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2000-2011 Chevrolet Malibu



  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    No I don't use gas treatments for my car. She uses regular gasoline and that's all the ever makes it into her engine. However if I ever needed them I would use them, they seem to be harmless. I used it in my beretta once a year but found it to be unnecessary so I don't use it in my Malibu.


    Forgot to mention that the 3.1 V6 is maintence free for 100,000 miles so you have in the ballpark of 20,000 miles before atune up ( spark plugs) and after that you have another 100,000 maint free miles! :-). Good luck!
  • aniazianiazi Posts: 39
    Thanx for the info malibu99.
  • I was unfortunate enough to be involved in my first accident this past weekend. I was driving home to catch the Super Bowl on TV when it happened...
    I was passing through an intersection at 40mph and this other car was on the opposite side of the road, when he proceeded to turn left, right in front of me! Needless to say, there was nothing I could do, I started to move my foot to the brake (like it would have done anything anyway, but you know it's a natural reaction). All I remember was the sound of the impact and then the car turning to the right and the sound of the air bags going off. I lifted my face out of the air bag and all I can remember was this horrible smell of the chemicals from the inflation of the air bag. I got out of the car and looked at my Malibu...
    The front end was totally smashed in, the bumper was disintegrated and then I saw the left rear wheel bent down, almost flat against the ground - it looked like the rear axle broke. One thing that was nice was that my hazard lights automatically came on and the engine shut off, even though the key in the ignition was turned to ON. After the police arrived and took our statements, one of them proceeded to give a ticket to the other driver for "failing to yield right-of-way while making a left turn." So it is now my baby is in the body shop, waiting to get a repair estimate, although somehow I have this feeling they are going to say it's totalled.
    Although I had a few problems with my 99 Malibu LS, I really liked it and have to thank the Lord that I was not hurt. If I didn't have air bags, this would have been a lot worse.
    Just wanted to show that the Malibu is a good, SAFE car...maybe there will be a new Malibu in my future:)
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Glad to hear your car saved you from injuries and that you came through the accident without injury.
  • Hi guys, glad this place is around for me to post in. I checked here first before buying a 97 Malibu, to see the general consensus on the car. Welp, I've had the car about 6 months now, pretty much trouble free aside from the usual squeaks in the dash area, no biggie. But there was an intermittant 'whistling/ringing' coming from the belt area.
    So... I brought it in for a checkup. Guy said it was the altenator, needed a new one. Not being a mechanical genius, I asked a few of my motorhead friends who said "yeah, that could be it".
    Today I pick up the car, guess what? 200 bucks later, the ringing noise is still there. I call the mechanic out, go the hood up. 2 more mechanics follow. "Oh," finally says the mechanic, after much banter amoung them, shines the flashlight under the hood. "Sounds like the a/c compressor." "What?" say I."I thought it was the altenator. BTW, how much for something like a compressor". "Big Bucks" he says. I mumbled something about having no money falling out of a certain oriface. lol "So I just spent 200 bucks for nothing?" "Well, it looks like the problem is more complicated." Well duh. Now, the compressor does kick in, but something in there is rubbing the pulleys. Here's where I need your expertise, guys & gals.
    Is it really necessary to replace the compressor, and not the clutch or some other part of the assembly? I mean, a clutch is like 40 bucks, compared to 500 for a compressor.
    Then, to add to my frustration, on the way out of the plaza, my windshield wipers get tangled up together, and stuck overlapping each other. I pull over to untangle them, they come apart easily, but I hear an ungodly "clunk clunk clang" (some part falling into oblivion) and the whole wiper arm on the passenger side comes loose in my hand. So now the wipers don't work at all either. I'm not sure what needs to be replaced there. (But I was in such a rotten mood for spending $$ on an altenator I didn't need, I was almost ready to go back and blame the mechanic for doing it on purpose to make me spend more money lol haha)

    Other than that, so far I really like this Malibu. It's great in the snow. And great when it's not snowing either. :)
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305

