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Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra Brake Problems



  • trust me, its the wheel bearings. As soon as i changed the wheel bearing, the whole situation was fixed. Turns out that when the wheel bearing wobbles, it confuses the abs sensor, which causes it to kick in, and when that happens, your a rider, and Lookout!! free dent. bp
  • jimp99jimp99 Posts: 4
    Chevy did a terrible job with their (DESIGNED TO RUST) brake systems in the early 2000's. As for the RUSTY brake line issue if you want to tackle it yourself my way was to order all the metal lines (7 total) from Out of Mich. It took about 6 to 7 hrs with a helper some of the time. Get the 4 bleeders and fluid from the auto parts store before you start also. My Bleeders were trashed and only one worked. The others RUSTED off even with the rubber cover still on. The 10mm wrench removed them fairly easily but had to us a smaller wrench on one due to the RUSTING issue. The line going to the back brakes was the toughest to get out and in. Its a very tight fit. They did a Great job bending, flaring and installing the proper fittings. They almost fit perfect. I ordered the stainless for $200 but the steel are $160. I called them they had to ask me 3 questions about my 02 crew cab HD and it took about a week for them to send them because they are VERY BUSY making them. When my fuel lines RUST thru I will order them from inlinetube also.
    FYI: my 4wd just took a dump today with 6" of snow and I still have an anti-lock brake that activating at less than 5 mph(been a 4 yr issue). Next truck will be a Toyota
  • 2002 pick up,150k, ..... Had the dealer recall done, 2-3 yr ago, 120k miles,,. Problem went away for a while, but now, all most everytime I stop at low speeds, the brakes most certainly fail. I called the dealer to see what they said, being it was repaired before. I was under the impression parts were replaced I was informed, the sensors just had air blew on them to clean dirt, etc. It's not in the wheel bearings , as they failed at 95k. Dealer said they would gladly charge me $300 to check and $1000+ to fix them, but could not say it wouldn't happen again. lol...
    I am ready to take this to the auction as i would never want to sell this to someone knowing the problems.

    Is there anything I can do my self, parts to replace, etc for this? I know the brake lines are another issue to deal with. Have not had the lines break yet ! Thanks
  • Dude-Change your wheel bearings NOW. I had the exact same problem, and i went to LOWES. BAM, right into one of those big yellow poles.
    I checked everywhere on this, but no one knew what to do, til i found this forum. I ordered a set of wheel bearings with the abs sensors attached on Ebay. They were alot less than the chevrolet dealership. I put them on myself, hooked up the abs sensor hook up, and they work perfectly now. No braking problems at ALL. Just wish i had found out earlier before i got that new nice bend in my front bumper, and bent curtain that goes into the tire well.

    Do change the wheel bearings, This is an accident waiting to happen.
    The way it was explained to me, at slow speeds, the bearing Wobbles, this causes the ABS sensor to get confused, and when you brake at slow speeds, the abs sensor activates, so you have NO stopping at ALL.

    I assure you that this WILL fix your problem. For your own safety, check the bearings.
  • I was learning to deal with this, but ya, yesterday, all most went thru the convience store window. I'll do them this week, as that is an easy job. I will post as soon as I do, to let all know how it works. I will be able to tell as soon as it's done, Thanks.
  • chh76chh76 Posts: 1
    New to the forum, need some help to quell a concern with a dealer shop that I've had previous concerns with (many years have passed and I was willing to give another shot for convenience sake).

    Would appreciate any feedback on the probability (likely/unlikely) that the rear brake shoes would be worn to 15% at 48K miles. I've always gone through about 2 sets of front pads for every rear shoe replacement.

    So I took it in for front pads (not squealing but figured I was close with the mileage and it was a convenient timing) and asked for a check on the rear shoes. Call back was that the rear shoes were worn down to 15% and needed replacing. Seemed like too much so I said I'd like to come in and look. Got back to the shop around closing, front job had not been completed so it was still on the lift with rear drums removed for me to take a look. Sure enough, they were worn down. Asked if that was a little early and they said yes but no explanation as to why or any other concerns with other rear brake components.

    I asked to see the front brake pads that had been removed. Since I had preauthorized their replacement, I never got a read on how worn they were and I wanted to compare assuming front wears quicker than rear. They had thrown those away. Guess that's normal but they would have been nice to see.

