really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
44,289 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 engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Chevrolet HHR Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #23

Mar 112015


  • miles


My car coolant went from 187 to 216 what cause this.

- Cumberland, MD, USA

problem #22

Dec 092013

HHR 4-cyl

  • 65,966 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that while driving approximately 30 mph and making a right turn, the power steering warning light illuminated and the steering wheel seized. The contact had to restart the vehicle in order for to resume normal function. The vehicle was taken to the independent mechanic, who diagnosed that the fuse box needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired but the failure persisted. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 65,966....updated 03-11-15 the consumer stated the part was replaced and there have been no more steering issue. However, the check engine light illuminated intermittently. Updated 03/26/15

- Colorado Springs , CO, USA

problem #21

Oct 222014


  • 90,000 miles
I recently started getting a dashboard message saying "reduced engine power" and the car loses power and will only get to about 10-15 mph. I was driving at round 45 mph when this happened and the car behind me almost hit me because the car slowed down too fast with no break lights until I hit them. Since then it happens randomly a few times a weeks. It doesn't seem to happen while on cruise control so I have been trying to use it as much as I can. I have read forums and this issue and it seems like no one can pin point the exact problem as it can mean a number of different things. I don't have the money to try out all the different fixes for this in hopes that I get the right thing fixed before I spend thousands of dollars. With the number of other people having this problem there should be a recall to at least have the car checked out to pin point the problem free of charge.

- Leesburg, FL, USA

problem #20

Jul 092014


  • miles


This has been an ongoing problem with my 2006 HHR.I replaced solenoids and it stopped for a few years.I am sick of it I called Chevy years ago and they wanted me to pay to have it looked at with no guarantees, I already paid a mechanic hundreds and had a readout for them. I almost crashed into a semi truck exiting hwy one morning taking my daughter to school another exciting hwy also I have a list 2013/2014 now I was driving local and in the middle of turning power steering went out yet again. I was relaxed not ready for it...it has been going on off and on for years. I replaced fuse as told and I thought it fixed the problem for a few weeks nothing.I could put down at least 10 dates when I have had close calls with this problem... I have read 1000's of complaints on power steering problems & shifter with 2006 HHR on different sites. Why has nothing been done? amazing a big company can get away with this.they wait until a person loses their life before they do anything.

- Forney , TX, USA

problem #19

Oct 132012

HHR 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles
This is an ongoing safety problem that Chevy/GM doesn't care to worry about. My cars steering wheel shakes when I am driving. Sometimes to the point of the car to be uncontrollable in addition to this the traction control light goes on along with the engine light. I have brought this in to the dealer every two months and have been told a combination of what the dealers mechanics feel the problem is. I have had steering columns replaced, cam shaft solenoids, bushings, rotors. The list goes on. Nothing has fixed the issue. Today bringing back to the dealer I am now told that I am lucky to be alive as both control arms in the front are seconds from breaking along with the links that keep the car stable.. the mechanic shared that had I hit a pothole I would have died as the car would have spun out of control and impossible to recover as I would have no way to control the steering wheel. Now having two kids, and this being an ongoing problem one would think that Chevy/GM would pay for the replacement of their faulty part. I cant afford a new car, and I can no longer afford to pay for GM's mistakes. My car is paid off and now I don't feel safe driving it. To "fix it" and I say this loosely it will cost 1,800 out of my pocket.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #18

Apr 232012


  • miles
I was driving my vehicle on the 401 on ramp (going 35km/hr) it was a rainy day. I randomly and all of a sudden lost power, including my power steering. No lights, no warnings, just gone. I couldn't turn the wheel to continue with the curved on ramp. I'm not that strong and without power steering I couldn't do it as well. As I wasn't able to do much I hit the break after I was already mid air from hitting the curb and going straight. I landed perpendicular on the 401. Taking up all of lane 1 and part of lane 2. lucky traffic stopped before hitting my car. This was terrifying. No warning but no power and whack goodbye power steering.

