Archive for February 2012

Truck Issues – Fix It Right the First Time

Car Issues – Fix It Right the First Time

Service Know-How

10212.02D – Emerging Issues

February 9, 2012


To view Emerging Issues seminars:

Log in to, select Service Know-How/TECHAssist from the menu, select Emerging Issues, and then Searchable Streaming Video to choose the current Emerging Issues seminar or past programs.


ASE Computer-Based Testing Sessions

Beginning in 2012, the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) will offer all ASE certification tests only in the Computer-Based Testing (CBT) format. Test sessions are available in two-month windows, four times each year, starting with the first testing sessions in January-February 2012.


The Winter 2012 CBT dates are:

Online and Telephone Registration: January 10 – February 20

Testing Dates: January 17 – February 29

Testing Times: After registering, make an appointment for the testing date, time and location.


All ASE certification and recertification tests are offered as CBTs, which provide test takers advantages in scheduling, convenience, and speed over the written tests. More testing session choices will be available when reserving an appointment. Plus, when completing a CBT, test takers will receive their test results before leaving the test center.


The ASE computer-based certification tests will not be available to be completed online at home or at work. The tests are only offered in secure, proctored test centers in order to give everyone a fair, consistent, and reliable testing environment, where the identity of each person taking a test is also verified. There are currently more than 300 testing site locations. (Fig. 19)


Fig. 19


Visit for more information on the new enhanced CBTs as well as to find a test location near you.


To register, go to or call 1-877-346-9327.


Click here to for a video overview of the CBT process.



– Thanks to Rich Orbain

Unable to Learn Keys

On some 2007-2010 Cobalt and G5 models, it may not be possible to learn the keys to the Theft Deterrent Module after replacing the module and keys with new parts. DTCs B3031 (Security System Controller in Learn Mode) and/or B3935 (Transponder Authentication Error) may be set. The new Theft Deterrent Module shows zero new keys learned.


Before repairs, if communication with the original Theft Deterrent Module could be established, all keys must be replaced with new keys (no original keys can be reused).


Do not attempt new Theft Deterrent Module setup with the scan tool and do not SPS program the new module.


HYPERLINK = “” \l “N65675”


To set up a Theft Deterrent Module using new keys, install the new module, and then insert the first new key and rotate it to the Run/On position. Monitor the Security lamp on the instrument cluster (it will flash) and cycle the ignition off. Remove and reinsert the key, and then turn it back to the Run/On position. Use a scan tool to verify that one key is learned.


After verifying the key is learned, perform a 30 minute Vehicle Theft Deterrent relearn with the learned key. After the relearn is completed, additional new keys can be learned with the quick learn method.


– Thanks to Ernest Haller

Questions on Installation of GM Accessories

Dealer-installed GM Accessories include instruction sheets to aid with installation on most 2000-2012 GM passenger cars and light-duty trucks (excluding Saab). If an instruction sheet is missing, some GM Accessory installation instructions can be found in the appropriate Service Information. If the instruction sheet was not packaged with the GM Accessory, check the Service Information.


If a missing instruction sheet is not available in the Service Information, contact ParTech. In addition, technicians can contact ParTech with any questions regarding installation, parts, or diagnostic information.


Call ParTech at 1-800-433-6961 (in Canada, call 1-866-275-5832) and select the following:


For U.S and Canada (Car):

• Select prompt #1 for U.S. (Requires customer code and password) • Select prompt #2 for ParTech Main Menu • Select prompt #4 for Cars • Select prompt #3 for Accessory Catalog Group 21


For U.S and Canada (Truck):

• Select prompt #1 for U.S. (Requires customer code and password) • Select prompt #2 for ParTech Main Menu • Select prompt #5 for Trucks • Select prompt #1 for Light-duty Truck • Select prompt #3 for Accessory Catalog Group 21


– Thanks to Ernest Haller


GM Accessory Heated Seats

Some owners of 2007-2012 Avalanche, Silverado, Sierra, Suburban, Tahoe, and Yukon models may question if their GM Accessory heated seats will turn on during a remote vehicle start. The GM Accessory heated seats are not designed to turn on during a remote vehicle start.


– Thanks to James Will


Do Not Swap Control Modules

Do not swap control modules. It’s a word of caution that bears repeating as more new GM models are introduced with the Global Architecture electrical system.


