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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
68,036 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 Traverse steering problems

steering problem

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2009 Chevrolet Traverse Owner Comments (Page 2 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #181

Feb 262015


  • 42,697 miles


While driving at low speed steering becomes difficult. It squealed often when turning corners and was very hard to turn. Took it to the dealer for repair and GM covered the water pump but needed a new steering rack which is unusual at 40K miles. Had to pay about $1400 out of pocket to cover the repair so I could safely drive the vehicle.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #180

Aug 012015


  • miles
Good morning, I have been having problems with my steering when it comes to making turns, one time I nearly hit the curb trying to pull into my driveway. The power steering fluid was recently filled but the problem still remains. I've researched this issue and noticed this problem has occurred with other consumers. I know there was a safety bag and seat belt recall a few months back which was taken care of and now I would like to know how long will it take to issue the power steering recall. GM has had a lot of problems, and it's time for them to step up correct their errors. It's a reliable car, and I love it, but with safety issues like this something has to change.

- Lowell, MA, USA

problem #179

Aug 012015

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Traverse. While reversing, the steering wheel seized and required excessive force. The failure recurred on several occasions. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 120,000. Updated 11/18/15 the consumer stated the dealer found that both of the front struts needed to be replaced and have the vehicle alignment done. The Traverse could not be driven after the replacement of the failed power steering pump. Updated 2/3/2016

- Ceres, CA, USA

problem #178

Aug 012015


  • 120,510 miles


On Saturday August 1, 2015 around 7 pm I was driving back from a family theme park with my 5 children. I had to drive 2 hours to get back home. I couldn't even get out of the parking lot because I couldn't turn the wheel it was very hard both right and left. I got scared because I am pregnant and I wanted to get back home safely. I manage to get out but on our way home every time I stopped and had to make a turn it got really hard and had to put my emergency lights on because I had to make slower and wide turns and sometimes back up and try again to turn. I manage to get home around 10 pm. This is my only car, I just bought it 8 months ago and still have 3 more years to pay it off. This is the second time it does this. When I first got it out of the dealer I took it back the next day because it was doing the same problem but only when turning to one side not both. They fixed it but it is not even a year and I have the problem again but worst because I cant' turn either way. If there is a problem with the steering wheel why haven't you recall it? it is dangerous to drive like this. I just fixed a few months ago some transmission parts because the transmission broke. I know that the transmission is a issue in this car also. These are seriously safety issues. Please help me out.

- Ceres, CA, USA

problem #177

Jul 282015


  • 120,000 miles
When attempting to turn at low speeds the power steering suddenly fails and vehicle crosses into traffic.

- W Terre Haute, IN, USA

problem #176

Mar 022015


  • miles
Back in September 2014, GM sent a letter regarding a defect in the steering column that causes steering to be very difficult when attempting to maneuver the car at low speeds. The letter states that GM would cover this malfunction without charge. When my car started having the identical symptoms that are listed in the letter, we called GM and took the car to the dealership. Per the dealership and GM although the symptoms are identical the origin of the problem is different; therefore, they refused to cover the $1,200 repair. It is unclear what the difference is and we have approach GM and the dealership several times considering the repair. I do still have the letter.

- Caledonia, MI, USA

problem #175

Sep 302009


  • 4,000 miles


Steering made noise within first year of purchase. Was told nothing was wrong with vehicle after each scheduled service. Steering became stiffer and noisier over time. Paid $1,100 to replace the steering housing and other related parts in July, 2015.

- Charleston, SC, USA

problem #174

May 182011


  • miles
For several years I have been having ongoing problems with the power steering on my Traverse. I have seen countless other similar claims on Chevy forums. I have had dealer replace parts, but problems return. Chevy offered some owners a repair for vehicles under 150000 miles or 10 years, but now I have gone past that they refuse to cover repair. This loss of steering control is unsafe and a more permanent remedy should be taken care of on this material defect from GM.

- Latrobe , PA, USA

problem #173

Jun 012015


  • 75,000 miles
At low speeds, especially while braking, the power steering fails. This has caused several close accidents. The loss of steering only occurs at low speeds; for example while turning into a driveway, driving a store parking lot, or making a turn at a traffic light.

- Savona, NY, USA

problem #172

Mar 252015


  • 66,000 miles
Steering is loud. Hard to turn. April 09, 2015 dealership stated my steering gears were leaking and needed rack and pinion replaced. Quoted $1785. It's difficult to steer, locks up and is quite unsafe. Chevy should repair this issue at no cost due to the safety concerns and the thousands and thousands of complaints.

- Plainfield, IL, USA

problem #171

Jan 012015


  • 55,000 miles


During the winter season, I periodically started hearing a clunking sound as I was making directional turns in my vehicle (a 2009 Chevy Traverse). Therefore, during my previous oil change, I asked my mechanic to take it for a test drive, but he did not hear anything at that time. Yesterday, I was in for another oil change and again I asked my mechanic to test drive it, but this time he did hear the clunking sound and ultimately found that the rack & pinion steering unit needed to be replaced. Both professionally and on computer "on-line" web sites, there are numerous complaints of early failures of the rack & pinion steering, on the GMC acadia, Buick enclave and Chevy Traverse, SUV type vehicles. I have owned several vehicles over the last 30 years and never had to replace the entire rack & pinion steering unit on a vehicle that was less than ten years old (only six, in this instance) and had such low mileage (recently passed 60,000 miles). Obviously, there is a flaw in the design or in the production of this steering mechanism. There are too many premature failures on these series of vehicles. GM should own up to their mistakes, but as with their ignition switch problems, they would rather ignore the problem. I have owned several GM vehicles and have mostly been satisfied with their products. If I have to spend almost $2000 to fix their mistake, this will be the last new (or used) GM car I purchase. My previous SUV was a 2002 Toyota highlander. I purchased it "new" and kept it for over ten years and drove over 100,000 miles on it. Other than wear and tear items (brakes, tires, battery, etc.), I did not experience any "abnormal" failures, in any of the vehicles major components.

