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I have a 2005 Malibu LT 3.5L V6 that I bought new three years before I retired and that currently has 60,000 miles on the odometer. Now that I’m retired, this car only gets driven about 1000 miles a year. The front end started making a noise about a year ago that’s starting to irritate me, and if anyone has any ideas, I’d really appreciate hearing them!

Once in a while, I’ll hear a single “thunk” from the front end on the driver side that happens about halfway through making a right turn. It’s not especially loud, it happens just once, and I don’t feel anything in the steering wheel or brake pedal. It never happens when I make a left turn, and there’s never a noise from the passenger side.

I had the intermediate steering shaft replaced in 2007, so I don’t think that’s the problem. I’ve checked under the front end and don’t see anything obviously wrong. Please help if you can!
 

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2011 Malibu LTZ 3.6L V6 Red Jewel Tintcoat
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Was there any service done recently? If so, did the lug nuts get tightened fully?

Steering or suspension component is my first guess.

Can you have someone ride with you or stand on a corner while you're making a turn to see if they can detect anything?
 

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Was there any service done recently? If so, did the lug nuts get tightened fully?

Steering or suspension component is my first guess.

Can you have someone ride with you or stand on a corner while you're making a turn to see if they can detect anything?
The lug nuts are tight. Just had an oil change and coolant system service done last week at my local Chevy dealer, and I asked that the service tech check the front suspension. He didn't find anything from just a visual inspection, but I didn't ask that he drive the car because the noise only happens occasionally.
 

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Hi 2005LT....my 2006 has a similiar noise which I traced to the intermediate steering shaft which connects the steering wheel to the steering rack....with the steering wheel unlocked and placing my ear close to the steering column and wiggling the steering wheel (engine off) I can hear a slight "thunk thunk" noise (the shop tried to sell me an inner tie rod replacement for that noise lol)
 

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Hi 2005LT....my 2006 has a similiar noise which I traced to the intermediate steering shaft which connects the steering wheel to the steering rack....with the steering wheel unlocked and placing my ear close to the steering column and wiggling the steering wheel (engine off) I can hear a slight "thunk thunk" noise (the shop tried to sell me an inner tie rod replacement for that noise lol)
Thank you, keefer! I had ruled out the intermediate steering shaft since it had been replaced back in 2007 when I got a recall notice, but I think you're right. I've now read that the first shafts used for repair can also start making that same noise and have to be lubed. After I lubed mine really well, the noise has seemed to disappear.
 

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Hi 2005 LT..I hope that proves to solve the problem...lol...I somehow didn't notice you had the same problem back in 2007...if I had noticed I wouldn't have given the step by step instructions how I detected mine... All the best to you!
 

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Hi 2005 LT..I hope that proves to solve the problem...lol...I somehow didn't notice you had the same problem back in 2007...if I had noticed I wouldn't have given the step by step instructions how I detected mine... All the best to you!
Hi 2005 LT..I hope that proves to solve the problem...lol...I somehow didn't notice you had the same problem back in 2007...if I had noticed I wouldn't have given the step by step instructions how I detected mine... All the best to you!
And the same to you! I appreciate your help.
 
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