Bit of an introduction: I'm a college student with very little experience in car maintenance. I changed a tire once, and that's about it. But I'm willing to Google things and get my hands dirty, ha.
So last Monday, I bought a 2005 Chevy Cobalt Coupe from a coworker (my first car!). I had my car-savvy friend take a look at it with me, and he said everything seemed good. I hadn't driven it much till Saturday, when I finally got plates on it. Later that day, I took it out on the highway, and everything seemed fine.
Then the DIC popped up with "POWER STEERING" and my speedometer stopped working. Power steering seemed fine, although maybe a bit stiff? I turned around, and on the way back I noticed it seemed to not shift gears up as much as it should. I borrowed my friend's OBD-II scanner and it came back with a U0101 code, lost communication to transmission control module. I talked to the guy I bought it from, and he said that had never happened to him. I asked him about the power steering recall, and he said he had never received anything about it. I checked the VIN on Chevy's website, and there are no outstanding recalls for the car.
So I've been doing a lot of searching, and found a decent amount of people experiencing the same problem. The most common solution people mentioned was grounding the TCM to the chassis. That didn't work for me. I also checked all the applicable fuses, jiggled the BCM and TCM connectors and looked at them--they all looked fine. I also disconnected the negative terminal of the battery and let it sit for a while; no luck there, either. Clearing the codes got rid of the power steering message for maybe a minute, but it came back.
The next two things I'm planning on trying are cleaning the ground bolt for the TCM (G105), as that was suggested in this thread
, and looking at it, it is a bit rusty. And then I was going to try pulling out the after-market stereo the previous owner installed, since someone mentioned there's a connection between the stereo and the car's computer (plus, the power to the stereo is a bit sporadic anyway).
So.... does anyone here have any suggestions for what to try? I haven't taken it to a shop (judging from others' experiences, it doesn't help much and is expensive--college student here
), but I'm willing to work on it and I have some other, more experienced friends who could probably help me out.