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Ask GM Tech (Cam) Your Own Question
GM Tech (Cam)
GM Tech (Cam), Chevy Technician
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 29457
Experience:  GM Grand Master Technician 2007. 14 years experience.
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Question regarding 2004 Chevy Suburban Z71. 195,000 I have

Customer Question

Hello-
Question regarding 2004 Chevy Suburban Z71. 195,000
I have had a whining noise coming from somewhere. Can't pinpoint front or back.
The whining would be there in acceleration and deceleration. It would get louder as you touch the gas.
Also- it has a rubbing sound that would change as the wheels rotated.
I changed the rear differential fluid a couple of months ago, but this didn't help.
This week it made some random popping noises as I would begin to accelerate.
It also started making a grinding noise as I turn left. This noise sound similar to worn out brakes, but the brakes are fine.
Also, the vehicle wouldn't shift into 4lo. It would get the 4lo light flashing for 30 sec and then not engage 4lo.
I changed the transmission fluid and filter- about 12qts Dexron VI. (used the transmission cooler line to pump out all old fluid- 20 seconds at time. while adding new.)
Dropped pad and cleaned magnets- no large metal pieces. But lots of metal flake in the fluid.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

HI there, I am Cam. The noise was only worse when turning left over right? Have you looked at the wheel bearings? I suggest checking the wheel bearings. Lift the front end and grab the tire at the top and the bottom. Push and pull on the top and bottom of the time and see if you can feel any movement other than the flex of the tire. Also try turning the tire. You may year the noise if the bearing is bad enough. If you find something, replace the wheel bearing assembly.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I will check that right now.
However, the new grinding noise happens as soon as the vehicle is put into gear and not moving.I'll let you know about the wheel bearing in 10 minutes
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

Ok, does it matter what gear the transmission is in?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
ok-
jacked up front end and no play in the wheel.as far as which gear- it seems to happen as soon as it is in D.
Shifting back to N stops it.
Usually no grind in RWhen I was backing down off ramps I needed to use 4LO - 2wd had a grind when I shifted into gear
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is a very very loud grinding noise when it happens
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

OK, how about in manual 3, 2 and 1?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
all forward drive gear have loud grinding sound as soon as I try to shift into those gears.
when i shift back into neutral it stops.
This all done while not moving
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
should i jack up the rear end and see if I can more closely identify where the loud grinding is coming from?
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

Yes, I Am thinking its inside the transfer case but more confirmation is always good.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
ok
i jacked up the rear end and identified that the loud grinding clanking noise is coming from the rear end.
even with the brakes on- when i would shift into gear (any forward gear) the loud noise would start and the rear wheels would start shaking pretty violently even though they were not rotating.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I guess its in the rear end.
What should I do to diagnose it further?
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

Sounds like it. Lets take the diff cover off and look inside there. e

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
ok, i will be pulling it into garage and open up differential, but that will probably be tomorrow.What should i look for?What parts should I replace in the rear end while I have it apart?
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.
Will be looking for any metal floating around in the system, any dear teeth missing or anything like that. Tomorrow we can follow up, but I would like to offer you the opportunity for a phone call which will include you texting me any pictures you can take of the system and need discussing the results with you before we go too far. Is this something you'd be interested in?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have ordered a replacement rear end from a salvage yard to swap out.
It is coming out of a same as what I currently have 3.73 (GT4) and Posi trac (G80) and no brake active brake control.How difficult is it to swap out the rear end assemblies?
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

It will be very easy then. Use the jack stands to support the vehicle then jack the axle up a bit. Take the shocks off and release the jack slowly to release the springs. Do this after taking the driveshaft, brake cables and brakes off.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That sounds goodDo you have any links to detailed instructions for the rear end assembly swap?
This will be the first rear end I have replaced myself and would appreciate any info to help me be more efficient. (trial and error is great, but in this heat anything that will minimize the overall time under the vehicle would be helpful)Thanks again
Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

sure, let me put something together for you.

Expert:  GM Tech (Cam) replied 1 year ago.

Removal Procedure

  1. Raise the vehicle.
  2. Place jack stands or utility stands, at the front-end of the vehicle.
  3. Support the rear axle with jack stands.
  4. Remove the tire and wheel assemblies.
  5. Disconnect the rear axle vent tube.
  6. Disconnect the wheel speed sensor connector.
  7. Remove the propshaft.
  8. Disconnect the left-rear park brake cable from the rear axle.
  9. Disconnect the right-rear park brake cable from the rear axle.
  10. Remove the caliper assemblies from the rear axle.
  11. Remove the stabilizer shaft from the rear axle.
  12. Remove the crossover brake pipe from the rear axle.
  13. Remove the coil springs.
  14. Disconnect the track bar from the rear axle.
  15. Disconnect the lower control arm from the rear axle.
  16. Disconnect the upper control arm from the rear axle.
  17. Remove the rear axle assembly from the vehicle.