    Sounds like you have been the victim of a bad mechanic scam. When I had my Beretta I had one minor issue with my alternator so they replaced it under a warranty. However, after that the hood cable snapped, so they replaced it for $50, then the AC wouldn't work, fixed for free. So I asked them what was causing these problems. Apparentlt the hood cable snapped because it was pinched under the hood and the AC didn't work because the vaccum tubes were pinched under the battery. Needless to say the two issues were caused by their dumb mechanic who fixed one thing and messed up two other things. Once I found a new dealership ( where I bought my Malibu) the Beretta was for ever after that trouble free. So, the moral of the story is...sounds like someone didn't do their job right.
    I would try replacing the compressor clutch since this is usually the cause of that "ringing" sound. As for your wipers, someone lefts something undone, change mechanics quick! Good luck!

    art guy

    I'm glad to hear you walked away from that accident. As I have always said, the Malibu is a very safe car and it proves that in real life situations. I never pay attention to a test where they ram a moving object into a still car where all the factors such as the drivers ability to steer away, the ABS in the car, and the airbags are left out of the equation. Good Luck!
  • I'm thinking of buying a 2001 Malibu. What is everyone's honest opinion on this car? Repairs? This particular Chevy is not my first choice (the Impala is), but the Malibu is more in my price range. I'll be relocating from snowy Chicago to hot and dry Las Vegas this spring and want to purchase the car before we leave. Do you think it's a good car for out there? Since there is a lot of driving out there, do you think the Malibu can handle it? You can send me your comments to my personal email, one reason being it's easier for me to read my email then to constantly log on here (I am at work, so it has to look legit!!). Thanks for everyone's opinions - good or bad.
  • This engine may have been designed to last forever but I had to have the pistons replaced at 12,000 on a 2000 Malibu. What's up with this?
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305

    How should I know, I didn't build your car. The fact is you are probably one of the minority( possibly less than a 5%) who have had engine problems with the 3.1 V6. You can complain about the fit and finish on GM vehicles if you are picky but their engines and trannies are amomg the best out there. You should not have any other issues with your engine from now on though.
  • Thanks for sharing that you did not build my car. But I don't consider raising the question of bad pistons as being picky. I expected as few bugs as I have experienced with every new car I have purchased. But not having to have the entire engine torn down. I don't think there would be too many folks happy about that. Fortunately, I have a very honest dealer who informed me of the problem with the pistons in the 3.1's that were built in Mexico. Good luck to everyone else who has the 2000 Malibu.
  • malibu99>> Sorry to hear your problems but the brake issues have all been worked out and eliminated, the 98 modles did have brake issues which are now fixed

    When did suddenly all the '98 Malibus get repaired? I never received a recall notice, nor is there one at I, like others, have been getting mine replaced periodically. What's your magic solution?
  • aniazianiazi Posts: 39
    Yeah, I am wondering too. I think if they are fixed then dealers installed old designed rotors back to the cars. And thats the reason people are getting problem over and over. Although when I called chevy they said its fixed in 2000 model. But I am not sure it is. Since they have redesigned most of the stuff in 2001 so I believe it must have fixed in 2001. But I don't find anywhere any solid proof. Probably a good honest dealer can only tell. I will try to find out. I have 2001 and I have more than 3000 miles so far I have no problem at all but its too early to say about brakes.
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    Hey dh wasn't trying to sound nasty just kinda humorous, I did answer the question though. Basically it is one of those VERY few cases. Sorry if you took offense :-)
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    What I meant to say by that sentence was that the 97 anmd 98 models had brake issues which have now been fixed ( meaning the brake issues for the Malibu). So there's my magic solution, I corrected my sentence :-)
  • Malibu99, no offense taken. Just driving my point. You will begin to see problems with pistons in the 3.1 for the year 2000. The two pistons the farthest from the water pump. Also, I've had to have the brakes repaired on my Malibu at 6,000. The dealer corrected the problem and I think there is a service bulletin out on it. I also had air coming in thou my speakers. Don't get me wrong. I think the Malibu is a great value for the money. I'm just highly ticked off by the piston problem which is not something I think is acceptable. But overall I'm happy with the car. It's going to cost CM at ton to correct their mistake which will only drive up the cost of new cars.
  • My wife and I pulled the trigger on a 2000 Malibu LS that had 16,000 miles on it. We paid $14,980 which I think was an ok deal, (they even thru in a set of new floor mats, oooooh aaaaaah). We have only put 60-70 miles on it so far, but I easily can say it was a large step up from our '93 Tracer 4cyl putt-putt mobile, ;-). Ya, I need to find a good deal on new tires, these cheap firestones aren't very good at all on the wet/snowy/icey roads of Wisconsin. And yes in the 3-4 days we have had the car its been easy to tell that these tires are weak at best. So I need to take care of that sooner then later. Ok, one other small thing, there is a small trim section up at the base of the windshield that doesn't look right, its poping up on the far right, not by a lot, but enough where I might want them to fix that........hmmmm will they fix something like that under warranty?

    Ya know we did a lot of shopping, sat in a lot of cars, and drove several of them. For the money this car is hard to beat dollar for dollar, feature for feature. And I don't think anyone could honstly say, I just bought a less relible car then the Tracer we turned in. Not that the Tracer was that bad did ok, but it had its moments.

    We will have a 400 mile road trip coming up in a month or so, and I am actually looking forward to it, where with the Tracer, I would have tolerated the trip only.

    Now which tires have people gone with to replace these affinities?
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    In my experience, the Firehawk SH-30 are excellent for wet weather, if you do not mind less soft ride with the performance tires.

    They are OK with the two-three inches of the New England snow. Do not know about really heavy snow, though. Like on this picture:

    Probably it makes sense to have a second set of wheels, with snow tires. As the people are doing in Russia...

  • hvan3hvan3 Posts: 630
    I too was involved in a total collision. I was driving east-west, while the guy that hit me was driving north-south. I was in a 95 Honda Accord EX. Thank god we're safe from the collision.

    I am now in the market for a new car. Although I loved my Accord, I'm in the market for something different. I accumulated $3750 worth of GM points from my GM credit card, and now I'm stuck buying GM car/truck. LOL. I came down to conclusion of....Malibu LS, Impala LS, Tahoe LS, or Silverado LS truck.

    By the way, I read an excellent article about recouping your costs on a new car when your old car is declared "totalled". I havent' yet pursue with the other insurance claims, but I'm planning to recoup my cost on the new vehicle ( sales tax, registration, and title.) one way or another.

    Let me know if you had any luck. If it works, I'll definitely contact my attorney or deal with the other insurance directly.

    My e-mail address is

    Good luck!

  • ghtrapghtrap Posts: 26
    Brakes - I have a 2000 Malibu LS and have had no problems with the brakes. I broke them in very slowly and I make sure my wheel mounting nuts are torqued equally and properly to that stress isn't induced into the rotors. I drive a lot and already have 27,000 miles on it. No real problems except I have just recently had problems with the air directional knob. It somethimes has a mind of its own and doesn't always distribute the air through the proper ducts that I am asking for. Wonder if anyone else has had that happen. I need to make an appointment with the dealer to have it fixed.

    To t_h_x1138:

    The Affinitys are simply a low grade tire. I switched to my favorite tire, the Michelin X-One a few months ago. Incredible difference in wet/snow traction as well as handling. No more 'mushy' feel. Michelin doesn't make the X-One in the same size as the OEM Affinitys, so I bought them in 205/65R15 size. They are the same diameter as OEM (so the speedometer isn't affected), and the 65 profile is actually a better match to the 6" wheels. Not cheap - but if you can afford them, they are a marked improvement.

    Yes, the fit of your trim pieces is covered under the warranty and your dealer should fix it under coverage. You might wait just a little while and discover a few more things to have them look at while your in there. If you've only driven it 70 miles, you haven't been able to observe everything yet.

    Yes, the Malibu is a heck of a lot more car than a Tracer. I don't have any doubts that you'll be a lot more comfortable in the Malibu.

    Good luck
  • Ya, I put some Michelin XGT's on that tracer, so $200 for a pair of tires is ok (mounted and everything), not sure if the x-ones fall into that catagory. Either way, I think I want to stay way from firestone.

    BTW, my wife and I were trying to track down which Michelin's we had put on that tracer. Our receipt shows "P175/65SR14 XGT 4 RRBL", which current Michelins are close to those in all around traction performance? XGT 4H's?

    Our tax refund check should be coming in this week....hmmmmm, guess new tires and a small vacation to try the new tires out might be in order, lol.
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