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Chevrolet Malibu Steering/Suspension



  • gindelm7gindelm7 Posts: 5
    Today, March 2, 2010, I see GM recalling 1.3 million compact cars for steering problems. As described in the recall, the steering locks up, the car "chims", then "power steering" flashes on the radio. More than a dozen accidents are attributed to this recall. When this happens it is almost impossible to turn the wheel. This is exactly the same problem I experienced on the Malibu. Will GM recall the Malibu too? :mad:
  • I certainly hope that they include the Malibu in the recall - there is definitely a problem! I just had my steering column replaced a month ago for the exact problem. I'm not at all convinced that a new steering column will prevent it from happening again. Who can we contact about this??
  • e_net_ridere_net_rider Posts: 1,380
    Did you mean "shimmy" instead of "chims"?
    I had it shimmy about a month ago, but did not notice message in daylight.

    Or did you mean "chime"?
  • anywho71anywho71 Posts: 2
    In light of the recall, I sent letters to my federal government representatives. Hopefully in light of recent pressures and the governments stake in GM, the malibu can be added to the list. NHTSA closed the complaint on this one, but it was closed before the units in the field had a chance to get enough time to experience it. I would think writing to representatives might be able to get the NHTSA to reconsider that action.
  • eileen7eileen7 Posts: 7
    Sharon, would you mind sharing a copy of your letter that you sent to your representatives in Washington, so that I (we) can duplicate it and not "reinvent the wheel" (pun intended!). Thanks much!
  • anywho71anywho71 Posts: 2
    Senator Schumer,
    Recently it was announced that GM was recalling 1.3 million cars that have a potentially dangerous steering defect where the power steering will without warning quit functioning. I am writing to inform you that the recall is in no way complete. The first vehicle to experience this problem to a large extent was the 2004 Chevy Malibu. This is a known problem with this car and needs to be fixed. The NHTSA opened and subsequently closed the investigation on this issue before many of the cars that were to experience this reached the necessary life. Since the repair for this is around $1000 dollars and it is clearly a design flaw, I would kindly urge you to look into the matter and see if GM can be persuaded to assist the many customers who have had to pay for their error. If you web search 2004 chevy malibu steering, you will find an unending supply of testimonials to support my claims. I will include one as reference
    Thank you for your assistance.

  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    The power steering in the Malibu is more an electronic assist vice the old power steering we were accustomed too.

    from what I can find....the voluntary recall is for the replacement of a motor in the power steering system....and the issue occurs in older vehicles generally pass warranty

    on the Malibu the NHTSA did open an investigation in the power steering failures in May 2004,transitioning it to an engineering analysis on July 04 and closing the investigation in May 05 based on GM ISSUED CUSTOMER SATISFACTION CAMPAIGN (CSC) 04050A IN DECEMBER 2004 TO ADDRESS THE ALLEGED DEFECT IN APPROXIMATELY 58,700 SUBJECT VEHICLES, ENCOMPASSING AT LEAST 97 PERCENT OF THE COMPLAINT AND WARRANTY CLAIMS POPULATION. VEHICLES OUTSIDE THE CSC 04050A POPULATION CONTAIN A NEWLY DESIGNED TORQUE AND POSITION SENSOR AND HAVE EXPERIENCED A RELATIVELY LOW COMPLAINT RATE. (this was cut and pasted from the NHTSA website).

    there were no further investigations for other MY mailbus other than the 04.....with that said....make your own conclusions.....Im not sure the malibus have the same power steering systems as the Cobalts being recalled....most repairs for the malibu are for steering column replacement due to these sensor failures, vice an actual motor my understanding.....once replaced they have to be calibrated as well.....just want to make sure we are comparing the same cause and effect....

