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2000-2011 Chevrolet Malibu

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  • I own a 99 malibu LS (70,000 KM) I have the exact same hard starting engine problems. I notice that it started to happen once in a while in cooler weather when I first got my car. Now it seems to happen more often even when the engine is still warm.. I've complain a number of times to my dealership, but they never really tried to fix it (they just scanned the car computer for error code, but no codes ever shows up). This problem don't seem to appear when I'm at the dealership, and they are unwilling to work on it until the see it..

    After long hard searches on the net, I think i might of found a POSSIBLE solution to our problem. Check this site out, under the heading "06 - Engine/Propulsion System",the last point:

    http://service.gm.com/gmtechlink/December2000/articles/bulletins12.htm


    I'll be interested to hear back from you to see what you think..

  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,915
    I will check the tire pressure yurakm and adjust them. That makes sense to add pressure to the tires. Actually, those pressure seem low for a car. Most cars I owned recommended the pressure to be around 32 psi. I wonder if Firestone is being cautious with the pressure in their tires in light of the Explorer recalls or if that is what they typically recommend.
    The car is very quiet except for some excessive tire noise on these stellar PA roads. But I knew that when I bought the vehicle. I had rented a number of Malibus for work. And had recently driven them to Boston and DC (over 1000 miles total) and was pleasently surprised with the vehicle but had noticed excessive road noise esp. on concrete roads. I knew the noise was primarily from the tires as it got much quieter when the road switched to the much smoother blacktop. I figured I can deal with tire noise and replace the tires with something better when the tread gets low. What is the name of the replacement tires you put on your Malibu?
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    To the best of my understanding (and it is very limited):

    1. the tire pressure is recommended by car manufacturer, not the tire manufacturer. GM, not Firestone.

    2. Concerning to Explorer problems:

    again, the low pressure was recommended by Ford. Firestone considered the pressure marginal, but approved.

    3. Concerning Malibu:

    the recommended pressure for front tires, 29 psi, does not looks very low for me. For my other car, Buick Regal with Goodyear Eagle LS tires, GM recommends 30 psi. Not so different.

    However, with the rear tires (Malibu) the recommended pressure is 26 psi, and this looks unusual.

    In my experience, when a mechanic once inflated front and rear tires to the same pressure, my Malibu tried to "fishtail" at hard, panic cornering. So, most probably, GM has a good reason to recommend inflating the front tires to higher pressure than the rear one.

    4. Last year I bought Firestone Firehawk SH-30 for my Malibu. Like them very much. Especially good in rain.

    Bought them because of very positive data from this user survey:

     http://www.tirerack.com/tires/surveyresults/hpas.jsp
  • robby8robby8 Posts: 17
    I own a 2000 Malibu. I have had the car for one year now and since day one I have noticed that the car has a lot of shaking or vibration in certain situations.

    1. At highway speeds, I feel a lot of vibration being transmitted through the gas pedal. While not too bad at the start of the drive, it seems to get worse the longer I am driving (usually after about half an hour). Once in a while there is very little vibration and I have the feeling this is the way the car is supposed to be all the time.

    2. While waiting at a stoplight with my foot on the brake and in drive, the noise and vibration level is very noticeable and irritating.

    3. I am on my third set of brakes (covered by warranty) and I still get the shaking or pulsing that seems to be associated with bad rotors. This usually occurs when I am braking from a speed of 80 kph or higher.

