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Go Back   Chevy HHR Network > General Discussion > Problems/Service/Repairs > "Engine Disabled" & "Eng Pwr Reduced"
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Problems/Service/Repairs If you have a problem with your HHR, want a tip on repairing or performing a particular service to you HHR here is the place to post!

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Old 10-26-2006, 07:26 AM   #1
da_loca
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Angry "Engine Disabled" & "Eng Pwr Reduced"

I have a 2006 2.2 1LT/automatic, purchased on 6/30/06, and it now has 5900 miles on it. Hubby and I were out of town last night, stopped to eat. On our way out, I remote started the car, got into the car, and it died. Tried starting the car, and nothing! Turned the key to read the DIC and "ENG PWR REDUCED" and "ENGINE DISABLED" appeared. I've never seen THAT before! Hmm... what to do. Got out of the car, locked it with key fob, unlocked with key fob, tried starting with the key, and nothing again. I called a friend who has the same car (except his is a 2.4) but he hasn't ever had that happen to him. Called Roadside Assistance... at 1:00am, they are of little assistance. The rep suggested that I get of out the car and manually hold the key in the "unlock" position for about 20 secs, then turn it to "lock"... wait for headlights to flash, which she says means it reset itself. Nothing happened. She suggested turning the key in the ignition to the first click for about 10 secs after doing this manual stuff... and see if it resets itself. Did this about 3 times.. waiting 10 mins in between just in case a miracle happened, but to no avail. She also mentioned that this may not work with all vehicles. I asked which ones and she couldn't say. Called Roadside Assistance again, but this rep knew nothing about the handy dandy tricks to start the car. A tow truck came and the driver played around with the gears a little, put it in neutral and it started. He drove it around the lot a bit and just as we were going to leave, the car started sputtering and the engine sounded funky and died. He suggested we tow it to the dealer, which we did. I will be contacting the dealer in the morning to see what they'll do. I printed TSB 06-06-03-003A for the 2.4L to show to the dealer tomorrow; don't know if this also applies to the 2.2L.

Has this "ENGINE DISABLED" / "ENG PWR REDUCED" thing ever happened to anyone else? I'm assuming the car 'thought' someone was trying to steal it. I hope it just takes some sort of reprogramming to fix it. Thank goodness it's under warranty but what a hassle!

We got home at 3:00am. The only good thing was that the tow truck driver was kind enough to give us a lift home. Anyways, I'm just frustrated right now. Any input would be very much appreciated!
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Old 10-26-2006, 07:38 AM   #2
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That does sound like a late night headache. Sorry to hear it. Let us know what was wrong.
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Old 10-26-2006, 08:26 AM   #3
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wow wierd

your car si esta loca, loca
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Old 10-26-2006, 10:16 AM   #4
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I wonder if it could have been something in the key fob? There is an anti theft device built into these cars and the key fob has to be matched to the car. I wonder if a strong magnet could unprogram the key fob?
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Old 10-26-2006, 01:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by da_loca
I have a 2006 2.2 1LT/automatic, purchased on 6/30/06, and it now has 5900 miles on it. Hubby and I were out of town last night, stopped to eat. On our way out, I remote started the car, got into the car, and it died. Tried starting the car, and nothing! Turned the key to read the DIC and "ENG PWR REDUCED" and "ENGINE DISABLED" appeared. I've never seen THAT before! Hmm... what to do. Got out of the car, locked it with key fob, unlocked with key fob, tried starting with the key, and nothing again. I called a friend who has the same car (except his is a 2.4) but he hasn't ever had that happen to him. Called Roadside Assistance... at 1:00am, they are of little assistance. The rep suggested that I get of out the car and manually hold the key in the "unlock" position for about 20 secs, then turn it to "lock"... wait for headlights to flash, which she says means it reset itself. Nothing happened. She suggested turning the key in the ignition to the first click for about 10 secs after doing this manual stuff... and see if it resets itself. Did this about 3 times.. waiting 10 mins in between just in case a miracle happened, but to no avail. She also mentioned that this may not work with all vehicles. I asked which ones and she couldn't say. Called Roadside Assistance again, but this rep knew nothing about the handy dandy tricks to start the car. A tow truck came and the driver played around with the gears a little, put it in neutral and it started. He drove it around the lot a bit and just as we were going to leave, the car started sputtering and the engine sounded funky and died. He suggested we tow it to the dealer, which we did. I will be contacting the dealer in the morning to see what they'll do. I printed TSB 06-06-03-003A for the 2.4L to show to the dealer tomorrow; don't know if this also applies to the 2.2L.

