View Full Version : My HHR Won't Shift Out Of Park, Help!


HHRNewbie
01-30-2010, 02:00 AM
Wow, I can't believe this...sadly we have yet, another problem, with our HHR ~ at first, it seemed like it was shifting "hard", when I was on my way to go pick up my Mom, early Friday evening ~ I was hoping it wasn't a sign of something yet to come, but apparently it was, because after once stopping, and turning off, the car, at my Mom's house, later in the evening, when I went to go home, it wouldn't shift out of PARK for ANYTHING ~ my key did not get stuck, in the ignition or anything (I've been reading of some HHR owner's having that problem?)~ but again, it would not shift at ALL, I had to have it towed to the dealership, and will have to wait, to hear, what the deal is~ I'm truly starting to wonder if our car is a lemon, we've NEVER, EVER, had these many problems with a car with 60K miles, and only a little over 3 years old, before in over 10 years :eek: So far we've had the power steering go completely, out on us (which our dealership repaired/replaced just last month, of course it wasn't under warranty!), now we can't shift out of park, and even drive the car, ugh! :roll: If anyone has had experience with this situation/problem please post here, I'd love to know of any tips or possible help, thanks so much! :D
I forgot to add, it's an LS/2006 if that helps! :wink:

HHRNewbie
01-30-2010, 08:24 AM
I see I've had 22 views, can't anyone help me with this issue? :( I'm so worried about what might be wrong, any possible help would be awesome!!

davidjb
01-30-2010, 09:11 AM
sorry for your problem it sounds like a linkage issue,was it on level ground?

asanti
01-30-2010, 10:28 AM
^^ Agreed w/ davidjb, was the HHR on level ground, or was it at some type of incline?

Silly question, but is it a manual or auto tranny? Was the fluid ever checked if it was a manual? I know you can't check or change the trans fluid in the auto yourself, that typically "should" last you 100K miles. Even outside temperature "MAY" have an affect on vehicles left outdoors. If the car started up, did you let it warm up enough to let the tranny fluid warm up to operating temp.??? All things to consider when troubleshooting a problem. Hope some of this helps!

Later
Allex

HHRNewbie
01-30-2010, 10:30 AM
Hi, yes, it was on level ground- Parked on a regular side street! What do you mean when you say a linkage issue, thanks for your help!! :D
Hi Asanti, sorry just now saw your post as well- It's an automatic, if that helps - was able to start the car up easily, but no, didn't run it for more than 4-5 minutes. It was very cold last night, maybe 15 degrees, could that have any effect? Thanks for your help! It's currently at the dealership, they'll be running a test on it free of charge, this afternoon, praying for the best!! :)

asanti
01-30-2010, 10:31 AM
One more thing to consider: with the outside temps being as cold as they are (I see you're in OH) did you happen to drive through any large puddles or snow? There's an OFF chance the linkages may have frozen if they were waterlogged.... I'm just brainstorming here for ya, but that did happen to me before when I owned my Mustang. I had to let the car sit over 45 min while everything warmed up enough to "loosen". :D

Allex

asanti
01-30-2010, 10:36 AM
Hi, yes, it was on level ground- Parked on a regular side street! What do you mean when you say a linkage issue, thanks for your help!! :D

If you've a manual tranny, the linkages might have popped loose, so you can't "shift" out of park or go into any gear basically (those w/ a manual can chime in). In an auto, parking on an incline CAN put enough strain on the tranny to not easily let it shift out of Park.

Later
Allex

ChevyMgr
01-30-2010, 10:50 AM
I believe he is saying the shifter won't come out of park. Which would indicate it's a shifter problem.

HHRNewbie
01-30-2010, 10:55 AM
I feel silly asking, LOL, but I'm assuming auto means, not a shift, that's what a manual is, right? LOL! Ours is an automatic, I'm sure (not stick shift), so the linkeage issue probably doesn't apply? We had a wheel bearing replaced earlier that day, not sure if that could be an issue ? Don't think we drove through any puddles or snow worth mentioning! :)
To answer the above post, yes it's the shifter that won't come out of park!!

asanti
01-30-2010, 11:37 AM
OK so if it's the shifter not moving (auto= automatic transmission! sorry lol), it's been said that if any liquids have been (accidentally) spilled on the shifter, that can happen. If not there may be a problem with one of the rods in the shift linkage.

