Reset anti theft system on 2001 Chevy Malibu

Stephanie White

Asked by Stephanie Mar 15, 2013 at 01:50 AM about the Chevrolet Malibu

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My 2001 Malibu would not crank. It would turn over but would not crank, as if it wasn't getting fuel. I had this issue about a month ago and my friend changed plugs and wires, checked compression (good), and fuel system (good). The car ran and had no more issues cranking. I came home tonight, had to run to store, got in car to leave and the car did the same thing again. I began to google my symptoms and came across the anti theft issues. I went back to car and sure enough the anti theft light continued to blink., so I camped out in car with key "on", after 10 minutes the car started dinging (like door is open or low on gas) and anti lock light was off, so I tried to start car. It wouldn't start, acted like battery was dead, so I turned key in off position, the gages and head lights (dim) wouldn't go off, so I tried to start it again, thinking it might need to be toggled, but when I tried to start it, the dash went black and headlights went off! I turned key back to off position and dash lit up and all gages went across the dial, then back to normal, car still wouldn't start, no click, anything, and then all went black, like it was turned off. I turned key back off and everyrhing came back on (radio too, door dinging and all)....I wiggled the key until all was off and left it. Any ideas? Why does my car hate me?

15 Answers

Not Active

The 2001 Chevy Malibu uses an anti-theft system to prevent your vehicle from being stolen. The anti-theft system sounds an alarm and cuts power to the ignition if the vehicle is broken into. ..........Insert the ignition key into the driver door lock. Turn the key counterclockwise. Turn the key clockwise to lock the door. Turn the key counterclockwise to unlock the door again. This will shut the alarm off and reset the system.

21 out of 21 people think this is helpful.

Well that anti theft systems works.... No one would want to steal it! -- Some parts of it acts like my '02 Pontiac Grand Am. It has a flashing security light, the ten minute wait and no fuel if the engine is spun. I don't have the door lock procedure that David described or the dash light / headlight black out that Stephanie described. It could be a problem with the body control module (BCM) that controls the electrical loads.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Not Active

I looked at several ways on different sites, and the all were identical or very very close to that procedure for the Malibu, so I just picked the ehow one and pasted it verbatim

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.
Stephanie White

Thank you both so much. It turns out that my battery had some corrosion between terminal and cables, I cleaned it, charged it, and it started. Apparently it was the anti theft device causing the issue that began it and my bad connection caused the drain. It was very frustrating, but I am happy that it didn't cost me a fortune to fix.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
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I love happy endings

Mary Miller

I have the same problem...a friend was selling me her malibu and it has been sitting for 3 or 4 months with a bad battery. we place the battery and still wont start...could it be the anti theft

15 out of 15 people think this is helpful.

If starter cranks engine but it won't start and "anti-theft system" light on dash is blinking then the anti-theft system is preventing fuel from reaching the engine. Just turn the ignition key to on position and wait for approx. 10 minutes and the blinking anti-theft will go off. Turn the key to off and then back to start and the car should start up. This has happened to our 2001 Malibu at least a dozen times over the years.

10 out of 10 people think this is helpful.

IT worked!! woo hoo i am a new mom who did not have the money to pay the dealership 5 to 8 hundred dollars to fix my chevy malibu when my car would not start. i turned the key on for ten min then off. and put the key in drivers door turned left. then right then back left and CAR STARTED.. thanks guys for help

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.
Victor Morgado

What happened to Stephanie and her Malibu happened to me last saturday under an ice rain and without my cell phone..Usually leaving the key turned for 10 minutes would do the job, but this time the power went off completely as a mechanic last year told me that would happened to me one day with this sort problem with the alarm system. The light went off and it came back etc, the it was dead. I was lucky to get an experienced mechanic driving the tow truck that I had to call the next day. This man would not give up in making the car start. After the jump start failed. He told me it was the starter of the car. He took a bar and began to tap hard on the starter right in front of the car. then we gave it a try again and the car started running again. Not only that, but the engine check disappeared as well!. He said that it was a "bad point" in the starter and that it was not necessary to replace it. Figure that out...

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

I have a 2003 Malibu, and the Theft System light keeps coming on and I have to wait 10 minutes to start the car. I never know when it will happen. Why did'nt General Motors recall these cars, suppose I have rush a family member to the hospital or If I am being roobed or harrassed and I can't get away. I will never in life again, buy another car made by General Motors!!!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I have a chevrolet malibu have no signs or emergency lights encuentrna no failure

Michael Beilke

Thank you guys for the help my car today Oct 17 2014 wouldn't start and the anti theft light was on my wife said it was a possible cause 10 minutes on on position 5 seconds off stated right up and no more light!

LeRoy Hemond

bud1944 has the answer. It worked for me and the anti theft light that has been on since I got the car(a year ago) is now off. Wow, I had been trading parts out off a friends old engine and was getting nowhere. Tried the 10 min. in the on position and 5 seconds off and started right up. Now I know to try this if it occurs again instead of paying a large towing fee! bud1944 his post is on this page! Thank you bud1944

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Archie Loughrey

how do you do 2 keys

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Thanks Guys and Gals, I was having a frustrating time trying to start the "energy star" Malibu. I was about to pull the fuel pump when I noticed that the "anti theft" light was blinking. Remembering somewhere in the receses of my mind that GM had a "bait car" type anti theft system many years ago, I happened upon this forum and followed the 10 minute on, two seconds off restart procedure and the Malibu fired right up....WHEW!!! what a relief!

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