really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,508 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 GMC Sierra 1500 brakes problems

brakes problem

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2002 GMC Sierra 1500 Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #36

Oct 262014

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 113,569 miles


Brake line failure.. this incident happened today, 10/26/2014

- Conway, SC, USA

problem #35

Oct 122014

Sierra 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 149,266 miles
Traveling North on route 28 near chantilly, Virginia, a line of cars in front of me came to an abrupt halt. I pressed my brake peddle hard and within three seconds the brake peddle was at the floor. I quickly maneuvered my truck to the right and was able utilize the emergency brake to slow the truck to a stop. Incredibly, my son and I were not injured, we did not hit the line if vehicles in front of us, and were all spared a potentially deadly outcome. After coming to a stop, my son and I inspected our truck and brake fluid was leaking from the left supply line to the rear break. The line had burst due to hard braking and corrosion of the fuel line. We were saved for some reason, however, if this had been on a weekday during commuting hours, the outcome would have been entirely different. The NHTSA should continue to hold GM accountable for this poor engineering (fuel lines) and eventual catastrophic situation that will, or probably already has, happened.

- Manassas, VA, USA

problem #34

Sep 202014

Sierra 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 87,510 miles
My 16 year old daughter was driving the truck at the time of the failure. She has her temporary license and was driving for the third time. After driving in town and on some rural roads, she started getting too close to other cars at stop lights and stop signs. I began telling her to stop sooner, she said she was trying. It only got worse so we went home. She almost ran into our house as tried to stop in the driveway. Because she is a new driver, she did not realize the brakes were going out. After we got out of the truck I noticed a puddle of fluid forming under the driver side. I determined that it was brake fluid. I raised the hood and had her press on the brake pedal. Brake fluid started spraying out of a brake line near the frame. The brake lines from the master cylinder to the ABS module are very rusty along with every other brake line. This truck may be 12 years old and have 87,000 miles but I have always taken very good care of it and it still looks new inside and out. I do not believe a major safety component like the brakes should be failing at this time. Other critical components have warning systems to alert you to possible failures but when there is no way to tell if something critical will fail I believe those parts should be made to last. If the life expectancy of a part is limited, the manufacturer should recommend service at a reasonable interval. My daughter is now scared to death to drive any of our cars because she feels it could happen again. I am just glad I wasn't pulling my 20 foot boat and had to make a panic stop at highway speeds when the line failed. Someone could have got injured or killed I am currently getting quotes to have it repaired. So far I have received prices ranging from $600-1500. I feel GM should cover most to all of these expenses because they used sub-par parts to build a critical component of the brake system.

- Centerville , OH, USA

problem #33

Aug 052014

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 136,115 miles


While driving in town, I depressed the brake pedal to slow for a stop sign traveling under 25 mph. The pedal pressure felt firm/normal for a brief second and then went nearly to the floor and I was barely able to stop. The brake light on the dash did not illuminate until approximately the 10th time I tried to stop. If there had been someone in front of me or I was traveling in a higher speed zone, I most certainly would not have stopped in time. The diagnosis is the rear brake line rusted through. I've been told by several mechanics that all the brake lines will have to be replaced as they are all so rusted no one line can be replaced without damaging the rest of the lines because of their close proximity to each other. I can't find anyone that will take on the job.

- Jefferson, WI, USA

problem #32

Jun 122014

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
2002 GMC Sierra 1500-brakes went out suddenly as I was turning into a busy intersection. Pedal went right to the floor-no brakes. There was no separate system circuit that brought the truck to a halt, there were no dashboard warning lights engaged, and no brake fluid leak before that would alert me to a failure. Had to use emergency brake to pull over to a safe spot- vehicle needed to be towed to repair facility. Repair facility stated this is a common problem with these vehicles- but there was no recall or safety bulletins issued that they could locate.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #31

Apr 242014

Sierra 1500

  • 60,000 miles
Was approaching an intersection and light turned yellow, applied brake and peddle went right to the floor, coasted through red light and immediately parked vehicle. Towed to local garage and front brake line in the middle (under rock guard) severely rusted and failed.

- Niagara Falls, NY, USA

problem #30

Apr 182012

Sierra 1500

  • 75,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 GMC Sierra 1500. The contact stated that the brakes and ABS warning lamp illuminated sporadically. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technician diagnosed that the ABS control module was defective and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 75,000 and the current mileage was 130,000.

- Tomball , TX, USA

problem #29

Mar 092014

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 119,850 miles
Today I was on freeway in bumper to bumper traffic and when I went to stop my brakes fluttered and made a weird noise and I pushed with all my strength on brake pedal to stop and wasn't able to stop like 25 other cars in my life would have stopped and rear ended a minivan, there was minimal damage done to his van, my bumper has a little dent and his van has a small scratch, this I the third time in last week this has happened with the first 2 me thinking it was nothing because it only happens maybe 1 out of every 300 brake applications, I came home today and did some research on google and found out there are 1000S of trucks like mine with the ABS activating at low speeds causing crashes, I called GM and asked a few questions and all they said was my VIN does not qualify for ABS or brake recall GM had on these yr trucks. If my truck is doing the same thing as these trucks that qualified for recall why wont they fix mind because obviously its same problem, the GM guy I spoke with played dumb and act like he has never heard of someone having my issue, he is lying because there is tons of people on these GM forums that have called GM with same problem as mine with same results, please help me or let me know what recourses I have to have GM fix this ABS issues before someone gets killed, thank you

- Goodyear, AZ, USA

problem #28

Oct 012013

Sierra 1500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 208,010 miles
While trying to park my vehicle in a parking lot the brakes anti-lock system engaged. I was pulling forward to back into a stall. There was a person walking down the parking lot some distance in front of me. As I applied the brakes to stop going forward and start to back the ABS system engaged and I could not stop. The gentleman in front of me thought I was going to hit him, and quite frankly I thought that I was also. The pavement was dry, the temperature was about 62 degrees. This is a dangerous situation. There is nothing wrong with my brakes at higher speeds. I have read some things about issues with the ABS speed sensors on the wheels. If this is the case GM needs to recall all of these vehicles before there are serious accidents or deaths!!

