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2008-2009 Chevrolet Malibu

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  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 1,744
    edited January 2011
    According to my TPMS display I lose a couple of pounds after a couple of months, but it then seems to stabilize.

    I have heard similar tire pressure stories on other message boards about other cars. I wonder if the use of alloy wheels these days may have something to do with tire pressure issues.

    2011 Buick Regal Turbo, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Good Morning:

    Thank you for your reply. ---- This is now becoming very interesting. ---- If other vehicle brand names are experiencing the same issue of lost air due to a problem with the aluminum wheels, then we have a "major safety issue" on the roads today, because most people do not service their vehicles at the designated time, (every 5,000 miles), and most people never check their air pressure between oil & filter service. ---- So what we have on the roads today is a large group of vehicles with "low tire pressure" causing the tire walls to flex. ---- Think about this reality when you are traveling at 65 MPH on the highway next to another vehicle.

    I am sure that other vehicles are also loosing air over a period of time. (Whether this is a fault of the quality of the tires, the aluminum wheels or a combination of both, this is a very dangerous condition.) ---- My other vehicle is a 2007 XLE V6 Camry. It also has aluminum wheels. The Vehicle came with Bridgestone Tires, but I forced the dealer to exchange the tires for original equipment Michelin Tires. The original Michelin Tires lasted 50,000 miles. I am now on my second set of Michelin Tires and the vehicle has about 62,000 miles. I never have an air loss problem. It could be that the Michelin Tires have a stronger sidewall, thus limiting the "flexing of the tire bead at the aluminum wheel," or the quality of the aluminum wheel is much better than the quality of the Chevrolet wheel.

    I am out on the road for days at a time, which is why I "over service" my vehicles. My vehicle is my office and it needs to be 100% --- 24 / 7. A tire problem on the road would be very inconvenient at least, but it would a disaster if I was involved in an accident. ---- I guess I need "peace of mind!" ----- Here is the "BIG QUESTION"! ----- I really like the Chevrolet Malibu. ---- I like the quality of the vehicle. ----- I think it is as good as a Honda Accord. ---- It is a fun car to drive. ---- Up to this issue, I was considering purchasing another Malibu or possibly an Impala in 2012, (if GM developed a 6 speed auto trans), but do I want to deal with anther GM vehicle that has this "tire / aluminum wheel" problem? --- It might be "ok" if the fix is as simple as a set of Michelin Tires!------- Best regards. -----Dwayne :shades: ;) :confuse: :)
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 549
    A two lb. drop in pressure isn't very much. Perhaps it is due to filling the tires at 30lbs in a warm garage and then checking the tires in the cold outside. Approx. 1 lb. is lost for every 10 degree drop in temperature.

    Also the garage tire gauge may be calibrated slightly different than yours.

    If your were losing four or five lbs., then I would be concerned.
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    You make an excellent point! ---- The last time the tire pressure was adjusted by the dealer, the ambient temperature, and the temperature of the wheels & tires was cold. ---- Best regards! ---- Dwayne :shades: :confuse: ;) :)
  • 2008 LT Malibu

    I also have decided that my tires need to be repalced. At least I got 25k out of the oem tires. I am constantly losing air and am not happy with the tire performance.

    Has anyone considered or purchased Cooper tires for your Malibu? Any comments?
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Thank you for your positing on this subject! ---- I was starting to think that it was all in my mind! ---- Since 1997, I have either owned or leased five (5) Honda vehicles, one Toyota Camry and now the 2010 Malibu. ---- The Hondas and the Toyota all had Michelin tires, and I never had any problems with the tires. ---- I always got 50,000 miles out of a set of Michelin tires,--- and they never lost air between my 2,500 mile service intervals. ---- The vehicle that I turned in, (against the Malibu), had the original Michelin tires, and they were 6 + years old. They never lost air! ------- Since you have a 2008 Malibu, GM must know that there is a problem with these tires, and they have chosen to ignore the entire issue, -- because they are still installing these tires on their new vehicles. ---- I would suggest that you explore the possibility of purchasing a set of Michelin tires on your Malibu! ----- Bite the bullet and get the best. ---- If I was purchasing this vehicle again, I would insist that the tires be changed. ---- I love the car, but I feel that I have been cheated by the quality of the tires. ---- I hope that the GM representatives monitor this site. ----- We cannot be the only owners of the Malibu that are experiencing this tire problem. ---- Will this be an major issue when I purchase a vehicle in 2012? ----- YES, ----- in fact, it very well could be a "deal breaker," and force me to go to a foreign name plate! ---- Do a search on the "net" about "Cooper tires" and see what you come up with in terms of problems! ------ Best regards. --------- Dwayne :shades: :lemon: ;) :)
  • malexbumalexbu Posts: 169
    Perhaps not all, but a significant part of your concerns may be in
    your mind, indeed.

