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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
20 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
80,478 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.

2006 Chevrolet Malibu steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 14 of 29)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #308

Jan 052013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 96,355 miles


Upon returning from vacation, we retrieved our 2006 Chevrolet Malibu from a friends house and the car beeped once and my husband was like "what's that", then I noticed in the message center area that it was flashing power steering, which it had never done before. Now, every time I get into the car, the car beeps and the power steering message comes on in the message center. I have researched the issue and have noticed that GM is not accepting full responsibility for these defective steering columns/power steering motors, only those select few (cobalts, etc.)"? apparently quite a few are being recalled in Canada, but not in the U. S. and it only leads me to the question: Why?" I have been a loyal Malibu owner (this is my third one) but if GM is not willing to step up and admit a serious safety defect, I may have to rethink my choice of vehicle ownership.

- Cheney, WA, USA

problem #307

Jul 262012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 160,000 miles
The power steering light came on the steering wheel started to jerk. So I put off the road turn the car off look under the hood for a power steering pump fluid holder notice there wasn't one. So I started the car and it drove fine. So lately, it keep happen very often but the Chevrolet company say that it is not a defect in the car. But I have read a lot of complaints about the same problem that I am having with this car. I have carry the car in to get it service to see what was wrong with it and it was the power steering column. The dealer with not paid for it because I have to many miles on my car. But if I have only 150,000 miles they would. Because the mechanic say that it is not a defect in the power steering that they will not fix it. It's cause I have a lot of miles on it and that I didn't buy it new according to the Chevrolet company but if there are a lot complaints about the same thing then I feel there is a defect in the car not how many miles you put on the car. I believe there should be a recall on the power steering.

- Como, MS, USA

problem #306

Dec 012012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 47,000 miles
On accel loss of power steering assist, steering very hard to move hit brake to slow down steering recovered. Accelerated vehicle again and was able to reproduce effect mention above. Steering very hard to turn in the morning hours and lose of steering happens.

- Bellerose, NY, USA

problem #305

Jun 052012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 88,000 miles


When driving and turning to the right..the steering gets stiff and the power steering alarm comes on. Once stopped I can turn the vehicle off and crank it again...the power steering resets. As you can imagine this is what I have to do each and everytime. The dealer finds nothing wrong with it when I take it please advise. The fluid is good and there is no leaks.

- Fayetteville, NC, USA

problem #304

Dec 032012


  • 73,000 miles
Hard to turn steering left 4 brief moment. Power steering light display"??"

- Norwalk , OH, USA

problem #303

Jul 312012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 116,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while traveling 65 mph, the steering wheel seized without warning. The contact shut off and restarted the vehicle as the steering wheel began to function normally. The vehicle was driven to the dealer for repairs. The contact was unsure of the exact repairs that were performed on the vehicle. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred several times. The manufacturer was not contacted about the issue. The failure and current mileages were 116,000. Updated 12/14/12

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #302

Jan 052010


  • 40,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact started the ignition and noticed when turing the steering wheel into the left direction a loud noise would emit. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where the front swing arm suspension was replaced. The failure recurred and the vehicle was taken to a different technician who stated the defect was contributed to the steering column. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer had not been notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 40,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Chesapeake, VA, USA

problem #301

Sep 092012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 134,000 miles
Steering wheel locked 3 times within a 0.5 mile distance driving no more than 25 mph while my kids were in the car with me.

- Mount Bethel, PA, USA

problem #300

Apr 032012


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the power steering failed and the vehicle became extremely difficult to maneuver. The contact mentioned that the power steering warning light was illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed that the steering column was malfunctioning and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 70,000 and the current mileage was 77,000.

- Glendale , AZ, USA

problem #299

Jun 152012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 54,000 miles
I was driving and my power steering went out-completely. It was the hardest thing to turn that I have ever driven and I own a 66 mustang that was not equipped with power steering. There is literally no way to steer the car when driving very slow like when you go to pull into the driveway. My father-in law builds/designs production cars for a living and he took my car to a dealership he works with and they told him that the defective part goes out about every 30,000 miles. The cost to replace just the part is around $800 without labor. The actual part that is defective is not sold on its own so you have to buy a whole new steering column since the small part that is defective is riveted to the column. The dealership said they could not do anything for my car. The column had been replaced once before by a dealership and apparently did not fix the problem. Chevy will not cover their bad parts/design and it is one of the most unsafe things that can happen while driving. Its like when Toyota priuses accelerator would get stuck-its just as dangerous. What needs to make a recall happen" it has affected so many people and it is very dangerous. Do we need to wait until the problem causes multiple tragedies to say now its worth the time to fix the problem and do good business" back your product Chevy.

