2004 Chevrolet Malibu Trunk Release Button

04-10-2008, 02:15 PM
I just bought a 2004 Malibu less that a month ago. A few days ago both the keychain, and the door release button stop working. It makes a clicking sound when pressing both, but the trunk won't open. However, it still work with the key by itself.
I've checked both fuse boxes, and nothing is preventing it from opening. I can't put my hands on it. The dealer wants to charge $90.00 just to look at it. The 30 days warranty is a powertrain warranty, and don't cover this problem. Any suggestions?

04-10-2008, 03:07 PM
sounds like it is trying to release- it is just out of adjustment- or needs oiled-- open the trunk and observe the release actuator- see if it is sluggish or binding- or corroded...........

04-12-2008, 05:57 AM
I had the same problem. This is what I found. The key fob and trunk release buttons only send out a short pulse no matter how long you hold them down. I found the trunk release relay was sluggish.

In your owners manual look on page 5-94. The trunk release relay is shown as relay #36. Mark that relay with a marker so that you do not get them mixed up and then, swap it with a similar relay on the panel. Just confirm that they are the same part number. With luck the relay now in the trunk position will have a quicker response time and your trunk will open.

If you don't have the owners manual on hand, open the trunk with the key and go to the fuse panel on the left hand side. Click the key fob trunk open button and feel with your hand which relay is clicking. That is relay #36.

04-14-2008, 08:59 PM
My daughter's 04 Malibu had the same problem - my husband just ordered the release actuator from the dealer - seems like it was about $60 - fixed the problem.

04-15-2008, 05:01 AM
The problem as I see it is that the electrical pulse from the trunk release button is too short so that any sluggishness in the mechanical system could also cause problems. So it could be the actuator or the relay. I presume that the electrical pulse length is determined by the Body Control Module. GM should look into making it longer.

05-17-2014, 03:39 PM
Thanks for the info. I had the same problem, where the trunk button made a click sound, and even moved the lock a little, but didn't release the trunk. Swapped the relay, and it has a louder click, and opens the trunk. Easy fix. :)

Add your comment to this topic!