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Chevrolet Malibu Maxx Electrical/Lighting Problems



  • kevin67kevin67 Member Posts: 5
    Sorry about that. Looks like you have hit the nail on the head though. It is a 2004 Malibu Maxx and it is pretty much loaded with everything except the DVD player.

    Can you elaborate on the wire. Just to recap the issues, here they are again.

    1. Door locks operate by themselves while driving. (lock and unlock)
    2. Key fob lock button does not work.
    3. Key fob remote start does not work - probably because I can't lock the car.
    4. Factory alarm automatically sets every time I leave the car. It flashes in the gauge area the padlock over the car picture.

    Any additional words of advice would be great.


  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Member Posts: 134
    'the only info I have is what I have read in this forum. I have an 05 maxx and have not had the problems your are talking about. Not yet at least. I can remember reading a couple of people had some similar issues, and it was found to be a chaffed wire running to the rear if I recall corretly. You may want to run a search to see if you can find the posts. Good Luck.

  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Member Posts: 134
    Does anyone know if you can adjust the twilight sensor for the auto headlights??
    I am getting real tired of driving on a sunny morning with my sunglasses on and still have full headlights on. The damn sensor doesn't seem to recognize daytime. It does work any time after about 11am when it's sunny. But really seems to be defaulted to lights on way to much. Has been like this since new. And for some stupid reason big brother GM made it impossible to override turning off the lights in Canada like you can in the US. The only time we can override the lights is when in park, now ain't that useful?? I asked the dealer why it was done like this, he said it was mandated by the Canadian govt. Funny how Ford, Honda, Toyota, Nissan, and Chrysler don't seem to have to do it, just GM....MMMM the Canadian govt. must really have it in for GM.
  • sybsyb Member Posts: 10
    I have a 2004 Malibu Lt v6 with just over 118,000 miles...
    My left turn signal just started showing a fast flash indicating a burned out bulb, which I replaced...The bulb lights up but does not blink when I try the left hand turn signal...Tried reversing the right hand bulb with the left hand side...the right hand side continues to work while the left although is lit doe's not blink...
    Hopefully some-one can be of some assistance with what might be the issue and solution...thanks in advance...

  • paopao Member Posts: 1,867
    not trying to be smart...but are you sure you replaced the bulb with the right one....should be double filament....does it burn as bright with the daytime driving light function on...

    the blinking is controlled by the ECM or BCM, dont know if you have a problem there or not....128K on my 04 Maxx LT
  • novatucnovatuc Member Posts: 3
    Are you talking about the daytime running lights? As far I can tell, my headlights are on because they are supposed to be on. The twilight sensor turns the rest of the lights on, tail lights etc. at dusk. All vehicles sold in Canada, including motorcycles have some form of daytime running lights.
  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Member Posts: 134
    You must have an 06 or 07 on these years the headlight were the daytime running lights on the 04 and 05 (mine) the front turn signals are the DRL's. My problem is the full headlight system just doesn't like to let go. And I know it's only a very small amount, but the car uses more gas with all the lights on, and at $1.35 per liter, every little bit helps.
  • paopao Member Posts: 1,867
    dont know about the canadian builds....US builds you can simply turn the auto light function off by twisting the switch on the arm and the chimes ring telling you the auto function is disabled and the DIC shows the auto lights re-engages everytime you turn the car back on

