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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
25 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
66,379 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.

2004 Chevrolet Malibu steering problems

steering problem

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2004 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 7 of 33)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #521

Mar 312014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • miles


I was driving the car through an intersection approaching the ramp onto the interstate. I lost steering control for about 2 seconds, just missing the guard-rail and having an accident. The next morning, there was a recall for the 2004 Malibu. I contacted the dealership for a loaner car, only to be told the car VIN number is not an approved model for the recall. I need to know why it is not if it is having the same issues. I have reported to this site at least twice about issues with this car.

- Port Wentworth, GA, USA

problem #520

Mar 312014


  • 50,000 miles
A chiming noise came on, then a light with a wrench on it. My steering did not feel right so I pulled over. That night I heard about my recall. I'm afraid to drive my car. Its been parked since then.GM will not pay for a rental car, so I had to pay for my own last night at $200 a week.

- Wallingford, PA, USA

problem #519

Mar 012010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 67,987 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the drivers side seat frame was fractured. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technician verified the failure and stated that the seat frame needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was repaired. The failure mileage was 67,987 and the current mileage was 95,000. Updated 09/26/2014 updated 02/27/2015

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #518

Feb 182010


  • 67,568 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated while driving 30 mph the vehicle stalled without any warning. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technician diagnosed that the steering column assembly needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was repaired. The failure mileage was 67,568. The current mileage was 95,000.

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #517

Feb 282014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
Daughter was turning the corner and the steering wheel stop turning and she ran into a snow bank. Car is inoperable now. The car had been difficult to turn since I purchased it. I took it to a mechanic who couldn't find anything wrong with it. I also took it back to the dealership where I purchase and they would not honor the warranty, and this was only a couple of weeks after I purchased it.

- Eastpointe, MI, USA

problem #516

Feb 112014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 134,000 miles
I was backing out of my driveway and the power steering light came on and I lost power steering. I shut the car off and it reset and the power steering came back on. This has happened numerous times since where the power steering goes out by it self with no warning. Seems like it happens more at slower speeds, but what happens when I do not expect it and I need the power steering. My young daughter drives it sometimes also.

- Mt. Pleasant, MI, USA

problem #515

Mar 012014


  • 55,000 miles


Steering quits working while driving the car.

- Puyallup, WA, USA

problem #514

Sep 272011

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 15,520 miles
The service steering warning light/chime illuminated while driving the car. No loss of steering. Drove the car to the local Chevrolet dealer the next day without incident. They replaced the steering column at a cost of $777.22. The owner (my mother) was responsible for the bill. I'm reporting it now on her behalf as it appears General Motors might finally recall the 2004 models given their renewed Focus on safety in light of the current cobalt/G5/ion fiasco. ** was the 2004 Malibu exempt from the 2005 and up recall when it uses the same electric steering unit?*** thank you.

- Weymouth, MA, USA

problem #513

Feb 042014

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that after starting the engine, the power steering assist malfunctioned making the steering wheel very difficult to turn. The contact indicated that the failure was recurring. The vehicle was diagnosed by an independent mechanic, who determined that the power steering module was faulty. The power steering module was replaced but the vehicle continued to exhibit the failure. The manufacturer was notified but no solution was offered. The failure mileage was 100,000. Updated 04-23-14

- Gilmer, TX, USA

problem #512

Jul 262012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
The power steering will randomly go out. Most often it happens at low speeds, ex. Backing out of a parking space, starting from a stop sign etc. It has also happened at 20 miles per hour around a curve in the road which very nearly ended in a crash. Turning the car off and back on again has resolved the issue temporarily but I am very concerned that sooner or later this will end in a crash.

- Cottage Grove, MN, USA

problem #511

Mar 112014


  • 100 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated while driving approximately 50 mph, the vehicle exhibited a loud banging noise and stalled as the mil warning light illuminated. The contact was able to restart the vehicle after several attempts with limited power steering assist. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, who diagnosed that the steering column needed to be replaced. The vehicle scheduled for repairs. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 100. The VIN was unavailable.

