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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’m the original owner of a 2006 XLR, with approximately 37K miles. I recently come across a problem with the Top and Trunk that I will explain.

Recently, (2-05-12), I was going to drive with the top down and proceeded to open the trunk and placed the luggage barrier in the locked position. After closing the trunk, I started the engine, and proceeded to engage the hard top mechanism to place the top down. As I pressed the button, the barrier flap started to open, and the top attempted to open, but then the process stopped.

I attempted to reset the top mechanism by starting the process over again. I attempted to press the close button, and restarted the process. The top failed to open again with the same result. I noticed that there was a message on the dashboard indicating that the “TOP NOT SECURE”.

At this point, I turned off the engine, and proceeded to open the trunk to investigate the potential problem. I attempted to open the trunk in the normal process using the FOB and/or the sensor mechanism above the license plate. The trunk attempted to open, but the process failed and closed again. I tried this several times with the same result. I can hear the motors attempting to open the trunk.

I tried using the key to open the trunk (Done this before), but I could not turn the key to open the trunk manually. There appears to be some part of the mechanism that is jammed that will allow me to do this.

I have taken the car to the dealership and they are currently trying to diagnose the problem. I received a message from them indicating that they will need more time to figure the problem; it appears to be troublesome and will try to get some additional expertise to help diagnose this problem. This appears to be a very bad situation.

I read some posts on the forum describing some similar problems which describes the looking at the hydraulics in the trunk, but the trunk is not accessible. I have also read about S/W updates to make the Top operating sequence more efficient that may be part of the problem.

At this point, any diagnostics or fixes to resolving this issue needs to be done externally to fix this problem. I’m sure I’m not the only one to have this problem before, so I would appreciate any expertise and potential remedies that would assist.

Thanks,

SAM
 

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Hi Sam,

This sounds a lot like a sensor issue. You didn't mention if your dealership has a certified XLR tech. If not, I would recommend finding one.

A five-minute Tech 2 scan tool check will indicate the status of the latches, switches, and actual sensor position values which can be easily compared to the expected values. Knowing how the top is supposed to operate and looking at the indications on the Tech 2 should lead to a diagnosis within as little as fifteen minutes. The top is actually pretty easy to troubleshoot if you have the right tools. This is why I asked about the availability of a certified XLR tech.

When the expected values are out of whack, the sequence will stop, to avoid causing damage to components that may be in the wrong position.

Keep us posted.

CC :seeya
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi CC,

Thanks for your quick response and initial diagnosis of the problem; I'm new to this forum, so can you please explain what a "Tech 2 Scan tool" check is. When I spoke with the service rep at the dealership, he did not mention this type of diagnosis.

Also, I'm not sure if the dealership has an XLR Certified Tech, but I will definetly ask them. If they do not have one, would a certified tech come to the dealership to diagnose the problem or would I have to go to a dealership that has one?

and yes, I will definetly keep the forum posted on the diagnosis and solution to this problem. I keep my Car in mint condition and do everything posible to keep it top shape.

I hope that the eventual diagnosis and solution to this problem will help other XLR owners solve similar problems and also help prevent this issues with their cars.

SAM
 

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Hi back,

A Tech 2 (you can use Google to see what one looks like) is a hand-held GM diagnostic tool that dealerships use to peer into the inner working of vehicles. On the XLR, the diagnostic port is located at the base of the steering wheel. The Tech 2 is being replaced by a newer system that uses a laptop. Both are able to store diagnostic routines for all later GM models.

The Tech 2 differs from the kind of scan tool available at auto supply stores which can read powertrain codes. These are one-way communication devices. The Tech 2 is bi-directional and can reset parameters, enter VIN codes to install new entertainment systems, etc.

Press the Door Open switch on the driver's side, and the Tech 2 will display it's status from Inactive to Active. Multiply that by a hundred, and you can readily get a handle on how capable the Tech 2 is. In the shop manuals, the Tech 2 is used in the majority of troubleshooting and alignment procedures.

