Question about 2005 Chevrolet Impala

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Rear end unstable when weight is shifted to passenger side

I have a 2005 Chevy Impala V-6 w/ 69K miles on it. I'm not sure if the problem is in the stabilizer, sway bar, or something else. There are 3 things that I notice that may help diagnose what the bad part is.
1. When my 2005 Chevy Impala is sitting in the garage on a level surface, the rear end of the car looks to be sagging on the passenger side (passenger side is lower than the drivers side).

2. When sitting at a 4 way stop sign and then begin to take a turn, I can here a "pop" or thump. I can't tell where its coming from.

3. When travelling at 40+ mph and taking curves to the left (left handed curves), it feels like the drivers side tires are going to come off the ground and I'm going to lose control of the vehicle. It's always when the weight of the car is shifted to the passenger side of the car when it feels unstable. When making right handed curves everything is solid and feels ok. When the ground is wet or is covered w/ snow, this situation feels worse. It feels difficult to control and feels like it could go out of control at any time.
I had an issue last winter driving on a snow packed straightaway highway. I was in the right lane going about 50mph when a large salt truck passed me. The wind pressure from the truck pushed against the drivers side of the car and we began doing 360's in the middle of the highway. I can feel a similar effect when driving over gravel...it feels as if the back end is going to go out of control. This only feels dangerous when the weight of the car shifts to the passenger side in all the above examples. Its scary driving it when wet, snowy, or on gravel. What could the problem be? Thanks!

Bryan

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  • Bryan Oct 08, 2009

    Anyone else have any thoughts or ideas what this problem may be?

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  • Chevrolet Master
  • 6,982 Answers

You are going to have to get under there and give everything as good look. Check all bushings for wear and looseness, check springs to make sure they aren't broken and check struts for leakage. Struts are gas-charged and if one has leaked out usually there will be residual oil at the top where the shaft goes in. When checking suspension, check with wheels supported (on ramps) and check free (jack under chassis, wheels and axle hanging) Don't just look...try to move stuff to see if there is any play there.
Personally, I wouldn't drive it 'till it's fixed. In an emergency situation you will loose control if the back end isn't tracking correctly!

Posted on Oct 06, 2009

Testimonial: "very helpful..thanks"

  • Richard Scordino Oct 08, 2009

    Ok, from your latest post, I gather that you looked and found nothing?
    Two possibilities exist: first, you looked and missed something, in which case if you can't find the problem I recommend that you have a good shop look it over (you can still save $ if you only have them look and do the actual work yourself) Take the car to a real shop, with experienced people...not peppy boys or anything similar.
    Second, your car may have been in an accident... If the front and rear aren't tracking properly this can cause all kinds of problems. You can have an alignment shop check that. If true, I would not even sell it...it is dangerous if driven in its present condition.
    I hope you take this seriously...I'd be much happier if you could not start the engine...Hard to get in an accident when you can't drive it!!!!


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