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Chevy Suburban



  • arriearrie Posts: 312
    ABS and traction systems both use wheel speed sensors. ABS for wheel lock-up during braking and traction control for wheel spin during acceleration.

    If a sensor that both systems use goes bad you'll get warning light for both systems.

    First check sensors that they have not been knocked off correct alignment to the signal sending wheels that they read. The end of a sensor normally is mounted really close to the wheel it reads. I have not looked at the sensors in my Tahoe but an old Ford I used to have had only about 0.030" gap between the sensor and the sending wheel.

    Check the wiring, especially the wire harness. Sometimes moisture penetrates inside harness and corrodes the contact pins.

    If wires, harness and sensor alignments are ok BUY ONE SENSOR and rotate it in each wheel to see if you find a bad one. I don't know how much a sensor cost but to take your car to a dealer or anybody else for diagnostic will cost you $70 - $80, which easily is more than the sensor cost. For example the crank shaft position sensor that I believe works exactly the same way as wheel speed sensor cost $63 + tax.

    I'm not sure if ABS and traction system warnings set a code in your car's computer but to check for that can be done for free at AutoZone and perhaps in other car part stores. If there is a code it probably says what sensor is bad if it is a sensor problem.

    Usually wheel speed sensors are easy to change so little work can save you few hundred dollars.

    I'm talking about the wheel speed sensors here because I don't know any other parts that ABS and traction systems have in common. This does not mean that there isn't any though.

    As today's cars all have a lot of sensors to go bad I recommend to purchase a scanner that reads and resets computer codes. I bought an OBD II scanner years ago for my Ford as all cars have connection for it since 1997 I believe. Scanner has saved me its cost many times over as it only cost about $100.

  • I just got my 99 back form the trany shop. Check to see what transfer case you have. There is a silver dollar sized tag on the back side of the case half. It is probably a NP246. What is happening is this transfer case has a oil pump in the rear case half. The flange on the pump rides on a little steel shim inside the case and it eventuly wears out and the flange rubs a hole in to the case causing the leak. From the outside it looks like a casting mark or hole but it is caused from the inside. You can try to plug the hole and this will buy you some time. But it will ware additional holes in the case half. The problem that I found is that this seems to be a fairly widespread problem. The trany shop could not get a replacement case half from his suppliers and they have been on back order since June. We had to get a case half from GM ($200.00 more than the aftermarket case, Identical part numbers) Bottom line is $860 to replace case half. But, no more leak.
  • What about the thermo stat? If you did all that, do that too. Any coolant in the oil? If so, the engine has a cracked gasket.
  • My old 89 Suburban 454cc had 220k on the clock and a compression check said it was 100% on all eight when I sold it! The question is how much $$ will you put into it to get another 150k out of her. I would do a compression check to confirm how much $$
  • has great prices! Try this, disconnect the hose that goes into the radiator after the thermo stat. Then pop off the radiator cap and put your garden hose in there on medium pressure. Start it up. Does the hose that connects to the thermo stat and radiator have coolant coming out? If not, thermo stat is bad or a blocked radiator :shades:
  • Ok here's the scoop. I unknowingly plugged in a faulty trailer wiring harness into my 1997 suburban wiring plug. The harness felt like it was getting hot so I immediately unplugged the harness. I found a blown fuse in the box under the hood and replaced it figuring no damage done. Well this apparently is not the case. My brake lights no longer work and my hazard lights are intermittent. I have checked every fuse and the bulbs and everything is good. No other lights headlights/taillights, turn signals etc... are affected. Also the center brake light above the rear doors is working fine just the left and right brake lights are not working. Any help or insight will be greatly appreciated!!!
  • I don't know much about vehicles and could use some advice at 1986 Chevy Suburban Diesel I'm looking at (because I want to convert it to run on vegetable oil -

    The one I'm looking at has 200,000 miles, a rebuit transmisstion and transfer case. A/C and power steering.

