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Dave Nova
Dave Nova, Chevrolet Technician
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 19450
Experience:  ASE Master Certification. GM World Class Certification
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2004 suburban: fuel gauge..the sudden now sits..straight down..eratic

Resolved Question:

2004 suburban fuel gauge all of the sudden now sits past full pointing straight down. Not the same problems I read about eratic operation -just dead. ???
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  Dave Nova replied 6 years ago.
The problem is a malfuncitioning fuel gauge. The IPC displays the fuel level as determined by the PCM. The IPC receives a class 2 message from the PCM indicating the fuel level percent. The fuel gage defaults to empty if:
  • The PCM detects a malfunction in the fuel level sensor circuit.
  • The IPC detects a loss of class 2 communications with the PCM

Since the gauge does not read empty, it is not a problem with the signal to the gauge.

To fix this problem, the gauge cluster will need to be replaced.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.





The rest of the cluster is OK, Replace the entire cluster? I've read online about the steppe motor, could it be that?


How would i test the system to isolate the root cause?

Expert:  Dave Nova replied 6 years ago.

Sorry for the confusion. IPC stands for instrument panel cluster.

PCM stands for powertrain control module-or-engine control computer.


The problem is most likely the stepper motor within the gauge cluster. These are not serviced, even at the dealer level. The entire cluster is normally replaced. There are some companies that rebuild the clusters, several of them sell on ebay. You can get a replacement cluster starting at around $150 on ebay with the correct mileage already programmed in.

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