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Chevrolet Suburban and Tahoe No Start problems



  • I have a 2000 tahoe when I go to start it it will crank over and wont start then I crank it over again and it might start , it never starts on the first crank 75% it will start on second crank 25% it starts on the third crank. what do I need to do to fix it I dont want it to get any worse?
  • arriearrie Posts: 312
    Sounds like it could be a fuel pressure issue. To test for this do the following next time you go start it after it has been sitting for a while. I'm thinking it will start right up if you start it immediately after you shut it off.

    When you start it next time when it normally would not start on the first try turn the key to ON position for 3-5 seconds and then to OFF position. Turn key to ON position again for 3 - 5 seconds and then OFF. Now turn key all the way to START position and see if it starts.

    Above procedure charges the fuel rail. When you first turn the key ON the fuel pump will start running but it stops after 2 - 3 seconds if engine does not start. Doing above key to ON position a couple of times will run the pump and should assure you have enough fuel pressure when you actually then start it on the third time.

    If your car really starts on the third time after two "charging" cycles with the key then your problem indeed seems to be fuel pressure issue.

    Fuel pressure issue can be caused by two things, the fuel pump going bad or fuel pressure regulator going bad. Third one could be clogged fuel filter but that should cause some other problems that just starting issues.

    Get your fuel pressure checked especially for the moment you are turning the key for the first time. You should see fuel pressure at normal running pressure above 45 psi. Pressure requirement in your car might be different but I think it should be something from 45 psi to 60 psi.

  • My 1996 Tahoe was having terrible problems starting and running correctly. The initial diagnosis was the crankshaft position switch was malfunctioning. After almost $2000 dollars of replacing the sensor, engine tune-up, fuel filter and fuel pump I was still having the same problems, but not all the time. I had a local mechanic due the work and he said take it to Chevy and have them diagnose the problem, which they determined was still the crankshaft position switch was malfunctioning. Since my mechanic had done the original work I took the Tahoe back to him with the Chevy diagnosis problem. He crawled under the truck with it running and saw the sensor moving around while it was running. He took the sensor out and discovered that one of the mounting bolts screws into a brass fitting inside the plastic timing chain cover. The brass fitting was loose and just needed a screw driver inserted into it to spread it to increase the tension on the plastic cover. My mechanic put it back together and it resolved all my problems, meaning most of the $2000 dollars I had spent trying to fix a problem that ended up being caused by maybe a 25 cent brass fitting in a plastic cover. Live and Learn. By the way my 1996 Tahoe has almost 154000 miles on it with the original engine and transmission.
  • 1994 chevy suburban 1500. will crank, but willnot start. fuel press checks good. no fuel flow from the injectors.Already replaced injectors, inline fuel filter, . Will attempt to start when stat fluid added.
  • Have a 2004 Tahoe that has failed to start without any pattern for several months now . Usually at the mall or when out with the kids. All works when I try to start, but will not. All the lights function and the radio and tv work. No sound at all when trying to start. Have had towed to dealer 5 times. My luck, always started when got there. Finally, this week when I went to get car, did not start at the dealer. They now say it is the ignition switch, but need to check to make sure this is the problem. Has anyone had these same issues and had them resolved with success? Thank you.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Very plausible.

    Could be any number of factors, battery, corrosion/loose terminal connections, bad starter or solenoid, key switch (particularly if you have a big ring of keys/weight hanging), security chip programming, etc.

    Nice to find a hard failure, where they can meter to find exactly where the problem is. Else, you have to throw parts at intermittent problems, and that can get expensive fast.
  • I've been trying to find this problem for months now...
    My truck gets progressively more difficult to start, the longer it sets. On mornings when the truck was driven the previous evening, it will start no problem, but will run rough (really rough - will die at idle) for 15 minutes or so then smooth out and run fine once it has warmed up. IF I let the truck set for a full 24 hours or more, it won't start. In the past, during hard start episodes, I could get it to start if I cranked and cranked and cranked (cooling the starter and cables with water on occasion). When it would start, it would act flooded (lots of smoke and sputtering) - then again it would smooth out eventually and run fine. After the initial hard start, subsequent starts during the day would be uneventful. During one of the hard-start episodes, I confirmed spark with a timing light and tried to use starting fluid with no luck. Pulled plugs and they were a mess, so I replaced them.

    The motor is a rebuild with about 30,000 miles on it. The fuel pump is a couple of years old. It has new plugs, wires, cap, rotor, coil, ICM, and I have the upper intake off now to replace the fuel pressure regulator (thinking the fuel would leak by during the time between starts).