    The ambient temperature significantly changes the measured pressure
    (as you already agreed). The increased tire temperature due to
    driving the car changes the pressure. The pressure meters are not
    terrifically accurate instruments and are sometimes awkward to use.
    Measuring through a modern type of cap may give different results than
    measuring with the cap off.

    Measurement errors are everywhere. OTOH, plus minus three PSi
    shouldn't matter that much.

    My advice: buy a quality gauge ($8) and a 12V-socket-powered inflator
    pump ($20), then inspect and pump your tires as frequently as you feel
    needed. With my three Malibus, I do it about once every two months or
    before long trips. Takes 30 minutes, gives a piece of mind and
    understanding.

    I expect that you won't find leaks to talk about (every tire leaks a
    bit). I also expect that having the correct pressure of 30 PSi will
    not make your Malibu an MPG winner over your Toyota (judging by the
    numbers you quoted).

    Just measure everything yourself and don't trust anybody, even your
    dealer.

    BTW, changing oil and filter every 2500 miles is a certain overkill:
    it doesn't make your car any better of safer -- on the opposite,
    increases the chance that a technician drops something
    harmful into your engine. (On top of costing you money and polluting
    the environment.) Follow the manual on that and other issues.

    Hope you'll begin enjoying your Malibu more when you start your own
    DIY :-)
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Hi malexbu:

    I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your suggestions. They are appreciated.

    I do own a quality tire gauge. In fact, I keep one in each vehicle. I could easily check and adjust my tire pressure every week if necessary, when I purchase fuel.

    Since my last posting, I found someone who has solved this problem with these tires. ------- He simply installed a liquid tire sealer in each tire. ----- This stopped the slow tire leak. (I do not know what this sealer will do in the tire over time, but it did solve the leak problem.)

    Since we are discussing this issue on an open forum, lets consider these concepts. My Chevrolet LTZ Malibu had an MSRP of $30,000.00. (I did not pay anywhere near this amount, but for discussion sake, lets say that the Malibu is worth $30,000.00 dollars. ----- Is this defect acceptable in a product worth $30,000.00 dollars? ----- Would be be acceptable in a Bentley at $363,000.00, a BMW at $85,550.00, a Mercedes Benz at $58,200.00 or a Porsche at $245,000.00? ----- I guess what I am asking is ----How much do you have to pay for a new vehicle to get a "quality product" that does not have such an issue? ----- Where is the cut off point in terms of price, that guarantees the customer quality and / or customer satisfaction?

    I am sure that a person who purchases a Bentley, BMW, Mercedes or a Porsche would not accept this condition on their new vehicle, and I am sure that these companies would correct the problem to the satisfaction of the customer. For those of us who can only afford a Chevrolet, this is our Bentley, BMW, Mercedes or Porsche. Why aren't we treated as valued customers?

    Best regards. ----- Thank you for your time. ------ Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • malexbumalexbu Posts: 169
    Dwayne,

    Checking and adjusting the tire pressure at gas stations is not always
    easy and reliable.

    For some reason, Shell and Mobil gas stations I have tried to do it
    at, have terrible gauges and it's a pain and waste of time to adjust
    tire pressure there. I only saw good electronic systems at Hess
    stations around here. So, I've come to the conclusion that it would
    be better to do it at home with proper equipment -- I now do that and
    don't have worries about the tire pressure.

    I don't think I would use Slime or another sealer to seal a leaking
    tire. If it leaks you've got to find the cause and fix or replace the
    tire (I do drive with a tire I plugged myself -- it's as good as new.)

    On your concept question: "Is this defect acceptable in a product
    worth $30,000.00 dollars?"

    You didn't demonstrate your defect; you have a perception of a defect.

