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Discussion Starter #1
My driver's side power seat has suddenly stopped working. ALL functions on the seat will not work, which would lead me to believe the cause is a bad fuse....BUT, the passenger side works fine. According to the owner's manual, both seats are on the same fuse. Is there a breaker or separate fuse that only controls the driver's side seat? I find it hard to believe that all of the motors under the seat or all functions on the switches were fried at the same time and so suddenly. My wife and I use very different seat settings, so I need to fix it soon. Can anyone help?
 

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'02 ETC CE, '04 CTS-V, '04 XLR, '13 XTS Platinum
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As a longtime electrical guy, I've always found that one of the best ways to start troubleshooting most electrical problems is with a schematic. A shop manual is a MUST for any DIY, --if just for the electrical schematics alone. For the price of an hour or two of labor, they're a real bargain. Chilton's, etc are okay, but the GM manual is really the best for most applications.

Okay, now that I'm off my soapbox, let's take a look at the problem. You've checked the (shared? --you're sure?!) fuse and it's good, so that leads me to believe it has to be common to one seat. Since the other seat works, you have something to compare it to. As Martha Stewart says, "It's a good thing."

Always start with the obvious. Get a flashlight and take a slow, methodical look under the seat, ensuring that there aren't any broken or chaffed wires, damaged or open (disconnected) connectors, that sort of thing. Follow the wiring harness as far as you can, from the seat switch, seat motor, to any controller, --as much as you can find without opening up the innards of the interior yet. Does everything look okay?

Bummer, I was hoping this would be easy. Let's move on. Again, using your trusty flashlight, unseat and inspect the connector faces, looking for corrosion or evidence of contamination (-remember that coke you spilled last summer when the cell phone rang while you were changing the radio station?) If all looks good, re-seat the connector(s) and try to operate the seat again. Still no good? Here's where it starts to get really fun.

If you're semi-proficient with a multimeter it's time to get into it. This problem is waiting, begging, teasing you to find it. If you're not handy, or intimidated by electrons find a new best friend to help you out, or get emotionally and financially psyched-up to meet your service department.

If you're still following this far, you're either holding a meter, chilling beer for your friend or throwing caution to the wind. I like that! Let's continue:

Using the good seat as a reference, draw a cartoon of the connector on the "good" seat controller switch first. With the connector disconnected from the switch, use an ohmmeter to "characterize" the switch in each of it's operating positions. Make a simple drawing showing each pin number (you can name them in any order as long as you do it the same for each switch.) On the "good" switch, measure across each pin until you see the different combinations of switch positions and "shorts" on the ohmmeter (0 ohms). Re-install the switch to it's connector and do the same thing on the other switch that controls the "bad" seat. If they don't match up, chances are you have a bad switch. That would be good. Otherwise, we'll have to dig a little deeper, (That could be bad, depending on your ability.) to ensure you're getting voltage to the switch.

Do the visual inspection and switch test, then report back what you've found and we'll take it from there.

PS: Tell me your experience level so I:

1) Don't talk down to you --my bad!
2) Lead you to a point where you're so stuck I have to get on a plane!!
Cheers!

CC
 

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Discussion Starter #3
CC: All that you suggest makes absolute sense. It sounds like one of those things that will take troubleshooting and time to figure out. (Better my time than the dealers at $80/hour!) I am not experienced at electronics, but checking connections and swapping the switches sounds easy enough. It's probably a bad wire, since all functions on the switch went at once. If the switch was bad, I imagine all functions would not give out at the same time (?) Thanks for the reply and I will get cracking on it tomorrow hopefully.
 

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You GO boy!! Write back and tell me you found a loose connector or something else embarassingly easy like a fried rodent with one outstretched clenched paw death-gripping a chewed wire. If it isn't painfully obvious, given enough symptoms, generate some new avenues to explore and help if I can. I live for this stuff!

Peace,

CC
 

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I have the exact same problem with my DeVille-97. I just bought it when the power seat on the drivers side stoped working. The passenger side is working but all engines on the driver side is dead. I have checked the fuses and nothings wrong there. Could it be a relay in the dirver side door that is burned or something like that? How do I remove the panels of the passenger door (without breaking something)?

I appreciate your help! Just moved to US from Sweden and I'm not that familiar with american cars.

// Rune
 

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Discussion Starter #6
FOUND IT!! Would you believe it was a stupid fuse??? The "BATT" fuse in the rear fuse block was pulled out. I had the car at the collision shop and they must have accidentally pulled the lead for my disc changer I had added on, which pulled the fuse out. I did not notice the cd changer was not working since I have not put the cd's back in the car yet. When I checked the paasenger seat before, I must have only checked the forward/reverse switch and not the other functions that are on the "BATT" fuse. Duh!!


