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post #1 of (permalink) Old 05-19-2005, 07:45 AM Thread Starter
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Looking at Subs - 96 or 98? Any difference?

Hi all,
I'm looking at Suburbans as a new tow vehicle for my Jeep. Have appointments Saturday to look at a 96 and a 98. Both have about same mileage -130-140K. Both tow packages, both barn doors, both 4WD, both very well maintained. No major work done on either, 98 has a new fuel pump.

Is there any appreciable difference in these years, from a motor/tranny/fuel system standpoint that would make one or the other more desireable?

The guy with the 98 said that some electric sensor had to get replaced in the steering wheel because it has some system that keeps it going straight, and the wheel would jerk to the right every so often????

Too much new fangled stuff for an old guy like me, but they both look like nice trucks from the photos.

Thanks for any and all input.
Much appreciated.
Pete
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 05-19-2005, 09:37 AM
 
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Re: Looking at Subs - 96 or 98? Any difference?

Hey Pete,

For the steering, sounds like the issue is the steering sensor, and I can't remember what it's called now as I write this. But basically it's a speed-based sensor that is supposed to be tighter when going fast and looser for turning when going slow (like when towing and need to turn around with a trailer, etc.).

Fuel pump on these years is a common failure. Doesn't happen often but it DOES happen. I've already lost one on my '98.

Really the major differences between those years -- the color!

Another issue with my '98, and not sure if the '96 is affected as well, are the intake manifold gaskets that leak. GM has a new set of gaskets to fix that issue, but you may want to check if one of them are leaking.

Other than that they should pretty much have the same axles, same 4wd system. I think perhaps the '98 would have 4-wheel anti-lock brakes vs. the '96 (don't know if they came with it or not). Probalby both have drum brakes either way.

With as many "issues" as I've pointed out I still love my '98 K1500 truck!

Hope that helps.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 05-19-2005, 10:09 PM
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Re: Looking at Subs - 96 or 98? Any difference?

The steering sensor is the EVO. JR covered much of the trucks and their typical issues. Between the two there is really no difference. Drive both and take the one you feel more comfortable about. Chances are your gut feeling will get you into the better truck anyway. I'm sure you'll have little things come up, but you will with any truck over 100k.

Sounds like the 98 had the major PITA fixes done already. So, you know that's warrantied and good to go for a while.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 05-20-2005, 08:08 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Looking at Subs - 96 or 98? Any difference?

Thanks for the info guys, really appreciate it. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

I read up on the Electro Variable Orifice stuff - seems like a typical failure part. Also read some on the intake gasket problem -- I will be sure to look for coolant in the oil, water out the tailpipe, etc.

It'll be down to overall condition then. I just wanted to avoid getting into a situation like "Don't get a 97-99, because they used the Crap-o-matic muffler bearings in those years..." [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]

Thanks for your help.
Pete
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 05-20-2005, 10:14 AM
 
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Re: Looking at Subs - 96 or 98? Any difference?

Actually the intake gasket will likely start leaking above the water pump or out the back of the intake by the distributor....and drip down on the driveway once it gets a little worse. Not a difficult job to replace, but time consuming.

Oh and yes on the drum rear brakes....both years.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 05-24-2005, 10:27 AM
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Re: Looking at Subs - 96 or 98? Any difference?

Tranmission was tweaked and improved for 97+, passenger airbag added in 97, HVAC was improved in 97, 97 K1500's recieved tighter turning radious, 96 5.7's had 250hp, 97+ has 255hp. 1998's received a different drivers steering wheel... Ummm, bout it. I'd go for the 98 personally.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 05-25-2005, 08:17 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Looking at Subs - Bought the 98!!!!

Thanks to all who posted -- I bought the 98!! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]

Drove it home last night, about an hour and 15 minute trip.

What a great truck! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/gituar.gif[/img] Drove awesome.

Pewter Metallic with Indigo (dark blue) Metallic two-tone.
Got it for $5500. 140K. Two sets of tires (winter/summer), totally dealer maintained, all paperwork, original window sticker (over $40K new!!), new fuel pump, new evo sensor, woman driven, not a rip inside.

I'm pretty stoked. I'm sure I'll have lots of questions on it, but it's home.




Thanks again
Pete
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 05-25-2005, 01:45 PM
 
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Re: Looking at Subs - Bought the 98!!!!

Nice buy, i'm a big fan of the '88-'98 chevy trucks. Solid reliable platfroms that last for ever. If you want to make a tow muel out of it i'd say slap in a sf14 bolt, big trans cooler and trans temp guage, and some air bags or helpers in the rear.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 05-25-2005, 01:46 PM
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Re: Looking at Subs - Bought the 98!!!!

Very nice [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/40BEER.gif[/img]
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 05-25-2005, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Looking at Subs - Bought the 98!!!!

Yes Andy, she's got the "HD Aux. tranny cooler". It was listed on the window sticker. 3.73 gears, and heavy duty trailer tow package.

I was considering add-a-leafs in back, but I'll wait and see how she sits with the jeep loaded up on the trailer and see. She hasn't towed all but once or twice in her life supposedly, so it shouldn't be bad.

Thanks,
Pete
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