How to Replace a Chevy Uplander Batteryby Allen Douglas
The Chevy Uplander minivan has a reasonably open engine compartment allowing good access to replace the battery when necessary. The front of the Uplander was designed to look like a truck, which provides extra work space under the hood when repairs are needed. The minimum battery requirement for the Uplander is 660 cold-cranking amps, although higher amp batteries also fit.
Pull the hood release latch. It is located at the bottom left foot panel in the driver's seating area. Walk around to the front of the van. Release the hood by pushing the release lever to the right. The hood release lever is located under the front of the hood in the center. Lift the hood and set the hood prop rod in place.
Place the gloves and safety glasses on. Vehicle batteries contain lead acid which is harmful to eyes and skin. Wear these items to avoid injury.
Use a 9/16" socket wrench to remove the bolts holding the corner cross-frame bar located above the battery. There are two bolts on the front of the bar and one bolt on the back of the bar behind the fuse panel box. Slide the cross-frame bar out from under the fuse panel box removing it from the engine compartment. Use caution when removing the bar to avoid damaging the fuse panel box including the wires under the box. Set the bar aside for later use.
Use a large flat-head screwdriver to pry apart the metal battery terminal connector on the negative (black) wire. Pry it open enough to allow removal of the connector. Pull up on the wire connector terminal, removing it from the negative battery terminal post. Tuck the negative battery connection wires behind the battery to keep them from touching the negative terminal on top of the battery.
Open the plastic shielding around the positive battery connection by squeezing the two tabs on the shield and pulling the shielding upward.
Remove the tightening bolt on the positive battery cable using a 7/16" wrench. Use a large flat-head screwdriver to pry apart the metal battery terminal connector on the positive (red) wire. Pry open the connector enough allowing removal. Pull up on the wire connector terminal, removing it from the positive battery terminal post. Tuck the positive battery cable behind the battery.
Using a 1/2" socket wrench, remove the battery-holding wedge. The wedge is located at the bottom of the battery on the back side. Once the bolt is removed, the wedge is removable. Take out the wedge and the bolt and set them aside for later.
Remove the battery from the engine compartment. Angle the right side of the battery upwards slightly, if needed.
Dispose of the battery properly. The battery is a lead-acid battery and is considered potentially hazardous. Most stores that sell vehicle batteries are equipped to dispose of the lead-acid batteries properly. In most cases, the batteries materials are recycled.
Using the steel wire battery terminal cleaning tool, carefully remove any dirt or acid build-up on the inside of the metal battery wire openings.
Lift the new vehicle battery into place on the battery tray with the terminal posts positioned towards the back. Keep the battery cables tucked behind the battery to avoid connection with the terminals.
Position the battery holding wedge with the long side against the battery, positioned at the groove in the bottom of the battery. Insert the 1/2" bolt and tighten.
Attach the positive terminal cable to the positive terminal post on the battery. Tighten the 7/16" bolt, securing the cable firmly. Flip down the plastic shield on the cable terminal until the two plastic tabs click into place.
Place the opening of the negative battery wire connector on top of the negative battery terminal post and press down until fully seated against the top of the battery. Use pliers to carefully squeeze together the metal wire connector, if the cable is loose.
Slide the cross-frame bar back in place above the battery. Use caution when sliding the bar under the fuse panel box. Insert the three bolts to secure the bar and tighten using the 9/16" socket wrench.
- Use a socket wrench with a 6-inch extension to speed up removal of the bolts.
Things You'll Need
- New battery
- 9/16" socket wrench
- 1/2" socket wrench
- 7/16" socket wrench
- Steel wire battery terminal cleaning tool
- Large flat-head screwdriver
- Safety glasses
- When the battery is connected use extreme caution to avoid touching anything that conducts electricity, including hands or body parts to both battery terminals at the same time. Also avoid touching the positive terminal and any part of the vehicle body that is grounded at the same time. Doing so can cause personal injury or damage to the battery or vehicle electrical system.
Allen Douglas has been a techical writer for major scientific and engineering companies for 20 years. He writes articles specializing in technical topics on eHow. He holds a Master of Science in engineering from the University of Toledo and has practiced as a professional engineer in the Midwest and Southern United States.