Steering Wheel Judder and Loud Knocking - Chevy Cobalt Forum / Cobalt Reviews / Cobalt SS / Cobalt Parts
Suspension/Wheels/Brakes/Tires Talk about Chevy Cobalt Suspension, Brakes, Wheels, and Tires here
Sponsored by:

LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-09-2014, 09:33 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 27
Steering Wheel Judder and Loud Knocking

Hi all.

Just picked up a cobalt today. Have been searching the forum for answers to my issue but nothing ive found really answers my query.
I have a horrid steering wheel shake and loud knocking from the drivers side wheel well when the brakes are applied. I know a warped brake disc can make the steering shake under braking but the fact it makes a loud noise has me concerned.
Actually feels like the caliper is gonna fly off!
I have checked to make sure caliper is actually ok but what else can I check?
Sorry if this is a usual boring q.
cobaltcraig is offline  
Sponsored Links
Old 03-09-2014, 10:06 PM

blu3_v1p3r's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ventura County, CA.
Posts: 922
My guess would be the rotors, but I'm not 100%

I'm just curious, you just bought this today? Did you test drive it? Did you know it had this issue before you bought it? Did you buy it from a dealer?

2009 Imperial Blue Metallic Cobalt SS/TC Sedan - "Stock":
2008 Victory Red HHR SS - Stock
2005 Chili Pepper Red Ion Redline - Stock
2007 Sunburst Orange Metallic LS Coupe - Sold
blu3_v1p3r is offline  
Old 03-10-2014, 11:32 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 27
I went and seen it on Saturday, drove it around car park. Then picked it up on sunday from private seller. Was told it had a wobble when braking at speed. It didn't cost me much so prepared for some maintenance. I just needed transport asap! Really like the car.
I might buy a cheap dial gauge to check for run out.
cobaltcraig is offline  
Old 03-10-2014, 12:30 PM
Super Moderator Premium Member

Coby7's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Magnetic Hill, New-Brunswick
Posts: 11,820
You will need to replace your rotors, turning them is pretty much useless cost wise.

Every minute spent angry is a happy minute lost for ever and ever!!!
Drives 2016 Cocoa Buick Encore 1.4L Turbo auto KL4CJDSB2GB652675
Drives 2016 Sunset Orange Trax LT1 1.4L Turbo auto 3GNCJPSB8GL142716

Never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly
Coby7 is offline  
Old 03-10-2014, 01:48 PM
Chevy Customer Service Premium MemberExpert
ChevyCustSvc's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Detroit, Michigan USA
Posts: 794
Hey Craig,

Sorry to hear you are having this concern with your recent purchase. I see you are going to tackle this repair on your own. If you would like, I can check your VIN to verify you do not have a special coverage or recall. Please do not hesitate to reach out via private message.

Erica Tiffany
Chevrolet Customer Care

Have you checked into Chevrolet Owner Center? You can maintain service history, check on warranty or recall information, and more. Visit!
ChevyCustSvc is offline  
Old 03-10-2014, 02:10 PM
Super Moderator
Staff Alumni
YourCobalt of the Month Winner

Blackbalts's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Burnsville, Minnesota
Posts: 5,481
Welcome. I would agree to start with the rotors.

05 Mitsubishi Evolution 8
05 Chevy Cobalt LS (RIP 7/13/2013)
99 Nissan Altima GXE (Daily)
99 Subaru Legacy (Daily)
07 Jeep Liberty Limited (No longer the tow truck for the balt )

If you have questions and I'm not on please PM, notifications go straight to my phone 24/7.

My Showoff
Join YC on FB
Syndicate of
Blackbalts is offline  
Old 03-10-2014, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 27
Hi. So its defo the rotors, and with further driving I have located the noise, its the steering column joint above the foot well. I can reach the joint and can feel play in the coupling, unless there's another joint beyond the bulk head, or maybe its the rack....
So changing rotors is quite easy, changing the column or whatever it is not so much I would think?
I will pm you ccs.

Last edited by cobaltcraig; 03-10-2014 at 06:59 PM.
cobaltcraig is offline  
Old 03-10-2014, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 27
i found this part whilst looking online
it has matching part number to the cobalt intermediate shaft, seems cheap enough.

also found 2 x disc and pad kit too at a very reasonable price.

Even if i do end up replacing non defective parts it'll be cheaper than a garage bill, and, i like getting my hands dirty...
cobaltcraig is offline  
Old 03-13-2014, 06:59 AM
Cobalt Specialist

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 1,145
For your steering problem is known as brake judder, basically your rotors are warped and/or glazed. If you really wanted to check on it, you would need to perform a lateral run out and it should not be .002" or greater on difference on sides. I would replace the rotors and pads to start off with and ensure when you get them to run a quick sandpaper down to prevent the shipping glaze that's on it.
For the right side sound by the wheel it can be wheel bearings giving out or missing a few. Could also be the pads are skipping the rotor as well. Hope this helps.

2009 Cobalt LS XFE U74
Mods: K&N Typhoon Intake, Option Cat-Back Exhaust, Cosmo Short shifter, Maxxim Ahead 17X7's, MPx shorty antenna, FE5 Strut/shocks, Tein S Techs, Moog endlinks, Moog spring seaters, ZZP shorty header, LSJ downpipe, LNF front grille
5t3alth is offline  
Old 03-13-2014, 11:29 AM
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: South Florida
Posts: 46
I did a pretty thorough write- up click here to view! on changing the rotors, pads, and caliper hardware . Including the part number for the rotor/pad combo I got from Rockauto for a low price. The intermediate shaft is a common problem with these cars since they are not serviceable, but you can tell for sure if you turn the steering wheel all the way to one side and apply the accelerator and the wheel doesnt straighten itself out.

Also, get the wheels balanced - if they are bent, they will make a lot of noise at speed, esp in combination with bad rotors. If you do, try to get the tech to use sticky weights or clip-ons on the outside of the rim. Some joker balanced mine with clip-on weights on the inner side and when the steering wheel is turned there is a loud BANG when the weight hits the lower strut mount.

Good luck, and welcome to "Throw parts at the Cobalt until the noise is gone!"

Last edited by alexxxx89; 03-13-2014 at 11:36 AM.
alexxxx89 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Thread Tools

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome