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Chevy Suburban



  • Why no diesel option in a new Suburban?
  • dnlkldnlkl Posts: 1
    I have 05, it had the same problem. I purchased a new button set on Ebay for 40 bucks, replaced them with no problems. Looks brand new!
  • I still have the problem with the dome lights not working on my 2000 Suburban.
    I checked the fuses on the driver's end of the dashboard - all good. Bulbs are good.
    'Dome Override' switch seems good. Any ideas?
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Get a small voltmeter/ohmeter (Radio Shack, or auto parts chain), I'm guessing current cost would be about 10-15 bucks. Check for voltage on the bulb socket.

    In my 97 Sub, I had a couple of bulbs that after a couple years would need the bulb twisted back and forth, or it taken out and contacts cleaned with a fine sandpaper.....just to make a good electrical connection. I don't know if this is your problem or not, but you'd detect it by having voltage on the socket, and a known good bulb (showing resistance).
  • GW55GW55 Posts: 1
    Hi Everyone, after my experiences with my 2004 Chevrolet Suburban, I do not think the Big Three should be bailed out. If this is the quality of vehicle we can expect, then I am all for NOT bailing them out. I have a 2004 Chevrolet Suburban with only 40k miles. I paid $30K for it brand new and it was just paid off this month. I have had a small coolant leak that got worse over this last year. It is a known problem with the cracked cylinder heads. The coolant is mixed up in the oil and went all through the engine. I now need a new engine and of course no warranty. GM's standard warranty of only 36K miles or 3 years is substantially less than any of the Japanese manufacturers. I have 2 Nissans in the drive way, one with 130K miles and one with 160K miles and nothing major has even gone out on either one. Now I have to spend big bucks to get it fixed. I refused to spenk $3K for the Chevrolet extended warranty, what a rip off. I did get the Geico extended warranty but they will only put a used engine in that was removed from another suburban that was totaled in a wreck. Live and Learn I always say. Huge mistake on my part. .
  • Hello all,
    I have a 1995 GMC Suburban and drove it from Florida to Seattle. ;) No problems. Is a charm! But here in Canada and with the snow I REALLY need the 4WD and is not working any more. :sick: Could be something as a fuse? If I don't remember wrong, it used to light up (the handle on the floor where you go from 2WD to low and high 4WD) I'll be taking it to a mechanic but since I know nothing, I decide to ask you first. Any idea would be appreciate it.
    Thank you very much!
  • i think you are talking about the lite on the dash that will lite wind you shifed in to 4wheel drive if you have a shifter on floor your 4wheel drive will still work you just dont have lite to let you know that it is working, if you have stick in floor to ingage your 4wheel drive and it do not work thats mechanical unless yours also have vacuum activated hubs some times hoses are crack which then you have a vacuum leak and have to replaced them, some of the newer cars have now good luck and i hope you before taking to a mechanic.
  • Hi troubletrrop,
    Thank you for your answer. I don't have a light on my dashboard, only on the floor panel where the 4WD stick is located. That light is the one that is out, but still I don't know if this could be a sign of an electrical failure or something else. I don't knoe what you mean by vacuum activated hubs, how can I find out if I do and how if they are ok? Thank you!
  • just to give you some imfo if yours had vacuum activated hubs, i was going by the imfo you gave me wind you say you did not know if your 4wheel drive was working, there are a lot of cars out now with this vacuum added in now well good luck and your well come.
  • llg513llg513 Posts: 1
    i have a 1995 chev suburban with a 5.7 non vortec engine i am wanting to replace it with a 1998 5.7 vortec the difference i see is the intake yet the bolt pattern seems to be the same . is it possible to use my non vortec intake and distributor or will i need to make other changes. thanks for any help you might give
  • cdhpc2cdhpc2 Posts: 4
    The fuel filter is clamped to the frame on the driver's side about midway (silver canister). Before replacing, release the pressure on the fuel line by depressing a schrader valve on the fuel line under the hood. Make sure the engine ic COLD before you do this, as some fuel make come out.

