StabiliTrak Service [What is this message and how do I fix it?] • Road Sumo (2023)

If you're wondering what "StabiliTrak Service" means and what it means for your vehicle, you're not alone.

The StabiliTrak service message on your dashboard indicates a fault with the StabiliTrak system, a type of traction control found on all vehicles as a standard safety measure. Possible causes for the StabiliTrak service message are an input sensor, a faulty controller, or a bad connection.

The underlying issues and the procedure for turning the StabiliTrak system on and off vary from vehicle to vehicle and model to model.

Keep reading to learn more about StabiliTrak and what to do when the Service StabiliTrak message is flashing on your dashboard.

StabiliTrak service overview:What is StabiliTrak?

StabiliTrak Service [What is this message and how do I fix it?] • Road Sumo (1)

The StabiliTrak service notification indicates a fault with the StabiliTrak system, a type of traction control found on all cars as a standard safety measure. Possible causes include:

  • an input sensor
  • a faulty driver
  • a bad connection

These underlying issues and the procedures for turning the StabiliTrak system on and off may vary from vehicle to vehicle.

Before we begin to unravel the meaning behind the StabiliTrak maintenance message, it is important to understand StabiliTrak's role in driving and general safety.

StabiliTrak originally received General Motors' (GM) Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system, a type of traction control and standard safety feature found on all GM vehicles.

Since then, StabiliTrak has been used colloquially to refer to the traction control systems (TCS) of other vehicles, including Chevrolet, Toyota, Ford and Volkswagen.

Through a sensor or series of sensors, the TCS detects whether a car's wheel is slipping and whether to apply the anti-lock brake in the skid. The force is then redirected to the non-slip side and the driver can continue driving his car.

It's worth remembering that while all ESC systems are a type of traction control, not all traction control systems are electronic stability control systems. Traction control systems are only limited to preventing the wheels from spinning.

On the other hand, ESC systems can play an active role in changing vehicle direction.

StabiliTrak GM Service

For example, GM's StabiliTrak uses the brakes to prevent wheel slip and alter the vehicle's overall trajectory. You can even determine exactly when the driver lost control of the vehicle.

This early detection allows the system to match engine power and brake pressure in record time to prevent accidents.

StabiliTrak Chevy Service

Meanwhile, Chevrolet operates its StabiliTrak system via a steering wheel position sensor. This sensor compares the position of the steering wheel with the actual steering response of the vehicle.

You can adjust engine braking or torque based on what Chevrolet's StabiliTrak system is sensing. This allows the driver to maintain control of the vehicle and continue driving on the road.

(Video) How to fix ABS light, Traction Control, Stabilitrak

StabiliTrak in action: why is it important?

StabiliTrak's role in driver safety may be understated, but it certainly turns heads in adverse road conditions, especially in winter. When driving on ice or snow, you are much more likely to lose traction when cornering.

Sometimes the driver tries to move the vehicle in a certain direction, but the car does not follow. ESC systems like StabiliTrak come to the rescue. StabiliTrak detects the attempt, brakes the wheels that need it, and the car stops skidding.

It's Chevroletautomobiles, StabiliTrak responds to oversteer by applying the brakes to each wheel individually as needed. StabiliTrak then uses the outside front brake to bring your car back to normal.

In situations where understeer occurs, StabiliTrak engages the inside rear brake. Therefore, theAutopoints in the right direction.

Because StabiliTrak's detection and response is typically faster than most drivers, the system can literally save lives. This statement is supported by facts. In 2015, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that ESC systems in vehicles could save approximately 1,949 lives.

Federal law requires that all cars manufactured after 2012 have a traction control system installed as a standard safety feature. So you can ensure a safe ride through dead forests and snowy landscapes.

But what if something goes wrong with the StabiliTrak system? How we know? This is where the StabiliTrak service alert comes in.

StabiliTrak Service Alert - It's Not Just a Simple Error

The StabiliTrak Service message usually indicates that the StabiliTrak sensor is not working properly. But in some cases, the StabiliTrak service message may have other causes.

sometimes heStabiliTrak direction beaconmay be accompanied by traction control (TRAC) or anti-lock brake system (ABS) warning lights. When lit, these lights indicate that the ABS and TRAC systems are also disabled.

So you have to adapt your driving style accordingly.

Startup message StabiliTrak vs. Service StabiliTrak message

However, not all StabiliTrak-related reports are grim. These two messages may seem similar at first glance, but beware! The effects are very different.

