1996 Cadillac Passkey Problem

GM Passkey chip in the key. Used on older GM cars and trucks for the security system that causes your vehicle to not start.

My 1996 Cadillac says theft system problem and car will not start.

You probably have a bad ignition cylinder in your Cadillac.

Can I take care of that on my own?

Are you capable of disassembling the steering column?


It also requires quite a few special tools. But if you are capable, go for it. Not entirely a hard job. The wires to the Pass Key cylinder are probably broken and that is what is setting the theft deterrent system off.

Does it cost alot of money. and how hard is it to do? I have had it to the dealership and they said they fixed it cost about 1000$, then the altenator ground wire came off but I put it back on. worked for a little while but now is entirely not starting, had someone tell me to wait 10 min and keep trying but to no available. VERY FRUSTRATING!!!!

The 10 minute relearn doesn’t work on your style of car, it’s too old. You have the PASSKEY system, the wires break on the cylinder from turning for so many years and finally breaking. The cylinder is under $200, but it requires a new ignition key made to your specific PassKey code. Those keys are about $45 each.

Is there any way to just take the whole theft system out?GM Passkey chip in the key. Used on older GM cars and trucks for the security system that causes your vehicle to not start.

No, there is not.

Because its on the key right?

How can I repair a code DTC 53 on a Cadillac Deville?

ProTech: What year Cadillac?


Ok that code is for a distributor interrupt signal problem…..that can be caused by the sensor inside the distributor or a wiring problem. You might want to try to find a rebuilt distributor to install.

So a whole new distributor would be best (or rebuilt)?

Usually that is the way to go…a rebuilt distributor would be a bit cheaper, you may not be able to find a brand new one anymore.

Alright. Thank you soo much for your time and patience. Merry Christmas and a happy New year.

Same to you! Have a great night!

OK. I also have a 1994 Pontiac Bonneville, the alternator is good, BRAND NEW BATTERY, all lights come on BUT clicks like battery is DEAD. What would cause that? SDtarter good too. Someone told me it was the flywheel.

About the Bonneville, if it’s just clicking when you try to start, you either have a dead battery or a bad starter, or the wiring inbetween the two.

Just bought battery tonight..so know its not that I just replaced the starter last week, does the starter have to sit a certain way? or maybe its own mount? the guy that fixed the starter told me to get brackets because it didnt sit right!

There are no brackets for the starter…just the two bolts that go into the block. Maybe you’ve got a broken flywheel? That or the new starter is junk already.

Why would he put shimmies in then? Starter not right one?

Shims should only be used if they came WITH the new starter.

Thank you I will probably talk with someone tomorrow about this also..thanks again.

Your welcome.