    How many miles have well mainained Suburban's been known run for?
    What is a reasonal price to pay for this vehicle?
    Ad for car:

    Thanks for your help
  • I think I've narrowed it down to the radio. With the radio unhooked, It seems to have started for the last 3 days. The next delema is getting a radio for it. I would like to keep it stock because I have the audio in the back for the remote controls and the tape player in the middle of my dash. GM can not get a new radio and the salvage yards want $350 + for one. I have been looking on the net and eBay has several, however, I'm not sure if they will work. My model # is different from some of them even though the connector on back looks the same and so does the front. I may take $100 gamble and see if one will work, but before I do -

    Does anyone know if their is a model crossover from one radio to another or if a radio from a silverado would work in a suburban if the connectors and mounting looks alike? Thanks!
  • ahightowerahightower TXPosts: 539
    I don't know much about it, but food for thought... A Suburban probably has at least a couple more speakers than a Silverado, so there might be a difference between the two radios.
  • I currently have an '86 suburban with a tailgate and electric window...have had several problems with the window and want to know if the frame has holes for the hinges of cargo doors. Is it possible to replace the tailgate with cargo doors and is that a very difficult job ? I am also told that all doors from '79 to '86 will that so ? I assume that all frames are alike and when assembling the trucks, they either put the doors or tailgate on as an I am hoping that it is easy to switch. What parts will I need besides the doors and hinges ?

    Artie in Miami
  • I had a similar problem with my '86 suburban, and I looked in the book (manual)and it said to: remove negative batt terminal and insert an amp-meter between the battery negative pole and the cable and get a reading when the car is sitting (set meter at 2000 amp) and it should be reading less than 80. If reading more than 80, then there is a short. One way to find which circuit it is to pull out each fuse until the reading on meter drops.

    I solved it by putting a marine on/off switch on the positive battery wire...still can't find the short ! Can't use electric door locks or alarm with the marine switch.

    artie in miami
  • Ok well here is my deal, I have an 89 suburban, 350 5.7L with a TBI. What happened is the computer on it died and all it would do was pop fuses, it would still run, just not so good. Now what I did is this. I removed the TBI and the intake and the distributor and the entire computer junk (at least I think) then I basically went prehistoric and installed a new/old intake with a Quadra jet carb and a Delco Remy HEI distributor off of a rebuilt 86 suburban. I got everything hooked up with massive amounts of research on the internet on how to hook up the carb. I hooked it up to the vacuum advance on the distributor, the power brake, and fuel in with a regulator to put out bout 5 psi. Now when I try to start it, all the carb does is sputter and make big air blasts and sometimes massive fireballs! (Yikes, lost a few hairs on that deal) it seems like its not timed right or something else is completely wrong... if anyone could give me some help, tips, ideas, things I missed, that would be great!
  • arriearrie Posts: 312
    Sounds to me you have spark timing all messed up.

  • I have a 05 Suburban LT I purchased new this summer. It has a high pitched squeal that happens a various times. I have had the truck to the dealer. they can't find anything wrong with the brakes or belts. The squeal will happen if you are turning, slowing down, sometimes when you are in park, backing up, stopped at a light, sometimes even driving down the road not braking or turning, etc. It has no set pattern when it happens. Sometimes it will do it all day, other times it will go several days. It will squeal for about 5-20 seconds and then stop. Please help, this noise is driving me crazy and the dealer can't hear it and says they can't fix it until they hear it.
  • slinkyslinky Posts: 2
    1993 1500 4x4 it didn't have running boards on it when I bought it last week. I picked up a pair of factory running boards at a flea market before I took delivery of the burb.

    looking underneath it appears i'm missing some brackets, and from what I heard If your burb didn't come with factory boards you can't add them later.

    I know what the missing brackets look like, but want to know if the above statement is true. and where can I get them at?

    also the new to me burb the rear window wiper and defroster don't work. Any thing I should look for when repairing these things?

    Same with the cruise control.

    Thank you
  • I have a '99 suburban and mine died saturda. Just turned off and would not start again. It turned but would not catch....I have been smelling gas lately but hadn't the funds to take it to the shop. Was it your fuel pump or fuel filter? SussieQ
  • can you tell me what year models your letter advised of? I have a 99 and it died on me saturday....
  • I replaced the battery ground cable. The connector at the battery looked a little suspect, but not too bad at all really. I don't think that did much of anything, but at least I did something for ol' dad. So far, no repeats, and I did that a couple weeks ago. He's driven it about 200 miles since cable replacement.
  • I'm getting 15 city 15.9 hwy on my 05 Z71 Suburban- consistantly
  • My wipers stay on in the constant-low-speed setting no matter what - only shut off when i shut off the truck. Had to pull the fuse on the way home tonight. No intermittent speeds, off position does nothing.

    (2003 2500 LT)

    Any ideas?

