front noise when going over bumps or potholes


Asked by Mar 26, 2015 at 06:36 PM about the 2009 Chevrolet Malibu LT

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a chevy malibu 2009 lt.  when on smooth roads the ride is fine but when I go
over bumps and pot holes in the road. There is a thump, rattle sound from the front.
The front end of the car is lower than the back. the vehicle has not been lowered and
have same tire and rims all around. when I try to push down the front to see if it
bounce it does not move.......can you help. is the shock or strut bad and what is
causing the noise. mileage is 81000  from Bob

9 Answers


You will most likely find that your front struts are shot. If you look in the fender wells you may see oil running down the struts. They may be leaking.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

no oil runing down the struts.


That doesn't mean that they aren't bad. Push down really hard with your knee on the front bumper. Does the car go down really easy and kind of bounce back really mushy? If they are good you should hardly be able to collapse the struts by hand. It will immediately push back into place.


when I push down on the side finder it does not really moved. so do not know what to do..if to change the strut or shock observer

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

If you feel that the struts are good, look at your coil springs. You may have a broken one. Pop the hood and look where the struts bolt up through the inner fenders. Have any nuts fallen off? Also check your motor mounts and transmission mounts. You may have a broken mount. Jack up the front and get wheels off the ground. If you grab the tire and wiggle it left to right, do you notice any play? Put a crow bar under the base of the tire and lift it up and down. Do you find any play in the up and down motion?

Jivko Atanassov

Your springs may be broken , this would make the car sit lower. (without mods) and not moving when you press down the front.


On my 2009 the ball joint was bad causing it to rattle over bumps. But that would not cause the front to be lower, like you describe.


Strut mounts will cause this problem. You do not have to replace the entire strut to have them fixed. I had the problem a number of years ago with the rear struts on my '03 Malibu.


Sway bar links....for front rattle more likely. Rear bushings. I've done both on my 09....twice. 153k miles now.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

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