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2004 Classic Malibu Anti Theft System

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2004 Classic Malibu Anti Theft System

Postby makkapitew91 » Sat Nov 28, 2015 11:25 am


About 2 months ago I went to get into my Malibu and it wouldn't crank. I was turning over just wouldn't catch. After a couple of days of calling around i was told to stick the key in turn it to on wait 10 min and then it would start. I did and it started. I got it to a mechanic and was told to replace the switch. I did this and it started everytime for about 3 weeks. Sometimes while driving now the light will come on and after turning the engine off sometimes it start and sometimes wont after the light has come on. I never know when it start or wont now. I'm having to "reset" the anti theft 3 or 4 times a week to get it started. Noone around here seems to have a clue whats going on, can you help me?

ANSWER: Hello,

I only partially understand what you are trying to say. You state the engine won't crank, but it wouldn't "Catch."

You were given bad info on the reset which is real common because it seems no one knows how to reprogram this system. You leave the ignition on 10 min. Turn off, turn on for 10 minutes, turn off and turn on for 10 min. This is a 30 minute process, not 10.

You state the mechanic changed the switch, but which switch? The mechanical lock cylinder where the key goes in or the electrical ignition switch? The key/lock cylinder is not the ignition switch.

As for the light coming on, there is something wrong and a fault code will be present. You need to go to a service center or a dealer with a Tech II scanner that can plug it into your car and read the diagnostic error codes in order to fix it.

I hate parts changers that call themselves mechanics. Get the vehicle scanned and you will find out exactly what the problem is.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------


Sorry I wasn't clear. When I stick the key in and turn it act as if it going to start but doesn't.

The mechanic chaged my switch in the dash, the one the key goes into.

Thanks for all your help!
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 1:29 am

2004 Classic Malibu Anti Theft System

Postby Putnam » Mon Nov 30, 2015 9:24 pm


The part he changed is the ignition lock cylinder. The lock cylinder fits into the ignition switch. The electrical ignition switch is where the security is located. The ignition lock is rotated with a key. The ignition lock cylinder has a magnet on it that passes past the electrical ignition switch when rotated and energizes a magnetic field. The vehicle's computer sees the rotation of the lock and the engine will start. There is no special ignition key. You can get one made at a hardware store,. The system in my opinion is a joke as it relates to theft prevention, but you can bet if the car gets stolen and you file a theft claim with the insurance company, they will deny your claim and accuse you of being part of the theft because according to these ignorant insurance people and their crack experts, the car is unstealable. Happens all the time.

One thing I do run across very commonly because of this system is grease. Graphite grease is commonly used in the ignition lock. It has no outer housing and spays this grease inside the ignition switch housing, eventually blocking the signal for the vehicle's computer to see the rotation of the lock. Changing the lock sometimes temporarly fixes a no-start problem, but other problems still exist if this grease has not been completely cleaned out from the ignition switch the lock is rotating in.

Just ran across same situation for no start. Mechanic changed lock and car started, but security light was on. He removed the lock. Cleaned the housing out with brake cleaner and a rag. Reinstalled and everything was fine.

Just a guess in which your mechanic may want to check this out.

Good luck and if my answer helps, please feel free to rate me.


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Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:22 pm

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