    The service agent at my dealer (who also owns a Malibu) told me that the car seems to run smoother when Esso gas is used. This actually seemed to help a bit. Are these types of vibration normal? I am going back to the dealer and would appreciate anyone else's feedback before I go.
  • Greetings, just joined. I traded my 99 Malibu in on a new 2001 and boy am I sorry I did! My 99 was a 4 cylinder which ran perfectly. My new car's V6 idles roughly and at 55 m.p.h. has a jerking, miss sensation usually going up hills under a slight load. The trans also has a "clunk" noise when going down hills when it upshifts into 3rd gear without giving it any gas. My dealer says there are no diagnostic trouble codes, either current or history, stored in the computer and they can't find anything wrong. Anybody else experience this? I really liked my first Malibu, but I am very upset with the 2001. Also, the quality control on the 99 was alot better. My new car has alot of paint flaws and several other defects. I am curious why the Oaklahoma City assembly plant stopped making Malibu's in 2001. Just venting, thanks.
  • ferraro1ferraro1 Posts: 44
    Hello ~
    Well I swear I have had EVERY type of problem go wrong with this freakin car ! I am in total amazement , HOW !!! Chevrolet can produce such a car and have the gaul to say " The car you knew AMERICA could build" !!
    Yes I know I have te cursed year of the Malibu (1998, built 10/97) but it is crazy I have had the Rotors ($450-500) Motor Mount ($400)That was supposed to solve th shaking vibration HAHHA NO WAY ! I was ripped off ! , well I took the car to upstate New York ths summer (1,000 + miles) and when i arrived I needed new control arms (right and left) rear stabilzer bar etc... that was for the clicking when turning (that Was a good fix was happy but the price was $1,300) ok so at the ed of the trip the gas pedal was starting to stick (post above) and the AC Control Unit was going (So on the drive back to Arkansas) I had the Clicking AC and the out of control Compressor going on and off so today I got th car bac hd both problems fixed the pedal is great now ! with a $315 price tag ! I liked this car , and i still do , but all these repairs are getting crazy I mean the car is only a 1998 with now 51,000 on it ohh I have also found the Problem Solver for the Vibration !!! NOW HEAR THIS ! it is MOTORUP !!! ok MOTORUP !! it is expinsive $25 a bottle but it works pleasetry it and it will settle you can buyit at any PEPBOYS Advance Auto Parts have Stopped carrying it ok well I hav now vented thanks .
    Paul
  • himomerhimomer Posts: 59
    I've noticed some posts about raising the tire pressure a couple of psi, so i thought i would try it yesterday. When i got to the gas station, the psi in my front tires were 47psi!!!! and the rear were 35!! I think the guy at the tire center over inflated them cause i had a flat at the mall one day and the Sears autocenter people came and put air in it for me so i could drive to the place i get my oil changed and tires rotated/balanced at, and i told him to check the pressure in my tires. I lowered them to 30/frt and 28/r and i liked the way the car drove with them at 47/35, now i get a lot of tire sqeal when i press the pedal down about half-way, i know most of it is due to me putting 30K miles on the car this summer and i need new tires, the car handled better, road better, and had less tire noise with them that high. I am tempted to overinflate them, but i know if i do it something will happen cause i know they are over inflated
  • nestormnestorm Posts: 2
    I know have 32,000 miles on my 1999 Malibu LS. The only problem thus far, was the battery went dead, & was replaced at no cost. I am thinking of taking it to the dealer to have it checked prior to the 36,000 mile end of waranty. There have been no problems at all with the car, & I have been very pleased with it. My question is: If I take it to the dealer, what problems should I ask him to check for. I am concerned about the brake problems that seem most often mentioned, & there is a slight creaking sound from the rear of the car every so often. Anything specific that should definetly be checked out before the 36,000 mile waranty expires. I would appreciate your comments & feedback. Thus far, I am definetly very pleased with the car, & would recommend Chevy Malibu to friends. Thanks for your suggestions
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,915
    You may want to check your tire pressure again afer your car has sat for a while..like in the morning before oyu go to work. If you checked the tire pressure after you've driven a while, they were warmed up and the tire pressure was probably high. So by reducing it down to 30/28, you may have taken too much air out and now your tires are under inflated. Which explains the squealing.

    I believe warm tires can raise the pressure by at least 4 psi. Most likely more. I would try your tires at 32/29 and see how that feels.

    so far I have 1700 miles on my Malibu and I am really happy with my purchase. So far we have recorded 28 mpg, 22 mpg (lot of stop and go driving that tank) and 24 mpg. This coming tankful should yield close to 30 mpg (90% highway driving). I'll know after lunch when I fill up the tank. My only gripes about the car is the tires (can't wait to replace those) and the small fuel tank. The tank should be at least 18 gallons instead of 14. But we are still getting much better gas mileage then our 96 Explorer (main reason we bought a car). I just hope I can get 100,000 trouble free miles out of this car. First time I have bought a Chevy. I just hope I don't regret it.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,915
    I wouldn't get too worried about the end of the warranty. If you took it to a Chevy mechanic anyway, do you really think they would tell you that something was wrong and fix it for free for you? And as far as the brakes are concerned, you've gotten 32,000 miles on the original brakes, I doubt Chevy will replace them for free for you, even if the rotors are warped.

    I'm hoping my experience is similar to yours..trouble free. We tend to drive a lot of highway miles and have had very, very good luck with our vehicles even my 1989 Ford Tempo. I think driving highway miles is the key. We have never been straded and have had very few $1000 repair bills. Actually only one for our 1991 Explorer at the 80,000 miles checkup. It needed a bunch of little things that just added up (brakes, muffler, A/C,etc).

    Hope you continue to have good luck with your car. Kepp us up to date too. We need more positive conversation on this board.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    My dealer performed a 30,000 mile service, including the general checkup, the last summer, before the end of warranty. Only two serious problems developed during the next year: a coolant leak through the intake manifold gasket, and a rain/wash water leak into trunk.

    Now I recall that the engine coolant was added every 3 months when the car was serviced at dealership during the warranty period. Possibly, the leak already was developing. There is a lot of reports on Edmunds concerning this defect with the 2.8l, 3.1l, and 3.4l v-6 GM engine family.

    rbenton "Common General Motor's 2.8, 3.1, 3.4 V6's engine problems" Feb 4, 2001 12:15pm

    Pressure test costs about $20-$30: cheap insurance. The repair cost about $550, mostly labor, at Firestone, and probably more at dealership. In my case the price does not matter, because I have a 3-party extended warranty. However, it took time to get authorization.