These models now include:

• 2012 Sonic and Verano (and, in Canada, Orlando) • 2011-2012 Cruze and Volt • 2010-2012 LaCrosse, Regal, SRX, Camaro, Equinox and Terrain


The Global Architecture electrical system does not allow control modules to be swapped between vehicles. Swapping control modules will result in a no start condition on both vehicles and will damage both modules due to the new vehicle security code protocol (environment).


Do not swap the following control modules:

• Engine Control Module (ECM) • Radio • Body Control Module (BCM) • Electronic Brake Control Module (EBCM) • Sensing and Diagnostic Module (SDM) • Transmission Control Module (TCM) • Electronic Climate Control (HVAC) • Electric Power Steering • Hybrid Powertrain Control Module • Vehicle Communication Interface Module • Instrument Panel Cluster


– Thanks to Ernest Haller

Appearance of Low-Gloss Stripe Kits

The low-gloss stripes on 2010-2012 Camaros (Fig. 18) equipped with the low-gloss GM Stripe Package may have a cloudy or hazy appearance if polish or wax is applied onto the surface of the stripes. This condition may seem to disappear when the stripes are wet and then reappear as the stripes dry. The cloudy appearance is much more likely to be noticed on darker colored stripes. It does not occur on high-gloss stripes.


Fig. 18


TIP: The PDI sheet has a Special Inspection Note for vehicles with GM Stripe Packages that states to not use polish or wax on the stripes or the appearance will be distorted.


The stripes have been fully tested for exterior exposure and results verify that the surface appearance (color and gloss) will not change unless a foreign substance has been applied.


If polish or wax was applied to the low-gloss stripes, the polish/wax product will have to be removed in order to restore the original appearance of the stripes. Removing the polish/wax from the stripes also will remove the wax from any other surface it contacts. The vehicle will have to be waxed again without applying wax to the stripe surfaces.


To avoid damaging the stripe material, wax removal should be done using Dawn® dishwashing liquid soap. Place a couple drops of the dishwashing liquid soap in a bucket of water, and then use a sponge and the soap solution to wash the stripes. Thoroughly wash the stripes to eliminate the wax from the small “crevices” of the matte surface.


TIP: Use of other wax removal products may damage the stripes. This damage would not be covered under the GM warranty.


The success of this method is dependent upon the type of wax that was used and type of solvent, if any, that may have been introduced in any previous attempt to remove the wax. Solvent-based removers will damage the stripes.


– Thanks to Jeremy Richardson


Alarm Sounds when Starting the Vehicle

On some 2009-2011 Aveo and 2009-2010 G3 models, the vehicle alarm may sound when the vehicle is started with the key. The alarm cannot be disabled with the key or the Remote Keyless Entry transmitter.


It may require multiple key cycles to duplicate this condition. If the condition is duplicated, back out data line circuit 7020 from Instrument Cluster X2 pin 9 or Remote Control Door Lock Receiver pin 22. If the condition is gone, replace the instrument cluster. If not, continue with the appropriate diagnostics in the Service Information.


– Thanks to Ernest Haller

New Transfer Case Internal Design Changes

A There are some internal design changes that have been recently implemented on several transfer cases (RPOs NQF, NQG and NQH) on 2012 Silverado and Sierra trucks. The updated parts include the front case half assembly, high/low internal or ring gear, high/low clutch or range sleeve, high/low planetary carrier, and the input shaft.


It may be difficult to determine which design transfer case is in the vehicle, but there are several parts that can be measured to help identify them. The physical diameters of the case half ring gear and planetary gears and the input shaft gears have changed.


The first design input shaft gear has 56 teeth and an outside diameter of 91.4 mm (3.6 inches). (Fig. 16, A) The second design input shaft gear has 53 teeth and an outside diameter of 87.5 mm (3.45 inches). (Fig. 16, B)


Fig. 16


The first design front case half internal gear has 94 teeth and an internal diameter of 148.5 millimeters (5.85 inches). The second design internal gear has 91 teeth and an inside diameter of 142 millimeters (5.6 inches).


The first design planetary gear has 30 teeth and an inside diameter of 61.35 millimeters (2.4 inches). (Fig. 17, A) The second design has 29 teeth and an inside diameter of 60.2 millimeters (2.37 inches). (Fig. 17, B)


Fig. 17


The first design parts will continue to be available. Make sure that the correct parts are ordered when servicing one of these transfer cases. A 2012 vehicle could have either design, while a 2011 or earlier vehicle will usually have a first design transfer case. However, if the vehicle has had the transfer case replaced with a newer rebuilt assembly, the new assembly could contain second design components.


