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GMC Yukon Denali/XL Autoride Suspension



  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    The humming sound is coming from your on-board compressor, a part of your auto leveling system. You are absolutely correct. The compressor should turn ON for several seconds when the ignition is turned on or started your engine. Unless the load to your vehicle increases, otherwise, in my case, I have not observed/noticed it ever comes on again until the next time I turned the ignition on. If your on-board compressor turns-on/off every so often when the ignition remained on or engine running without any increase to the load, then that may be a sign of a leak in the auto leveling system. The compressor is most likely located behind the driver-side rear wheel wall, mounted on the outer side of the H frame, there should be a shield around the compressor to keep most of the road debris away from the compressor as well as keeping certain amount of the humming noise within... check to make sure the shield is not coming apart/off...
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    How long shocks/struts last, that in my opinion depend on a combination of driving style, road conditions and how much load you carry using your vehicle... As far as the pinion seal, I have seen some lasted the live of a vehicle, while some with minor sippage (i.e. wet appearance around the outer seal area), and for some unlucky owners had to replace the seal within 10K miles. Double check with your dealership, I thought with the exception of tires, brakes, shocks, otherwise, the pinion seal may be covered under the powertrain warranty for 7 years or so...???
  • Has anyone removed the compressor and shocks and installed shocks from a non-autoride Yukon/Suburban. Will this work.
  • I had the work done at the dealership, and I even phoned GM Canada directly, and both said that the repairs were not part of the warranty.
    Thanks for your reply.
  • Has anyone converted the autoride on a Yukon XL to convertional style shocks? If so what shocks did you use?
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    I have not done it before, but I have heard and also seen it done before (on a TV program call Trucks on the If I recall correctly, the replacement gas charged shocks were by Bilstein, and the kits comes with some sort of plug to fake the OEM circuit from displaying an error message all the time on your dash. I tried to find that episode, but I was not successful, Sorry. Just in case, in that episode, they were replacing the OEM autoride system on a 2007 White colored Tahoe/Yukon...
  • Getting ready to go on holiday road trip up north. I don't know if there's anything that needs to be done in the event that the AWD system is needed, nor can I really tell if it's been active in the time since I've owned it. I know the full-time AWD is different than true 4wd system that I've had in the past, but I'd feel a lot better knowing its active when it counts.

    Are there any displays that let me know it's active if the conditions get bad?
  • dena01dena01 Posts: 1
    Hello I have the same problem on my denali 2001 You know it's kinda embarrassing . Did you fix your problem ? if so please let me know how . Thank you
  • jim334jim334 Posts: 9
    I have not fixed the problem yet. I installed a T and bypassed the compressor but I am leaking the air out almost as soon as it is pumped in. It has gotten cold here since I did that and have not had time or good weather to find the leak.
  • gmni32gmni32 Posts: 2
    well...i finally actually climbed underneath where the compressor is located. To my surprise the screws that hold the compressor to the bracket have a rubber type spacer with a metal inside that fits around the screw to i guess seperate the compressor from actually rested metal on metal....(in case you havent realized already..i am not really at my best when it comes to working on cars) compressor, every time it kicked on, actually was vibrating loosely which made it sound for time ...i ran to parts store to look for said spacer with the metal inside which noone carries except for i was told the dealer..well...long story short...made a make shift spacer myself...tightend down as much as i could...still can hear it when it kicks on...but not so much....i guess it would be impossible to not hear it at all when it kicks cold..havent been to dealer for correct spacer...
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    jim334, by bypassed the compressor, (I don't recall your particular model year - if the autoride is only for the rear suspension or all 4 corners...) all shocks are operating without air-pressure which potentially can damage them. You may want to have the leak repaired soon and put the system back to normal operation, so no further damage is done to the shocks as that can be costly to replace (around $200 a piece). Below is one of the sites I found in the past with reasonable prices just in case you are interested: html
  • jim334jim334 Posts: 9
    Thanks for the information. I am still planning on converting to traditional shocks. I have information that the GM Z71 package shocks will interchange. Do you know for sure?
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    Come to think of it, I did see someone had done that on his Avalanche, replaced the autoride shocks with gas-charged shock by Bilstein (similar to the Z71 shocks). You may want to contact Bilstein to see if they can help. Aside from the shock fitment, you may also want to check to see any "gadget" Bilstein may supply to trick-out/by-pass your on-board computer from displaying an autoride related error message as the system is unplugged... I will continue to check around off-line, if I find anything specific, I will post it here. Good Luck to ya!
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    After my post below, I googled on "Convert autoride to standard shocks" and found quite a bunch of discussions to this topic, but two of which have some, in my opinion, pretty good detail and information that will help (assuming Bilstein can't). Their URLs are: 516-autoride-disconnect.html
  • I also have a 2004 denali xl i was wondering how your vehicle felt prior to you replacing your shocks and did any lights come on to let you know that they were bad? And did that fix your problem and how many miles did you have when they went bad? Thanks
  • It's my understanding that if you have Stabiltrac, that you should not use the Bilstein shocks since they don't have the ability to change the shock dampening that normally changes with vehicle speed if you have the OEM shocks. Does anyone have any other input on this?
  • I have a 2004-Yukon XL Denali with an intermittant ride control problem. Intermittantly we see a Service Ride Control mesage on the dash display, but sometimes the system works fine. Sometimes, I know that the shocks have no air at all and other times they are fine. Sometimes I hear a load hissing sound that is coming from the left rear quarter section. I poped off the access panel where the jack is located in the fender well and it sounds like the hissing air leak is coming from there. Vehicle has 110 miles on it. Any ideas?
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    I have an 07 Denali, so I hope I am not going to miss lead you... the compressor for the autoride system on mine is accessible from under the vehicle, behind the Left/Driver-side rear wheel well, mounted on the frame. Once you open the cover around the compressor, you should see the lines/hoses to each of the shocks, hope you will find the leak there.
  • Being half an idiot, I didn't know the fronts were hook up to the autoride system. I had Bilsteins put in for $200 and the truck rides great. Delphis were blown out badly. Made it two days before the light came on so I was hoping I had load assist only. Not so lucky so I'm going to buy the Delphi shocks for the front and wait until the rears go before I get the Arnott System.

