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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
114,310 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Chevrolet Avalanche electrical problems

electrical problem

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2002 Chevrolet Avalanche Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #22

Sep 012015


  • 120,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche 1500. While attempting to start the vehicle, it failed to start. The contact stated that the vehicle eventually started up after waiting for a while. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic where the fuel pump, battery, and starter were changed; however, the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer where the starter was replaced again; however, the failure persisted. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 120,000.

- Arcadia, IN, USA

problem #21

Aug 052006

Avalanche 8-cyl

  • miles
GM had repaired the rust brake defects on my type of vehicle in many salt states that endure cold weather. But because there was not enough outrage they did not repair this same defect in my state. There is a problem with the wheel bearings where rust causes the anti lock braking system to needless engage when it should not during slow speeds sometimes making braking dangerous in slow turning and parking situations. I have already spent thousands of dollars fixing these defects on my own but because of a faulty design in the system this problem has a tendency to re occur.

- Washington, MI, USA

problem #20

Jun 202014

Avalanche 8-cyl

  • 160,000 miles
I was driving at night and the low beam lights stopped working. I change the fuses, low beam lights, daytime running light relay, and headlight relay and the low beam light still doesn't work.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #19

Apr 152013

Avalanche 8-cyl

  • 1,000,000 miles


I'm have been experiencing several technical issues with my 2002 Avalanche through years. I can removed my key when my ignition turned on to drive. My truck also reduces engine speed when driving at 45 mpg. It result for me to pull over on the interstate to reset the PCM to drive. Then my check engine light will appear on also. Then it will clear itself sometimes. Sandy sanson a GM dealership in pensacola fl where I bought the car in 2006 has charge me unnecessary for parts and labor to fix these issues. When bringing the problem to the attention of auto repair. A sale rep said my keychain can where my ignition out. He also stated that my car needed other component parts in order to fix the problem. Which never solve the main issue that I requested to be fix. I also talk to the head supervisor and got poor customer service. Furthermore, it has not been resolve at this moment. I continue to drive because my truck is the only transportation I have at the moment. I'm going to speak to the dealership again about this issues, but please assist me because I been having the same problems. That are in the headline at this moment. I written about my reduce engine speed in the past.

- Pensacola , FL, USA

problem #18

Feb 042004


  • 2,000 miles
Fuel pump failed 3 times already. All door electrical solenoids/cable system failed-possible poor ventilation causing excessive condensation resulting in rusting of cables. Note: A friend with the same year model has exact problems and more. All costly and non-warranty items! could have been cause of accidents when fuel pumps failed but for the grace of god.

- Saint Paul Island, AK, USA

problem #17

Sep 112006


  • 35,000 miles
The four wheel drive service lamp frequently illuminates at different speeds and stays on until the truck is restarted, then the lamp will stay off for days, then come back on for no reason, when the truck is scanned no codes are returned, the truck seems to drive fine, but the problem is very annoying.

- Clinton Twp., MI, USA

problem #16

Aug 032011

Avalanche 8-cyl

  • 141,574 miles


Recently my 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche has begun to shut off while driving which causes the vehicle to lose power. Another important safety issue, the brakes began to press all the way to the floor while braking. On August 3, 2011 while my son was driving the vehicle approaching a stop light, he pressed the brakes which went to the floor and rear ended vehicle in front that was making a turn. The front bumper is now damaged ( T-boned) and the air bags did not deploy. I'm not very pleased that I never received any notices about the braking system. I can't afford to make monthly payments and still have to pay costly maintenance fees. I can not afford to jeopardize my life and my family, especially my granddaughter. Something has to be done about these safety issues: Braking, cutting off while driving and no deployed air bags.

- Capitol Hts, MD, USA

problem #15

Aug 212011


  • 137,000 miles
Vehicle stalls at high rate of speed, highway driving, truck hesitates and jerks, and comes to the near point of stalling, and low speeds, vehicle does the same, hesitates, and jerks, stalls, all systems fail. Starts back up upon shifting to neutral. Mechanic says it is the crankshaft position sensor on the 8.1 L 8100 series motor, the same motor that is in the 2001 model Silverado, Sierra, and Suburban that is the subject of a recall. Location is in the back of the motor making it near impossible to change out without major engine repair work, removing intake manifold and other complex things, to repair an apparent $60 part. Dangerous due to the fact that there is absolutely no indication that this is happening and happened on a vehicle that has been cared for completely. Also, dangerous due to the size of the vehicle and the near impossible task of steering it to a safe place with no power brakes or steering, especially at highway speeds. Mechanic says part it almost 100% plastic and can succumb to high and low variations in temperature and break down in composition. Which, it has done in this truck, again without no warning, and no apparent cost effective repair. It would appear that the recall should be extended to the 2002 model year as well as the same 8.1 L motor was installed in the Chevrolet Avalanche 2500 truck (by the way, the vehicle was built in 2001), which, other that the different body style has the same chassis and motor as the Suburban. Very dangerous for a woman, who cannot or does not have the strength to steer a 7,000 pound truck that completely stalled at a high rate of speed.