    You didn't report your own measurements history. I am not to eager to
    go back and reread your long postings but I think you said you had
    "the problem" in all four tires. A simultaneous and quanitatively
    similar leak in four wheels/tires seems extremely unlikely to me.

    Pump your tires to the same pressure (say, 31 PSi). Come to your car
    with your quality preasure gauge in the morning on a weekend, when the
    tires are cold. Measure, record. Do the same the next weekend (or
    the weekend after). Always in the morning, before driving the car.
    Measure (w/o releasing air), record.

    Do this for a month, report your data. Until there is no trend
    showing a leak, your don't have a case.

    A defective tire is not acceptable to drive with in any car, $30K or $5K.

    But to demand that your Malibu had Michelins is ridiculous. I don't
    know if Michelins are any better than Goodyears (like many other
    people I haven't had problems with Goodyears.) But in the free market
    economy you are free to buy what you want, at the price you want --
    and nobody is obliged to sell you what you want. Manufacturers do
    handle safety problems with equipment, but your claims that Goodyears
    are unsafe are not serious: they may be, like everything else, but
    it's not for you to make a general claim of that nature -- report your
    personal experience, accurately, please, and let people make their own
    conclusions.

    If I had to buy a car now, I would likely buy another Malibu -- I
    don't give a damn about Goodyears vs Michelins. You do: fine, go find
    a car with those. Chevrolet doesn't have an obligation to sell you
    what you want. Like every reasonable business they have to balance
    various factors and be profitable, or else.

    "Why aren't we treated as valued customers?" I have dealt with
    several Chevrolet dealers and have nothing but praise for them, some
    of them were just extraordinary. And I love my Malibus. What else do
    I need from Chevrolet? (I.e. I strongly disagree with this statement
    of yours.)

    Regards :-)
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 549
    Dwayne: Please read malexbu's posting carefully. He is right on. You must check your tires as he has suggested. Installing slime in four relatively new tires is the absolute wrong thing to do. Goodyear vs. Michelin. The debate would go on forever. They both make excellent tires and their share of mediocre tires--but not inferior tires.
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Good Morning malexbu:

    Thank you for taking the time to share your ideas on this most important subject. ------ Please be assured that your efforts are greatly appreciated.

    In a previous posting on this subject, you stated that you owned three (3) Chevrolet Malibus. ----- Could you list the year of each vehicle, and the brand of tire you have on each vehicle? ------ Are these tires the "original equipment tires?" ----- I ask you these questions because you state that you adjust the air on these vehicles frequently. ----- If all three (3) Malibus have this issue, I would say that there is a production problem either with the tires, or the aluminum alloy rims, or a combination of the two components.

    I think that you misunderstood my 2,500 mile service schedule. (I choose to have my vehicle serviced every 2,500 miles by the selling dealer, because I earn my living "on the road," and I want to be sure that all fluids are at the proper levels, and I have a fresh oil and filter change, because I do not want to deal with this issue on the road. ----- I want the selling dealer to perform all the service on this vehicle, because I want all my service records in one place.) Sometimes I have this service done at 3,000 miles, depending on my work schedule, but I never have it done at 5,000 miles. (Oil and filters are cheap, ---- engines are expensive.) ---- If I wanted to, I could do my own oil and filter changes, but I rather have the dealer perform this service for me at their facility. ----- I have more important things to do with my time. Time is money, and sometimes you need to have professionals handle the routine activities.

    I do not expect Chevrolet to produce a vehicle with Michelin tires even though I do prefer that brand, but I do expect Chevrolet to produce a vehicle that demonstrates high quality. (It should be as good as a Honda Accord.) The recommended service interval for this vehicle is 5,000 miles. At this point in time, the oil and filter are changed and all fluids are checked. The tires are check for nails and the air pressure is set to specifications. When my vehicle is serviced the tire pressure is set at 30 psi. Four (4) weeks later, my tires are at 28psi. This is the pressure on all four tires. So, whatever is occurring, it is occurring on all four tires simultaneously. The probability of all four tires hitting the same type of "pot hole" and loosing the same amount of air is not even a possibility. ---- If your Malibus have Goodyear tires and the same type of aluminum / alloy wheels and they are loosing air, you have made my position! ----- (There is either a problem with the tires, the wheels and a combination of both)

    I find this exchange of information to be very stimulating because it is obvious that you have some knowledge about automobiles. My background is in the field of Industrial Technology and Human Development and I am self educated in the automotive environment. (I read a lot of books.) ---- Self education is just as good as a formal education.

