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Neal, Chevy Mechanic
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 8351
Experience:  Shop Owner and Mechanic on multiple makes.
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2005 chevy malibu maxx: clunking..steering a common problem

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I have a clunking or thumping noise on the steering column of my 2005 chevy malibu maxx. I read online that this is a common problem with this mode. What is the fix and can it be done by my husband who is handy but not a mechanic? Thanks!

I'm Neal and I am here to assist you. Only accept when you are happy with my assistance. If I can't help I will open your Question to other experts.


It is really not bad and takes less than an hour. Here is the entire procedure, he can look and decide if he wants to do it.


Intermediate Steering Shaft Replacement

Removal Procedure

Important: The steering column lever MUST be in the LOCK (FULL UP) position before disconnecting the following components:

^ The steering column
^ The intermediate steering shaft

Important: The wheels on the vehicle must be straight ahead before disconnecting the steering column or intermediate shaft. Do NOT rotate the steering column after disconnecting the steering column or intermediate shaft. Doing so will cause the SIR coil assembly to become uncentered, which may cause damage to the coil assembly.

1. Raise and support the vehicle. Refer to Vehicle Lifting.
2. Remove the left front tire.

3. Remove the intermediate shaft to steering gear pinch bolt. Discard the bolt.
4. Disconnect the intermediate shaft from the steering gear.
5. Lower the vehicle.

6. Remove the intermediate shaft pinch bolt at the steering column shaft. Discard the pinch bolt.
7. Slide the intermediate shaft off the steering column shaft.

8. To unseat the intermediate shaft seal from the dash, squeeze the 4 tabs on the seal individually, then pull towards the inside of the vehicle.
9. Remove the intermediate shaft/seal from the vehicle.

Installation Procedure

1. Install the intermediate shaft/seal through the front of dash.

Important: To ensure seal is properly seated, inspect the 4 tabs on the seal from the engine side of the seal. Do NOT twist or squeeze the seal during installation.

2. Seat the intermediate shaft seal by pushing forward from the inside of the vehicle, until all four tabs of the seal are fully seated.
3. Connect the new intermediate shaft to the steering column shaft.

Notice: Refer to Fastener Notice in Service Precautions.

4. Install the new steering column pinch bolt to the intermediate shaft.
Tighten the bolt to 49 Nm (36 ft. lbs.).

5. Connect the intermediate shaft to the steering gear shaft.
6. Install the new steering gear pinch bolt to the intermediate shaft.
Tighten the bolt to 49 Nm (36 ft. lbs.).
7. Install the left front wheel.

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