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Chevrolet Tahoe Electrical Problems

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  • kmg10kmg10 Posts: 8
    In addition to replacing battery cables, they also reprogrammed the modules. I think that there are about 5 or 6 modules. On my vehicle, 2009 tahoe, the weird voltage fluctuations may have disrupted/corrupted the modules' memory chips. Pure speculation, but just a thought.
  • When I first got my 2008 Tahoe... if the truck sat for a day or 2... I would go to start it and nothing. Eventually the problem was due to my radio never completely turning off... and of course I didn't know... since it was something behind the radio. Anyway... I had to get a new radio and that fixed the problem. BTW... I will never buy a Tahoe ever again... or a GM product as far as that goes.
  • dixitdixit Posts: 1
    I have a 2009 Avalanche and I have experienced several times the problems described multiple times in the posts above. The entire electric system goes on/off while driving and you can hear the door locks going on and off, the battery suddenly dies, the abs light comes on without reason etc..
    Went back twice to the Chevy dealer in Melbourne Florida and they could not find any codes related to those issues. ( I wish I had seen this thread before). I believe that I know part the cause and the fix to this: The positive cable connection to the battery post is simply crimped in a metal connection of poor quality. After a while , some oxidation occurs between the copper ( I believe) cable and the metal of the post connection. The oxidation build up is enough to create the power failure. The cable appears to be firmly connected to the battery, so the mechanic doesn't think that there is anything wrong. This is also why in some occasions, just tugging or moving the cable will restore the connection sometimes for several months ,until the oxidation builds up again. Of course, replacing the cable will work, but it is less expensive to just buy an old style battery post connector where the cable is pinched with 2 bolts.
  • I recently experienced this known electrical issue for the first time yesterday. I just had my Tahoe at the dealer last week for a strange clacking noise under the hood. They stated I would just have to wait until it did it again. Yesterday everything went haywire and my Tahoe appeared possessed. Door locks, gear shifting abnormally making it difficult to drive and steer due to steering column stiffness and loss of power steering which could have caused serious risk to others around me and my two children in the car.

    Turning to the internet and finding that I am one of what is probably thousands complaining of the same issue makes my extremely concerned that GM is not looking out for its current and future customers. I will be filing a complaint with the Attorney General's office with the state of NC immediately.

    Not only have we dealt with this issue. We have long dealt with the oil consumption issue that GM continues to say is "normal" consumption. Extremely disappointed in GM and how they are handling MAJOR component issues. We also own a Jeep Wrangler and they are been absolutely amazing anytime we have an addressable issue.
  • It's been about 2 months since the battery cable change, and that seemed to have fixed the problem. At least, I hope it has.
  • Update to this fix. While replacing the VICM module did fix the problems, what it also did was start sending erroneous readings to my ONSTAR app on my smart phone. For instance, it is telling me that I'm getting 166 mpg with a fuel range of 4016 miles until empty. I called ONSTAR and had one of their engineers call me in which I was told this is a common problem across the fleet for both GMC and Chevy vehicles that have had the VICM replaced. Due to the module not being the original one, the new module is not able to talk correctly with the vehicle. Hence why it is sending bad information to the ONSTAR app. I asked why this wasn't fixed as it is a simple software solution. The engineer said that GMC is well aware of the problem but has decided not to throw money at it. Anybody else having this issue?
  • A little experience that I have tells me that maybe your body control module may need to be reset or replaced. The bcm control many of your electrical workings such as clock, radio, outside mirrors, and reading you key and sending a message to start the engine. These things don't stop working, they just act up. The bcm controls many different things! Hope this helps.
  • I too have had issues with electrical system, It would go completely black, no onstar, no power even for door locks. H
    ad it into dealership at least 10 times no solution. I did discover if I wiggled the ground cord behind the battery it would turn on the power and it would start. The dealership replaced it and a lot of other modules. I thought it was fixed but now I am seeing the same crap again. I just replaced the battery again. I think something must be draining it slowly as if I leave it for more than five days it is dead. I am mad my extend warranty is over and now I am stuck paying for a problem that should have been fixed. It seems from the look of this forum I am not the only one, Come on GM step up lets find the problem recall and fix it.
  • i just purchased a certified Pre-owned 2009 Chevy Tahoe LT and i am having the same problems. I have only had the car for 2 weeks. It is at the dealer as I write, and of course they have not found anything wrong with the vehicle. Have you come across a solution, or any suggestions. Thanks
  • kmg10kmg10 Posts: 8
    Bobby,
    Look at my post from July 10, 2013. I have a video of the problem. GM said to replace the battery cables, as the stock cables are not rated large enough to carry the current load when you accelerate. Thus, causing the voltage to fluctuate. You may need to reprogram the body control modules as well. Sometimes their memory gets messed up as a result of the voltage problems. Hope that it helps. My 2009 has had no problems since the fix. "Knock on wood" Good luck to you.

