The Chevrolet Avalanche 1500 is a cross between a pickup truck and an SUV, making it a very reliable vehicle. However, it is not perfect and in this post we will tell you what are the common Chevrolet Avalanche faults.
Owners have reported several issues that have arisen in their beloved Chevy Avalanche 1500 trucks. Keep reading this post and find out what is the cause of the failure and its possible solution.
How good is the Chevrolet Avalanche?
The Avalanche potentially offers great value for those looking for a dependable truck that doesn’t typically take the kind of abuse that many other trucks would.
A small bed in the rear and a full-size interior with a powerful engine helped make the Avalanche a popular solution for many people’s transportation needs.
Common failures of the Chevrolet Avalanche
General Motors (GM) produced the Avalanche from 2002 to 2013 and sold many models. Two generations offer many options for potential buyers. Next, we will tell you the most common problems reported by the owners of this vehicle.
1. Excessive oil consumption
The biggest problem Chevy Avalanche owners have cited is excessive oil consumption. Although it is one of the worst common Chevrolet Avalanche failures, this problem does not mean that the engine is leaking.
It means the engine is consuming oil, often burning it or allowing oil to leak into parts of the engine, such as the crankcase. Almost any model year of the Avalanche could be prone to excessive oil consumption. The same could be said of virtually any vehicle.
But with the Avalanche, there could be some underlying issues that are causing you to notice a relatively high level of oil consumption.
Possible causes and solutions
A bad piston ring is usually the main cause of excessive oil consumption in almost any engine. And the problem can affect more than one piston.
A compression test can help determine which piston may have suffered minor damage or deformation over time. It can also help identify which pistons have bad piston rings.
Replacing the faulty piston ring is the easiest way to fix the problem. That’s something an experienced shady mechanic could do at home. But most Avalanche owners would probably take it to a repair shop.
If the Avalanche is under warranty, the manufacturer’s warranty may cover the cost of replacing the piston rings.
The following are some suggestions to address excessive oil consumption in your Chevy Avalanche.
Some Avalanche owners simply drive their trucks 3,000 to 5,000 miles without checking oil levels. Others only check the oil level occasionally. Both are errors that could result in damage to the piston rings.
It is necessary to check the oil level frequently for the best results. If the level is low, you should top it up with new oil right away. Virtually all vehicles consume at least some oil every two thousand kilometers.
If you think yours is consuming more than normal, a compression test could identify a leaky piston and bad rings. Once identified, you can replace the rings and pistons if necessary to restore full compression and engine power.
With the compression restored and the engine running smoothly again, all you have to do is keep an eye on the oil level and change it regularly.
2. Cracked instrument panel
A cracked dashboard or instrument panel would clearly not affect mechanical systems or performance. But it will affect the value of the vehicle. Its roomy interior is one of the Chevy Avalanche’s most popular features. And it has a significant effect on its value.
Likewise a cracked instrument panel makes the interior look aged and run down. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent a cracked dashboard or to fix the problem if it occurs.
Possible causes and solutions
A dashboard cracks when the plastic dries out and becomes brittle. Exposure to hot sun can cause it to expand and crack in the heat. You know how hot the inside of a vehicle can be when the outside temperature is high.
The cabin temperature can rise rapidly and become unsafe for passengers or pets that may remain inside. Although the plastic and composite materials that make up a dashboard are generally durable, they are prone to damage.
The heat inside the vehicle on a sunny day can accelerate the wear of the dashboard and cause one or more cracks to occur.
You could replace the dash, but the cost can be very expensive. You can also buy a cover that hides the crack. But it would be better to buy a dashboard cover before the damage occurs and use it to keep the hot sun off your dashboard.
Many parts suppliers also sell sealants that can match the color of the dash and fill in cracked surfaces in the dash.
3. The tailgate does not open
The Avalanche is known for its adjustable bed and the ability to carry a wide variety of loads. Unfortunately, the tailgate sometimes doesn’t work. Many owners say they lose the ability to open the tailgate.
A faulty tailgate could make it impossible to carry many items. And it will make it more difficult to adjust the configuration of the bed for different types of load.
Possible causes and solutions
The tailgate handle is prone to breaking and making opening the tailgate impossible. The reason why the tailgate handle could break is due to the gradual development of small cracks and fissures in the tailgate handle.
The weakened handle ends up breaking in two, thus preventing the tailgate from opening. A tailgate that won’t open almost nullifies the utility of the bed. And a van with a bed that’s blocked by a tailgate isn’t nearly as useful as one with a working tailgate.
A relatively simple solution will fix the problem. You just need to install a new tailgate handle that is not as flimsy as the original item.
You can buy a stock tailgate handle or get an aftermarket pull that is especially durable. Removing the damaged handle and installing a new one is very simple and inexpensive.
4. Potentially dangerous airbag deployment
Airbags are designed to improve safety while traveling. The Avalanche has a nice complement of airbags that deploy in the event of an impact. Unfortunately, even an airbag could suffer from design flaws. And a faulty airbag can be dangerous.
That was the situation in more than 37 million Chevrolet models. Chevrolet recalled models to provide an effective solution, including the Avalanche.
Possible causes and solutions
There’s no secret to what makes the airbags in many Chevrolet models dangerous. Air bag maker Takata supplied Chevrolet with tens of millions of faulty air bags that could launch dangerous firecrackers when deployed.
Replacing Takata airbags with other locks will remove the potential hazard from your Avalanche.
The good and the bad of the Chevrolet Avalanche
Every car has its good and bad things to offer to its future buyers. After knowing the common faults of the Chevrolet Avalanche, it is good that you also know what good things this vehicle offers.
- The Chevrolet Avalanche is versatile, powerful, and provides passengers with a very comfortable ride. It seats five or six passengers and has four doors to allow for easy entry and exit.
- The first generation Avalanche shares the same proven, reliable and powerful 5.3-liter V8 that Chevrolet uses in the Suburban SUV.
- The Avalanche tows up to 5,100 pounds and can carry another 1,400 in bed.
- Generally poor fuel economy.
- Complicated modular system to adjust the length of the usable bed.
- The bulky design creates large blind spots and reduces visibility to the rear.
Its disadvantages are relatively minor and in some cases easy to correct. For example, a rearview camera that increases visibility to the rear is an effective solution to poor visibility behind the Avalanche.
What do the opinions say about the Chevrolet Avalanche?
Comments and reviews of the Avalanche often focus on its ride quality, comfortable interior, and powerful engine.
Although not a typical pickup truck, the Avalanche can serve as a truck or an SUV. You can haul impressive loads on a trailer and carry a fair amount in the bed and rear of the cab.
A flexible design allows it to accommodate a wide variety of loads, equipment, or gear you may need to carry.
Feedback is generally very positive for the Avalanche, which was based on the same frame and chassis as the Chevy Suburban and Cadillac Escalade.
So it has a very proven chassis and design as well as being durable. The Avalanche is also very reliable. Chevrolet produced two generations of the Avalanche. Model years 2002 through 2006 comprise the first generation of Avalanche trucks.
Consumer Reports says the first-generation Avalanche models have ” impressive acceleration ” and is “commendably comfortable and quiet.”
The second generation is just as impressively fast, powerful and even more comfortable.
Chevrolet marketed the Avalanche as a full-size truck with a cab that featured a panel in the center of the door that owners could fold down to create more cargo space.
The Avalanche offered buyers two V8 engine options. A 5.3 liter engine produced 285 hp. And an 8.1-liter Vortec engine produced 340 horsepower.
Rear-wheel drive is standard, and four-wheel drive was optional. And the Avalanche seats five or six passengers. It is considered a very reliable vehicle and benefits from the use of proven engine platforms that have a lot of aftermarket support.
Buyers of used models with relatively low mileage may be able to shop around and find a great deal on a truck that could last for many years to come.