SS #670 Assorted hacks

Here is a list of hacks I've done to my SS. Many involve OEM parts.

Hack Description
Antenna Spiral-wrapped radio antenna cuts wind noise
Battery Terminal Covers Battery terminal covers protect against shorts
Body Control Module Resolder relay to fix retained accessory power
Engine Oil Life Reset Alternate way to reset the oil change light
Ebrake Handle Shim ebrake handle
Exhaust hanger squeak Install Teflon washer
Fuel Tank Cap Revised gas cap hangs away from body
Garage Door Opener Console mounted garage door remote
Hatch Release Fix Cure a stick hatch release
Headlight Switch Lamp Replace burned out headlight switch module lamp
Horn Splash Shields Protect horns from water
HVAC Cable Adjustment Eliminate binding in the temperature control knob
Oil Cap Mobil 1 logo oil filler cap
Remote Spare keyless entry fob and keys
US Flag Patriotic static cling decal
Weatherstrip Lubricant GM weatherstrip lubricant
Window Motor Window Lift Motor Upgrade

Antenna

My car came with a black 18" AM/FM antenna. Newer cars have antennas with spiral staking (like my cell phone antenna). This is supposed to cut down on wind noise. I think it looks cool so I went to my dealer and had my buddies at the parts counter lookup the part number of one of the cars on the lot that had the new style antenna (GM 15739183).

[Antenna] [detail]

Battery Terminal Covers

I noticed that the battery cables had lips on them as if they were designed to accept a protective cap. One day a friend saw caps on the battery of a 1995 Lumina; that was all I needed to order and install red (GM 12010050) and black (GM 12010049) caps on my battery cables.

[Battery cap]

Body Control Module

Over the years I've had a very intermittent problem where the radio would turn off for a few seconds and turn back on. When it started happening more frequently I did some research and found that this is a common 4th generation F-Body issue. The cause is one or more bad solder joints on a relay. Symptoms include radio, retained accessory power and/or power windows intermittently working.

[BCM logic board] [BCM logic board]

When you get the BCM opened up look at terminals of the larger relay. The picture on the right shows what mine looked like before resoldering it.


Engine Oil Life Reset

GM's Oil Life System is pretty slick; it keeps track of track of RPMs, engine coolant temperature, engine load, air intake temperature and vehicle mileage and uses heuristics to estimate when the oil should be changed. At somewhere between 3000 and 7500 miles (less than 3000 if you drive more aggressively), it illuminates the oil change light indicating it's time to change the engine oil and filter.

The owner's manual says the way to reset the oil change light is to turn the ignition key to the run position with the engine turned off and then press and hold the trip/oil reset button for 12 seconds. If the light was on, it will flash before going out. (If you reset it before it trips, there is no visual indication).

The problem with this procedure is that it also resets the trip odometer. However, the factory service manual shows an alternate method that works nicely. It says to turn the ignition key to the run position with the engine turned off and then press the throttle to the floor 3 times within 5 seconds.


Ebrake Handle

At some point my ebrake handle got a little loose. When I went to tighten it up, I discovered the handle is riveted to the arm. To fix it, I found a piece of scrap black plastic of the appropriate thickness and inserted it between the handle and the arm. This worked best on the side without the rivet.

[Ebrake handle drivers view] [Ebrake handle passengers view]

Exhaust hanger squeak

Since the beginning, my SS had a mild squeak from one of the SLP dual-dual exhaust hangers. Eventually I made a washer from a piece of 1/32" Teflon. Squeak eliminated!

[Exhaust hanger with washer] [Exhaust hanger installed]

Fuel Tank Cap

The version of the gas cap that came on my SS had a long tether that you were supposed to hang on a hook on the inside of the filler door. Later a service bulletin was issued (#00-06-04-036) for a revised part (GM 22616286) that has a shorter tether that attaches to the door so it hangs away from the paint.

[Revised part] [Gas cap]

Garage Door Opener

I made better use of my console ash tray and mounted a garage door opener into it. I cut off the bottom of the ash tray, fitted some 1/8" ABS plastic into it and wired up some push button switches I had laying around.

[opener] [detail]

Hatch Release Fix

At some point I started having with my electric hatch release sticking, especially in cold weather (not that it really gets that cold in California!) I did some research and the consensus at both blackcamaro.com and installuniversity.com was to add a second spring to the mechanism.

[hatch fix]

I learned the trick is all about finding the right spring. Most of the ones I tried were way too stiff and a few were too long or too short. Eventually I found one that was just right.


Headlight Switch Lamp

The (tiny) lamp that illuminates the controls in the headlight dimmer/switch module is not listed in the owner's manual or the factory service manual. However, it is in listed in the dealer's parts computer (GM 10195525). It's a T-1 neo-wedge base lamp that uses a PC board punch pattern. The one I got is a JKL Components Corporation CNW1-7219. The specs say it uses 60 mA @ 12 V and outputs 1.89 lumens with an average lifetime of 16000 hours.

