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fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
58,599 miles
Total Complaints:
16 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replaced steering shaft (8 reports)
  2. not sure (4 reports)
  3. lubricate the intermediate steering shaft (2 reports)
  4. borgeson steering shaft (1 reports)
  5. drop steering column and work it back and forth (1 reports)
2003 Chevrolet Tahoe steering problems

steering problem

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2003 Chevrolet Tahoe Owner Comments

problem #16

Sep 012004

Tahoe LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles


My husband and I bought this Tahoe in 2003 brand new. After about 15k miles, every time I hit a bump, it would sound like the dashboard or the whole front end was gonna fall apart!!! I took it in to the dealer, and they said that this was a known problem, and the steering shaft just needed to be greased about every 15k miles. SO, every time the sound came back, we took it to be greased. The last time we took it to be greased, the service manager said that the shaft was so worn, it was the worst he had ever seen, and he felt that it was very unsafe, so he replaced it with one that we wouldn't have to grease!!! As of today, my Tahoe has 118k miles and no steering noise!! YAY!!!

- , Amory, MS, USA

problem #15

Nov 012009

Tahoe V8 5.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 53,000 miles

i guess we all are in the same boat about the steering problem with the tahoe truks i;m in if we have to file a complaint.

- , Los Angeles, CA, US

problem #14

Jan 012010

Tahoe LT 5.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles

I have had this knocking sound foe about 3 years. I finally took it in January 2009 and they replaced the idler pulley and arms which cost roughly $350.00. A year has gone by and that same knocking sound is back but of course it's a different issue now they say I need to replace the shaft and bearings on the steering column which will now cost an add'l $350 to fix. I've noticed that apparently most of the older Chevy Tahoes have this steering column knocking why has there been no recall???? I don't mind spending the money if was an isolated incident but reading the complaints its obviously not.


problem #13

May 202009

Tahoe LS 4.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles


Chevy knows it has this problem why can't they send a letter to me and fix it. I don't plan to buy another Chevy because this is the second time they had a minor problem and came up with a excuse why they will not fix it. They have a good vehicle, and spend a fortune trying to sell more Chevy's. They could keep their Customers if thy would just do the right thing. Im sure Ford appreciates your lack of customer respect!!!

- , Prosper, TX, Pacific Islands (US)

problem #12

Oct 072006

(reported on)

Tahoe LT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles

I own a 2003 Chevy Tahoe that has the intermediate shaft steering problem every 4 months or 3,000 miles. The dealer has replaced the shaft three times under warranty. The shafts have also been lubed several times. The only way to tighten up the knocking and vibration is to lube the shaft at the dealer or do it yourself if you are mechanically inclined. I spoke to GM customer service since the vehicle is now out of warranty and they are sending me a free coupon to have it lubed again. GM claims they are working on a new intermediate shaft to replace the faulty design. Oh well I thought FORDs drove bad. The lube job costs $70.00 at my dealer.

- , Port Arthur, TX, USA

problem #11

Nov 082006

Tahoe LT 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

me to i bought this truck with 100 thousand miles, at Provo Utah it was noticeable when i bought but with time it just got worse and worse now its just like every body says it sounds like the truck is going to break in half. please add me to the list

- , North Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #10

Oct 152008

(reported on)

Tahoe V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


I too have the knocking type sound on my 2003 Tahoe. It sounds like the entire bottom of the vehicle is going to drop at any time!!! If there is a class action in the works, where do I sign up??!!!

- , Holland, MI, USA

problem #9

Mar 012008

Tahoe LT 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,580 miles

I recently purchased this Tahoe as a used vehicle from Bob Pion Pontiac GMC in Chicopee, MA. After driving it for a few days I noticed the clunking, noise in the steering column. Seemed to be the worst when turning or hitting bumps. Especially hitting a bump on a rotary or highway off ramp. I called the dealership and brought it in. The service manager was familiar with the complaint and scheduled it in for repair. Joe told me that they wouldn't charge me for it because it was a none problem that GM didn't recall or warranty.

Hats off to Bob Pion for taking care of it. Haven't heard it since and I now have 87,000 miles on it. Had 79,000 in March of 08.

- , Chicopee, MA, USA

problem #8

Mar 052008

Tahoe Z71 5.3L Flex

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles

I too had the knocking problem and I just wanted to let people know a little more about what causes the problem. It is not a safety problem what is happening is that inside your steering column the steering shaft runs down to the gear box. There is grease inside the column that keeps the shaft from slapping around inside the column. The grease is running down to the bottom of the steering column and settling there so now the shaft can slap around in the column. All you have to do is drop the column and work in and out for a little bit redistribute the grease and just do that every time it starts to do that. Yeah it's annoying but thats all no safety problems and if that is the only problem I have with my car I'll take it.

- , Clearfield, UT, US

problem #7

May 012008

Tahoe LT 5.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

Borgeson steering shaft made for our Tahoe's will fix the "unsafe sound". I've also heard gm has a non grease shaft replacement.