    So I'd appreciate opinions on whether I'm making too much of this or... Should I be concerned that they told me they needed replacing when they didn't and when I said I wanted to look, they had time to put on worn shoes from another vehicle for my inspection.

    I'm having the rear shoes replaced. I've asked to keep the old ones that I inspected and they will be removing. If I should be concerned, is their any way to tell whether the old shoes are original parts to the truck?

  • jimp99jimp99 Posts: 4
    The 4WD issue I had in post 310 is the transfer case motor module. From what I have read it is another GM ABORTION on these trucks! I lemon lawed a 2000 silverado and then bought a 2002 2500HD. Never again!
    Boy was I stupid!!!! :lemon: :lemon: :lemon: :lemon:
  • max103max103 Posts: 3
    i have a 2000 gmc sierra 4wd i replaced 3 brake lines going to the front now i have no brakes we have bled these brakes and bled them same results all these lines go into some sort of junction box about mid ways on the frame i dont know what this junctin box is it seems to have some sort of electrical motor attached to it im trying to find out if we done something wrong or did we miss something . any heip would be helpful thanks
  • max103max103 Posts: 3
    i have a 2000 gmc sierra 4wd i replaced 3 brake lines going to the front now i have no brakes we have bled these brakes and bled them same results all these lines go into some sort of junction box about mid ways on the frame i dont know what this junction box is it seems to have some sort of electrical motor attached to it am trying to find out if we done something wrong or did we miss something . any help would be helpful thanks
  • Dont feel bad, my 2001 1500 started with a light that said check 4wd. The mechanic said it was sand in the sensors, (had taken it to Fla on vacat.) He said to blow them out. I did, no avail, lite still on. Then another mechanic said it was the thing on the front hub, so i changed that, 150.00, Nope, not that either. Another mechanic said it was the thing on the transfer case, 230.00, Wasnt tht either. I bought a push button selector on ebay for 43.00, Guess what, that was it. I spent 380.00 cause a "Trained" mechanic at Chevy said that was what was wrong.
    My next truck will be a HONDA. Wife has had 2 hondas, the first was totaled from the back, [non-permissible content removed] was in the back seat, SHE DROVE IT HOME!! This one is still going, and going, and going, and going!!
  • I pulled the fuse for the anti lock brakes. Problem solved for 1 week now.
  • Don't think that is bad at all. I think it was about the same on my 03 2500HD,though I have discs in the rear. It all depends on your driving of course. I wouldn't be concerned about it.
  • gm167gm167 Posts: 2
    the box os the abs pump. when you blow a brake line it WILL suck ALL of the brake fluid from the system resulting in complete brake failure. NHSTA has an investigation going on I hope something happens before someone dies.
  • Add me to the list of people that have experienced this problem, at 51,848 miles! We had a load of hay on the truck and were going really slow, so we were able to get it stopped. No warning, just a brake pedal that went to the floor, followed by the brake warning light (thanks for the heads-up, I already knew I was in trouble). Please be advised that NHTSA Action Number EA11001 (engineering analysis) was assigned on 5 January 2011. If this failure has happened to you, file with the NHTSA, and let the local news people know as well. There has to be a recall before someone is killed!
  • I had brake and ABS warning lights on twice for a little while. DEaler couldn't find any codes.
    I continued to use it and brake rotors would get hot. It was making a lot of noise, so I took iot back. They replaced front wheel bearings. Drove it 16 miles and rotors were hot again.
    What's up?
  • n1btfn1btf Posts: 1
    I bought my truck new and have always taken good care of it. Yesterday my brakes failed and the garage tells me all the brake lines are rusted beyond repair. While they try to gather parts to repair it I have discovered what appears to be several hundred complaints on line of the same EXACT issue!!!!! Seems there should be a recall or atleast a TSB for this incredibly important safety issue!!! To rust through the lines must be of inferior materials and not of stainless or moly like they should be. Am I missing something on this? Personally I feel abused by GM as I was one of those with the GM exploding pick ups and I stood by them and purchased another GM product, a new truck is in my future but I just don't know how I could buy GM again.
  • ttaupier1ttaupier1 Posts: 50
    Hi N1btf, check my other posts .. I just replaced mine with the Classic Tube kit, pre made and completely custum fit...CT1195-SS - 2003 2004 Chevrolet - GMC Truck - 1/2 Ton $299.00000/ EA $299.00, 4WD Extended Cab Shortbed, Complete Brake Line Kit (9 Pcs.) Look great and fit amazing.. if you read all my other posts .. I'm with you.. on you feelings.. contact me if you want anymore info on brake components I've changed
  • ttaupier1ttaupier1 Posts: 50
    #125 of 325 Re: Rusted Brake lines, 2003 GMC 50K .. you might want to start here .. and read up
  • dlee337dlee337 Posts: 1
    I pushed on my parking break and there was no pressure, so when I tried to release it with the lever it wouldn't pop back up. I found a spring on the driveway that is about 6 inches long, so I assume this has something to do with it, but I can't figure out where the spring goes. I can push the pedal back up with my hand but can't use the break any more. Any ideas?
  • I have a 2000 GMC Sierra 1/2 ton 2wd long bed. When brake is applied I have severe pulsing. Seems to be at lower speeds until the truck stops. Almost as if I have a warped rotor but I have replaced them. Still having the problem I pulled the rotors and had them checked, they are true. Now while the rotors where off I spun both hubs, one felt fine the other had drag to it. The truck does not pull to either side. I have never bled the brakes, the emergency brake shoes need to be replaced and I havent changed the rear pads in quite some time. Since the pulse seems to be from the front im kinda ruling out the rear. Any help is appreciated.
  • Wow, I have a 2000 Chev Silveraldo, Z-71. I'm doing research on the same issue. It started about a year and a half ago after taking the truck to Carquest and having the front breaks and roters replaced. Then I moved to chicago and didn't have an oportunity to take it back. When I did, the warrenty for the roters was up and they couldn't get the issue to replicate. Now, it happens more and more often and seems even rougher when breaking. It felt like, at first, the ABS kicking in, but now, it seems more aggressive than that. I just replaced the tires and while it was in the air, the tire guy ran the truck so I can watch to see if I can see if something is loose. I couldn't see anything, but he could definatley feel what I was talking about. And you can see the roters and everything connected to the front in jerking and the breaks wouldn't lock up. I had to put it in 4WD to get the front roters to turn. He suggested a friend at a local mechanic shop. Without looking at it, he thought it was something in the ABS system, but also felt that the ABS light should come on. He also said that sometimes it doesn't come on if the ABS moter has gone bad. I'll continue to research. Please email me at army dot strong @ sbcglobal dot net. obviously, replace the dot with a . and no spaces. I'll do the same for you. Thanks.

