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GM Recalling 293,000 Cruze's for Brake-Assist Defect

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GM to recall 293,000 Cruze cars over brake assist defect - vagazette.com


DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Co will recall 292,879 Chevrolet Cruze cars in the United States due to a defect that can cause loss of the brake assist function in models with the 1.4-liter turbocharged engine and six-speed automatic transmission.

The largest U.S. automaker said on Friday that the problem occurred in model year 2011 and 2012 Cruze cars. GM said it was aware of 27 low-speed crashes, but no injuries, tied to the problem.
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Must be my lucky day. As stated in this forum by a previous poster.

"I love how people think its the end of the world when there is a recall on a car....look at the number of incidents compared to the number if cars sold! You've got about the same odds of winning the lottery as you do of this defect actually affecting your car! Relax and quit complaining!"

I was driving the vehicle last week and twice in one day I lost the power brakes. This is not a "cold start" issue. I had been on the highway for several miles when pulling up to a stop behind an 18 wheeler and realized that the car was not slowing as it should. I pressed the brake pedal to the floor and thought "that truck is backing up!". The truck was not moving, my Cruze would not stop. I did get it stopped before hitting the truck, but it was too close. (this is my wifes car, it's a good thing she was not driving) Happened again driving down a steep hill into a cross street. Luckily no one was on that street as I was halfway into the road before the car stopped.
The parking brake is a good option, but when taken by the surprise of no power brakes that reaction is not commonly practiced.
I called the dealer as soon as they opened and was told to bring the car in and leave it so they can drive it and check the brake pads. This car has less than 10K miles. It does not need new pads. I have driven cars after the engine dies and lost all brake boost, this is worse than that.
I informed them of the pending recall and they first acted like they knew nothing about it. When pressed, they stated that no recall has been issued "YET" and they have no replacement parts.
My question to the service writer was - "Can you do anything to correct this issue when I bring the car in"? They stated that they may have to keep the car until they get replacement parts. So what do I do in the meantime? A loaner car? I bought this car from that dealership and expected a little more than "We will take you home (or work) and we will have to keep the car until it is diagnosed and the problem corrected". (The last time I brought my 5 day old 2012 Cruze to this dealership for a minor issue, they totaled it in their parking lot. But that is another story)
If you experienced this brake issue (not just the recall) while you were driving it, what would you do?
 

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hydrasport, contact GM directly either by phone or by PM'ing the GM rep here on CruzeTalk. Either way they will need your VIN and dealership information. I don't know if you read this entire thread but I recommended that people either wait for their recall notice if they don't have a problem or to contact their dealership/GM immediately if they do. You fall in the latter category and your dealership either hasn't been notified or has not been authorized to admit they've been notified of this recall. My guess it's the former and it's time GM start educating their dealerships.

Reading the final comment in your post, I have to ask - Why did you take your car back to this dealership?
 

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This is rather simple.
IF your vehicle has not had this concern, wait for the recall notice.......always test the brake action before putting the car in gear.
If the swich sticks, you will have a high, hard brake pedal.
One or two pedal pumps will trigger even a sticky switch.

IF you have experienced the problem, at any time, whether your vehicle falls under the recall or not.....Get it to the dealer if you feel as though you can safely operate the vehicle.
The replacement switch's are available but there are not enouph in the pipeline to replace every switch on every recalled vehicle.

So, if you are having the problem, shut off the computer, stop whining, and get the thing fixed.......there is no dealer in his right mind that will let you leave without repair......unless you choose to take it in that condition.

Longest thread I ever read......for no good reson IMO.

Rob
 

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I was driving the vehicle last week and twice in one day I lost the power brakes. This is not a "cold start" issue.

...
If you experienced this brake issue (not just the recall) while you were driving it, what would you do?/QUOTE]
So... your problem is not a "cold start" issue, it's another issue that likely has nothing to do with the pending recall, why are you trying to connect the two?

I'd would either figure out the problem and fix it or have someone else fix it.

Trying to associate the problem you're having with the pending recall is a mistake on your part, you should let them (the service department of your choosing) work out what the problem is and go from there; you interjecting anything other than what the problem is will just confuse matters and may make it more difficult for them to diagnose.

And, if I were unhappy with my dealer, I would find another. I bought my car from one dealer and have it serviced at another - no big deal.

on another note: Personally, I disagree with anyone who thinks jacking the parking brake as a emergency brake is a good idea; trying to use the parking brake when you're not familiar with how the car will react is inviting trouble. I've tried using the parking brake to slow a car before just to see whether it was manageable and my conclusion is: it's not. YMMV, but I doubt it (LOL).
 

