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GM instrument stepper motors

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by halfmile, Mar 15, 2013.

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  1. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
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    Location:
    Green Bay Wisconsin
    So when my gas gauge (05 Trailblazer) went buggy I just started driving on the odometer, filling up every 250 miles. The gauge would go to empty when I filled the tank, then get better a couple hours down the road.

    I got a letter from GM saying they would pay half of the repairs.
    The I found out the stealership wanted 700 bucks. I thought that was a lot for a gas tank sender unit so I did nothing.

    Last week I had my speedo stick on 20 MPH, even when stopped. I went to the
    TB/Envoy forum and found out the stepper motors (6 of them) control all the instruments and were not of good quality from new. There is a bettor one out there now, but Dealers don't sell them, since it's circuitry work to dissasemble the inst panel and solder in new ones.

    I'm guessing that's why the expensive repair estimate since they just want to put in a new cluster.

    Now that I'm smarter I want to order the steppers, but can't find what I think are trustwothey sources.

    I need the good replacements, not the chinese stuff that fails in a year. I would appreciate any comments.

    HM
     
  2. Harv Shell

    Harv Shell TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Morris, Il.
    Try the above for some good info at my SSR forum. Harv
     
  3. Dicksie

    Dicksie Member

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    Halfmile,
    You can send your instrument panel into Absolute Automotive and Accessories, http://www.gminstrumentcluster.com, when I just looked up this site for you, I saw that there seem to be other companies doing the same thing now. They send you a shipping label by email, fix the gauges you want fixed and send it back fixed with a lifetime warrantee the next day. My advice would be to have them repair all the motors in the cluster or whatever they recommend, they are good communicators. If I remember correctly, it cost me about $375.00. Removing and replacing the cluster is a no brainer. G M had not admitted they had a problem with these motors last year, but it has been going on for years.
    Dicksie Spolar
     
  4. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    Green Bay Wisconsin
    Harv, the link on your site was a good one, this guy even sells kits with colored bulbs if you want to change your instrument lighting.

    Dicksie, right. there are a bunch of guys rebuilding these.

    After 30 years in the electronic systems biz, should be easy. I think I will just replace all 6. Maybe I need some cool blue bulbs too, LOL.

    My hangup was where to get the darn things, and being sure they were the right ones. X27.168 is supposed to be a good number.

    Price shopping now, more links if anyone has them?

    HM
     
  5. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    There IS a recall. they want to replace the whole cluster, charge you 700 bucks, and you get compensated for one half. (50%)

    For a 40 dollar set of steppers and 2 hours at the most.

    The dealerships, in their defense, do not have the expertise to do discrete compnent replacement on the circuit boards.

    HM
     
  6. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
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    Location:
    Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
    Retired GM service manager speaking here.

    Keep in mind that the "S" in NHTSA stands for "safety." The government only gets involved in safety-related shortcomings, not quality-related ones unless it affects a majority of the vehicles of a given brand (not just one model) and in those cases, the Federal Trade Commission is the government agency that handles them. For example, in the mid-1980s the FTC required GM to pay for small-block Chevrolet engine camshafts because, in the FTC's opinion, the owner's manuals did not clearly explain why the engine oil and filter should be changed every three months or 3,000 miles, whichever occurs first, and an acid buildup in neglected oil caused sludge and wiped cam lobes. In fact, the information was there, just on a different page, and since customers can no longer be expected to read, GM bit a huge bullet.

    Manufacturers can issue their own "recalls" and GM uses the term Special Policy for theirs. Late last summer, our son took advantage of the fuel sending unit Special Policy on the 2006 Trailblazer SS he bought used in 2007 and his cost was $150 - I don't know where your dealer is coming up with $700 but perhaps the involved repair is different today.

    Chevrolet dealership service managers with good customer satisfaction survey scores, technician training that is up to date and a warranty cost per VIN serviced that is not excessive compared to their peers have the authority to handle repairs for retail customers out of warranty - the term is "goodwill adjustment." If you bought your vehicle new from a Chevrolet dealership, the condition is not one which you could have caused through misuse or lack of maintenance and the condition is a known product problem, you are a candidate for goodwill if the odometer reading is reasonable for the vehicle's model year - usually not over 100,000 - especially if you've had it serviced there. Goodwill adjustments may not cover 100% of the repair cost but anything beats nothing.

    Ask to speak with your dealership's service manager; if you strike out there and you bought the vehicle from that dealership, ask to speak with the dealer principle. No forward-thinking dealership owner is going to lose a customer over a repair if at all possible.

    If you get nothing from those contacts, call Chevrolet's Customer Assistance Center in Detroit. The person with whom you speak probably won't be able to authorize any financial assistance (unless they have a written policy on hand) but he/she will generate a "Customer Request for Assistance" that will be transmitted to your dealership overnight. The service manager will be required to contact you via telephone and attempt to resolve the issue. If he is unable to, he has to close the case "dissatisfied" which will prompt his district service manager to review it with him unless he calls his DSM for help before he contacts you.

    Keep in mind that GM is well aware that it costs them a lot less to keep an existing customer than to attract a new one.

    Ed
     
  7. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    I have an 06 GMC K1500 that I went through the exact same problem with. The entire instrument cluster was replaced under recall free of charge to me. Still a PIA but other than getting the truck to the nearest dealer 70 miles away it was free. I did that about two years ago.

    Good news is they seemed to have used better components in the repair than what the truck came with.

    Its worth talking to the dealer before you attempt other repair routes. BTW, I used a stop watch to estimate my highway speeds for about 6 months before I had enough and finally got the problem fixed - just a case of not wanting to deal with the dealer I guess.
     
  8. ljutic73

    ljutic73 Well-Known Member

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    I have an '06 GMC Envoy Denali with 120K miles on it and an '06 GMC Sierra SLT with 100K miles...no problems so far....
     
  9. timberfaller

    timberfaller Well-Known Member

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    Eastern Washington
    My last GM was a 92 Suburban the dash on it went south, they couldn't guarantee a fix and it would take two weeks R&R.

    Had GM stuck with individual gauges it would have been a simple fix. BUT no that is not acceptable anymore.

    It hurts the Dealership "shop" gouging on repairs.

    All I needed was a new oil pressure gauge. IN 1996 they wanted $1500 to do the R&R. Why so long? The dash had to be remove and shipped off to a rebuilder and the Shop Manager told me there was no guarantee it wouldn't do the same thing once it was back together.
     
  10. GW22

    GW22 Active Member

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    Keep driving that Govt Motors garbage.

    -Gary
     
  11. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

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    I changed my allegiance when GM told me they would no longer pay to repair or replace the VTi transaxle in my wife's Saturn Vue. That was a component that had an over-100% failure rate as most failed multiple times - ours was repaired three times and replaced twice in 108,000 miles. They even released a 10-year, 100,000-mile special policy on them. When they declined to pay for failure number five citing that the special policy expired at 100,000 miles, I arranged a meeting with the area's DSM. He finally agreed to extend goodwill one time, saying we both knew that the only way to permanently repair the transaxle was to replace the vehicle.

    When the 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty on the last replacement expired, I did just that - but not with another GM vehicle. After all the years I spent turning upset GM customers into loyal ones, I resented having to fight to get what I had been handing out with their blessings.

    Ed
     
  12. cbxchris

    cbxchris Active Member

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    Never again will a GM vehicle be bought by me.....
     
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stepper motor resets at a different location every time the truck is started