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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All!

I've been searching for solutions on google for the better part of two weeks and every search brings me to this forum, so I might as well join it!

I've been fortunate enough to revive my 2013 Chevy Malibu 2.5 from hurricane "Ida" floods. Got all the water out of the throttle body (cleaned the carbon deposits off of it), spark plug cylinders, MAF, replaced the air filter & spark plugs.

The engine purrs like a kitten when it chooses not to shut down at idle, and this is causing me much grief.

Thanks to this forum I will try my hand at getting new ACdelco variable valve timing solenoid (VVT). Hope that ends the stalling.

Keep you all posted.
 

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replace both intake and exhaust...get your OEM parts from Rock Auto (genuine and cheapest) and should take you under 30 minutes to change them...

hope it helps...nice job getting yours up and running

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Follow up - Inspected the front VVT and noticed the harness wire to the engine exhibited severe lacerations, who knows how that could've happened but I repaired it by wrapping the exposed wires with wiring, heat shrink tubing, and heat resistant / thermal tape. After driving it hard, trying to induce stalling conditions, the car did not stall. So, problem solved.

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Now, I'm trying to figure out why are the fans constantly running:

It all started when the temperature, the "AC" shut off message appeared and had the fans running full blast at all times. Somehow, after finding out that's a sign of a bad temperature sensor, I got in there and pull the sensor out. I noticed the sensor was badly cracked almost disintegrated; I've never seen anything like it! Got the new sensor and the AC message was gone but the fan running was still happening - though not at full blast. So, went down the DIY rabbit hole and replaced the thermostat & radiator sensor. Fan still runs constantly! I doubt is the water pump because there is zero grinding or strange noise coming from it. I am, however, leaning towards doing a radiator flush. I will keep updating.
 

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With a/c on fan will always run. That's normal. Turn off the a/c and see if it stops after a few minutes.
Possible that one of the fan relays is bad if fan runs with a/c off and a cold motor. Anything is possible after being in a flood, that's why most Ins. Co. total flood cars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hey! Thanks for the reply Repairman54 -

That problem was there weeks before the flood, sorry for not making it clear.

I tested the relays, fuses, & fans - Yes, they are doing all what they are supposed to do except shut off after the engine is off.

The engine, prior to the flood, was running hotter than normal. Lets see what happens after the flush.

Will inform
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I completed the radiator flush and the anti-freeze was not as filthy as I expected, in fact it wasn't the least murky. Nevertheless, I did the deed and rinsed it twice, the second time the water was significantly clearer.

After running the engine as hot as possible with full blast heat, on a hot day, running fast & slow, U-turns and reverses, red lights & yellow lights; I am convinced that: 1) the engine is not going to overheat. 2) Normal operating temperature for MY 2013 Malibu 2.5 LS oscillates between 208 - 240F 3) the fans come on & stay on, and slow down as needed, seems to be normal operation.

Having said that, I noticed something I never did before, the thermostat sends out a signal to the ECM that tells it, in terms of percent, how open it is. The reading I saw was 66% and nothing above that - strange, then again at the time of that reading the engine temp was around 215F. I wonder if there are other thermostats for this car that open wider at much lower temperatures?

I removed the radiator temperature sensor a few days ago and noticed it was a bit mucky, it had a light sheen and at the time it was reading temperatures no higher than 100F. After wiping the muckiness off, it read temps at least 20 degrees higher, usually with a 100 degree difference between the radiator sensor & engine temp sensor.

The car is not throwing any codes, is not stalling, now gotta get the wife to trusts it. She drove to Costco, bought some turkey wraps, she claimed it almost stalled but she is not sure because she threw it on neutral. So, we will just have to wait and see.

Hope this helps, wish me luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This just in - went for a drive to test a hunch and it proved to be true. However, I am not sure if correlation equals causation. Drove around with the OBDII scaner plugged to get some live readings. The temperatures read 228F off the engine, 108F off the radiator, and the thermostat read .38%. Folks, not even 1%!!!

Like I said on the previous post, I saw a 66% reading all while the ECT was reading 215F, in fact it was being lowered from a higher temp. It remains unclear if all of that is related, but if it is, the culprit for my always running fans COULD BE, after everything is said and done, an inadequate thermostat.

I'll investigate some more and keep updating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hi All following this thread.

Here's are latest, I have not replaced the intake & exhaust VVTs, the car stalls once per drive cycle, so I plan to replace both soon.

My main concern however remains the constant running of the fans, a condition that was present from before the flooding.

As I've documented before, I replaced the temp sensors, flushed the radiator, and replaced the thermostat; so I am not clear on what could be. The following details, however, are puzzling: The ECT reports oscillating temps that reach as high as 237f, yet the radiator doesn't go beyond 125F. Why? Because the fan is running & the thermostat remains .39% active (open). But once the radiator temperature reaches 160 - 175F, the thermostat somehow decides to be 99% active (open), the ECT drops to 195F and the fans shut down. The thermostat remains 50%-66% open for a while there after. It is a really strange sequence of events, yet basing this on what the previous post says - it is perfectly normal; but is it?

Isn't the on & off sequence between thermostat & radiator fans supposed to be, 1) Engine coolant gets hot, 2) thermostat opens & closes, 3) and should radiator coolant be too hot the fans then come on?

Maybe when I order the VVT & order some relays too, maybe they stick turning the fans on? We'll see.

Stay tuned.
 

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The ECT sends data to the BCM. If there's any kind of interference, it could modify the value that reaches the BCM, which then reacts as if it's a good signal.
 
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