    Mark
  • Thank you so much for your response! I spoke to my dealer and sent them the info. They are changing out the battery cables for me at no cost. Im still trying to convince them to reprogram the body control modules, or at least check them out. Thank you again! This was driving me crazy
  • 2011 Tahoe LTZ 43k- Major frustration with a repeated DEAD BATTERY!! It happened about 8x over the past 3 months. Drive to store....go into the store..back out and its DEAD! Jump it and drive home and its fine for a while. No rhyme or reason!! It happened this sunday and again tuesday so i took it in to a local shop for a new battery. They tested the battery w car on and off 13.8v, starter and ignition checked out as well. I see that battery issues seem to be pretty common.....any real solution to this headache?? thx Brian

    Are there Chevy reps on this sight?

  • Thanks for the post traveler2012 and everyone else here. Experienced the same thing with my 2008 GMC Sierra. Was traveling down the interstate and my power locks, radio, gauges went haywire for a few seconds and went away. Did this a few times over a two week period and didn't treat it seriously enough to take it in until it lasted several minutes on my way to work on day. I recently had the battery replaced with an Auto Zone battery so I took it back to the shop that did it for me. They were scratching their heads until I found this forum while I was waiting and shared it with them. The terminals on these batteries are smaller and caused a bad connection. Has only been a short time but haven't had any more issues.

    Thanks again for everyone posting this and I maybe someone with a Sierra issue finds mine and it helps them.

  • wmallisowmalliso Posts: 1

    I have a 2009 LTZ. I have not had any issues while driving. However, two times last month I went into the truck to start it, and everything appeared dead (except the battery was fine). I also had the rapid clicking of the doorlock solenoids. Several posts on here mentioned the same problem. Both times I was able to get everything working again by disconnecting the battery, waiting 15 minutes and reconnecting (resetting all electronics). My problem seemed to be initiated with the slamming of the passenger door or the power passenger running boards going up. After reading other posts on here, I inspected all battery cable connections...and they seemed fine. But I decided that I didn't like the Negative Battery Terminal connecter, as it is a 1.5" machine crimp. Even though no corrosion was visible on the outside, I cut it appart with my Dremel tool. The copper wire was greenish/black at the two pinch points (all of the way around), and the connecter metal was brownish/black rather than grey. It wasn't the worst corrosion I've ever seen, but it definitely looked like the root of my problem. I replaced the terminal connector with a $4 part from Autozone, and cleaned/sealed the connection. I have been fine for two weeks. I will respond again in a month or two to let you all know if it is still working. Thanks for all of your comments and advice. If this continues to work I'll be writing a letter to GM identifying the problem and how quickly/cheaply it could be recalled/corrected for people. If this doesn't fix it, I will commence war on GM.

  • For some reason I could not get into my old account, but here is the issue I've been having that was posted a while back...

