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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
25 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
72,050 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 10 of 35)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

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

problem #501

Jan 242014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 119,000 miles
Driving at 55mph out of nowhere powersteering lost power. Had no control of steering as well as the vehicle. Finally power steering returned to normal and I was able to pull the car off the road. Checked for error codes and found out the code is for a sensor for the electronic steering for this vehicle. Many complaints about this issue. Why has no recall been put in place for this known problem. Will be going to see an attorney too file a lawsuit. You would think that the steering of the car would be a number 1 priority for any car maker.

- Tyler, TX, USA

problem #500

Jan 202014

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 96,000 miles


Backing out of driveway steering light came on and steering wheel very hard to turn, next time vehicle started problem was not there, happened again two days later at stop sign, almost turned into on coming traffic. Very dangerous problem. 2005 and up recalled why not 2004?

- Spring Hill, FL, USA

problem #499

Dec 262013


  • 130,000 miles
First of all I don't really expect this issue to be fixed as it has been going on for 10 years now with nothing happening to remedy the situation from either the government or Chevrolet, im doing this like others im sure to bring the problem to the front door and to make myself feel a little better, this car was meant to be a first car for my daughter and still is.what needs to be done is at least notify buyers that the Malibu has a very dangerous problem with the power steering before they buy it and that expect to pay at least $700 dollars once if your lucky.but most likely at least three times that amount according to owners and that Chevrolet has created a power steering system that will fail and hopefully not only kill the person driving it but others as well, and nobody seems to care or do anything, what's really bad is even if its fixed, the problem will likely occur again as this problem isn't even fixable by the same company that created it well I hope someone reads this but I doubt it and hopefully there's someone with morals still out there that has more power to do something than the average consumer can who knows this problem is the most obvious case of corporate greed and larceny I have ever seen in my life yet they are still getting away with it.go usa.

- Peoria, IL, USA

problem #498

Dec 282013


  • 200,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the driver was traveling approximately 55 mph when the steering wheel seized. The front wheels would not respond or turn in response to steering attempts. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 200,000.

- Custer , MI, USA

problem #497

Jun 202013


  • 150,000 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact was driving 55 mph when the power steering assist malfunctioned and the steering wheel became difficult to turn. The contact stated that the power steering warning light was also illuminated. The vehicle was diagnosed and the contact was informed that the power steering column was defective. The manufacturer was not notified of the defect. The failure mileage was 150,000.

- Thibodaux, LA, USA

problem #496

Dec 172013


  • 140,500 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph and changing lanes, the power steering assist failed without warning. The vehicle was driven to the contact's residence and was not taken for inspection or repairs. The manufacturer was not made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 140,500.

- Troy, IL, USA

problem #495

Jun 152012


  • 65,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving approximately 55 mph, the steering wheel became stiff and difficult to maneuver. The power steering warning light also illuminated. The failure was recurring. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnosis where the mechanic stated that the steering column would need to be replaced. The manufacturer was not made aware if the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 65,000.

- Taylorsville, UT, USA

problem #494

Oct 012013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 155,000 miles
When driving down the road my cars power steering suddenly went out and the alarm came on, on the radio "power steering". sometimes it goes out just by putting my car reverse or drive. It also will go out while turning! this is a very serious issue as I have two small children and this can cause a wreck. This is my only way of going I can't afford to fix gms mistake!

- Bowdon, GA, USA

problem #493

Nov 062013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 156,000 miles


I was traveling on the interstate and went to make an exit, turn and lost the power steering after the wrench displayed on the dashboard. Per the dealer they advised the sensor is bad/faulty. I reviewed the other complaints similar to my experience per Chevy my VIN was not included in the investigation # PE04031 I would like to see the matter further researched if im having the exact issues as the other Malibu im not understanding why GM would repair the issue especially considering the safety issue.

- Fort Carson , CO, USA

problem #492

Jul 062011


  • miles
Power steering went out in my 2004 Chevy Malibu. Contacted dealer - they wouldn't do anything. Very dangerous the power steering is very intermittent, locks up and stays frozen/locked up until you cut the car off. When I cut the car back on it is unfrozen/unlocked and the steering works - however it goes out intermittently and always happens while driving. Multiple complaints on this vehicles steering, which is very expensive to replace. I have heard that there were recalls on some of the 04 Malibu, but not all of them for the power steering motor.

- Gordonsville, VA, USA

problem #491

Sep 132013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 141,000 miles
While driving home from work. I was turning into my apartment complex and my steering wheel tightened up. I ran into the median that divides the entrance and the exit of a complex. Due to not being able to turn the steering wheel. There was a message on my radio display that said power steering. After I hit the median, I turned my car off to get out and see the extent of the damage to my car and the property. When I got back into my car and started it again the steering was fine again. A few days later I experienced it the same problem again while drive on the highway during rush hour. After further research I have found that there are many others who have experienced the same problem and there seem to be no fix if the dealership can't find the problem. The dealership told me that if they were to take my word and fix the steering column and that did not fix the problem I would be out of $1000+ dollars. This is the only problem that I have ever had with this vehicle and there needs to be something done about this problem. Fast!!

- Pooler, GA, USA

problem #490

Oct 152013


  • 111,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering wheel seized and became hard to turn. The power steering warning light was also illuminated. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 111,000.

- Streetsboro , OH, USA

problem #489

Sep 072013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 60,090 miles
While out driving doing regular errands, I needed to make a right turn at an intersection and realized that the wheel would not move. I had to force the steering wheel to move in order to make the turn. I was afraid to go any further because I was on a relatively busy street and did not want to have an accident. I pulled over and called my son who told me that it sounded like the power steering failed. After I calmed down, I drove the car approximately two miles back to my home. I have informed Chevrolet of the problem.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #488

Aug 032011


  • 48,000 miles
2004 Chevrolet Malibu; steering problems; I had electrical power steering replaced 8/2011. Did ok until spring 2012, when weather became warmer. From spring to late fall, I have no power steering. This is dangerous. I never know when it will be going out. My car only had @45000 miles on it when it happened. This is just uncalled for. I have a young son; this is my only means of transportation; and it is dangerous. My car only has 64,000 miles on it now. I have contacted every Agency I am aware of, and cannot get a recall in place nor any advice on how to fix the problem. Please...need a recall!

- Kilmarnock, VA, USA

problem #487

Jul 302013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 154,112 miles
I was driving and when I went to turn the corner my steering went out. I could barely turn it. I ended up pulling over and sat for a while but then when I started driving again it didn't do it but than it happened again on 9/08/2013.

- Cleveland, OH, USA

problem #486

Sep 222013


  • 61,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving 40 mph, the power steering assist failed. The vehicle was restarted and performed normally. The vehicle had a power steering motor replacement previously but the problem had since recurred. The vehicle was not repaired or inspected since the recent failure. The manufacturer was notified of the incident. The approximate failure mileage was 61,000.

- Valley Stream , NY, USA

problem #485

Sep 062013


  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving 10 mph and attempting a turn, the steering wheel seized. The vehicle was pulled over and the contact allowed the vehicle to sit for several hours before the power steering assist resumed normal function. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for inspection or repairs. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 125,000.

- London, MI, USA

problem #484

Sep 052013


  • 53,000 miles
Power steering light has been coming on intermittently over the last 5 months. Today my power steering failed completely. Was very difficult to steer. After turning vehicle off then back on it started working again, then failed again. Apparently this is a common problem with this car.

- Pensacola, FL, USA

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