really awful
Crashes / Fires:
13 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
7 / 0
Average Mileage:
73,840 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 Maxx steering problems

steering problem

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2004 Chevrolet Malibu Maxx Owner Comments (Page 8 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #79

Nov 162010

Malibu Maxx

  • 150,000 miles


I own a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu maxx VIN [xxx]. every time I accelerate during a turn, the steering wheel locks, making it near impossible to turn the wheel. The lock stops when I let up on the gas. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Rio Vista, CA, USA

problem #78

Nov 012010

Malibu Maxx

  • miles
I have had my 2004 Malibu maxx since November 2007. I have never had any issues with the power steering until today (November 1st, 2010). I was trying to make a left turn when the check engine light came on, a few "dings" sounded, and the steering locked up. I was able to steer it to the shoulder to get out of the way of traffic. I had absolutely no idea what to do after that. I turned the car off, then on again, and the light was no longer on and the steering was fine. About 15 minutes after that when I was trying to make a slight right turn to exit the highway, it happened all over again. Thank god I wasn't going that fast both times. The second time, I turned the car off again and the car was fine after I turned it back on. I decided to research the issue and I am amazed that there are so many issues with the steering with this year, make, and model and nothing is being done about it. I am scared out of my mind to drive that car now.

- Bear, DE, USA

problem #77

Jan 082009

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
2004 Malibu maxx power steering cuts out while driving. Must put car in park turn it off and restart. Happens in the winter. Found on internet that other people have had the same problem. Happened numerous times last winter.

- Oneida, NY, USA

problem #76

Sep 282010

Malibu Maxx

  • miles


I have a 2004 Chevy Malibu maxx that I bought in may, 2006. About a year ago, while driving, the power steering went out. I searched for recalls and called a Chevrolet dealer. In my research I have found that I am not the only one with this problem. Not long after this, GM recalled the Chevy cobalt and some Pontiac models for the same thing. Everything that I have read says that you can still steer at the speed consistent with being on the interstate. My problem is, I live and work in a small town. It has now done this on me several times and at the slow speeds for a small town, I have trouble steering. Two of these times that the power steering went out I was at an intersection. Trying to take off and cross the intersection when this happens is very difficult. This is going to cause an accident. I want to know what GM is going to do about this problem.

- Steele, MO, USA

problem #75

Sep 242010

Malibu Maxx

  • 40,000 miles
Failure of power steering while accelerating vehicle. Steering direction becomes impossible to change until acceleration ceases. This has supposedly been fixed by the dealership two times previous to today. The last time it was fixed was only two weeks ago and while I was driving the kids into school this morning, the steering locked up, the dinging sound turned on, and the message board read power steering along with a tool that lit up on the dashboard.

- Hendersonville, TN, USA

problem #74

Sep 172010

Malibu Maxx

  • 85,000 miles
I was driving back home at night after work a hour away to bowie tx I work in fort worth. Going on hwy 287 which is a big hwy for traveling rigs, I was going 65 mph and I came to a turning the hwy and my power steering just goes out with any warning. I slammed on my brakes tapping the wall in the median. Looked on the information board and it said power steering. The next morning I looked on the internet and found around 10 to 15 websites that had this complaint with the Chevrolet Malibu maxx. I called GM Chevrolet in North richland hills and the on in Decatur and they both told me that the know this is a big deal the know about it but at this time there is nothing they can do for me. This is my wife's car and lucky this day I took it instead for her and my 3 year old son.

- Bowie , TX, USA

problem #73

Jun 142010

Malibu Maxx

  • 59,645 miles


2004 Malibu max power steering fails with no warning! it hasn't happened just once, but many times in the past few months. Took car to the dealer, they can only find 1 of the components to do the repair. Said it could take up to 3 months to get the part. Then the repair is going to cost a total of $1200. I have read hundreds complaints about the same thing happening. When are they going to do a recall" how many people have to die first? I don't want to be one of them. When is someone going to do something about this. I see that the NHTSA closed the investigation of the matter in 2004. What's that" open it up again.

- Hyde Park, NY, USA

problem #72

Aug 292010

Malibu Maxx

  • 50,000 miles
Electric power steering suddenly fails resulting in loss of power steering assistance.