    as far as the headlights burning causing a reduction in gas mileage......your belts are still turning always charging your electrical system.....regardless of the power drain...
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Member Posts: 1,798
    My '04 USA spec Maxx LS had the same issue - Headlights came on way too early (sun being near horizion was enough light decrease to set mine off. Unfortunately there is no way to adjust the thing. Workaround was as previous: switching Headlights to manual mode for those lighting situations.
  • meandmymaxxmeandmymaxx Member Posts: 134
    Unfortunately the Canadian models don't have that option. The only time we can override the auto lights is when in park. Some useful.
  • syb1syb1 Member Posts: 4
    Thanks for your help...problem problem with the bulb...issue was with the contact points...used some baking soda and old toothbrush to clean up the socket and contact points, and I am now happly blinking agian... :):)
  • cpinkhamcpinkham Member Posts: 7
    Sounds like your body control module (BCM) has gone south. We had the exact same problems with our '98 Chrysler minivan and replaced the thing and later had it rebuilt, $800 for new one from the factory, $225 to rebuild it recently through
    It may be a relay or fuse(s), if you want to try swapping similar relays around and check fuses, go for it, but with electrical things I suggest just going straight to a reputable, independent auto electric shop. Good luck!
  • DJOHNSON55DJOHNSON55 Member Posts: 1
  • scanman88gtscanman88gt Member Posts: 16
    The passenger side headlight housing on my '06 Maxx is vibrating while driving and causing the light coming out of the bulb to "shimmy". There are two bolts at the top of the lamp housing which hold the housing tight against the radiator support. The bottom of the lamp housing has two "posts" or pegs which line up with and fit into two square holes in the sheet metal behind the housing. There is a good deal of space between these two "posts" and the inside of these two square holes, which is why I'm able to move the bottom of the lamp housing up and down.

    Is there some kind of clip or fastener that I am missing which are supposed to attach to these two square holes in the sheetmetal which are supposed to hold these two "posts" firmly, in order to keep the bottom of the lamp housing from shaking?
  • loumarloumar Member Posts: 2
    First thing to check is the brake light switch. It may be defective or have come loose. Good luck.
  • loumarloumar Member Posts: 2
    Both of my headlamps were doing the same thing on my 05. I used double sided tape on the ledge the headlights sit on where the posts go through the holes. Worked well for me. Others I've heard have found rubber grommets at the hardware store that make for a tighter fit for the posts.
  • paopao Member Posts: 1,867
    I also believe there are two metal tabs...careful they are sharp..that can be bent forward to hold the pegs/posts at the have to feel around for them in the has been posted on here before
  • scanman88gtscanman88gt Member Posts: 16
    I know that there are two sheet metal tabs below the lamp housing that coincide exactly with the position of the "posts", which are part of the lamp housing. In fact the two posts line up with these sheet metal tabs and are centered within the square holes in these tabs when the lamp housing is installed. It just seems like there is some hardware missing...similar to the nuts that are mounted on a clip of some sort, when you're attaching sheet metal underneath the car or like they use on the splash shields under some GM cars. I guess I could probably try cutting a small length of vacuum hose and slip that over the posts to make up the difference between the inside of these square holes in the sheet metal tabs and the outside diameter of the lamp housing posts. I suppose I could also remove the drivers side headlamp assembly to see what is used under it, since it doesn't exhibit any of these vibration symptoms that the passengers side lamp housing does.
  • andymac43andymac43 Member Posts: 1
    I need to remove the dome light base from the headliner without wrecking the headliner. My dome light switch melted and the switch is included in the base. I've got the bezel and cover off already. Help?
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    For no apparent reason the remote start has quit. Maxx 2004, 60k miles.

    Anyone had the problem? Fix?
  • comem47comem47 Member Posts: 399
    You didn't state whether you ruled out the battery being bad in the keyfob. (or tried the other keyfob , also with a new battery). Other than that, I've not had problems.
    I also assume you tried this close to the vehicle to eliminate distance as a problem. Did it not respond at all (not light the headlights?) or just fail to crank the engine?
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    Keyfob eliminated as problem. When keyfob activated, Maxx lights respond but no start. Had it to Chevy dealer for quick check by tech writer and he verified my diagnosis.

    Also, I disconnected the car battery for a reset - no change.