- , Canton, GA, USA

problem #6

May 072008

(reported on)

Tahoe LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles


Just thought I would google to see if there was any recall info on this bumping sound and unstable feel in my steering, as I have lived with it for quite some time, but thought that replacing my old shocks would take care of the problem; guess I was wrong. Sounds like I was the only one not to know this has been a problem for a long time....Please include me too if someone gets through to the big shots at Chevy. This was my 4th Tahoe, but most likely will be my last. I think I'll move on to Toyota next time.

- , Monrovia, CA, USA

problem #5

Jan 102007

Tahoe LS V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles

This is the second Tahoe with the same steering problem. I owned a 2001 that did the same thing as this 2003. Everytime I turn the vehicle, and most of the time when I hit a bump, a loud pop can be heard. It doesn't sound safe. The dealership said there was a recall on the 2003 but only while it was under warranty and the steering column will cost $150 plus labor and taxes now. The service manager says it is not a safety issue, but I'm not convinced, especially since was just recently hired and has very little experience. From what I've read here, replacing it won't do any good except for a few thousand miles. Count me in if anyone files a class action suit against Chevrolet.

- , Clarksville, TX, USA

problem #4

Nov 052007

(reported on)

Tahoe 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,000 miles

From what i have been told there is a known problem but Chevrolet refuses to offer the part or repair under warranty or repair period! the steering has a definite annoying popping and sounds like steering is going to just come right apart when steering to left or right at first i thought it was in the tyerods but i took to a mechanic and that is when he told me about the deal with Chevrolet's not fixing the known problem, so here we are today complaining. It will definitely cause a problem with resale if not fixed. I'm OVER IT. wanna start a sheet of complaints to give to Chevrolet. Email me.

- , Fort Myers, FL, USA

problem #3

Dec 272006

(reported on)

Tahoe LS 4.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,000 miles

I started feeling a "popping" noise in the front end when driving over bumps or turning at about 16,000 miles. They replaced the steering shaft and the problem went away for awhile and then returned again at about 35,000 miles. The feeling is so bad I don't feel safe driving my children in it. It feels as if the front end is going to fall off, or that my steering column is going to break off. This is a serious problem, my dealership says that Chevrolet knows that there is a problem and they are not sure how to fix it. In the mean time hard working families are stuck with a very expensive SUV that they are afraid to drive...

- , Redmond, OR, USA

problem #2

Nov 212006

(reported on)

Tahoe LT V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,000 miles

Me and my Fiancee both purchased a 2003 Chevrolet Tahoe on December 2,2002.... brand new. This is the first new vehicle I have ever purchased as a new vehicle. My Tahoe started having problems with the steering around 24,000 miles..... took it back to the dealer... they lubed the steering, after 5,000 miles.... the problem came back... only worse. So we go back to the dealer..... they lube it yet again! We go to pick it up, and leave and it is still doing it. So we turn around and went straight back up there. Then they replaced the steering shaft... the problem went away for another 8,000 to 10,000 miles, and came back again! I sold my Tahoe... and we kept my fiancees. At 24,000 his Tahoe started doing the same as my white one had done. Took it to the dealer and they were going to LUBE it... I said NO WAY! Replace the shaft, and they said they did. After 8 to 10,000 miles... it came back. It is so bad... u can hear it no matter where u r... in or out of the vehicle. This is not safe. I am a single Mom with 2 children, their SAFETY should be a concern. I work at a Car Dealership now..... they just replaved the gear box... lubed the steering shaft again, and it is not fixed. The mechanic said it needs a sterring shaft and gaskets and bushings..... my EXTENDED WARRANTY (THANK GOODNESS) will cover some of it. but they WILL NOT approve of the steering shaft replacement because the STEERING SHAFT in the TAHOES is DEFECTIVE!!!!! They have NOT come out with ONE that works!!! WHAT THE?????????? This needs to be said, and people need to be aware of this! U can NOT FIX YOUR TAHOE!!!!! Not WITHIN the STEERING SHAFT!!!!! I will not STOP this now! I know of SEVERAL people who r having the SAME problem!!!! Someone needs to call Consumer Reports and Report this as well! I am going to them next!!!! Good Luck to everyone who BOUGHT a LEMON like we did! (well..... we bought not one.... but TWO!!!!)!!!

- , Timberlake, NC, USA

problem #1

Nov 132006

(reported on)

Tahoe LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

I had this problem when the vehicle had 28,000 miles on it and the Chevrolet dealership replaced it with a new shaft. The knocking that was felt through the steering column was so bad that I thought the front end was falling out from under the vehicle. The Tahoe now has 80,000 miles on it and the knocking is worse than ever. I would pay to have the problem fixed but i don't think Chevrolet has a solution for the problem. You see I also have a 2004 Chevrolet Silverado that has had the same problem twice. First time they replaced the inter. steering shaft and the problem came back within 10,000 miles, second time they use some special grease to resolve the problem. Come on "grease" is this the best that American automakers can do, and you wonder why foreign cars are selling better. All I can hope for is that they fired the designer of the steering system because it sucks. If anyone is interested in filing a class action lawsuit I would be willing to get on board.

- , Cypress, TX, US

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