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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
81,447 miles
Total Complaints:
119 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (46 reports)
  2. leave ignition on for 10 minutes and restart (30 reports)
  3. have GM research and fix their problem!!! (18 reports)
  4. had ignition module and harness replaced (5 reports)
  5. had the ignition cylinder(where key is inserted)replaced (5 reports)
  6. replacing sensors for anti-theft (3 reports)
2002 Chevrolet Malibu electrical problems

electrical problem

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2002 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 4 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #59

Mar 062009

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,000 miles


2 years ago my car just wont start that anti theft light just a blinking take it to Sullivan Chevrolet in Champagne to get it fixed 450.00 they say so i pay i need my car , a month later the car starts this crap again take it back they say defect of part and they fix it again. Now i am hear almost 2 years later and the freaking car has done it again i am tired of this crap Chevy your car is a piece of crap i have been in the shop with this car for several different problems fuel pump catalytic converter and more some one help me i am not even done paying for this freaking car.

- , Rantoul, IL, USA

problem #58

Mar 212009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,000 miles

Although the "wait 10 minutes until the light stops blinking..." technique seems to work, I am getting increasingly annoyed with the frequency and under what circumstances it continues to happen.

A friend hooked me up with a guy who runs a car stereo and alarm shop and he suggests that I get an alarm programmed to the car. I know what I am doing tomorrow. I will re-post after doing a bit of research.

- , Torrance, CA, USA

problem #57

Sep 122008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

I have a 2002 Chevy Malibu and it just wasn't starting. paid our mechanic to take a look at it and he said it was a blown head gasket. bought the stuff for fuel pump replacement. came across this website and bam! found the underlying problem. called my man at home to follow instructions and lo and behold the damn thing started. just wanted to say thanks! it worked!!

- , Whiteriver, AZ, USA

problem #56

Jan 282009

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,078 miles


I bought this car from the original owner, who bought it new in Oct 2001 and had never had any problems. When I bought the car in June of 2007, the car had 25,000 miles on it. It now has 48,000 miles. Last month I noticed the struts were beginning to make noise, and had them replaced. Then the check engine light came on. I checked all fluids and everything seemed ok. Four days later the anti-theft light came on, but would then go out.I drove the car for a week, until yesterday, when I drove to work and at the end of my shift, the car would not start.

I was about to have the car towed, when my boss told me to drive my work truck home and told me to check on the internet for trouble codes. I came upon this site by accident and will try the ten minute thing tomorrow.

I agree with all the other posts who suggest that GM should take care of this problem. If not, they should offer a solution for the poor people who get stuck with these vehicles,

I think GM, and others should provide free diagnostics on cars that are less than 10 years old and keep having problems. This car is less than 8 years old, and shouldn't start having all these problems, especially with the low mileage.

So far I've had new tires put on the front at 30,000. The struts two days later. Fog lights quit working. The car has been well taken care of as for oil changes and such.

- , Mishawaka, IN, US

problem #55

Jan 032009

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

I believe this has happened in the past and the dealership called it a fuel pump and charged me a gazillion dollars to fix it. Today I read the fix offered on this web site and it started right up.

Auto repairs and Lawyers!

- , Chatsworth, CA, US

problem #54

May 152008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 91,000 miles

This is one of the most annoying issues I've had with this car, but ultimately, near as I can tell it is one of the cheaper ones to fix. I spoke with a repair man at my local Chevy dealer, and explained the issue I was having, and everyone that has reported this knows exactly what I'm talking about. You go to drive off to work or go to an important appointment, go to start up your car, and it turns over, and turns over, and turns over, but never starts. Then you notice "DAMN IT! THEFT SYSTEM LIGHT!" So of course, you have to leave your car in the on position for 10 minutes until the light turns off, shut off the car, and turn it back on. What I was told is basically the 2002 GM Theft System is a POS. Instead of throwing on this light before you start your car, and having a special way to unlock the doors or a different way to turn this off, you have to try to start the car, fail, then wait. And it is possible that there could be ignition issues, or tumbler issues, but the issue I had was I wasn't using an authentic GM key. See, I wanted a second key for my car, not realizing that the key special and could offset any theft system if it wasn't authentic. So a key made a the local Walmart wasn't triggering "something" in the PassLock system, causing the system to fail, and your car not to start. Even switching back to the old key didn't work right away. Apparently, once you've used a bad key so much, something stays locked in the system, causing the problem to re-occur at any time. What I had done was a PassLock system reset + had an authentic Chevy Key cut and programmed, and made sure it was the only key that I've used. Since then, I've had no issues with the PassLock feature.

- , Olean, NY, USA

problem #53

Sep 092008

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles


Had four different places work on car said it was the fuel pump we took it down twice still did not work this is my second week without a car and my original fuel pump still in great condition is in my shed guess i will save for a souvenir, just took my car to the dealer, it is the anti theft system,so I am waiting to hear the cost and I am really upset so I am venting it already cost me tons of dollars I don't have now it is going to cost me even more was there a easier solution than this? can any one really tell me . I am mad .

- , Tampa, FL, USA

problem #52

Jun 142007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,000 miles

The theft light stays on and sometimes the car wont start. I have to leave the keys in the ignition for 10 mins and try again! It has taken up to 30 minutes to finally start on occasion! Talk about being late to work! =/

- , Dallas, TX, USA

problem #51

Jul 102008

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

This car is a piece of Junk!! It started acting up around 70,000 miles. It would start when it wanted to. Then one day it died on me while on the highway. WOULD NOT START!! I needed a complete new ignition! I have spent about 3,000 on repairs on this junk. Heater core went, antifreeze leak, rotors, and many other smaller repairs. Im sick of this car and cant wait to get rid of it!! Also with all the complaints I have been reading about the starting problems and anti freeze leaks people are having with this car where are the recalls?

- , Sandstone, MN, USA

problem #50

May 082007

(reported on)

Malibu LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

End of April 07 went out to start car and it turned over, but would not catch and start. A week before this I was in an SA parking lot and turned the car off, when I turned if back on the Power windows, locks, radio, etc, would not work. Started it and drove it about 7 miles to a meeting. Had it towed out my driveway last time it wouldn't start, took it to Goodyear Service Station, They called and said it needed a new PCM which is the Powertrain Control Module or computer brain for the car. They replaced it with a reconditioned part and charged me $512 plus two tows. 9 Days later it did the same thing, would not start, had it towed back to them and it started for them. My gas gage doesn't work, I can't turn the radio on as it resets things like my transmission. My transmission is slipping in 1st and 2nd. Took to a reliable (AAMCO) shop to have fixed. They said nothing wrong with Transmission, but car throwing 3 error codes off PCM, one for no serial communication, one for too much pressure on the transmission and one for fuel. The AAMCO Shop told me a PCM has to be flashed by the dealer when installed in your car to relearn or reprogram it. The Goodyear shop says no, no need to. I don't know who to trust anymore. I am fed up with this car. It is so unreliable that I am afraid to take it out of town. It has cost me too much money in repairs and I still owe on it as I bought it in 2004 with 9K miles on it. It only has 60K miles on it now. I am trying to trade the damn thing in for a Honda or Toyota, but the Honda and Toyota folks don't want my piece of crap Malibu, they said they couldn't give me much and in truth didn't even want it as a trade, they wanted cash. So now I have a car that looks great inside and out, with new tires and battery, etc that has been perfectly maintained but can't be depended on to run or shift well. I feel really screwed over with this Chevy and it will be my last.

- , Hastings, MN, USA

problem #49

May 292008

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,500 miles


This is my third time having this problem car won't start and ANTI THEFT LIGHT IS ON the first two I have to pay really much. The third time I tried what I read in this site, and it worked saved me a lot of money. I need a reliable car, I am a cancer patient, need to see my doctors on a regular schedule and for my treatment, chemo and radiation. Its really very important, but this is the third time and we need to look at this seriously, considering for all the people who had the same trouble.

- , Beaconsfield, Quebec, Canada

problem #48

May 242008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,000 miles

My wife took a job out of town so we're getting ready to move. She took the Chevy Malibu with her, thinking it would be a more reliable car. It's not. The stupid anti-theft system keeps turning on and preventing her from driving her own car. What kind of an imbecile would be building and selling cars that prevent the owner from using them? We don't know what to do. Any advice? We're probably going to buy a Toyota from here on out.

- , Duluth, MN, USA

problem #47

Mar 012008

Malibu LS No Idea

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

Just had this fixed and finally all works well! After three years of issues, we replaced the tumbler (where the key turns inside the ignition) and the difference is amazing. I had problems with the theft device, the radio and clock, the turn signal, and anything else electric. One day after the theft device went off three times in a row, EVERYTHING died. I couldn't even scoot the seat back! The problem proved to be a broken bit inside the tumbler. It cost the repair shop about $300 to order this from Chevy, but now I have a wonderful car! PLEASE consider looking into this! I'm telling everyone I see with similar issues...

