The question is what is "very thin"? As in several micrometers thin? Pete, you probably don't want to know just how thin, very thin really is. Let's just say the nickel on our bumpers, whether they are front or back and Chevy or GMC or any other brand, is about as thin as a sheet of alluminum foil. The layer of chrome over that is MUCH thinner. And that goes the same for most other chrome plated parts, be they plastic or metal. The layer of nickel, or in some cases copper, provides most of the corrosion resistance and a base for the chrome to be electroplated on while the layer of chrome is mostly just for show. In fact, in the old days, bumpers were sandblasted as one of the final stages of the production process to "crack" the chrome to promote even corrosion and to help prevent the chrome from peeling. You can see evidence of that as a slight haziness in some bumpers that are older. Cheers, lvlagnum.
Travis, that deffinately sounds like a quality control problem. Even with normal use on salty winter roads, there is no way they should blister like that. The only thing other than poor quality control I can think of which might cause blisters like those are harsh chemicals or extreem heat changes in the wheels such as in a siezed brake. Cheers, lvlagnum.
Travis, those are some nasty looking blemishes. You say you noticed them AFTER you polished the wheels? Is it possible those blisters were there BEFORE you polished them? And what kind of product and process did you use? I'm wondering if the polishing or cleaning product you used might have had something to do with it? I've heard some wheel and tire cleaners can dammage clearcoated alloy wheels and I'm thinking it might be possible for that to happen to chrome-clad wheels too? Although, it could be a quality control problem at the parts supplier. I used to work at the factory which made the GMT-400, GMT-800 and GMT-900 Chevy Silverado front bumpers, amongst many others, and now and then we had instances of the chrome peeling right off the bumbers during and after production. Our bumpers consisted of nickel electroplated over the steel to provide corrosion resistance and with a very thin layer of chrome over that to make it look good. I know some electroplating processes use copper as a base for the chrome but ours used nickel. From what I've seen, most chrome plated plastics use copper as the base layer. Good electroplating can be very difficult to do and even with strict attempts at quality control, some bad parts get through. Cheers, lvlagnum.
Adam. I have no idea if there is a formal TSB out on this issue or not. There are members posting on this forum who are dealership service managers, service advisors and service technicians who I'm sure could tell you much more about it than I could. I do know when I took my truck into the dealer, the service advisor knew right away what the likely problem was. That would lead me to believe it's quite a common occurrence. If you have access to a reliable code reader, I'm sure there must be a fault code which shows up. Ask around and perhaps a member of your family or a friend might have a code reader. If you tell us where you're from, one of the other members of this forum might be close enough to help you out. If that doesn't work, perhaps someone reading this could help out by telling you which brands and models of code readers are the best to buy. I know there a few inexpensive ones which are available at most good autoparts stores. Please let us know what the results are. Cheers, lvlagnum.
It MIGHT or it MIGHT NOT BE but part of the problem COULD be your Tahoe's four-wheel-drive has seldom or never been used. Just like the emergency brake and the airconditioning system, the four-wheel-drive system should be used several times a year, even if they're not needed, to keep the linkages freed up and the seals lubricated. Another possibility could be it sounds like a situation I had with my '03 Silverado Z71. I thought it needed a new switch but when I took it back to the dealer to be repaired under warranty, they said all it needed was to have the PCM reflashed with an update. They reflashed it and I never had that problem with it again. Please let us know what your particular problem turns out to be. Cheers, lvlagnum. PS: Never use four-wheel-drive on dry pavement as it is not good for the system. Find some loose sand, mud or snow to give it some excercise. Just like a loyal dog, a four-wheel-drive vehicle needs to be let loose for a good run every now-and-then.
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