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #71

Feb 012009

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • miles
I have a 2004 Malibu max. I have had problems with the steering column for the past 1 1/2 years. The rack and pinion and steering column was replaced last year after the power steering kept going out. A year later and the rack and pinion as been replaced again! the steering column is going to have to be replaced again as well! the power steering goes keeps going out, but if I turn the car off and back on it corrects the problem temporarily. There is no warning before it goes out. The 2005 has a recall out on it but not the 2004 and it is the same problem!

- Richmond, KY, USA

problem #70

Aug 032010

Malibu Maxx

  • 110,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu maxx. The contact was driving at approximately 35 mph when the power steering failed. The power steering warning light was illuminated as the vehicle independently veered off to the right. The contact was unable to maintain control of the vehicle and drove up a sidewalk, barely missing a mailbox. The contact shut off the vehicle and when restarting, the vehicle resumed normal operation. The vehicle was not yet taken to the dealer for a diagnostic of the failure. The failure and current mileages were approximately 110,000.

- Baytown , TX, USA

problem #69

Jul 132010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 56,000 miles


Driving down the highway and power steering warning and chime start, then power steering goes out. After stopping for a while and starting the car it worked. Brought it to a Chevy dealer and they said the steering column needed to be replaced to the tune of $650. After researching this problem I discovered hundreds of Malibu owners with the same issue. An obvious design and engineering flaw from GM. I can't understand that this has not been a recall item due to the number of complaints.

- Shawano, WI, USA

problem #68

Feb 012010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 101,096 miles
I have a 2004 Chevrolet- Malibu maxx lt. The power steering kept on going out with out warning. First time it did it, it almost caused an accident. I pulled over. I shut off the car and turned it back on. I was thinking maybe it was just a one time problem. It didn't happen again for 2 weeks. Then the second time happened. It was without warning as well. So, I did the same as before shut it down and restarted it. It worked for a minute. Right when I was getting ready to drive it did it again. So, shut it off then turned it on. It happened about 5 times in one day. So, I took it to a drive train place since I was told that my power steering was in my transmission. They said that it was my power steering and told me how its not like it was before. That my power steering was in my steering column. So, it quit doing it for about a month and then all of a sudden I couldn't even get it reset when I was shutting it off and back on. So, I took it to a place I always go and they looked at it and knew the exact problem. I spent $643.65 getting it fixed. They told me to look online and see if there are other complaints. Here are a few sites www.carcomplaints.com/Chevrolet/Malibu/2004/steering/power_steering_going_out_intermittently.shtml, carblog.classifieds1000.com/recall_issues/20090114-133923-power_steering_problems_on_chevy_malibu_seeking_recall, www.carcomplaints.com/Chevrolet/Malibu/2004/investigations.shtml there are so many complaints about this problem that it needs to be corrected before it takes someones life.

- Gillette, WY, USA

problem #67

Jul 242010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
2004 Chevy Malibu maxx 60000 miles- power steering failure while driving. Dealer had replaced the steering column twice already as well as the steering rack twice. Car is now out of warranty and steering froze up again and almost caused major accident. Dealer says its $700 to repair.

- Ansonia, CT, USA

problem #66

Jul 142009

Malibu Maxx

  • 83,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu maxx. The contact stated the power steering would intermittently fail when driving at 60 mph or less. The vehicle was taken to a local repair facility where he was informed the power steering motor would need to be replaced. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure mileage was 83,000 and the current mileage was 93,000.

- Bonneterre, MO, USA

problem #65

Jun 162010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
2004 Chevrolet Malibu steering:electric power suddenly lost all electric power steering assistance without warning making the vehicle difficult to steer. There is no allege to this issue it happens without warning. This is unacceptable. Does someone have to die before this is addressed? I am hoping it is not my daughter.

- Harold, KY, USA

problem #64

Mar 082010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
Chevy Malibu maxx 04 steering catches in hard left or right turns with shifting and grating sounds. Complain since new with steering shaft replaced (about 40,000) and other work. Numerous complaints about this issue. Car has 90,0000 now and the noise and steering issues have been getting worse. Dealer says about $300 to replace with no guarantee that it will fix the problem. I feel it is a safety issue and am afraid to drive the car.

