really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
37,943 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.

2008 Chevrolet HHR electrical problems

electrical problem

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2008 Chevrolet HHR Owner Comments (Page 4 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #17

Jul 282008


  • 24,000 miles


I bought this car in June of 2008. It has been in the shop 17 times with electrical problems the brakes have quite working came to a stop sign and they went to the floor the car has shut off several times going down the road and when it rains really hard the car will not start it drains my brand new battery I got the car from bob steel Chevrolet in cocca fl they kept telling me there was nothing they could do I called a lawyer and GM motors decided to give me 10% of the car and they never fixed the car this it the 4th battery because it is draining them so much there no good GM motors told me they were going to label the car as a lemon but because I bought it used they weren't going to buy it back they also told me that the 2007 had the same problem but because this was a 2008 and no other problems with this model to just deal with it I don't know what lest to do please help.

- Mims, FL, USA

problem #16

Apr 152010


  • 55,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet HHR. The contact was driving 35 mph when the vehicle decreased in speed despite the accelerator pedal being depressed. The traction warning light illuminated during the failure. The vehicle was taken to the dealer nine times. The dealer confirmed the fuse box the wiring housing and transmission needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was contacted. The vehicle was not repaired and the VIN was unknown. The failure mileage was 55,000 and the current mileage was 83,000.

- Sheffield Lake, OH, USA

problem #15

Mar 262012


  • 64,000 miles
Opened car door. Sat in seat. Put key in ignition started car. Turned ignition to off to stop motor.turned key to on (not starting motor) all electrical systems died. Had no access to rear hatch to check battery (electric latch release). Could not remove key from ignition in off position. From what I have been reading on line this is a common known issue that Chevrolet is aware of and had already has a replacement part for. Went back to the car on 03/27/2012 to remove personal items prior to a tow to dealership. Tried starting the car. It started up ok. Drove the car to the dealer and left it there over night for early bird service. Called this morning, 03/28/2012 and was told by the service associate that the vehicle would not start ans the electrical system was dead when they went to move it. Service department called me ay 3pm to let me know that my assessment of the bad ignition cylinder was correct and what the charges would be.

- Suffolk, VA, USA

problem #14

Mar 072012


  • 43,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that the key became stuck in the ignition and the vehicle could not be started. The contact had the vehicle towed to the dealer and was told that the ignition switch needed to be replaced. The dealer stated that if the housing was damaged, that would also have to be replaced and the keys would have to be reprogrammed. The front wheels on the vehicle had also seized abnormally. The failure and the current mileages were 43,000.

- Arnaudville, LA, USA

problem #13

Jan 142011


  • 50,000 miles
After driving for more than 10-30 min, at any speed but usually at or above 50 mph, the power steering would malfunction intermittently, steering/handling became difficult. Feels like it's over-correcting or is ice-skating around the lane when keeping the wheel straight. Occasionally HHR will buck while driving on the highway, would slow down to 55-65mph and still experience rough bucking & poor handling. Took to dealership to fix what I thought was an alignment issue, they said there were no other problems, but still experience them almost daily. Also have had troubles removing the key from ignition after shifting the car into park.

- Davisburg, MI, USA

problem #12

Jul 232011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
Both key fobs began working intermittently, finally failing completely. Problem began around 38,000 mileage. Complete failure around 40,000 mileage. Now key in door no longer works (only one key entry on entire car) so taking to dealer tomorrow. Mileage around 45,000.

- Atlanta, MI, USA

problem #11

Jun 252011


  • 57,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet HHR. The contact stated that the vehicle would not shut off due to the key being stuck in the ignition. In order to shut the vehicle off, the contact had to engage the clutch and manual shifter until it stalled. The key still would not remove from the ignition. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where they were unable to diagnose the failure. The battery died as a result. The failure mileage was 57,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Grand Rapids, MI, USA

problem #10

Aug 302010


  • 58,000 miles
The electric power steering turned itself off mid turn causing a drastic understeering leading the vehicle into oncoming traffic, upon research I found that GM recalled the exact same steering components that failed in the HHR in other GM vehicles but not the HHR. If this does not warrant serious investigation what does. The second time this happened everything was fine as we were driving straight, the problem occurred when the electric power steering turned back on mid-turn causing my wife to over turn into someone's front lawn, had anyone been in the way this would have been tragic. We've been lucky this far but as we are a low income household we don't have the means to pay some dealer to fix this as they all say it's on us the owners to take care of even though it's the same defective equipment that was in vehicles like the cobalt and Pontiac lines, why hasn't there been a recall issued, this is a sever driving impairment that can cause accidents and GM doesn't seem to care due to it's an acceptable loss! no life is an acceptable loss, please address this issue as there are many complaints into this same issue in the research I preformed, by the way, why is it GM Canada issued a recall on this part for the HHR and not the us branch? our HHR is a 2008 with 66000 miles on it and the electric power steering is the issue.

