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Chevrolet Malibu: Problems & Solutions



  • I own a 2001 Chev Malibu LS 3.0L V6 with 150,000 miles.
    My engine developed a sputtering problem, and has poor acceleration and cuts out. It feels like it's ignition related the way it cuts in and out. Sometimes it stalls and sometimes it clears up. Today it was fine then the idle began racing, shut it off then re started then ran like garbage. When I got home I removed my batt cables and cleaned. Seems OK but still sputters. Just last weekend it died while parking and I got an ERROR on my radio display, shut it off and came out 15 minutes later and was fine.
    Seems to be getting more frequent and worse.
    I'm no stranger to cars and car repair but what the heck, I'm not too proud to ask for help.
    REPAIR HISTORY: Original owner, replaced fuel pump and sender and filter, intake gasket job, turn signal/hazard switch, 100,000 mile full tune-up.
    Occasionally the engine light comes on.
    I know somebody out there has had this same problem, GM made millions of the cars.
    Please help !!!
  • Correction_ It's not a 3.0L, it's a 3.1L V6
  • So the other day my headlights didnt turn on. My parking lights, brake lights, and everyting else on the inside turn on at night. The only thing that doesnt, is my headlights. My check engine light comes on, so Im going to go to autozone to see what comes up. I checked thefuses and relay for the headlights, and they seemed good.

    I just wanted to check here for any ideas.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    just curious..beleive you have an 04 many miles..just curious..I too have an 04 Maxx LT..and just rolled over 80K this week.....
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    My first thought is a problem with the ignition module. commone problem.
  • I have 44K miles on my Maxx so far. It was built in Jan '04, just before the bad batch of transmissions came about, and when they had the bad steering columms.
    Hopefully this steering fix will be the last.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    mine was an Feb 04 build and I purchased in Mar 04....have not had one problem with the original column....and no suspension least those I can hear very happy with the performance and durability of the car to date...knock on wood.....did have to replace on turn signal socket (under warranty) and the CHMSL myself.....but otherwise..still a strong car.....probably hang on to it for at least two more years..and it will probably see 130-150K
  • I think your Maxx got past several issues mine got nailed with, pao.
    Despite its problems, the Maxx is one of the better cars I have owned, and given I like hatches, there isn't all that much else available outside of the German offerings whose bad reliability scares me away.

    Only other worry is what happens when Maxx is discontinued next year (unless Chevy decides to keep older E1 Maxx chassis in production while sedan moves to E2 design). How long are auto makers required to make spare parts for these cars?
  • For what it's worth I have an '01 mailbu and had an experience similar to yours.
    Without any worning I parked my car at the supermarket and when I came out it wouldn't start. I actualy killed the battery trying to start it because it sounded like it was going to start but just wouldn't come to life.
    I had it towed to the Chev dealership thinking it was serious but all it was, was a clogged in-line fuel filter.
    Ussualy a clogged fuel filter will give you some signs like falling on it's face under heavy accelleration or die out going up a hill. But nope, no warning at all.
    Maybe yours is clogged.
  • My malibu sucks !
    I'll never buy GM junk again.
    My malibu ran out of gas 3 times! when the gauge said it had gas.
    I had to drop the tank and put in a new pump and sender.
    Cost me $ 300.00 to do it myself.
    I've had more major probs with this car than any other car I've ever owned.
  • Can you tell me more about the ignition module problem or what else it could be ?
    I'm close to sending this car over a cliff.
    I'm no fan of malibu's.
    Had lots of bad experiences with this car.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 20,381
    >Ussualy a clogged fuel filter will give you some signs like falling on it's face under heavy accelleration or die out going up a hill

    Fuel lines clog from poor gas, either substance itself or station cleanliness. Sounds like the clogged filter is fault of station choice. You shouldn't blame the car. It sounds like you've had gas problems before since you say usually a clogged filter gives signs.

    I've driven hundreds of thousands of miles and never had a clogged filter problem in GM cars. Currently at 140K on LeSabre.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    dont quote me but I believe somewhere I read an auto manufacturer is obligated for 10 years beyond the last model year production run.......

    anyone else know??
  • hhmaxhhmax Posts: 44
    My 2005 maxx LT, AUTO, when in D and stopped on a slope, it will back down. I have to hit the brake and once the brake is released, I have to press gas real quick.

    Is it because the idle rev is too low? Mine is just above 500 rpm at idle without A/C fan running.
  • depends on how big a slope. If I am on a steep hill and idling, I will have to rev the engine a little to keep my Maxx from going backwards once I let up on the brake.

    Then again, if the car __wasn't__ slipping on the same slope earlier on, with same engine RPM, there might be a problem.
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    Yep, it is normal. I sure wouldn't call it as quick as a manual with clutch; there shouldn't be any real urgency to try the 220 lb feet of torque on any hills except in San Francisco
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,060
    Please go to the group top level and create a discussion that fits your Malibu comments/questions or post in an existing discussion.

    Chevrolet Malibu

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  • I have a 2001 Chevy Malibu with 79,000 miles on it. Lately I've been getting headaches when I drive the car, I think it might be carbon monoxide because there is no odor. I had the gasket in the EGR valve replaced to no avail. Two mechanics looked at it and can't find the problem and there is no check engine light on. The car also has a problem with the gas tank, it stops about fifty times before it fills. Could this be related?

  • mr_smithmr_smith Posts: 20
    Good Morning,

    I have a 2014 Malibu LT. The top of the passenger front door rubs on the top of the rear door when opening the front door (mostly the rubber sealings are rubbing). Its gotten to the point where it is difficult to open the front door from inside. Has anybody else that has owned a 2013-2015 Malibu been experiencing this??? Any solutions??
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 53,884
    You might have a body shop look at that. Many times door hinges can be shimmed to align the door. Has this car suffered an accident or are you not the original owner?

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  • mr_smithmr_smith Posts: 20
    No accidents and I am the original owner. I have no idea what caused this. I guess the body shop it is, that's what a chevy dealer recommended, but I just wanted a second opinion
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