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Has anyone noticed a vibration throughout the car with the brakes applied like at a stoplight. Mine feels like kids rustling in the back seat.
I have noticed a squeel generally only at idle coming from the engine that sounds a little bit like something rubbing inside the motor.
The brakes shimmy slightly and make an awful noise while braking in the rain or just when they get wet.
I have contemplated taking it in to have the problems checked out but we all know the answers we get from service shops on such issues. The car now has 19K and the dealer that changed the rotors the first time said that at this high of mileage it would not be covered under warranty as it is normal wear and tear even though the new ones have only been on for 7K miles.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for such long postings.
This has been just simply a fantastic car for me. I have had it only since last December, but drive quite a bit and now have 18,000 miles on it. I broke the brakes in slowly and have had NO problems.
It hasn't been back to the dealer for anything since December. Your brake problems sound like the problems found on the '97-'99 Malibu's.
Don't feel like you shouldn't take it back to the dealer because you feel they won't find anything. Just keep documentation about your visits in case you need to use it to support your position in the future.
Chevy seems to have fixed most of their Malibu problems by mid '99 and on. Sorry to hear you're having a few. Just keep after them and keep your documentation.
I get the SAME EXACT problem, the brakes also seem less effective as well (but this could be caused just cuz its wet).
I have never had my rotors replaced or anything (Yet!) so they are still stock.
Also could you describe that vibration you feel at a stop light a little more? I too had a quite violent vibration that shook the entire car which turned out to be a bad drivers side radiator fan. I still get a slight vibration inside the car at idle which i havent been able to track down yet.
Damn i thought it was just me with this turn signal thing. Although it hasnt happend lately i have noticed it in the past.
Perhaps our cars were built by the same guy
I'm going to take the car in for that wet brake problem to see what they say, oh yeah it appear to be only coming from the front passenger side for me is it the same for you? I'll let you know what they say. I probably wont take it in for another week or so though becuase of school etc.
Has anyone started up an Egroups email list for our malibu's yet? if not i might start one up, i find it easier to reply to messages etc.
If anyone wants to email me about the Car or Egroups thing you can at [email protected]
About 3600 miles on this Malibu, just got the 3k service done last week, no major problems yet (that we know of).
I had read at other Edmund board (Impala?) that with any air condition it is important not to use it much in the recirculate mode. Now and then is OK, but generally air condition must work in the vent-through mode. Otherwise the mold will grow. I think the same info can be found in the car manual.
I had read also at the board, that to kill the mildew, the condition must be fryed (max heat, max fun, 10 minutes in recirc mode, 5 minutes in the vent-through one). Probably need repeating several times to kill all the mildew. I did this couple of times during the last wet summer, even without founding any mildew - just in case.
Some of your Malibu's "Problems" seem to be the by product of abuse rather than normal wear and tear:
* Radio antenna falling apart (What??)
* Door rubber seals getting caught in the door's glass
* Rear window blow off in the highway (What the heck???)
Let me not continue because I find this to be too hilarious.
Did you ever have the car serviced at the dealer???? Did you ignore some problems until they got progressively worse????(Negligence?)
"Mold & Mildew growing in the Air conditioner" Of course my friend! Any car's A/C operating in a very hot and humid climate will develop mold inside the evaporator and air outlet lines behind the dashboard. Do you know the correct procedure to get rid of mold????
Guess what, don't even have to take it to the dealer for that.
With the windows closed, run the heater and fan to the max position (Make sure the Recirc mode is on)exit the car, leave engine and heater running for 20 minutes. The heater's heat will kill and burn the excess mold in the air outlet lines. Repeat procedure as necessary until smell goes away. After you have done this run the heater with the "Fresh" position on...this will discard the remains of the mold out of the exterior vents.
What to do to prevent this?
Simple, when you run the A/C, avoid leaving it in the "recirc" position all the time. This will decrease the chances of mold to grow ever again in your system.
Based on your compilation of problems, I guess your car has failed to perform due to your obvious lack of automotive and car care knowledge. Sorry but based on your posts it sounds that way.
Good luck with that lemon proceeding..an uphill battle awaits you.
I think fastfoodman must be one unhappy ex-GM employee or Ford salesman.
