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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
2010 Chevy traverse LT AWD, 185k miles. Engine replaced at 150k.

I have a mystery problem that I cannot for the life of me solve. I am a good DIY mechanically inclined person but not a professional. I do have a scanner but not a hugely expensive one.

The problem(s) are as followed:
There is no maintaining speed on the highway at all due to a constantly dancing RPM needle that scares the crap out of me. It feels like it's starving for fuel and the engine begins to act like it is while trying to maintain a constant speed say 60-70 mph. It does this at all times but is way more noticeable at those speeds. My speedometer will stay at 70mph and my foot will calmly keep steady pressure like normal driving to maintain however the RPM needle is diving up and then down and then up and then down usually at 2000 rpms but is now doing it at 2-2 .5 and 3.

Problem 2:. I have to constantly unplug the positive and negative cables on my battery to reset the speedometer. After I drive a while and say I stop for gas, turn the vehicle off and do my thing.. when I get back in and start the vehicle my speedometer will not reset to 0 but will instead stick at 60, 120 or be completely upside down until I disconnect the battery. This is seriously annoying. I do not think the two different issues are related but who knows anymore.

I have replaces in the last 30 days:
Spark plugs, ignition coils, throttle body and throttle pos sensor, air filter, fuel injectors and fuel rails along with the fuel rail wire harnasses, fuel rail pressure sensor, air intake cleaner tube, mass airflow sensor, 1 o2 sensor.

Last week my dealership told me it was an O2 sensor on bank 1 sensor 1, and If not the o2 sensor then it would be the ECM.

So day before yesterday I replaced the ECM and did the passlock steps to relearn any theft device and is working fine but problems are still there. It definitely wasn't the ecm and the o2 sensor is the only code thrown.

This problem seems to be getting worse as more time passes and the more I drive the vehicle. I have informed my dealer that it wasn't the ecm and they ensure me the rpm issues are coming from the o2 sensor but I kind of feel like they are only saying that because of the code. That code has been on the system since before I purchased the vehicle from them. Never have I ever had these issues until the last 4 months. If anyone knows or has any ideas please let me know. It's my only vehicle and I'm supposed to be placer mining in Nevada but am too afraid to drive across the country with it acting the way it is. I have considered the body control module being the root cause of the speedometer issues but I don't know if it would also cause the rpm issues as well. Thank you for your time.
 

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Replace the O2 sensor. Sensors are a way more common item to fail than a ECM.
At your mileage the O2 is way overdue. O2's should be changed when plugs are changed since they are a wear item and are one of the main sensors controlling fuel mixtures.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
So you think the o2 sensor on bank 1 sensor 1 could actually make the RPM needle dance up and down constantly when trying to maintain speeds? I've never in my life seen an rpm needle move this much. There is no constant. It's always moving up and down rapidly.

I know it's not the ecm because I already replaced it. I just wouldn't think a bad o2 sensor would cause such a huge engine performance issue like this without causing the engine to misfire.
 

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Get your P code issues sorted out first.
Stepper motors in gauges are known to go bad.
There are 4 codes in the GM family, P,B,C and U. They all need to be read, that's the first step the dealer does. If you can't read all 4 then you are not fully prepared to diagnose the vehicle.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If I was fully prepared to diagnose the vehicle on the same level the dealer was.. I wouldn't have posted on this forum out of desperation to try and find someone who may have also experienced the same thing. That is what this is all about isn't it? Sharing and communicating and helping each other? Backhanded remarks like that are insulting. You obviously know I have no clue what you are talking about bc of my original post when I said I have a scanner but not an expensive one and that I was no professional. Don't bother commenting if it's just to throw salt on a wound.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
And it just so happens my dealer is not being honest with me. I can't trust them to do anything let alone follow a set procedure on diagnosis. I am going to change the o2 sensor today and see if it helps. I'm also going to change the battery. For some reason this issue is making me think it's something electrical due to the speedometer flipping upside down every time I turn the vehicle off.
 

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If I was fully prepared to diagnose the vehicle on the same level the dealer was.. I wouldn't have posted on this forum out of desperation to try and find someone who may have also experienced the same thing. That is what this is all about isn't it? Sharing and communicating and helping each other? Backhanded remarks like that are insulting. You obviously know I have no clue what you are talking about bc of my original post when I said I have a scanner but not an expensive one and that I was no professional. Don't bother commenting if it's just to throw salt on a wound.
I have a headache, is it sinus or do I have a brain tumor ?
Internet diagnosis of a computer on tires requires specific tools and skills.
If your are than thin skinned the too bad, so sad.
I was sharing and trying to give direction and education as this is how we share information and how the process of self repairing a vehicle is done. Nothing backhanded just facts that obviously you can't handle.
Here's a fact , there are no set touch this and it's fixed solutions. You don't trust a professional so have at it throwing the parts dart.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I would say you are the sensitive one there buddy. Maybe work on your people skills before joining forums and trying to communicate with the world. You obviously didn't actually read the original post well enough to even begin to offer help. Making obvious statements and telling someone how you feel about their diagnosing the situation is not helpful. It's the instrument cluster FYI. For the speedometer issue, the o2 sensor has been replaced and did not correct the rpm issues or engine performance problems. As I knew it would not. There are no other codes. As stated in the original post I've already thrown alot of parts at it but I do appreciate your kind words. As I also stated in the original post I'm looking for anyone who has had the same issues that I'm having to see if anyone figured them out. I wasn't looking for someone to drill me on proper mechanic etiquette or tell me I'm a failure at diagnosing my own vehicle. Thanks anyways though I wish you the best but you obviously arent someone who has had this issue like the purpose of the post is requesting.
 

