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Chevrolet Impala Steering/Suspension



  • I have had the intermediate steering shaft replaced on my 2003 impalla and now have a wherring sound when I turn the steering wheel. The dealer has lubed a bushing and this did not help so they say I will just have to live with it. If you have the radio on you can just hear it but it is something I do not want to live with as I drive lots without tunes playing. any one have ideas as I only have 4 months of warranty left.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    I know this will sound like an obvious answer that you've probably already checked, but take a look at your power steering fluid level and see if it's full or not. I had a whirring/whining sound coming from my 2000 Impala that only showed up when making sharp left turns under acceleration (like pulling out to turn left at an intersection). It finally got annoying enough that I took it to a local shop, and all they did was top off the fluid (which was low) and that solved the problem. They said the reservoir was hard to get to (back between the engine and the firewall I think), so it's easy to overlook when doing other routine fluid checks.
  • Thanks for the reply. The level is good . The noise is up in the steering colume. Any more feed back would be good. thanks
  • I have had my steering shaft replaced twice and now they are telling me that it just needs to be lubed. Chevy does not know how to fix the problem and will not give you any assistance with the cost of the repair. ($1,100). They will tell you that it is a faulty part but they do not have a recall on it yet so you do have to pay for it. They said it is very common in the Impala and does not cause a threat but you can leave it if you want to put up with the noise!! and they wonder why people are going foreign!!
  • pcameronpcameron Posts: 7
    When I had that steering shaft problem on my 2003 Impala, the dealer knew right away that it needed to be taken apart and lubed (or replaced) and they did it. On warranty. It is a chronic problem, and GM absolutely should take care of you. Make some noise, and they will reimburse you.
  • pcameronpcameron Posts: 7
    When I had that steering shaft problem on my 2002 Impala, the dealer knew right away that it needed to be taken apart and lubed (or replaced) and they did it. On warranty. It is a chronic problem, and GM absolutely should take care of you. Make some noise, and they will reimburse you.
  • It will happen again in about 12k miles. I have talked with many people at GM and they will only give assistance the first time. The rest of the time you are on your own. I had a manager at the Corporate office tell me that because it is not a recall yet they will not pay for it. He told me to put up with the noise.
  • Hi. I recently had a very scary experience driving a 2006 Impala. I was driving on a straight highway going about 70-75 mph when the car very suddenly started jerking and swerving from side to side. I tried to take control of the steering wheel, to no avail -- the car seemed to have a mind of its own. I was unable to regain control of the car and it ended up on the side of the road. Thankfully, my passenger and I walked away with only scrapes and bruises, but this could have been a fatal accident. I first thought a tire blew out but this apparently was not the case. Please help! Any thoughts as to what could have caused the problem? Are there any Impala drivers out there who have experienced a similar problem? Thanks so much.
  • pbaranellopbaranello Posts: 36
    I have a 2002 Impala and the sterring is tight. I also have a 2006 LT3 and I don't like the way the steering feels. I cannot say as yet but I think that the 2006 models have a problem.

    Stay tuned........
  • I have a 2006 LTZ. The car veered to the right and the service people assured me that this was intentional so the cars did not veer left into oncoming traffic. (Something from a manual did indicate this.) Guess it is okay to veer to the right into a ditch or another vehicle.

    Honestly, after much anger and frustration on my part they discovered a bad tire and replaced it--twice. The problem was still there, so they finally listened to the stupid female again and started working on alignment. After three tries it finally is drivable. (It would be fine for a few hundred miles and then be back to the old swerving routine.)

    It probably didn't hurt that the GM was nearby when I took the keys in and threw them on the salesman's desk and told him that he was trading me cars for the evening.
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    It probably didn't hurt that the GM was nearby when I took the keys in and threw them on the salesman's desk and told him that he was trading me cars for the evening.

    Good for you! I'm so tired of having to coach my sisters because they get treated so differently. I can fully relate to your tire issues although it sounds like you may have some problem with suspension or steering components. I hope that isn't the case. My '02 Monte Carlo had two tires that were replaced for being "out of round". I suspect all four were bad but the other two were "within limits" so I was stuck with them. I have little faith in Good Year and I'm pretty sure all '06 Impalas have Good Year tires. Other than the tires that came with my cars, I refuse to buy them. Good Year seems to be resting on their good name. The competition is hungrier and usually a much better tire at a lower price. :)
  • darmsteaddarmstead Posts: 3
    I have a 2003 Impala. Great car. Two issues.
    1) When turning at about 10 mile an hr or so left or right or when going around curves I feel a quick slip in the steering.

    2) It seems that the Impala is not a smooth ride. I feel the bumps in the rode. Anyone else having these's issues.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    Which engine/trim level do you have (3.4 base, 3.8 LS)? The 3.8 came with a somewhat more sport-tuned suspension (relative to the base model, anyway) might ride a little firmer and transmit road imperfections more than a base model.

    Also, how many miles do you have on your tires (and what brand/model are they)? If the tires are worn or a cheaper brand, they could account for both of your problems. My 2000 came with Goodyear Eagle GAs (I think), when they wore out I put on a set of sportier Bridgestones which handled much better, but they lowered my gas mileage. This last round I went with a more pedestrian Firestone tire, which do NOT promote spirited driving. The lose traction under modest acceleration from a standstill, and they tend to slide/give more than the sportier Bridgestones. In addition to trying to eke a little more gas mileage out of the car, the tires were also rated at as being very good for wet stopping...since most of my driving is in town commuting back and forth to work, I find it more critical for me to stop quickly in all conditions than to be able to accelerate. I'm not disappointed in the tires, because they're delivering what I bought them to do...but I do miss the handling of the Bridgestones.
  • darmsteaddarmstead Posts: 3
    I have a 3.4 base with HP259 size 16" tires. This was all that show's on tires. Tires are in very good shape. I have 35240 miles on car. 32152 when first bought.
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    The only other thing I can think of the intermediate steering shaft (ISS), which is an oft-mentioned problem with the 2000-2005 Impala. If you're feeling/hearing a "clunking" when turning at fairly low speeds, especially when applying the brakes, that might be the "slipping" you're feeling. There are many other posts here about the ISS problem, but the basic fix is for the dealer to lube the ISS - sometimes this takes care of the problem, and sometimes it returns eventually.
  • mrwaynemrwayne Posts: 20
    Also check message 1641.
  • Hi there. I would really appreciate any insight you may provide me as to what have gone wrong -- is it the steering column, alignment? What would cause a car to suddenly start going from right to left?
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    To know for sure, you'd want to investigate with all the conditions recreated. Uneven pavement, pavement texture, standing water, high wind, as well as mechanical issues could cause unexpected steering input. Also, once the initial problem/input occurs, it has the chance of creating a cycle of over-correction which sometimes gets attributed to the vehicle. In the heat of the moment, it's not easy to determine what problems are being caused by the vehicle or conditions and what may be caused by your reactive driving inputs.

    If the problem were mechanical, it would likely remain a constant or get worse. Since this condition didn't repeat itself, I doubt a mechanical problem. The only other cause that comes to mind would be a possible glitch in the ABS or traction control programming but that is unlikely in this day and age. Manufacturers test relentlessly to discover any problems prior to releasing a new model or technology to the public. Sometimes they miss things but it is rare. Hopefully, this helps. :)
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    Does this happen when applying the brakes? If so then your front brakes need servicing. If it doesn't happen when braking (the swerving etc) it could be a tie rod, bad wheel bearing, or strut problem. These have been issues with the 2000-05 Impalas. Get a certified mechanic to check it out. Test drive.
  • pbaranellopbaranello Posts: 36
    You have not said whether it has happened again? If it has not happened again then it was not the car but possibly some road condition you ran into. The problem I had was that my tires were not balanced properly and it was making me feel as if there was something wrong with the steering. Once they re-blanced the wheels & tires the vibration went away. A wheel balance problem won't cause the problem you had.

    The 2006 still does not handle as good as my 2002 Impala but the 2006 has a much softer ride, that I had to get use to.
  • It's the ISS causing the problem. The shaft needs to be greased every 10,000 but GM doesn't mention in their manuals.
  • Is this something that a car owner can take care of? Will the dealer sell us a lube kit? Lomax
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    I've wondered the same thing...if the dealer fix really does consist of drilling into the ISS and installing a grease fitting, I'd add a little grease every now and then if I knew where to find the fitting. Does anyone know if the fix involves a standard grease fitting, and if so, is it found under the dash, or the hood?
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    On the now read-only "2005 and earlier" board, someone had posted about spraying their ISS with something called "PB Blaster" and it curing the clunking and looseness. I'd posted that I tried spraying mine with a WD40-type spray I had, but it had no effect. On Friday I was in the auto parts store (which I do much more often now that I've acquired a 1980 El Camino!), and I happened to see this PB Blaster on the shelf. I know this sounds like a commercial, but I bought a can of the stuff, went home, and sprayed it on the ISS universal joint under the dash for about 5 seconds. About 10 minutes later I took the Impala out and drove it for a couple of miles, and it seems as if my problem is cured! I don't know how long it will last, but the clunking was gone, and the steering felt tight and accurate again (it'd begun to feel rather loose, and drifted a good bit - not quite as bad at the El Camino, but close!). Time will tell if this actually fixes the problem; I'll try to post here if/when I have problems again (or if the PB Blaster creates any other problems).
  • I own an 02 Impala 102k an taken very well care of it oil changes,ect,ect an all sudden one night comeing home from work i went to make a right turn an my front end froze up like it was locked whouldnt turn so i put all my muscle in it an forced it to turn an when it did i heard a pop nose since then i have no power steering replaced the lines an pump olny thing i mange to do was waste time an money everybody saying its the rack an piono what do yall think i am hopeing for some good feed back before i go spend 300$ on the part an another 200$ in labor
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,564

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • I've had the "ISS Clunk" for quiet some time, but I didn't know what it was until I found this forum. It was minor at first and I ignored it. But its gotten worse and worse the last few months. When I recently had my 2000 Impala in for brake work, I had them check it out. They couldn't find anything wrong, but I knew something was up! It felt like something was really loose in the steering.

    I found this forum and bought a can of PB Blaster in my local Pep Boys (you also can get this online at: I was skeptical, but this afternoon I pulled off the kick panel under the steering wheel and peeled down the rubber boot around the steering shaft. Its not easy to pull this down, but I managed to push it down with one hand and spray with the other. I managed to spray the stuff so that some of it did go down the hole in the center of the shaft. Some sprayed all over the place and ran down inside the boot, I hope that's OK (It would be a lot easier if the PB Blaster had one of those little red tubes that is usually supplied with a can of WD40).

    I took it for drive this afternoon, drove to a couple of stores, and lo and behold the ISS Clunk seems to be gone!! The steering still seems a bit loose and occasionally makes a click sound, but the clunk while turning at low speed and the "shifting" feeling while braking is gone!! So thanks to all who posted the info on this forum!
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    Looking to see if anyone else out there is having problems with the front suspension on their '06 or newer Impala SS. I have seen one other post regarding the front struts getting soft and wanted to see if there's a pattern. The symptoms I'm experiencing are a bit subtle but definitely noticeable. It's most apparent when driving at highway speeds over uneven pavement with small bumps or gentle changes in the road surface. Major bumps that cause the suspension to travel significantly are still handled about the same as always but the smaller amounts of suspension travel seem to have less dampening. In other words, during the smaller bumps, the suspension doesn't stop bouncing as quickly as a it should. With a properly functioning suspension, there should be one bounce and an immediate leveling off. Mine now bounces twice in that small travel range. In comparison, my sister's Impala basically absorbs the same bumps with no real bounce, just softening of the road irregularity. Hopefully I've explained it sufficiently. I hope to hear from anyone with similar issues. Thanks! :)
  • fox76fox76 Posts: 4
    I have a 2005 Impala with just under 36K miles.Last week I started hearing a faint pop when turning right, intermitently.I took it in & they said it was needing the steering gear to be replaced.I googled my car with steering gear & got to these and similar posts.I learned that GM cant seem to get it right.I read that the steering gear replacement does no good or only a temp fix.I mentioned this to the service rep.He said they know it is a common problem and metioned all the TSB's.I believe he said GM plans a permanent fix soon, may have misunderstood.I mentioned lubricating the ISS.He said they dont do that anymore.I got my impala back last night and the popping is worse.It is not louder it but it happens EVERY time I turn, right or left, between 15 & 40mph.I have read that tightening the suspension works.I called an independent mechanic who said GM cant seem to fix it & that his daughter's '01 still pops.He said that he has heard that you can use a injecting needle to inject silicon (i believe he said silicon) into the frame (?) and it expends to tighten things up. Has anyone had a positive outcome from having this popping noise? Or does it ALWAYS come back? THANKS!
  • nosirrahgnosirrahg Little Rock, ARPosts: 872
    When my 2000 Impala first developed the ISS problem several years ago, I took it to the dealer and they did the lube fix, which worked until very recently. Someone here posted that they'd lubed their ISS themselves with an aerosol lubricant called "PBBlaster" and it cured his problem. I tried it too, and it eliminated probably 95% of my ISS problem. It's been two months since I sprayed mine and the problem hasn't recurred. Basically you just pull down the rubber dust cover on the ISS underneath the dash and shoot it with this stuff, and the problem seems to go away. It may not be a permanent fix, but it beats nothing.
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