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Oldsmobile Bravada



  • Please refer to MSG's 26 and 27.
    Dealer repainted the flange areas in front of the back wheels and i had the dealer put mud flaps on, as he recommended. Picked up the vehicle on 01/23/03 and drove it home on slushy, treated roads. A few days later when I was washing the vehicle, I noticed the paint chipping problem was back. The dealer says it is a design problem and there is nothing he can do about, The Oldsmobile Customer Assistance folks are, as I write, having problems getting the dealer to call them back(for 3 days now). Where do I go next to get resolution to this problem? Need some help here. The vehicle was purchased on 8/8/02 and there is currently about 4400 miles on it.
  • cmack4cmack4 Posts: 302
    I still think this is a problem with the base coat of paint curing. I have a build date of 08/01 and still haven't had any paint chipping problems. I don't have mudflaps or running boards either. Probably the only way to get rid of the problem would be to strip the entire area and repaint. You might want to do a search in the Envoy/TB/Bravada board and see if you can gleem any similarities in build date between those reporting the problem.
  • mfullmermfullmer Posts: 819
    I had an '02 Bravada (Build date 4/01) until 1/03 - 21,400 miles. Not one paint chip either on the rear hatch around the license plate indent (never had the gasket installed) or anywhere around the wheel flares.

  • cebtebcebteb Posts: 138
    This is in response to Message #29.

    I bought my '03 Bravada (8/02 build date) on 10/19/02. I observed the splash up problem on the rear fender flares the first week I owned the Bravada and installed Bravada splash guards. The next week we had snow and the sanded (Colorado calls quarter-inch pea gravel sand) roads already started to do a number on the rear fender flares. If I had bought the Bravada a month earlier like I had planned, I would have had all my protection installed before the weather turned, but that's life.

    I did some searching on the triplet forum and found that this was a common problem and that side steps or running boards were needed to deflect the back-spray. I was already looking into getting a full package clear bra and one of the shops I called told me they always covered the rear fender flares w/ clear cover on new Bravadas.

    Of the damage I acquired from that first winter storm, only a few of pits made it past the clear coat. I cleaned the area, put touch-up (my Bravada is Pewter metallic, which masks a host of sins) on the half dozen real chips, and used polishing compound on the rest of the pitted clear coat. I then had the clear bra package installed w/ rear fender flare coverage.

    If you look close you can see the paint isn't perfect, but from 3 feet or more you can't tell anything is different. With the clear plastic protection and the side steps I added at Christmas, things won't get any worse. Since my splash-up damage wasn't too bad and the Pewter metallic paint is so forgiving appearance-wise, I chose to live with less than perfect (heck, I already got my first door ding in a parking lot). It wasn't going to be worth it for me to fight w/ a dealership and a manufacturer that are going out of business anyway. Life is too short, so you have to pick the battles that are both winable and worth winning.

    Oldsmobile and your dealer aren't going to solve the chipping problem for you. If you got the area re-painted and it is still in decent shape, get some of the 3-M plastic bra material applied ASAP. Running boards or side steps are also a good idea. Too bad that the most attractive styling of the triplets is just too much concept and not enough practical.
  • bobbiesbobbies Posts: 34
  • cebtebcebteb Posts: 138
    You get the 3M film automotive paint protection from a local, certified installer. Check your Yellow Pages. Many window tint firms do the clear film bras. Just be sure they are using the 3M ScotchCal product and not a substitute. Get several quotes and get their references. A good choice is typically a firm that is installing the invisible bra on high-priced cars for an auto dealership.

    Here are a couple of links that provide some more information:

  • Hi, I have a new 2003 Bravada that I purchased approx. 3 months ago. I am having the same paint chipping problems as some of you and I am very upset with the answers I have been receiving from both the GM Customer Assistance individuals and my dealership. After getting an estimate, I was told that I should take this up with my insurance company. (Passing the problem on) Why, it is not my fault? The vehicle is not performing as intended. If I was told at the time of purchase that I needed to get the vehicle repainted within 3 months I would not have purchased it. If I was told at the time of purchase that I needed mud flaps or the paint would become extremely damaged, I would have purchased them or better yet, would have asked why they do not come standard as a protection measure. I feel it is a design flaw and do not feel that the customer is responsible for a major oversight of GM.
    I too was offered the "goodwill" paint offer but chose not to take it because I was also told that they will not warrant it should it happen again. So they are saying that there is a problem but will not stand behind it and own up to it.
    If any of you are having the same issue, please post your concerns or ideas.

    I am curious to see how BravadaBob made out also.
  • bmartin48bmartin48 Posts: 1
    I am getting a little tired hearing this from a variety of mechanics that have worked on my 97 Bravada. Amongst them are:

    1. Alternators
    2. A/C Condenser
    3. Front door pins
    4. Transmission
    5. Heater

    Anyone else experience these types of comments from mechanics?

    I now have a rather interesting problem of "sloshing". The mechanic that is working on my car now says that water has gotten into the car and where it normally would drain, that drain is clogged and can't get out. He suggested that I take it to a body shop. Any suggestions there?

    Also, my two fog lamp lens need to be replaced, but I understand from the dealer that I have to replace the entire assembly. Anybody have a solution for that? Also the lens for the left rear taillight. It requires that you replace the entire light assembly event though all that needs to be replaced is the lens.

    Thanks, I am really glad I found this forum and look forward to reading and responding to posts.

  • cpoolcpool Posts: 1
    I own a 97 Bravada. I've had it since it was new in 97. I love it, but now it seems to be having some real problems that stem from manufacturing. How or can I even get manufacturing company to help me. I've spent over 4 grand. I love my bravada. thanks
  • abelzabelz Posts: 1
    Has anyone else but me experienced a little "chirping" sound when going over small bumps? Bought my '03 Bravada in March, 2003, and it began doing this almost immediately. With 5 trips to the dealer on this same problem they continue to tell me it's something on the hood that they keep replacing but continues to fail within a week "post-op". VERY ANNOYING! Other than that, I love my car and enjoy all of its conveniences.
  • I am looking at a 2000 Bravada and I was just wondering what any owners of a 2000 thought of it...good/bad. I am not sure I want to leap and get rid of my truck and go SUV. Any help and opinions in the situation would greatly be appreciated.

  • kworthkworth Posts: 1
    My wife just bought it and I am wondering how good the smart trac is? I am used to flipping the lever and would "chock" the wheels to see if things were working. Is this system dependable? Anything that operates electronically always makes me hesitate about its dependability.
  • My turning signal flasher (mybe the flasher relay)makes "bing, bing ....." noise all the time, eventhough I was not turning. Can someone tell me whether there is a problem with the flasher or the flasher relay or both. By the way, please also tell me the exact locations of these flasher and the flasher relay. Thanks !!
  • I recently purchased a 2004 Bravada. After reading numerous postings about the paint chip problem, I contacted my Olds dealership to inquire about purchasing and installing mud guards before any damage occurred. While in the process of discussing the problem with a service rep, I was informed that GM was aware of the problem, and had issued a service bulletin (03-08-111-002B) addressing the problem. After receiving authorization, the dealer installed running boards at no cost to me. The bulletin also included repainting of the damaged areas if necessary.
  • jbarnesjbarnes Posts: 1
    What happened? I've got the exact same problem with a 2004 Buick Rainer...
  • musicman1musicman1 Posts: 2
    The paint chipping on the protruding front edge of the rear wheelwells is caused by gravel and other debris thrown by the front tires. The running boards seem to do a good job preventing the problem. I also installed front and rear mud guards for further protection and to keep the lower body panels behind the rear wheel wells cleaner and less prone to damage. Good luck.

