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2007 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 3.5 liter auto transmission
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
My 07 LTZ 3.5 V6 tends to always run hot.
I installed an OEM GM 185° thermostat, fans seem to be running properly, and antifreeze is new, but the temp gets up to 220° during city driving. Highway driving it runs around 200°
Is that normal with a 185° thermostat?
I really like this car and don't want to warp my heads.
The car is quick, and comfortable, and gets good gas mileage considering it's a V6 3.5 liter.
My only complaint is the cosmetics, and switches are cheaply made and seen to be manufactured at a lower quality.
I have had to replace power window switches, the cruise control on/off button works randomly, have replaced the door lock rocker twice, and the same with the power mirror control switches...sometimes they work, and other times they don't. I realize that it's only the switches themselves that are the issue, but just seems strange that nearly every rocker switch and button wears out so quickly. There is only 80k miles on the car
Thank you in advance.
 

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Hello there! Wow only 80k miles on the car, did Miss Daisy own it before you? I'm the only owner of my 07 LTZ and I've put 150k on it.
The only times I can remember having high temperatures is when I have been low on coolant. Even with the AC on, the needle should only get slightly above the middle mark. Idk what the actual temp readings are.

I did have a problem a few years ago with the driver window controller. I couldn't operate any of the windows and it made a strange buzzing sound when I tried. I never figured out exactly what the problem was but it was in the wire bundle for the drivers door. I tried taking the rubber apart to inspect where the wires go from the door into the body and the problem went away. However, I could never get the rubber grommet back into the main body correctly.
Your right about the quality of the paint on the switches, it's crap. I ended up replacing everything on the steering column for various reasons. The leather on the steering wheel was gross because I didn't take good care of it, the radio and cruise switches were worn out, turn signal switch was broken, and I have an airbag problem so I replaced the clock spring hoping that would fix it. (It did not)
I still haven't figured out what the hell is wrong with my airbag system.
I did have a very strange seemingly electrical problem that was very random. The car would struggle to start, and when it did I wouldn't have a temp reading. Going off a tip I read here I removed the throttle body, cleaned it up and never had that problem since.
Of course I've had many other things fixed and replaced over the years. I replaced the struts, shocks, sway bar links 2 years ago. Had a shop replace both valve cover and exhaust gaskets last year. Same shop replaced front control arms couple weeks ago but didn't tighten all bolts down so I won't be going there again. Yesterday I replaced front sway bar bushings, no more loud popping sounds!
Right now I'm debating on what to do about a bad oil leak under the car. I think it's the oil pan gasket. 2 shops told me the exhaust has to be dropped to fix it putting the job at 1400 to 1700 bucks. The oil leak is bad but not that bad. This is one job that idk if I really wanna try myself or not.
I hope my ranting was informative!
Jed
 

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If you look closely at the window rocker switches, you will see they can be taken apart and the contacts cleaned with an eraser. Could save some money. Not sure about the other rocker switches in the arm rest but they are probably the same.
 

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2011 Malibu LTZ 3.6L V6 Red Jewel Tintcoat
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20,462 Posts
@TorpedoJed
Try plugging in the front passenger seatbelt to see if the SRS light goes out. If so, it's the seat switch called the passenger presence detection sensor switch thingy.
 

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2007 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 3.5 liter auto transmission
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hello there! Wow only 80k miles on the car, did Miss Daisy own it before you? I'm the only owner of my 07 LTZ and I've put 150k on it.
The only times I can remember having high temperatures is when I have been low on coolant. Even with the AC on, the needle should only get slightly above the middle mark. Idk what the actual temp readings are.

