Engine Won't Turn Over, Won't Start

2003 Pontiac Grand Am

This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Pontiac dealer.

CarComplaints.com Seal Of Avoid Like The Plague


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
89,900 miles
Total Complaints:
17 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (9 reports)
  2. fix magnet inside ignition (2 reports)
  3. added an external on/off switch on aftermarket stereo (1 reports)
  4. fix wiring between ignition switch and fuse box (1 reports)
  5. on position for 10 mins, off for 5 seconds, then start (1 reports)
  6. replace BCM module (1 reports)
2003 Pontiac Grand Am electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Pontiac Grand Am Owner Comments

problem #17

Dec 112015

Grand Am GT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 82,000 miles



- Adriana F., Oakland, CA, US

problem #16

Apr 122015

Grand Am GT 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,080 miles

The first time this happened, I parked my car for maybe an hour, no troubles leading up to it, I get in my car and it wont start. I have power to the radio, lights, dash, etc, just not the engine itself. there is no clicking noise, no turning over, nothing. So I jumped the car, replaced the battery, replaced the ground wire, replaced the starter, nothing. Then about a week later of playing around with different things, it just started on the next try. No indication of what it could be, I had a friend from a nearby shop look at it and he said he couldn't figure it out, everything seems to be working fine. All these parts and $400 later, it just starts. and without my car for a week, a pain in the ass. I googled this problem various times and many people have had the same issue.

- Brooke C., Stony Plain, AB, Canada

problem #15

Apr 092015

Grand Am GT 4door V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 242,796 miles

I received a post card fro GM RECALL! IMPORTANT INFORMATION. The card stated no charge. 14350 Unintended Ignition Key Rotation. I took the car in on 03/30/15 it took a hour to complete. Two day later I am shopping for Easter dinner and at the grocery store, the car would not start. When I placed the key in the ignition the interior lights would come on but the key would not turn the car on. So I had to call for a ride home and leave the car in the parking lot once I got home I call the dealership and left a message with the service department to return my call on Monday morning 4/6/15. On Monday I called the dealership and left a message with the service manager Wayne Goodlow and Sherrie Keys. I never received a call back from either of them I call and spoke with Sherrie Keys and she made a comment the " she believed that I called about 30 mins ago cause she was on lunch but not on Sat 4/4/15. I asked her for a manger and she transfer the call to Wayne Goodlow,, I left him a message and he did not call me until the next day 4/7/15. I call GM /Pontiac Customer Car on 4/7/15 and received some assistance with a tow to the dealership and when Wayne Goodlow returned my call I asked him about my ignition key and told him that my car will not start and that my keyless entry remote my be an issue cause the car is lock to were the key will not turn over to start the car. Wayne Goodlow told me that his technician knows to rest and that he highly dout that is the reason to why the car not working. I asked him for a tow to have my car come back there and he refuss to assist me with a tow. When I spoke with GM/ Pontiac Customer Care I received a tow and once the car was back there Wayne Goodlow called me to tell me that I have a bad ignition switch and It's nothing of my doing its broken and needs to be replace and the can take care of it and call me when it's done. I asked him how much would it be and he stated about $580 and then he discount it to $479 and discount it again to $270.00. I said ok and we ended the call. When the car was done I received a call from Sherrie Keys when I asked what is the total she said $377.00 I said what happen to the $270.00 and I asked to speak with Wayne Goodlow and was sent to his voice mail and I left a message on 4/8/15 and he did not return my call I did not come and get the call until the next day and he still did not call me I called him 2x . I received the car on 4/9/15 and was driving and the car started puttering and it stalled at the light so I put it in neutral when the light change I put it in drive and it was acting like it wanted to cut off. I made it to my appointment and when I was driving back home it cut off on me and stalled. I waited about 10 mins and started it back again and got it home. I took it to a service shop on 4/10/11 and told them that the car was stalling thinking I need a battier and had another fee $ 98.00 to have them put it on the machine to see why it's stalling and I was told to take it back to the dealer, the ignition is causing the car to cut off , the key came apart on the tech while he was driving the car and told me that this is some cheap replacement coming from the Dealership. I drove the car home and it stalled on me in my parking lot and I had to have my neighbor help me park the car backwards so I can have a tow the car will not start and when I made the turn to park the car cut off on me and would not start. Cant wait until Monday to call the dealership Moran Chevrolet Clinton Twp MI

- Rosiland F., Clinton Twp, US

problem #14

Sep 032012

Grand Am GT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,224 miles


Follow up 2003 Grand Am Competition Chevrolet diagnostic fuel pump and fuel system clean up.ONCE that was done $1200.00 later I went to the parking lot and guess what? The car dint started.Competition chevrolet wave the fee than started all over again.

They found the problem in the coding system,best way to describe it computer dint recognize code or they were fading.they couldn't communicate The security system was telling the other computer .the car was shutting the fuel pump. IF IT MAKE SENSE TO YOU GUYS it cost me approximately $860.00 plus a bunch of inconvenience and standing in a corner street for a ride to go to work or going home.Approximately 30 kilometer each way. I am a transit operator you certainly can understand I am time sensitive.All the problem that car cause dint help.

However this s two month now and the problem dint happen,i cross my fingers Thanks to Competition Chevrolet for their work.

Pontiac and dealer should stand behind their product and stop complicating our life with stupid modification who get you stuck in worse situation.Also think should be simple and free of interference.

- Richard M., Spruce Grove, AB, canada

problem #13

Feb 072011

Grand Am V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,000 miles

Car won't start most of the time....you never know from day to day if will start....it will turn over but won't start....I have had the "brain" under the hood replaced and the ignition switch repaced after the security light was staying on and was told that it was going out.....what else could be wrong

- pinkywolfwork, Pine Bluff, AR, US

problem #12

Jan 112011

Grand Am 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,234 miles

Car would NOT turn over. GM Dealership replaced Starter(twice), battery(twice), alternator,Fuel pump 3 times, Water pump, Serpantine belt, thermostat, plugs, wires, ignition switch, MAP computer under glovebox and said, well after $4,500.00 in the last 10 months, the problem is intermittent and will take approximately 3 days to troubleshoot at $137.00 per hour! GREAT GM car! I do NOT get the security light at all, but, if I wait between 20 min and 1hr, then the car usually starts but you have to open both doors and trunk while someone pushes the trunk up/down to move the fuel in the fuel tank.

- bridgehaven5, Hampton, GA, US

problem #11

Nov 032010

Grand Am GT

  • 80,778 miles


Car lost power while driving, engine would start but not turn over. Definitely a dead fuel pump.

- Sean B., Belleville, ON, Canada

problem #10

Oct 152009

Grand Am GT

  • 59,030 miles

After installing an aftermarket stereo on my GA, the car randomly wouldn't start. Got it towed and diagnosed - something wrong with the passkey in the ignition, had onboard computer reset. Continued happening 2 more times, resolved the same way. The fourth time I decided to try disconnecting the stereo, started right away. I installed a dual-throw switch for the power and battery line to the stereo to virtually disconnect it when issue occurs again. Strangely, it has been over a year now and it hasn't happened again. I guess the small resistance added by the switch was enough to resolve the issue.

- Sean B., Belleville, ON, Canada

problem #9

Feb 052010

Grand Am SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 113,000 miles

Bought this car for my son's first car. Now 2 yrs after owning it having issues with car not starting. Originally started with security light issue and having to do reset process, then all dash warning lights coming on at the same time while driving down the road at 50 mph and going out a few minutes later. Then it started having sporadic issues of not starting without a security light issue. Steadily got worse. Son going back to college with car and didn't want to worry about him being stranded 2 states away. Paid $345 to have iginition switch replaced after seeing another website with same complaints and thought this would resolve problem. That was a month and half ago, my son tells me he has had 3 instances of car not starting in the last 2 weeks.

What is up with this car and why can't anyone fix this electrical problem? Wish I had seen these complaints before I bought this stupid car (we've replaced rotors, water pump and catalytic converter on this car already also). I feel duped from the consumer car reviews I researched before buying this car.

- Renee N., Battle Ground, WA, US

problem #8

Dec 092009

Grand Am 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,357 miles

ok, It is a waste of 900.00 to the dealer, I had the same issue two days later. After bringing it back to the dealer 3 times. I was told it was the battery. New battery same issue 4 days later. Worked on the car myself, It is a bad wire between the ingition switch and fuse box. Had to splice it.

- Ron W., Ocean Springs, MS, US

problem #7

Feb 122010

Grand Am 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles


Sometimes car starts, other times she won't until about 10 trys or so. Mechanic said he got a security code on the computer and changed out the ignition switch with the chip in it, Said that the the fuel pump was fine. She still has the same problem.

