Question about 2002 Chevrolet Suburban 2500

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I have a noise coming from what sounds like the 4x4 drive axle in front. I have change the gear oil and still have the noise. Any recomendations.

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I would check the wheel bearing/hub assemblies as I have replaced several of these. Usually they make a thrumming, rumbling, or growling type of noise that increases with speed and which may get louder or quieter when taking sharper curves at highway speeds. I"ve seen very few problems with the front differentials on these but have put in dozens of hub & bearing assemblies that are noisy or worn. Sometimes, but not always, if you raise the front tires off of the floor a few inches you can rock the top of the tire in & out a bit which can indicate a loose/worn hub but they can also make noise without having any looseness present so it isn't a perfect test. You may need to have the vehicle put up on a hoist where it can be more closely inspected. I have seen some pinion bearings go bad on the front differentials but it is fairly rare. Good luck, hope this helps out a bit.

Posted on Jul 07, 2010

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Chevy 2002 2500 series, 4x4 will not engage, when shifted into 4wd a kind of grinding noise comes from the front like gears are not meshing.


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When I make a turn going 30-35 mph and the weight of the vehicle is at maximum force, I hear a clunk from underneath the vehicle. What could be producing this sound?


Try changing the gear oil in the rear axle. Be sure to add a Slip Differential Additive paste to it (Autozone sells the paste and the gear oil).
The noise is coming from the differential in the rear axle and you will hear it when the vehicle changes from one direction to the other. Drive a hard zigzag line in a vacated parking lot and you should hear it at each shift in direction.

Change the front axle gear oil also if it had never been down. Usual interval for both is 30,000 miles.

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If it whines when in the 4x4 position but not at any other time then the noise you hear may be coming from the transfer case and is caused by the high gear load of driving both axles on a this type of surface. If you are driving in the 4x4 position on any dry hard surface you will hear some noise from the transfer case and usually it is a noticeable whine. Also, driving in 4x4 on a dry/hard surfaces greatly adds to the strain and wear on the power train. It would also be a good idea to have the both axles and transfer case fluid levels checked to be sure none of them are low. Hope this helps a bit and good luck!

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Do you have the electric shift 4wd? If so, start by checking if there is power to the actuator on the transfer case.

ok you hear a noise in the dash and a noise under the truck. there will be two noises under the truck one puts the transfer case into gear the other locks the fromt axle. raise rear axle let truck idle in 4x4 look under truck is front shaft moveing if yes the 4x4 motor on the front axle is not working remove dissasemble clean lube reinstall. if the shaft does not turn do this same procedure on the elec motor on trans case..good luck you can replace your oil pump it may help vehicle
Looking at the motor from the front, it is behind carb and to the right of the distributor. It has 3 wires on it.


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I had the same problem (same truck). I replaced the axle u-joint solved the problem. I recomend replacing both side at the same time.

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Sounds like front differential or front drive axle issues. Check the front differential gear oil then take er' to the dealership before you end up spending a bunch of $. Most people change their oil frequently in the engine but forget about flushing the transmission fluid and changing oil in the front and rear differentials. I have three Ford 4X4s. Two which really get used hard. The 93 has 311K miles and still runs excellent. Trans and differentials get a fluid change every 25K miles and moble one synthetic engine oil changes every 5k miles.

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