Grand Am Passlock System NOT Relearning!

Bill Slavin

Asked by Dec 18, 2015 at 12:12 AM about the 1998 Pontiac Grand Am 2 Dr GT Coupe

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Okay so I have a 98'  Pontiac Grand am 3.1l v6.
I had to replace my ignition lock cylinder.
Now I cannot get the passlock system to relearn.
The "Theft" light comes on, flashes quickly and
then stays solid.
The theft light DOES NOT turn off at all.
I did the 30 minute relearn process with no luck.
I tried it multiple ways which I will now list.
Start the car, stalls out, LEAVING key in the run
position wait 10-15 minutes (14 I've been doing)
Then turn key back for 5 or 10 seconds (done both)
Not working.
Next, BUMP the key into run NOT STARTING and
leave it in the run position for 12-15 minutes (14)
Turn key back to the off position for 5/10 seconds.
Do it 3 times TOTAL.
I've also tried doing this but instead of waiting 5/10
seconds on the 3rd try wait 30 seconds.
NOT working.
Also was told to try starting the car, letting it stall,
leaving key in run position for 15 minutes and then
turning key to off position for 5 minutes, doing this
What am I doing wrong??
If you have ANY idea that'll help that'd be
awesome. The dealership says to do it how I am
doing it and it should work, but it's not. I was told
to clear the DTCs with a tech2 tool but they're
$3000 and the dealership wants $100 just to clear
them!! Please help, I spent all my savings on this
car and I do not have the money to take it to the
dealership. Thank you VERY VERY much!!!

PS: Was also told this car could be a 1997 that was
sold as a 1998, not sure if that makes a difference.
Also the door unlock fuses were missing, I
replaced them.
Also there was an aftermarket stereo installed
prior to my ownership.

1 Answer


First of all let me sympathize with you because passlock and electrical issues are very aggrevating and stressful. Let me first say that the ignition housing you put in may have a bad passlock or one that is not making a proper connection which would cause the problem you are describing, basically the car can not learn the new passlock if the new one is not working properly. If you switched it from the old one or still have the old one I would put it back in just so the car can start and clear the codes by itself once it sees the old passlock back in. If you put the old passlock into the new housing then I would check your connection, that little bar above the key lock has to make a connection or the cars ecm will not read it. Just a side note that most Autozone and some other car parts stores have obd readers that they will read the codes and erase for free if you ask them nicely, this will save you the costs.

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