    Lets keep this going, as I am learning a lot from you!

    Best regards. ---------- Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 549
    Dwayne: When you check your tires the way that malexbu suggests, and allowing for natural pressure reduction due to temperature decreases report back to us. How long do you think a tire should stay at exactly 30psi.? Six months? A year? It varies according to temp. and heat build up. Why don't you try nitrogen? It is supposed to hold its pressure better than air.
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Thank you for you reply. ----- I would assume that the service staff at the dealership, is trained by the factory to inflate tires according the the manufacturer's specifications. ------- (This is what I am paying them to do as a service customer!) ------- I would expect that the tires would hold pressure for at least one month after the vehicle is serviced. ---- (If I am loosing 2 psi in four weeks, then in eight weeks I would be down to 26psi, and in twelve weeks I would be down to 24psi.) ------- You did not share any information on your three (3) Malibus. I am looking forward to reading this information. ----- I am not trying to be "difficult' and / or "argumentative," but rather I am trying to come up with a solution to the problem. ---- I am paying for service at a Chevrolet Dealership, so I am going to make the assumption that they are "qualified to perform this service" according to the manufacturer's specifications, and they are using the correct materials, fluids, parts and gases. ----- If nitrogen is better than air, then I would assume that the service technicians would have been instructed to install it as a part of the routine service operation. This is not my concern as a paying service customer. --------- I am willing to do the necessary research on this problem, and I will pass on this information to the service management of the dealership in an effort to resolve the problem in a professional manner. ----- I am not trying to paint GM in a negative light, rather what I want is this problem resolved. ---- If this takes a new set of tires, new wheels or a combination of both so be it! ----- Thank you again for your time and concern with regards to the sharing of information and your ideas.------ Please be assured that it is greatly appreciated. ----- Best regards. ------- Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 549
    I am not the correspondent with the three Malibus. We are just trying to help you understand that perhaps you really don't have a problem. As far as the tires losing more air as you suggest--28 to 26-etc. It doesn't work that way, unless there are real problems. Twenty-eight psi is probably the bottom pressure for a few months. Why won't to try our suggestions to monitor your pressures for a longer time in the way we have suggested?

    As far as the''trained techs"I have had my tires inflated to the maximum allowed pressure as stated on the sidewall by these trained techs. This was at a premium auto dealership. I always check my tires after being at a service centre. They are wrong more than they are right. Usually a young trainee checks the tires and is under dealership pressure to just get the job done.
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Thank you for your reply, and I do understand you logic. ------ But here is the all important question. ------ My other vehicle, (a 2007 V6 XLE Camry with 62,000 miles & aluminum / alloy wheels that is serviced in the same fashion), and right at this moment is sitting in the driveway beside the 2010 Malibu in same cold New Jersey weather, does not have this tire issue. ----- Why? ----- NOTE: ---- The malibu has been serviced three (3) times by the selling dealer, since the vehicle was purchased new, and each time the tire pressure dropped in all four tires after four weeks. ---- Monitoring for a longer period of time is subject to debate. --- I have two vehicles driven, and serviced in the same fashion, but respond in a different manner in this area! ------- Something must be different and it has nothing to do with the vehicle's name plate. ---- The only options are tires, wheels or valves and / or a combination of each. ------- Thank you for your patience and understanding. ----- I enjoy the conversation and the "give and take! ---- This is what makes America great. We each have our own opinions, and we have the freedom to express those opinions in a professional manner. ------ Best regards. ------- :shades: ;) :)
  • malexbumalexbu Posts: 169
    Dwayne, I am the one with the three: I have (in the present tense) two
    2005 sedans (steel wheels) and one 2006 Maxx (alloys). I have OEM
    Goodyear tires on one sedan, Sumitomo HTR T4 Ultra Premium Touring on
    the other, and a combo of two Goodyear Eagle ComforTreds and two
    Coopers on my Maxx.)

    I *do not* have "your problem" with either car: I do check the tire
    air pressure often (because I care) but have to add air only
    occasionally; I always do it when the cold weather starts.

