NHTSA — Electrical System Problems


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
62,037 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.

2003 Pontiac Aztek electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Pontiac Aztek Owner Comments

problem #17

Sep 182013

Aztek 6-cyl

  • miles


Not exactly sure of the date of these incidents, but I can smell fumes coming through the vents when I am driving, had to get this checked a few weeks ago. The mechanic said the gas was leaking replaced this part. I am still smelling something in the engine area. I am not sure what and why. The vehicle also feels like it is shaking when I apply the brakes, and the brakes are fine. It usually does it when I am braking and also when I go past 40mph. It has gotten really bad that I am thinking about getting rid of vehicle and not having a vehicle. Also, I can hear a cranking noise in the steering column when I am turning that makes me think the vehicle is breaking in half. I have had to replace the gas cap last year as well for fumes.

- New Castle, PA, USA

problem #16

Oct 312014


  • 210,000 miles
Since October 31st. My car has shut off about 15 while driving, I lose power of my steering and cannot move my car. I saw today that there is a GM ignition recall but my car is not involved when I call GM.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #15

Aug 202014

Aztek 6-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
I was driving at about 30mph when my vehicle just shut down w/O warning/symptoms. My lights still worked but the vehicle totally shut down and locked up otherwise and I coasted to a stop mid roadway. Key was stuck in ignition and in the on position and wouldn't let me turn key to any other position and key wouldn't come out so I sat until battery died which shut the vehicle off.when vehicle initially lost power and came to a stop I tried to put vehicle into park and attempt a restart which is when I realized the key and ignition wouldn't move and then vehicle wouldn't move out of park either.also at the moment my car shut down, I glanced down at dash and saw system warning message flash stating ABS error but was unsure if this was the only message it had flashed or if this was just the last one that I caught and they had possibly all flashed as part of the malfunction but had never heard of anything brake related cause an entire vehicle system to shut down totally and be dead as a result with total lockup of all controls.I had to have vehicle towed home and have had nothing but confusion from all of the tow truck drivers, mechanic friends, etc.as to what or why this would happen. They all suggested that it seemed to be my computer or electrical possibly because the car was totally dead and did not make any noise or click or anything but silence when attempting to power back and restart. I had my two kids with me and one was a baby in a torrential downpour of a rainstorm and this was my vehicle stranded mid corner in a blind spot with no way of moving car from danger of middle of road or even being able to remove my key so as to abandon the vehicle out of safety concern.this is not the only case of this happening to this vehicle from what I am reading on consumer reported incidents and complaints/investigations. This needs to be a recall and it is all electrical error related.

- Camby, IN, USA

problem #14

Feb 042014

Aztek 6-cyl

  • 125,000 miles


In the middle of turning on a busy road I suddenly lost all power to my car. It seemed as if my car was shut off but the ignition was still in the on position. I almost hit/side swiped 3 different cars. This has been a recurring issue since about Feb. 2014. I have gone to different shops and no one can seem to tell me what is wrong. First it was an O2 sensor, then possibly a bad seal on my gas cap, no check engine light comes on. I've gone through fixing everything they say and now everyone seems to be at a loss. I've had this issue both while driving and while slowing down to turn.

- Harrison Township, MI, USA

problem #13

Apr 112014


  • 146,000 miles
My Aztek started to sputtering one morning, bringing my car to a stop. The car stalled and I would have to restart. It seemed like I couldn't go over 40 mph. It's just kept hiccuping. I took it to a mechanic and got a new fuel and air filter. Still having problems, I replaced the idle air control valve. That didn't fix the problem. My car continued to get worse and couldn't even get anywhere. Took it to have the catalytic converter replaced, and it ran ok for about two weeks then it began to do it again. Took it back to the shop, and diagnostics read that it needed a new O2 sensor. So I replaced that and it seems like it has only gotten worse. The shop that replaced the converter and O2 sensor spent 6 hours or labor trying to find the root of the problem and they couldn't figure it out; and refused to replace anything else because they were uncomfortable with charging me more money and the car not getting fixed.this morning (about a little over a month this all started) I tried to make it into town where I could take it to another shop, and my car completely gave up. The key wouldn't even turn over. So that has racked me up a nice towing bill. Over 1000 doll as S in the last month, and my car is completely dead. Seems like my problem is the same as everyone else's on the internet with an Aztek.

