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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,186 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.

2009 Chevrolet Malibu steering problems

steering problem

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2009 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 12 of 13)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #26

Nov 102013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 82,100 miles


On Sunday, November 3, 2013, the warning light came on warning me that we had no power steering for the first time. On Monday, November 4, 2013, we again received the message that we had no power steering. And we did not have power steering. You had to turn the ignition off and restart numerous times for the warning light not to come on. On Tuesday, November 5, 2013, my intent was to make an appointment to have the Malibu checked out, when my wife called on her way to work and said that she had trouble starting the Malibu without the power steering warning, that something was wrong with the steering as she was driving, and we should exchange vehicles at a local repair shop. They looked at the error code (dtc C0545), printed me a copy of the technical bulletin (09-02-36-001), and recommended that I take the Malibu to a dealer. It took five starts before the Malibu would start on their parking lot before the power steering warning went off. As I drove to the dealer the car was drivable, but there was definitely something wrong with the steering. When I arrived at the dealer, I placed the transmission in park and set the emergency brake; when I took my hands off the steering wheel to turn off the ignition, the steering wheel was going left and right on its own " I can"T emphasize this enough. I have never witnessed (or have even heard of) a car?S steering wheel performing in this manner before. In addressing the situation with the technician writing up my problem, we discussed payment and warranty and he said he would call GM and call me back. He called me back later and said that GM would pay half the repair and that my cost eventually worked out to $497.66.

- Perry Hall, MD, USA

problem #25

Oct 242013


  • 66,024 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, the steering wheel became difficult to maneuver as the power steering warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the steering column needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure and current mileage was 66,024.

- Ledyard, CT, USA

problem #24

Jul 012013


  • 67,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the power steering wheel warning light illuminated intermittently. The contact had not experienced a power steering assist failure. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 67,000 and the current mileage was 69,886.

- Bloomington, MN, USA

problem #23

Jul 212013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 73,000 miles


I have a 2009 Malibu, a little over 73000 miles. 7/21/2013 while in park the steering wheel started shaking and pulsing. I turned the car off and restarted it and it stopped. I got on the interstate and the steering wheel started shaking and pulsing and shifting. I have to keep 2 hands on the wheel as not to be shifted from lanes. I take the car Wednesday to a GM dealership. They told me it wasn't calibrated after an alignment, and they calibrated it done and alignment and rotated the tires. I pay $220 for this service and leave. I get home with no problems. Very next morning Thursday, I start my car and it starts the same thing all over again. It shakes and pulses all the way to the dealership while shifting me in lanes. After waiting for around an hour and a half, I am told the electrical power steering motor is out and it is nearly $700. This is $920 for a motor in a 4 year old vehicle with 73000 miles. This vehicle is not safe considering if you do not have 2 hands on the vehicle and paying very close attention you may end up in up in the lane beside you. I have researched this online and found 100S of complaints concerning this same problem. I am amazed this has not been recalled. I am very disappointed with GM.

- Rockwood, TN, USA

problem #22

Jul 102013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • miles
My car was under bumper to bumper warranty when the steering gear was replaced. Now the same part is going bad again for the second time. Today's date 7-10-2013.

- Silverton, OR, USA

problem #21

Dec 202012


  • 66,421 miles
Erratic steering while trying to park. Chimes were head, message came across speedo, major clunk also started at same time. Sounds like right front. Another electric power steering failure from a car barely broken in, from GM. When will they take responsibility for substandard parts they import for american cars?

- Oakwood Village, OH, USA

problem #20

Nov 082012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 86,000 miles


The power steering goes inop. At times. The power steering light comes on and vehicle is very difficult to steer. When you turn the vehicle off and then back on it resets the system and everything goes back to normal. Took it to dealership to be diagnosed and said steering column needs to be replaced and had the repair done.

- Mechanicsburg, PA, USA

problem #19

Apr 162012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • miles
Power steering - when turning the steering wheel, you feel non-smooth condition, unusual humming or moaning noise. Some power steering fluid had to be replaced but no noticeable leak is evident. Had private auto mechanic look into problem and he advised to let dealer take care of it because they have the computerized equipment to make appropriate repairs. Auto mechanic stated that he has experienced similar complaints about the Chevy Malibu. Chevy dealer checked problem and advised us to wait for problem no "worsen" because any diagnostic work will cost us "a lot of money" wondering if NHTSA has similar complaints on file because I'm concerned about any safety issue?

