Cleaning grounds help
My mechanic has passed away and I am getting warning lights related to ABS, Traction Control and service soon. I thought I might try to clean some ground connections. Where do I start? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Technical Writer for Internet & Print Media
I'm sorry to hear your mechanic died.
While it is true that bad grounds can cause problems with various electrical components in your car, if you have all those lights on at once, I'd, first, make sure your battery is in good condition and the cable ends are tight. Don't guess. If you are not sure of the battery condition, have it tested.
The next thing you need to do is find out what fault codes have been set by the modules which are turning on those warning lights.
Next, you need to obtain the fault codes which are set in the electronic brake and traction control module and in the ECM. See: Corvette Action Center Knowledgebase :: 1997 - 2000: Diagnostic Trouble Codes
...for a way to read the codes on a C5.
The location of the car's many chassis grounds are listed in the Factory Service Manual. if you are considering solving the car's ECBTM and ECM faults yourself, you need to buy those books.
Interesting that you bring up the battery. These lights came on when I picked up my car from the repair shop. They said my old battery would not start the car and they then installed a new battery. Can a new battery be bad?
Dennis "Fix" Fixsen
dba Fixvet Detailing Services, Springfield, MO
1998 Torch Red Coupe, Born 11-3-97, Adopted 2-18-04
VFW Life Member VN 70-71 4thINF & 101st ABN
Hey! Thats my post! Thanks for the complement! I always hang out in Corvette forum C5 Tech. This is my second post here.
Originally Posted by fixvet
The key to succesfully tracking down a C5 and or C6 issue is pulling up the DTCs and working from that information. Your C5 has a built in DTC reading software set and you can even pull the DTCs on the fly. Here my write up on that topic:
READING YOUR Engine Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC)
This procedure should be carried out any time you experience a problem with your C5. Most inexpensive store bought aftermarket code readers will ONLY read power train DTC’s. Reading the DTC’s with the C5 built in code reader will allow you to read ALL the modules in the vehicle.
The Diagnostic Display Mode is entered with the following procedure:
1) Turn on the ignition but don't start the engine.
2) Press the RESET button to turn off any warning messages. (i.e. door open, trunk open ect)
3) Press and hold the OPTIONS button
4) While holding OPTIONS, press FUEL button four times within a 10 -second period.
Initially, the on-board diagnostics go into an Automatic Mode which will cycle through each module and shows diagnostic codes in a pre-set sequence: PCM - TCS - RTD - BCM - IPC - RADIO - HVAC - LDCM - RDCM - SCM - RFA. All codes will be displayed for each module. ( i.e. PCM = 4 codes) If none are present in a given module, you will see No More Codes on the display.
There are two types of diagnostic codes, Current and History designated with a letter suffix, “C” or “H”. A current code indicates a malfunction is present in the module displaying data. A history code indicates a problem existed sometime in the last 40 or 50 ignition cycles. When not accompanied by a current code of the same number, it's potential evidence of a previous problem, now resolved, that was not removed by clearing the codes. More likely it's an indication of an intermittent malfunction.
Intermittent codes are the most challenging of the diagnostics. An intermittent code may have happened once, may have happened more than once but is inconsistent or may be happening on a regular basis but not at the time the codes are displayed. History codes can also be caused by a current malfunction in a system that is not operating at the time codes are displayed. An example is the rear window defogger which doesn't operate until the Body Control Module detects engine rpm. For history codes set by a module that does not operate with the key on and engine off, a special diagnostic tool called a Scan Tester is necessary to properly diagnose the malfunction.
Once the system has displayed all modules, it goes into the manual mode which allows selection of each module using combinations of Driver Information Center buttons. Manual mode can also be entered during the automatic sequence by pressing any button except E/M. Once the display shows Manual Diagnostics, select a module by pressing the OPTIONS button to go forward or the TRIP button to go back. Once a module is selected, a code is displayed, and if more than one are present; press GAGES to go forward or FUEL to go back.
To exit the diagnostic mode at any time, press E/M. If you want to erase codes in a given module, press RESET To reset the codes once in manual mode, press and hold RESET until it displays NO CODES Press OPTIONS to go to the next module. Repeat the steps until you have reset the codes in all the computer modules.
NOTE!! Only reset the codes IF you want to - it is NOT necessary to do this. Clearing a code does not repair a problem. You are simply erasing the evidence of it in the module's memory. If you clear the code/s, and extinguish the Check Engine Light, your emissions status ready will NOT allow you to pass an emissions test until you have completed the required driving cycles. There are a few body module DTC’s that if set will prevent the module from operating properly. Once the DTC is cleared, the module will return to full function. This is not true for power train DTCs.
If you have never read and cleared your codes, there will probably be a lot of old history DTCs. It is recommended that you clear your codes and see if any come back during a driving cycle. Those are the ones that you need to concentrate on diagnosing.
Once you have the codes, the next question is: What to do with the information?
First, consult the factory service manual. Any serious C5 Do-It-Yourself owner should invest in the Corvette Service Manual of the appropriate model year. The Service Manual is really a requirement if you want to understand and work on your C5.
NOTE and a WARNING. You can read the DTCs while the engine is running. I pull mine up all the time while driving.
WARNING. Don’t become distracted while reading DTCs while your driving and cause an accident!!!!! Use common sense and drive safe.
These are some very good C5 Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) explanation web sites!!! They also explain how to read the DTCs
Here are some very good sites that explain what DTC mean:
Make sure to include the H or C suffix when you post your DTCs!!
Please read and post your DTCs. If there are TONs of DTCs,,,clear them ALL and take the car for a drive. Post what comes back when the problem happens.
Bill is the man when it comes to C5 electrical issues. I would even call him a guru, he's the man who many go to when they have electrical issues. Trust me, a lot of people go to him.
I'm chasing one right now with my driver side window/lock controls.
If they did not torque the battery connections to the right amout it WILL cause problems.
That was my first lesson with mine.
Originally Posted by Putter
Originally Posted by Putter
My 2000 Corvette had the same problem , my problem was located on top of the right rear silencer. There is a cople of wires that goes from the frame or diff and back to some where ??? It was lying on the silencer and the insulation was gone. I repaired/taped and strapped these wires to the frame and voila no more problems whit ABS or TRAC .
The KEY to figuring out the cause of AH/TC/Antilock issues is to read the DTCs (without turning OFF the Ignition) and posting the results.
Post them ALL..... If you have tons of old history DTCs,,, get rid of them and start fresh!
So,,,,,,,,, What did you find wrong with your C5????????????
sorry to intrude, Bill,
I had dead battery symptom, and with help barely got her to start. At home, I hooked up brand new
Originally Posted by Bill Curlee
battery tender, & tightened up neg battery post with 8 mm wrench, then attached tender up.
It first charged up to 80%, then 100% charged for few days. I tried to start today, and it acted like it had barely charged the battery, but according to the Bat tender, it was 100% charged. I'm thinking now though, one or more, negative ground junction box is to blame, cause when I start to turn over, just click, and some humming noise with other rumbling noise in the back of the coupe, (could the poor ground cause the CD changer to start stop, several times cause that's where the clicking sound is coming from)????
thanks a million!!
99 C5 coupe.
Robert from CF as Zoso1951
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