- Oshawa, Ontario - Canada, MA, USA

problem #17

Jun 272011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 125,767 miles


Bought car 5/29/2011 was not informed about any after market parts installed or that it was involved in any type of collision. Vehicle title record only indicated a recall for airbags was pending. On 6/27/2011 upon leaving residence driving down the street heard loud sound from bottom of car. Pulled over to find that the noise came from exhaust pipe somewhere. Went to Chevrolet dealer learned that it was a crack in the flung connected to the motor and the replacement included the catalytic cnvrt as one piece. They said not a warranty item costs apprx. $700 to install. On 1/27/2012 was told by the licensing bureau that the vehicle had a aftermarket exhaust system installed.

- Tracy, CA, USA

problem #16

Dec 162011


  • 55,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that the battery died without warning. The battery was replaced, but the vehicle could not be started. The engine shut down warning light was also illuminated. The contact spoke with the manufacturer in regards to the failure and the manufacturer advised that the engine would need to be reset. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 55,000.

- Peralta, NM, USA

problem #15

Mar 292011


  • 67,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. While driving approximately 30 mph the power steering locked up and the brake pedal became stiff. The contact stated the vehicle began to shake vigorously and the engine light illuminated on the dashboard. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technicians stated the engine component wires needed to be re-adjusted because they were loose. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was unavailable. The approximate failure mileage was 67,000. Updated 05/25/11

- Largo, FL, USA

problem #14

Feb 012011


  • 97,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that the check engine warning light illuminated intermittently while driving approximately 60 mph and the vehicle stalled. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic and he was unable to duplicate the failure. The dealer was contacted but the vehicle was not repaired. The current mileage was 98,000 and the failure mileage was 97,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Apex, NC, USA

problem #13

Apr 082011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 104,420 miles


Stalls unexpectedly. No obvious reasons or signs. This is the second time, the first time was about 4 months ago.

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #12

Jan 012011


  • 38,000 miles
2006 Chevrolet HHR. Consumer states several problems with vehicle the consumer stated his sons vehicle had a severe shimmy in the steering wheel and became progressively worse when the brake was applied. The pads and rotors were replaced twice and the third time the rotors were machined, but the problem continued. There was also a strange noise coming from the front suspension, but the dealer was unable to pinpoint the problem. At 42,000 miles the air condition made a loud screeching noise for 2 minutes, then stopped working. At 68,000 miles, a metal skid plate had fallen from underneath the vehicle. Soon after, the exhaust was very loud. The vehicle was taken to the repair shop and the consumer was informed the catalytic converter had cracked. The vehicle lost power and a cylinder had to be replaced, the check engine light would come on and then go off, the temperature gauge did not work, so the air condition only worked if the check engine light was off. The door locks did not work, the radio worked intermittently, the sun visor would fall down at random times. There were times when the vehicle would not start. The consumer stated even with an alignment, new struts, shocks and good tires, the vehicle continually pulled to the right.

- Keller, TX, USA

problem #11

Aug 212010


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. The contact was driving approximately 35 mph when the vehicle began to decelerate independently. There was a strong burning odor and the contact discovered that there was a hole in the engine oil pan. The vehicle was towed to the contact's residence and he contacted the manufacturer. The manufacturer would not provide any assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The current and failure mileage was approximately 50,000.

- Strathmore , CA, USA

problem #10

Aug 032010


  • miles
My '06 Chevy HHR was running fine for 4 years and then 3 weeks ago the engine light came on and my car stopped and started coasting while I was in the middle of driving it. After that incident, it happened intermittently every other day and now we can't drive it a few miles without it shutting down several times. It always starts right back up but it is extremely dangerous B/C it happened while my husband is driving on the freeway. We are at the point where we don't drive it outside of the neighborhood and we're going to see about getting a new vehicle. I saw online where people were having the same problem. I am going to the dealer next week to have it checked by them but I don't think I should have to pay for this if it is a defect in the vehicle.

- Birmingham, AL, USA

problem #9

Jan 202010


  • 3,000 miles
I bought my car brand new and sometimes without warning the engine light comes on and you only have a few seconds to pull over before it shuts down. Sometimes the light comes on when I'm stopped at a red light and the whole car starts shaking as if you popped the clutch too fast, except this car is an automatic. I have found through trail and error if I start messing with the computer buttons on the steering wheel that changes the information that is displayed on the dash board it will sometimes reset itself and act okay. Other times I have to let it sit for over 20 minutes before it will start up again. There is no set time this occurs, sometimes it happens a few times a day and other times it will go a month without happening. It shuts down at various speeds. Sometimes I'm going 65 miles and hour and other times I'm going 20 mph. I have brought the car back to the dealer but they told me they can't fix it until they reenact the problem. Each time they have had the car they could not reenact the problem, yet they said they can see there is a problem when they read the computer. I paid $20,000 for this car and am scared to drive it. I can't drive on the highway for fear it will shut down again. I have to take the back roads to get around.