    So most items of the remote start system seem to be functioning except starting the engine.
  • comem47comem47 Member Posts: 399
    Unfortunately I haven't gotten around to buying a service manual for my wife's 2006 Maxx yet (she just went through her 36K warranty about 3 months ago). In the past I have usually done most of my own servicing that doesn't require special tools but not having the service manual I can only venture a guess. If you stand next to the car with the hood open and hear a click at when the engine should crank you may be in luck (a stuck or burned contact relay or broken wire connection to the starter solenoid -and you may be able to open up the remote control unit to fix). If it isn't that I'm pretty sure the replaceable part is the whole unit itself (that's the way it is these days, not stocking minor sub assemblies). I haven't looked to see where this unit might be, but I'll take a look today and see what happens when I activate her remote start and see if the unit and wiring are something one can easily find and get at. Maybe someone else owns the manual and can see things like the wiring color, etc. My gut feel is the solenoid/starter is buried under the car so it wouldn't be easy to put a volt meter to the terminals to trace for wiring breaks. I'll let you know if I can offer any more info later.
  • comem47comem47 Member Posts: 399
    Update: I see my troubleshooting technique won't work as described, but I see a possible reason why things wouldn't work. You cannot remote start with the hood open, but you can start the car with the key when the hood is open. I couldn't locate where the hood interlock switch is (maybe it's a mercury switch). When I try to remote start it with the hood open the parking lights will flash instead of starting the car. So it's possible the hood interlock switch is your problem (If you can find it). Check and see if your parking lights flash, after you've already had the headlight flash when remote locking first.

    Good luck and hopefully this is the problem.
  • kevin67kevin67 Member Posts: 5
    I have a 2004 as well and my remote start stopped functioning. It will not lock/unlock the doors as well. I have ruled out the battery in the remote. This was also coupled with the doors locking and unlocking by themselves. Not sure if you are having these same problems. I am going to be troubleshooting it today and I do own the manual.
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    "Not sure if you are having these same problems."

    No other problems - just no remote start.

    On an older car I once had, the doors locking and unlocking by themselves was caused by water/moisture in the controller.
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    "So it's possible the hood interlock switch is your problem (If you can find it)."

    Hood interlock switch is attached to the hood locking latch.

    Haven't determined if that's the problem.
  • sgr5516sgr5516 Member Posts: 163
    I'm sure I read somewhere that the hood interlock switch is built into the hood latch itself and cannot be separately replaced. The whole hood latch must be replaced. You could confirm or rule it out though by finding the wire(s) that go to the switch and bypass the switch.

    I have a 2006 malibu maxx and recently both my fobs stopped working or they worked only intermittantly. When they did not work I could not lock or unlock doors or remote start. I replaced the batteries, but that did not resolve problem. I turns out that the metal clip that holds the battery is soldered to the circuit board and the solder joint broke, but not enough to notice it. Car was still under warranty, so dealer replaced both fobs and all is working again.

    If car was out of warranty I would have tried to resolder the battery clip to the board myself before buying a new fob. I did some checking on internet and you can purchase them online for less than dealer cost, but only the dealer can program then to work with your car and they need all the fobs as they must all be programmed, even if one of them was working.

    Good luck.
  • sgr5516sgr5516 Member Posts: 163
    If engine starts OK with the key, then problem is not the starter or the starter solenoid.

    Have you checked the driver information center. A menu item in there lets you disable remote start. Make sure it is still turned on.

    Also, remote start won't work if your check engine light is on.

    I just tried to remote start my maxx with the hood open. The lights flash when you push and hold the start button, but engine does not start. That is what is happening for you, so the hood latch/switch is most likely the problem.
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    "Have you checked the driver information center."?


