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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
119,315 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.

2001 Chevrolet Suburban brakes problems

brakes problem

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2001 Chevrolet Suburban Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #25

Feb 272014

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 136,000 miles


This is the second time I had to make an emergency stop because of a rusted-thru brake line. This time, I was entering a high-speed merge from one four lane highway to another and traffic was backing up. I had to apply the brakes slightly hard to slow down in time. Pedal went completely to the floor with about 20% of the normal braking power available. Was not going to stop in time and was forced to drive off the road to avoid rear-ending another car and onto the road shoulder at speed. Barely had enough room between a major highway sign which was next to the shoulder and the cars in my lane. After repeatedly pumping the brakes (which you are taught not to do with antilock brakes), the SUV finally came to a stop. Without the shoulder, I would've caused a multi-car accident with injuries. I drove the car at slow speed directly to my shop who recommended replacing every brake line (every brake line was horribly rusted and brittle). Custom brake lines for this repair cost $1800!! I had spent $400 on the first repair. Trust me, every GM SUV from these years has this problem and are going to cause accidents and people will be killed!!! this vehicle weighs 5500 pounds.

- Saint James, NY, USA

problem #24

Jul 222013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
Coming to a stop light the brake pedal went to the floor. Only way I could stop was by using the electric brakes on my trailer to stop the combined vehicle. Examination revealed a rusted brake line coming from the brake master cylinder to the ABS module at the ABS module under the vehicle. Further examination revealed that the 4 brake lines from the ABS module to the wheels were all rusted/pitted and about ready to rust through.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #23

Apr 032014


  • 140,000 miles
The contact owns 2001 Chevrolet Suburban. The contact stated that while parking in a residential driveway, the brakes failed to respond. The contact stated that the ABS and the brake warning lights were illuminated. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer for diagnostic testing. The manufacturer was notified of the failure and stated that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 05V379000 (service brakes, hydraulic). The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure and current mileage was 140,000.

- Arlington , TX, USA

problem #22

Apr 032014


  • 148,000 miles


Tight turn in driveway ABS brakes locked up and there were no brakes, vehicle kept rolling almost running into garage door. If had been at intersection I would have hit car on front of me! car towed to Chevrolet dealership in arlington

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #21

Feb 202014

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 93,200 miles
2001 Suburban - when I applied my brakes coming to a stop sign the brake pedal went almost to the floor leaving me barely any braking power, but fortunately since I was driving at a slow speed (25 mph) I was able to stop in time. I then drove to a garage which was very close to where I was and had them put it up on the rack to look at it. They informed me that all of my brakes lines were very rusty and the one rear line had broken, I left it there and had that line replaced but after replacing that line another 2 lines broke during their testing after the first repairs. I ended up having 3 rear lines and the 2 lines to and from the master cylinder replaced (3 that broke and 2 other ones that looked really bad) at a cost of about $800, I am now going to get the remaining 2 front brake lines replaced "before" they brake on me also. These 2 lines are the hardest to replace and I was given an estimate of about $700-$800 to replace them. The one mechanic told me that a couple of years earlier his brake lines also broke on his Suburban coming up to a red light and he had to drive on the birm to avoid rear ending the car in front of him. He had to replace all of his Suburban brake lines.I live in western pa and have been driving here for almost 40 years with many different vehicles during that time but I have never had brake lines rust and break like this. From what I have been reading, this must be from faulty brake line material, none of my many other vehicles have ever had this happen so Chevy cannot just blame it on living in a snow/road salt area. *** I plan on going with a different manufacturer when I get my next SUV.

- Bridgeville, PA, USA

problem #20

Dec 082013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 87,000 miles
While driving brake line ruptured due to excessive rust, vehicle towed all brake line rusted and replaced especially at secure points.

- Lombard, IL, USA

problem #19

Nov 282013


  • 165,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Chevrolet Suburban. The contact stated that the rear brake failed to engage while driving 40 mph. The contact was able to stop the vehicle by using the front brake. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection where the contact was advised that the rear brake lines were corroded and leaking brake fluid. The rear brake lines were replaced. The VIN was not available. The failure and current mileage was 165,000.

- Eaton Town , NJ, USA

problem #18

Sep 072013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
The brakes failed and the pedal last all pressure and went to the floor. Was successful in stopping the vehicle from 35 mph without incident. Upon inspection, the rear driver's side brake line was severely corroded and failed. Further inspection showed that other brake line are in the similar condition.

- Severna Park, MD, USA

problem #17

Aug 132013


  • 67,125 miles
I had just accelerated from a traffic light and two cars pulled out in front of me. They were forced to stop immediately due to a vehicle in front of them making a left turn. This forced me to make an emergency stop. I jammed on the brakes, the antilock system activated, the tires started to squeal and the brake pedal went to the floorboard. Fortunately, the turning car was able to make his turn and the two cars that pull out in front of me were able to get moving and out of the way as I slowly came to a stop. I took the vehicle to the dealer and they checked the brakes out. The brake line ruptured due to rust. They had to replace all the brake line due to extreme rust. They were rustier than rusty, they were trash. Upon inspection of the brake lines I noticed that only the brakes lines were extremely rusty. Rest of underside was not to rusty at all. As a retired quality supervisor with over 30 years experience in the metal stamping industry I am fully convinced that something is definitly not right here. The brake system is a safety related item the lines should not rust out as these lines did. I believe the wrong material was used for these lines or a step in the rust prevention process was not performed that led to this premature rusting. Brake lines should not rust out like these lines did.