  • gracyegracye Posts: 6
    I have had my 94 burb just over a year. Within the 1st couple months I had to replace the master cylinder. Less than a year later I am told that I need to replace the master cylinder again. Is this normal???? I also replace the brake line. But still having problems with the brakes. Thanks for your help
  • cdhpc2cdhpc2 Posts: 4
    Our 99 gas suburban has started having real bad hesitation when it is cold. After a couple of miles, it stops. The computer says that an O2 sensor is out, but they don't tell me which one (there are 4). In reading about the O2 sensor operation, I don't think it would cause the hesitation, but I am not sure. I think I have 20K or so on the plugs and the wires. Any ideas ? TIA

  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    The error code will tell you which O2 sensor, usually decipers to bank x, sensor y.

    x = 1, is the bank with the cylinder=1
    x = 2, is the other cylinder

    y = 1, is the first sensor, before the cat converter
    y = 2, is the second sensor, after the cat converter
  • murphy4murphy4 Posts: 92
    We have 3 small boys, a dog and seem to always have a bunch of gear on trips. We have never been SUV people, always foreign wagons. We rented a Suburban last summer on a trip and I love it. The gas mileage was better than expected, managing the right foot and the cylinder de activation on the highway makes a huge difference.

    Now our lease on our volvo wagon is close to coming to an end. I am thinking Suburban/Yukon XL. What should we truly be paying? Is a 2009 better than a 2008? The 2009 do have the 6 speed, that has to help highway miles.

    Any advice to a SUV rookie would be appreciated.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Had our first Suburban 10 years, on the 2nd one now, upgraded just to get the newer style and technology.

    Suburban vs.Yukon/XL, is basically trim levels and logo. Just cross shop to compare.

    Seat selection is important, buckets vs. bench. You'll get as many people for one way vs. the other. Personally, we prefer the benches for two reasons. Firstly when we travel on trips, each of my girls gets a row and they lay across the seat, with pillows propped up when they want to sit. Makes for a very comfortable travel setup, able to travel great distances in comfort. Secondly, when you're hauling the kids and their friends, or family, or whomever, it's nice to be able to seat 8. I'm sure others will prefer the buckets for their own set of reasons.

    Having all of the storage space in the 'way back' for vacation suitcases and mantoys, is also key.

    There's a couple nice features that I didn't want to buy but came with my trim package (LTZ), and now that I've had them I like them:
    - electric tilt in mirrors. You push a button and the outside mirrors pivot inwards, so you can pull into the garage without scraping the mirrors. Also good to use in tight parking situations in parking lots, makes it easier for people to walk buy, or cars to get by without clipping your mirrors.
    - auto-leveling shocks. The weight that the vehicle carries in my case varies widely. I could be pulling a trailer one day, driving empty myself the next, and 8 people with luggage and bikes hanging off the back the following day. This feature keeps the vehicle level no matter which load I'm carrying.

    My girls are heading into the college era soon, so I'm sure it will come in handy hauling their 'stuff' back and forth. It's a great family vehicle, very practical and versatile, assuming you have a place where you can park it.
  • aggie10aggie10 Posts: 17
    We have an 04 Suburban,a nd we're looking to trade it in. We'd like a new one, but it might be too pricey. Does anyone have any ideas of a replacement vehicle that might be less expensive without a huge dropoff in space and cargo room? We're thinking about the new Chevy Traverse, but we're not sure. Our Suburban has about 60,000 miles, and is out of the warranty. That's wht makes us nervous. Thanks so much for any and all advice.
  • tsf7tsf7 Posts: 31
    Don't do it -- you'll never want to get anthing else! For me, there is not much that compares to a Suburban -- the comfort, versatility, and relative economy are unmatched in any other vehicle. We tow a 28 ft. travel trailer, haul church youth w/ gear trailer to camps and other activities, take long trips in very snowy winter conditions, moderate 4X4 trails in Moab (to get away from the crowds and see the sights!) and everything in between, and it handles everything with aplomb, in uncompromising fashion. After years of mid-sized SUVs, my wife and I often wonder how we did it before.

    Of course, we obviously use ours for the purposes it was designed; if you use it like you did your Volvo, you may be less happy on a day-to-day basis. I grew up driving them, so I don't even notice the size. My wife did not, and still gets a little nervous in tight parking lots. Be careful and analyze your needs.

