The Service StabiliTrak message (also called Service Stabilitrak Light or Stability Track Light) is a warning signal that appears when something is up with your GMC/Chevy’s StabiliTrak System. It can appear when the car is in motion or idle.
While the service stabilitrak dash light is supposed to appear during wet or slippery road conditions, if you are seeing the message appear randomly it’s usually due to a faulty sensor or old wiring.
In this article, I’ll explain everything you need to know about the Chevy/GMC Service StabiliTrak Warning Message including what the message means and how to fix it.
What does it mean when it says Service Stabilitrak?
The Service StabiliTrak warning light means that there is a problem with the StabiliTrak system, which is a stability control system that helps to prevent skidding and loss of control in most Chevy and GM vehicles.
The system uses sensors to monitor the vehicle’s speed, steering angle, and lateral acceleration. If the system detects that the vehicle is starting to skid, it will automatically apply the brakes or reduce engine power to help the driver regain control.
Usually the warning light appears due to:
- A problem with the StabiliTrak sensor
- A problem with the StabiliTrak control module
- A problem with the brake system
- A problem with the traction control system
- The driver has disabled the StabiliTrak system
Below you’ll find an example of what the Service Stabilitrak light should look like:
You can also use a compatible OBD2 diagnostic tool to identify the specific issue before talking to the shop.
How To Reset Service StabiliTrak Light
1. Turn off the engine
Ensure that your vehicle’s engine is completely turned off before proceeding with the reset process.
2. Disconnect the battery
Locate the vehicle’s battery, typically found in the engine bay. Using the appropriate tools, carefully disconnect the negative (-) terminal of the battery. It is essential to disconnect the negative terminal first to avoid any electrical mishaps.
3. Wait for a few minutes
After disconnecting the battery, wait for approximately 5 to 10 minutes. This waiting period allows any residual electrical charge to dissipate.
4. Reconnect the battery
Reconnect the negative (-) terminal of the battery and ensure it is securely fastened. This step establishes the electrical connection.
5. Start the engine
Start your vehicle’s engine and allow it to run for a few minutes. During this time, the system performs a self-check, and if the underlying issue has been resolved, the “Service Stabilitrak” light should no longer be illuminated.
You can also watch this video showing you how to reset your Service Stabilitrak Light in 3 minutes without a scan tool:
How To Reset Service StabiliTrak Light With a Scan Tool?
As stated earlier, StabiliTrak issues are system problems. There are too many variables at play. You should only mess with it if you have experience dealing with Stability Control problems. Otherwise, seek for help from your mechanic.
See the steps in the infographic below:
Best scan tool to scan your GM are i900 and MS300:
Can I Drive With The Service StabiliTrak Light On?
You should only keep driving with the “Service Stabilitrak” light on if the warning message appears after skidding or a high-speed maneuver. As mentioned earlier, in such a scenario, the message is a sign that your system is working well.
The Service StabiliTrak message isn’t always a bad thing. For example, it’s okay if the message flashes when you’re driving on a slippery surface－It’s evidence that the system is working correctly.
However, you should be concerned if the warning message flashes when stationary or driving comfortably. In this case, it’s a sign something is wrong with the StabiliTrak System. Therefore, there is a chance it won’t initialize when you need it the most.
If it lights in any other circumstance, immediately consult an auto mechanic. Without proper functioning Stabilitrak, your vehicle may be more prone to loss of control during challenging driving situations.
Important note: NEVER keep driving if your Brake Warning Light accompanies the StabiliTrak Warning. This means your brakes system is also disabled. Those two are ingredients for disaster.
Service Stabilitrak vs Traction Control
While Stabilitrak and Traction Control System (TCS) share similar goals of enhancing vehicle stability, they are not the same.
The TCS primarily focuses on preventing wheel slip and loss of traction during acceleration, especially on slippery surfaces. It works by selectively applying the brakes or reducing engine power to the spinning wheels, allowing the power to transfer to the wheels with better traction.
On the other hand, Stabilitrak encompasses the functions of TCS but also incorporates additional features to assist in maintaining overall vehicle stability. It takes into account various factors such as steering input, lateral movement, and vehicle yaw, and can intervene in situations where the vehicle is at risk of skidding or spinning out.
However, the Service Traction Control message usually appears with the Service Stabilitrak light.
The video below explains more on this topic: