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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
25 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
67,505 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 29 of 33)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #99

May 152004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,500 miles


Vehicle experienced steering and transmission problems. The steering went out, forcing the vehicle to the right side of the road and into an embankment. Consumer had the vehicle towed to a service center. Transmission will not engage into the interlock. If going into reverse and changing into drive it was difficult to control vehicle. Consumer must use about 45 lbs of pressure to get the gear shift to operate smoothly. Also, vehicle was having brake problems. Consumer was driving on an off ramp and applied the brakes down to the floor. Vehicle slowed down but did not stop completely. Consumer contacted the manufacturer and the dealership, who told the consumer that there was a brake recall, and that the brake problem was electrical. The brakes were electronically programmed controlled. Recall campaign; 04V190000. Summary: Some of these passenger vehicles have an electronic control unit (ECU) that may calculate a higher than actual vehicle speed because of an erratic rear-wheel speed sensor signal, and cause ABS activation where it is not needed or needed ABS activation to be extended during braking as the vehicle speed drops to about 3 mph. The trunk release button on the drivers door came apart. The shifter handle broke. The brake pedal went to the floor after being in traffic.

- Sebastian, FL, USA

problem #98

Dec 312004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,000 miles
While driving at low speeds electric steering failed three times. As a result, there was a thumping noise when attempting to turn in either direction.

- Apalachin, NY, USA

problem #97

Dec 282004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
When the consumer made a right turn onto the freeway, the steering wheel locked up without warning. The consumer was able to maintain control of the vehicle and pulled over. The consumer turned off the vehicle and restarted it and drove home. The consumer contacted the mechanic for an appointment.

- Huntington Park, CA, USA

problem #96

Dec 162004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,300 miles


The vehicle lost power steering control while driving 25 mph. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. The dealer informed the consumer that the power steering module needed to be replaced. The adjuster assembly on the passenger seat belt was replaced.

- Caledonia, MI, USA

problem #95

Dec 122004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,450 miles
While wife was driving 2004 Chevrolet Malibu in city traffic, power steering suddenly failed concurrent with alarm chime and repair car light. She had to drive straight through two intersections and struggled to immediately park the car, and called me for assistance. After restarting the car, power steering was restored (no alarm or light). Took car to dealer the following morning for repairs. Dealer states that a recent bulletin may address this problem and requires a kit and replacement of steering column. Parts not in stock. Kit was ordered and is expected in about a week. Will schedule repair after parts kit is received. This problem should immediately be upgraded to a safety recall item to minimize future accidents in less forgiving driving conditions.

- Pelham, AL, USA

problem #94

Dec 132004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving my 2004 Chevy Malibu lt a light will come on. This light is a picture of a car with a tool inside it. A beep also comes on followed by a message that says power steering. This has happened to me three times now. When this happens I lose all control of the power steering. It takes a lot of effort to turn my wheel. After I turn the car off and let it sit for a while, the problem doesn't occur for another 1-3 weeks.

- Independence, MO, USA

problem #93

Nov 282004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11,400 miles


While driving at high speed of 65-70 mph vehicle momentarily lost power steering. Vehicle was taken to the dealer, who found that the steering column assembly needed to be replaced.

- Fredonia, NY, USA

problem #92

Dec 082004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles
(1) was driving when suddenly power steering quit working. (2) power steering light came on and vehicle was almost impossible to steer. (3) calling sealership tomorrow, insurance agent said to report to you immediately as there is a problem with this starting to occur in Malibu. Ea04018_cat

- Mchenry, IL, USA

problem #91

Nov 192004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,700 miles
While driving at any speed power steering pump failed. As a result, steering became difficult. Ea04018_cat

- Grand Forks, ND, USA

problem #90

Dec 012004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,379 miles
While driving along, heard system warning, looked at message center display which said" power steering" and realized I had no power steering. I drove slowly in the lane that would require no changing lanes, slowed down dramatically and muscled my way through each turn in order to get home. I will take the car to the service department of the dealership in the morning. Ea04018_cat

- Clarkston, MI, USA

problem #89

Nov 252004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Vehicle pulled over/off the road when the power steering failed. Checked under the hood, but there was no sign of apparent malfunction. Took vehicle dealer for check up. Ea04018_cat