    Your Camry may be better than your Malibu, or it may be that 62,000
    miles on it make a difference -- Camry's tires might have settled
    better than the ones on your much younger Malibu. To help the tires
    settle better, pump them to 33-35 PSi and drive for a couple of weeks.

    After Sears replaced a punctured tire on my Sedan a few years ago, I
    felt pretty bad watching the air pressure in it going down over time,
    pretty quickly. I pumped it up to 35 PSi -- and have never detected a
    systemic air pressure deterioration in it since then.

    You can continue to question us and your dealer, or you can just try
    to do what several people suggested you to try (pump your tires
    yourself on a weekend morning; record the pressure reading in similar
    conditions every week for a month). I'd do the latter :-)

    Your assumption about the dealers being qualified to do the car
    maintenance... Well, it's your car and your decision, I'll say :-)
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Hi Malexbu:

    I will try your suggestions. ----- Thank you for your ideas. ------ QUESTION: are your three vehicles 6 or 4 cylinder vehicles? ------ I purchased the 4 cylinder LTZ because I though that it had enough power with the six speed automatic transmission, and I was attracted by the 30 to 33 advertised MPG. ---- To date, I have only be able to get 27 MPG on the highway. ------ My V6 XLE Camry gets easily 30 MPG, and on a long trip I have hit 34 MPG. ---- I sacrificed performance for MPG on the Malibu. My Camry can run rings around the Malibu and still give me 30 MPG. ----- Compared to the Malibu, the Camry is a "Mustang in terms of performance!" ---- I like the Malibu in terms of style and handling, but I DO NOT THINK their technology comes close to a Toyota or Honda! ---- What ever happened to American Engineering? -------- (Note; --- I have tried different brands of fuel and different octanes, and the results are the same --- 27MPG. ----- Any ideas??????? Best regards.--------- Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • 88alfa88alfa Posts: 2
    Hi DMJ,
    I have a 2009 Malibu LT with the 4 cyl. 6 speed trans. (which is no longer available for the 4 cyl.). The best I mpg I got was 29 on a spring day with no AC and all highway. I am really disappointed with the 6 speed as it jumps around constantly unless your are on the highway. When I bring it in for servicing and ask them to check it they tell me it is performing "as designed". I think they tried to make a high performance from an engine that is too small. Does your transmission react in same way?
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Hi All:

    I just became aware of the following information. ----- If you burn out a headlamp, (low or high beam), or a turn signal lamp up front, ----- YOU CANNOT access them to replace the bulb without TAKING OFF THE FRONT BUMPER. ----- The dealer will quote you two (2) hours of labor plus the cost of the bulbs to perform this service. ---- If this is true, when one bulb is in need of replacement, (to make the service economical) , ---- you would have to replace all the bulbs, --- because if another bulb burned out a week later, you would be stuck with another bumper removal labor charge. ----- QUESTIONS ---- Does the original new vehicle warranty cover this service? ----- Does the GM extended warranty cover this service? ---- At $100.00 dollars an hour service charge, one bulb could cost the customer $250.00 dollars. ----- QUESTION: ----- Is this "logical engineering" with service in mind! ------- Best regards. -------------- Dwayne :shades: :confuse: ;) :) :lemon:
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Hi 88alfa:

    When I am on the road cruising at 60mph, if I press on the accelerator a little too hard, the transmission will down shift, I would assume to 5th gear, but it could be going down as far as 4th!!!!!!! ------ In the past, I owned a 2003 Honda 4 cylinder Accord. The acceleration was much better, and the transmission was not as sensitive as the Malibu. ---- I am disappointed with the performance of the four (4) cylinder on the highway. ----- My old Accord could pull away from the Malibu at 60 mph. ------ While the vehicle is a good copy of the Honda Accord, the four cylinder engine lacks the refinement of the Honda engine. ----- GM needs to do a "lot more work" if they want to compete with the Honda Accord. ---- The Buick Regal has a version of this engine with a turbo! ----- Maybe that would make the difference in performance, but the Regal is made in the Opel Plant in Germany. ----- I am seriously thinking of dumping this vehicle as soon as I rack up 36,000 miles, (even though I have a 6 year 100,000 mile GM extended warranty.) ---- I will probably go back to a Toyota or Honda. ---- No more American cars for me! ------ I have had it! --------- Best regards. ----- Dwayne :lemon: :confuse: :shades: ;) :)
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