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Old 10-08-2004, 04:35 PM   #1
afav868
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Default Electric Power Steering

Has anyone heard of consistant problems with the Electric Power steering on the ION?? I work for a company that has leased a fleet of 04 Chevy Malibus and they have all been taken out of service until repairs can be made to the EPS systems. There have been a handfull of failures while they have been on the road. Could be a problem specific to the Malibu but I thought I would ask anyway.
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Old 10-08-2004, 04:45 PM   #2
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I haven't had any real problems with mine. There was one time I figure I got it confused making a quick slalem type turn and it got a little tight at the peaks of the turn when I began to turn back. I have also heard a snapping type sound maybe a plastic gear slipping or something but it could also be weight transfer (me or the car) flexing the dash and making the noise. What were the problems you have seen?
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Old 10-08-2004, 06:34 PM   #3
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I have heard about them locking up and you can't turn the wheel. I have had no problems with either of mine. It seems to turn real easy and nice to me.
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Old 10-08-2004, 09:25 PM   #4
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unless the ignition is off with key removed it will not lock up what i have seen is the eps unit blowing the eps fuse and causing a very hard to turn wheel but not undrivable. if the fuse blos the eps unit has an internal short and needs replacement.
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Old 10-09-2004, 08:18 AM   #5
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I have spent a lot of time on this issue. See my older posts on the subject.

The '03's have a EPS calibration issue that causes poor on center feel, especially with the factory tires. '04's are better. I have heard '05's are better still.

Spring Hill knows there is a problem but resfuses to provide an calibration upgrade to the older units.

I "fixed" my '03 by going to Dunlop SP5000's which significantly reduce the poor feel issue. However, there are still moments where you can still feel the problem, especially on long straight stretches of road with a slight cross wind.

As for the Malibu, it uses a system designed by Delphi, whereas the Saturn is made by Koyo so I do not believe there is any connection between problems in the two EPS systems.
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Old 10-09-2004, 10:03 AM   #6
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As for the Malibu, it uses a system designed by Delphi, whereas the Saturn is made by Koyo so I do not believe there is any connection between problems in the two EPS systems. [/B][/QUOTE]

That's great, thanks for all the input everyone
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Old 02-14-2005, 05:17 PM   #7
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

I'm having steering issues. If anyone has any more current detail, I'd be interested. I have an '03 Ion2.
Have lost total control of the car over 75 on thefreeway....
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Old 02-14-2005, 05:53 PM   #8
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

What does "Lost total control" mean?
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Old 02-14-2005, 06:17 PM   #9
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

I haven't had a single complaint about the steering system in our 03 Ion sedan... I have heard of some issues with lock cylinders failing causing the steering wheel to lock with the key in the ignition, but that has nothing to do with the EPS as far as I know.
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Old 02-16-2005, 02:59 PM   #10
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

I definitely notice some issues with the EPS on my '04 Ion2 (special edition sports package - 16" GTAs). When driving at high speeds, the steering wheel literally turns 45 degrees when going over "road buckles." For those of you that don't know what this is, think "mini speed bump." When driving during windy conditions, it feels down-right dangerous to drive my car and I have to use 2 hands to keep control. I just don't know if this is an effect of driving a smaller, lighter car (my last and only one was a Caddy Deville).

These issues aren't exactly major, but it is the ONLY complaint i have about the feel of my car.
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Old 02-17-2005, 09:55 AM   #11
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

I had a similar experience this past weekend. I would say it's more a function of driving a smaller, lighter car. I haven't really driven a small car for a few years so it's something I'll have to get used to.

My VUE has the exact same steering system and doesn't behave like that on the highway. But then again it's almost 1000 pounds heavier!
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Old 02-17-2005, 01:31 PM   #12
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

During the wind it's because you have a tall car that only weighs 2600lbs. Think sailboat.
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Old 02-17-2005, 01:34 PM   #13
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

I understand that a smaller car is prone to getting tossed around. But is the steering wheel supposed to turn as well? It just feels like the EPS senses inconsistencies in road conditions (windy or crap roads), and over-compensates.

P.S. Bob, do you ever drive on the B-W parkway? That highway is the best example of EPS over-compensating for road hazards. While traveling north, about 2 miles before baltimore, there's a pretty sharp curve (about 90 degrees). At the apex is a buckle in the road. So while driving at about 70mph or so and already having the wheel cocked about 45 degrees for the curve, the wheel suddenly jerks another 45 degrees. Is this supposed to happen in all small cars? It NEVER happened in my Caddy.
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Old 02-17-2005, 02:03 PM   #14
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Default Re: Electric Power Steering

I've been on it a few times, but generally around college park near Goddard, I don't get up to baltimore that much, and when I have to, I usually take the state's jokingly pathetic attempt at public transportation.
Are you still running the factory firestones. I haven't had problems as bad as what you're describing, but I also replaced those tires with a set of Yokohamas.
I don't think the EPS is compensating for road irregularities, just that the steering rack transmits any defects to the steering wheel. Conventional hydraulic power steering might limit this, as there might be resistence from the pump the whole time you're driving.
I also don't normally drive with only one hand on the wheel, that might be why I don't notice the effect. We could always meet up, and each do this turn in our cars, and see what happens.
BTW, did you go to the Motortrend IAS last weekend at the baltimore convention center?
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