[Lamp] [Dimmer/Switch module]

It's pretty easy to change; gently pull out the air duct bezel and then use a small flat blade screw driver to gently twist 90°.


Horn splash shields

When I went to the dealer to buy a horn to replace one that died, one of my parts counter buddies told me about a service bulletin for a Chevrolet truck that gave a part number for a horn splash shield (GM 15071417). This is supposed to keep water from getting inside the horns where it causes corrosion and eventual failure.

[packaged] [shield]

As it turns out, the OEM horns are made by Fiamm and are cheaply available from many auto parts stores as well as amazon.com. The high/low horns are identical to the OEM versions but you do need to remove and reuse the weatherpack connector adapters from the OEM units. The stock horns are rated at 125 dB. There are also louder versions called the "Freeway Blaster Horn" which are rated at 130 dB. Here are the various part numbers (with links to amazon.com).

[Fiamm horns]
  low high
GM 12368062 12368061
A/C Delco D1920C D1921C
Fiamm 72012 72002
Fiamm Freeway 72112 72102

HVAC Cable Adjustment

Over time my HVAC temperature control knob would bind when attempting to set it to full heat. It was necessary to flip back and forth briskly to achieve the desired setting. Finally I peeked at the factory service manual and discovered the cable adjustment procedure:

[HVAC cable adjustment]

I found mine was set to about 0°, probably due to cable stretch. Adjusting it correctly eliminated the binding condition.


Oil Cap

[Mobil 1 5w30] [Mobil 1 5w30] Mobil 1 is the factory fill engine oil for Corvettes. And Starting in October of 2001, all LS1 engines get Mobil 1 from the factory. For these and other reasons, I'm running Mobil 1 oil in SS #670.

The Corvette oil filler cap (GM 12555685) is embossed with the Mobil 1 logo and is interchangeable with the cap on the F-Body's LS1. It looks like and is a reminder to others what kind of oil you're using.


Remote

I like having an extra set or two of keys stashed away so I bought extra remotes (GM 16245100) and had my dealer make extra sets of keys. The instructions in the owner's manual for enabling a new remote are pretty straight forward.

[Remote]

US Flag

I'm not really big on putting decals or bumper stickers on my vehicles but after the events of 9-11, I installed a static cling US flag on the left side of the rear hatch.

[US flag]

Weatherstrip Lubricant

GM Weatherstrip Lubricant (GM 3634770, also known as Krytox) is a silicone-free grease used for dressing weatherstriping. It works great but is expensive.

[Krytox]

It's listed in TSB (#99-08-64-016A) as being one of the two products that should be periodically applied to weatherstrip surfaces. A cheaper option is dielectric silicone grease (GM 12345579 or equivalent).


Window Lift Motor Upgrade

Like most 4th gen F-Bodies, the power window motors in SS #670 were pretty slow. A number of sources recommend the Siemens WL42014 as a strong replacement so I tried one.

The procedure in the factory service manual says to remove the regulator and motor as an assembly and then drill out three rivets that hold the motor to the regulator. Instead I used the procedure shown on shbox.com which removes the motor and leaves the regulator in place.

I used a Dremel tool to make the holes cleaner holes and more precisely centered. Here's a picture of the passenger side door after creating the new holes:

The new motor comes with screws and nuts but I upgraded to 6/32" X 1/2" panhead stainless screws and Nylocks.


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[SS #670 The Super Sport Owners Association] [SS #670 Miscellaneous] [SS #670 EMail Craig]
[SS #670 Mods: Sway bars] [SS #670 Mods: Shocks and struts] [SS #670 Mods: Springs] [SS #670 Mods: Panhard bar] [SS #670 Mods: Lower control arms] [SS #670 Mods: Subframe connectors] [SS #670 Mods: Adjustable torque arm]
[SS #670 Mods: Differential] [SS #670 Mods: ZR1 wheels] [SS #670 Mods: Shock tower brace] [SS #670 Mods: Brakes] [SS #670 Mods: Hurst billet plus shifter] [SS #670 Mods: Heel/Toe throttle extension plate] [SS #670 Mods: Driveshaft safety loop]
[SS #670 Mods: Radiator] [SS #670 Mods: Oil cooler]
[SS #670 Mods: Differential vent tube] [SS #670 Mods: Shiftlight] [SS #670 Mods: Airbox lid] [SS #670 Mods: Polyurethane bushings]
[SS #670 Mods: Auto Meter gauge pod] [SS #670 Mods: Disable CAGS] [SS #670 Mods: Disable daytime running lights]

[SS #670 Mods: EFILive] [SS #670 Mods: LS1_Edit]
[SS #670 Mods: Battery] [SS #670 Mods: Valentine One remote display] [SS #670 Mods: Headlights] [SS #670 Mods: iPod integration] [SS #670 Mods: LEDs] [SS #670 Mods: Cellular phone] [SS #670 Mods: Zaino Bros' show car polish]

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Craig Leres