  • I'm not noticing any growling, but when comming to a stop, it feels like the ABS kicking in and won't stop until I let off the break and push down again. Started about a year ago and getting more and more aggressive and feeling like a rock or something is between the pad and roter. Was this the same problem you were having? I searched a GM part store for the wheel bearkings, but it didn't say anything about the wheel speed sensor attached. Is that something differant or do all of the wheel bearings come with the wheel speed sensor? Thanks,

  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    The wheel speed sensor is located behind the rotor. In other words you need to take the rotor off to change the sensor. Not sure what the wheel bearing has to do with that.

    Has your mileage decreased since installing the rotors?

    Without looking at the truck I'd say there's a good chance your rotors are warped. I'd have a qualified mechanic look it once over. What really doesn't sound good is having to put it into 4wd to get the rotors to turn. Sounds like the calipers are locking up.
  • hateful_jimhateful_jim Posts: 43
    edited March 2011
    jim here, I'm the one that hit a pole at Lowes, because of the SAME thing. I didnt hear any growling either, but my 2001 did the SAME THING. The bearings are probably starting to go. I learned on this site, that when the bearing starts to wobble, the abs sensor believes that the truck is going too fast, and gets confused, and starts the abs, which in turn causes the truck to have NO brakes. You can purchase an abs sensor, but the bearings i bought came as a whole unit, with the new abs sensor installed. You just take the wheel off, brake caliper off, then a couple of bolts holding the bearing on, slide it off the axle shaft, dis-connect the abs cable, and replace the whole unit. If you do have a bad wheel bearing, worth checking just in case, you'll know once you get the wheel off. It would be worth the time and money to buy a bearing with a new abs sensor anyway.
    With any luck, you'll get yours fixed BEFORE you hit something, unlike MY experience. jp.
  • One thing different about your description and my experience-letting off the brake and re-braking didnt do much for my truck, when the abs activated, i just had no brakes. As for GM, i would expect them to sell the abs sensor, and the bearing as two different parts. I have found that GM is out for every penny they can stick you for. I know that they come attached on the front, without looking, i cant say for sure about the back.
  • daveinsocaldaveinsocal Posts: 1
    edited March 2011
    I have been getting this strange almost whiny type sound from my front driver side wheel area. Everyone I have spoken to suggest replacing the wheel bearing. I am curious to know if I have to replace the hub as well or what. I have been searching online and all the parts places only have the rear wheel bearing listed individually. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Also when I turn the wheels sharply like making a U-Turn or something when I try to apply the brake the brakes will not engage (step on brake pedal and it does not move) until the wheels are near center again.