I did have a problem a few years ago with the driver window controller. I couldn't operate any of the windows and it made a strange buzzing sound when I tried. I never figured out exactly what the problem was but it was in the wire bundle for the drivers door. I tried taking the rubber apart to inspect where the wires go from the door into the body and the problem went away. However, I could never get the rubber grommet back into the main body correctly.
Your right about the quality of the paint on the switches, it's crap. I ended up replacing everything on the steering column for various reasons. The leather on the steering wheel was gross because I didn't take good care of it, the radio and cruise switches were worn out, turn signal switch was broken, and I have an airbag problem so I replaced the clock spring hoping that would fix it. (It did not)
I still haven't figured out what the hell is wrong with my airbag system.
I did have a very strange seemingly electrical problem that was very random. The car would struggle to start, and when it did I wouldn't have a temp reading. Going off a tip I read here I removed the throttle body, cleaned it up and never had that problem since.
Of course I've had many other things fixed and replaced over the years. I replaced the struts, shocks, sway bar links 2 years ago. Had a shop replace both valve cover and exhaust gaskets last year. Same shop replaced front control arms couple weeks ago but didn't tighten all bolts down so I won't be going there again. Yesterday I replaced front sway bar bushings, no more loud popping sounds!
Right now I'm debating on what to do about a bad oil leak under the car. I think it's the oil pan gasket. 2 shops told me the exhaust has to be dropped to fix it putting the job at 1400 to 1700 bucks. The oil leak is bad but not that bad. This is one job that idk if I really wanna try myself or not.
I hope my ranting was informative!
Jed
Hello Torpedo Jed,
No, not Miss Daisy, just Miss Paula, my wife🙂.
We bought the car when we were in an emergency situation, and needed a car quickly..... it was clean, low mileage, garaged every evening, and only had one owner who brought the car new from dealer, and the window sticker is still in the glove box!
I was surprisingly pleased with the ride, the handling, and the motors responsiveness when I test drove it. I was very impressed with how quickly the car picks up speed without straining the engine in the slightest. Being one who usually only buys rear wheel drive vehicles, I was also very surprised with the "feel" of the steering too. I think I was expecting that "pull" that nearly all vehicles experienced had in the early days when most full size cars were converting to front wheel drive. This was my first car with electric power steering.
I drove my rear wheel, V6, 1992 Ford Probe till everything started to rust to crap due to the salt on the roads up north. I think there was 230k miles when I got rid of the car, and without ever having to do any major repairs. So, I was still stuck on having some power, and rear wheel drive.
I always change my engine oil before 5000 miles, always 100% synthetic oil and higher quality oil filters. Been using High mileage WIX filters untill recently when they lowered the quality of the parts inside the filter. My last couple oil filters I used were Mobile one filters. And I change all other fluids when or before its really needed, and long before the suggested maintenance intervals. I usually change tranny fluid before 40k miles too. Most folks don't realize that dirty oils act as a fine abrasive and will shorten the life of all motors.
But the cosmetics, knobs and switches are all cheap, cheap, cheap low quality. GM is dropping the ball on those items.
But they did match the engine and transmission perfectly.
I think I fixed the issue with the car running hot, and all I did was clean up the 2, 4 post fan relays with some 000 steel wool. I think the 4 copper pins on the relays oxidized causing a poor connection. Now the fans run properly. Before cleaning up those contacts, the fans were only kicking in when the AC was on. It's not topping out at 215° when stuck in city traffic in the Florida heat. I'm just surprised because all other cars I've had usually ran just above the temperature of thermostat. The Malibu is running 30° above the thermostat....still not sure if that is the way it's supposed to be.
I am also very happy with the gas milage. On long highway trips I get 30 mpg with the AC on (lower with windows open). And in the city I average about 23 mpg. Not bad for a car of this size and comfort. I really like all the features that come with the LTZ model too, especially the automatic climate control. Once the car is cool inside, the compressor kicks on and off, unlike many other GM cars where the compressor runs as long as the AC or defrost is on. My S-10 compressor is like that. I actually installed a small toggle switch on the 5 speed shifter so I can flip off the compressor when accelerating, or when not needed.
So, all in all, I would buy another low mileage 5/6 series Malibu, it's been a great car.
 

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Glad it worked out! That's some great troubleshooting to find dirty contacts were causing your problem.
I had a 2000 S-10 but had to trade it in when I knocked up my wife. I'm hoping to get a 23 Colorado but may have to get wifey a new van instead.
I still have my Malibu window sticker as well.

@DrivenDaily
I've known the passenger presence sensor was a possibility, but I tried clicking in the passanger seatbelt and no joy. I have a used passenger seat in my garage I bought off ebay but I didn't know there was a change in seats during the refresh. Even though the leather matches this is a jumper without the side curtain airbag and I'm too worried about setting off the system to plug something that isn't an exact match.
 

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DeOxit is one of my garage supply shelf standby's. It's a electronic connection cleaner/lubricant. Spraying and a couple unplug/plug of a connector does wonders.
I spray it in any connector I have apart even if it's not acting up.
 

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2007 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 3.5 liter auto transmission
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4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the suggestion!! I will try your suggestion about DeOxit.
I'm one of those people who uses thread lockers red/blue/purple thread lockers. Purple is mainly for electrical connections.
Seems there is always enough time to re-do a repair, but it's always my goal to fix things correctly on the first attempt, even if it takes more time.
 

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DeOxit is one of my garage supply shelf standby's. It's a electronic connection cleaner/lubricant. Spraying and a couple unplug/plug of a connector does wonders.
I spray it in any connector I have apart even if it's not acting up.
I also use DeOxit on any electrical connxs...cars and computers. Also maybe some di-electric grease when exposed to weathering. DeOxit is expensive...but a can lasts a long time.

With a computer...unplug it. Make sure you ground yourself to the chassis. Be careful of "ganged" connections where it might look like a solid black but it's actually a bunch of small connectors...don't ask how I found this out. Had to get DEEP into the technicals to get it back together right.
 
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