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1990 Chevrolet 1500 Pickup Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the 1990 Chevrolet 1500 Pickup based on complaints from actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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18
Known Problems

The quick-connect fittings for the heater hoses tend to leak engine coolant. This problem commonly occurs because the metal housing has become brittle, which can break and cause leaks.

The air conditioning compressor may develop an abnormal noise and require replacement. We recommend that whenever an AC compressor is being replaced for a noise condition, a filter kit should be installed to prevent any metal particles in the system from damaging the new compressor.

Power brake systems using "hydro-boost" may leak power steering fluid from the hydro-boost unit located behind the brake master cylinder. Replacement of the hydro-boost unit is the common repair to correct this concern.

An oil leak may develop from the distributor o-ring seal requiring replacement of the seal.

The windshield wipers may not work intermittently due to a faulty wiper motor control board. Our technicians tell us that lightly taping on the wiper motor when the fault occurs should temporarily get the wipers working again. Some vehicles were recalled for this problem and some were not. You will need to check with your local dealer to find out if a specific vehicle was included.

The alternator may fail causing the battery to go dead, or an abnormal noise may develop. The dash warning light may or may not illuminate. A failed alternator will require replacement.

The distributor may develop internal faults. This can cause a rough running engine or stalling condition, the Check Engine Light may or may not illuminate. Our technicians tell us that the distributor should be overhauled or replaced to correct this concern.

Our technicians highly recommend that the transmission is serviced every 30,000 miles to avoid problems and maintain optimal operating order.

Our technicians recommend flushing the brake fluid every 60,000 miles.  Brake fluid that is dirty may cause problems in the brake system.

One or more heater & AC (HVAC) air delivery and/or temperature mode door actuator may fail. This can result in incorrect air delivery or temperature. If this occurs, fault code(s) stored in the HVAC control module should be available to assist with diagnoses.

The anti-lock brake system (ABS) front wheel speed sensors are prone to failure. When a sensor fails, the ABS warning light may illuminate and/or the ABS system may activate erratically.

The intake manifold gasket may develop and external engine oil or coolant leak. In some cases, an internal coolant leak may occur causing coolant to mix with the engine oil. Our technicians tell us that operating the engine  with a coolant/oil mix can result in internal engine damage. Replacing the intake manifold gasket should correct these leaks.

The fuel pump may fail causing the engine to stall and not restart. Our technicians recommend replacing the fuel filter every 30,000 miles to help prevent undue strain on the fuel pump.

The power door lock actuators may become slow to operate or stop working completely and require replacement.

A coolant leak may develop from the water pump. The engine may overheat as a result of the coolant loss. A leaking water pump should be replaced.