    I can't comment on prices, ect, for new ones, but have a couple of observations. My bro-in-law has an '08 w/ 6.0l engine and 4:10 gears, and his uses a lot more gas than my '04 w/ 5.3l (also w/ 4:10 gears), cylinder deactivation notwithstanding. For instance, we took a 500 mile trip together, obviously driving identical speeds and conditions, and we got 2 mpg better for the trip than he did (17 mpg vs. 19 mpg). His '08 does not have the 6 spd transmission. But I'd go with the 5.3l engine regardless -- there are three trucks w/ the GM 5.3l in my "family," and all have performed very well. Depending on your needs (towing, ect), the standard 3.42 gears would be fine. If you tow anywhere near the max, 4:10s are essential. I like our bench middle row, but with 2 kids, we don't use the rear seat on a daily basis. If we did, I would definitely go with the middle row captains chairs for ease of access to the rear seats. Speaking of rear seats, if you plan to make any use of them, don't go with a Tahoe/Yukon. The design of the floor makes that seat practically useless IMO. Plus, there is absolutely no cargo space behind it when upright. With the Suburban/YXL, the rear seat is nearly as comfortable as the middle, and there is plenty of storage behind; we have taken a weekend trip w/ 6 adults and necessary luggage with plenty of space for all. Good luck!
  • ahightowerahightower TXPosts: 539
    Well, I'll jump in too. We have an '05 Yukon XL and love it. Very comfy, roomy, surpisingly fuel efficient for its size. The next vehicle will definitely be another Suburban or YXL. The differences, as has been noted, are just a matter of cosmetics and trim levels. For some reason, GMC and Chevy package things differently, slightly different standard equipment. Pay close attention and you'll eventually figure out the right model and trim level to get only what you need and nothing else. We went with GMC (SLT trim) because our vehicle had some things unavailable on Suburban LS, but did not include some of the extras we didn't want from the Suburban LT.

    If money were no object, I'd get a new YXL Denali fully loaded and be done with it. But it is.. so here are my present thoughts regarding:

    -gears - I'll go with the 3.42 again. With our 4-speed, I do wish we had the 4.10 as it tends to be indecisive (3rd vs. 4th) at higher speeds when towing. It doesn't lack for power, but occasionally likes to drop into passing gear for very moderate inclines. But with the new 6-speed transmission, I wouldn't expect that to be an issue, and would like the better fuel economy for the majority of trips we take without a trailer. (We rent a camper every few months, and may eventually buy one.)

    -Autoride air suspension - I wouldn't say I need it, but everyone who has it seems to like it a lot. I have never seen our rear end sag, even when towing, and I am very satisfied with the ride comfort. But I would like to try it out and see if it's worth $1100 to me.

    -2WD vs 4WD - We have no need for 4WD. No offroading expected, very little snow in our area. As long as you get the locking rear differential and good quality tires, 2WD with the standard traction control is just fine for wet and occasional ice, and gets slightly better mpg.

    -engine - The 6.0 is a beast, and not much more expensive. But, the 5.3 has never wanted for power in my experience, and again with the 6-speed tranny, I imagine it's very responsive and great for towing. I'd rather have the better gas mileage.

    -bench vs buckets - we have buckets now and it's been great. We have three small kids in booster seats. It's really nice having two of them in the back seat and able to walk through the middle row without having to flip and fold anything. However, as they get older and are able to handle it, it would be nice to have the 8th seat on occasion, or to remove the 3rd row entirely and have that much more space for camping gear and luggage. We have managed just fine with all three rows in place and the hitch haul platform for coolers, gear boxes, folding chairs, etc., but I can envision scenarios where removing the third row and still seating the five of us would be very convenient. Also, we may add to the family at some point and the more seats the merrier.

