2005 Tahoe with 290k rebuild/rehab thread

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I have posted a few times on here about the high mileage 2005 Tahoe that I bought off my parents and have been daily driving since the unfortunate troubles and eventual lemon lawing of my 2021 F-150. I wanted to make a post and continually update it chronicling my progress through my interior "rehab" and other cosmetic/mechanical fixes I am doing.

For a little back-story, this 2005 Tahoe was a North Carolina truck, spotless as can be. In 2015, it made its way up here to Western New York and my Dad bought it for my Mom. She drove it until buying her 2018 Tahoe in 2021. It was undercoated the first four winters. Currently body wise, couple of spots of rust, but nothing bad. Frame has some light surface rust but nothing concerning. In Feb/March I went through the whole truck mechanically and made it 110% road worthy.

I plan to drive this old pig for a while, so here are some of the things I will be doing to it. Don't matter much to me if the outside is worse for the wear, but a vehicle of mine needs to be nice and clean on the inside. So I'll start with the interior.

The interior looked like your usual 292k interior, sagging headliner, dirty carpet, grime, worn seats, etc.

Pulled the headliner and took it to a local shop to have new material glued to the panel. These look cool with no headliner and WOW what a chore to pull.
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With the headliner out, I tackled the rear mili-connector that runs the rear wiper and heated rear window element. Couple of pins were shorted out.
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Went to the junkyard, found a Suburban with a clean and non-burnt connector. De-pinned the good wires, re-pinned them, and spliced in new ones for the bad/burnt ones.
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I rented a U-Haul van to transport the headliner with the help of my Dad. Here is the after of the headliner installed. I also replaced the two automatic HVAC temp sensors located on the top of the board.

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Next, I pulled all of the seats to clean and re-cover where needed. Before and after of the passenger front seat. I clean the heck out of the top cover and ended up adding a new bottom. The seatbelt was also super grimy. So I took a pail with hot water, half scoop of Tide powder... added a drill brush attachment to my drill and ran it in there for about 20 minutes creating a vortex like effect and it proved to be just enough agitation to clean the seatbelt fantastically!

Before
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After
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Three out of four of my door handles were binding. After dismantling them, I found the metal pin that allows the handle part to pivot was rusted causing them to seize. With not many good aftermarket choices, and wanting to avoid paying a body shop to paint these handles, I ended up drilling out the metal pins and re-assembling them with stainless steel bolts, nylon lock nuts and plenty of grease. Also cleaned and lubed the sticking driver door lock. All work as good as new!

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redhat

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A previous owner of the Tahoe must've stored tires against the rear door panels as they had these terrible tire print stains. So I ended up re-painting the door arm rests with SEM Vinyl color matched paint. I also painted the door speaker grilles as they had some light rust.

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dishdude

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Next, I pulled all of the seats to clean and re-cover where needed. Before and after of the passenger front seat. I clean the heck out of the top cover and ended up adding a new bottom. The seatbelt was also super grimy. So I took a pail with hot water, half scoop of Tide powder... added a drill brush attachment to my drill and ran it in there for about 20 minutes creating a vortex like effect and it proved to be just enough agitation to clean the seatbelt fantastically!

Tide is great for interior and engine cleaning!
 

redhat

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Next was carpeting. I planned to replace the carpet with aftermarket ACC carpeting. After setting the aftermarket carpeting in the truck, I quickly realized this job was not for the faint of heart. So I chickened out and tried cleaning the OE carpet. The OE carpet wasn't worn, just dirty. I am so GLAD I did, it came out awesome. Used a drill brush and some degreaser. It looks like new.

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Also cleaned a lot of old stains under the carpet against the body metal. Looks like some previous mold. It was gross!

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During

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After - LIKE new, so happy!

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WOW what an impovement! If you show these old cars a little love they look preety good.
 

redhat

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Been working yesterday and today on the Driver seat. Yesterday was fixing the power lumbar. Upon further investigation, the cable operating part of this was broken off of the motor/gear.

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All fixed. Was also missing the spring keeping the line taught. So I swapped over the gear/attached line and the spring from a donor seat to this one.

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Later I will be diving into re-assembling this upper-half of the seat, reapplying the cushion, adhering the new upper seat heater and re-covering with the new leather cover. Also, will be adding a new bottom seat heater to new bottom foam and re-covering that cushion.

Tomorrow I have to grind out some rivets that secure the front and rear vertical adjustment motors. GM's answer for if any of these motors fail to replace the whole seat frame. :) yeah good one. I have a donor driver seat that I have been harvesting other components off of (i.e. the lumbar parts), so once I can grind these rivets off I'll re-fasten these motors with some good old bolts. More pics tomorrow.
 

redhat

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That's a Whole Lotta Love right there. Not many guys will dive this deep into a 17 YO 300K vehicle.
Thank you, yeah truck means a bit to me being my Ma's for quite a while. That and the old girl has a lot of fight left in her, almost feel bad putting her out to pasture. Maybe I personify cars too much, but this sure beats a car payment right about now. The new trucks were sweet but the payments weren't.
 

redhat

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Repaired the front and rear vertical adjustment motors/linkage yesterday. I had to drill and grind a "permanent" pivot rod/fastener and replaced with a 2 1/2" long flange bolt and a nylon flange nut. Works great now!

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New seat motors from donor seat frame.

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They connect to the seat adjustment arms with these e-torx bolts.

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Mounted and working fine.

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redhat

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One thing this Tahoe always did on the Driver seat was that it seemed as if the Forward and Reverse seat control of the power seats was backwards. I had always figured it was something connected backwards or something of that sort. While going through this seat base, I found nothing wrong. Doing some digging online, came to find out there was a programming update thru GM SPS to correct this exact issue. So at a later date I'll hook up a J-box and do some SPS programming to fix this. Such a weird thing to happen.

Anyways, on-to some more work.

With the seat frame ready, set and go, it was time to re-cover the Driver seat. New upper and lower leather, new upper and lower heaters and new bottom foam.

I will not lie, it was a chore to do. It looks alright, but you can tell the older 'back' foam doesn't fill out the new cover as well as it could. Unfortunately you cannot buy back foam from what I could find. Also, the bottom foam didn't fit great. But I gotta keep telling myself, this is a 17YO truck with 300k and ANYthing is an improvement.

Also got a bunch of the plastics washed and snapped back in place. The B-pillar plastics, sill plate and front pillar plastics. Also put in my new front WeatherTech mats. I have been itching to try out the new FloorLiner HP. Really really like these mats. IMO they have addressed the shortcomings of the other original FloorLiners with these as they are more pliable. Also, there are no anchors that snap into retention holes. The whole back has knobbies to grab onto the carpet.

Next task I think will be changing the AC compressor clutch. Replaced the high side valve that was leaking, new orriface tube, new drier, sucked it down and charged it. It worked OK for a day but the clutch didn't seem like it was grabbing great. Took it off, cleaned it up and re-shimmed it and it worked better. May need a new clutch.

More updates and pics later this week.

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