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Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra Brake Problems



  • Not sure about the grease, but your problem was/is the same as mine, same truck, 2002. I did what you have done and replaced the hubs. I replaced the hubs because the bearings went bad at 95,000 mile. That did nothing to help for the brake problem. I finally took the ABS fuse out as a suggestion from a mechanic. Not a problem since I did 2 yrs/20k miles ago. The ABS light will come on. It even passes the tuff PA state inspection with that way. I will say, I do not have the brake line failure problem others have. Mine was all in the ABS.
  • Thanks.. Ive done that for the last week. I am concered about the NY state Insp. I would like to get the problem fixed however if I have to drive with the ABS and Brake light on I will. Its just frustrating.
  • Jim here, Just wanted to say that the grease your having in the sensor trace is reminescent of a bad wheel bearing. That bad wheel bearing is what is confusing the abs sensor at 5 mph. My wheel bearing was bad enough to confuse the abs sensor, but not bad enough to notice a wobble.
    Might be a good idea to check that bearing before you lose a wheel, or brakes. Like i posted many times, i had to hit a BIG yello pole at Lowes, to keep from ramming a car in the parking lot, due to NO BRAKES.
    Good luck. Welcome to the JOYS of CHEVY OWNERSHIP!!
    Jim said that!!
  • I did not have any problem with PA state inspection with the ABS light on. If you do, just simply put the fuse back in. Like Jim said, check the wheel bearing for wobble. I had to replace mine for bad bearings,. It went bad with no warning. One day fine, the next day loud noise and I could feel it in the steering. It just didn't help the ABS problem.

    Has pulling the fuse helped ? I noticed the better braking right away.
  • Thanks for all the help. I did notice a lot better braking with the fuse pulled. I haven't noticed any abnormal pulling or noise yet from the truck. The truck has been great for me. Its ten years old now and I really haven't had to do anything to it. Hopefully it will hold out for another ten years. Thanks again for the help. I will keep you posted.
  • jcmoore2jcmoore2 Posts: 7
    I changed the wheel hubs. before I did I noticed a load wheel noise from the front end that started around 40 mph. It almost sounded like I was driving with mud tires. It took me three hours to do both sides. It took about twenty min with an air chisel to get the hubs off. If someone was to try to do this at home, you will need a 55 torx, 15 mil , 18 mil, 33 mil (4x4 models), a torque wrench that will reach 177 FT LBs, and a chisel with a big hammer or air. The hubs do not like to come off with out a fight! Thank you all for the help. My ABS problem is fixed. The new sensers I put in a month ago are toast. The drivers side was cooked. the plasic was melted and the target was covered in grease. Its nice to drive the truck with no lights on the dash. Thanks again for the help
  • jcmoore2jcmoore2 Posts: 7
    sorry I meant 36 mil not 33.
  • sjc66sjc66 Posts: 1
    edited May 2012
    I have an 04 Sierra 1/2 ton and have braking issues as the truck does not want to stop like it should. I have replaced the rotors and pads and have function tested the calipers and everything seems to be working. The pedal has pressure and doesn't lose any pressure when braking so I'm thinking the master cylinder is fine. The wheel hubs all appear to be good and I don't have any lights on the dash or error codes indicating an ABS issue. Going to bleed the lines to see if that does anything. Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
  • mrfixit911mrfixit911 Posts: 31
    2002 silverado, problems starting at 4 yrs old and 95k.