    "Mine is having the same issues while driving, door locks going up and down, gauges moving back and forth, lights flickering, sometimes the tahoe shutters, and this usually happens anywhere from 3-10 seconds. And when this does occur, when I get to my destination and shut off the car, then it always goes completely dead. Then I can hear a intermittent clicking noise coming from the door locks and under the dash, but nothing works at all. I always disconnect/reconnect my battery cables, and it always temporarily solves the problem. This may happen a couple of times a day or it may drive normal for a month or so. I bought the tahoe used in april 2012, and it did this off and on until around oct 2012. Then it ran perfect up for about 6 months, and now yesterday it did it again."

    A few weeks ago I discovered that I don't actually have to disconnect the negative battery cable, but if I just grab the negative cable and pull on it, then all power comes back like nothing ever happened. The only thing that could be affected by pulling on the cable, is the cable itself or the Battery Current Sensor. The battery current sensor is located about 10-12 inches down the cable from the battery. I think that the sensor was giving incorrect current signals to the ECM. I inspected the battery cable, but could find no corrosion, nicks, cuts, or anything, but I went ahead and bought a new negative cable ($11) from NAPA. I also bought the Battery Current Sensor from the Chevy dealer, and surprisingly, it was only $22. So far, I haven't had anymore hiccups, but seeing as how my problem has been so random, we will see...

  • debnobdebnob Posts: 1

    I have a 2009 Tahoe LTZ with 85,000 miles and put in a brand new battery December 2013. About a month ago, the truck was completely dead one morning other than a clicking electrical noise coming from the driver's door panel. I was able to jump start it and hadn't had any problems again until a few days ago. Now, several times over the last few days, various warning lights will come on in the dash (seatbelt, traction control, air bags), the radio will go dead and the headlights will flicker, and it loses power and steering for a few seconds. It seems to happen when I'm applying brakes or turning corners. I'm very worried about this happening at highway speeds and know I need to get it fixed! Has anyone figured out the problem yet? I'm not sure if I should take it to a GM dealer...it doesn't sound like the dealers are any help. I've read this entire forum and would appreciate hearing from those of you that have tried the various fixes and found any long term/permanent fix - battery cables, battery terminals, alternator, starter cable, OnStar, mega fuses, BCM, GMLAN system, VICM, clear codes and reset computers. Please help! I live in San Antonio, TX if anyone knows of a good electrical specialty shop here.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,272

    Sounds like your car's various computers are not getting proper voltages--which drives them crazy. I think you have a charging system problem (you can easily have alternator output tested) and of course, checking all battery cables (especially grounds to the battery and the PCM) is essential.

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • jsegrovesjsegroves Posts: 1

    I have a 2010 Tahoe and having electrical problems. The voltage gauge on the dash drops to around 12-13 volts and all the circuits begin to go crazy, The door locks will lock and unlock and the dash gauges will flicker. I had the alt tested and the only thing that it showed was the CCA was a little low. Once the alt gauge got back over 14 it did not have any other problems. Anybody else had this type of issue?

  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,134

    Hopefully you're able to get some good advice here on the forum, jsegrove. Please let us know if you're interested in visiting your dealership for further assistance. We'd be happy to reach out to them to further discuss your concerns.

    Amber N. GM Customer Care

    @jsegroves said: I have a 2010 Tahoe and having electrical problems. The voltage gauge on the dash drops to around 12-13 volts and all the circuits begin to go crazy, The door locks will lock and unlock and the dash gauges will flicker. I had the alt tested and the only thing that it showed was the CCA was a little low. Once the alt gauge got back over 14 it did not have any other problems. Anybody else had this type of issue?

  • @jsegroves said: I have a 2010 Tahoe and having electrical problems. The voltage gauge on the dash drops to around 12-13 volts and all the circuits begin to go crazy, The door locks will lock and unlock and the dash gauges will flicker. I had the alt tested and the only thing that it showed was the CCA was a little low. Once the alt gauge got back over 14 it did not have any other problems. Anybody else had this type of issue?

    Replace the battery current sensor, $22 at the dealership. It's located on the negative battery cable.