- Fredericksburg, VA, USA

problem #88

Nov 202004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,320 miles
2004 Chevrolet Malibu lt VIN # [xxx] - odometer reading 4320 miles - vehicle purchased 1/31/04. During normal city driving warning light came on, also ndicated a problem with power steering. Immediate total loss of power steering - husband able to pull off with great difficulty into a parking lot. Vehicle driven to a dealership - no service available on weekends. When vehicle was restarted the power steering was once again operational, and was driven 60 miles home. Vehicle was then driven 25 miles to a local dealership (where it was purchased) - no diagnostic check/repair or replacement of parts as yet. [xxx] updated 07/26/2012 information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- Lincoln City, OR, USA

problem #87

Oct 272004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,840 miles
I was driving straight down an interstate when the steering wheel made small jerking motions to the right and made a grinding noise. When I exited the interstate and was stopped at a red light the steering wheel continued to jerk on its own. This continued intermintely for a couple of days. Then I was turning into a gas station and the engine light came on and the power steering went out. After I restarted the car I had power steering again. I took it to the crest Chevrolet and they replaced the steering column and sensor assembly #10373948: Column ki (06518-pc). Ea04018_cat

- Fernandina Beach, FL, USA

problem #86

Nov 132004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,168 miles
The steering wheel locked up while driving 65 mph, the consumer pulled the vehicle over before stopping. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. Ea04018_cat the steering wheel vibrated uncontrollably. While receiving assistance, the steering wheel would not turn left or right.

- Tabernacle, NJ, USA

problem #85

Nov 082004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,383 miles
I have had many problems with my 04 Malibu. Rough idle, power steering faliure many times took to dealer 3 times could not duplicate, brought in with power steering out at it was duplicated, but could not figure out for a while told me to continue to drive, no safety factor.finally thought they figured out put in a new steering column, 9,000 miles later back to having problems with power steering. Also problems with hard shifting, and also with ignition sticking or continuing to turn over after leeting go of the key. I would not recomend this car to anyone and they should all be wife is terrified of the car and will not is at dealer right now we are driving a loaner. Ea04018_cat

- Hamlake, MN, USA

problem #84

Nov 082004


  • miles
Vehicle purchased in December, 2003. At approximately 14000 miles, November 2004, while driving, power steering failed. Turned ignition off and restarted car; power steering worked briefly, then failed again. Turned ignition off and back on; able to drive vehicle home. Made service appointment, but have not yet had vehicle serviced. Ea04018_cat

- West Chester, PA, USA

problem #83

Sep 252004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,000 miles
While driving about 5 minutes on back roads at 35-40 mph there was vibration in steering wheel. It would jerk back and forth about 1/2" each way. Tried to turn right, but steering wheel would only turn to between 2 and 3 O'clock. However, it took all consumer's effort to even turn that much. Saw wrench light up, heard ding, and saw power steering on radio. Was able to get vehicle into gas station parking lot, about 3 minutes after she felt jerking. Restarted vehicle, and steering was fine. It happened about 3 weeks later again, the third time in about 2 weeks while consumer was in driveway. Dealer replaced the steering column. Ea04018_cat

- Vandalia, OH, USA

problem #82

Aug 092004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 22,000 miles
While driving on highway at 50 mph steering jerked from side to side, nearly losing control. When on regular street problem was not so noticeable. Also, heard continuous knocking noises when making turns. Have taken vehicle to dealer, and mechanic replaced steering column. It worked for awhile but got worse in September. Took vehicle back to dealer, and mechanic replaced the rack and pinion. It partially resolved problem, but knocking continued. Took vehicle back, and mechanic replaced the steering shaft. Knocking noise was not resolved. Ea04018_cat

- Bushkill, PA, USA

problem #81

Oct 262004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,563 miles
Power steering assist failed while driving 35 mph. The dealer was notified. Ea04018_cat the steering wheel started to pull and shake to the left. The consumer was informed that a part was needed for the power steering. A light on the dash had illuminated and the power steering had gone out again. Also, the foam strip near the windshield was coming out of place.

- Lafayette, CO, USA

problem #80

Oct 152004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 2,715 miles
On March 22, 2004 at 2,715 miles steering column locked while driving 56 mph. During the attempt to unlock the steering column consumer broke the steering wheel. At the present time, vehicle stalled while driving 45 mph. Consumer believed the problem was due to the computer module. Dealer was not contacted during both incidents. Ea04018_cat

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

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