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Chevrolet Malibu Maxx Electrical/Lighting Problems

meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Posts: 134
edited April 2015 in Chevrolet
Had to replace a tail light this week, and noticed that the socket was dry, no grease of any kind. Every car I have owned as far back as my 1982 Malibu, had grease in the socket to help fight corrosion as far as I could tell. Was wondering if anyone knows if this is just a money savings thing for GM or did they find a problem with grease in the sockets. If not, should I use white lithium as I believe was what was used in the past or would dielectric be better??? Thanks
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Comments

  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    That would work assuming your relay coil draws <300 mA. The relay could be used to drive the CHMSL. This is way the G6 works because on sedan model they have an incandescant CHMSL (not an LED). BCM provides power and so relay coil would be grounded on other side.

    All hypothetical of course :)
  • Thanks e2, I will let you know how it turns out, if I get around to doing it.
  • e2helper,

    Is it possible to turn off the function that causes the wipers to wipe several times after spraying washer fluid on the windshield? The problem is in subfreezing temps even high quality deicer fluid will freeze and smear on those final swipes. It makes for a dangerous condition when driving. Thanks for the help.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    No way to turn off - vehicles have worked this way as long as I can remember.

    I live in MI which often has subfreezing temps. Most of the time when it is really messy I find myself using a lot of washer fluid to clear off windshield when driving mainly from salt spray. That does smear but just another washer cycle clears it. Of course I use the defroster in vehicle to put some amount of heat on the windshield - that helps considerably.

    In fact manufacturers have considered even putting in a later delayed wipe to catch the dribble that wiper blades missed because it hit off the wiper pattern and falls back into it. That would exacerbate the complaint you have but there other customers who complain about the dribble.

    You might have seen a few vehicles with systems that either heat the wiper nozzles or better yet deliever a pre-heated "shot" of washer fluid. Mainly in uplevel vehicles now.
  • ml83ml83 Posts: 6
    There's a button on the left side of the knob on the shift lever of my Maxx, with a plus and minus sign on it. Can't find anything about it in the manual, and it doesn't seem to do anything. Can anyone tell me what it is for?
  • Put the Shift in "L" and you will be able to shift speeds "manually" by pushing the + or -.
  • ml83ml83 Posts: 6
    That was fast, thanks very much. I probably could have used that this morning in the snow here in western Mass.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    well first problem...seems the third brake light has stopped working on my 04 Maxx LT...looked in the owners manual..and doesnt seem to be tied to a fuse.....since its an LED light on a circuit board...wondering what would cause the failure..any ideas.....Im past warranty on mileage..so this will be on my dime....any TSBs out there on this issue?
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    You are correct, no fuse for CHMSL. It is driven directly by Body Computer. Does your cruise control still engage? That will indicate if the body computer output is still working. It can sometimes not work if there is a wiring issue somewhere. However on your vehicle (I think) you would also be seeing a Service Vehicle Soon Indicator if the BCM were having a problem with this output - do you have a Service Vehicle Soon light on?

    If neither of these issues then you are correct that you likely looking at CHMSL or open circuit on wiring to the CHMSL. Easiest way to distinguish between those would be looking for battery voltage ACROSS the CHMSL connector when brakes applied.

    No TSB out there on anything related to CHMSL itself. There is a TSB giving technicians information on a wiring type issue but that would also cause the 2 things I mentioned above.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    e2...thanks for the info.....no I dont have a service vehicle indicator light and the cruise control still engages...so Im betting you assumption about CHMSL or an open circuit.......in your opinion...would replacement of the CHMSL fix the issue....or would it be an internal wiring harness (hate this one)issue...a best guess?

    do you have the TSB number as well...thanks again
  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Posts: 134
    Was wondering if anyone is using the 2nd filament of the top light of the brake lights on the Maxx?? Stock it runs only as a running light, was thinking of changing it so comes on with the brakes too. Any thoughts??? I know the socket is only wired for 1 filament use, would mean changing the socket.
  • redmaxxredmaxx Posts: 627
    e2...thanks for the info.....no I dont have a service vehicle indicator light and the cruise control still engages...so Im betting you assumption about CHMSL or an open circuit.......in your opinion...would replacement of the CHMSL fix the issue....or would it be an internal wiring harness (hate this one)issue...a best guess?

    do you have the TSB number as well...thanks again


    If you replace the CHMSL, be very careful. It was the cause for a water leak into my hatch area on two ocassions. It was leaking from the factory, so the dealer tried to reseat it. That worked for a little bit, but it came back, so the dealer replaced it. Make sure you get the seal set right and don't damage it.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    I would suggest caution there. That portion of the lamp housing is smaller and likely isn't designed to handle the extra heat the larger bulb would give off.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    Ok - in that case the TSB I was thinking about would not apply.

