NHTSA queries Chevy, GMC Pickup Trucks over Brake Line Corrosion

By Joel Arellano | April 06, 2010
If you own a model year 1993 - 2003 Chevy or GMC truck, you may want to check out this post. Earlier this month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration declared it is officially investigating roughly six million 1999-2003 Chevrolet Silverado, Tahoe, Suburban, and Avalanche pickup trucks, and their GMC twins: the 1999-2003 Sierra, Yukon, and Yukon XL. The NHTSA says it has received 110 owner complaints of brake line corrosion in the above named vehicles. Burst lines could result in the sudden loss in braking strength, increased pedal travel and stopping distances. The agency has opened two inquires into the matter General Motors says it is aware of the investigation and is working with the federal agency to address the matter. “We are aware of it and we are cooperating,” said GM spokesman Alan Adler. via Motor Trend
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30 comments
joco Yo
joco Yo

Lost brakes now two times in my 2002 Chevy Avalance due to corrosion on the brake lines. Luckily, both times I was stopped at an intersection and did not kill anyone. Any updates from the NTSB? I will go ahead and file a complaint myself. I have spent over a $1000 being ripped off on two partial brake line repairs but should have replaced all the lines the first time. A GM Dealer quoted me $3000 to replace all the lines and claimed they have to drop the gas tank in order to perform the repair correctly....I tought this was a crazy price!

Jeff French
Jeff French

2003 chevy tahoe 80k miles , line burst without warning, brought to get replaced and the mechanics at 3 shops said it is a known problem and all lines for brakes and gas are ready to go, over 1000 dollars repairs , so my truck sits there waiting for a recall

john d
john d

ladies and gentlemen hi .for about 35 years i was an g.m owener of trucks .never in the pas i have a serius problem but when i have purchase the 2004 siera 1500 from the firts month i have problem with wind noice inside the cap i have take the truck to the dieler and never fix the problem i learn to leave with that. this pas november i experience some very straing problem i start to loose untifreez and no dieler or any mechanick can find when the untifreeze when ,the engine was very dried ,the hoses not leaking , but when i start the truck for about 30 seconds i see light blue smoke coming out of the exsost pipe after 30 seconds it was o.k but i was loosing untifreeze every 200 miles i have to put 1/2 galon inside the tank. all mechanick who inpect the truck say i need new engine ,or to find use engine the coast new was $8.000 use was aprox $3.500 so what i dit i when to boy new truck not g.mc this time but ford i hope to have good lock with ford

brake line rust
brake line rust

I replaced all the rotten brake lines on my 2000 chevy van after loosing my brakes coming down a hill into town good thing my ebrake worked! Now I just replaced the brake lines on my 03 sonoma that were all rotted out I used nickle copper alloy lines. Nice job GM, cut corners when it comes to safety items like brake lines. I have a 97 Acura with 260k and the brake lines are like new what does this say about GM quality, yea it speaks volumes. I hope the NTSB has a recall on these. I may not help me but it will help others.

Frank
Frank

I have never owned any thing but GM products and I worked for GM Dealers I own a 2004 buick A 2006 Cadillac and A 2003 GMC 2500 with 70,000 miles so far the brake line rusted through several times in several locations and the front & rear bumper rusted through I paid for all the repairs my self and the vehicle is under warranty (yuk yuk ) no dealer will help me because GM will not pay the warranty claims and the dealer will get stuck with the cost next stop is the ford dealer I need a vehicle i can count on, I pull a horse trailer and can't take the chance with this truck

fred porter
fred porter

replaced all lines on my 1999 silverado with stainless after they rusted complely through. wife came home last night 2000 impala lines failed rusted through. gm sucks will never purchase again and i have 4 chevys right now and that is all i have ever owned. iam done with junk

Matt
Matt

Own a 2000 GMC Sierra. Corossion underneath is incredible, everything seems to be effected. Many other vehicle models made in 2000 do not corrode at this rate, even in salt belt states, so if that's a GM excuse save it because we're not buying it. Replaced all brake lines and connections from masters to rear with stainless. Replaced all shocks due to severe corrosion, fuel tank ring due to severe corrosion, brake plate backings simply disappeared due to complete corrosion. Frame is a mess and peeling off in thick layers. Leaf springs and fuel tank straps severely corroded as well. At the very least, I can't believe the NHTSA has waited so long to recall the brake line and fuel tank strap corrosion issues, guess not enough fatalities. GM completely failed in their corrosion specifications. Despite paying top dollar for a pickup you figure they would spec stainless brake lines, insignificant cost for the price of these trucks.. Never consider a GM vehicle again, hope they improve after they been bailed out.

