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Chevrolet Suburban and Tahoe No Start problems



  • richarr3richarr3 Posts: 3
    I have an occasional (every 4 or 5 months or so) a recurring issue with my Tahoe. It will turn over, rev up like its starting and then immediately die. The fuel pump has been replaced twice, once at 70k another at 190k. Fuel filter replaced too numerous to count. The longest period of time between starting problems (about 15 months), the dealer replaced the negative battery cable. In the past it may run after about 10 minutes, or it may be later in the day, or not at all. This week I did a little off roading, (not mud riding), it ran fine. Got out, hiked for about 3 hours and came back, it would not start. Just crank, rev, die. Rolled the tahoe forward about 20 yards and it ran just fine. No problems since, but of course I'm scared to get to far from civilization. Any suggestions? Can it possibly be the negative battery cable? Thanks in advance.
  • arriearrie Posts: 312

    As your problem is very intermittent it kind of says you have a loose wire connection somewhere. And it most certainly is not the negative battery cable. If it was, your engine simply would not crank when you try to start.

    I have a '04 Tahoe LT and have had a couple bad connection issues.

    The first one was wire harness to MAP sensor. When engine was in idle it shut off when I touched the wire harness. And this did not even leave a code in the computer.

    I'm not sure if loose MAP sensor wire would prevent engine from starting but it could. Map sensor is located on top of the engine by the fire wall under the plastic engine cover.

    Another problem I had with MAF wire harness. Soldering those wires to connectors improved my engine performance a bit. This should not prevent the engine from starting though.

    You could have a bad connection on the crank shaft position sensor or the sensor itself is bad. This sensor is located behind the starter motor, which must be removed to gain access to the sensor. This is not very bad job if you are a hands on person. It does require a torque wrench though for tightening the starter motor bolts to correct tightness.

    Crank shaft position sensor cost about $70 I think. I replaced mine and it was $65 + tax. Replacing it would rule that out as a problem and this sensor will prevent the engine from starting if it goes bad or signal does not get to the computer for a bad connection.

    Another sensor that would not let engine start is cam shaft position sensor. It works the same way as crank shaft sensor and is located in a more difficult place on top of the engine by the fire wall. It is lower on back side on engine that the MAP sensor and is quite hard to reach. I would think that a good mechanic would be able to change this without removing the intake manifold from the engine.

  • michael_hmichael_h Posts: 2
    I have a 1999 Tahoe that is occasionally having trouble starting. At times it cranks, tries to start, and dies, so I knwo it is getting fuel and ignition. It is not the starter or battery. Appears to happen only in mornings or in humid environments. Sometimes after several attempts it will start, but most of the time it will either start first time, or will not start at all after multiple attempts. I have seen similar posts on this issue, but have not seen a resolution. Has anyone solved this problem??
  • mworkmanmworkman Posts: 3
    My truck will not start after a rain shower or during high cranks and turns over but will not start..any suggestions? I've changed the distributor/rotar (looked fine) after checking it for cracks..none found.
  • mtnman7mtnman7 Posts: 2
    Truck is hard to start when cold start in the a.m.

    Must turn ignition on and off several times before engine will fire. Have to give it gas to start. Almost sounds like it’s “gargling” when it does. The problem goes away once warm. Seems more of an issue with a full tank of gas.

    Fuel pump replaced last summer.
    Not starting as fast as before.
    Truck stalled twice this summer when coming to a hard stop with the A/C on.
    Service Engine light came on 2 weeks ago. P0452 Fuel Tank Pressure Signal circuit Input below minimum.
    The difficulty starting has become more serious over the last 2 weeks.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Tahoe Starting Problems may be helpful.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • Thank you. I did previously read whatever I could find for Tahoe's with similar problems. It seems to boil down to the fuel pressure regulator or perhaps a security bug. I'm getting spark, so I'm pretty certain that it's not electronic or security in nature, since security systems always cancel the spark or prevent power going to the starter. I'm thinking more about the FPR. I could smell fuel in the exhaust pipe and saw the threads on the plugs were a little wet, but that could mean fuel is maybe just dribbling into the chamber. A spark will ignite fuel vapor but not just liquid fuel. Could the FPR possibly be letting in low-pressure fuel that the injectors are not vaporzing?