    PS. It is for a 2001 Chevy Silverado 1500 5.3L v8 LS
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251

    As of today, how is your ABS system in your truck doing? When did you first notice this happening when you were braking? How many miles do you have on your 2001 truck?

    Michelle P., GM Customer Service (assisting Christina)
  • Working great now that i changed the bearings. That fixed the problem on my truck, but i havent taken the time to check the brake lines yet. This all happened a few months ago, long about the time of my first post. As of today, 3/25/2011, my truck has 137,348 miles on it.
    I changed the bearings, with bearings that had the abs sensor attached, and it solved my problem, however, a little late, since now i have a bent bumper, and yellow paint.
    Funny thing, i had to go to this site to finally figure out what the problem was. Even the mechanics at "SMOKY MOUNTAIN CHEVROLET, in Franklin NC didnt know why the abs kept coming on when the brakes were applied.
    (They ALSO said there was nothing wrong with the 4 wheel drive, although i kept getting a "CHECK 4WD" light. They said the sensors needed cleaning, HOWEVER-I came HERE, and found out about the 2 MOTORS, AND after changing BOTH motors, AND the push button control, thats fixed TOO.)
    Just so you'll know, my NEXT truck, MOST LIKELY WONT BE A CHEVROLET.
  • barnowl3barnowl3 Posts: 70
    Same truck and year, but a GMC. Lost mine at 50,394 on 3/9/09. The front left line fails at the top of the A frame. Unfortunately, I only replaced the fronts. This week (3/23/11 at 65,000 miles) during a snowstorm, someone pulled in front of me, hit their brakes, I hit mine and the line from the master cylinder to the the ABS failed. Luckily the truck kind of stopped and the car in front swerved into another lane. That line failed in the same area by the front tire. I reported the last one to NHTSA and they are asking for photos and samples. Just bought a Stainless set and they are reporting that they are selling lots of them for the 2001 - 2004s. Do yourself a favor, if yours look very rusty, just replace them now and save a life, (yours, the guy n front of you or your child's) Report to NHTSA and hopefully GM will eventually take notice. It is a shame this is being ignored. When it comes to life safety, this is not the place to be saving money on cheap steal and no protective coating. GM knows this, as the new trucks have a coating. These trucks should not have been sold in the North, or GM should just say, Replace brake lines every 4 yrs or 35,000 miles.
  • barnowl3barnowl3 Posts: 70
    Brake Update: Brake line going from master cylinder to ABS failed during emergency stop. Same location as the front left line failure. Finally going to SS and replacing all. They report they are selling many of these sets for 2001- 2004s This failure was at 65,000 miles, 3/2011. Truck is a 2003.

    PS Update: PS pump rusted at nipple, causing loss of fluid, while towing. Makes it tough to turn and worse, you lose the power for your brakes due to hydroboost. Just need strong arms, legs and grit your teeth. That failure occurred 7/19/2010, 60,312. replaced pump, remaining rusty lines and unfortunately steering box due to seal leaks. Cooler and other lines were replaced prior.

    All fluid lines constantly corroding as if there is some type sacrificial anode corrosion going on very odd. Still need to replace fuel lines ( one splice repair so far). Classic tube is making fuel lines in SS also.

    Why keep this truck? have so much invested in replacements at this point, hoping to get another 3 yrs. Maybe GM will come clean with the recall.
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