– Thanks to Dave Peacy and Ron Minoletti


Camaro Convertible Folding Top Repair

After completing a folding top repair on the Camaro convertible, check that the folding top plastic retainer strip is secure at the rear side rails. The sides of the folding top may become loose if the retainer strip is not fully seated into the rail or if the side tension cable is improperly positioned. This will result in a wind noise condition from the rear quarter glass area.


The plastic retainer has a barb on each side that will fit into a recessed portion of the rail channel. (Fig. 12) The barbs could create enough resistance to make it difficult to determine if the retainer is fully seated and that the barbs are snapped into the recessed portion of the rail channel.


Fig. 12


To ensure that the plastic retainer strip is fully seated into the rear rail:

1. Position the top in a mid-cycle position to relax the top fabric.

2. Prior to inserting the retainer into the rail channel, note the angle and orientation of the channel to make sure the retainer is inserted straight into the channel.

3. Position the side tension cable properly. There is a slit between the shorter, upper plastic retainer and the longer, lower retainer. The cable should pass through this slit in the plastic retainer. (Fig. 13)



Fig. 13


4. Insert the retainer into the rail, positioning the top of the retainer 15 mm from the top of the rail. There may be a silver

mark on the rail to indicate the starting point of the retainer. If the mark is not present, make a mark 15 mm below the

top of the rail. (Fig. 14)


Fig. 14


5. Using the seam to properly position the trim stick, place the trim stick on the top cloth next to the seam and directly

over the plastic retainer. (Fig. 15)



Fig. 15


6.  Starting at the top and working down, hammer the retainer into the channel. Use several strikes spaced evenly and

closely together while slowly moving down to ensure the entire length of the retainer is properly seated in the channel.


TIP: Do not hammer on the seam. This will damage the plastic retainer and/or the rail. Be sure to swing the hammer in the same angle and orientation as the rear side rail channel to ease installation and avoid damaging the plastic retainer. While some force is required, do not use excessive force when hammering.


– Thanks to Jeremy Richardson

Camaro Convertible Tonneau Installation

An optional one-piece, soft tonneau cover (Fig. 9) is available on the Camaro convertible that fits over the lowered folding top, providing a finished appearance. For the 2012 model year, the design of the tonneau cover has changed. It now includes two elastic cords to help secure the edges of the cover.


Fig. 9


Correct installation of the tonneau cover is critical to securing the cover. It’s important to explain the installation procedure to owners.


TIP: During PDI, be sure to remove the two Christmas tree fasteners on the trim panel behind the rear seatback and install the two posts included with the tonneau cover. The front of the cover attaches to the posts. In the near future, the posts will be installed at the factory during vehicle assembly.


Tonneau Cover Installation


1.  Unfold the cover and place it on the vehicle behind the rear seat.

2.  Fold over the sides of the cover.

3.  Attach the cord (Fig. 10, A) at the front edge of the cover to the post (Fig. 10, B) on the back seat rear panel on both sides.

The cover must be secured to each post. Previous models had two clips that attached to the posts.


 Fig. 10


4.  Insert the outer tab (Fig. 11, A) under the trim (Fig. 11, B) on both sides.


Fig. 11


5.  Push the outer rim and center edge of the cover under the vehicle trim.


– Thanks to Jack Pantaleo and Brad Thacher

Remote Keyless Entry Transmitter Inoperative

The Remote Keyless Entry (RKE) transmitter (key fob) (Fig. 8) on some 2012 Sonic models may not respond to any button presses, including the Lock, Unlock, Trunk Release, Panic Alarm, or Remote Start buttons. Once the mechanical key is used to unlock the driver’s door and the door is opened, the transmitter functionality returns.


Fig. 8


Do not replace or reprogram the RKE transmitter. Update the Body Control Module (BCM) software on the vehicle using the latest calibration. Be sure to check that the correct calibration is being used. Different files are available for North American vehicles and non-North American vehicles.


– Thanks to Bryan Brunner


1.8L 4-Cylinder Engine Timing

Some 2011-2012 Cruze and 2012 Sonic models equipped with the 1.8L 4-cylinder engine (RPO LUW) may have an illuminated Service Engine Soon light along with DTC P0016 (Crankshaft Position – Intake Camshaft Position Not Plausible) set. This condition may be seen most often on vehicles with low miles, generally below 300 miles (500 km).


If DTC P0016 is set and normal diagnosis does not lead to a cause, the condition may be the result of the engine being out of time.


Use the following procedure to check the engine timing.