    Also reajusted hood latch - loosened the bolts and moved it to different positions - no change.
  • comem47comem47 Member Posts: 399
    You will have to either short out the wires or open up the wires depending on whether the hood interlock switch is designed as normally open or normally closed to verify the actual internals of the switch being bad or OK. (If you have an ohmmeter and can find the wires coming from it you can as an alternate remove the wiring from the switch if there is a plug and put the meter on the contacts and check switch operation by opening and closing the switch and watching for a short on the meter. If the switch doesn't have a plug you can stick common pins through the wire insulation into the individual wires for meter access points and see if the switch works that way, or lacking a meter just short or open the wiring and see if the car starts. Of course there is a possibility the connection could be bad at the other end of the wiring or somewhere along the path. Other than this it's back to things like a bum internal relay in the control unit or wiring out to the solenoid, but
    I think the flash of the parking lights(if you get that response) indicates a detected fault on the input end, not output connections problems. I'm not sure where the remote control box is located but too bad you can't locate another Malibu owner to swap boxes as a test of whether the box internally is at fault.
  • sgr5516sgr5516 Member Posts: 163
    I have the manuals for a 2004 maxx. With remote start, the connector to the hood latch switch has 3 wires. The black wire is the ground. The purple wire signals the body control module that hood is closed, when it is connected to the black wire. The pink with black stripe wire signals the BCM that hood is open when it is connected to the black wire. So, remove connector and insert a jumper wire between the purple and black wires. If car remote starts, replace hood latch. If still no remote start, further check with ohm meter. Verify there is no open in the black wire. Verify pink wire is not shorted to ground (BCM will think hood is open). verify purple wire is not open (BCM will never get hood closed signal).

    Since your lights flash when you hold the remote start button on the fob, the transmitter and receiver are working (the BCM knows you requested a remote start). The BCM must also sense the following conditions for remote start to work: Remote Start enabled in DIC; Shifter in park; key not in ignition; 4-way flashers not on; door lock button pressed before remote start button; check engine light not on; no DTC codes stored in history in the engine control module. If there is a problem in any of these circuits, remote start is disable until the problem is fixed and the codes are cleared from the ECM. Unfortunately, you almost have to take it to dealer or some other shop with scan tool and knowledge of how this all works.
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    Thanks for the manual check and the excellent diagnosis – much appreciated!
    I'll check/jump the wires referenced to confirm the possibilities. All other factors mentioned are ok – the only other unknown, excluding the hood switch or wiring, is if any DTC codes are set.

    If anyone has experience with a scan tool that is recommended – I could buy one and give that a try to check for codes that may be set, and for future use. I have a laptop, so a diagnostic system using a laptop or a diagnostic stand–alone device would both work.
  • drejdrej Member Posts: 119
    Hi, Has there been any resolve to this turn signal issue. (New fixture? or something) My 05 with 65K miles has been acting up on the 3rd left marker/turn signal bulb (& yes I put in the correct double filament bulb)
    It works for a week then kaput.
    I'll replace again and see what happens. D~
  • desmondluodesmondluo Member Posts: 2
    I met the same problem of remote start recently. The keyless entry on the keyfob is working but the remote start does not work. No parking light flash, no response at all when I push the button for 3 seconds, maybe tiny sound from the hood area (need further identify tomorrow). One thing I need to mention is that, my check engine light is on recently when I turn the key into stage 'II', which is before ignition, after I turn the key and start the engine, the light will be off. I am not sure if this is the reason.
  • paopao Member Posts: 1,867
    I had the socket replaced back in 04 under warranty and that solved my problem....also.....check to insure your contacts are good....I have found they work loose and need cleaning every now and then.......

    you can get the socket at parts.....and its apparently easy to replace
  • hhmaxhhmax Member Posts: 44
    the first hot day of summer and my blower fan stopped working in the middle of blowing. I kept the fan on ON position and it would all of a sudden come alive again. During the drive, it would be blowing for a while then stop.

    Took the car to the dealer and they said it was a open circuit resistor on the blower fan. While waiting for the parts, the fan has been working fine.

    Any ideas? Why an open circuit resistor would cause the fan to be intermittently come and go?
  • comem47comem47 Member Posts: 399
    I don't have the manual, but making a guess it sounds like the connection to the resistor is bad (intermittent mechanical connection at the switch or resistor end or else a poor solder connection). If the resistor burned open it would not come back and suddenly work again.
  • hhmaxhhmax Member Posts: 44
    thanks. I had doubts also that the resistor was open. But the dealer changed the resistor (C$218 parts + C$58 labor). nonethless. It's under GMPP with zero deductible so I didn't complain.

    I once had the driver power seat not moving and it is fine when I brought it to the dealer. It's been fine ever since.
  • hhmaxhhmax Member Posts: 44
    do you know where is the blower fan located? which connectors should I check. The dealer changed the resistor but didn't fix the problems.
  • comem47comem47 Member Posts: 399

    As I mentioned previously I do not have the manual. Perhaps someone else can help, but since you're under warranty I'd have the dealer make good on his work (tell him to be sure to wiggle ALL the wiring and connections this time while checking the operation of the fan)
  • maxxlibertymaxxliberty Member Posts: 82
    Remote no-start problem solved – special thanks to sqr5516 and comen47.

    First I went to Autozone for a free scan – no codes were reported. From the comments on this forum the next best guess was the hood latch/switch. It may be a common problem since the dealer had the part in stock. I Installed the new assembly and now remote start functioning again.

    To save some cash maybe should have just jumped the wires that sqr5516 mentioned and not gotten new part.
  • alsteck1alsteck1 Member Posts: 1
    The outside temperature display on my "06 Maxx often gets "stuck" reading the same temp for hours even after the outside temp has changed by as much as 20 degrees. I know that this is normal to some extent. A couple of years ago I called my local dealer to ask about this and the guy on the other end explained that the display could be reset manually by holding down one button on the dash while pressing another button. Problem is, I can remember which buttons and a call back to the same dealer brought the following reaction: duh! Does anybody know the details to this little trick?
  • dancesdances Member Posts: 1
    My 2007 malibu maxx keeps arming itself and i go to the manual and do everything the manual says and it still wont disarm itself. It causes my battery to die and i have to jump it to get it started. sometimes that doesn't even work. I don't know what to do.
  • frayedgnotfrayedgnot Member Posts: 6
    Does anyone know if you can replace an instrument panel lamp? The top right portion of my 2004 instrument panel is dark. The dimmer adjusts the other portions of the panel just fine and all other interior lamps, but this one section is dark. I think the instruments are back-lit by LED, and those are sometimes hard-wired to the cluster on other cars. I'm hoping I don't have to change out the whole thing, just wanted to ask before taking everything apart to look.
  • lne216lne216 Member Posts: 13
    Car is out of warranty. My car starter has stopped working. Battery died and it stopped working. Replaced battery and car starter will not work. Either does the electronic start, but that I guess for another post.

    Is there anything I can do without taking it in and having the dealership charge an arm and a leg?
  • ottawamaxxottawamaxx Member Posts: 1
    Thanks maxxliberty! I just connected the wires on my 05 LT as you suggested and saved myself $200 for the part and $160 labour. My wire colours may have been different though (Black, Purple and Yellow?). I'm colourblind, so no guarantees, but I didn't see a black stripe on the 2 non-blacks.
  • jenjen7jenjen7 Member Posts: 1
    The front driver's side blinkner and back passenger side blinker went out at the same time. I replaced them both, twice now actually, (and yes I used the correct bulbs) and they burn, but they don't blink. Checked the fuses and they are fine. Any ideas?
  • tyoungstyoungs Member Posts: 2
    2007 Malibu Maxx - antenna mast broke off in car wash - where do you access the underside of mounting boss to replace the part the mast attaches to (stud broke off flush with mounting boss)
    not sure if you go through the interior or if you access through the wheel well??
  • cetaceousonecetaceousone Member Posts: 1

    I am having an issue with the Resume/Accel feature with the cruise
    control on my 05 Maxx LS.

    On a recent trip, the Resume/Accel feature would intermittently stop working.
    Pressing the rocker switch up for the this feature would have no effect-no
    increase in speed and/or would not resume a previously set speed. It would started working again after stopping for gas. It then quit working after a bit.

    Can anyone point me in the right direction?
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