    04 Malibu Maxx LT with 160K on it...and never a steering issue...... :)
  • e_net_ridere_net_rider Posts: 1,380
    Lucky you.
    With old style power steering, hydraulic, you had few parts. You had a pump, a couple of hoses, and a hydraulicly assisted gear box or rack and pinion. And in all cases I'm aware of there was an isolator, often corded rubber, between the steering wheel and the gearbox to isolate vibration, noise, etc. from the cabin. It was fairly reliable. You did not have to do special adjustments or fine tuning if anything in the system was touched or an alignment was done.
    Compare that to this EPS system and don't forget the intermediate shaft is part of this steering system.
    The number of issues I've seen on my own vehicle, many of them stupid design mistakes, I'd say this is Chevy's Edsel.
  • peachy84peachy84 Posts: 2
    i have an 06 malibu ss... i havent noticed a prob with rattling in the steering colomn but i have noticed a squeeking from time to time while im driving. i honestly hate my car... i think its evil... i bought it brand new and ive had a lot of things go wrong with it... my driverside handle on the outside of my door broke off, the steering squeeks, i think i have an exhaust leak thats been there since i bought the car, and now my stereo is eating my cds lol... im told the band or something went bad so it wont push the cd out. fun fun...
  • Just found out that I have to have the assist motor replaced on my 2005 Malibu at the cost of $760! The power steering comes and goes. When it first went out, I was in the middle of a turn onto a busy highway and barely avoided hitting someone head-on. Wasn't sure what was happening and THEN the chime went off & the alert showed up on the screen.(wished it had been BEFORE that happened!) When I notified GM last week, they told me I HAD to take it to a GM dealer to be diagnosed in order for them to consider any assistance on the bill. I did (@ the tune of $80) and now they tell me they will not offer ANY assistance at all! I called the NHTSA and filed a complaint. They said if enough people file complaints with them that GM will be forced to make a recall. So if you (or anyone you know of) have a Malibu with steering issues in the past that have already been paid for or are currently dealing with this situation, please file a complaint with NHTSA.
  • chevsharonchevsharon Posts: 8
    Thanks for the infoon the 2005 Chev. Malibu steering power steering problem. I also experienced the same thing and it cost a LOT of money to repair. I will definitely notify the NHTSA right away. They definitely need a recall here!
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    I would keep after GM...did you work just with the dealer..or with GM customer service....this is a know problem with the 04-05 MY Malibus....many failed during the warranty period....if you do a search at the NHTSA website you will see they issue an engineering study directive on the issue, however there was no recall issue due to GM handling most if not all the cases under warranty...

    steering column replacements were running 700-900 for replacement and a few on the board had mulitiple columns replaced.....Ive been fortunate...(knock on wood) not to have had the problem in my 04 Maxx with 165K on it....

    make sure when they replace the column that it is calibrated correctly as well....there was a customer service rep monitoring edmunds threads for a while....dont know is she still is or a search for Maria at GM...and see if something comes up...I would try contacting her through this steering column issue is a documented problem
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,005
    Hello Pao,
    Thank you for bring this to my attention. To "Chevsharon", please email me more information about your situation so I can look into this further. You can get my email by clicking on my name. Thank you,
    Mariah GM Customer Service
  • I have a 2007 Malibu with the electric assist steering. I keep getting a message on the radio display saying "Power Steering". Looking to find out if anyone else has seen this message and if there is a solution.
  • I have a 2005 Chev Malibu and the power steering failed while going down the highway. The message also appeared on my radio screen at the same time as the power steering failed. I had to replace the entire steering column. However, I have since found out that others have had this same problem and even after replacing the steering column it happens again - only to have to replace the column again. This is a major defect and I feel that GM needs to do a recall and correct the problem. At the advice of another owner with the same problem, I notified the NSTSA - you can email them - and if they get enough complaints they can force a recall. I highly recommend you do this.
  • Thanks for the info. I will do that.
  • eileen7eileen7 Posts: 7
    Same thing happened with my 2004 malibu. Better start saving up your $700 for the dealer to replace your steering column, as I and others on this list have had to. GM refused to reimburse me, and they intimated that if I had a better relationship with the dealer, they might have reimbursed me. Since I refuse to pay dealer service rates when I can get the same or better service elsewhere MUCH more cheaply, I lose. (My husband has paid the same dealer (Medved in Castle Rock, CO) the high service charges for his truck's maintenance -- not a Chevy, but a Dodge -- but they have done a no better job on his car than the local service people (not the dealer) have done on mine. More than once, they did not put enough oil in his car and he had to return.) I love my car, but I feel I can no longer support GM for my next purchase.
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 869
    I have learned from experience to have warranty on a GM for as long as you plan to own it, sad but true.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    I guess Im the exception here...with 3 GM cars....and no major problems on any of them...04 Maxx LT with 165K on it now....06 Pontiac Solstice with 40K on it...and 09 Cadillac CTS with 25K on it.....

    minor issues on all...all handled very nicely by three dealers....most done on the Solstice....with a differential replacement....but it was a known weak point in the early MY Sols.....just as the steering column seems to be with the Malibus.....

    All other brands also have their it isnt specific to GM IMO....just pick a brand and go look at that thread on this will always find issues regardless of make, model, or price......

    I also am very good with routine maintenance and scheduled maintenance on all the vehicles....regular oil and other fluid changes, belts, plugs and filters per OEM recommendations....alignments annually or as well as wash/wax regularly too..........this too reduces mechanical issues
  • You are very fortunate to not have had any problems. I must say though that I am VERY good about routine maintenance as well, including maintenance in all areas so that has not caused the problem.
    The problem is with the steering and GM needs to step up to the plate and recall and correct the problem.
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