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2003 Chevrolet Silverado brakes NHTSA complaints: Service Brakes

NHTSA — Service Brakes Problems

2003 Chevrolet Silverado (Page 1 of 6)

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,122 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.

2003 Chevrolet Silverado brakes problems

brakes problem

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2003 Chevrolet Silverado Owner Comments (Page 1 of 6)

problem #103

Oct 022013


  • 96,000 miles


I was approaching a traffic light in town and when the brakes were applied the brake line broke and there were no brakes. I swerved to miss the car infront of me but hit her passenger side rear. She in turn hit the car in front of her.

- Lebanon, OH, USA

problem #102

Oct 292014


  • 84,900 miles
I depressed brake pedal to shift the truck from park, and the brake pedal went to the floor! pumping the brakes did no good. I looked underneath, and brake fluid was running down from under the driver's seat area. Upon closer inspection, one of the brake lines coming out of the ABS modules had sprung a leak at the point where it bends over the top of the frame rail. If this had occurred while driving, an accident is likely, as there was no brake, despite the dual master cylinder! all of the brake lines are severely corroded, especially where the oem factory formed bends are. The brake lines are actually at the point of crumbling in places. To counter any claims about severe corrosion environment causing the problem, contrast the brake lines to the fuel lines on this vehicle which have no to very minimal corrosion. I also own another 2003 GM vehicle with far more miles, and it also has very little brake line corrosion. I have owned both these vehicles from new, and the Silverado has less miles, and less winter salt exposure than the other vehicle. I have also owned other vehicles for many more years and miles than this Silverado, and have never experienced anything like the horrible crumbling of this obviously defective brake line material used on the Silverado. Please NHTSA, take some action on this obviously serious safety situation caused by defective manufacturer materials!

- Frankenmuth, MI, USA

problem #101

Oct 152014


  • 71,000 miles
Brake line failed due to corrosion causing brakes to fail.

- Jackson, MI, USA

problem #100

Oct 142014


  • 62,300 miles


I was coming to a stop to turn right and brake pedal went to the floor. I had very little brakes only if I went completely to the floor. I had to swerve to miss the car in front of me. I brought truck to brake shop and the driver side rear steel brake line was spraying brake fluid all over my tire.

- Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #99

Sep 232014


  • 77,051 miles
After having my truck serviced at the dealership, the service tech tested my brakes & the brake lines burst. After inspection, rusted brake lines, under drivers seat, all burst. Causing an expensive cost to replace all brake lines.

- Washington, IL, USA

problem #98

Oct 012014


  • 265,890 miles
Driving my 2003 Chevy Silverado in the left lane of the city freeway approximately 50 mph in heavy traffic. Pushed brake to stop for vehicles changing lanes ahead. Brake pedal initially had pressure but after about 2 seconds went to the floor with nearly no pressure and no braking effect at all. There was no prior indication of a problem and no warning light signaling an issue. Swerved into the left berm to avoid hitting cars ahead. Traveled 20 plus car lengths while dropping automatic transmission into lowest gear and pumping brake pedal to no affect. Forced truck against barrier wall to avoid hitting other vehicles. Brake warning light came on as truck stopped. A large puddle of brake fluid was dumped below rt rear wheel and leaked when the brake pedal was pressed. There had been no previous issues with the brakes and brake pads were replaced 20,000 miles ago. The dual circuit system provided no partial braking effect at all. I had the vehicle towed home and discovered a steel brake line burst from corrosion and all brake lines significantly degraded. This truck has been meticulously maintained, is driven everyday and has been garage kept since it was purchased new in Dec 2002.

- Westerville, OH, USA

problem #97

Sep 202014


  • 67,567 miles


I have a 2003 chevolet silverador the brake lines rusted and when I apply my brake they went to the floor scearing me have to death.thank god ihad just started up a hill and was able to get it stop by using the emergancy brake.

- Greencastle, PA, USA

problem #96

Aug 272014


  • 110,000 miles
While driving and approaching a read light, I depressed my brakes and the pedal went to the floor causing me not to stop and running a read light. I was fortunate not to have hit or be hit by another car. I managed to pull to the side and later when the truck was in the shop I came to find out that my break lines rusted through nearly causing a serious accident. This kind of defect is completely unacceptable. I was fortunate not to have been killed. What more can I say?

- New Boston, MI, USA

problem #95

Sep 092014


  • 79,713 miles
Lost brake fluid, brake line under drivers side blew out lost all brakes. Was able to stop using emergency brake or it would have been a crash into my garage! brake lines are all rusted very badly. This is a spare vehicle and is usually only used in the summer or for quick trips to town. All brake lines are suspect in many places.