- Cortland, OH, USA

problem #16

Jul 262013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 134,000 miles
Brake pedal went to the floor when applied in a parking lot. Parked vehicle. Upon return large puddle of brake fluid under drivers side front and brake line had failed. All brake lines are very corroded on this 12 year old vehicle. In addition, fuel lines are also very corroded but have not yet failed.

- Columbia, MD, USA

problem #15

Jun 242013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 145,182 miles


Brake pedal went almost to floor when approaching a stop sign. Stopping ability was very poor. We were close to home, so we returned home. Upon inspection brake fluid was dripping down frame rail under drivers seat, where about five brake lines enter the ABS valve unit. The brake lines were all severely rusted to the point one failed. Very bad location for the ABS valve, as the brake lines follow the frame rail from the front left wheel to the ABS unit and are prone to collecting road salt spray. Service access is limited and awkward. This same failure occurred on my 2001 Silverado pickup in August 2010.

- New Tripoli, PA, USA

problem #14

Jun 232013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 125,756 miles
I was driving along and without warning when I went to apply my brakes the pedal went to the floor. Luckily I was just going to slow down for an exit and nobody was directly in-front of me. This could have been a more serious incident under other circumstances I got the vehicle home I investigated and found the brake lines were all rusted and one of them had burst a hole. This has the potential to be a very serious problem for someone that might be in a different driving scenario than I was.please look heavily into this problem. Thank you

- Blaine, MN, USA

problem #13

May 012013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
Moving my boat in the driveway and when I went to stop my brake line from the master cylinder to the ABS controller failed causing no braking!!! pumped them like crazy and it just pissed out all of the fluid. I had my children playing in the area and I was fortunate that they were not killed! upon inspection the brake line rotted at the points where they are held onto the frame by the hangers! this is incredibly dangerous and I believe that GM should have some liability in this matter. The vehicle is barely just over 10 years old and this is a major flaw in design. The scary part is the lines look great overall but where they are placed in all of the hangers they had rot spots in them that was only apparent after dis-assembly. A normal safety inspection would not pick up on the corrosion hidden within the hangers.

- Bow, NH, USA

problem #12

Jun 102013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 124,600 miles
Rear brake lines rusted and broke.

- Yonkers, NY, USA

problem #11

Oct 192012

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 182,000 miles
While braking at a stop light the ABS started making a buzzing sound; it failed. The anti-lock braking system no longer be used safely.

- Smithville, TX, USA

problem #10

May 102013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 75,995 miles
Brake failure. Metal brake line between master cylinder and caliper developed a leak due to corrosion of the metal brake line. Mechanic said all metal brake lines were rusted and corroded and needed to be replaced. I understand there is an investigation underway on these faulty lines. The replacement of these lines was very expensive and was definitely a premature failure in my opinion. Luckily my 20 year old son noticed the brake pedal was going to the floor while on the interstate and was able to safely exit the highway. If the line would have failed a few minutes earlier, he would have been in a crash.

- Villa Hills, KY, USA

problem #9

Apr 152013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 109,636 miles
While making a sudden stop, a hydraulic line serving the front brakes ruptured causing complete loss of front brakes. This is the third hydraulic brake line failure on this vehicle. The first two lines to fail were on the rear axle. All of the remaining hydraulic brake lines are heavily rusted and pitted, they all are at risk of failure at any time. This problem is widespread on this year and model vehicle. It poses a serious risk to the drivers and to the persons and property of others. Every one of the owners should be notified that their vehicle may require replacement brake lines. Whose responsibility it shall be is up to NHTSA, but the need for information is great. This is a heavy weight vehicle for ordinary consumer use. Most such users are unprepared for a brake failure of this kind. Interestingly, GM does not offer replacement parts. Precision formed lines are available on the aftermarket. The local Chevy dealer uses non-corroding copper-nickel replacement line, and fabricates the lines locally. The same brake line metallurgy was used in high end european cars (Volvo and Porsche) beginning in the 1980S.

- Wellesley, MA, USA

problem #8

Mar 222013

Suburban 8-cyl

  • 132,000 miles
While driving on the highway at 55mph I was near my exit and activated the brakes and the pedal went to the floor. I was fortunate to have the room to change lanes and pass my exit and downshifted to slow and eventually stop. I had tried to apply the parking brake and the cable snapped on the spot. After getting the car to a mechanic I was told that every brake line was corroded and most were failing. The mechanic also said it isn't recommended to replace just the leaking lines because once the pressure is restored, the remaining lines would then likely fail. The vehicle is currently in the shop and I am waiting for what I am sure will be a sizable repair bill.

- Secane, PA, USA

problem #7

Feb 082012


  • 122,000 miles
Started to leave driveway and experienced a complete brake loss.

- Elbert, CO, USA

problem #6

Jan 082013


  • 120,000 miles
Brake pedal went to floor. Was able to stop with emerg brake. Dealer says all brake lines are rusted out and must be replaced $2000.

- Columbus, OH, USA

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