Electrical Seizure - Chevy Cobalt Forum / Cobalt Reviews / Cobalt SS / Cobalt Parts
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-07-2018, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
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Electrical Seizure

Hi all!

This is a bit of a read, but I'm having an electrical issue on my Cobalt and I'm stumped.

I have a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt 2LT that was salvage at one point, but repaired. I know the previous owner, and the car had no issues. Early May this year I agreed to buy the car off of him. No issues. Week and a half later, I hit a deer and bent the passenger fender, broke the windshield, bent the outer metal of the passenger front door, effectively breaking glass and jamming it.

Early August I got a door from a donor car, transplanted the harness and the side airbag sensor. I also straightened the fender and obviously had the windshield replaced. I also upgraded the stereo, and put a noise filter on both the factory amp and in the adapter harness of the Axxess GMOS-LAN-04 to try to get rid of some alternator whine.

Two weeks later I'm at the local gas station where I live and when I went to crank the car, it wouldn't turn, the lights, locks, and marker lights all started randomly turning on and off very briefly over and over. Key was stuck in the ignition like when the car looses power with the key in it. I unplugged the positive battery terminal from the engine bay fuse block for a few minutes, unplugged the aftermarket stereo and Axxess adapter, and after plugging the positive on the fuse block back in with the stereo out, the car cranked and I was on my way.

Four days later there was heavy rain, I left work, made one stop, and then turned the car back on and left. Not even a tenth of a mile later the car shut off hard and I coasted to the side safely. Again, car wouldn't crank and the key was stuck in the ignition like when the car looses power. I left the car off for a minute and the car turned, so I wrote it off as another weird issue. Start driving and not even ten feet after, another hard shutdown. This time, the lights, locks and whatnot started going in and out again, key stuck in the ignition and it wouldn't turn. I unplugged the fuse block positive wire and had the car towed home. The car did not have a stereo plugged in, or the Axxess adapter since the last time it happened. Here's what was going on inside the car while the lights and locks were having a party.

This car is up to date on recalls and service bulletins as far as my friend and I are aware. I have not removed the noise filter from the factory amp. One suspicious thing to note is that the donor door had a water line on the glass but the door didn't look like it was submerged at any point. I did keep the power lock and window units from the donor door.

I have taken the entire dash out to look at wiring and I have seen no bare wires, touching wires, or bad grounds inside the dash, the passenger side kick panel fuseboxes and harnesses, and the center console harnesses. I turned the car on the other day with just the gauge cluster plugged in and it ran while parked fine for about 25 minutes.

I'm at a loss here. Any help or pointers are appreciated!
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-08-2018, 07:46 AM
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Are both battery post tight? You are simply losing power!

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-08-2018, 07:48 AM Thread Starter
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Electrical Seizure

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coby7 View Post
Are both battery post tight? You are simply losing power!
Posts are tight. I'll take the battery in to get check for good measure!

Though I am curious, would that cause it to shut off while driving?
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-08-2018, 07:50 AM
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You can check the battery in your car if you have a multimeter. Just turn the lights on with high beams, monitor battery voltage for 30 seconds , it should stay at 12.3 for this period.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-08-2018, 08:22 AM Thread Starter
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Should I find the original bulbs? There's a compact LED in there right now, and I'm willing to bet the voltage would be different. Unless I should just be checking it doesn't dip below 12.3V.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-08-2018, 08:47 AM
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Or turn the HVAC fan on to max, you just need a load to make sure the cells are all good.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-09-2018, 04:57 AM
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Also check that the Boost Post is nice and tight…..
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-10-2018, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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Replaced the battery and clean up posts and negative points I could find. I don't know how to get at the one under the coolant expansion tank, though, and that one actually needs cleaning more than the others... It's rusty.

Also, I seem to somehow have either popped a fuse or disconnected the HVAC game when I took the dash apart, so I'll have to figure that out too. Other than that, the car seems to be working fine right now. Any ideas on the reservoir or the HVAC fan?

Thanks for the assistance!
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