1. Check for the camshaft position actuator to be unlocked by placing a wrench on the cam lug and for the cam to move freely from the actuator.


2. Check for proper timing of the cam actuator sprockets and the camshafts. (Fig. 4) The engine should be at cylinder 1 TDC.  (Fig. 5)


Fig. 4


Fig. 5


3. If the marks on the cam sprockets are aligned as outlined in the appropriate Service Information (Fig. 6), check to see if

the EN-6628-A camshaft locking tool fits into the slots in the backs of the cams. (Fig. 7) If the locking tool will not fit,

loosen the actuator sprockets and align the cams and sprockets. Torque the bolts.


Fig. 6


Fig. 7


TIP: The locking tool is not strong enough to hold while loosening or tightening the actuator bolts. Use a wrench on the cam hex lug. It may be necessary to grind the wrench due to the tight fit between the head and the cam lug.


It is critical to use the correct timing tools in order to properly time the engine.


– Thanks to Alan Salisbury


Updated Dealership Infrastructure Guidelines

The GM Dealership Infrastructure Guidelines have been updated recently with the latest network specifications.


The guidelines include a recommendation of one Techline PC for every two technicians and one MDI for every Techline PC.


For SPS purposes, a USB drive may be required when programming a radio/navigation system or Instrument Panel Cluster. The USB drive should be a 2.0 compliant flash drive with 512 MB of storage or greater.


GM continues to support:

• Intel Dual Core, Intel Core 2 duo/quad processors

• Intel i3/i5/i7

• Business grade hardware

• Windows 7 Professional 32 bit and 64 bit operating systems

• Vista Business 32 bit SP1.


GM does not support the following:

• AMD, Celeron or Pentium IV or lower processors

• Consumer grade hardware

• Windows XP or Windows XP Mode/Windows Virtual PC on Windows 7 Professional or other variations of operating systems

• Internet Explorer (IE) 9 browser

• 64 bit version of Java

• Custom built, non-branded or thin client PCs


If your system automatically updated to Internet Explorer 9 (IE), contact the Techline Customer Support Center for instructions to return to IE 8. IE 9 is not compatible with some features of Techline software. Compatibility will be addressed later in the year.


To view the guidelines, visit Click Techline IT Solutions > GM IT Standards, or click here. (In Canada, go to the Service Library under Tools, Processes and Equipment on GlobalConnect.) Any questions about the Dealership Infrastructure Guidelines can be directed to the TCSC at 1-800-828-6860 (English) or 1-800-503-3222 (French), or to GM DESolutions at 1-800-GM-TOOLS.


– Thanks to Lisa Scott

New Color Touch Screen Infotainment Systems

 Fig 1


A new family of color touch screen infotainment systems is being introduced — the Color Radio (RPO UFU) and Connected Color Radio (RPO UP9) — for 2012 and 2013 model year vehicles. The systems use a 7-inch or 8-inch touch screen and an icon-based interface.


The Color Radio offers entry/mid-level radio features. The uplevel Connected Color Radio (Fig. 2) is equipped with the MyLink (Chevrolet) or IntelliLink (Buick and GMC) system that has provisions for the owner to stream music and other programs via a smartphone and the Internet, and includes these features:

AM/FM/XM/CD/MP3 capability

• USB input

• AUX input

• iPod™/mass storage device support

• Bluetooth hands-free phone and Bluetooth audio streaming

• Voice Recognition control

• Full color touch screen

• Upgradeable software by USB


Fig 2


Each infotainment system can be controlled by using the faceplate knobs and buttons, the touch screen and voice recognition (activated through the audio steering wheel controls).


Advanced Connectivity 


The Connected Color Radio offers the following advanced connectivity features and benefits.


Bluetooth – Instead of just being able to wirelessly connect a cell phone to the vehicle to make phone calls, Bluetooth acts almost like a USB connection that is wireless. It enables access to features on a smartphone such as contact lists and music. It also allows data (music, voice, information) to stream over the wireless Bluetooth connection. The Bluetooth hardware, antenna and functionality are part of the radio.


Bluetooth Streaming Audio – Bluetooth Streaming Audio allows pairing a smartphone, feature phone or device that supports streaming audio and then playing music wirelessly through the Bluetooth connection.


TIP: After pairing a Bluetooth-enabled device, the Bluetooth audio screen button may be available even if the device does not support it. In this case, the button will not do anything.


Enhanced Voice Recognition – Short commands can be given through the hands-free Push to Talk button and the radio system will respond.