- Riverview, FL, USA

problem #298

Oct 022007

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 38,895 miles


The electric steering assist stopped working. Very hard to control car. When I pulled over and shut car off, and restarted the Malibu, the power steering came back long enough to get it back home. Had it fixed and cost me over $600 at the Chevy dealer. At 56000 miles I was contacted by GM, and they re-imbursed me for the cost. Since then, I am now experiencing a somewhat loud and aggravating clunking or shifting noise when turning either direction or taking off from a start. I am very concerned about the safety of the whole steering mechanism and the stress being put on other components making them fail. I have also replaced the ball joints on the car. My problem is that not only the safety issue, but the resale value is severely reduced. Who in there right mind would buy the car knowing its problems? there needs to be a recall on this vehicle to address those issues.

- Ludington, MI, USA

problem #297

Jun 252012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 89,000 miles
Was very satisfied with performance of car until this episode. Fortunately, my son & I made it back from California, the day before we came down donner pass. Next day started to take car and verily got going when I couldn't steer, very hard almost didn't make it back home. Power steering message displayed across radio system along with bell sound. I immediately took car to dealers which cost $120. For them to diagnosis. They reported the brain (motor/module code CO807) needed to be replaced for $958. First, then they would check steering column which would involve additional cost. I don't have the money for repair & ended up bringing car home safely after paying for diagnosis. I have the invoice which they gave with their recommendations and my decline of service. Here it sits, I'm too scared to drive and am lucky enough to have access to another vehicle for the time being. Going to trade in and will never buy another Chevy product! this is definitely a hazard and an accident waiting to happen. A "recall" needs to be issued for everyone's safety.

- Reno, NV, USA

problem #296

Jan 172012


  • miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the power steering failed. The contact spoke with the manufacturer and was told that they were aware of the problem, but that the vehicle could be driven without power steering capabilities. The contact stated that the when the power steering failed, the vehicle would pull strongly to the left and it would become very hard to keep the vehicle straight. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was unknown. The failure mileage was unknown and the current mileage 102,000.

- Oklahoma City , OK, USA

problem #295

Jun 012009


  • 40,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering wheel forced itself to drive straight and became unresponsive while making turns. The contact shut the vehicle off and the vehicle performed as normal upon restart. The vehicle was taken to dealer, where the steering column was replaced. The failure recurred and the dealer was unable to duplicate the failure. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and no further assistance was provided. The VIN was unavailable. The failure mileage was 40,000 and the current mileage was 80,000.

- Mountain Top , PA, USA

problem #294

Sep 072011

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 68,000 miles
The power steering does not work when I turn the car on sometimes. It has happened several times. I turn the ignition on, there is a bell, and the electronic message says "power steering." I turn the car off, wait several minutes, re-start it, and then it works again.

- Midland, MI, USA

problem #293

Apr 012008


  • 29,754 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering wheel seized when making left or right turns. The dealer inspected the failure, but was unable to determine the cause. The manufacturer denied any assistance with repairs. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 29,754 and the current mileage was 72,320.

- Elyria, OH, USA

problem #292

Oct 032011


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving 15 mph and attempting a left turn, the power steering seized without warning. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed that the steering column needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure who did not offer any assistance since the vehicle was not included in any recalls. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 80,000 and the current mileage was 89,000.

- Lakewood, NJ, USA

problem #291

Mar 232012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • miles
While driving the steering column on the 2006 Chevrolet Malibu, locks up.

- Clarksburg, MD, USA

problem #290

Mar 122012

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 10,884 miles
I just purchased my 2006 Chevrolet Malibu about a month ago. It had really low miles for a car that old( (99939 at the time of purchase). I love my car and it has done nothing really to anger me. I got a power steering warning through my radio display. The car drove normal so I paid it little or no attention. The one day I walked to the car and noticed that there was fluid leaking from under the car. Since I only had the car a very short time I took it to the warranty center to be looked at, they put my car on the computer and no defect codes came up. The mechanic asked me what color was the fluid that was leaking, like I would remember that! I told him I didn't know. Put a white piece of paper underneath there and wait a little while. The shop has had my car over a day and can tell me nothing. I am not one of those people that waits on something to happen. Warning lights and defect codes pop up for a reason. The reason I don't know but I will eventually. With all I have read on the internet about the steering all the problems started with defect codes. Is there a serious problem with the steering or with the fault display system?

- Winston Salem, NC, USA

problem #289

Apr 012011

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
(April 2011) leaving work one afternoon, I began to drive off the campus and as I began to drive the steering wheel began to tighten and as soon as I tried to make a left hand turn, the steering wheel locked up and would not turn. That day I ended up in the ditch and I'm thankful that no one was hurt. Every time I proceed to make a left hand turn and it's hot outside, the steering wheel locks up causing me to grab the wheel as hard as I can and merge to the shoulder to shut the car off and restart so the steering wheel becomes drivable. I called the dealership and they gave an estimated cost of $1500 plus dollars to fix the problem. I did not have the money and just suffered through the problem. Pulling over and restarting the car. When the weather cooled off in September or so the car had no problems and drove fine. Now its March 2012 in Mississippi and extremely hot and humid and now the steering wheel is locking up basically every time I get in the car. I can just be driving and it lock up. I cannot gamble with my life nor my children and I'm fearful that this car is going to cost us our lives if I continue to drive it around. Help!

- Flowood, MS, USA

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