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Dan, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 2270
Experience:  20 Year Factory Trained Current GM Technician
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2001 chevy impala: battery light in message center..wont start

Customer Question

2001 chevy impala displaying security, service vehicle soon, and battery light in message center and the radio says locked and sometimes it won't start at all..i have to undo the positive battery post to get this problem to go away but that does not seem to work u know how to fix this problem?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  Dan replied 7 years ago.



Sounds like a BCM (body Control Module) or a Ignition lock cylinder problem. You said the battery light is coming on. If it is coming on with the car running, and the alternator is charging, You probably have a faulty BCM. We see a lot of them on that year of impala. To make for sure you would have to pull codes out of the bcm and diagnosie those codes. If a BCM is at fault, It would need to be programed after replacement. So it would need to be done at a GM dealer or a shop that has the right scan tool. Let me know if this helps or if you need more information.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
do u know the price range i am looking at spending?
Expert:  Dan replied 7 years ago.

BCM runs about $200.00 so do Lock cylinders.


Labor from $100.-200. depends on the shop

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
does the bcm control the door locking also? i have to manually lock my doors because the remote entry or automatic locks won't work unless i replace the fuse but when the security light comes on the fuse will blow and i'm back at locking my doors manually.what if the car does absolutely nothing at all; i.e. no lights, no radio, no lights on the instrument panel, etc.. can the bcm control the car from not starting like it is completely dead??
Expert:  Dan replied 7 years ago.

Yes, The door locks are controlled by the BCM. With a BCM/ security issue, it can prevent the car from cranking.

Double check your battery cables, especially the positive side. Make sure there is no corrosion between the battery post and the cable.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
if there is corrosion how do u get it off?
Expert:  Dan replied 7 years ago.
The best way is to replace it. You can scrape it off but it usually comes back. Sometimes it is caused by a leaking battery.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
replace the post or the battery? if i have to replace the post would they have what i need at auto zone or another retailer for car parts?
Expert:  Dan replied 7 years ago.

Is it The factory battery?


Replace the cables if they are corroded. Replace the battery if it is leaking.

Dan, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 2270
Experience: 20 Year Factory Trained Current GM Technician
Dan and 4 other Chevy Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
ok thank u so much
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
thanks for you help! i took it to they chevy dealer here and they said all i needed was a new battery because it had low voltage and that was the reason it was doing what it was doing. he said no codes were coming out but i'm glad that is all it was. thank you for you help!

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