- Brunswick, GA, USA

problem #12

Aug 182013


  • 99,600 miles
TL- the contact owns a 2003 Pontiac Aztek. The contact stated after having the vehicle washed and dried the vehicle failed to start. The vehicle was towed to a dealer for diagnosis and the contact was informed that a wire had gotten wet and melted several fuses. The vehicle was repaired. The failure and current mileage was 99,600.

- Elmira, NY, USA

problem #11

Dec 062011


  • miles


Dash losing different component operation. Started with fuel gauge and temperature gauge then affected radio lights and lcd display. Now vehicle speedometer has become erratic and untrustworthy. Radio lights and display an inconvenience but the combination of fuel and now the speedometer not reading properly is causing a concern for safety. At the rate this is going the whole dash will be malfunctioning soon. According to what I see the parts alone can be $300 - $500 plus the repair charges. Internet has countless entries about the electrical problems on the Pontiac Azteks but no service bulletins on the NHTSA web site and no mentioning of any recalls by Pontiac. Why isn't the NHTSA looking into this with so many problems being shared on the internet" why are the owners being required to pay for these repairs since it's such a widespread Aztek issue"

- Forest View, IL, USA

problem #10

Oct 122010


  • miles
The electrical has done nothing but messed up first the radio light went out and now the dash light is out so there is no visibility at night to see your speed, the anti lock light stays on until the anti lock light comes on, also the all wheel drive keeps disabling, I have replace 3 of the 4 hubs that were eaten through and now its looking like another one is going. The brake light keeps coming on and dinging, I have to turn the car off and back on to get it to stop, I am eating through the brake pads because of the anti lock brakes don't turn off right away, also have problems where the car when you start it up does not start it just goes right to battery light but yet nothing wrong just glitching. I have read alot of forums on the Aztek and this has been happening to alot of Azteks and I have talked to people that I know that own Azteks and they have alot of the same electrical problems.

- Toledo, OH, USA

problem #9

Jul 152011

Aztek 6-cyl

  • 76,000 miles
2003 Pontiac Aztek has been building from ABS and brake lights and chimes to fuel gage losses all intermittent. Vehicle locks up and won't start or has started starting on its own in the garage. It is reminding me of being a kid in the 60S and playing pinball with all the lights and "specials" lighting up! reading from online stuff I am in a group of many owners having problems that are the same. One common theme is the body control module! is GM hiding their heads in the sand over this problem. I am going to be replacing my module as I don't want my car gasing us to death at night in my garage. Lucky my door to the garage was open today! I am totally disappointed that GM has not and the government has not made them set up and take care of these problems. No fire yet no damage yet no crash yet! and they are lucky if this hasn't hurt someone yet.

- Nd, ND, USA

problem #8

Oct 012007


  • miles
A few years ago, the radio lights stopped working & a cd was stuck in the player. Several times, the headlights have gone out. We replace them but they go out again. A few months ago, none of the inside power ports worked. I replaced the fuse. I plugged in an MP3 player charger. After doing this, when leaving the car, the lights would not go out unless you pulled the fuse. When you would shut the doors, without the key being in it, the door locks would lock by themselves. As a consequence of power still running to the lights that would not go out, it drained the battery and the brake lights stopped working. After a week of having to pull the fuse to get the lights to go out, the fuse to the power ports blew again and then the lights started working correctly. Now the blinker lights are not working. I took this car to a mechanic only for him to tell me he thought the light switch needed to be replaced. I did not pay to do this after looking at hundreds of online complaints about electrical problems in the Pontiac Aztek and individuals spending a lot of money for repairs, only to find that it does not fix the electrical problems we are experiencing. This is a safety hazard when electrical problems are causing brake lights, headlights, and blinkers to fail. As huge of a problem that this is, Pontiac should be responsible for repairing this with a recall.

