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5.3l Tune Up Questions
jdcountryboy91
post Jun 9 2010, 08:45 AM
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I have a stock 02 tahoe z71 with the standard 5.3L. It is right at 115000 miles. I bought it from a dealership so I really dont know the history on whats been changed and what hasn't. What are some things to change that will make this thing run better and get a little better mileage. I get no more than 15mpg around town and I don't drive it like a race car. It just doesn't have the get-up and go you would expect from this engine. A friend suggested new spark plugs, fuel filter, and air filter. I looked at my air filter and it has a little bit of junk in it but not too bad. I ran a can of sea foam through the intake and fuel system a month ago. Anything else I should change/check?

thanks,
Kristian


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2002 Chevrolet Tahoe Z71, Black, Magnaflow 12279, Spectre CAI, 15" Kicker Solo Classic, Infinity Kappa 62.9i door speakers
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Gary P
post Jun 9 2010, 09:15 AM
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Kristian - First off, WELCOME to the forum! clapping1.gif

Next, congrats on selecting a fine truck. thumbsup.png . I think the MPG's you're seeing are about in line with what to expect, it's a heavy truck. You'll do a little bit better with highway driving, but don't expect to get 22-23 MPG out of it. On a trip, I might see 18, usually 17 avg, but only if it's all highway mileage.

Since you don't know the history from the dealer, is there a way to contact previous owner? They may have some service records for you, or at least tell you what has been done to it. The plugs and filter changes are a good place to start.

If you're looking for more pep, strongly consider getting a BlackBear Tune. They are a supporting vendor here, and some great people too. notworthy.gif

Other things to consider is a driveline fluid change. Transmission fluid and filter, transfer case fluid, and fron/rear differential fluids too. All are easy to do in your own driveway or garage, so it's just a matter of parts pricing, and some of your time. thumbsup.png


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2012 Summit White Silverado 2500HD 4WD Z71 Crew Cab, New 8/31/12 ... with a Black Bear Performance tune - Love it!
2005 Summit White Tahoe 4WD Z71 (For the wife.... finally!)

2002 Silverado 1500 LS, Ext cab, 4WD...Gone, but not forgotten.... SOLD 8/31/12

How to Donate to Z71T-S.com ==>
http://z71tahoe-suburban.com/iboard/index....c=25714&hl=
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jdcountryboy91
post Jun 9 2010, 09:43 AM
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Thanks Gary! I'm glad to find a forum just for my truck. Coming from the Jeep world I'm used to all kinds of forums but I had to dig a little to find one for the Chevrolet.

I will look into everything you suggested.

thanks again,
Kristian


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2002 Chevrolet Tahoe Z71, Black, Magnaflow 12279, Spectre CAI, 15" Kicker Solo Classic, Infinity Kappa 62.9i door speakers
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tahoe tony 925
post Jun 9 2010, 11:30 AM
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A K&N air filter is always popular on these trucks and these motors and dont cost too much. i would suggest one! Also the tune is great as well. and welcome to the forum! its h best one out there, so many avid respectful users, its awesome.

tony


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yes i own a Ram. But i still have a chevy key chain!
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ThorsChariot
post Jun 9 2010, 04:52 PM
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I average right now 16/18 MPG, I have seen low twenty on the DIC when cruising down the highway on a level stretch of road but the roads around here are not that level so it drops the average MPG down and I do more back roads driving than anything else. I would do the a full tune up and change the plug, wires and filters and PVC valves along with the fluids such as the front and rear end, Tranny and transfer case as who know when they were serviced.
The Seafoam is always good and a better breathing air filter will help but after you take care of the tune up I would opt for a BlackBear Tune as this will get you the power your looking for and as with me and many others the MPG went up after my tune to about 1 to 1.5
Not a whole lot but it adds up, The others thing I did to get better MPG and more power other than the BlackBear tune was a Spectre cold air intake and replaced the mechanical fan to a electric one.


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2004 Z71 Tahoe
BlackBear Performance tune, 285/70-17, Front and rear brush guards, Antenna delete mod, 4 into 1 headlight mod, Rear rack light mod, Spectre CAI, E-Fan mod, Blacked out Z71 rims,De-screened MAF, Flowmaster American Thunder 50 series.Gone but not forgotten :(
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Rich2007Z71
post Jun 9 2010, 04:55 PM
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Welcome to the group Kristian.


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ThorsChariot
post Jun 9 2010, 05:01 PM
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Oh yeah I forgot you will want to also clean the MAF and throttle body.


--------------------
2004 Z71 Tahoe
BlackBear Performance tune, 285/70-17, Front and rear brush guards, Antenna delete mod, 4 into 1 headlight mod, Rear rack light mod, Spectre CAI, E-Fan mod, Blacked out Z71 rims,De-screened MAF, Flowmaster American Thunder 50 series.Gone but not forgotten :(
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Offtrac
post Jun 9 2010, 05:11 PM
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Plugs
Wires
Fuel Filter
Transmission Flush
Front, Rear Diff Flush
Transfer Case Flush
Clean MAF
Seafoam Top End
Seafoam Gas Tank

That should do it


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2006 Silverado Z71 4x4 5.3L L33 High Output
BlackBear 93 Tune, 285 BFG AT's, Smitty Built Bull Bar, Westin Running Boards,
Tow Mirrors, PIA 520's behind grill, 5000k HIDs,4 High Mod, SPECTRE CAI, V1
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jdcountryboy91
post Jun 9 2010, 07:07 PM
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Thanks for all the welcomes and advice!!! So far I'm loving the Tahoe. I'm just wanting to keep her running for a long time!


--------------------
2002 Chevrolet Tahoe Z71, Black, Magnaflow 12279, Spectre CAI, 15" Kicker Solo Classic, Infinity Kappa 62.9i door speakers
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Brian_D
post Jun 9 2010, 10:01 PM
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Welcome aboard. Your mileage is about right. A regular tune-up as noted above will likely help, but it won't make a tremendous impact as your mileage sounds right. It's a big heavy truck and it won't ever get good mileage. The best I've ever seen is ~ 18.1mpg but that was a very long trip...like 400 miles on the highway. Around town, I get ~ 12-14 mpg on average. thumbsup.png


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Tempus Fugit. Memento Mori.
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Ken
post Jun 9 2010, 10:41 PM
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Welcome! I will second what has been said above.

Yes, these are heavy trucks but that weight, in my mind, is a good thing.


--------------------
Pretentious Black 14 Escalade, like those 6.2 Liters!

Black 05 Z71 Burb 3.42s Sold 10/2016
Magnaflow Corsa Sport Catback, 50W fogs - Sylv 885, US Flag Bowtie
Bilsteins, Escalade 18s
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2002 Red Tahoe - nice truck but a bit too short. Sold to a friend in 2005.
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Gary P
post Jun 10 2010, 05:28 AM
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Kristian - Just another thing or two.... As has been mentioned already, changing out the differential fluid is a good thing, along with a transmission fluid and filter change. The good thing about having a 2002 model is, you should already have a drain plug on your transmission pan and rear axle housing cover! clapping1.gif These two items were deleted in the newer model years. dry.gif

In my experience, I used the rear end differential drain plug, and still decided to remove the rear differential cover, just to remove all of the old fluid and any gunk that might have been inside. To my surprise, using the drain plug actually drained all of the fluid, and there were very very little "sludge" in the housing. In my case, I would not hesitate to just use the drain plug the next time, leave the housing cover on, and refill. However, being that you do not know the history of this truck, removing the cover to see if there is any sludge in there might be a good thing. thumbsup.png

On the transmission pan, you'll have to remove it anyway to replace the filter, but if you can get the drain plug out (they are sometimes quite stubborn) draining the hot transmission fluid through the plug makes the job less messy. biggrin2.gif . Then, after most of the fluid is drained from the pan, remove the pan to replace the filter. Simple job, and you'll feel great knowing it's all been done correctly!


--------------------
2012 Summit White Silverado 2500HD 4WD Z71 Crew Cab, New 8/31/12 ... with a Black Bear Performance tune - Love it!
2005 Summit White Tahoe 4WD Z71 (For the wife.... finally!)

2002 Silverado 1500 LS, Ext cab, 4WD...Gone, but not forgotten.... SOLD 8/31/12

How to Donate to Z71T-S.com ==>
http://z71tahoe-suburban.com/iboard/index....c=25714&hl=
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BielzZ71
post Jun 10 2010, 07:58 PM
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One of the biggest increases I noticed was getting ride of the air box and putting in a K&N FIPK. It gave A LOT of mid-range to the truck. Before when I would step on the gas it would kind of fall on its face until the RPM's built up. Now there is instant throttle response.



--------------------
2002 Tahoe Z71
* K&N FIPK Intake
* Street Scene grille
* Efans
* Rear air deflector (GM)
* Sony overhead DVD
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