- wrongtime, Waukesha, WI, US

problem #6

Aug 012009

Grand Am SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 116,000 miles

After months of fighting with the dealer about the problem (it started everytime i had it towed there) i finally narrowed it down to condensation being linked to it not starting. after a month in the shop they came back with... condensation forming under the sunroof and it was draining down onto the BCM module, shorting it out, until the moisture dried out. thats why the problem only exisited when i had to leave for work early in the morning.

- lebret86, Elyria, OH, US

problem #5

Mar 242009

Grand Am 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,472 miles

My car was fine until the weather started getting hotter. On a real hot day the car don't seem to start. I realized that when I turn the ignition to on the fuel pump doesn't come on line. Usually you will be able to hear the pump running before you turn your key start.

I have to turn off and on for about three to four times before I hear the pump run and then the car starts. If I don't wait for the pump to run the car will not start. When I first realized this problem last summer, I brought the car to the mechanic, he told me to change the fuel pump. That cost me 700 bucks. Then the problem came back a week later and this time he told me to change the ignition switch. Another 300 bucks for that.

Now since the weather is getting hotter, the same symptoms appear. I will just wait for the pump to run, before I start. Does anyone has a solution for this?

- Vijeyand P., Tucson, AZ, US

problem #4

Oct 022008

Grand Am SE2 3400 V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

Last week I was in a hurry to leave and go to a meeting. I got into my 2003 Pontiac Grand Am, which has been absolutely flawless since I purchased her, and turned the key and absolutely nothing. All the lights came on as if everything was okay, but no clicking or or starter sound. I took her to a mechanic and was told it was the starter, that costs 175.00 bucks, plus labor. I was waiting there and noticed that the car did the same thing after he installed the starter. I was really pissed now as my old starter was already switched out for the core charge. So I went outside to smoke and walk off my anger. I came back in and it was running! Yahooo! Well, two days later, the same thing happened, so I located the fix on my own, and it turns out it was the magnet inside the ignition switch goes bad, so there is a bypass solution!!!!! It worked great, read everything and make sure that the car is ON!!!! Very important. Good luck to everyone that has this problem, and it really is a easy fix, took me about three hours to do it slowly, I will take pictures for anyone who needs them. I love this car, and hope I can keep it for many more miles! Remember, this is a GM problem, so it happens on many of their other automobiles. At least it is an easy fix.


- adamyoung913, West Palm Beach, FL, US

problem #3

May 012008

Grand Am

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,000 miles

About two months ago I couldn't get my 2003 Pontiac Grand Am to start. The mechanics worked on it, but the next day I had the same problem. I have taken the car to the shop many times and they can't seem to fix it. Sometimes the car starts right up like nothing is wrong with it and other times it takes several tries. A friend suggested that it wasn't getting fuel. I'm not sure if that's the problem or not but if anyone knows how to fix this PLEASE contact me!

- jfreeman2, Hector, AR, US

problem #2

Feb 112008

Grand Am 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 56,000 miles

I ran some errands and went back home to get something - parked in front of my house, when I came back car wouldn't start. It's turning over, but there doesn't seem to be any juice to it. Checked battery - all o.k. Neighbor thought it might be the fuel pump - had it towed to repair shop next morning (after trying to start it again!!! with same lackluster results). Got a call from the repair shop 1/2 hr later wanting to know what's wrong with it - it started just fine with them. They kept the car for 2 days and used it to run errands, etc....they were unable to duplicate the problem. Finally, I had my son pick it up and park it in fron of my office bldg. 1 hour later......same problem - car won't start - returned it to repair shop...........you guessed it: They couldn't duplicate the problem - they kept it for 3 days this time. Finally took the dam thing home (of course it started just fine form there) and drove it about 14 miles to my house. No problem. Let my son borrow it - 20 min later got a call........the dam thing lost power while going uphill and finally died while going downhill. It's now parked waiting to be towed to the DEALERSHIP - probably waste of time - I'm sure they also can't duplicate the problem.... maybe it's my son or myself and NOT THE CAR!!!! (

- grandamdame, Oceansdie, CA, US

problem #1

Jun 082007

Grand Am V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,000 miles

Car would not start when hot, gauges erratically worked...Well it is pretty bad when a ignition switch goes bad under 50k miles, my 1969 Firebird never had a ignition switch go bad, another example of pitiful workmanship and below average parts manufacturing associated with American cars these days. I sad day in America. So far this Pontiac Grand Am is a real piece of junk so I would recommend to anyone DO NOT PURCHASE A 2003 PONTIAC GRAND AM unless you can afford a minimum of 200.00 per month in unexpected maintenance.

- Robert S., Gulf Shores, AL, US

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