    -gadgets - We have the power pedals and they are great. I'm 6'3", my wife is 5'2". Wouldn't go without them on the next vehicle. I do wish we had sprung for the top trim level (SLT2, I think) because while we have power seats, mirrors, and pedals, we do not have the memory function. It only takes a moment to get set when we switch drivers, but it would sure be convenient to press just one button, or better yet, be identified and automatically reset from my key fob. Also wish we had the power folding mirrors as we have "grazed" the side of the garage a few times... Also would like remote start and bluetooth next time around, I believe those are standard on all but the base models these day. I don't need navigation or satellite radio, but I would like a USB port for the iPod. That may require an upgraded stereo.
  • ahightowerahightower TXPosts: 539
    If you use all three rows and need cargo space, the Traverse will not cut it. 60K is not a lot of miles and your Suburban may be very reliable for years to come. And you won't get much on a trade. Maybe you'd feel at ease with an extended warranty for a couple thousand bucks? If you must have something new, consider a lightly used 2008, or wait another year for an 09 with the 6-speed transmission. That's what I'm holding out for.
  • aggie10aggie10 Posts: 17
    Thank you all for the feedback! This is such a great resource. I have one last question. Someone mentioned an extended warranty.....can I buy that now even though I have 60,000 miles? Sorry if that's a stupid question. Thanks again for everything.
  • tsf7tsf7 Posts: 31
    I would second the opinion that 60k isn't a lot of miles for these trucks. Is there something potentially wrong with it? Our '04 now has 83k and has not missed a beat. My bro has an '02 Tahoe, 110k miles, no problems. My dad has a '99, 270k miles, no problems (of course, things like batteries, alternator, fuel pump, ect. have been replaced. But major stuff is still sound). His '96 before that, 170k miles when he traded it in (only traded it in b/c '99 was the last year they were putting the 5.7l in them, and he loves his Chevy 350s!). If you have maintained it properly, I wouldn't be worried about anything major breaking on it.

    Also second that when you go to trade it in, you will be disappointed at what they offer you. Unless you really don't like the vehicle or are aware of specific potential problems, I'd say it makes financial sense to hold on to it as well. Btw, you won't save much, if any, on gas in an awd Traverse. Certainly not enough to eat a bunch of money trading the Suburban in.
  • aggie10aggie10 Posts: 17
    Thanks, ahightower (and others). I guess I'm probably being paranoid. I love Suburbans. I guess I've just heard horror stories about repairs. Actually, I'm ready for some new tires, but other than that....I don't have any reason to think I'm about to have any issues. In June, we're driving to Florida (from Texas), so it makes me a little nervous long drive. Based on yours and your family's success with Suburbans, I guess I should just chill out and enjoy it. Thanks a lot for alleviating my concerns/fears. You can probably tell that I'm definitely not mechanically inclined. Ha!
  • arriearrie Posts: 312
    I have a '04 Tahoe with 102 000 miles on it and I intend to keep it another 3 years. That is when it will be 7 years old and I have to buy something newer because of the policy company I work for has.

    In the same company another guy has a Sub with over 250 000 miles and all he had to fix on it was intake "carburetor" assembly and the drive shaft went out just last week...$139 fix at dealer.

    Buying a new vehicle involves using a lot of money. Your sub has almost zero trade in value or trying to sell it is very difficult other than when some people hear about it having only 60 000 miles they will get it. It just is hard to get a good pay for it.

    Another way to think about all this is to replace the engine and transmission on it both for 36 000 miles warranty and it can be done for $7000 - 8000 with factory parts. You will spend way more for any new car with trade in.

    If your truck is in good condition inside and out don't worry. If it breaks you can get it back to almost as new condition for much less than buying anything new.

    But there always is that "new car bug bite"...

  • aggie10aggie10 Posts: 17
    Thanks so much, arrie. That really puts everything in perspective! I'm convinced-I'm totally going to keep what I have. Thanks again to everyone.
  • murphy4murphy4 Posts: 92
    Thanks for all the input. We are seriously heading toward buying either. As I do more research I see the differences between Suburban and Yukon XL is mostly packaging and options. I personally like the way the Suburban looks.

    Now it just about getting the best deal. Leaning towards 2009 because of the 6 speed and few other items, although the 2008 are hard to pass up because of the deals.