- Laurel, MD, USA

problem #510

Apr 292013


  • 100,000 miles
I was living in Pennsylvania at the time and as I was coming home from work I was traveling at approximately 25 to 30 mph while coming around a curve the steering went out there was no way I could steer the car and I hit 2 cars and bounced off of them into a high curb my ribs were broken and I have been having severe pain in my hip. Right before the accident there was an alert tone I thought I was low on gas when I looked at my radio (this is where it tells you things) it said no power steering when I looked at my dash panel there was a wrench in a car I was trying to correct my direction but there was no way I could steer the car at all when the crash happened I was hospitalized I didn't know what to do I have tried to contact several attorneys but after all this happened I had to sell my home and move because I was unable to work. With the loss of the car I was unable to go to the hospital for follow ups as my doctor wanted. My nephew told me to write to you my vehicle was a total loss.

- Cookeville , TN, USA

problem #509

Mar 042014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering wheel failed without warning. The check engine warning light did not illuminate until after the failure occurred. The steering wheel returned to normal function when the engine was turned off and restarted. The contact stated that the dealer replaced the power steering system but the failure was not corrected. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 5,000 and the current mileage was 133,000. Updated 7/14/14 updated 07/18/2014

- Chestnut Ridge , NY, USA

problem #508

Mar 022014


  • 112,000 miles
While driving, the check engine light randomly came on, and then about 30 seconds later I lost power steering. Power steering came back on its own about 40 minutes later, after letting the car sit.

- Winter Springs, FL, USA

problem #507

Mar 012014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 72,000 miles
Bought car on 2-6-14. Within I months time, sensors registered 4 times power steering problems. GM has recalled this model from 2005 and up. But not the 2004 models with the same problems. The kelly blue book still holds the car at $5300. Just wondering if someone can help me out of this jam. Bought the car for my 23 year old daughter and afraid that she might get hurt or killed.

- Erie , PA, USA

problem #506

Aug 282013


  • 57,756 miles
Steering failed as I was making a left hand turn. The steering warning system has been giving false indication that something is wrong with the car until it did fail. Also please check out the following

- Port Aransas, TX, USA

problem #505

Feb 242014


  • 146,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while traveling various speeds, the steering suddenly seized. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was found that the electronic power steering had failed. The vehicle not repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 146,000.

- Washington, PA, USA

problem #504

Feb 172014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 119,000 miles
Randomly while driving down the road my power steering has gone out multiple times. I listed the most recent date. Now they say it will cost around 1000 to fix. If multiple people have complained about this shouldn't their be a recall? if the roads were icy I could've crashed and killed someone.

- Waukesha, WI, USA

problem #503

Feb 102014


  • 175,000 miles
As I was driving, the power in the steering began to lock, causing me temporarily loss of control of the steering. Luckily I was only going about 10-15 mph at the time, but I could hear clicking sounds under the steering wheel and a few lights flashed on the dashboard. I was not able to see which lights because by the time I applied the brakes and tried to avoid hitting the curb, the lights flashed off and I was able to continue driving.

- Port Wentworth, GA, USA

problem #502

Feb 072014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 149,000 miles
My 16 year old daughter was stopped at a four way intersection. As she proceeded to turn, she lost her ability to steer the car. She was able to avoid hitting another car and get her car to the side of the road. She noticed there was a yellow dash board light that came on when she lost the steering but no prior warning of any issues or warning lights prior to loosing the steering on the vehicle. Once she got to the side of the road, her four way emergency flashers would not work. My husband went to pick her up. He restarted the car and the steering worked fine for him. There was no warning lights indicating any problem on the dash board. We brought the car to our mechanic he could not get the problem to resurface. He did note that the directional turn signals seemed to be "messed up" and he changed the light bulbs. When she lost her steering a second time we had the vehicle towed to a different mechanic who told us this was a chronic defect issue with this make/brand of vehicle and that it needed a new electronic component in the steering column which would cost us $900. I researched this information on the internet and found that there are thousands of complaints for this very issue. It occurs at different amounts of mileage. It occurs on the vehicles when they were purchased brand new and purchased used as in our case. This is not your normal wear and tear type of vehicle issue. This is a significant safety issue which is an engineering/design flaw in the vehicle. I have called the GM customer service line. Our case # is 71-127-262-2441. We now have to bring the car to our local Chevy dealer and they have told us that it could cost way more just to diagnose the problem than to repair it. Unbelievable...please help look into this safety issue as my daughter could of been killed herself and or could have caused injury to someone else without any forewarning.

- Fairfield, ME, USA

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