  • I own a 2004 Suburban. Since the day I took it home it vibrates when standing still, at stop lights and when reversing. Plus there's a droning noise that is driving me nuts. The dealer tried everything from bolting weights onto the exhaust, changing the muffler and tightening engine mounts. Does anyone have a similar problem? Any suggestions?
  • sepenssepens Posts: 1
    hey, i have an 04 burb w/70 thou on it. the othwer day i heard a squeak noise while driving and thought it might be the brake sensor,however i heard it in park while giving it has become more noticeable. it is coming from the belt area and my mechanic actually told me the belt and tension were fine and thats it. its a noise i would rather do without and would appreciate any ideas about stopping it. thank you
  • lmartzlmartz Posts: 2
    They way to test the fuel pump is to take a rubber mallet and hit the bottom of the fuel tank several times with force. Try and start, if it starts then it is the fule pump. They have a habit of doing this and they need to be replaced ASAP.
  • lmartzlmartz Posts: 2
    There are two fuse centers. The one inside the drivers door on the side of the dash holds the fuses that control the rest of the lights. If it is like my 95, one fuse controls both the turn signals and brake lights. Make sure these are good also.
  • Thanks for the tip. You have a good point, however, I found out that the Silverado radio is compatible. I actually traded my 79 suburban for the radio from a 99 Silverado at a local Salvage yard... Still not working. :mad: So I thought that maybe the rear radio controls were bad, however, I unplugged them and still drains the battery big time. So I've got 2 radios that seem to be good. I'm wondering if the On Star computer that interrupts the radio has a short or something? I did unplug the speaker jack from the radio and it still dies so that tells me that something on the main radio plug that is feeding back to another component/computer is pulling it down. I'm thinking about going after market, but then I can't use the tape (in the dash) or the kids jacks in the back. However, now it's just that I'm this close... I've got to find the problem sooner or later. My wife on the other hand :lemon: is about ready to commit me for talking about it sooo much.
  • arriearrie Posts: 312
    The best thing for trouble shooting is to have an AMPERAGE meter installed on either the negative or positive battery cable, i.e. between the battery terminal and the cable. There are some very low cost voltmeters for sale in auto part stores. Buy a meter that reads up to say 10 Amp current. I don't think your drain current is more that that. BUT REMEMBER NOT TO START THE CAR WHEN THE METER IS CONNECTED. STARTER AMPERAGE IS VERY HIGH AND EASILY MORE THAT 100 AMPS. Use your small amp meter only for trouble shooting purposes.

    The way the meter helps is that you will see immediately which circuit the problem is if you go pull fuses one by one. The amp amount should be very low when car is standing without having any assessories on. I talk about 0.05 A or so. If you read 0.5 A when car is sitting I think you have a problem, now it is to go find it, which work you have been doing already.

    Did you ever disconnect the alternator? Often the diode bridge in the alternator goes bad and can cause battery drainage. Alternator would still work but if the car sits for a whole day or so it might not start any more. When disconnecting the alternator take first the thick charging wire off. If amp reading does not go to zero then disconnect the wire harness with 3 or 4 small wires. If amp reading now goes to zero then you need to replace the alternator. If amp reading stays the same your alternator is fine.

    I had a similar problem about 12 years ago with an 1982 Chevy Impala. I'm in a heavy traveling job and my car sits in an airport parking lot a lot. When that car was sitting for 3 days I would need a jump. Any shorter undriven time did not drain battery enough to cause a problem but that third day did it.

    I found the problem being that someone who owned that car before me had connected the cruise control in a fuse that was fired all the time. That caused a draining amperage at about 0.6 A, which was enough to drain my battery in 3 days enough so that the car would not start any more.

    Another symptom was that my cruise control always remembered a speed setting even after car was turned off. If you have this problem you can easily test for it by pushing the resume switch without first setting the speed. If the car remembers a speed it means the power for cruise control was not turned off when car was.

    Connect an amp meter on your battery cable. It really helps in trouble shooting your issue and it should show which circuit the problem is when you pull the fuses one by one.

    If after pulling all fuses and relay switches the amp reading still stays and you have checked that the alternator is not doing it about the only thing left to check is the starter motor, which can also be easily disconnected.

  • Thanks for the response. You have great trouble shooting ideas! That's actually what I did. I've already narrowed it down to the connector that feeds the radio. I'm not sure if it has a short in it or if the On Star is feeding back and draining the battery. I need to get a pin out of the large connector on the back of the Radio and see which one of those are shorted or drawing the current. I'll probably have to go to the dealer for that information. Thanks again...
  • Where on the vehicle does it sound like the noise is coming from?
  • Definatly going to have to check base timing, sounds like the distributor is of a tooth or so. Have you tried turning the distributor while cranking the engine?
  • What happens when you switch the fan to higher speeds. Does the fan shut off then? Sounds like a bad wiper module/resistor
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