StabiliTrak startup message

Firstly, the StabiliTrak startup message is actually a regular occurrence. This is usually because your vehicle's StabiliTrak system has failed to initialize at this time. The reasons can range from wrong tire sizes to road conditions.

If you have this StabiliTrak Service popup on your dashboard, you probably shouldn't worry. Your vehicle is fine. However, persistent StabiliTrak startup messages can be a symptom of an underlying problem.

In this case, it is best to take your vehicle to the nearest dealership or service center.

StabiliTrak Maintenance Message

However, a StabiliTrak service call means something is wrong with your vehicle. Sometimes a simple power cycle can be enough. If you have a Chevrolet, you can stop and start the engine. Sit down and wait fifteen (15) seconds. Restart the car.

When the message is over, feel free to browse and travel. If not, you should probably look into your local service center.

(Video) How to Diagnose and Fix Service Stabilitrak Traction Control Problem 2011 - 2015 Chevy Cruze

However, the StabiliTrak service message has no definite underlying cause. The following section presents some of the most common reasons for the StabiliTrak service message on your dashboard.

Common reasons for StabiliTrak service message

1. Input sensor

This is one of the most common reasons why theStabiliTrak Maintenance Messageappears on your dashboard. These faulty sensors could be wheel speed, steering angle or turning speed.

A quick replacement of the sensor affected by your vehicle model at the nearest service center should resolve the issue.

StabiliTrak Service [What is this message and how do I fix it?] • Road Sumo (2)

2. Defective control

In this case, a faulty powertrain control module (PCM) could be to blame. The StabiliTrak system works when electronic sensors in each wheel communicate with the PCM regarding stability and steering performance. This is especially important in adverse weather conditions.

3. Bad connection

Sometimes the StabiliTrak service connection may be caused by a fault in the GM LAN communication line. GM cars are built with a GM LAN communication line, a bundle of wires protected by a plastic cover that extends into the transmission.

A heat shield is bolted to the transmission to protect wiring and sensitive transmission components.

However, aging and prolonged exposure to heat can make plastic covering brittle and brittle. This leaves the GM LAN communication line unprotected. Part of the GM LAN wire can also be pressed against the heat shield, partially melting the plastic coating over the wire.

Grounding the GM LAN cable can interrupt communications with the body control computer, including the StabiliTrak system.

While the StabiliTrak service message can appear for a variety of reasons, another possible cause could be wiring and grounding issues.

How to fix a broken StabiliTrak?

How to fix StabiliTrak?

The StabiliTrak Service message means there is a malfunction. You can sometimes fix a StabiliTrak from inside the car with a simple power cycle.Motor:

  • Jersey and turn off the car;
  • Let rest for at least 20 seconds;
  • The message should disappear when you restart the car; AND
  • If not, then you should look into the service.

Watch the Kickin' it with Lalo video below to see another way to fix the Service StabiliTrak message. Your method works on GM 07-13 vehicles. Lalo demonstrates how he was able to do a quick and inexpensive repair using a 24-inch tire.Duralast DW424B change for starter batteryCabo:

Sometimes it's better to turn off StabiliTrak

While StabiliTrak or traction controls act as safety measures, they reduce performance. Reduced power may not be ideal if you and yourvehiclein a particularly difficult situation.

For example, nobody wants to be stuck in the middle of a snowstorm or on a muddy hill. Sometimes the best way out of the dark, icy hell is an extra boost. Depending on the vehicle and model, there are several ways to disable StabiliTrak.

Next, we will see how to disable StabiliTrak.

(Video) SOLVED GMC Sierra & Chevy Silverado Service Stabilitrack Service Traction Control

How do I turn it off on different vehicles?

See below forhow to turn off StabiliTrakfor different vehicles:


Engaging StabiliTrak is much easier with the Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) buttontoyota vehicles. All you have to do is hold the button for a few seconds.

This immediately disables VSC along with Traction Control (TRAC). When the process is complete, the panel will flash “VSC OFF” along with the “TRAC OFF” indicators.

2. I will

In general, this process works for Fords or similar vehicles. Methods may vary depending on the model. On some models, you must first press the traction control button and turn StabiliTrak off.

Then release the button immediately. Then press and hold the control button for a moment to turn traction control off.