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Ninotek - I think YOU'RE the sensitive one here. We can't read your mind, only what your wrote. And like it or not, we all read posts differently. Someone took the time to try to help you. But rather than saying, "thanks for the input," you criticized it (I see no "backhanded remark.") That doesn't win accolades on forums.

That being said, RPM dancing sounds like the crankshaft position sensor to me.

Please don't criticize my suggestion OR my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
If I did misinterpret then I apologize. I've been extremely stressed out over this vehicle and the issues it's causing me as well as the financial burden by not being able to drive to where I'm supposed to be working right now. On top of that, his comment about having a brain tumor set me off because I do actually have a brain tumor and I thought it was a bit tackless. However I do also know he doesn't know that so no harm no fowl. Thanks and sorry.

The crankshaft position sensor is a new one I haven't had mentioned to me as a potential issue before. I will look into that. Anything at this point is possible. Hopefully I can figure the problem out soon and get back to driving across the country instead of being stuck in a parking lot 700 miles from home and still 1200 miles from my destination. I don't have the tools or the time to diagnose things in sequential order like I was told to do because I'm literally stuck on the side of the Rd. That's why my post was made looking for anyone who may have had similar issues or if anyone has corrected said issues before. Anyways I apologize If I came across too strong for anyone's liking I'm just really stuck here in a dire situation and my dealership won't help me in the least. I will update this post with the resolution to the problem once I find it... Maybe it will help someone in the future who ends up in the same situation as me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
So after replacing the bank one sensor one o2, the vehicle didn't have a check engine light and was still running the same with the crazy rpm dancing as usual. I went to the u pull it and extracted two instrument clusters, I cleaned them up and decided on the one that looked the best and swapped it out with mine. That did in fact fix the speedometer issue getting stuck at 60, 120 and sometimes upside down.

Two days after the o2 sensor was replaced as well as the instrument cluster another check engine light came on. This time it said, misfire on cylinder 1,5 and ,3. Which is the same bank that sensor was on. It also threw a code for the cat immediately following that newly replaced o2 sensor and was a high limit code.

The reason I was not able to figure out that it was the cat causing the rpm issues is because the dealership told me it was perfectly fine after they replaced the o2 sensor. I'm assuming they said this because there was no code for the cat at the time and wanted to get me out of there as customers were lining up at the door for repairs. The other reason I didn't completely set my mind on the fact that it was a cat was because I was still getting a good amount of exhaust out of the tailpipe. Which looked and smelled normal. However, it did cross my mind several times and I kept telling myself it had to be something else because it just didn't seem like a normal symptom of a bad cat.

However upon further investigating, the 2010 Chevy traverse Lt AWD along with many other years and types have three cats on the exhaust. One on the left at bank 2, right at bank 1 and further down after the Y pipe and just before the muffler at rear of vehicle. I think what has been happening is that bank one cat that comes right off the firewall melted or clogged from running the vehicle with a bad o2 sensor for so long causing a certain fuel and air mixture increasing it's temperature and eventually causing back pressure of exhaust fumes to travel back up into the engine. This I beleive is the cause of the dancing RPM issue I've been dealing with. The reason I wasn't having typical clogged cat symptoms was because there was still the other side operating correctly allowing exhaust to travel to the Y and out the rear of the vehicle and thus I wasn't noticing any bogged down or major loss of power issues like is usually the case I think. With half of the exhaust system working properly it mislead me to other parts on the vehicle and for that I paid a hefty price and spent alot of time that could have been used elsewhere.

My new cat will be installed this coming week if I can get the nuts off the flange. Without a lift that job is particularly hard to do while laying on your back with little to no room outside of what a pair of rhyno ramps can provide. I tried and failed when the firewall side nuts wouldn't budge on the flange. Even after letting pb blaster and liquid wrench soak in for long enough. I am going to try these special extractor sockets next and see if that does the job and if not I'm going to cut it off. I will let the forum know if replacing the cat definitely fixes the dancing RPM issue.. I do beleive it will. But I will update when the job is done. Thanks
 
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