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This is probably not a cold start issue, this is probably a high idle issue. High idle is most common when cold starting and that's likely the reason for the association.

Any time the computer commands a high idle, like 1500 RPM, the engine will struggle against the torque converter to get the engine to that RPM. In a small turbo engine like this the manifold vacuum will drop and the power assist to the brakes will suffer. That's where the auxiliary vacuum pump comes into service, but if the switch fails to activate the pump, well, no power brakes.

Chances are, replacing the switch with a new one of the current design will fix the issue since few Cruzes actually have the problem to begin with. This should be seen as a good short-term remedy until the revised switch is available through the recall. If I had a car with this issue I would call the dealer and ask them to tow the car in (if you don't feel safe driving it in), replace the switch, then assuming the problem is temporarily cured, drive the car until the recall notice comes and then have them perform the recall.

In any case, I would imagine putting the transmission in Neutral would "avoid" the issue in two ways; 1) the car would be unable to propel itself forward, and 2) it would allow manifold vacuum to build, restoring power assist to the brakes.
 

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To everyone - GM is NOT saying this is a cold start only condition. GM does say that it is most noticeable on a cold start but not that it is limited to cold start. The microswitch that is failing is to engage the supplemental vacuum pump for the brake system can fail at any time, even in cars that it has not already failed in. Also, this recall is still limited to the 1.4T engine with the automatic transmission. The LS and Manual Transmissions are not currently in the recall.

If you have this problem, before going to your dealership, please go to www.safercar.gov and search for recalls. The NHTSA recall number is 13V360000. It's easiest to enter your model year, Chevrolet, and Cruze and then select all recalls. Download the attached documents and take them to your dealership when you go. They may need these documents when they call GM. I would also call GM and open a ticket with GM. Unless people do this GM will not boost the priority of getting this recall information to their dealerships any faster than required by US Federal Law.
 

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OBERMD and NYCruiser, thanks for your input. That is what I was looking for.
NYCruiser, "Cold start issue", I was only stating that the brake assist problem has occured with a warm engine on my vehicle. Someone else on this forum tried to say that it is related to a cold engine. Cold engine, warm engine, I'll let GM determine what is causing the issue and what the parameters are. Whether or not this a brake booster issue and related to this recall, that's fairly simple to determine. Yes, I have a vehicle with a brake booster issue and GM will repair the vehicle either via warranty or recall.
 

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Funny this recall just came out. Last week when i was backing out of the driveway, I had no brake assist at all. I still had brakes, but had to really stand on the pedal to get the car to stop before going into the street. This happened again this week when backing out of the driveway, so it was not quite as shocking. Otherwise, the brakes work fine the rest of the time. So far, the problem has only happened after a "cold start" when backing out of the driveway???
 

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Problem has reoccured again and this time I delivered the vehicle to the local Chevy dealer. They said that GM does not yet have a recall on this particular problem. They did talk to GM tech and was told to torque the brake lines on the master cyl and check all 4 brake calipers for loose brake lines. They checked the brake pads and drove the car 15 miles with no issues. (It has only happened 5 times now in 10,000 miles, what are the odds of it happening in a 15 mile test drive? though it is beginning to happen more frequently).
This is not a low, soft brake pedal like air in the lines and they understood this when I delivered the car to them. I was told that the car is ready and they found no problems.
After speaking to the service manager about the problem and reminding him that GM has already recorded 27 vehicle accidents directly related to this issue, the response was still "GM has not issued a recall and we cannot start just replacing parts".

"Customer Chevy care" are you really a GM rep? Do you work for GM or just an outside company contracted by GM to help track issues? I have run into that before asnd I was told by a local GM dealer that the GM reps do not get involved in issues directly with customers.

Some one on here had actually supplied 2 GM part numbers for the new switch and hose assembly. Are those part numbers for the new replacement parts or just part numbers for the old style parts?
 

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hydrasport, did you take in the information from the NHTSA web-site? If so, open a complaint with the NHTSA and reference the NHTSA assigned recall number.
 

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ROBBY

you stated: This is rather simple.
IF your vehicle has not had this concern, wait for the recall notice.......always test the brake action before putting the car in gear.
If the swich sticks, you will have a high, hard brake pedal.
One or two pedal pumps will trigger even a sticky switch.

IF you have experienced the problem, at any time, whether your vehicle falls under the recall or not.....Get it to the dealer if you feel as though you can safely operate the vehicle.
The replacement switch's are available but there are not enouph in the pipeline to replace every switch on every recalled vehicle.

So, if you are having the problem, shut off the computer, stop whining, and get the thing fixed.......there is no dealer in his right mind that will let you leave without repair......unless you choose to take it in that condition.