    Am I looking in the right place???
  • Is there supposed to be a vacuum hose connected to the port on the side of the pressure regulator on a 1999 Chevy Tahoe with a 5.7? The old one doesn't have one, but the part looks like it's supposed to be connected to something...
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    When you pulled the plugs and said they were a mess.....what did they look like? That's probably your biggest clue.
  • They were wet (it was flooded), and covered in black soot. Replacing them was no help. Since my previous post, I have replaced the fuel pressure regulator and the crank sensor. It's now running rougher for a longer period of time (once it does start), but still it will eventually run fine after maybe 20 minutes of roughness... HELP!!! I'm really struggling with this one!
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    So do I understand this correctly, that 30K miles ago you put a rebuild engine into your truck, and it has been running fine up until most have a rebuild engine with 30K miles on it, and you just put it in your truck and can't get it working right?

    Black wet and sooty, is too much fuel with maybe not enough spark.

    What error codes are being set in the computer?
  • I have a 97 chevy suburban w/5.7 with the same exact condition. Original motor w/180,000 miles with orig trans. Replaced plugs, fuel pressure regulator, crankshaft pos. sensor, checked fuel pressure (which is within specs), Have spark (blue, but seems a little slow, compared to my 94 w/5.7 with orange spark. Checked my ignition timing with a timing light and found it to be incorrect (before and after I replaced the crank pos sensor). I have been dealing with this for over 6 months. I am surprised my starter still works from all the cranking.

    Since the ignition timing is computer controlled, I am suspecting the PCM.

    Chevy dealership said that they will do a complete diagnosis for $75 and it will go towards the solution, be it computer flashing or whatever.

    Otherwise I can get a PCM cheap from the local pull apart, but I'd be taking my chances being that the PCM is to be reprogrammed with your own VIN#.

    Just wanted to let you know that you are not alone.
  • About 2 weeks ago my tahoe started making a whirring noise. At first I thought transmission, but I'm pretty sure that's not it. My mechanic replaced the right wheel hub but that made no difference, the noise is still there. It almost sounds like a tire but I have 4 brand new Michelins with about 4K miles on them so a sudden whirring noise doesn't seem logical. The noise begins to be noticeable around 20 mph and then winds up with speed and winds down as I slow to a stop. The sound is not evident in neutral when I increase the engine rpms only when I'm rolling. Any advise? Thanks - Ernie
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    About the only suggestion I could make, is have someone ride with you in the back seat with the windows down. Compare the noise by listening out the right window, with that out the left window. If the sound is the same intensity, then I'm guessing it would be from the transmission (in the middle of the car), versus a wheel (clearly on one side of the car).

    If it's on the side, then try to pick up whether it's coming from the front, or back.
  • I have seen several people in this thread with the same issue of no crank. I too can wiggle the wire and it seems to make it start. It odesnt make sense though because I have checked and rechecked connections. The only thing that sounds like a possibilty is the starter solenoid or the park switch. Noone has actually said what fixed this problem though...anyone?? I am going to check the shift lever next time it happens!
  • I switched to a new key and that seemed to cure it, although it did happen once with the new key. Hasn't happened in months, though.
  • I was wondering if you have mud grips. They are known to make a whirring noise. Other than that, one would assume possibly a bearing in a sealed hub or a brake tab if they believe the noise is from a wheel, but not always. If you have vibration when you drive, it could be a fault in a new tire (out of round condition). Another overlooked item is the u-joints on the driveshaft. Roll down your window, put your vehicle in drive, and let it roll freely. See if you can isolate the noise. If the noise starts right off and gets louder as the vehicle freely speeds up, it may be your u-joints. Get under the vehicle and work your driveshaft back and forth. If there is any free play, they need to be replaced. But of course, try to isolate the noise. Hope it helps, Ernie.
  • Friend's Suburban is a 2000.

    Recently installed a starter and a "resistor." Not 100% sure what the deal was with resistor, but those are the only recent changes to vehicle.

    Post-starter install it's been fine for him. However, he got a code and had another friend plug in the scanner to find out what it was.

    Now, his "tow" light comes on whenever he starts the car and has a starting issue. From what I understand, every time the truck is started (regardless of cold or warm start) it takes a while to start. It does start, but from what he described it was like a slow start.

    Is there anything that would cause the "tow" light to come on and also cause the weak start?

    Not familiar with the suburbans, but can get whatever info may help...
  • My 2002 Chevy Tahoe is having intermittent problems with starting. Engine cranks but won't start. Takes multiple attempts to start and when it does fire it does stay running unless I start to lightly feather in gas by depressing the gas pedal (I know this is not recommended.) The engine will run poorly and then idle down below 500 RPM's amost to the point of stalling. In the last 6 months I have replaced fuel filter, air filter, fuel pump, battery. there are no DTC's in the computer. it is a 4.8L V-8.

    What is really odd is that the problem has occured on two different situations:
    1.) Most recently on a return from an extended vacation (>5 days) the car would not start or stay running at idle
    2.) a quick stop at a store for 5 minutes, return to vehicle and it will not start or stay running.

    The fuel rail losing pressure sounds likely but the fuel pressure regulator does NOT have gas in the vacuum line and each situation above seems like they are mutually exclusive.

  • did you ever find out the problem?
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