  • I have... had a 2002 blue Bravada. I bought it in Nov of 01.I had planned to keep this car for ten years. I paid off the entire car 6 months ago. Its really nice not having to make payments anymore, BUT i had no choice but to get rid of it.
    brief history, 4 months after owning the car with 5000 miles, the engine died.. they had to replace the entire engine, that same year, all the door panels were falling off, in the first year the car was in the shop 11 times, the second year 8 times. And till the very last day of ownership every now and then while backing up or making a sharp turn a loud banging sound that nobody could fix. the dealership told me the engineers were getting a solution.. that was 4 yrs ago. the rear window wiper only worked when it felt like it. forget about the water. Just really a big mess. 36,000 is alot of money for a car that lasted me only 4 of the 10 yrs.This past year i spent 795 dollars to replace ???? not sure they were big, round, heavy, kind of looked like a big washer./. im sorry, i cant remember. the one thing i do remember was the independent mechanic who did the work said, the parts that OLDS used were horse S#@$#@ and cheap, and it should have never worn out at 50,000 miles. in 05 it was in the shop 5 more times, 4 times because of really bad rattle that happened every so often, that nobody could fix, just kept finding other things, and hearing mechanics say, "i am surprised to see that part go?!". "that should not go at 50,000 miles,, "they used cheap parts" finally 2 weeks ago, i took it back to dealer. i said, keep this dam thing here until you find the problem. the next day i get a call, they had not even got to the rattle problem yet but told me the car needs two new wheel cost approx 2k with labor. never mind the rattle that is another story. I heard enough, traded the car in as is the following weekend for a 06 honda ridgeline. very different, my wife thinks im crazy but so far so good. the bravada was really comfortable, good look, ton of power. handled really well, good in snow, great speakers. Put the back seats down you have a nice, long wide, trunk, that helped me take a refrigerator to the dump and, 3 big couches& chair to the dump. at 60,000 i got 11.500 for the trade in, and ran. Its too bad, i intended to keep that car 10 yrs with no payments. but it was just one thing after another with this car. I also have 97 chevy blazer 145 miles, never had a problem with it.
  • 2002 Oldsmobile Bravada: For the life of me, I cannot figure out why ,when I cut the wheel hard to the left or right, like pulluing in and of of parking spaces at low speed, sharp corners, etc., the vehicle stutters on acceleration as if it can't overcome the resistance in the front CV joints. It's starts bucking and carrying on like something is seriously wrong and ultimately can not negotiate the delivery of torque to the hubs when the CV's are in a maxxed out turn. Other that that, driving in a straight line is fine. I went out on some loose gravel and matted the throttle to ensure the wheel-slip traction control was working. Good to go: with a fraction of a split-second, the transfer case locked in and sent power to the wheels. As far as I'm concerned, the mechanical operation of torque/motion delivery from the transfer case to the rear end gear box works like it should. The problem is turning in parking lots and sharp turns. What is going on here?
  • aachooaachoo Posts: 1
    My sister has a 2000 Bravada and it quits running when the fuel level gets down to 8 gallons. This leads me to beleave that there is a secondary fuel pump on this which picks up the fuel in the second half of the tank. Is this correct and can anyone advise??
  • My 2002 bravada is having the exact same problem as the one who talked about cutting the wheel hard to the left or right and pulling in parking spaces in slow speed . It sounds like the tires are rubbing when I make a sharp turn, but they aren't. So I told my dad (who was a mechanic for years) about it and he said to take it back to the dealer and tell them it is the power rack and pinion steering. So that is what I am going to try. I'll see if this is the problem!!!!
  • I have a 2002 Bravada and I love it to death which is where it might be headed if I don't get my suspension under control.
  • mkoempelmkoempel Posts: 4
    Have a 2002 with 60,000. Developed a shudder when turning right or left at low speed. Fix is explained in GM Document ID# 1242381. The problem is the encoder motor module in the transfer case. It needs replaced/reprogramed and the case flushed. Had it done and it runs great. Other than this problem the SUV has been great. In fact, I just came back from Florida and put a total of 5200 miles on with an averaged 19.4 MPG. :)
  • mkoempelmkoempel Posts: 4
    Have the answer to your problem. check out my posting # 52. That is your problem. Since the fix I have had no shudder when turning left/right into a parking spot.
  • mkoempelmkoempel Posts: 4
    Check out my posting # 52. Had the same problem. Since the fix, no more shudder when turning left/right at low speeds.
  • mnjoe1mnjoe1 Posts: 1
    I just bought a 2002 Bravada and it has the same problem that you had with the bad vibration/jamming at slow speeds while turning. Where do I find the document that you referred to in posting 52? (GM Document ID# 1242381)

    I would like to get mine fixed as well. Thank you, much appreciated. -Joe
  • mkoempelmkoempel Posts: 4

    The Olds dealer gave it to me. Would suggest you go to a dealer and give them that document number. Can't see why they would not let you see it or copy it.