Longest thread I ever read......for no good reson IMO.

Robby,

If you have the part number of the new switch, I would really like to get that from you.
Are you you certain that the switch is available at this time?
My dealer nor the GM customer help line have the number of the new replacement switch that you have stated is currently available.
 

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Obermd, I supplied the dealer with GM recall #12213.

I talked to the dealer a week or two ago and I had hoped they had enough time to get some information on this issue. They have no current information about the recall and actually asked me for the part number of the new switch. ( the new switch that ROBBY stated was already available to the dealers).
 

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It sounds like your dealer is attempting to resolve this for you but not getting any assistance from GM. Definitely time to open a GM ticket if you haven't done so, and if you have, time to file a complaint with the NHTSA so that they know GM isn't moving forward on this recall.
 

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Opened a claim with GM tonight. The guys at the dealership have been helpful for many years.
You are correct about GM not helping the dealer with information in a timely manner.
The dealer has asked that I leave the car again tonight and they will pursue help from GM again tomorrow. That's after I requested a receipt for the days diagnosis, inspection and results and reminded them that GM is aware of the 27 accidents caused by this issue.
 

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FWIW I had the exact problem described in the recall (NHTSA Campaign ID # 13V360 is what I see in a recall email I'm signed up for), but I had the problem before there was a recall. I had to go to my dealer twice to get it solved. Neither time could they replicate the issue, but after the second time, the tech did say he was aware of a TSB about the electric brake assist failing intermittently. Pulling from memory here, I think he said there was a vaccum actuated switch, and that he had to replace the switch and a vacuum hose as well.

I was fortunate that I'd taken the car in for the problem BEFORE my warranty was up the first time - I was about 1000 miles over when I took it back the second time, and the dealer actually fixed it.

What I don't know is if I have a part that is going to fail again because it is identical to the original, and has a design flaw, or if I have the "fixed" parts. I had the oil changed at the dealer 2 days ago, and they had NO record of a recall from GM, and had no information at all about whether the parts they used in my repair were different than what they took out.

I will say that the "high hard pedal" wasn't very high - basically, the pedal would feel normal, then stop about halfway to the floor. It wasn't just hard, it just STOPPED. I weigh 250+ pounds, and even with two feet standing on the pedal, I could not budge it. I nearly hit my neighbor's car while backing out of my driveway twice, believe me, I STOOD on the pedal :)

2011 Cruze 2lt
1.4l turbo
automatic transmission
 

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hydrasport?

Currently the dealers (9/20/13) here in the Chicagoland area are replacing the switch in question with the currently available part #.
They are not trying to duplicate the problem.......if the customer describes the problem and it sounds close to the current failure, they just replace the switch under warranty.
HOWEVER, you did not mention if your car still is under warranty.
If it is not, pay for the replacement.......when the recall arrives there are instructions supplied regarding full re-imbursment from G.M.
The switch's being supplied are the new part# in MOST cases unless the dealer has old stock.
I am unable to determine if a new part# is being used yet.....my dealer has not recieved any verifyable info.

FYI....my dealer has been replacing these things for almost 6 months now.....I am told that even if the switch was replaced under warranty, it will likely be replaced again for the recall.
They recently had the failure on one of the service loaner Cruze's......happened every morning.
I tried it out.....definatly a potental for damage....seemed like no pedal response at all, just like a old car with a bad booster....lots of leg required.
Hard to catch it though.....one bad application and then the switch would trigger the pump and instant assist.
For the remainder of the day, nobody in the shop that drove it had a problem......till the following A.M.

Biggest problem here is G.M.'s insistence on duplication of the problem......my dealer chose to ignore that and just replace as long as the description fit the failure.

In your case, I suspect the dealer will call their rep who will instruct to replace the part regardless of duplication......keep in touch.

Rob
 

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The dealer replaced the vacuum pipe, that is what the invoice shows. The car is under warranty. They test drove the car for 2 days and could not duplicate the problem. Gm customer service stated that recall #12213 is a valid recall number but it appears that the dealers do not have access to the information in the recall yet. I did receive a rock chip in the windshield as a result of the test drives. They ordered a new windshield before even telling me about the chip.

Seems like the "Chevrolet Customer Care" on this forum has left this issue alone. I did not mean to offend by asking questions about the level of help that I might expect.
 

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hyrdrasport - good for your dealership, for replacing the vacuum pipe and for ordering a new windshield when they realized their test driving had resulted in damage to your car's windshield. The Chevy Customer Service account has been having technical problems lately and XtremeRevolution and AutoGuide staffers have been working on fixing them.
 
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