- Lincoln, NE, USA

problem #27

Oct 132013

Sierra 1500

  • 79,059 miles
The contact owns a 2002 GMC Sierra 1500. The contact shifted into drive and applied pressure to the brakes however, the brake pedal abnormally traveled to the floorboard and the vehicle did not respond to braking attempts. The contact mentioned that the emergency brake was utilized in order for the vehicle to stop. The vehicle was towed to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the brake lines needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was repaired. The approximate failure and current mileage was 79,059.

- Holdts Summit, MO, USA

problem #26

Sep 082013

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 47,960 miles


The brakes on this truck completely failed without any warning. Could not stop the vehicle except for the emergency brake. The brake pedal went all the way to the floor. No warning lights, or any other indications of brake failure until there were suddenly zero brakes. I was very lucky that this didn't happen somewhere else, with my one-year old daughter in the truck. I see that the brake fluid is squirting out of one of the four steel lines just under the master cylinder when the brake pedal is pressed. Upon inspection I also see that all the lines look to be corroded. I intend to replace all the brake lines on this vehicle now due to the corrosion seen, as I do not believe it would be safe to drive otherwise.

- Melbourne, FL, USA

problem #25

Jul 112013

Sierra 1500 6-cyl

  • 59,000 miles
There was almost a crash! a car, from the right side, started to pull out in front of me at an intersection. I hit the brakes hard and felt what I thought was the ABS activating. Fortunately the car stopped and I was able to swerve around the car and I avoided a collision. It was close! a 1/4 mile down the road I applied the brakes to turn left into my destination and the brakes were not effective and the pedal went to the floor. We inspected the truck and found brake fluid leaking in the vicinity of the rear axle. We looked underneath and found the main metal brake line that goes over the gas tank to the front of the vehicle has ruptured. We called the local GMC dealer and found no recalls or service campaigns for this problem. The truck is now at a local independent shop for repairs.

- Derwood, MD, USA

problem #24

Jul 082013

Sierra 1500 6-cyl

  • 68,830 miles
While traveling at approx. 20-25mph, pulling away from my home, a small animal ran across in front of me. I hit the brakes, hard, and after a momentary feeling of brake pressure, the pedal went straight to the floor with no brakes whatsoever. I backed up into my driveway, jacked up the truck and placed it on jack stands. The underside of the truck was wet and dripping brake fluid around the ABS unit beneath the cab. My wife applied the brake while I examined the underside. An approx. 1/8in hole was found in the incredibly rusty and weak steel line running from the ABS to the left front where it joins the rubber line to the L/F caliper. Further examination reveals all steel brake lines are incredibly rusty, structurally weak and in danger of failure. This could lead to a very serious, catastrophic crash with the potential of fatalities. Further, all of the steel parts of the fuel lines are also very, very rusty and weak and with the high internal pressures and highly flammable and explosive gasoline inside are another serious hazard. I am a licensed master auto/truck and motorcycle mechanic. In nearly 50 years of driving I have never seen a brake line failure from such massive rust on a vehicle with such low mileage. This vehicle has only 68,830 miles on it. It is unsafe to drive. Many, many other owners of similar GMC and Chevrolet trucks have reported similar brake line rust and failure. Repair/replacement cost estimates can be as high as $1200 to nearly $2000. Brake line failure can kill. If ever there was justification for a safety related recall, this is certainly it.

- Dearborn, MI, USA

problem #23

Mar 062012

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • miles
I lost brakes on a return trip from shopping trip at a near by town. I was able to stop by using the emergency brake in time to prevent hitting the vehicle stopped ahead of me at a red light. I was able to get my vehicle home by driving at very low speed and using the emergency brake with without any further incident. I attempted to repair the corroded section of the line. While bleeding the brake lines another section rupture. Upon further inspection I discovered all the lines were corroding and needed to be replaced. Also all the couplings on the fuel lines are corroded. My truck has been sitting in my drive way for lack of the funds to get it repaired.the estimate for the brake lines to be repaired is about $1200. I haven't got a clear estimate for the fuel line couplings because the might also have to be replaced if they can't be repaired. The fuel lines other wise are not corroded.

- North Haven , CT, USA

problem #22

Jun 042013

Sierra 1500

  • 100,000 miles
A second brake line rusted through causing the pedal to go to the floor unable to stop quickly enough to avoid accident.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #21

Apr 172013

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
Brake line failure due to rust through. Truck pedal went to floor in heavy expressway traffic almost causing accident.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #20

May 162012

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
Failure of fourth ABS hub sensor on this same vehicle each costing between $450 - $600. To replace.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #19

Jun 152011

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
ABS sensor in hub failed this is one of four identical failures of the same part in this vehicle.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #18

Apr 172013

Sierra 1500 8-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
ABS sensor in wheel hub failure this is one of four identical failures of this part in this same vehicle.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #17

Jun 162010

Sierra 1500

  • 50,000 miles
ABS sensor in hub failed this is the first of four failures of this part on my vehicle. Each failure cost between $450 to $600 each to repair.

- Massillon, OH, USA

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