    Do you have ability to check for voltage across the CHMSL connector? BTW I liked you using the term CHMSL :)

    pronounced chimzel!
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    I dont..but dont mind taking it to the dealer...im betting its the CHMSL..I priced them at two dealers...$58 and $39.04....GM List is the latter....and got it for $6 less than that thru GM parts direct....so will have it in hand....Im betting its a faulty circuit board in the LED assembly...but will still have the dealer check the connector...after I get to it through the rear hatch....figure I would save the hour labor to take the interior apart and to replace it..and just let them test and replace CHMSL....
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    thanks for the headsup.....will let the dealer do the install..Im just doing theup front interior work to get to the CHMSL.....hate to pay labor for them to do it..when the lamp itself is probably a 15 minute job to replace
  • redmaxxredmaxx Posts: 627
    You can test the CHMSL repair for leaks just by pouring a glass or bottle of water directly into the CHSML. Open the hatch and at the top of the glass there is a piece of plastic that runs the width of the glass. If it leaks it will come out one of the sides.
  • starpop1starpop1 Posts: 10
    I feel a little stupid, but can someone tell me how to open, or remove, the rear compartment fuse box cover in my 2005 MAXX LS. I better ask before I use force and break something.

    Thanks,
    Peter
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    Assuming you are looking at the actual fuse box and not the trim panel that covers the area, just look for a lever on top of the module all you do is press down on it and the cover will be released and flop toward you pivoting on the hinges on the bottom. The cover is attached at bottom although it can be removed, carefully. The fuse usage information is either on a label (2004/5) or laser-etched (2006) into the cover. In either case you need a flashlight to see it. Fuse size information is only found on the cover - owner manual doesn't show fuse size :surprise:

    There is a fuse puller in the IP fuse center which handles the small minifuses if you don't have another tool. There isn't a tool in vehicle for the larger fuses (called a J-Case). Dealers have a larger plastic fuse puller for that style however. I think I posted the part number a LONG time ago.
  • starpop1starpop1 Posts: 10
    I didn't communicate clearly because it is the trim panel over the rear fuse box I need to remove. I don't want to break it, but it is loose and rattling. Thank you e2helper. Peter
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    Sorry - I haven't looked at the back of a Maxx for a while to remember how it comes out. I am pretty sure you just pull it off. I didn't see anything in service manual to help jog my memory.

    Maybe someone else can help?
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,798
    I think you push the left rear fuse panel door at its top, at which it then unhooks itself and swings down. The fuse/relay block is just inside.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    I forgot to ask (since term "trim panel" could be misinterpreted). What COLOR is the trim panel you are trying to remove?

    If BLACK then you are looking at cover of the fuse block itself and comments from kurt and myself apply. If you are looking at a trim piece of the same color as rest of interior trim in your vehicle than we haven't addressed that part.
  • starpop1starpop1 Posts: 10
    It is gray and part of the interior trim of the MAXX. I will be taking the MAXX to the dealer on Tuesday to have one of the hatch struts replaced. I'll have the technician show me how to remove it. I've had the car for six months now, and I really enjoy driving it. The roads here in NE Pennsylvania are very poor so a few annoying interior rattles and groans have developed. They disappear when I am driving on decent roads. Other than that, no problems. Thanks, Peter.
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,798
    My Maxx has also gained a fair number of rattles on rough roads (on decent roads it's ok). The dealer(s) have no idea what is causing these.
  • starpop1starpop1 Posts: 10
    I was going to let everyone know how to open the interior trim panel over the rear fuse box, but you just did that. My dealer replaced the right side strut on the hatch of my MAXX yesterday. Boy, what an improvement. The creaks and groans when turning and the rattles at highway speed from the rear of the car are gone. Silence is golden.
  • maddmaxxmaddmaxx Posts: 81
    e2helper,

    Why does sometimes the tach & fuel gauges reset themselves after starting and then sometimes not?
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,798
    I'd appreciate knowing answer too ... I've seen it happen several times in my Maxx.
  • redmaxxredmaxx Posts: 627
    I think for issues like these GM recommends that all the connectors are intact (no individual wires coming out of the harness), clean and plugged in securely. Do they go out at the same time? If so I would suspect something between the IPC and the BCM.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    Sorry, I don't have immediate access to a Malibu to remind myself of how stuff like that works. I know on the similar Pontiac G6 that when you start the vehicle all the gauges sweep to full scale and then back (called "Cluster WOW!"). But I don't remember if the Malibu cluster did that or not.
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,798
    In the Malibu, might the gauges do a "negative cluster wow" every so often??
  • redmaxxredmaxx Posts: 627
    In the Malibu, might the gauges do a "negative cluster wow" every so often??