    My problem was slightly different is that the pedal would pulsate as if ABS was activating causing the brakes to slightly loose pressure as if in a accident. After doing all you did, I finally pulled the ABS fuse and cure problem. If you want to see if that is the problem, pull the fuse and see if that helps. ABS light will come on but brakes work fine. Been that way for 4-5 yrs and 50k miles now.
  • ffej24mffej24m Posts: 2
    The initial problem was the truck shuddering while stopping so I changed the front rotors and pads to slotted and drilled rotors and ceramic bads. This did nothing to stop the shuddering, so I took it to the GM dealer and had it diagnosed they claimed the front rotors were warped "extremely hard to believe" i asked the dealer to check the runout and make sure before turning these new rotors. After turning the rotors this still didn't help the shuddering. Dealer did more investigation and came to the conclusion that the back brakes were work out and sticking, so those were changed and the drums turned. Still didn't help the shuddering so the dealer now believes a belt has come loose in the tire and I need to take them back to the tire shop. So back to the tire shop and talked to the tech there, he explained they have an '05' that was doing the exact same thing and its the rear brake shoe's grabbing and he didn't know why. He clamped off my rear brake lines to remove the rear brakes from the system and we tried driving the truck again, this time no shuddering. So took the truck back to the dealer and told him what we found. Dealer did some investigating and found that GM has seen this problem before and that the cause is the center hole in the drum is larger than the flange on the rear axle that it fits over and the drum is not going on perfectly square so when you hit the brakes one shoe is grabbing and the other isn't therfore causing the shuddering. To fully determine if this is the case the dealer will need the truck for 8 hours to mic everything and document it "what do they need the truck for the next 6 hours for?". GM's fix is to replace the axels and all brake hardware to correct the issue.
    Has anyone else heard of this or had this problem - or is the dealer full of BS?
  • gmcustsvcsarahgmcustsvcsarah Posts: 1,964
    It's great that your dealership has narrowed down the potential cause of your shuddering to the drums. We'd be happy to follow up on anything for you if you like; please get in touch via email at if we can look into this further (include your name/Edmunds username, phone and address, the last 8 of your VIN and current mileage, and the name of your dealership).
    GM Customer Service
  • hateful_jimhateful_jim Posts: 43
    Hey, gmcustsvcsarah, you need to read post 500 AGAIN. GM didnt narrow down the potential cause of the shuddering!! GM was TOTALLY in the dark, and couldnt figure it out, after turning a BRAND NEW set of rotors on the front, working on the back, and as usual- finally BLAMING IT ON THE TIRE MAN.
    The way i read it, not only did the TIRE MAN "narrow down the potential cause", He figured it out, which turned out to be a "MANUFACTURERS DEFECT", WHICH STATED IN 500 GM stated that they had "SEEN THAT PROBLEM BEFORE".

    AS usual, GM builds faulty trucks, then blames everyone else when they cant figure out what they did wrong!! DEFECT- I DONT SEE NO STINKIN DEFECT!! WELCOME TO THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF OWNING A PIECE OF CRAP GM PRODUCT- HATEFUL JIM SAID THAT !!
  • hateful_jimhateful_jim Posts: 43
    Hateful JIM here- If I was you, I believe i would make GM buy me another set of FRONT AND REAR drums, seeing as how they turned both down, and cut off perfectly good wear on a set of drums that DIDNT NEED TO BE TURNED. NICE to know that GM is sooooooo good to experiment on your truck, AT YOUR EXPENCE, when they have NO IDEA what they're doing, or WHAT the problem is HUH??

    SURE AM GLAD I BOUGHT A CHEVY, AND NOT ONE OF THOSE D--NED FOREIGN JOBS THAT LAST A LIFETIME. I SURE SAVED ALOT OF MONEY BUYING AMERICAN, wait a minute, that dont make any sense, forget i said that. Have a great day, Hateful Jim said that!!
  • I have an 03 chevy pickup, i have a six inch lift on it. Im having break problems soft pedal, pedal hits the ground changed all parts except rotars,calipers,break lines. Before problem my break master cylinder was contaminated, My fluid was green changed all bleed the system and still having problems, Can anyone help or heard of a fix to this problem.
  • mrfixit911mrfixit911 Posts: 31
    Mine had contaminated fluid too, never could figure how that happened. Go back some more posts, a few different answers, mine was ABS system went bad, After I changed everything, end up pulling out ABS fuse. no problems since, 3 yrs ago.
  • barnowl3barnowl3 Posts: 70
    If you have a hydroboost system, have you bled that? You have to lift the front of the truck in the air and turn the steering wheel back and forth about 20 times. You'll need to check if the engine needs be on or off. Worked for me, though my pedal would get soft again after a few months. Heck, it came off the dealers lot with a soft pedal. Never had good brakes on my 03.
  • My 2002 Siverado Z71 4wd with 70k on the odo now has the infamous anti-lock shudder, caused by corrosion. I pulled the fuse as a temporary fix, before the truck kills me or someone else. Called the local dealer, who also services my CTS wagon. Their response: TS, the recall was done in 2006 and GM has no further responsibility for their crappy design. I had a out of warranty issue with a Toyota T-100 at 77,000 miles. The alloy wheels were blistering from the salt used on PA roads. Toyota paid to have all four wheels powder coated.
  • barnowl3barnowl3 Posts: 70
    That type of response is highly disappointing. What type of corrosion caused the issue?
  • mrfixit911mrfixit911 Posts: 31
    That is exactly what they told me !
  • ffej24mffej24m Posts: 2

    Its unfortunate that I had to not only diagnose the problem for them but had to prove it to them as well. But on the good side they did fix the issue under warrenty and now my truck stops like a brand new truck.
  • My Chevy brake issues and my Toyota wheel corrosion were both caused by salt used on winter roads in PA.
  • barnowl3barnowl3 Posts: 70
    Well yes of course! They have a salt spray booth at GM, I know, I worked there. Guess why it is there? To properly test and design vehicles that will be exposed to salt. This is especially important for truck sold with a PLOW package (no one buys plow packages in the south) that weighs in at 7,000lb with a plow. But when those brake lines rot out within a 4 years, literally grow corrosion right up tot the master cylinder, and the don't seep, but suddenly burst, you have an engineering problem there! The wrong steel composition was designed or purchased or there was poor quality control. Based on how some of these trucks rusted, there may have even been some level of electrolysis as in my 35 years of driving cars in the NE. Here we use more salt than PA, I have never seen a vehicle do this so quickly. Engineered wrong, and GM ignored the safety of their customer in my book. With all due respect, if your new boat sunk in the water due to a hull defect, would you blame the water?
  • terrybillterrybill Posts: 6
    You do not need a lot of salt to corrode Chevy's brake lines. I bought my Silverado new in 2004 in Cincinnati and seldom drove it in winter. Yet my brake lines had total failure in 2009 with 48,000 miles. GM customer service did nothing, saying one should expect this living in the north. Cost me $1,300 to fix. I've had Fords, Mazdas and Chryslers none of which had any brake line rust over nearly 10 years and 100,000 plus miles each. Clearly, GM had a massive engineering faux pas with their brake lines.
  • HATEFUL JIM here- I try not to say too much, but sometimes, i just cant resist to put my 2 cents in. All i can say here is Hey- WE DID TO OUR SELVES- You really cant blame GM, They've got a free ticket to build the worst trucks in the world, THEY ARE BACKED BY THE US GOVERNMENT!! Most Americans back the unions that make sure the union workers get paid massive paychecks, WAY MORE THAN MOST OF US, and then we fork over the cost of a brick home, for a disposable tin can on wheels. AS LONG AS WE'RE STUPID ENOUGH TO BUY NEW TRUCKS, THEY WILL BE WILLING TO STICK IT TO US!! HEY- I'LL NEVER buy a new truck again, from now on, i'll go from 1 500.00 truck to the next. Have a real good day, Just remember, drive a CHEVY, and you can spit thru the floorboard, drive an import, and you can ride forever. Hateful jim said that.
  • I'm buying a 2000 silverado 1500 to pull a travel trailer, The emergency brake pedal goes all the way down. (I don't know if it works or not, I didn't check that on the test drive). I guess there is a cable attached to it, so if the cable is broke how much of a job is it to replace it? Could it just be an adjustment maybe?
  • mrfixit911mrfixit911 Posts: 31
    I got the ABS problem figured out 2 yrs ago, pull the ABS fuse. Yesterday the brake lines burst. I was at a place i could pull over. Just ordered new stainless steel line kit from Classic Tube . com. If you haven't; replaced them. Do it now. I was lucky. 2002- silverado 1500 4x4, @ 160000 miles.

    @joe in calif, The emergency brakes on these trucks suck too. The cable goes to a small set of aux brake pads on the rear wheel., I had mine totally redone at 125000 miles, it barley stopped me. If you buy or have bought the truck, check to see that all the total brake system(lines, sensors, master cyl, etc., everything) has been replaced or do it before you pull your trailer.
  • jeeps2jeeps2 Posts: 45
    edited August 2012
    I get radio static when my bug guard is installed. Remove the bug guard and static goes way. Put the guard back on a static returns. Static can be heard even with the sound system off. Reinstall the bug guard and it's back again. Any idea how to fix this w/o removing the bug guard? Thanks..... :confuse:
  • something as simple as contaminated break fluid can cause similar symptoms and do some pretty evil things.
  • Contaminated brake fluid ,good point. My master cyl reservoir fluid turned black after 5 yrs old and 85k miles, that's when my problems started. How would of this happen if it wasn't contaminated from factory ?
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