    Not having the shudder anymore so it is the fix.

  • lindalululindalulu OrlandoPosts: 15
    I just got my 2000 Bravada fixed from this problem (I only have 59,000 miles on it). I had to replace the whole fuel pump module. The first time it happened, it seemed like I was out of gas. I found it to be kinda weird because I had just put 20 bucks in the day before. But this same day, my fuel gauge went haywire and just stayed where it wanted to. SO I tried to keep the truck full of gas. I would be driving down the road and the engine would just quit. But after letting it sit for about a minute, it would start again and would be ok until the next time. When I asked the manager at the dealership why the fuel pump would go out after only having 59,000 miles on it and he just said they go when they go......So $600.00 later all seems to be working fine.

    I am too also having that problem when pulling into or backing into a parking space and when the wheels are turned very sharp, it sounds like something is about to break. Hopefully it will last me until I can get that fixed later.
  • atfdmikeatfdmike Posts: 414
    You may have already gotten this info. but I thought it might be of general interest. In 1999 GM went to a mechanical differential for the full time 4 wd Bravada rather than the hydraulic that predated those vehicles. The dif. fluid turned out to not be :"slippery" enough at operating temps to allow the clutch pak to let the differentials compensate for the turning speeds. The listed part no. is now a readily available dif. fluid, blue in color from GM, that really does relieve the problem. You may have to have it changed twice over time in order to get the old style fluid completely purged from the transfer case. On the Bravado there is no transfer case control module or reprogramming necessary as referred to below. Just change the fluid.

    2002 Oldsmobile Truck Bravada 4WD L6-4.2L VIN S
    Vehicle Level Technical Service Bulletins Customer Interest Drivetrain - Shudder/Binding/Feels Like Stuck in 4WD
    Drivetrain - Shudder/Binding/Feels Like Stuck in 4WD
    File In Section: 04 - Driveline Axle
    Bulletin No.: 02-04-21-008A
    Date: February, 2003
    Shudder, Rocking Motion, Binding, Feels Like Vehicle is Stuck in 4WD (Crow Hop) When Turning at Low Speeds (Replace Transfer Case Encoder Sensor and Reprogram TCCM)
    2002-2003 Chevrolet TrailBlazer
    2002-2003 GMC Envoy
    2002-2003 Oldsmobile Bravada
    This bulletin is being revised to update the service procedure and incorporate the fluid exchange. Please discard Corporate Bulletin Number 02-04-21-008 (Section 04 - Driveline Axle).
    Some customers may comment that when turning, the vehicle feels like it is binding, or the vehicle feels like it is stuck in 4WD (crow hop), or that the 4WD system is not working correctly. A shudder type sensation is felt.
    Technician Diagnosis
    This intermittent condition may be difficult to duplicate. The potential is there at all times for the Bravada. The potential is only present in the Auto Mode of the transfer case with the TrailBlazer or Envoy.
    Important : It is extremely important to check all of the tires before repairs are attempted for these types of customer concerns. Mismatched tires may cause these type of customer concerns. Inspect the tires in the following areas:

    ^ Ensure that the tires are inflated to the recommended tire pressure as listed on the tire placard on the driver's door.

    ^ Use a tire tread depth gauge to determine the tread depth. The tire tread depth must be nearly equal on all four corners of the vehicle.

    ^ Ensure that the tires are all the same brand, size, and tread design.

