2003 Chevrolet Malibu Trailing Arm For Rear Suspension

Tiny
TECLA22
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 CHEVROLET MALIBU
  • 3.1L
  • V6
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 130,000 MILES
Hi,

I recently purchased a rear Trailing Arm. According to the Dorman Products company, it is 15.4724" from the center of the bolt to the end of the arm. The problem is that my mechanic says that the Dorman arm is too short! A technician at that company, though, says that both their Trailing Arm and the genuine GM Trailing Arm is 15.4724". He sent images of both GM and Dorman arms to back up his claim. And Rockauto, from whom I purchased the Trailing Arm, claims that they sold this very same Dorman part number to someone else with a 2003 Chevrolet Malibu - and they had no problem with it!

The following, though, is a link to a website that sells "genuine" GM parts. I
wrote to them inquiring what is the correct length for a rear trailing
arm for a 2003 Chevrolet Malibu. Their answer was that it is about
18" if measured on the inner and about 19" if measured from outer.

The reply that I got from Dorman regarding this different measurement was that it depends on how they measured it.

http://www.gmpartscenter.net/chevrolet/malibu/22639909/2003-year/ls-trim/3-1l-v6-gas-engine/rear-suspension-cat/rear-suspension-scat/?part_name=trailing-arm

So I'll post this question here, but I think that I'll have to consult with another local mechanic as to whether this ARM is too short or not.

Question: Is there a special technique for the installation of rear trailing arms, such that if you don't follow the correct procedure, the replacement arm will appear to be TOO short???

The VIN Number of the vehicle is: 1G1NE52J63M569483.
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Tuesday, July 28th, 2015 AT 3:30 PM

5 Replies

Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
Looking at gm. Partsdirect. Com there are two different trailing arms they also list a 22639751 as well as the 2263909 but no lengths are given on them. If you received a 905-516 that is for the 22639751 and they have no listing for the 909 part number. I'd check with a dealer on this especially since they actually list a couple of these.
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Tuesday, July 28th, 2015 AT 4:04 PM
Tiny
TECLA22
  • MEMBER
I wrote to gmpartsdirectdotcom. It's for the passenger side. The other part number is for the driver's side. The 909 equates to Dorman's 905-517. I'll have to take the vehicle to another mechanic. But as I understand it, the installation of these rear trailing arms is not complicated. According to my original mechanic, one end attaches to the rim/tire structure and the other end attaches to a fixed (non-movable or adjustable) part of the undercarriage. How could a mechanic make a mistake in stating that the trailing arm that you've given him to install is too short?
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 AT 10:30 AM
Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
That is easy about being to short it's the wrong part. Like I said in my reply Dorman only lists for the one trailing arm and not others. You can call gm parts direct. Com as well unlessyou emailed them they will respond fairly quickly. They list 4 separate ones anyhow for that part. If you sent your vin it makes things a lot easier. Good luck
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 AT 12:21 PM
Tiny
TECLA22
  • MEMBER
Rockauto says that that these two links are for my VIN number:

1) Dorman part number - 905-516
http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/moreinfo.php?pk=3386142
2) Dorman part number - 905-517
http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/moreinfo.php?pk=3388095

The first link states that the alternative part number is GM #22639751, which is the number sold on gmpartsdirect.

The second link states that the alternative part number is GM # 22639909.

Both Arms were too short.

So do I conclude: Don't use Dorman Products in the future?
The trailing arms are stamped: Made In China. I'm guessing that what GM Parts Direct sells are also stamped: Made In China. Or am I mistaken?
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 AT 12:59 PM
Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
I can't tell you about the GM parts as so much stuff comes from china ireally don't know what to tell you on this all I know is I went to dorman's site and they had no arm for the 751 number maybe they do now. SEe what GMparts direct says as it may be something entirely different. When I went to the gm site there was a footnote attached which I could not get so I imagine they will say you have to use this or that.
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Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 AT 1:10 PM

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