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New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue #5461250 06/24/20 06:43 AM
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 1,215
dja4260 Offline OP
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I purchased a 05 suburban from my grandfather. It has 68k, 4x4, leather, dvd system for the kids, in good condition. It's going to allow us to travel safely with our growing family, and tow our 2500lb boat with ease. I know that he paid 44k for it new.

The one issue that I'm aware of is the air ride suspension light just turned on.

Not knowing the extent of the issue, and as the vehicle is 15 years old, I saw for less than $600 I can purchase a "2000-2006 Chevrolet Suburban 1500 4 Wheel Air Suspension Conversion Kit (GC14F)" from outfits such as: https://www.strutmasters.com/ and many others...

If the issue is significant/expensive, I don't want to keep dumping money into an air ride system.

Does anyone have experience with this sort of replacement set up? It appears to be the most cost effective method to remove an old air ride system from the mix.

Thank you!


2013 Hyundai Elantra Gt Hatch 6 spd
2005 Toyota Highlander V6
1997 HD Sportster
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461254 06/24/20 06:50 AM
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GMguy84 Online Content
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Common issue there's a air bag system and they ALWAYS go out. My brother has a 05 Escalade had same issue


You can spend the $$$$$$$ to fix it with correct air shocks or get a bypass module, stronger rear springs and some regular shocks. Few years ago I had a LOADED 01 Suburban LT with the air ride suspension. I replaced with regular stock shocks and bypass resistor


And congrats on the Suburban, I have 2 myself in my fleet thumbsup


Dave

Last edited by GMguy84; 06/24/20 06:52 AM.

01 Silverado 1500HD Shell RGT 5W30/XG3675

01 Suburban 1500 Mobil 1 Truck/SUV 5W30/XG3675

02 Suburban 1500 Delo 400XLE 10W30/Protec166

82 Trans Am (KITT) M1 10W40HM/XG5
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461262 06/24/20 07:00 AM
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Rob_Roy Offline
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I would refresh the air ride components. It should be about the same cost as a coil conversion, and you will end up with a vehicle that doesn't "squat" with a load of camping gear in it. It should be about the same cost either way.

My dad has had 5 Suburbans, and he really enjoyed the one with air ride that was always at the right ride height.


2016 Ford Expedition EL Platinum
2016 Ford Expedition XLT
1999 Ford F350, V10
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461294 06/24/20 07:48 AM
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Bryce Offline
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I had a Yukon XL with the air ride suspension and it leaked. I bought a replacement from Arnott for a good price and the shocks had a lifetime warranty. Make sure you replace leaking shocks soon because leaking shocks will cause your air compressor to burn up and then you get to spend $200 or so to replace that too.

Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461460 06/24/20 12:28 PM
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cpayne5 Offline
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I'd diagnose the current issue and go from there. It may be something cheap to fix.

If the fix is more involved, then I'd definitely consider replacing the system with a conventional set of shocks and beefier springs. It's the best long term solution, IMO.

I had an '05 Suburban with the Autoride suspension. It was great for towing and vacations. Load it down with stuff and/or a trailer and give the compressor a few seconds and the tail end was level. Great system when it works. Near the end of my ownership, a leak developed in my system somewhere, so the compressor was cycling more than I liked. My cheap fix was to throw a set of airbags in the coil springs to give the air system a little help. As a bandaid, it worked well.

Any pics of the beast? smile Does yours have the AWD transfer case? Ours had every option box checked when it was ordered, though I wish the AWD was not. If yours has this transfer case, be mindful that it does not take the autotrak fluid, if you choose to service it. It's a Borg Warner 44-82, I believe.

Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: cpayne5] #5461514 06/24/20 01:49 PM
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GMguy84 Online Content
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Originally Posted by cpayne5
I'd diagnose the current issue and go from there. It may be something cheap to fix.

If the fix is more involved, then I'd definitely consider replacing the system with a conventional set of shocks and beefier springs. It's the best long term solution, IMO.

I had an '05 Suburban with the Autoride suspension. It was great for towing and vacations. Load it down with stuff and/or a trailer and give the compressor a few seconds and the tail end was level. Great system when it works. Near the end of my ownership, a leak developed in my system somewhere, so the compressor was cycling more than I liked. My cheap fix was to throw a set of airbags in the coil springs to give the air system a little help. As a bandaid, it worked well.

Any pics of the beast? smile Does yours have the AWD transfer case? Ours had every option box checked when it was ordered, though I wish the AWD was not. If yours has this transfer case, be mindful that it does not take the autotrak fluid, if you choose to service it. It's a Borg Warner 44-82, I believe.



AWD was only for the Denali and possibly Escalade. 95% sure never AWD offered on a Suburban


Dave


01 Silverado 1500HD Shell RGT 5W30/XG3675

01 Suburban 1500 Mobil 1 Truck/SUV 5W30/XG3675

02 Suburban 1500 Delo 400XLE 10W30/Protec166

82 Trans Am (KITT) M1 10W40HM/XG5
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: GMguy84] #5461552 06/24/20 02:54 PM
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cpayne5 Offline
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Originally Posted by GMguy84

AWD was only for the Denali and possibly Escalade. 95% sure never AWD offered on a Suburban


Dave


Hey, Dave. Yes, AWD was an option with RPO code NR4. Not sure what range of years it was available, but I know in 2005 it was - because mine had it. Like I said, it had the Borg Warner 4482 transfer case.

Here's the glovebox sticker from my Suburban showing NR4.
[Linked Image]

Last edited by cpayne5; 06/24/20 03:13 PM.
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461632 06/24/20 04:54 PM
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dja4260 Offline OP
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This vehicle was very well maintained by a dealer as my grandfather didn't care what the cost was. I do know that the trans was rebuilt, not sure why as he never towed, it has a new master cylinder, all new brake lines/calipers. Chicago salt is tough on vehicles. Body and interior is clean. It's at my fathers house 500 miles away. We're going to the lake for a week in July and I'll take it home then.


2013 Hyundai Elantra Gt Hatch 6 spd
2005 Toyota Highlander V6
1997 HD Sportster
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461835 06/24/20 09:33 PM
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cpayne5 Offline
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Originally Posted by dja4260
This vehicle was very well maintained by a dealer as my grandfather didn't care what the cost was. I do know that the trans was rebuilt, not sure why as he never towed, it has a new master cylinder, all new brake lines/calipers. Chicago salt is tough on vehicles. Body and interior is clean. It's at my fathers house 500 miles away. We're going to the lake for a week in July and I'll take it home then.


With a solid, rust free body, new brake lines, and a rebuilt trans you should be good to go. thumbsup

The biggest issue I had with ours was the rear A/C lines sprung a leak when we were on vacation, in Florida...in July. lol. Not fun! You'd think it would be easy to find a good A/C shop in Florida of all places, but I had no luck finding one. I ended up buying a rear line block-off kit, installed it in the driveway of our beach house, and had a local shop vac and charge for the ride home.

Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: dja4260] #5461871 06/24/20 10:27 PM
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GMBoy Offline
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Don't pay attention to all the doom and gloom! Keep the factory setup. Diagnose it and repair it. The compressor is a common failure but you can get a new one on rockauto for around $200 and install it in under 30min.

Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: cpayne5] #5461892 06/24/20 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by cpayne5


The biggest issue I had with ours was the rear A/C lines sprung a leak when we were on vacation, in Florida...in July. lol. Not fun! You'd think it would be easy to find a good A/C shop in Florida of all places, but I had no luck finding one. I ended up buying a rear line block-off kit, installed it in the driveway of our beach house, and had a local shop vac and charge for the ride home.


A lot of regular repair shops won't do rear AC lines on GM SUVs and vans because of the way the replacement part is sold. I guess to make them easier to ship and store, they are packaged as the two halves and have to be spliced together. The tool kit required to do this by the factory service manual procedure runs about $1500, so a lot of places just don't want to mess with them.


2002 Ford Ranger XLT | 3.0 V6 Auto 2WD | 241K miles
1994 Ford Explorer XLT | 4.0 V6 Auto 4X4 | 256K miles
Re: New vehicle: 2005 Suburban 1500 w/ air ride issue [Re: 01rangerxl] #5462235 06/25/20 10:13 AM
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cpayne5 Offline
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Originally Posted by 01rangerxl
Originally Posted by cpayne5


The biggest issue I had with ours was the rear A/C lines sprung a leak when we were on vacation, in Florida...in July. lol. Not fun! You'd think it would be easy to find a good A/C shop in Florida of all places, but I had no luck finding one. I ended up buying a rear line block-off kit, installed it in the driveway of our beach house, and had a local shop vac and charge for the ride home.


A lot of regular repair shops won't do rear AC lines on GM SUVs and vans because of the way the replacement part is sold. I guess to make them easier to ship and store, they are packaged as the two halves and have to be spliced together. The tool kit required to do this by the factory service manual procedure runs about $1500, so a lot of places just don't want to mess with them.


Oh, I found a few shops that wanted to order the GM lines (for big $$$) and then charge me big $$$ for the install. But, a knowledgeable A/C guy (like our own Chris142 here), could have cut out the bad section and spliced in a fix. I did not find someone as capable as Chris142, unfortunately.

No way I'd replace hard lines with hard lines on that Suburban, anyway. If I'd have been home, I'd have simply ordered this and installed it myself: https://www.autocoolingsolutions.com/ac-lines/2005-suburban-rear-ac-line-replacement

Instead, while on the road without my lift and with a limited set of tools, I opted to install this in the driveway of the beachhouse: https://www.autocoolingsolutions.com/ac-block-off/2005-suburban-rear-ac-block-off-kit


Last edited by cpayne5; 06/25/20 10:15 AM.
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