    As to the body leak, my dealer repaired it for free, under GM body warranty, even while the original 36/36 warranty was expired a year before. I believe, this defect is unusual for Malibu.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,915
    Help!!! I just realized my Malibu does not have a coin holder. It's in the base model but not the LS. Has anyone found a place that sells coin holders for this vehicle? I checked with the dealership and GM does not sell anything. Does anyone have another rememdy to hold my coins?

    1900 miles on the vehicle and running great. Last tankful of gas - 31.5 mpg.
  • malibu1malibu1 Posts: 52
    This problem has probably already been brought up in past posts, but our air conditioner in our 1998 LS basically is on and off very often while driving. The green light on the button is constantly fluctuating on and off while the AC is switched on. Is this a bad switch or the symptom of a larger problem? Thanks for your help.
  • mk12345mk12345 Posts: 2
    I received a safety recall notice for my 1998 Malibu in mid August. According to the letter:
    Reason For This Recall: GM has decided that a defect which relates to motor vehicle safety exists in certain 1997 and 1998 Chevrolet Malibu and Oldsmobile Cutlass model vehicles. If a buildup of snow or ice restricts the movement of the passenger side wiper arm, the pivot housing can crack and the wipers will not operate. Reduced visibility in inclement weather could lead to a vehicle crash.

    Comments, anyone?
  • phollanphollan Posts: 14
    I took my 98 Malibu LS in for the recall last week, and 45 minutes later, it was done. I never heard of any incidents but it must have happened to someone.

    As for the coin holder, I'd be surprised if they took it out of the LS. It's just a rubber insert that fits in the space in front of the console.

    The A/C problem requires the climate control panel to be replaced. I don't know how much it costs, since mine was replaced last year under warranty.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    Drove to my dealer. They already had the new wiper part and installed it in about 1/2 hour.
  • I have a '99 Malibu with 26k miles. Recently, the fan stopped working on the 1 and 2 positions. It will only turn on when it is set to 3, 4, or 5. When it is on 1 or 2, it's the same as if it's on 0. Has anyone else had this problem? I plan on taking it to the dealer under warranty in a few days.
  • himomerhimomer Posts: 59
    Taking my 99 cutlass to the dealer i don't trust since it turned out they were right to get the Intake leak fixed, plus the A/C head unit, i'll let you guys know how it goes and what they say about the warranty this time.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    Had the problem with air not working on low speed (1 and 2) 1.5 years ago. As well as I remember, not only A/C, but fan also did not work on low speed.

    A resistor was replaced at dealership. It took at most 1/2 hours. If I remember right, the repair had to cost $24 - it was replaced under warranty.

    A lot of people reported the same defect on this board, so Chevy dealers must know it very well. Not a big deal.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,915
    It looked like a coin holder should fit pretty easy in that opening. I already checked with the dealer. Maybe I can get theme to make one "disappear" off one of the base models on the lot.
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    Wait. You mean to say that the LS doesn't have the coin holder but the base does????? What were they thinking!!!!
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    Hi!

    Did not hear you for long time. How are you?
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    Doing good. My cars is still great although I think I am starting to notice the infamous flickering AC light issue but that's minor to me. I tend to read this board more than write to it, seems like most Malibu owners are relatively happy with their cars and the board has colled down.
  • spuddspudd Posts: 1
    Okay, here is a weird one. I have a 97 Malibu and had to replace the battery yesterday. It wasn't dead but was getting very weak. Nothing unusual happened during the replacement and it only took a minute or two. Clock, radio presets, keyless entry still work like a charm. The problem is: the fuel gauge is crazy. Its normal sweep is from the 8 o'clock position(empty) to about 12 o'clock(full). It is like it spun all the way around or something. When the key is off it drops to 6 o'clock(straight down). When you turn the key on, the needle goes clockwise to the 'stop' pin at 8 o'clock and can go no further. Looking at the height of this pin, there is no way that the needle 'jumped' over it. Has anyone seen this problem? Is there some sort of 'reset' that might fix it?

    P.S. Regarding earlier discussion - my 97 LS does have a coin holder.....
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    A co-worker was looking at used Malibus for a second car. Are there any bad years to look out for or any other things to look for?? I know the newer ones are pretty solid, but sometimes there are issues with the first/second years of production. Any help would be appreciated.
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    Try disconnecting your battery for 5 min and see what happens.
  • rdeschenerdeschene Posts: 318
    It could be just restricted to your fan/fan switch or, this is something which happened to me, your alternator's voltage regulator is starting to go and it has "fried" part of the circuits in your fan motor.

    If your alternator is going, the car's electrical system will be drawing from your battery while the car's running. If you disconnect the battery's positive cable with the engine running and it stalls, this is a sign that the alternator is probably on its way out and will continue to fry other circuits as it goes.

    Be careful when you do this, of course, as you're making some sparks around a charging battery and that can theoretically lead to an explosion. Then there's all the moving parts under the hood. You'll probably want to do this with good lighting and good ventilation.
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    Stay away from the 97 and 98 models. The 99 models are pretty solid and tehy got better from then on. Good luck!
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Ya.. the 97s look bad in Consumer Reports also. They seem to the think the 98s are average reliability and ok though.

    Thanx for the input. I will pass on the info next week.
This discussion has been closed.