Smartphone App Integration – Initially, this feature will function only with iPhone, Android, or Blackberry smartphones. It uses the phone’s data connection to access Internet radio apps Pandora® and Stitcher™.


The Pandora app streams music and the Stitcher app streams news and other programs. These apps reside on the radio and are accessed from the touch screen or from the voice recognition system. They get the data they need through the Bluetooth or USB (for iPhone) connection accessing the phone’s data connection.


TIP: Customers should be advised that when connected, they are using their smartphone’s data plan.


Gracenote – Gracenote technology embedded into the CCR radio helps manage and navigate the USB device music collection. When a USB device is connected to the radio, Gracenote identifies the music collection and delivers the correct album, artist name, genres, and cover art on the screen. Gracenote will try to fill in any missing information. Gracenote database updates will be available online through,, and


TIP: Gracenote indexes music information only when the mobile device is connected through the USB port.


USB Connectivity – An iPod™, an MP3 Player, or a USB flash drive can be plugged into the USB port. The USB icon displays when a USB device is connected.


Customer Upgradeability


In addition to the standard software update via TIS2Web, the new Connected Color Radio is upgradeable by the owner using the USB connection. Downloads are web-based using a USB flash drive, and allow existing features to be updated and new features to be added.


TIP: Be sure the customer understands that after an update, Bluetooth devices will need to be paired again and USB devices may need to be re-indexed.


Customers can perform some updates themselves; others may require a trip to the dealership. Customers will be informed when they can or cannot perform updates themselves.


Complete instructions for the USB software upgrade process can be located on the GM vehicle’s brand website. The updates will be available after logging into the customer’s GM account online.


The updates must be saved to a USB drive, which is taken to the vehicle and plugged into the USB port. The engine must be running until the update is completed.


1. Start the engine.

2. Insert the USB drive into the USB port.

3. Press CONFIG.

4. Touch Radio Settings.

5. Touch Software Versions Menu.

6. Touch Update Radio Software.

7. Follow the on-screen prompts.

8. Remove the USB drive when the update is complete.


Voice Recognition


Voice recognition can be set up to respond to English, Spanish, French and German.


Users can control their favorite music source and make phone calls hands-free. To use the enhanced voice recognition, simply press the Push to Talk button on the steering wheel. The radio will say “Please say a command” followed by a beep. After the beep, the user tells the radio what to do.


See the MyLink/IntelliLink Features and Functions Guide for a complete list of voice commands.


• Example calling commands: “Call Amanda” or “Dial 555-1212”

• Example music device commands: “Play artist Van Halen” or “Play song ‘Dance the Night Away'”

• Example radio commands: “Tune FM 104.3” or “Tune XM Classic Vinyl”


Internet Radio Services


Currently, two embedded applications reside in the radio — Pandora Internet Radio and Stitcher SmartRadio. The Pandora and Stitcher applications on the radio are used to remotely control each application on the smartphone.


Pandora Internet Radio is a free personalized Internet radio service that streams radio stations based on favorite artists or genres (a slight delay may occur when loading a song or changing a station). (Fig. 3) Pandora is not available in Canada.


Fig 3


To use Pandora, customers must download the latest Pandora app to the appropriate smartphone and then restart it. Pressing the Pandora screen button on the touch screen launches the Pandora app on the smartphone.


Any stations created on the paired phone can be listened to in the vehicle. Favorite songs can be identified by saying “Thumbs up” using voice recognition or pressing “Thumbs up” on the touch screen.


Stitcher SmartRadio streams favorite news, sports and entertainments shows.


To use Stitcher, customers must download the Stitcher SmartRadio app to the smartphone and then restart it. Various radio program categories can be selected. Desired stations can be added to the favorites list by pressing the Star button.


TIP: BlackBerry phones do not support this application.


Remind customers that the smartphone uses its data connection to stream the music and news (similar to just launching the Pandora or Stitcher app on the smartphone without using the vehicle’s radio).


TIP: The ability to stream Pandora or Stitcher via the radio is directly dependent on the smartphone data connection to the cellular tower/Wi-Fi hotspot. If the data connection is poor or intermittent, music streaming will be adversely affected.


If a “Please See Device” radio error message is displayed, common causes are:

• Lost cellular data connection/Wi-Fi hotspot

• Bluetooth connection between the phone and the radio

• Lost USB connection between the phone and the radio

• Low battery on the phone/device

• Application on the phone terminated unexpectedly


– Thanks to Anthony Kraatz and Katul Patel



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