- , Madison, IN, USA

problem #46

Feb 012007

Malibu 4 Door Sedan V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

Its like every three or four months this happens, this last time the chey dealer charged us $965.53 to fix it, they said it was the fuel pump, it ran Great for three months and know the Theft system light is flashing and the car will not start. AGAIN !!! Does anyone know what can be done to fix this poor excuse for an Automobile

- , Sylacauga, AL, USA

problem #45

Feb 182005

(reported on)

Malibu LE

  • 52,000 miles

"Theft System" light pays the dash a visit from time to time. The length of its stay is varies. Not always following these visits, but at just as random, the anti-theft device 'trips' the system and the fuel pump is shut off. I can't locate a Hanes (does anyone know where to get one for the 2002?) or other repair manual to further investigate the matter and I don't have the money to incessantly take the car into the shop - only to receive the same answers, "nothing is wrong," "new fuel-pump," and "rewiring". Hellllpppppp!!!!!!!!!! What is it exactly that is going on with my car?!!!

- , Altoona, PA, USA

problem #44

May 192005

(reported on)


  • 37,000 miles

I purchased a 2002 Chevrolet Malibu in February of 2003 with 33,100 miles on it. Really nice car I thought. When the 36,000 mile factory warranty expired thats when the trouble began. At 37,000 miles the theft system lock up causing the car to die. I had to sit in 90 degree weather waiting for road side service to come tow it to the shop.

At 42,000 miles the same problem occurs again. When it was taken to the shop the service guy told me that the pass lock shorted out. At 46,250 miles the problem existed again this time the remote keyless entry begin to act funny. It wouldn't' unlock or lock the car. I thought it was the batteries in the remote control, turns out the pass lock was started shortened out and they had to re program the computer in the car again. After this the same problem started again this time at 48,500 miles same problem occurred . One month after this the car dies again at 48,710 miles. This car is not reliable and I didn't not feel safe in it.

- , Birmingham, AL, USA

problem #43

Mar 252008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

My mother has been having TERRIBLE problems with the anti-theft light on her Malibu coming on and the car not starting. I THINK she said it will just stop out of the blue, too, and then not start. My brother is a retired mechanic and he determined that the anti-theft system (whose light they had never seen before this problem) is disabling the gas pump. It took him several days to determine it's a computer problem.

Then the dealer had it several more days and said it didn't act up for them. Mother got it back and, by damn, got stuck at the beauty shop yesterday. This is VERY dangerous for an 82 old woman who drives like an 82 yr. old woman... who is carting around her 87 yr. old wheelchair-bound husband with Alzheimer's!! What can we DO?

- , Austin, TX, USA

problem #42

May 062007

(reported on)

Malibu LS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

Just like everyone else, theft system prevents car from starting. I have had the car since new and the problem started at about 75,000 miles. This happens at least once or twice every month. Luckily I have a friend who is a mechanic for local dealership who told me how to solve problem as others have said saving me towing and repair bills of nearly $700. I have had many problems with the electric system. The flashers-turn signals, the air cond switching to fresh air and the radio-cd player. I believe this is a wide spread problem and needs to be addressed by GM!

- , Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #41

Nov 062006

Malibu 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

My Malibu does the same thing. Anti-theft light on, it doesn't start. Wait 10 minutes with key on, anti-theft light stops flashing and stays on, turn key off, wait 15 seconds, turn key on and start the car, anti-theft light stays on but car starts. Why doesn't GM just recall these cars ant fix the problem. If I knew how to bypass this anti-theft thing, I would. The car over-all is a nice riding vehicle. All this non-sense with with anti-theft problem cause frustration why you running late and then you car doesn't want to start. Try using that excuse to your boss more than twice !!!!

- , Victor, NY, USA

problem #40

Jun 152007

Malibu LS 3100 Sfi

  • Automatic transmission
  • 91,230 miles

I ,was chevrolet owner for number of years,Chevy company is mostly interested in making money,and afraid to have these type of problems repaired and repair cost is still going up and company continue ignored this frustrating problem.

Emergency situation is our main concerns,because our grandson needs to get to hospital soon as possible for his medical treatment for seizures.

God forbid if he has addition problems because the family vehicle the fails to start, when he needs to get to hospital.

BLAME the company for failing to take any action for the repairs the company knows this is a problem .

They are aware of !!!!!!!!

- , Parker, Az/Lapaz, USA

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