  • Thanks for posting traveler2012. Our electrical problem started after replacing the battery with a auto zone battery. I will recheck batter connectors for tightness and engine block to firewall grounds. It also sounds like an auxiliary ground from battery neg. terminal to the frame is also a good idea. I'm surprised that GM hasn't jumped all over this and stated that the smaller terminals on aftermarket batteries should be checked. The number of women with children should have initiated an immediate blitz to the dealerships and other repair facilities. GM needs to be proactive about their reputation, especially with the Govt. bail out still fresh in peoples minds. Why lose a potential future auto sale for $30 to $60 in parts. After the frustration level is at a pure boil it is too late not o lose them to a foreign car maker. I know my misses is hot about this issue on her 08 tahoe. Women don't like being stranded and all the technical talk in the world won't erase the experience for them of the helpless stranded feeling. It was said at one time that what's good for GM is good for the country. I'd like to pose a modification for the GM Management to Tattoo on their brains... What is good for the consumer/customer is Good for GM in the long run. Looks like that would be a no brainier even for those with a Ivy League education. Don't continue to lose market share to other manufacturers over stupid failures in customer support. If you screw up... admit it, fix it, build good will think of future sales... I've worked in dealerships where service drove sales... win/ win for all

  • danigirl12danigirl12 Posts: 1
    edited October 3
    When my husband and I purchased our 2009 Chevy Silverado, less than 30 days ago, there was an initial problem with the back passenger door lock not opening and closing and the next day, after we purchased the car it stalled in the Orchard Supply Hardware parking lot. We discussed both issues with the dealership immediately. The dealership replaced the actuator, and ran a diagnostic. However, I’m wondering if the initial door issue and car stalling was part of a bigger safety problem which manifested itself during the mentioned major malfunction.

    On Monday, September 29, the truck again encountered a problem, but this time I experienced two major malfunctions, within 15 minutes, while I drove home. It happened twice within 15 minutes. Both times I was approaching an intersection and went to accelerate through the intersection when the truck lost power to the engine, and the engine seemed to turn off.

    I was forced to coast to the side street and avoid being hit by the cars behind me. Both times I couldn't get the truck to accelerate for about a minute. During that same minute the door locks on all doors were popping up and down and the indicator lights on the dash board briefly flashed on and then off.

    I called my husband and he came and followed me home. On the way home the dash lights turned off and I could feel that there was a decrease in acceleration, but I was able to make it home.

    Once home, called the Chevrolet Customer Service (1-800-222-1020). I told the agent on the phone what safety issues I had encountered. She called the dealership and got me a FREE diagnostic and 1 hr. labor to investigate the issue. I also looked up on the internet the car issues I just encountered and found the EXACT same issue with the 2008 Chevrolet Tahoe within this forum.

    I took the information I found, printed it out, as well as emailed the information to the service manager at the Chevrolet dealership where I had the appointment scheduled.

    I've pasted 2 links below to let you know where I got my information from.

    http://www.autoserviceprofessional.com/article/92084/finding-gmlan-wiring-problems

    http://forums.edmunds.com/discussion/5662/chevrolet/tahoe/chevrolet-tahoe-electrical-problems/p9

    Well, I took my truck in for the scheduled appointment today. This is what the report said:

    "Tech inspected & found C0900 stored. Tech followed published diagnostic & found the UBEC cable/175 AMP maxifuse has fretting issue. Tech replaced the fuse/cable & tested. Tech also found the neg battery cable have excessive voltage drop.
    Tech found the UBEC cable/fuse has fretting problem & the negative cable has excessive voltage drop.
    Tech states the negative battery cable has excessive voltage drop cause: customer satisfaction
    Battery positive junction block cable replacement
    Tech found the negative cable has a 256 MV drop. Tech replaced the negative battery cable & tested. Tech states the cable now operates to Manf Specs."

    My husband picked up the truck this afternoon. The service technician said that the notes I emailed and turned in helped them narrow down the problem and pinpoint it without much delay. No fees or charges. I hope this information assists others and thank you to the others that posted their problems and solutions previously on this forum.
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