    No.
  • redmaxxredmaxx Posts: 627
    Sorry, I don't have immediate access to a Malibu to remind myself of how stuff like that works. I know on the similar Pontiac G6 that when you start the vehicle all the gauges sweep to full scale and then back (called "Cluster WOW!"). But I don't remember if the Malibu cluster did that or not.

    The Malibu doesn't do that, its a Pontiac thing. I personally don't like it. When I start the car, I want my gauges working NOW! :D
  • Does anyone know why the tail lights and the dash lights on my '05 Maxx LS don't work? There doesn't seem to be a fuse for them. The brake lights and turn signals work.
  • The tail lights (parking lights, I guess) and the dash lights don't work, but all the fuses are OK. Everything else works fine. Has anyone else had this problem?
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    You likely aren't looking at all the fuses. Your vehicle has the parking light relay in a rear electrical center. That fuse for that relay might be blown. Did you check the fuses there? If that fuse blows it will also make backlighting inoperative.

    It is fuse #6 on the label.
  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Posts: 134
    I am having a trailer hitch installed on my 05 Maxx LT. Will I need to use and trailer isolator for the electrical, or can I tap directly into the tail lights??
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    are they 880's.....is so gonna replace them with silverstars.....
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    ...was that a question pao?

    For 2004/5 model the fog lamps were #880L bulbs. That is long life version of 880 (lower candlepower)

    For the 2006 model fog lamps are now available on more models and the lamp design has changed to an H11 bulb - basically the same bulb as low beam headlamp. Wattage is 60 vs. 30 and the lamp draws over twice as much electrical power. Fusing and wiring were upgraded slightly in 2006 to handle these higher power lamps.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    it was and thanks
  • amazineamazine Posts: 11
    How did it go? Did you have to get a trailer iso or did you tap into the tail lights?
  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Posts: 134
    The guys who installed the hitch and the wiring said there were no special needs electrically. I haven't had a chance to hook the trailer up to it yet. But I have switched to LED trailer lights just to keep the additional load to a minimum.
  • pheislerpheisler Posts: 6
    Just got a 2005 Maxx LS and love it. It's really fun to drive and seems very well put together. One problem: the outside temperature readout on the radio display is not accurate. Right now it's stuck on 42 degrees and it's almost 60 outside. Is this a faulty sensor? Any suggestions?
  • beedublubeedublu Posts: 236
    I've had this happen, but usually in the dead of winter, at sub-freezing temps. Usually it clears up after being driven a few miles. But I presume wherever you are, temps are not below freezing.

    Having said that, be advised that there are a number of electronic gremlins in this car's Driver Info Center (and elsewhere) that mysteriously appear and then disappear. The engine temp gauge reading zero even when the engine is fully warm is one example. Mine did it for a few days over 12000 miles ago and has been perfect ever since.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    Possibly it is a sensor or wiring but you have to understand how the function operates. Because the sensor is located next to a heat source, under certain conditions the temperature display will not increase when the vehicle is stationary or moving slowly. Also if the vehicle has been sitting for a short enough time that the underhood temperature might be greater than ambient, the system will not use the current reading and will revert to the one when the vehicle was shut off. You might have been in one of those situations

    If you are sure the vehicle was sitting with ignition OFF for over 3 hours and you didn't use remote start to start vehicle then when you get in vehicle you should expect the temperature display to reflect the actual temperature surrounding the sensor.

    I think I have reviewed some additional details in earlier posts and would be happy to do it again if you are interested :)

    BTW - this display has nothing to do with the coolant temperature gauge.
  • drejdrej Posts: 119
    Hi, Overall what have you folks used for adaptor wiring harnesses. (I'm installing a hitch on my 05 Maxx LT this weekend "haul bikes and light trailers) Has someone easily tapped-in to the harness using the standard 4 straight connector. What wires please. Thanks in advance.. D~
  • pheislerpheisler Posts: 6
    Thanks for the info. Since I posted my question it has seemed to work correctly, at least most of the time. It's mostly in town, when I'm driving more slowly, that it somethimes seems stuck on the wrong temp. Do you know exactly where this sensor is located?
  • maddmaxxmaddmaxx Posts: 81
    I'd like to know if anyone has had problems with the front turn signals/parking lamps. My driver's side went out first and the dealer replaced the lamp assembly under basic warranty stating the socket had burned. Now at 73k, the passenger one quit and I noticed the amber lens inside had literally burned and there is smoke/burn damage on the chrome above it. GMPP will not cover this. Anybody had a similar experience? Thanks.
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,798
    but no scorched lenses. sounds like badly corroded contacts in some lens units.
  • e2helpere2helper Posts: 1,002
    #06-08-42-004A
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