- Jericho, NY, USA

problem #18

Oct 182011


  • 58,000 miles
Wheels wobbling when I bought the certified vehicle, took it back to dealer. They replaced front tires and aligned vehicle. Also steering wheel does not lock into place when put in park and key removed from ignition. Constant steering correction at any speed. Wheel dances back and forth and feels bouncy. Dealer stated that there is no problem with the steering wheel. Returned to dealer on Feb. 23 2012. They replaced front tires again. Test drove car and stated the car was fixed. Car still wonders, wheels still wobble..still play in steering wheel. Spoke with GM rep. Explained issue. GM rep. Also spoke with dealer mechanic. Dealer mechanic advised GM rep. That car wheels and steering was fixed. Incorrect. Dealer did not address steering wheel. Only replaced tires. Issue still exists. Easy to lose control. Feels like it has bad wheel bearings or busted hub. But dealer mechanics says its okay.

- Poca, WV, USA

problem #17

Mar 042011

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 45,880 miles
Vehicles tire right side rods failed at 45880 were replaced under warranty 3/4/11. Complained to dealer about noise from right side of car at 50K dealer claimed there was no noise however due to weather conditions at the time (raining) they would need to see vehicle on a dry day. Vehicle in shop now with 64000 almost 1yr later right side tire rods need replacing again. This is my second Chevy Malibu and I am not happy. Doubt I will purchase Chevy again!!!

- Greenbelt, MD, USA

problem #16

Nov 122011

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 47,000 miles


Backing out of a parking spot power steering gave out. Service ESC light came on. Power steering message lit. Pulled into parking spot shut car off. Started car seconds later - no warning lights on and power steering was back but did not feel right. Turned wheel while parked and ESC and power steering warning lights illuminated. Tried again, same thing. Had to drive 2 miles to home with no power steering. Outside temperature was 34 degrees at the time.

- Blackwood, NJ, USA

problem #15

Sep 162011


  • 95,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving approximately 35 mph, the contact was unable to steer the vehicle because the electronic power steering assist failed. The service electronic power steering light illuminated on the instrument panel and the vehicle was towed to the dealer where the technician advised that the steering column had to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 95,000.

- Waterofrd, MI, USA

problem #14

Nov 202009


  • 62,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving approximately 5 mph, the steering wheel began to jerk abnormally. After time, the power steering light illuminated on the instrument panel. The failure began to recur intermittently and with time, became a constant occurrence. In addition, the contact noticed a burning odor when first starting the vehicle. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostics or repairs. The approximate failure mileage was 62,000.

- Eden, NC, USA

problem #13

Mar 012011


  • 62,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated the power steering failed intermittently while driving at any speed over 30 mph. The power steering warning light illuminated while the failure occurred. The vehicle was taken to the dealer to be diagnosed the failure was located at the steering column and the power steering motor. The dealer replaced the steering column and the power steering motor yet the failure was not corrected. The steering continued to fail while driving at any speed. The failure mileage was 62,000 and the current mileage was 65,000.

- Carolina Shores, NC, USA

problem #12

May 172011


  • 33,000 miles
The driver owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. The driver was traveling approximately 15 mph when he lost control of the vehicle and the driver could no longer control the steering wheel. The vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer where the contact was informed that the front driver's side tie rod detached from the vehicle. The vehicle was in the process of being repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileages were 33,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Novi, MI, USA

problem #11

Feb 162011


  • 50,000 miles
Steering in 2009 Chevrolet Malibu is erratic at best at times even sitting perfectly still the steering wheel will move erratically back and forth as if the car was trying to steer itself. This seems inherently dangerous as it has almost caused my wife to change lanes abruptly.

- Fenton, MO, USA

problem #10

Jan 132011


  • 108,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving approximately 10 mph the steering wheel became difficult for her to maneuver. There were no warning lights that illuminated on the instrumental panel. The vehicle was inspected by a dealer who informed the contact that she needed to replace the steering torque input sensor. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 108,000.

- Baton Rouge, LA, USA

problem #9

Nov 302010

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
I have an 2009 Chevy Malibu and the problem is that the steering wheel shakes and it will shake at a stop light and while im driving. When it shakes while im driving it feels like its beginning to lock up. I took it to the dealer and they say its from a powersteering problem and its because it is electrical powersteering.

- Stafford , TX, USA

problem #8

Jul 292010


  • 24,571 miles
2009 Chevrolet Malibu 2lt 2.4L ecotec w/electric steering assist. When my wife left work last night, turning right out of parking lot, steering locked, would not unlock until vehicle was turned off and restarted. May not have been completely locked, but was way beyond effort normally required to steer without power steering. Car was towed to dealer immediately, they seemed to know all about the problem, even knew which direction she turned. We have not had any previous problems or indication of a problem.

- Richmond, MI, USA

problem #7

Jul 152010


  • 45,055 miles
The "power steering" message is on at the panel control. Every time when I turn to the left or right with my car, the wheel was hard and is difficult to drive on highways. My car is a Chevrolet Malibu 2009, 4 cylinders. The dealer repair the fault and I pay $ $509.

- Pharr, TX, USA

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