    I read that the FPR is on the drivers side, but didn't see a pic. I presume like most liquid pressure regulators that it would be disc-shaped with a pipe connection in the center, on both sides? I read that if you take the top hose off (vacuum side) and if fuel comes out, the FPR is bad. Also, every time I turned the key to ON, the pump would prime. Wouldn't the system be primed and the FPR tell it not to prime if I had just tried cranking it over? Other cars I've had have done that. You would get a very short prime if you had just primed it, since the system was fully pressurized.
  • So I did a little more investigating. Went to the schrader valve on the fuel crossover rail to see if there was pressure. Inserted a small screwdriver to press the center nipple down and nothing. Not a spritz or even a drip. Then I primed the pump 4 times, figuring that should for sure build pressure. Tried the valve again and nothing at all.

    So since I smelled fuel during cranking, I feel that very low pressure fuel is getting into the cylinders somehow. So quite possibly my regulator went bad. Where exactly is the thing??

    My other possibility is the factory alarm is preventing fuel flow, BUT doesn't it prevent the fuel pump from running? Seems odd it still prime the system if the alarm is telling it not too. The horn doesn't honk or anything like it's alarming when trying to start the truck. The security light does go on while cranking the motor. That normal? Is they some definitive way to 'reset' the factory alarm or to make sure it's off so I can rule it out?
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Give Got a Quick, Technical Question? a try. Maybe one of the experts over there could help you.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • Thanks; I posted there too.

    So I've decided to change the regulator and see if the pump is pumping fuel by removing the filter inlet line and priming the pump. Any tips or tricks on replacing the regulator? Do I need any special tools to get it unhooked from the lines? Twist and pull??
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Your braver than I am! I leave this stuff to the pros who know what they are doing. :)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • delariadelaria Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 Chevy Suburban 1500. One recent morning, we went to start the car after a night in the garage and it would not start. It made all the normal starting sounds, engine turning over, etc. (no clicking - like with a dead battery) but it would not catch and idle. After several tries we waited about 10 minutes and were then able to start it.

    In a couple subsequent repeats of this problem, we noticed that the fuel level was below 1/4 tank. Since I had a 5 gallon fuel tank for the lawn mower, I added 5 gallons to the tank and it started right away.

    On yet another occasion, it sat for the night, would'nt start (with 1/4 tank) - tried a few times - still nothing. Added 5 gallons and it started right away.