Any current owners notice this or anything else odd during long distance driving?
But the Buick Regal is definitely even more comfortable. I even would say, much more comfortable. Very probably the same is with Bonneville.
I have driven to NJ and back ( from Massachusetts 0 and haven't had any problems with the seats, actually they are quite comfortable, probably not as comfy as teh Impala but comfortable.
The reason for my post however is this. I had to stop driving my malibu after I had a "blonde" moment this weekend. I pulled out in front of a Chevy truck, full size.
Both vehicles are totaled. My font end is delapidated and considerably shorter. "up to the firewall" my husband says. At least on the passenger side. The hood creased to offset the blow, and all four tires are twisted in different directions. while I am a little shaken, and suffer from a concussion and cervical sprain..(hence forgive any misspellings or incomplete sentences), I am alive. Nothing is broken and I credit that to the way my Malibu was built. It protected me when I needed it most.
As for the blinker.. mine did that for a while. As for the air conditioner.. I am a woman with no mechanical sense and I figured out how do turn on the ventilator when my cigarette smoke and the humid summer started taking its toll. DUH!
The brakes squeaked a little here and there, but they always stopped when I had the foresight to use them.
My antenna never fell off, my seat belts never had a problem, as a matter of fact they cut my seat belt off to get me out of the car. And not because they had to, because they did not want to move me anymore than necessary while taking me out of the car.
The only problem I ever had after the unfortunate transmission failure was the ABS light kept coming on. They repaired it while I was in warranty, but it still came on every now and again. Any one else have a problem with it?
As for a bad interior.. I was pleased with mine. The kids ran through that car like it never cost them a dime and I had not one tear or worn spot. Just some ketchup that a wet washcloth took care of just fine. Post is getting long just wanted to credit my Malibu for safety, and guys no matter what anyone says, I found out Sunday, that is all that really matters!
The car has been a great value for us. When you consider all the cars available in this price range, the Malibu comes out on top almost every time. Add to that the incentives that GM throws on and it is a great deal!
* Poor side crash test scores (2 stars on the 2000 model)
* Problems with brakes durability.
Otherwise the car is really nice and it has changed my previous view on the Malibu.
Are these critical issues solved in the 2001 Malibu??
But side impact rating would probably still be the same.
We have a 98 Malibu, with the very low side crash rating of 1. Notwithstanding the steel cage design (GM wrote about it about in the brochure). For the later models the rating was increased to 2.
I think this is somehow related with the narrow body. Just less place to bend, comparing with wider cars, e.g., with Ford Taurus or Chevy Impala.
The rating does not tell the whole story, though. Malibu is capable to evade some accidents.
The 3.1l v-6 GM engine, even the weaker old modification in the 98 Malibu, have a rather high torque at low rpm. It means a very good acceleration from 0 to 30 mph or so. Comparable from the lights with the v-6 Camry/Accords (cannot compete, though, after 30-40 mph, i.e. at highways), and much better than with most 4-cylinder cars.
My wife avoided a couple of side-crashes while driving the Malibu, the both cases with another car running the red light. Running not just after yellow, when it is reasonable to expect it, but long after the light had switched.
The both time she noticed the running car a split second before it had to ram her, and stepped on gas. With weaker engine, she could not avoid the accidents. At the best, the rear of our car would be smashed. But the engine had carried her away from the crashes.
The Impala has much better reliability stats than the Malibu. A much more solid car through.
I do not know much about the wear of the Impala tires. Given it first appeared at dealerships only last summer, it is safe to assume that most of owners did not put even 23k miles on their Impalas. Not enough for a good statistics.
Though, if Impala have the same Goodyear LS tires as Regal, a lot of owners reported problems with the tires after 20k to 30k miles. Let us wait and see about Impala: it have a somewhat different suspension, or at least the suspension is tuned differently, and it may result in different tire wear than with Regal.
My Firestone mechanic said the tires are still OK, and suggested to inflate them a bit higher than according to the GM specification. 29/32 psi for the read/front, instead of 26/29.
After this the squeal did not disappear, but substantially decreased.
Though, while the tires are just OK, they are not great now. My old 88 Ford Taurus, with new Firestone 360 tires, currently holds the road better than Malibu with old tires. I am planning to replace the Malibu tires, possibly, even before the winter.