- Grosse Pointe Farms, MI, USA

problem #14

Apr 012011

Avalanche 4WD 8-cyl

  • 100,395 miles
2002 Chevy Avalanche 2500 with 8.1 engine dies without warning at driving speed. The battery light comes on, after the vehicle shuts down, but no check engine light, no problems with alternator or battery charge. No sputtering or sluggishness, no warning whatsoever. The vehicle just shuts down. When this happens there is no power steering and no brakes for this 7K pound vehicle! sometimes, once pulled over and shutting everything off and trying to restart it will restart immediately, sometimes it takes up to 10 minutes of trying to crank it intermittently before it will restart. It has done this twice in the last three days and a dozen times at random intervals over the last several months I have read on the internet others from who have the same problem and most likely solution seems to be the crankshaft position sensor which some say has been recalled on the 2001 model engine for the Silverado, but cannot find anything for the same 2002 engine. This is dangerous and frightening enough at "neighborhood" speeds, but considerably more so at interstate speeds as the vehicle loses all power when the engine shuts down, leaving the driver unable to steer, brake or immediately restart the vehicle leaving it stalled in the middle of the interstate!

- Knoxville, TN, USA

problem #13

Apr 152010


  • miles
The dash light stays on constantly showing the security light, gas light and battery light flashing. When you shut the truck off it still shows the yellow security light and it never goes off and if you leave it sitting for 1 or 2 days without driving it makes the battery go dead.

- Monticello, KY, USA

problem #12

Jan 182005


  • 82,000 miles


Dash light don't work. Dimmer switch very hot to the touch.

- Clearwater, FL, USA

problem #11

Apr 132010


  • 105,000 miles
My 2002 Chevy Avalanche 1500,2wd had the same problem. The truck stalled and then shut off while I was driving on the freeway. I replaced the crank positioning sensor and it works well now...but it was very dangerous when it shut off, I almost caused a huge accident.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #10

Jan 232009


  • 111,000 miles
2002 Chevrolet Avalanche 1500. Ignition switch is shorting out, have to jiggle key to start. When driving tuck looses power and shuts off loosing all power steering and all power brakes. Had to muscle truck to shoulder of roadway and restart. Does this intermittently without warning. This is very dangerous situation.

- Missoula, MT, USA

problem #9

Jan 302008

Avalanche 8-cyl

  • 89,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche 2500. While driving 60 mph, the vehicle would intermittently fail without warning. After waiting for a short period of time, the vehicle would eventually restart. When the failure occurs, the battery drains shortly afterwards. He took the vehicle to the dealer on numerous occasions, but they could not find any error codes or duplicate the failure. The vehicle has not been repaired. The failure mileage was 89,000 and current mileage was 93,000. Updated 02/10/09. Updated 02/11/09.

- Canton, OH, USA

problem #8

Jan 292007

Avalanche 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles
Engine died while driving 60 mph on the interstate in snowy conditions on 2 lane portion in heavy traffic. By the time I coasted to a stop with no power steering or power brakes I was on an overpass with nowhere to pull out of traffic, so ended up blocking one lane of traffic for about 2 minutes. Obd II code reader showed no code errors. Replaced fuel filter. Did not fix problem. After checking NHTSA site as well as others on the internet found it might be the ckp (crankshaft position sensor). Took it to dealership where their diagnostic tool verified it was the ckp. Quoted part and labor to be $300 - $500. Saving up money for repair.

- Dearborn, MI, USA

problem #7

Nov 012006


  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,130 miles
I have a Chevrolet Avalanche year 2002 keeps shutting down. I ran on highway 55 miles, then my car shut down....many cars behind almost hit. Very scary. I almost died! this problem shut down everyday after 10 minutes run. But not only my. Most the car same year, same model got the same problem too. This is very dangerous and don't know why GM didn't recall this. Please see all the post about this here:,4815.0.html,47937.40.html.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #6

Jun 252006

Avalanche 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,926 miles
The "cargo lamp on" indicator in the message area of the driver instrument panel is displayed when any of the following are activated; both overhead lights in the front overhead console, the three garage door/gate buttons(home link), both visor mirror lights, and both front door courtesy lights(the ones that come on when the door is opened). All of these also no longer turn on the appropriate lights when they are triggered. In addition, the sun roof/moon roof open/close button no longer works either, on the 06/25/06 it triggered the "cargo light on" display but as of the 06/27/06 it does nothing. My concerns are that the computer may be corrupt or malfunctioning, which could lead to failures, activations, or disabling of systems such as fuel injection, brake control, steering, traction control, acceleration, fuel ratios, timing, 4 wheel/2 wheel drive conversion, brake lights, turning lights, headlights, or electrical fire, or wiring that could cause electrical fire also.

- Lubbock, TX, USA

problem #5

Dec 292005

Avalanche 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
On several occasions, the 8.1L engine died at both low and high speeds (65 mph) resulting in lost of power brakes and steering. Could not shift transmission into neutral. Diagnosed by dealership shop found that the crank position sensor was failing. Multiple electrical diagnoses over course of failures did not show the sensor to be failing. Oem replacement of senor involved complete removal and dismantling of engine.

- Sewickley, PA, USA

problem #4

Mar 282005

Avalanche 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles
Caller hit a speed bump or a spot on the road that raised the speed. Up 60 or 70 mph and vehicle went completely dead. Pulled over on the highway and turned it off. Then, it started again. He\\caller stated it did not happen in the city, only on the highway. He took vehicle to two different dealers. One dealer said they could not duplicate the problem. Another dealer said the problem was a negative cable. Manufacturer has not been contacted yet. Caller said that the problem started after he had the intake valve cover replaced. Caller stated this happened 7 times. Caller believed the problem was in the electrical system.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #3

Jan 052005

Avalanche 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
Lights go out while drving.

- Duncan, SC, USA

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