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2006 Chevrolet Impala



  • rysterryster Posts: 564
    "One thing I'd add, is that when new, the SS suspension was much tighter. Once it broke-in, it got loose like it is now. I remember specifically taking the car over speed bumps and being very impressed by how it handled them. Now, it's as sloppy as my old '02 Monte SS that I replaced. I have taken it in to two different dealerships and both say it's within specs. I'm assuming my only other option is to replace the front struts with some aftermarket struts that are better suited...although I haven't looked into it and don't know that it's worth the expense."

    I have noticed this same thing with my 06 LT 3.5 When new the suspension was amazing. Very compliant, almost silent, and absorbed bumps very well. Now that the car has 8300 miles on it, the suspension feels as though it has aged considerably (and not gracefully for that matter). The car exhibits more of a crashing when it goes over bumps and road irregularities. It sounds and acts very much like the 03 Impala LS my parents had when theirs hit about 25,000 miles.

    Overall it still rides OK, but is just more vocal about what it is doing.

    I still have my days where I think about cutting my losses and trading the Imp. :confuse: I have owned 10 cars and never any import brands...might be time to try an Avalon, Acura TL, or Maxima.
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    Thanks Rob, good to know. Do you, or any of the the SS owners out there, have any issues with your front suspension? It's not like it's so bad that it needs replaced, it just isn't as good as I feel it should be (or as I remember it when it was new).

    I'm no expert, by any stretch of the imagination, but I think my issue is with the shock absorber, not the spring. The car is allowed to bounce (however subtly) over just about anything. These little bumps should be absorbed by the suspension and they are by my sister's 3LT.
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    Thanks for the input Ryster. That may be the real issue...age/wear. Maybe it's just a bad component that doesn't wear well. With the SS being heavier, it only makes sense that it should wear out faster...although this is WAY too soon.

    If it weren't for the V-8, I may be inclined to move along into something else as well. I may now be more inclined to go with a used car next time. That way I won't BUY a different car than I later have to LIVE with.
  • I agree, the struts are the culprit. Although I have only owned mine for two weeks, I have already logged about 1500 miles on the car, and I think the front end suspension could be a little better tuned. I have to go over a few 20mph speed bumps and I dont dare go over them at 20mph! Now, I think the car can still handle it, but at 14,500 miles on it, I decided to go over them at about 5mph due to the softness of the front end. The bumps are indeed smoother to travel over than my wife's car, but her car doesnt have that gorgeous V8 either. With Chevrolet deciding to use a lot of the same parts on all their Impala and Monte Carlo trim levels, well, perhaps it is a good question to ask the dealership about those stiffer struts. If I get the oppportunity to do so soon, I will ask. That might solve the problem. -Rob
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,307
    Post 2485

    Glad to see that Hunter RoadForce balancing did help. Did they check alignment?

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • The family-owned garage here did, so I didnt request it at the dealership. The alignment was spot-on. I only drove a few miles on the interstate (at 60-65 or so), but it seemed to quiet the vibrations down. I'll let you know after I drive it this upcoming week! Thanks again for all your help! -Rob
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    It's worth a shot but I don't see my dealership helping me out...unless Chevy acknowledges the problem. From what I've seen here in the forum, there's not much concern over the issue.
    My issue may be different from yours, Rob. Mine seems to handle the big bumps well. It's the minor little road imperfections that bother me the most. My car is constantly bouncing and settling as I drive, especially at highway speeds.
    I have one of the larger, rounded speed "humps" that I drive over everyday at work. I can take them at speeds high enough (15 mph) to nearly top and bottom the suspension and they are handled pretty well, smoothly and quietly, except for the last bit of suspension travel.

    Hopefully that makes sense. It's tough to put into words.

    Have a good one,
  • Hi Ron, you might want to take a look at the struts for any fluid leakage. Once, I had new struts break their seal and leak oil right down the strut. Bad struts always sound like there are marbles in the cylinders, crunching against each other while going over all the road imperfections! -Rob
  • Ron, one more thing, perhaps a cracked/broken front spring is the issue. That might explain the suspension noise. -Rob
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    Seems like you have had this problem with the suspension for a long time with your 2006 Impala SS. Your post #1637, nine months ago (May 2006) you indicated the suspension/struts were starting to give too soft a ride then at 4,500 miles. Its obvious you have a concern but GM doesn't seem to be interested. Maybe take out a 2007 SS and compare the two. Take a chevy service advisor for the ride in both cars.
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    I've tried that but my local dealer hasn't had any SSs on the lot the times I've been there. I'll have to keep checking the online invnentory now the new model year is in full swing. Maybe I'll catch 'em with one on the lot.
    Here's one thing I haven't mentioned before...the local dealer here said they have a machine that measures the struts'...what exactly, they didn't say...but I was wondering if anyone out there has heard of such a machine. It sounded a little hokey to me but I didn't want to say anything without knowing. If the machine exists, it supposedly said my struts were within specs. If that's the case, the specs are the problem. ;)

    Thanks all,
  • charts2charts2 Posts: 618
    Late last year I read somewhere that the struts on the Impala SS are the same ones on the Pontiac GXP. You might want to check out that forum for comparisons.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564

    Got home yesterday from running some pre-Daytona 500 errands and I figured I would check to see if I have a "ghost", too. Mine does the same as yours. After 30 or so seconds of closing the door and sitting there, the speedo and tach needles jump just a little and make a skittering noise.

    Seems they all do it (well, yours and mine anyway :) )
  • I have a 3.5 that I got last March. It now has 10,230 miles on it. When I first got it and until last fall it was getting about 18-22 mpg in town. Mileage has improved to 22-26. I don't have bumper to bumper traffic here -usually 30-40 mph in town. Mileage on the road has been as high as 32. No warranty issues except for the screeching windows. I finally got tired of taking it to the dealer and sprayed the rubber with Armorall. That solved the problem. Resale value of these Impalas is terrible. I would be lucky to get $13,000 for mine on a trade in. I bought a 2LT specifically because I didn't want the 3.9 litre engine. The 3.5 is fast enough for passing and gets great gas mileage.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564
    One of the main reasons my parents traded their '03 Impala LS at 40,000 miles was the drastic loosening up of the suspension. They genuinely liked the car, but the suspension noise, ride, and feel changed just enough that they wanted something smoother and quieter. They now have a 2007 Mercury Montego and are absolutely thrilled :)

    My parents have been in my '06 Impala and have commented that it seems to ride much better than their '03 did. While I agree with them on that, I am not thrilled at how quickly the '06 is loosening up on me.

    I agree with you on the buying used idea. 9 out of my past 10 vehicles have been new. Just like you said, the car you buy most often times does not necessarily end up being the car you have to live with. I often think about trying a certified pre-owned car for my next car. That way I still have a warranty, and if I end up with a nightmare I won't have quite as much depreciation to contend with if I need to trade out of it.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564

    I also have an 06 LT 3.5 I agree that the engine is more than adequate for everyday use. You seem to be getting gas mileage closer to what is indicated on the window sticker. My particular car is currently averaging 21mpg in mixed driving. The best mileage I have seen is 24mpg (and that was with almost 1/2 that particular tank of gas at 55-60mph highway cruising). I am at 8300 miles, perhaps it will gradually improve as it approaches 10,000 miles.

    I also have a window issue with mine, but they do not screech when going up and down. I have an ongoing issue with my driver's door window chattering/clattering in the frame when all the way up. If I lower the window 1/8" or so, the noise subsides considerably. I have treated the rubber weatherstripping and gasket around the window frame with silicone lubricant and white lithium grease, but it only served to make the noise worse. Not sure I want the dealer even attempting to resolve it...not sure what they would break in the process.

    You are right about resale. It's not the best, but it could be worse :)
  • cnwcnw Posts: 105
    QuietPro--I checked my car several times this weekend attempting to duplicate the symptoms you described. On only one occasion did I note anything similar; as I opened the door--radio and all accessories "off"--the odometer reading illuminated and the tach and speedo jumped, all in conjunction with the "click" sound of the under-dash relay. I wasn't able to duplicate it again. Electronics!! Sorry I couldn't assist further.
  • cnwcnw Posts: 105
    After my previous post this evening, I read Ryster's post and realized I hadn't checked under proper conditions to duplicate what you observed. I went out to the car, got in and closed the door. At approximately 30 seconds, I heard the "bug-crawling" noises, and both the tach and speedometer pegged in the negative direction, then returned to normal. Clark
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    Just like you said, the car you buy most often times does not necessarily end up being the car you have to live with. I often think about trying a certified pre-owned car for my next car. That way I still have a warranty, and if I end up with a nightmare I won't have quite as much depreciation to contend with if I need to trade out of it.

    My thoughts exactly. :) I had actually planned on going that route this time around but caught the new car bug while helping my sister shop for her car.

    As for the two of you who went ghost-busting in your Impalas, thanks for giving it a try. I figured it was normal but it always helps to have confirmation.

    Later all...
  • My line snapped----the dealer thinks I hit something, but I am pretty sure that is not the case. Did you notice a change in the overall control of the steering with the leak? I did not notice anything until I made a turn into a parking space. At that point I heard a noise that I knew was not good. The other thing about their theory is that there was not any fluid in the area that they are saying the impact would have caused the problem. They think that I hit and immediately lost the fluid. If there was a gradual leak would I have noticed the problem before it "drained" the lines and destroyed the motor?
  • You might want to have the dealer check your car because 24 mpg is terrible for highway driving. I always get 28 or more on the highway at 65-70 even when the car was new. You may have something clogged up or misadjusted. I do better than that in my Deville -always get 25-30 on the road depending on a headwind. With a tailwind at 60 I've gotten 32 in the Cadillac. Out here in NM winds definately make a difference in gas mileage. The window problem sounds like a misadjusted window that isn't properly seated in the track. The dealer should take the door panel off and check the window track. I'm sure if it is like the older cars, the window can be adjusted.
  • I just got a call from my dealer and the car will not be fixed for a few days. No parts are available because this is apparently very common in the colder areas. Since we were sub zero several days and had all of the snow that was building up this was the perfect condition for the problem.

    Thanks to all of you my salesmen --who is great to help with my problems-- told the service area that I knew more about this car than most of them.

    It seems that after the initial thought that I hit something, someone that did know the situation stepped in to let them know that they were not right and that my description fit the problem. It is a SLOW leak. My problem developed over time and surfaced suddenly when the motor was fried from the lack of fluid.

    So guys and gals, thanks again for helping to educate me on the problems that exist with this car. Nothing thrills me more than to think I knew what was going on more than the mechanic working on the car.

    I was SURE that I didn't hit something-- you helped to confirm that for me-- and they now agree. THANKS!!!!
  • kw5kwkw5kw Posts: 19
    Ryster said: I often think about trying a certified pre-owned car for my next car. That way I still have a warranty, and if I end up with a nightmare I won't have quite as much depreciation to contend with if I need to trade out of it.

    GM has just announced this:

    The new fully transferable five-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty with no deductible – available on all 2002-2006 GM Certified Used Vehicles – is effective from the vehicle's original in-service date. The warranty launches March 5, with marketing/advertising to support the new program taking place by the end of the month.
  • Hi Imidazol, well, after three days (300 miles) of driving, the vibrations at 60mph and above continue! I called the dealer who roadforced the tires and on Friday at noon, I will take one of the techs out for a spin. There just so happens to be a stretch of highway right down the road from them, so.........I had the same thing happen to my wife's 99 mailbu and after several balancings, alignments, tires and such, the car acted like all the wheels were out of balance at 60 and above! I cannot believe this car is doing the same thing!! Unbelievable! Ill keep you posted. Thanks again for your input and help. -Rob
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,307
    Your analysis may be by having the dealer take a set of wheels off a car that does not have the symptoms and put those on your car--at least temporarily.

    What brand of tire do you have? Do any of the Chevs have Michelins?

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • I wish my car had Michelins! I have always sworn by them! My car has the Goodyear Eagle RS-A. I know that the car sat at the dealer from mid-november to early February. It became very cold here during the last 30 days or so that it sat out in their lot. Perhaps some flat-spotting ocurred. If so, I hope they do the right thing and replace one or more of the tires. The right front was "over the limit" and after roadforce, was just under. Could be the one bad tire, but it does leave a bad taste in my mouth about Goodyear! I also hope this does the trick, and it isnt something to do with bent cv shafts, bad wheel hubs, etc. No noise from those areas (like a bad wheel hub would do), but.........-Rob
  • I'll never purchase a new GM car again - Chevy, Cadillac, etc. It is absolutely stupid to experience a $10,000 depreciation on an Impala in less than a year. The "Blue Book" wholesale is ridiculous. Anybody in the car business knows that a dealer won't give you a penny more for your used car than he can pay for one at auction. If you take care of it, polish it, change the oil every 3,000 miles all you are doing is allowing him to wash it and put it on his lot thereby saving him detailing costs. He certainly won't pass the savings on to you and he could care less about your maintenance. Everybody loves their Impalas on this forum. I hope everybody plans on keeping them at least four or five years. If anybody plans to trade in a year or two then he would be far better off with a Toyota or some brand of car that the general public figures has some residual value. Obviously an Impala is not one of them.
  • pluto5pluto5 Posts: 618
    If you plan on changing cars every year or two you would probably be better off leasing (renting). I have had several GM cars that have served well for 10-12 years apiece and never got a bill for depreciation! :blush:
  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    I've also heard that GM has taken notice of falling resale values and is taking steps to improve the situation. Impala production was limited starting in 06 (I believe) and less cars were sold to the rental fleets. But, it will take a while for the effects to be felt and won't help us '06 owners. As for me, I'm ok with my car as long as it performs well and so far, so good.
  • That's true. A lease is better. I was planning on trading in the Impala and my '03 Cadillac for an '06 DTS but I'll keep the Impala indefinately now and will sell the '03 locally next winter and get a Certified '06 or '07 DTS at that time. I kept GM cars normally 80-100,000 miles back when I commuted (they were normally 4-5 years old) and rarely had any serious problems. After 100,000 miles I don't consider the cars really dependable and don't want to take them on trips. At that mileage it doesn't really matter what you are selling -Toyota Avalon or a Buick. They are all worth about the same and you do a lot better selling privately.
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