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The key in my 2010 Chevy HHR automatic will not turn back to the OFF position. It is stuck in the RUN position with the car on.

What is the cause of this problem? How can I shut off the car?

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Easiest way to turn it off in my opinion was to open the column and pull (not cut) the wiring harness that connects the car to the key cylinder. You can put it right back in, but the car will definitely shut off.' –  JonnyRo Jun 21 '13 at 15:36

2 Answers 2

Shift out of and back into park a few times, and try to wiggle the shifter around park while you try to turn the key out. This would be the 'usual' reason the key would be stuck in.

Next, try moving the steering wheel slightly, while again trying to back out the key.

If that's not it, is there a button you need to press to release the key? If so, push it in and out a few times while trying to remove the key.

All of these should lock the key between Accessory, Run, and Start though, and none of them should stick it in the On position.

If it's really stuck running, and you can't remove the key, you have a few options:

  • Open the hood and pull spark plugs until it stalls (or remove the connectors from the coil packs)
  • Open the hood and pull fuses until it stalls (Main, INJ or Injectors, Head, Fuel or Fuel Pump fuses would all be good candidates). Remember to put them back in the right spots.
  • Open the hood and pull vacuum lines until it stalls.
  • Pull fuses from the interior fuse box until it stalls (Ignition, Fuel or Fuel Pump, Run would all be good ones to try)
  • Pull the MAF sensor if you know where to find it
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I ended up pulling the cover underneath the steering column and pulling out the connector to the key cylinder. The vehicle instantly shut off. –  JonnyRo Aug 21 '12 at 21:36
    
I have read the fuel pump fuse works as well. –  JonnyRo Aug 21 '12 at 21:36
up vote 1 down vote accepted

It looks like there is an open bulletin on the 2010 Chevy HHR. The sensor that reports whether or not the vehicle is in park (inside the gear shift) can easily break.

Took it into the chevy dealership, they fixed it for free.

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