Question about 2011 Chevrolet HHR

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Why do esc, traction, and engine lights turn on?

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Randy Ohler

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Check the engine codes first. Some codes will shut down the ESC and traction. Then Traction codes will shut down ESC. With out codes we just guess.

Posted on Mar 12, 2016

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Sounds like your brake fluid is low, or one of the wheel speed sensors is dead.

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You will need to find the trouble code for malfunctioning wheel speed sensor. The Powertrain control module thinks that there is a wheel spinning or slipping, which in turns retards ignition timing to limit the slip. It could be a bad sensor or a broken wire harness. Some parts houses can give you the code, but you will either have to take it in to a Certified Technician, or diagnose it yourself if you are qualified.

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I had this problem with my 2007 HHR. I drove away with the service engine and the service traction light on. The car was stuttering through the gears. I took it back and they checked it. They disconnect some wires while they change the oil and one was loose. The service engine turned off but the service traction stayed on. We disconnected the battery for 3 minutes and it fixed the problem. Some of those other guys spent up to 300 dollars to fix the problem. Hope it works out for you.

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2 Answers

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Take it in to see which wheel is throwing the code. Some auto part stores let you use theirs for free. then check for corroded connectors or broken wires at the wheel bearings and speed sensors.
Clean corroded connections with a cleaner such as contax or acid wheel cleaner, then rinse and dry thoroughly and coat the female end of the connection with dielectric grease before reassembly.

Best of luck. These are GREAT cars!!!

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