- Davie , FL, USA

problem #8

Feb 162010


  • miles
I have a 2006 Chevy HHR that keeps stalling out and jerks forward. It has jerked so hard that I once hit someone in the rear. Luckily there was no damage to the other car. I have taken it back to the dealer numerous times and they can never seem to find the cause. What can I do?

- North Hollywood, CA, USA

problem #7

Oct 132009


  • 74,504 miles
2006 Chevy HHR stalls when potholes/bumps are hit in the road. Car has stalled three times on major highways in the past six months. The first time the car stalled back in June 2009, I took the car to a chevorlet dealer to have the car checked out and they could not determine why the car stalled. The most recent incident happened on Tuesday night October 13, 2009. I hit a pothole in the road my car stalled without warning. Lucky for me there was no trucks or cars behind me because there was no shoulder on the road. At this point, I am nervous and anxious when I drive my car.

- North Burnswick, NJ, USA

problem #6

May 302009


  • 26,024 miles
Owner of a 2006 Chevy HHR. First time was driving down highway approx. 35-40 mph hit a pothole in normal driving condition on normal road way. Car stalled lost engine, brakes and steering. Still under warranty. Went back to dealer. Second time same scenario this time had car towed into dealer. They had car one week said they could not replicate problem therefore there is nothing wrong. Contacted GM lodged complaint no action on their part to fix problem. Twice to original dealer. After second time told not to bring it back they were no longer doing warranty repairs third incident I was just driving off an apron leaving a parking lot when the engine stalled while entering traffic. Called around can't find another dealer willing to look at problem. I called and as soon as they heard the problem they said they would have a tech call me. Still waiting. No physical harm done yet. But I have to use the car and am frightened that my child, or myself or a car in my path is going to get hurt. Listing date of first assurance.

- Centereach Ny, NY, USA

problem #5

Dec 182008


  • 13,456 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet HHR. While driving approximately 75 mph on normal road conditions, the traction control switch activated. Suddenly, the traction control disengaged without assistance. There was no response when the accelerator pedal was depressed. The vehicle began to idle excessively and surged unexpectedly. Immediately, the vehicle was driven to an authorized dealer for inspection, but they could not duplicate the failure. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer on three separate occasions for identical failures. The repairs consisted of installing a data recorder and replacing the BCM. In addition, the steering column and gear shifter were replaced. The vehicle was not being driven due to the safety risk involved. The failure mileage was 13,456 and current mileage was 15,500.

- Box Elder, SD, USA

problem #4

Sep 292008


  • 43,800 miles
My coolant gauge on the instrument panel would not work occasionally but would start working again within miles and before I could get it to the dealer. They looked at it the first time and said there was nothing they could do unless it stopped working completely, that they had no way of finding out why it would stop working and then just start working again. It happened the first time at about 15,00 miles and then again about every 5,000 miles further. It stopped working the other day again (everything else worked fine on the panel and no problems with the heat/air, radiator or any other coolant issue) but this time it made the "check engine" light come on also. I called the dealer and they said it was best not to drive it in case the engine would overheat so I had it towed to the shop. They finally diagnosed the problem as the thermostat sticking and charged me the full cost of repairs and towing since the mileage was now at 43,800. I had been having this problem for 30,000 miles but they could never figure out why. The last time it happened, my ac wouldn't work. They said that the ac compressor which costs $1300 to replace is broken but that the problem with the coolant gauge/thermostat had nothing to do with it. It just seems very coincidental that both go out at the same time. My car has had other problems that I've never heard anyone having with a brand new car that is less than 3 years old. I will never recommend anyone by this year/model car. It's dangerous due to the problems that everyone is experiencing and in constant need of repair. My next issue with my car is a noise that comes and goes in the front suspension. Again, this problem comes and goes and they can never figure out the problem because it works great when the dealer has it. I would get rid of this car if I could afford to.

- N. Charleston, SC, USA

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