Thanks to all for your help...lucky it was something stupid that took a couple of minutes to figure out, rather than spending hours and still taking it to the dealer. Electrical Engineer, I am not !!

Phil
 

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This is a great example of people helping people, 'this is a good thing'!
Congrats to philthy for $aving $ome ca$h and CC for his great advice.
Another important part of the electrical circuit is a good ground. I recently had an intermittent window go-up-down problem. I brought it in and had them check it. It turned out to be a bad ground at the window switch, which they repaired and now it works fine. Once I got stuck and the window stopped working (of course when it was half way up). I gave the side of the arm rest a good shot with the side of my fist (mostly out of frustration) and it started working. This is not the scientific approach CC has expertly given but it worked for me.

Rune, try double checking or replacing the "BATT" fuse in the rear fuse block, it seemed to work for philthy.
Good luck
Paul
 

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Wish my problem was as easy as Phils but...no! I have double checked all fuses (including replaced the "batt" fuse). After that I spent two hours under the seats trying to follow the wirening harness, disconnecting and reconnecting different connectors. Sometimes a actually got the seat to move a little bit but always in the same direction, no matter which switch I pushed. I thought that maybe I could find a "red line" by reconnecting one connector or pull in some wire and then try to move the seat but it was not the case here. It seemed to me very random when it was possible to move the seat or not. I just ended up having the seat in a very uncomfortable position :annoyed: I really don't know what to do. The test I made is leading me to think it's some kind of ground problem or an relay that doesn't work properly...
 

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I had the exact same problem and ruled out the fuse as the passanger side worked fine. I checked manually all the connectors from the front of the seat and no luck. I went to the back of the seat and wiggled all the wires and now it works. I didn't find the exact cause but i did isolate it to something in that area.

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(This thread has been dead for 10.5 years.................)
 

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As a longtime electrical guy, I've always found that one of the best ways to start troubleshooting most electrical problems is with a schematic. A shop manual is a MUST for any DIY, --if just for the electrical schematics alone. For the price of an hour or two of labor, they're a real bargain. Chilton's, etc are okay, but the GM manual is really the best for most applications.

Okay, now that I'm off my soapbox, let's take a look at the problem. You've checked the (shared? --you're sure?!) fuse and it's good, so that leads me to believe it has to be common to one seat. Since the other seat works, you have something to compare it to. As Martha Stewart says, "It's a good thing."

Always start with the obvious. Get a flashlight and take a slow, methodical look under the seat, ensuring that there aren't any broken or chaffed wires, damaged or open (disconnected) connectors, that sort of thing. Follow the wiring harness as far as you can, from the seat switch, seat motor, to any controller, --as much as you can find without opening up the innards of the interior yet. Does everything look okay?

Bummer, I was hoping this would be easy. Let's move on. Again, using your trusty flashlight, unseat and inspect the connector faces, looking for corrosion or evidence of contamination (-remember that coke you spilled last summer when the cell phone rang while you were changing the radio station?) If all looks good, re-seat the connector(s) and try to operate the seat again. Still no good? Here's where it starts to get really fun.

If you're semi-proficient with a multimeter it's time to get into it. This problem is waiting, begging, teasing you to find it. If you're not handy, or intimidated by electrons find a new best friend to help you out, or get emotionally and financially psyched-up to meet your service department.

If you're still following this far, you're either holding a meter, chilling beer for your friend or throwing caution to the wind. I like that! Let's continue:

Using the good seat as a reference, draw a cartoon of the connector on the "good" seat controller switch first. With the connector disconnected from the switch, use an ohmmeter to "characterize" the switch in each of it's operating positions. Make a simple drawing showing each pin number (you can name them in any order as long as you do it the same for each switch.) On the "good" switch, measure across each pin until you see the different combinations of switch positions and "shorts" on the ohmmeter (0 ohms). Re-install the switch to it's connector and do the same thing on the other switch that controls the "bad" seat. If they don't match up, chances are you have a bad switch. That would be good. Otherwise, we'll have to dig a little deeper, (That could be bad, depending on your ability.) to ensure you're getting voltage to the switch.

Do the visual inspection and switch test, then report back what you've found and we'll take it from there.

PS: Tell me your experience level so I:

1) Don't talk down to you --my bad!
2) Lead you to a point where you're so stuck I have to get on a plane!!
Cheers!

CC
I have the exact same problem my driver's seat does not function at all but passenger seat works perfectly fine.
My 1st thought was to check the fuse for the driver's seat.
But I do not see a fuse for the seats.
I found my fuse panel but do not see a fuse for the seats is there one and I'm just not seeing it because that is the 1st thing I want to check if there is 1 please help
 

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Refer to your Owner's manual for fuse functions and locations.

CCC
 
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