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2008 Impala SS thumping and clicking when in park or brakes engaged!

Hello everyone!
I’m a noob to the community and cars in general. I have the above mentioned car with 50876 miles. I noticed that the steering wheel causes a click in the suspension when turned left or right whether stationary or with the brakes engaged. Also I noticed a thump felt through the steering wheel while doing the same action. I have no idea what could be causing it, I checked my power steering pump and the fluid is brownish-red in color and no leaks are visible either on the ground or around the pump. I also got under the car and there seems to be no leaky CV boots ( i had to look these up to know what they look like).
I would really appreciate any help I can get with this issue as my wife and newborn baby ride with me sometimes in the car and I don’t want to break down or God forbid crash with them on board.

Thank You

It’s Difficult To Be Sure From Here, But It Sounds Like You’re Describing A Binding Intermediate Steering Shaft.

This shaft is a short bar with a sliding section and universal joints on each end. It basically connects the steering wheel to the car’s steering rack & pinion assembly to transfer the driver’s steering desire to the front wheels.

Some take the shaft out and relube it, but the real fix is to take it out and replace it. Don’t quote me, but I think your car takes part # 25913681. You can call a dealer parts department to verify and get a price. Labor shouldn’t be too bad, I’m guessing 1/2 to an hour, but they can tell you that, too. Any good service writer can assess the car in the parking lot.

It shouldn’t be dangerous, rather an annoyance. (The sliding part that is lubed starts sticking and releasing suddenly, but everything’s still bolted solidly in place). Make sure that’s what it is first and get it done.


I would just like to add to the safety aspect of this intermediate shaft, the sliding mechanism in this intermediate shaft is substantial and will not have issues with shearing or anything like that. It is just an annoyance felt in the steering wheel.

thank you both for the replies. just had a baby and we barely have time for ourselves anymore, one more question, would it make sense that the P/S pump whine due to this issue? the reason I’m asking is that i noticed that the pump starts to whine after a 30 minute drive…is that a sure sign that the pump is going? or is that related to the steering intermediate shaft?

Thank you and have a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

I Don’t Think It’s Related To The Shaft.
Try The Cheapest, Easiest Approach, First. GM Pulished A Technical Service Bulletin For Their Technicians Covering Several Models And Model-Years, Including Your 08 Impala That Describes Bleeding The Steering System To Cure Whine/Growl Noises.

I’d have it looked at first and then bled according to the procedures outlined in the TSB if your mechanic thinks that will cure it.


Here’s another link for the intermediate shaft Clunk Felt/Noise Heard bulletin:
(You’ll need to scroll half way down to the 01-02-32-001O TSB)

You will need to have the car checked out to be sure that these problems have been identified correctly and that there isn’t something else going on, here. These are my best guesses without being able to see or hear the car. I’m not telling you that we have identified exactly what your problems are. You’ll rest better after having it checked.


@BigRedImp, from the clunking symptoms you describe, I believe you DO need an intermediate steering shaft.

Check out this bulletin. It’ s essentially what commonsenseanswer posted, but the format is a little easier to read and there’s no other stuff to sift through.

I’m not making any speculations about the whining.

As a fleet mechanic I work on a lot of GM vehicles, and several of them have clunking noises from the steering column. Those noises are usually caused by the intermediate steering shaft, and also go away when that component is replaced.

So I’m writing based on personal experience and what I could find on the web . . .