- Lockport, NY, USA

problem #9

Feb 222011

HHR 4-cyl

  • 41,000 miles
I live in deltona, fl and drove to palm bay, fl from home and got out of my car, returned to it a few minutes later and started it with the key fob and got in and the key would not turn in the ignition. Had to let the car turn itself off and tried several times to turn the key. The steering wheel was not locked, I walked to a nearby Firestone dealer who kindly agreed to let a technician come over to my car and try to turn the key, he was unsuccessful as well after several attempts. He was able to pull the steering wheel into the locked position however was still unable to turn the key in the ignition. I had to call a tow truck to tow me to the nearest Chevy dealership, in melbourne, fl. This dealership wouldn't even tell me if they had the part in stock to replace it so that I could drive home they told me to pay to be towed and let them look at it and see what the issue really was. I went online and saw that many other HHR owners have experienced this issue and they had suggestions on how to correct it, due to the fact that the tumbler was frozen. I walked to a gas station to by wad-40 and sprayed it in the ignition hole and unlocked my steering wheel adjustment to allow me to pull it up and down as quickly and as hard as I could to get the tumbler to free itself up, to no avail. 1.5 hours after the issue began the tow truck driver showed up and asked me what was wrong and I told him he could try and he was able to get the key to turn. I drove back home the 1.5 hours and my husband is ordering a replacement piece to install. Why should we pay to replace this piece when this has been happening to so many owners of this vehicle make and model?

- Deltona, FL, USA

problem #8

Apr 122010


  • 11,000 miles
I took car into dealership because it's stalling in traffic repeatedly when I am trying to come to a stop and even once when just driving. I took it in and they said they didn't know what it was and diagnostics weren't reporting any problems. They released vehicle that next day and it stalled on me in lot. They stated they could not get the vehicle to stall yet it happened within five min of me picking it up. I then took it back they kept it for the weekend. Released it back to me after I was told it had stalled once but they didn't know what it was. I contacted G.M customer service and then the dealership when I got the report stated it hesitated and when I asked why they put that down and not that it had stalled like the kathy had told me on 3 different occasions it had done, they refused to answer me. The car still stalls in traffic and they refuse to fix it. I will no longer take it here. I just want my car to be safe where I won't get hit doing uturns into traffic like I almost have been with my baby the day I picked up vehicle. I have to put it in park to start it over again. I can't do that on this busy hwy I live on with traffic coming at me as fast as it does in this city.

- Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #7

Dec 262009


  • 23,000 miles


2008 Chevy HHR, stall 5 times, electrical system failed, no hazard light to warned other drivers of vehicle present.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #6

Jun 302009


  • 13,850 miles
So far it has happened twice my wife leaving work the car stalled. First time her speed was aprox. 40 mph, 10 minutes into her drive. The next day we took the 2008 Chevy HHR to the dealer in chino California on Feb,26,2009.they kept the car for a couple of days, and could not find a problem. Second time her speed was aprox, 35 mph, 5 minutes into her drive. Date June 30,2009. Both times see was able to coast over to the side of the road. And both times the car started right away with no indication of trouble.

- Fontana, CA, USA

problem #5

Feb 172009


  • miles
Gauge shows you are going 120mph, has happened 4 times, last for a few hours to a few days. Not safe not knowing what speed you are driving.

- Pittsford, MI, USA

problem #4

Dec 022008


  • 18,886 miles
Just bought an 2008 HHR 18000 miles on it drove it home then went to go out and now the ignition key won't turn. Key just goes in and out. The 800 service people no help just said jiggle keys and keep turning the steering wheel to get the key to turn... any answers out there"?" think they need a recall after reading so many problems the HHR ignition switch has... some even say they can't get it to shutoff and they keys are stuck.

- Newport, WA, USA

problem #3

Oct 262008


  • 680 miles
After purchase of a new 2008 HHR on 22 September 2008, I drove the vehicle home and upon getting into it the next morning I backed out of my garage and notice a very soft brake pedal. I then started down the drive way and when attempting to stop at the street the vehicle's brakes would not comply with my brake pressure and the vehicle proceeded into the street. This became a routine situation upon "cold startup's" and when reported to the dealer, (john donoghue Chevrolet, whiteville, nc) after several poor stops, my salesman advised "yeah we know about it as we've had the same problem on 2008 solstices". when confronted with a possible fix he advised that " a part on the turbo fixes the problem." I made arrangements to have the car serviced upon my return from vacation on or about 26 Oct 08. I dropped the car off with the service writer/manager and no mention was made as to poten tial problems fixing the car. Upon my return several hours later I was advised by the service manager that the problem is systemic to 2008 turbo engines and General Motors doesn't want to recall the cars. The dealership service manager provided me with a service bulletin that GM put out as a potential "fix" but he refused to service the car. I took the vehicle to another Chevrolet dealership and they readjusted the computer, per the bulletin; however, the vehicle still does not stop properly on cold startup. GM customer service personnel and the bulletin advised that "they are working on the issue."

- Bolivia, NC, USA

problem #2

Nov 082008


  • 12,247 miles
Chevy HHR 2008 - complete electrical failure while attempting to enter traffic from home depot parking lot. Couldn't unlock doors or window to escape vehicle. Called 911 fairfield ct, fire dept responded to open vehicle. Trapped inside for 15 minutes. Problem with car's fuse box, cutting off all electrical power just 10 minutes earlier traveling at 60 mph on I-95.

- N Ft Myers, FL, USA

problem #1

Aug 012008


  • miles
2008 Chevy HHR with a burning hair odor intermittently. Consumer states that the vehicle also stopped running. She states that when it shut off he had no brakes or steering. The consumer also stated there was a problem with the speakers.

- Lakewood, CA, USA

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