- Agency, IA, USA

problem #94

Sep 022014


  • 139,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Chevrolet Silverado. While driving approximately 30 mph, the brakes failed and the brake pedal traveled to the floorboard. The contact observed brake fluid leaking onto the ground. The contact replaced the rear brake line and noticed that the front brake line also failed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 139,000.

- Middleburg, FL, USA

problem #93

Sep 092014


  • 151,000 miles


Brake lines are rusted out. I was driving down the highway, coming to a stop light and the line let go as I applied the brakes.

- Valparaiso, IN, USA

problem #92

Aug 092014


  • 92,000 miles
I was backing my boat down the boat ramp when the brakes went to the floor. Parked the truck and seen a puddle under driver side rear tire area. Drove home slowly on back roads and pulled it into my garage to see where the leak was comng from. Found the brake line rusted above the frame just before it turns to come down to the block that connects to the rubber line. I spliced in a new section of brake line, bled the brakes and ok again. Welcome to

- Menomonie, WI, USA

problem #91

Apr 292014


  • 95,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Chevrolet Silverado. The contact stated that while attempting to stop at a stop sign, excessive force was applied to the brake pedal in order to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the brake line was fractured. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 95,000.

- Kennesaw, GA, USA

problem #90

Jul 292014


  • 140,000 miles
Brakes gave out, could not hardly stop the vehicle, come to fine out after doing a google search the years between 1999 and 2003 the ( NHTSA ) is investigating and had other complaints about theses problems. I called to see if GM had a recall on the the vehicle and I was told they had not. The GM customer assist department gave a case number. Reason corrosion on some of the brake lines.

- Felton, DE, USA

problem #89

Jul 232014


  • 111,000 miles
I was driving home in my 2003 Silverado from work and had to apply brakes for a car that had came to a sudden halt. When I applied the brakes, briefly they caught as normal, but then suddenly the brake pedal went to the floor. Was too late for any warning as it happened with a car in front of me. Thankfully I was able to avoid a crash although narrowly. There had been no signs of brake fluid leakage or anything else before the incident. Took to a mechanic who informed me the brake lines had given way. This type of incident should never occur. Brake lines shouldn't simply rust and give way. The lines should be inspected by GM and an immediate recall made. My case is not the only case that has happened as there have been several news reports and message boards filled with similar experiences. I am a very loyal GM customer, but GM owes it to their customers to ensure their safety. This is extremely dangerous and very well could lead to death and/or serious injury if happening at the wrong time and place.

- La Follette, TN, USA

problem #88

Jul 182014


  • 95,000 miles
On July 18, 2014 while driving at approximately 45 mph I went to press the brakes and the peddle went to the floor. I pulled over and looked under my truck. I notice that the four brake line under the drivers door were all rusted and one broke. I searched the internet and see that this is a common problem with this truck. This is a safety concern and could get someone hurt or killed.

- Nanuet, NY, USA

problem #87

Jun 262014


  • 84,997 miles
While vehicle was pulling a trailer loaded with a race car, the truck started grinding down with a knocking noise..unattached trailer from truck and brought home...rear-end cover had rusted and leaked out all the fluid...while changing that noticed that the break line underneath the plastic cover under passenger side door had rusted in two( the brake line on each side of this cover looked good it was only underneath the cover) but upon further examination all brake lines are starting to corrode... there are 3 Silverado in my family two 2003 and a 2002. In 2 different states( one of them travels through the highest mountain in Kentucky (black mountain). When told the other owners of this problem they inspected there vehicles and sure enough all of them have corroded and breaking brake lines...had it not been for god warning us with the grinding noises...what would have happened to not only all my family members driving but whomever was riding with them!!!!!!!!

- Martinsville, IN, USA

problem #86

Jul 122014


  • 109,500 miles
The vehicle was stopped, the brake was applied to put the truck in reverse and the brake pedal went to the floor. The passenger side front brake line ruptured due to rust. All the brake lines were rusty and need to be replaced. I am very lucky that the vehicle was not on the highway when this happened. I pointed this problem out to the Chevy dealer when the vehicle was relatively new and still under warranty (2 or 3 years old) and was told this is normal and should not be a concern. The brake lines were showing rust after a year or so.

- Cranford, NJ, USA

problem #85

Oct 142009


  • 76,777 miles
While backing out of drive I lost braking action. The line servicing the rear brakes rusted/corroded allowing the brake fluid to escape and resulted in no brakes.

- Denver, NC, USA

problem #84

Jul 032014


  • 63,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Chevrolet Silverado. The contact stated that while driving approximately 35 mph, the brakes failed without warning. The contact mentioned that when the brake pedal was depressed it sank into the floorboard. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for a diagnostic testing. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 63,000.

- Hurricane, WV, USA

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