- Canonsburg, PA, USA

problem #63

Apr 082010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 94,350 miles
We have a Chevy Malibu maxx, we have had numerous problems with the steering on this vehicle. I know the car has electronic steering and this is what I, M worried about. When driving the vehicle on the highway or in town the power steering sometimes goes out and other times it seems like you lose control of the steering all together.the steering also becomes very tight and then very fast it becomes very loose almost causing the driver to loose control. A few days ago on the highway the steering wheel became very loose and began pulling from side to side for many miles, we had to pull over and turn off the vehicle. This did not help the steering problem any.the car would also start pulling from one side to the other on its own. When I would try to correct the steering in the opposite direction it would then pull to the opposite direction almost causing the vehicle to wreck. Even when going at low speeds the vehicles steering is becoming a real problem. It feels like you are about to lose control at any minute. I have read that many others are having the same problem that we are and that worries me very much, because we have two small children who ride in this vehicle often. Is this issue something that Chevy is looking into or will it take a couple of accidents or even a death for them to recall this car for repairs. I hope you will take this matter very seriously before something very deadly happens. It is a very dangerous mechanical issue that Chevy desperately needs to take a look at.

- Beeville, TX, USA

problem #62

Feb 232010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 27,000 miles
I have a 2004 Chevy Malibu maxx, on seven times now the power steering goes out (inoperative with a chime and amber light) this has only happened below 15 miles an hour and while in a sharp turn. The car becomes very difficult to turn especially for my wife and impossible for my daughter. Chevy could not find any faults, I had the shop replace the electric motor at a cost of $700 and two weeks later it happened again. I now any having the steering column with a sensor replaced for another $600. Again Chevy refuses to help. They have a service bulletin about this exact scenario but still they refuse. There have been many complaints that I have found on the internet.

- Oviedo, FL, USA

problem #61

Mar 212010

Malibu Maxx

  • 48,000 miles
Most recent incident was Sunday March 21. Noticed the steering problem for the first time about 2 weeks ago, but the double click sound has been going on for about 5 months. While turning left from a stop light the steering stopped working. I started from a stop, accelerated thru the intersection turning left. About halfway thru the turn my steering wheel tried to go back straight. It nearly jerked the wheel out of my hands. I took my foot off the gas and a second later the steering came back. I have since been able to reproduce the effect several times. I also noticed that it is accompanied by a double "click" sound coming from somewhere under the steering column, and is usually accompanied by a bing bing and either/or the battery light and the car with a wrench light. This also occurs when accelerating up hill on the freeway.

- La Mesa, CA, USA

problem #60

Feb 252010

Malibu Maxx 6-cyl

  • 150,992 miles
While traveling on route 128 in wellesley, MA at a steady unacceleration speed of 65 mph, I experienced a near total loss of steering control, accompanied by an annunciator light on the odometer display, a repeating bell sound, and a "power steering" message displayed on the radio. With great effort I was able to control the vehicle. It is my opinion that had my girl friend or an elderly person been driving that the outcome could have been a fatal one. Using significant strength I was able to steer to a safe area. I reviewed the owner's manual which advised going to the dealer. After about 12 minutes, I started the vehicle and everything appeared normal. I then drove to the dealer (banks Chevrolet in concord, nh) from whom I purchased the vehicle and recounted the experience to them. They were very responsive and assigned a technician to obtain the (obd-II) error codes, if any had been recorded. The readout obtained was code 545, which they researched and, although it did pertain to the power steering, it referred to an "intermittent" loss of power steering assist, not a full and continuous loss. Since it was nearing closing time, an appointment was made for the following Thursday, 3/4/10. On that date, the banks technician (jim wathen) researched the issue further and made some electrical adjustments. The vehicle has performed normally since. I am reporting this heart-stopping event because I believe that a vehicle should have a fail-safe steering system. I hold an airline Transport Pilot certificate and a lot of our training, both in airplanes and helicopters, is dedicated to the proper response to a total failure in the hydraulic system. This event required more strength than any I have experienced in aviation and decidedly could have been fatal, especially if the road conditions were slippery or the roadway itself twisty (as in the mountains). A hard turn to either the left of the right just could not have been made.

- Lincoln, NH, USA

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