Has this "ENGINE DISABLED" / "ENG PWR REDUCED" thing ever happened to anyone else? I'm assuming the car 'thought' someone was trying to steal it. I hope it just takes some sort of reprogramming to fix it. Thank goodness it's under warranty but what a hassle!

We got home at 3:00am. The only good thing was that the tow truck driver was kind enough to give us a lift home. Anyways, I'm just frustrated right now. Any input would be very much appreciated!
This happened to me after I killed my battery by leaving my parking lights on.

After getting a jump, I got the engine sputter routine and the same engine power reduced message. I was afraid to shut if off, because roadside assistant left (they told me just to let it sputter for a while and eventually it would stop after the battery had a chance to recharge...WRONG!). I let it sputter for a half hour before I got the dealer on the phone. They told me to cycle the power by shutting it off, and turning it back on. It started up normal, but check engine light was on.

Drove to the dealer that I called and had them take a look. They couldn't find anything and told me that my CE light was because of a loose gas cap! The computer returned nothing. Haven't had the problem since, but Im still clueless about WTF happened...
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Old 10-26-2006, 04:09 PM   #6
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I have a 2lt and i had eng power reduced when i turn the wheel and hit gas pedal. mine was first hhr with that kinda problem and the dealer with help of gm had to rewire it. I think it was a power steering module problem. Not a thing i want to be in.
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Old 10-26-2006, 04:23 PM   #7
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Well, the dealer called bright and early this morning... and had me describe all of last night's lovely happenings. She says she started the car this morning, and ran it for about 2 mins and says it seemed fine. I told her about the engine sputtering and she said they would "check it out" and she'd reset those gawd-awful messages and will call me before the end of the day. So..... stay tuned. As far as I know, they may tell me that last night was all just a figment of my imagination!

One thing for sure though, I will be reluctant to use the auto start from now on in fear of the "engine disabled" fiasco ever happening again!

Roadside assistance... liars. They said that towing to my hometown, Vallejo, would be no money out of my pocket. Destination to the dealership was about 5 miles over the 20 miles allowed, so there goes $60.00. Cha-ching! I want that money back! We also had a friend with us, who couldn't go with us in the tow truck, so there goes another $60.00 for cabfare to get him home.... cha-ching!! I suppose that money is pretty much gone.

I will keep you updated. Thanks for all your input, everyone. Mi carro es muy loca!
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Old 10-26-2006, 09:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by da_loca
Well, the dealer called bright and early this morning... and had me describe all of last night's lovely happenings. She says she started the car this morning, and ran it for about 2 mins and says it seemed fine. I told her about the engine sputtering and she said they would "check it out" and she'd reset those gawd-awful messages and will call me before the end of the day. So..... stay tuned. As far as I know, they may tell me that last night was all just a figment of my imagination!

One thing for sure though, I will be reluctant to use the auto start from now on in fear of the "engine disabled" fiasco ever happening again!

Roadside assistance... liars. They said that towing to my hometown, Vallejo, would be no money out of my pocket. Destination to the dealership was about 5 miles over the 20 miles allowed, so there goes $60.00. Cha-ching! I want that money back! We also had a friend with us, who couldn't go with us in the tow truck, so there goes another $60.00 for cabfare to get him home.... cha-ching!! I suppose that money is pretty much gone.

I will keep you updated. Thanks for all your input, everyone. Mi carro es muy loca!
Check your insurance coverage. you may be entitled to a $50.00 reimbursement for towing and labor if you elected to add it to your policy.
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Old 10-27-2006, 02:46 PM   #9
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Aaah!.. didn't think of that. I'll check my policy. Thanks for lookin' out!
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Old 10-27-2006, 05:56 PM   #10
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Update... dealership says after doing a full diagnostics check, they found out that the battery had a bad cell. They're waiting for a new one and will clear the DIC messages and hopefully, I will be able to pick up my baby before closing today!

Unfortunately, I don't have towing on my insurance policy, so no chance of getting any moolah back that way. I think I should be reimbursed for any out of pocket expenses, seeing as I was given a new car with a jacked up battery... dontcha think?
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