- Chandler, OK, USA

problem #7

Aug 032009


  • 96,000 miles


Electrical mechanics in the car, I have been stuck in the middle of city traffic and cannot get the car to move. It stalls out in traffic.

- Dravosburg, PA, USA

problem #6

Jun 042007

Aztek 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The ati-lock (ABS) light comes on intermittently. First started 6/4/07 took car to deal. Dealer state the sensors is corroded and will not be covered under you extend warranty. They clean the sensors and charge me $200 dollars. According to the work order I was not charge any parts. So just 200 for labor to clean a sensor pick up the car that night the dashboard ati-lock (ABS) light came on and stay on. Return car back to deal they had the car for almost 2 week and replace the wheel bearing assembly. They state this should fix the dashboard ati-lock (ABS) light. Pick up the car that night went to stop the car and the ati-lock (ABS) light came back on. Return car back to the dealer had car for 5 days said one of two things the emc or ecc some ati-lock (ABS) computer or the wires running from the sensor to the computer is shorted out. They "jumped the sensors" by passing the engine wire harness so there is a direct path form the ABS sensor to the ABS computer. The deal state that is was fixed. Currently have the car and test driving it now 6/27/07

- Orchard Park, NY, USA

problem #5

May 122005

Aztek 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I'm having problems with my brakes and head lights and also my battery. I think it's a electricity problem. Every since I had this truck I have had to change my brakes about 10 times and my head lights about five times and battery twice. There's a grawl and roar sound coming from the brakes. The brakes went out on me one time cause me to run out in front of cars. This could have kill me an D my child. I ask for another car instead of this.

- Cordele, GA, USA

problem #4

Jan 012006

Aztek 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles
While the vehicle is running - vehicle is in park - vehicle will not come out of park and go into gear. You have to turn it off and restart the vehicle to get it to come out of park.

- Brandon, FL, USA

problem #3

Jun 132005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,147 miles
2003 Pontiac Aztek has a water leak. Ses light illuminates, fuel gage fluctates and carries an odor from water damage.C305 connector needed to be replaced because of corrosion caused from water. Dealership returned my car on June 20, 2005 stating everything was fixed and on July 18, 2005 car is back at dealership because floor is completely soaking wet again.as of today, July 19, 2005 the dealership has not contacted me regarding my vehicle, nor returned my phone calls. Cause of water leak must still be unknown.

- Clinton Twp, MI, USA

problem #2

Apr 222005

Aztek 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,743 miles
My vehicle should have fallen under the lemon law due to several problems, resulting in 21 visits to the dealer in less than 3 months. Besides all of these problems, I later had to take it back because when I made a short left to right turn the vehicle would die leaving me to try to steer it to safety. It was supposed to be fixed, but recently it started doing it again. This is a dangerous problem, and is threatening the lives of everyone.I am a single mom, and this is my only transportation. The vehicle now has 81,000 miles on it, and is out of warranty. This is obviously an ongoing problem, and I can't afford to have these repairs done.I would like to turn in all of my vehicle information and problems that it has had to someone. I tried to work with the dealer and Pontiac's customer service for the first year, and was finally told by walt grayson at grayson Pontiac that maybe I should consider an extended warranty. Instead of offering to assist with the situation. I have back up for everything that has been done to the vehicle. Can someone please help me?

- Sevierville, TN, USA

problem #1

May 052004

Aztek 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,145 miles
Aztek has stalled out without warning while driving. Stalls have taken place during low speeds (usually 10-15 mph) and always while turning. Has resulted in stalling in the middle of a busy intersection as well as other unsafe situations. When stalls the battery light comes on and steering freezes and must restart car. Starts back up with no problem and no problem lights indicated on dashboard. Service department unable to replicate problem and find no codes set for incidents in vehicles computer. Stalling has now occurred four times, always unpredictably and inconsistently but always on full tank of gas. Vehicle has 30, 000 miles and is in very good condition otherwise.

- Ann Arbor, MI, USA

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