However, on other models you will need to find the location of the StabiliTrak sensor:

  • To find the location of the StabiliTrak sensor, access the vehicle's menu and look at the steering wheel controls under the instrument cluster;
  • Look for the black arrow on the left side of the steering wheel;
  • Preta silk pressure;
  • Then use the down arrow to scroll down again to control the settings;
  • Upon reaching the settings, you accept;
  • After selecting this option, more options will automatically appear.
  • Then select DRIVING ASSISTANCE from the options and press the OK button again;
  • Once this is done, the DRIVE CONTROL option should be flashing on the panel. If it is, it means that the process has been completed;
  • All you have to do is check the leaflet and press OK.

Done? Great. Now you're good to go.


Volkswagen cars have a different process than the previous two:

  • First you need to put the vehicle in accessory mode while keeping the ignition in that position;
  • Remember not to start the engine;
  • Then go through the lights and press a triangle button. This button activates the warning lights;
  • As soon as the warning lights come on, step on the accelerator pedal five times. Do this slowly; AND
  • Pressing the gas pedal will propel the car forward and the traction control (TC) will kick in. This process is automatic.

Turning StabiliTrak off disables some safety features on most Volkswagen vehicles. It is highly recommended to reactivate the StabiliTrak system as soon as you are out of the mud or cold.

4. RAM, FIAT, Dodge Jeep e Chrysler

The process for these types of vehicles is much simpler. However, it is important to carry out this method with the vehicle stopped, but with the ignition on.

First press the ESC key. Hold it for about six seconds. Then a bell sounds. “ESC OFF” should appear on the instrument panel.

5. Chevrolet is GMC

On Chevrolet and GMC vehicles, look for a button with a car with wavy lines:

  • The button is on the center console. Once you find it, hold the button for a few seconds to turn on traction control.
  • Then see the list of instruments; AND
  • A Driver Information Center (DIC) message is displayed. This is more pronounced on some vehicles.modelsLike or GMC Sierra 2018.

That is all. Remember that turning off StabiliTrak also turns off traction control.

StabiliTrak Service [What is this message and how do I fix it?] • Road Sumo (3)

If you decide to turn the StabiliTrak system back on, don't worry. In fact, you don't have to do anything! Unlike other vehicle types, Chevrolet and GMC vehicles do this automatically when your vehicle exceeds 56 km/h or 34.79 mph.

Other concerns about the service's StabiliTrak message

Is it safe to drive when the StabiliTrak service message appears?

Yes! You are not in immediate danger if these messages appear on your dashboard. StabiliTrak is designed to detect and control the vehicle in a skid situation.

Since StabiliTrak is disabled, you must adjust your driving style whenever you experience landslides or other similar road conditions.

(Video) Stabilitrak Off Traction Off Solved Suburban Tahoe Silverado GM Trucks

However, the best option for your long-term safety is to visit the nearest dealership and have your system checked by a technician or mechanic. A quick scan of the vehicle can reveal diagnostic troubleshooting codes.

If you want to get it fixed or fix the vehicle yourself at home, it's important to assess and understand the underlying issues behind the message.

How much does StabiliTrak repair cost?

If you are looking to replace your vehicle's traction control or StabiliTrak, the average cost is between $80 and $90. This includes labor costs, which can range from $30 to $50 depending on the location and dealership. Pieces, on the other hand, can range from $20 to $40.

For some vehicles that are having issues with Service Stabilitrak reports and require sensor replacement, the cost can range from $250 to $400.

As the StabiliTrak service message has no definite cause, it is best to analyze possible causes before making a final decision on the next course of action. If none of that works, it's probably best to take your vehicle to the nearest dealership.


The StabiliTrak service message is areliableError indication in the vehicle's StabiliTrak system. As a standard safety measure, the StabiliTrak system protects the operator from wheel spin and prevents accidents in difficult road conditions.

Common causes of the StabiliTrak service message are input sensors, faulty controls, and poor connections.

It is sometimes beneficial to turn off the StabiliTrak system to increase power in an emergency. Shutdown of the StabiliTrak system may vary by model and vehicle.

While it is relatively safe to drive with the "StabiliTrak Service" message on the dash, it's best to consult a mechanic and take the car to the nearest service center.

To find the location of the Stabilitrak sensor:

  • Access the car menu and check the steering wheel controls under the instrument panel;
  • Look for the black arrow on the left side of the steering wheel. Press this black arrow;
  • Then use the down arrow to scroll down to control settings. When you get to the settings, accept them.

How to fix StabiliTrak?

A quick fix for the StabiliTrak service call is to stop and turn off the car. Then leave it on for about 15 to 20 seconds. The StabiliTrak Service message should disappear when you restart the car. If the message does not disappear, you need to contact customer service.

Read below:

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