According to the Tirerack user survey, the best tires for Malibu are even not Michelin, but the Firestone SH-30. Personally, I have no experience and no opinion on the subject, except that with my driving style the performance tires probably would be better than the touring ones.
'97 with 96,889 miles on it. It's a great looking
car and seems to run great. But these miles are bothering me. Any comments?
100k miles is always serious, but Malibu have a very good engine and transmission. If the car you want to buy was in good hands (regular oil change, not too much driving at redline, etc.), I would not expect serious problems in this department.
Concerning the brake problem, mentioned in the previous posting.
Early Malibu used to have weak rotors, prone to warping. This is not a safety item (car stops even better), but the rotors are eating pads. I would consider the normal life of brakes to be something like 60k miles; possibly 40k - depending on driving conditions and style. But my rotors were warped at 15k, and I had to replace them at 22 or 23k. A lot of people reported here even worse mileage.
A lot of owners of new 97-98 Malibu were very unhappy, because the brake service was not covered by warranty. At dealership and with genuine GM parts, the replacement costs something like $400.
Later GM made improvement to the parts, and currently the rotors are not particularly bad: according to complaints on this board, the warping still happens, but not more often then with other cars equipped with disk brakes.
With 100k on odometers, this probably does not matter, even more than at an independent mechanic and with aftermarket parts the service would not cost so much. Besides, with so high mileage, the original brakes most probably were already replaced with a better design, either GM or aftermarket.
What would bother me more with the your selection, is the general quality of the GM manufacturing and assembly. At least my Malibu used to have a lot of small problems, like sticky door sensors (the car's electronics thought the door is open), squeaky strut or dead radio speaker. Half time the problems were cured by a simple lubrication, and, most of time, took about 1/2 hour to one day to fix. But, out of warranty, this adds on an the maintenance could became expensive.
Again, with a higher mileage, you probably would not expect a totally trouble-free car.
Mentioned this when changed oil. The dealer's technician found and removed debris. For free: it was a very small job. After this the fan was quiet.
Well, at least less noisy, than when I bought the car, used but almost new, with 15k miles, 14 months after it was build. The fan is quiet at speeds 1 and 2, somewhat noisy at 3, and substantially noisy at 4 and 5. I think, it's the vents grids rattle.
GM made improvement to the parts, and currently the rotors are not particularly bad:
according to complaints on this board, the warping
still happens, but not more often then with other
cars equipped with disk brakes.
For the record,
My last car (before the Malibu) was a 1990 Camry, bought it new and at 145 K, never had a problem with warped rotors.
I subscribe to Consumer Record and have their Buying Guides.
According to the CR survey, as in the 2000 Buying Guide (i.e. the 1999 data), problems with brakes reported 2 to 5% of owners of the 98 Malibu, and 9.3% to 14.8% of owners of 97 Malibu. CR does not publish the exact numbers, only the above ranges.
In other words, even for 97-98, when the Malibu rotors were considered very bad, only a small minority of owners had the warping problem.
Probably a lot of Malibu owners will drive for years without the problem. Some will drive the original rotors past 100k, other will replace them at 60-90k, and this also is not bad.
I believe, that the real percentage of the rotor problem is even lower than reported by CR: who would like to fill a long survey, if he have no complaints, right?
BTW, CR do not like the reliability of Malibu and do not recommend it any more.
On the other hand, the warping can happen with everybody. And sometimes it is unavoidable. Just brake very hard before hitting a puddle... This is what I mean by the inherent problems with the disk brakes.
I did bring in the Malibu to the Chevrolet dealership. The manager and a technician did drive it & confirmed that the ride is definitely not as smooth as it should be. However, they can only replace the suspension with manufacturer's specs (i.e., I wouldn't feel any difference).
Luckily, I live in a state (NJ) where after 2 more unsuccessful attempts to fix my problem, I can take legal action against Chevrolet via the NJ Lemon Law.
Regardless, if Chevrolet or the dealership could 'soften' the suspension, then the car is a PLEASURE to drive. Otherwise, I could drive over a dime and identify if it's heads or tails !!!
Has anybody had a similar problem with their Malibu?