    Important: Pay particular attention so that the proper parts are replaced. The parts terminology is somewhat confusing. You will be replacing the encoder (sensor) and gasket not the complete motor assembly.
    (Note: Bravada full time 4wd does NOT have the motor or encoder.)
    Currently, the General Motors Parts Catalog lists the following names:

    ^ Motor Asm, Trfer Case Encoder (This is the Encoder (Sensor). It looks like a donut with three (3) contacts on one side).

    ^ Gasket.

    ^ Actuator Asm, Trfer Case Four Whl Drv (This is the complete motor assembly consisting of the Motor and housing, the Motor Asm, the Trfer Case Encoder (Sensor), and the gasket).

    Use the following procedure to replace the Motor Asm, Trfer Case Encoder (Sensor) and Gasket.

    1. If the vehicle is a TrailBlazer or Envoy, place the 4WD selector switch in the 2 HI position.

    2. Raise the vehicle.

    3. Disconnect the wiring harness connector at the top of the transfer case.

    4. Remove the Actuator Asm, Trfer Case Four WhI Drv (Motor) mounting bolts.

    5. Remove the motor from the transfer case and set aside.

    6. Position an oil drain container into position under the transfer case drain plug. Remove the drain plug and allow the transfer case to drain.
    7. Position the motor on a work bench and you will see four retaining tabs that retain the gasket to the motor. Release the tabs to allow removal and discard the gasket.

    Important: Gently lift and tilt the sensor toward the wiring connector wiring to disconnect it. You will notice the two wires to the motor. The red and black wires go to an internal connector within the motor housing. The black plastic connector for these wires does not have a locking tab and is easily disturbed.

    8. Lift/pry the sensor from the motor shaft. Disconnect the sensor from the wiring harness.

    Important: Look at the motor where you just removed the sensor. You will notice the Hex" in the casting where the new sensor will seat when properly installed.

    9. Connect the wiring harness to the sensor.

    10. Gently insert a suitable tool along side the red and black wires and press down on the black plastic connector to ensure the connector is in the proper position.

    11. Properly align the key way of the sensor on the shaft and install the sensor. Ensure that the hex on the sensor fits in the hex of the casting.

    12. Install the new gasket assembly.
    13. Inspect the positioning of the gasket and the motor shaft. If necessary to align them as shown, perform the following steps.

    ^ Connect a fused jumper to the transfer case encoder motor connector red wire and the other end to a positive battery terminal.

    ^ Connect another jumper to the transfer case encoder motor connector black wire and momentarily touch the other end of this wire to the ground terminal of a battery. This will cause the motor shaft to turn to allow alignment as shown.

    Important: Inspect the encoder motor attachment face for the presence of the two (2) locating sleeves. If missing from the encoder motor, they need to be retrieved from the transfer case and reinstalled into the encoder motor before installation.
    14. Position the motor to the transfer case and install the retainers.
    Tighten the bolts to 16 N.m (12 lb ft).

    15. Apply pipe sealant, P/N 12346004 (Canadian P/N 10953480), or equivalent, to the drain plug threads. Install the transfer case drain plug.


    Tighten the plug to 27 N.m (20 lb ft).

    16. Refill the transfer case with 1.8 L (2 qts) of Auto Trac II Transfer case lubricant, P/N 12378508 (Canadian P/N 10953626).

    17. Apply pipe sealant, P/N 12346004 (Canadian P/N 10953480), or equivalent, to the fill plug threads. Install the fill plug.


    Tighten the plug to 27 N.m (20 lb ft).

    18. Lower the vehicle.

    19. Connect the Tech 2(R) and use SPS reprogramming to reprogram the transfer case control module (TCCM) with TIS software version 11, released October 2002 or newer.

    Parts Information

    Parts are currently available from GMSPO.

    Warranty Information

    For vehicles repaired under warranty, use the table.

  • I have a 97 Olds Bravada. When I step on the gas, and right when I let off the gas, I hear a "chirping" noise. Almost sounds like a bird. Anyone know what this might be?
  • I have a chirping sound everytime I hit the gas pedal but I have not noticed it when I go over bumps
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