HHRNewbie
01-30-2010, 12:55 PM
OK so if it's the shifter not moving (auto= automatic transmission! sorry lol), it's been said that if any liquids have been (accidentally) spilled on the shifter, that can happen. If not there may be a problem with one of the rods in the shift linkage.

Yes, that's what they're saying happened, that it "looks" as though liquid of some kind, at some point, was spilled on the shifter....~sigh~ :( I'm always very careful when I have any type of beverage, in our car, to be honest I almost always have a small plastic bottle of 7-Up, that I have the cap on if I'm not drinking, or again, something else such as Snapple, again with the cap on if I'm not drinking, lol, so I honestly can't place "when" it might have happened ~ who really knows....but, I'm wondering if what they're telling me is true, that it could even have happened quite some time ago (? not sure if that might mean a few months even??), and it just now finally "shorted" out the shifter mechanism~ does anyone know if that's at all possible? :confused:
Needless to say, it was too much of a disruptive experience already, to have it towed from my Mom's last night, to the dealership, so we've decided to just have the dealership install a new one...though, of course, I'm sure if we had the actual time/patience/towings available, lol, we might find another mechanic/garage that would be able to charge somewhat less (dealership charging the highest amount for labor, than anyone else, has always been my experience!)~ the other question is, how soon would they be able to get the part, and would they also charge for a diagnosis, fee (at least our dealership DID waive that, for us, though this shifter is NOT covered since we don't have an extended warranty?), which then would up the price!
I spoke to our mechanic that we normally go, to, and he said he would have to do another diagnosis, "to see what is going on", which ups the cost, when THEY would look at it (that seems silly if I already know, it's the shifter, lol!), one way or another....I swear they get ya coming and going...lol! Oh well, at least we will have the HHR back this evening....thanks so much y'all for your help!! :thumb:

fringeIT
01-30-2010, 04:09 PM
You said you had a wheel bearing replaced that day. MAYBE whoever moved the vehicle accidently spilled something.

ChevyMgr
01-30-2010, 04:21 PM
Soda's are an HHR shift assemblies worst enemy. Just like the sugar or sugar products are not good for us they also do bad things to the shifters.

I know it doesn't help the pain of paying for the shifter, but they did redesign the replacement shifters to help stop this from happening.

HHRNewbie
01-31-2010, 12:55 AM
Soda's are an HHR shift assemblies worst enemy. Just like the sugar or sugar products are not good for us they also do bad things to the shifters.

I know it doesn't help the pain of paying for the shifter, but they did redesign the replacement shifters to help stop this from happening.

That's interesting, I did comment to the hubby, that the new shifter did seem different, in design/appearance ~ how is it supposed to help stop the (possible/accidental) spillage problem? :confused: I was going to ask if anyone knew, lol, of any type of "cover" or item, that you could maybe buy to place over/around the shifter~ doubt that is possible or at all practical ~ LOL!
I really believe my Mom or I, at one time or another, spilled a little pop, though it's really hard to try and pinpoint it, and the service dept. technician said it could have even occurred, quite some time ago, and just now shorted it out ~ believe me lesson learned.....will be extremely careful from here on out!! I don't remember having to be this careful with the shifter in our other GM (Olds Alero), but apparently the HHR shifter assembly is much more delicate? :frown:

HHRNewbie
01-31-2010, 01:00 AM
You said you had a wheel bearing replaced that day. MAYBE whoever moved the vehicle accidently spilled something.

Honestly, in the end I think my Mom or I, more than likely, spilled something, I don't think it was our mechanic at all, he's very careful ~ I will definitely be more careful from now on, ugh!! :eek: I wish I knew though, if it's possible that it could have developed from a spill that occurred over time (that's what the mechanic at our service dept. claimed), does anyone know (ie., as opposed to having a very recent spill)? :confused: