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4.8

definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
21,846 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

1998 Chevrolet Malibu engine problems

engine problem

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1998 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #26

Feb 252003

Malibu

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Intake gasket failed in my 1998 Chevy Malibu, know this a huge problem with the plastic intake gaskets, 500 dollars to replace, should have a recall on this.

- Big Rapids, MI, USA

problem #25

Jan 092003

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles
Vehicle leaking coolant fluids from lower intake manifold. GM is well aware of this problem as I was told by a service advisor at my local dealership.

- Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #24

Jan 202003

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,000 miles
Our 1998 Chevrolet Malibu with a 3.1 liter V-6 engine has started losing engine oil and antifreeze. We have come to find out that this is a common problem in General Motors vehicles with this engine. The engine has been in use since at least 1996. Others have told me that mechanics are seeing this problem in cars on a daily basis. The fluids are lost though the intake manifold and do not leave a telltale stain or residue under a parked car. A repair at a Chevrolet dealer was quoted to us at $900. We were told there was no warranty coverage or recall. Is this problem being researched" is there a recall in the works"

- Granger, IN, USA

problem #23

Jan 152003

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,500 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Defective intake manifold gasket / coolant reaction. Engine shut down when driving on busy two lane road leaving me stranded in a traffic lane. I had to walk a half a mile and back in heavy traffic to use a telephone to summon help. Diagnosis by qualified mechanics found coolant water had infiltrated the engine, two valves were bent when the pistons hit them. Severe internal engine damage. This is reported to be a regular problem with the 3.1L GM engine and there has been no recall.

- Longwood, FL, USA

problem #22

Feb 022002

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,311 miles
My 1998 Chevy Malibu developed a intake manifould coolent leak at 33, xxx miles. It cost me & my extended warrantee company over $400 to repair. I have found out that GM is aware of this defect but continues to sell vehicles anyway. This is fraud!

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #21

Apr 032002

Malibu

  • miles
While driving vehicle, it felt sluggish and fail to maintain speed. Took vehicle to dealership & was informed by mechanic one of the mounts had cracked & the other was broke. The mounts supported the engine. Had vehicle repaired.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #20

Jan 102002

Malibu

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

We have two Malibu and both have had problems with leaking coolant from the engine. Service replaced gasket, which took overnight. I have read on Malibu websites on the net that this is another common problem.

- Franklin, IN, USA

problem #19

Nov 012000

Malibu

  • miles
Since I have owned this car I have had to change the brakes 10 times. I have had to replace the rotors twice. I have had to replace the calipers on both sides in the front and the wheel bearing on the passengers side once I have had repeated problems with the brakes since I purchased this car. In August of 2001 I had to replace the head gaskets as anti-freeze was leaking into my oil. My anti-lock brake light will come on out of the blue while traveling at speeds of 50 mph I am becoming very concerned about this matter. I have spoke to about 35 Malibu owners and they are all having the same problems. One owner had only 10K miles one her car at the time her brakes failed.

- St. Johnsbury, VT, USA

problem #18

Dec 282001

(reported on)

Malibu

  • miles
After increasing noise noted over a period of several months, I took my vehicle in to be serviced and was told that I had a cracked engine mount. The service person informed me that this was a very rare occurrence on a vehicle that was as new as 1998 without severe impact to the vehicle, which mine has never received and they were surprised that this had happened.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #17

Sep 012001

Malibu

  • miles
Four different mechanics gave estimates on intake gasket replacement. All stated that this was a very common problem with the 3.1 litre GM engines and they were surprised that GM has not issued a recall on these engines. One mechanic suspects it may be the dextron anti-freeze that GMC requires in there vehicles that is eating away at the gaskets and causing the coolant leakage. He had a Chevrolet lumina in the garage with the same problem when I got the estimate. GM would not cover any of the repair cost unless we paid a GM dealer to evaluate the problem which other garages provided free of charge. I have a Ford and have received excellant customer service from Ford and their dealerships. I will not buy another GM product.

- Machesney Park, IL, USA

problem #16

May 131998

Malibu

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The coolant was leaking into my engine. I was told the engine block was cracked, after being without my car for 4 days, they told me it was just a gasket leaking. They then "as good citizens" repaired my car under warrenty and charged me $73.95 for an oil change and fuel filter because these things had to be done while they were investigating the leak. I had just recently had my oil changed. Within the first few months of having my car I noticed serveral problems that I reported to the dealer and was waved off several times. I even rode with a service manager who explained that the ticking in the engine, the whinning my window made when rolling it up or down, the squeeking in the front and back of car were all normal because my car was settling like a house does. These noises and squeeks are normal!!! shortly there after, my wheel bearings were replaced, my window failed to roll up while on my way to work when it began pouring rain. The ticking noise was explained three years later, since the coolant was leaking into my engine. I have replaced break pads, and my rotars and am on my way to replacing both again at 36,000 miles. The ticking noise in my car is still present and now the air conditioner goes out intermittently while driving. I replaced the lamps in my break lights twice before another Malibu owner told me it was a problem in the circuit board. I am not happy with this vehicle and can't wait until I can afford to get rid of it. I will never buy another Chevy unless the choose to rectify this situation. After reading the other compliants I now see I am not the only person to ever report the leaking of the coolant and am frustrated since I was told this was never seen before!!!

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #15

May 252001

Malibu

  • miles
Took car in for routine 48,000 mile service and estimate is $1500 for coolant leakage into engine, serpentine belt, suspension arm (front) and PCV valve

- Silver Spring, MD, USA

problem #14

Mar 232001

Malibu

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Antifreeze began leaking from intake manifold onto engine block, causing intake manifold gaskets to be replaced.

- Falls Church, VA, USA

problem #13

Feb 152001

Malibu

  • miles
Engine gasket failure in a 3 year old, 52000 mile car---spoke with several mechanics--apparently is a common problem with this engine. Why no recall?

- Yardley, PA, USA

problem #12

Mar 292001

Malibu

  • miles
Found coolant leaking from car checked out and the head gasket was leaking coolant. Dealer to pay for repair.

- Pearl City, IL, USA

problem #11

Nov 162000

Malibu

  • miles
Brakes failed to work properly when they were applied. Tires would go flat every 3 days. Had them checked for holes or cuts, nothing was found. Engine had stalled out while driving due to blown head gaskets.

- Ferguson, MO, USA

problem #10

Feb 132001

(reported on)

Malibu

  • miles
Vehicle has stalled numerous of times especially when I am at a complete stop and engine light will go on. Slow crank and battery has been replaced twice. The headlights and interior lights dim whenever you slow down to come to a complete stop. The car is currently in the shop due to the stalling issue, mechanic states it is a problem in the computer system and will and to be replaced at my expense. Motor mounts are also corroded which is highly unusually due to car only being 3 years. I was unable to give the VIN # due to not having access to vehicle at the moment. The vehicle is currently in the shop undergoing repairs.

- Fort Stockton, TX, USA

problem #9

Jul 202000

Malibu

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Vehicle experienced several transmission related problems, consumer stated while pushing accelerator from a complete stop, engine would rev up but vehicle would not move, after a couple of seconds, the transmission would engage, this would also happen while driving, transmission experienced slipping, dealer rebuilt transmission, also, left front axle boot was torn, dealer replaced the left inner tripod joint boot. Gas cap tether broke, dealer replaced gas cap. Vehicle would vibrate while braking, dealer replaced warped rotors and front brakes, the right front caliper was later replaced due to a torn piston boot. Oil was leaking from the front crankshaft seal, dealer replaced seal. Steering column tilt housing bowl assembly machined improperly from factory causing tilt wobble, also caused a popping noise. Consumer heard a clunk noise from rear when going over bumps, dealer replaced both lower control arms.

- Brooklyn Park, MN, USA

problem #8

Nov 272000

Malibu

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Motor mounts/ bolts sheared off right front, causing engine to tilt and to accelerate. Dealer notified, and made repairs at consumer's cost. After contacting GM, they decided to pat for replacement parts, consumer paid for the labor charges and rental car charges.

- Lima, OH, USA

problem #7

Jun 011999

Malibu

  • miles
While driving vehicle constantly stalled. Dealership replaced computer, but stalling continued.

- Ocla, FL, USA

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