    Anyone have feedback on what a 2009 LT2 should be costing?
  • tsf7tsf7 Posts: 31
    Good luck. I think odds of several more years of trouble-free use are highly in your favor. In my opinion, virtually every car on the road will run to 150k miles without major problems. I and my family drive a lot (as you can see from the high mileage vehicles I identified above), so nearly every vehicle I've ever had has quickly gotten into the "high mileage" category. My first car, an 83 Ford Escort, ran until about 200k (died as a hand-me-down when my brother didn't put the oil plug back in properly after a change). Three subsequent jeeps all above 150k. My daily current daily driver, an '02 VW Passat, currently has 123k. I name the vehicles b/c some of those are rated lower on the reliability scale by a lot of car people. But I've maintained them religiously, and never had a drivetrain-related problem with any of them. Same goes for pretty much all the vehicles my family has owned. Incidentially, the only car I've had any drivetrain problems with was an '01 Acura TL, made by Honda. It went through 2 transmissions in 50k miles, due to an engineering defect that Honda has admitted to. Of course, freak problems sometimes arise, but I think generally speaking, a Sub w/ 60k miles is just getting started! ;)
  • aggie10aggie10 Posts: 17
    Thank you so much! Honestly, I don't know a ton about vehicle maintenance. I can follow directions, and I know when to get my oil changed, etc... However, is there anything special that you do to get this type of longevity out of your vehicles? When you say "maintenance," is there something specific you do besides regular oil changes, etc...? This is incredible. Unfortunately, as you can tell from my posts, I get a little nervous when the mileage gets up there. We have traditionally traded our cars in (which makes me feel like a fool now). Thanks for any advice. I really, really appreciate it. I'm excited because we love our Suburban. I was just afraid of having to spend a ton of cash in the near future. Again, I don't have any reason to anticipate any problems...just the mileage. Thanks so much!
  • arriearrie Posts: 312

    For my '04 Tahoe I do nothing special other than I closely watch engine coolant level. I change my oil between every 3000-4000 miles, closer to 3000 miles even though my oil life indicator says I have 70% oil life left at change. My driving is almost all highway so I really should not need to change oil at 3000 miles but I do it anyway.

    About the engine coolant level. I don't want to make you nervous about this but if you read on this Edmunds or other forums you will learn that GM had some issues with some cylinder head castings. The problem sounds to be porous castings that cause engine coolant to leak inside the engine, which can be very bad for the engine and lead to engine failure.

    I have posted about this but I write it here so you do not need to go find for it. What happened to me is that on July 4th last year my engine temperature suddenly went close to the maximum reading on the meter and I got the "Engine Coolant High Temperature" warning message. My engine coolant had leaked but I never saw it because it was not leaking outside the engine. I also had some level in the coolant expansion reservoir under the hood but it was not at half way as it should be and it was a false indication too. I added almost 2 gallons of coolant to bring the level back so I was very dry. For some reason (probably vapor pressure) the expansion reservoir never went completely empty.

    After reading about this under the "Engine Cooling" topic I went and bought a $3.50 bottle of Bar's radiator sealant and poured it in the coolant expansion reservoir. I have not lost any coolant since so I am quite sure I had one of those porosity leak issues and the radiator sealant fixed it.

    Because of the issue with this I weekly look at the coolant level under the hood. If it drops any I will use another sealant bottle but as I said so far I have not lost any.

    As your Sub is also an '04 this would be the only "special" point of attention for you, i.e. keep an eye on the engine coolant level so you can act before it gets too low. Mine was so low that I am just amazed that I did not have my engine burn.

    It also is that not all Tahoe / Suburban engines have these cylinder heads with possible problem. It pertains only to heads from a specific manufacturer at a specific time.

    Other than this change oil and just drive.

  • tsf7tsf7 Posts: 31
    No special tricks to maintenance. Other people will have different ideas (ie, change oil every 3000 miles), but I just follow the recommendations/requirements in the owners manual as far as intervals for changing fluids, filters, ect. On the Chevy, I change the engine oil when the indicator tells me to. On my VW, I change every 5k miles like the manual says. Don't forget to maintain things like transmission, transfer case, and differential fluids as the manual directs, whether the dealership does it or an independent. Opinions will vary, but I use high quality synthetic engine oil (Mobile 1) and transmission fluid -- adds a little money to services, but it isn't much in the long run.

    Beyond maintenance, I go through and check my fluids about once a month -- check transmission, engine oil, coolant level, power steering fluid, refill wiper fluid bottle. Your owners manual explains how to properly check these (especially the transmission). Takes about 2 minutes. Also, pay attention to noises, changes in operation, ect. Drive with the radio off on occasion and listen.

    As far as coolant leak problems, I haven't had any problems. The coolant level on my '04 hasn't changed since I've owned the vehicle. The temp gauge never goes above the center point on the gauge, either, even towing the 6000 lb travel trailer in hot summer temps and steep highway grades we have out here in the West. Again, good luck.
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