How to Replace a Blower Motor in a Suburbanby Marion Cobretti
The blower motor in your Suburban with standard use should typically be durable enough to last the lifespan of your truck. However, individual use varies, as well as the odds of the blower motor just being defective in the first place. The first sign of damage to the blower motor is low air circulation. This happens because the motor has worn down, most likely due to running it on its highest setting all the time. The blower motor will either stop working or squeal loudly when in use. You can replace the Suburban’s blower motor in the driveway at home. It should take 45 minutes or less to do with a few minor tools.
Raise the hood and use a socket wrench to remove the negative cable from its post on the battery. Once removed, wrap the entire metal terminal at the end of the cable with electrical tape and then position the cable away from the battery. The negative cable on the battery should be all black and right on top of the battery next to it you should see a small minus symbol.
Open the front passenger’s door and position yourself so that you can see under the dashboard. Locate the blower motor. It looks like a metal can protruding out of the firewall behind the glove box.
Reach up under the dashboard and unplug the wiring harness connected to the blower motor. Tuck the harness to the side. Pinch the rubber cooling tube right where it enters the blower motor and pop it out of position from the motor.
Remove all of the bolts from around the base of the blower motor with a socket wrench. Do not lose the bolts; place them in the cup holder for safekeeping.
Pull the blower motor outward from its housing and lower it down from beneath the dashboard. Set the old blower motor to the side of your work area. Raise the new blower motor up into position and insert it back in the housing.
Return all of the bolts around the base of the blower motor by hand. Tighten all of the bolts until snug with your socket wrench and then tighten each of them an extra quarter turn.
Plug the blower motor’s wiring harness back up to it and reinstall the cooling tube back into its original position. The cooling tube simply pops back into place, just as you removed it.
Unwrap the tape on the negative battery cable’s terminal and discard it. Connect the cable back to its post on the battery and tighten its securing bolt by hand. Set your 3/8-inch drive torque wrench to 12 foot-lbs. and secure the cable into position. Shut the hood and start your Suburban’s engine. Check the functionality of the new blower motor to make sure it works on all settings.
- "Chilton's General Motors Full-Size Trucks, 1988-98, Repair Manual"; Chilton Editors; 1999
- "Haynes Repair Manual: Chevrolet & GMC Pick-Ups 1988-1995 Suburban, Blazer, Jimmy, Tahoe, Yukon 1988-1995 2WD & 4WD 1992-1995"; Ken Freund, John H. Haynes; 1995
- You should be able to remove the blower motor without disassembling the dashboard. If you need more space to do the repair you can either remove the glove box or keep it open during the repair.
Things You'll Need
- Socket wrench set
- Electrical tape
- 3/8-inch drive torque wrench
- Use care while lowering the blower motor from under the dashboard. Lower it slowly while making sure that it doesn’t get caught up on any wires that cross it.
Marion Cobretti began working as a freelance writer in 2006. His work appears on Newsvine and other websites. Cobretti completed a three-year course in automotive technology and is currently seeking an Associate of Applied Science at Macomb Community College.