- East Islip, NY, USA

problem #170

Jul 212014


  • 45,000 miles
Power steering malfunctions at low to moderate speeds of 5 to 25 mph. The vehicle goes into manual steering and it is almost impossible to turn the wheel in order to go in to a turn. This has begun happening while driving at speeds of 45 to 55mph as well. I noticed the problem when I first brought my vehicle and reported it to the dealer. The said there was no issue. Now the problem is getting worse. I must remain in my lane and not attempt to make any quick turns. Or the steering wheel will lockup on me. I am afraid that I will not be able to control my vehicle and do injury to others as well as, myself,

- Havre De Grace, MD, USA

problem #169

Apr 132015


  • 135,000 miles
Power steering ceases to function at low speeds, as in no power steering at all. Has caused near collision several times during slow speed turns as power steering ceases to function mid-turn without warning. This causes manual steering mode on a large car in a tight space. Has also happened at moderate speeds. Manual steering on this car is difficult for an adult male. Nearly impossible for my lady drivers. Again, significant safety hazard as it occurs with no warning.

- Vandalia, OH, USA

problem #168

Apr 152015


  • 156,000 miles
I was driving and the vehicle starting losing power then it wouldn't start. After a while of sitting it started then lost power again now it won't stay started.

- Parish, NY, USA

problem #167

Nov 032014


  • 74,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Chevrolet Traverse. While operating the vehicle at various speeds, the power steering suddenly malfunctioned and the steering wheel became very difficult to turn. The failure was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 74,000.

- Franklin, LA, USA

problem #166

Jan 122015


  • 78,900 miles
I noticed when I went from park to drive leaving a spot and turned by steering wheel to the left it was a little tight. As time has gone, it has gotten extremely worse. On April 26, 2015, I was leaving a driveway and tried to turn the steering wheel to the right and could hardly turn it. This is happening every day now when I start off and it happens more when I turn left than when I turn right. I am afraid that if I am at a crossover on a multi-lane highway, I will not be able to turn my steering wheel in time to get out of the way of on-coming traffic. What is being done about this. My vehicle has been in the shop for 5 recalls already. This was a lemon from get go.

- Franklin, LA, USA

problem #165

Apr 042015


  • 89,512 miles
The steering gear in my 2009 Chevy Traverse has failed prematurely for a second time. The problem was diagnosed during a routine oil change at my local dealership. The original steering gear was replaced at 46,000 miles in 2011 and my vehicle requires a new unit approximately 43,000 miles later. Failure to replace the componant will result in steering difficulty that can lead to a crash. To put this in perspective, I am replacing the steering gear at the same frequency one would normally buy new tires for vehicle. There are several indications there is a problem with General Motors' lamda platform. Via a 2012 service bulletin, GM modified the steering gear part number and made changes to the replacement process to prevent steering gear seal failures. Secondly, a service manager at an independant Chevy dealership confirmed that he has seen a significant increase in steering gear failures at his facililty. Lastly, there are hundreds of documented complaints on the NHTSA site and Chevy internet forums describing this exact problem. Despite the evidence above, GM will not replace the steering gear and cover the cost 100%. the corporation is not standing behind their Chevy product but, more importantly, I believe their complaint resolution processes are masking a clear quality and safety issue. I hope the NHTSA can effect some change.

- Naperville, IL, USA

problem #164

Sep 192014


  • 107,000 miles
When driving at slow speeds and then making a turn the wheel locks up. It is almost impossible to turn. It is very dangerous and hard to keep from turning into the cars in the other lane. It happens at spontaneous times. The problem is happening more and more frequently as time goes on. I looked it up to see if other Chevy Traverse 2009 owners where having the same problem and there are several with the exact same complaint on I do not have the money to fix it and if it is a manufacturing problem I shouldn't have too. I will never buy another Chevrolet and will spread the word via facebook and by word of mouth if Chevrolet refuses to admit that this is a recall and have it repaired.

- Vidalia, GA, USA

problem #163

Mar 302015


  • 76,324 miles
Brought vehicle in for oil change, tech noted steering gear was leaking fluid and quoted $2000 to replace. After reading the tsb, several forums online and these complaints it has become apparent that rack failure is common place on these vehicles.

- Eden Prairie, MN, USA

problem #162

Feb 222015

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 88,268 miles
My power steering pump failed and the rack and pinion system is leaking on my 2009 Chevy Traverse. After some research this is a very common issue the GM is not addressing properly. They will replace the pump but the cost of replacing the rack and pinion will not be covered. There have been no recalls and this issue. This can occur while driving and could cause an accident and even death. GM needs to address this situation before that happens.

- Louisville, KY, USA

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