    Any thoughts.
  • rockman59rockman59 Posts: 250
    My thoughts: (1) your fuel guage or sending unit is inaccurate and when it shows 1/4 tank it is acutally almost empty. (2) The gauge/sending unit is correct but something is amiss with the parts that deliver the actual fuel into the system.
  • We have a 99 Suburban we bought used in 2003. When ever it is humid or very damp outside, the truck will not start. We have replaced the ditributor cap and plug wires and it didn't help.I didn't make it to work today because of this recurring problem. It doesn't seem to matter how much gas is in the tank, just the weather outside.
  • 2001 Tahoe 5.3L. Jump in and turn the key on the truck will crank but not start. If i try to crank it again it acts like it fluids and i have to let it sit. If I get in and turn the key on and let the fuel pump cycle once or twice it will start no problem. Fuel pump was replaced and also the fuel regulator. Please help. I have seen some posting about the security. My security light does not come on when i have this problem.
  • delaria-i have an 03 burb Z71 with the 5.3L engine that does the same thing.Any time fuel gets below 1/4 tank,she might not start. Put in 2 gal of lawnmower gas & boom goes the dynamite. The gas guage is working properly- it will show 1/4 tank and if i take it immediately to the gas station & fill it up-it has about 7-8 gallons of fuel in it. Ran in to another 03 burb owner @ the gas station & asked if theirs did the same thing(03Z71)-and yes it did. Lady thought she was crazy. GM had replaced 2 fuel pumps for them & still does it. Have you asked your dealer about service bulletins covering this issue? The response i get is change fuel pump & that's not the answer.
  • Did you ever find an answer. I have a 2001 Suburban that does the same thing. It won't start on the first turn of the ignition but will fire up fine on the 2nd or thrid tuen. No running problems once started and the security light never comes on.
  • hi ihave tahoe 2003 ihave proplem whith remote keyles not working how can i make work in this car :mad:
  • dee23dee23 Posts: 4
    Did you have this problem again? Also, did you ever look into accelerator actuator? Frayed wires on throtle body?
  • I have a 2001 Tahoe and walked out this morning to go to church and it wouldn't start. No crank or anything. Voltmeter looks good @ 12 volts but it will do nothing. No warning signs, no other times, just will not even try to start. Does anyone have any suggesstions?
  • I bought my 07 LT Tahoe only three weeks ago, didn't off-road with it yet. Its been only 1873 Km and now I'm having this annoying problem. I usually start the car using the remote control. But early morning today it didn't start using the remote. So I tried starting it manually and also it didn't. After a couple of trails it eventually started but with this message in the message center. The message center reads "Engine power reduced\Service traction control".

    Any ideas??
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Under warranty, get it back to the dealer
  • My 1993 S10 Blazer continues to have starting problems. We have droped the fuel tank and cleaned it. Checked and cleaned the fuel pump screen. I sent my blazer to the shop for help. They said my spark plugs were fouled/fuel rich.

    Help, I do not know where to turn next or try to fix this problem. Has any one any suggestions? Thank you.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    12Volts is too low. Get it jumped and take it to get a battery/alternator checked for free at an autoparts chain (pep boys, autozone, etc).
  • juju2juju2 Posts: 3
    I just got my Tahoe out of the shop today. Just last week it wouldn't start 3xs. I've taken it to the shop previous time before for the same problem. This time they told me that the problem was that the fuel pump relay staying on at times draining the battery. They repIaced it and the battery. I hope this is the true reason. I've taken it to the shop for this same problem 3-4 times. I hope this helps you because I'd hate for you to go through what me and my wife have been through with ours. Who wants to be worried about if you car is going to start or not. It got so bad I put the battery jumper in back, so if it ever happens again so I get stuck again. I love my truck, but can do without the problems
  • Indeed, I'm waiting for their call today.
  • You see, I love my truck too man. But its really sad that I had to take it to the dealer's stupid shop after only three weeks of minimum usage. I mean what kind of trucks is chevy making these days??

    Anyhow, hope they resolve my problem once and for all. Because I really hate the frequent visits to the dealer's shop.

    Thanx juju2...
  • ...guess what??

    I got my Tahoe from the dealer's shop yesterday. Today morning I encountered the same problem again. I'll take it to them today after work and we'll see.

    ...& Chevy...I cry your good days.
  • I have had issues with my 99 Tahoe running poorly in inclement and/or humid conditions as well. It is intermittent though. I have replaced the MAP sensor 3 times now and each time it seems to correct the problem for about 12 months or so then it will tend to happen again. I have also kept the fuel filter replaced regularly.
    I am not sure why the MAP sensor would foul up but as now that is all I know to correct the issue.
    Good Luck.
  • I have had issues with my 99 Tahoe running poorly in inclement and/or humid conditions as well. It is intermittent though. I have replaced the MAP sensor 3 times now and each time it seems to correct the problem for about 12 months or so then it will tend to happen again. I have also kept the fuel filter replaced regularly.
    I am not sure why the MAP sensor would foul up but as now that is all I know to correct the issue.
    Good Luck.
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