    What is the sensor looking for on the front shock? There is no air line to it so does the sensor control anything? Why not cut off the top of the old shock and plug in the sensor to the cut off piece of the shock?
  • jim334jim334 Posts: 9
    I just put Z71 replacements on all four today. I will let you know how it does.
  • A few mo. ago I bought a 99 yukon denali it has been lowered 4" it also has had 6" airbags installed on the rear. This truck also has 20" rims on it, I believe the shocks on the front are bad / going bad since I hear very rough grinding sounds when hitting bumps (tires in wheel well maybe ). I'm replacing the front shocks with air shocks and am equipping them with the same compressor that is running the airbags on the back. (in hopes that the truck front and rear will raise at the same time when needed)

    Im wondering since the truck has already been lowered do i need to find shocks that are a smaller size (then stock length) this way the truck will still sit 4" low when air shocks are empty

    (If any of this makes no sense I'm sorry i am a beginner in the automotive field)

    Any and all suggestions and comments appreciated
  • I never ended up ordering the Delphi shocks. I found Arnott Industries in Florida and ordered a set of shocks from them. They teamed up with Bilstein and came out with some great shocks for Autoride suspension systems. They are cheaper then the Delphi and 100 times the shock. Front and rear sets are about $369 for the pair. I was really really happy with the product and was completely satisfied with the customer service. They went out of their way to have good customer relations, in fact, it was the best customer service experience I have ever had.

    Anyone needing shocks, compressors or anything related to the Autoride/Load Leveling systems should check them out. They have stuff for numerous makes and models of cars.
  • im not so sure that my truck has the autoride / load system the truck has already been lowered 4" and i dont think the shocks that are on the truck are stock i am wondering though since i am replacing them if i can use stock size shocks or do i need shocks that are 4" shorter then stock size ?
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    Depends on what suspension parts (and/or methods - i.e. loosen the torsion bar... etc) were used to lower the ride height by 4". To be sure you get the right shocks, you want to look on your current shock for brand and part number to match.

    BTW, the rough grinding sound that you mentioned may not be the shock, could be the control-arm bushing(s)...
  • org57org57 Posts: 7
    I just installed a new set of rear shocks from Arnott Inc. They fit perfectly and at a GREAT price. My question is this. I have hooked the air line and electrical connection and started the vehicle. I heard the compressor run but how do I know if the shocks are working or not. I do not have anything heavy to weigh the rear down to see if the compressor will level the vehicle. Is there any other way? My old shocks were leaking fluid. Thanks for any replies. With the old shocks my tahoe looked level it now looks slightly higher in rear. I own a 2003 tahoe LT.
  • dmontanadmontana Posts: 6
    Hi All, I have a 2003 Yukon XL Denali .I don't hear the compressor anymore when I turn the igniton on, also I have permanent message "Service Autoride System or Suspension" Any idea's? Leak, compressor shot, fuse, shocks ??

  • ukondoitukondoit Posts: 27
    I have a 2004 Yukon Denali and the same thing happened. Also, every once in a while, I could hear air (whoosh) for a second or two and the air leakage sound came from the leaf rear around the left rear shock. The air pump sits above the axle in this area. Dealer dianosed the problem for $80 and wanted $900 for to replace pump. I replaced the pump with an Arnott pump for $179 and it's worked great. My mechanic replaced the pump it in about 1 hour and we did not rebuild the air storage tank. We just transfered the tank, brackets and wiring.
  • Some componenet of your autoride system is damaged. Could be the shocks, the air lines from the compressor to the shocks, or the compressor itself. The compressor should kick on for a few seconds at every start. It adjusts the vehicles shocks. I doubt it's a fuse because it displays the error message. Get under the vehicle (safely of course) and check for fluid running down the shocks, this indicates failure. Being that you dont hear the compressor though, I can say with 95% that its the compressor. Buy it from Arnott Industries in Florida. Easy to install and cheap to buy.
  • I recently had my air compressor replaced as it was not running at all. When the original compressor was working I always heard it at start up for 30 seconds. The new compressor tends to run up to a minute with each start up. I also hear it kick in while sitting at stop lights or sitting at idle. I don't remember hearing the original one except at start up or changing the weight inside the vehicle. Is it normal for the compressor to kick in this frquently or is therre an air leak in the system??? Any thoughts??
  • rshtrsht Posts: 277
    Your compressor should come to a stop after 30 seconds or so or pumping (following the ignition key turned to ON). As the compressor pumps air in your the shocks, you should see the black bladder on each shock expand (when its brand new - first time) with your vehicle ride-height increase slightly. If the compressor comes to a stop after ~30 seconds, your ride-height sensors, adjustments and air-lines should be working just find; otherwise, the compressor will keep running or comes on periodically (a possible sign of air leak)... Further more, you may also hear air being let out of the autoride system (faint whistle) following the ignition key is turned to off - vehicle ride-height lowered.
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