Sam
Sam

But a real truck next time.... Toyota Tundra. Made in Texas.

Bliko
Bliko

I own a 2004 Silverado 1500 with ~63k miles. First, my rear brakes went at ~28k miles. The dealer at first tried to say it was a wear item & not covered under the warrantee. I convinced them rear brakes should never go before the fronts and that I have never needed brakes before 60k miles. The front brakes went at about 36k miles. I had to do a four wheel brake job again at about 54k miles. At 61k miles my brakes started pulsating at low speeds like the anti-lock brakes were kicking in when I would slowly come to a stop. I was told that the sensors were detecting a bad wheel bearing and that it needed to be replaced. Turns out that the bearings are now part of a hub assembly. Chevy wanted almost $800 to do one wheel. My local guy did both front hubs for under $600 & used Moog hubs. Now at 63k miles my brake pedal went to the floor at a red light. My local guy checked it out and showed me my brake lines. ALL of them were severly corroded. Another $1000 to replace them all and the wheel cylinders which also needed replacing. I'm 61 years old & I've owned more than 30 vehicles in my day. I have never owned a vehicle with brake problems anything like this. And I've owned some pretty bad vehicles in my day including a Dodge Omni and a Yugo! GM should be ashamed of themselves.

don kenner
don kenner

I have a 2003 chevy silverado 2500. I was going down the turnpike towing my 30' trailer, when i had to stop the pedal went to the floor. I hit my trailer bakes and emergency brake stopping short of hitting a compact car that cut in front of me. I edged to the side off the road looked and fluid was dripping,smelled it BRAKE FLUID. Had to be towed truck and trailer both cost $400.00 Found out brake lines are rusting all estmate $1000.00 to replace all. This should be a recall found out many american made trucks are doing the same thing Ford Chrysler Chevy

fawgcutter
fawgcutter

Gave up when the second set rusted through. Replaced them with stainless versions from Inline Tube of Shelby Twp. Michigan. The dealer who did the job liked them and are now recommending them for out of warranty repairs. Held up well so far. Now if I can find a more durable replacement for that #@&! fuel pump.

Dave
Dave

Hi my name is on my email address. I am a mechanic in Buffalo NY. If you are thinking GM or any car make will warranty this or anything that isn't covered you will wait a long time. I have been replacing brake lines fuel lines; trans cooler lines; power steering lines; radiators; oil pans; control arms; frames and anything else that doesn't get protected from salt wash and freeze thaw cycle. After your car{doesn't matter weather its Malibu or Mercedes} is 3 yr old GM doesn't care how much of your car has disintegrated. In fact it is what keeps the economy going. You need a new truck in their eyes.

Paul
Paul

I have a 2003 3500 long box crew 2wd (the Blue Whale). First new vehicle I've ever purchased, figuerd to be the last...but, problems from the get go. First, the nattery went dead every month if it wasn't driven daily.. now they say it may have been the ABS pump running on with the key off (no noise though), originally, I was told that it was the "battery saver circuit", which took more power than it saved. My brakes were perfect until this Spring, had a little scraping noise, pedal was fine, stopped straight etc. Then I lost all brakes and found a rusted out line. 2 others were just as bad so I replaced 3. Then I found that the drivers rear brake had hung, burned the rotor off the hub (and the brakes never acted bad At All!), replaced rotor and pads all the way around. Now I'm told the rear brakes always hang on these trucks, both rears have a tendency to be really hot after a short drive. The ABS light is on. Considering removing the ABS system completely, I'm old enough to remember NO ABS and I never had a problem self modulating the brakes to keep from skidding and loosing it! GMC owes me big time for this. I thought this was a perfect truck, runs and drives like a dream and the 8.1 makes it fast as a sports car!

John
John

Has there been a recall from GM for this matter? I have a 2003 3500 Series and had to replace the brake lines and calipers costing $4200. Last summer the Transmission cooling lines corroded for a cost $2000. This truck has less than 22000 miles on it. I contacted GM and was told that corrosion is part of life. I was also told that I do not drive it enough. I have had to replace the brakes on this truck four times since I bought it new. I replaced the rear brakes last February and had to replace the pads again. I put on less than 1000 miles. GM still hasnt given me a good answer.

Frank
Frank

Brakes blew less than 60k miles. replaced both lines from master cylinder to abs box.. when i was bleeding the air out blew another line inside left front wheel well.. Dealer estimate 700-1000 dollars to replace them all.. A HELPFUL HINT...If you have a dealer make repairs you can be re-imbued when Re-call is issued.. Frank- West Virginia..

kamrowski
kamrowski

This problem is not limited to gm products. My dodge ram and others I know have also had brake lines rust through (usually at the frame strap location) thankfully I didn't get in a crash as a result!!!!!!

Ed
Ed

I guess not enough people have died because of these brake like problems..This is my second repair and ALL lines are now shot..Between the brake lines and the lower part of the bodies rusting off 2000-2004 trucks GM needs to pay while people are not dieing..

BADMAD 55
BADMAD 55

Have a mint always maintained never plowed 50k miles Z71 Silverado 2005.I even wash underside of truck.This truck has rusted out brake lines burst in driveway imagine what could have happened in a panic stop. GM cut corners and used cheap brake lines. THEY REALLY SHOULD RECALL THESE TRUCKS AND MAKE GOOD ON THIS. Also look at the bottom inside of your doors everyone Ive seen is starting to rust. This truck cost big money and should last . My 1998 FORD RANGER 260K had no rust problems.

rthomas186
rthomas186

Have a 2004 Chevy Silverado P/U my brake lines went to the floor only to find out that my brake line rusted out and the fluid ran out. Only 45,000 miles and brake line gone???

J. Jennings
J. Jennings

I own a 2006 Silverado and the brake line rusted out at 20,000 miles....

norb kendall
norb kendall

My brakes went out and I found the brake lines are all corroded I am getting it towed to be repaired. I only have 62000 miles on this 2000 gmc sierra.

Barney
Barney

94 1500 lost brakes at a stop light today made it home on front brakes line rusted out at frame over rear wheel pita to replace 98000 miles baltimore

Vernon
Vernon

Has GM stepped up to take care of this yet? NHTSA and GM have been looking at it, but I havn't heard anything on a recall yet. I just replaced a third rusted line after a third close call of not being able to stop due to a line blowing out due to rust. I have an 83 3500 and the lines on that are in better shape than what is on my 03 pickup that I'm have the problems with.

nicky
nicky

I HAVE A 2000 GMC SAVANA 3500. IT IS A BOX VAN . ALL THE BRAKE LINES ARE RUSTED . IS THERE A RECALL .PS WHERE CAN I GET STAINLESS STEEL LINES . THANKS

harlacan
harlacan

I found out the hard way the my 2000 GMC Sierra brake lines are corroded as I was driven down a small hill and had to stop for a school bus and the pedal went to the floor...once stopped, I pulled over and discovered brake fluid leaking on the ground when I pushed on the brake pedal. Aside from a rusted out truck that will not pass the next state inspection...I will never buy another GM vehicle.

brakerecall007
brakerecall007

I had a 95 yukon and still have a 98 pick-up,the brake lines blew out in the same place on the frame rail;further more i know several other people that this has happen to.The right thing for GM is to use some of there bail-out money and make this an official RECALL!Before someone is killed or perhaps that is what has to happen,sad!

ahill261
ahill261

I have a 2004 (built in 2003) GMC K3500 dually and pull a 15000 lb fifth wheel. Last August I blew a corroded brake line and again this August I blew another part of a brak line. It cost $1400 last summer and don't know about this one (being repaired now). I'm moving over to stainless steel lines. I haven't heard if GM will pick up any cost yet!

shusheemee
shusheemee

I have a 1993 Silverado as well, brake line rusted through. Glad it was in the driveway when I noticed it. Anything I can do to check or get on the recall list?

sdobsey
sdobsey

I have the same rig and the same problem. Is there actually a recall or what. What happens if you fix the problem and there ias a recall does that void it? Thanks Sue

gary6457
gary6457

I HAVE A 93 CHEVY P/U 1500 MY BRAKE PEDDLE WENT TO THE FLOOR. I CHECK THE REAR BRAKE LINE THAT RUN ALONG THE CHASSIES AND IT WAS CORROSED WITH A HOLD IN THE LINE. I just check it out on 4-12-10 then i read this. Anything i can do. thanks Gary

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