Car Will Not Start, Anti-Theft Light Comes On


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
103,350 miles
Total Complaints:
6 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (5 reports)
  2. touch something metal to the negative on battery (1 reports)
1998 Oldsmobile Cutlass electrical problems

electrical problem

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1998 Oldsmobile Cutlass Owner Comments

problem #6

Jun 152008

Cutlass 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles


Since June of 2008 the anti-theft light comes on and the car won't start. This still happens continuously. Cannot get it fixed. I had to buy an OBD II code reader to erase the code. I have to carry the OBD in my car dash at all times because you never know when the problem will occur again. Tired of being left stranded. If anyone figures out a solution please let me know.

- albertwv, Romney, WV, US

problem #5

May 172008

Cutlass V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

My 98 Cutlass Olds will not start. This has happened a couple of dozen times in the last 9 -12 months.This is sporadic and very frustrating and no solution is in sight. The engine turns but will not catch. I have heard that this is related to the anti-theft system and fuel cut off switch. Will a remote started fix this since it would by-pass the key start? If not, what else can I do? Usually waiting 20 minutes to reset will allow it to start again but today that did not work nor did any of the solutions I am finding online. The screwdriver to battery did not work, keeping the key in the ACC position for 10 minutes, holding down the 1 & 4 radio buttons for 5 seconds, etc...

Stranded in Chicago!

- wooly, Barrington, IL, US

problem #4

Aug 202007

(reported on)

Cutlass GL V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

The easiest way i found to fix this problem after running a full diagnostic on my electrical system and basically resetting the entire system, was to take something metallic (a screwdriver is what i use, and touch it to the negative on your car's battery. That seems to cause the system to reset itself. Sometimes it takes a few tries if you're alone, but if you have a passenger, just hold the screwdriver on the negative and have the passenger turn the key and it 90% of the time starts right up in the first try. It's never taken me more than 3 tries

- Alec W., Indian Head, MD, US

problem #3

Aug 012007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles


I have been having problems with my anti theft system for 2 years. I have had the ignition switched, the battery replaced, the alternator replaced and so on. I have been left stranded over a dozen times and have had my car towed half a dozen times. Every mechanic and even the Olds dealership in SC couldn't fix the problem. I switched out all the fuses 10 months ago and it helped for a while, now the problem is back again.

- laurasc, North Augusta, SC, US

problem #2

Mar 232007

(reported on)

Cutlass 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

Anti-theft light comes on sporatically. If the car is running, no problem, if not, it won't start for at least 15 min. Sometimes removing the fuse and replacing it resets it or something.

- stormgirlchaos, Boulder City, NV, US

problem #1

Dec 032006

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 175,000 miles

We have a horrible problem with out car that nobody can seem to figure out, for no reason at all the anti theft light will come on and you have to sit and wait for about 10-15 minutes for it to go off and then usually the car will start. We have had our mechanic come to the car once when it was stalled and they still have no idea what the problem is so they have no way of fixing the problem. This seems to be getting more frequent and is really a pain and sometimes embarrassing.

- John F., Grant, NE, US

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