012010


  • 93,000 miles
2006 Chevrolet HHR interior door handle failures. In my instance the plastic handle that is used to open the door on the drivers side broke off. This is a widely complained about issue on the web. If you google "HHR drivers side interior door handle broken" you get 1000's of people discussing this issue. The cost to repair is very high and people are not doing it. Chevy does not sell just the plastic part, they require you to purchase an entire assembly, the cost runs nearly $600 with labor for a plastic part. The issue is that dealerships do not stock this part, they need to order it and it takes time, this is a safety issue as the only way to exit the car is to open the door from the outside, so that requires rolling a window down and opening it from the outside. If you needed to exit the vehicle in a hurry, such as after an accident, you would not be able to do so. This is a great concern. Besides the fact that this is being reported as a problem and Chevy is not trying to rectify the situation, or to even provide the part outside of purchasing the entire assembly.

- Odenton, MD, USA

problem #13

Aug 152008

HHR 4-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
Door handles in this vehicle are plastic and break. Thisis the 2nd time the same door handle has broken. The cost to replace is appr. $300 - $400. In an accident the driver would not be able to exit the vehicle.

- New Hartford, CT, USA

problem #12

Aug 152010


  • 56,000 miles
Chevy HHR 2006 drivers side interior door handle broke off in hand during normal use. Made of cheap plastic. Auto maker states that the only way to repair is to completely remove the door and pay. All of this for a piece of plastic which should cost pennies to replace? I suffer from neck pain and have trouble rolling the window down to reach out and open the door. They have to fix this at their cost. This is obviously no fault of the owners and only due to faulty (plastic) equipment they are using.

- Cathedral City, CA, USA

problem #11

Jun 052010


  • 72,500 miles
The interior door handle of my 2006 Chevrolet HHR broke off during normal use. It's made from a cheap plastic. This is a serious safety hazard as a person cannot quickly exit the car if this happens. If my driver's side door just broke, how soon before the other three in the car break off from normal operation. This is a manufacturing defect and should be taken care of from the manufacturer. The dealer wants me to pay $400-$450 to replace a $10 plastic door handle that they poorly designed. This should be a recall from GM to replace these cheap handles before someone does have a serious situation.

- Glen Carbon, IL, USA

problem #10

Jul 042010


  • 53,000 miles
Interior door handle broken. Door must be opened using outside handle. Handle is plastic. Entire interior door panel must be replaced. Part costs $400 plus labor - replacement handle is plastic also. Car is 2006 Chevrolet HHR with 53,000 miles.

- Tonawanda, NY, USA

problem #9

Jul 052010


  • 72,000 miles
2006 HHR ls - driver's side door handle broke off with normal opening of the door. Could not get out of the car without putting window down and using the outside handle. If this was an emergency - I would have been stuck in the car. Power steering failure - power steering quits while driving - was going 55 mph. And the power steering just went off.. pulled to the side with difficulty - shut the car off. Restarted car - and the power steering was working again. Very dangerous situation.

- Phillipston, MA, USA

problem #8

May 142010


  • 45,000 miles
2006 Chevy HHR. The drivers side door interior door handle snapped off in my hand when I tried to open the door, smacking into my knuckle and almost causing my hand to fly back into my face. The door must now be opened by rolling down the electric window and opening from the outside handle. Two dealers so far refuse to fix the issue, telling me they don't have parts.

- Chicago Ridge, IL, USA

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