New for the XLR was the ability to perform a complete, one-button-press diagnostic routine. When the full-blown diagnostic scan starts, each module (there are 23) responds to the Tech 2, announcing it's presence. If any modules contain an error code, a number corresponding to how many codes were affecting the module are displayed. Afterwards, you can go to each module, look at the code, and re-run a specific scan if necessary, clear old codes and re-scan the module again to verify it's got issues. The tool is pricey though -about $1200-2000, so it isn't a tool you want unless you plan to keep the car a long time and enjoy working on vehicles.

I got tired of taking my car in for little issues that I was unable to troubleshoot on my own --like the Folding Top for instance, so I sprung for one. I have two Cadillacs, but the XLR is the only one that has ever had issues requiring a Tech 2. It's nice to have the ability to scan my neighbor's cars.

Anytime you take your XLR to a dealership, (this is for you new people) ask if they have a certified XLR tech. This car has special classes for it's unique systems, and most Cadillac dealerships have at least one. If your dealer doesn't have one, you'll be paying for their education, (--on your car, no less!) so I highly recommend saving yourself a lot of heartache and only let certified techs work on your vehicle. Techs at any dealership can call for tech support, but I'd rather have a tech spend my labor charges in the bay than on the phone.


I hope this answers your questions.

CC :seeya
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
CC,

Thankyou for the education on the Tech 2 device; I will be contacting the dealership tomorrow with regards to the information you provided, as well as possible solutions. I agree, this requires an expert.

SAM
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Just an Update from the Dealership:

We received your fax, I would like to thank you for the research that you have provided to us on your vehicle. I have personally been involved in your vehicle in trying to open the trunk. The latch is seized some way causing the trunk not to release, the actuator for the trunk is mounted in the bumper that we need to gain access to. We have gained access to the emergence pull handle in the trunk through the small access above the rear seats. The emergence pull handle will not release the actuator to the latch, also in combination have tried the key in the bumper and used the remote trunk release none will release the trunk as you no. The technician what is working on your vehicle is General Motors certified and is very qualified to work on your vehicle. The problem that we are having on your vehicle is to gain access to the latch and actuator and that is only accessible behind the bumper, and from the trunk that can’t get access to. We have made several calls to General Motors Technical Assistance with the concern, we are waiting for a call back from them to see if there is any other way to gain access. All of the attempts that we

have tried have failed, we are trying to open the trunk without causing any damage to the trunk lid, bumper or to the convertible top system.

We are aware of the diagnoses, the problem is getting to the latch and actuator without causing and damage to the exterior body panels.

When trying to open with the remote you can see the amount of pressure been applied to the trunk, it is trying to open but the latch and actuator are bound together and will not allow the trunk to release. This repair is not as easy as just getting the Tech 2 and pulling up codes

it has to do with getting access to these components to release the hatch without causing major damage. Will try to find out from Technical Assistance as soon as I can, and will let you know the outcome as soon as possible and keep you updated on your vehicle.

I provided the following Suggestions, If any body has any other ideas, would entertain all options:

Steve,

Thank you for the update on XLR; I read quite a few similar problems on the XLR forums, and I thought I might pass
this along to see of any of these ideas are options.

1) Remove the Battery and let the system reset; Some Threads indicated this solved the problem.

2) Perform a S/W upgrade to allow the mechanism to reset (Assuming the H/W is compatible); some threads indicated that S/W upgraded may improve how the mechanism and timing on how the systems unravels.

3) From an Engineering perspective, the message "TOP NOT SECURE" indicates that the TOP is open to a certain degree which would mean this would prevent the trunk from opening. I read in one of the threads that they were able to fool the system that would allow to fully disengage the system. They indicated there is a tool that can be used to fake the system that the system is latched.

Just a few thoughts to consider
 

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Sam:

It is important to remember that the key in the bumper is a manual process and is intended to release the trunk lock when all electrical components are dead. It is turned to the right very carefully and the trunk locking claw should release and allow the trunk to raise very slightly. Then you will need to push it open completely.

I would think that if that failed possibly the combination of the manual cable next to the drivers seat AND the key at the same time may produce enough leverage to release it.

Do you know if they tried to use the manual trunk opening lever located outside the trunk and above the license frame? You need to have the FOB close by.

Regarding the battery reset process, all they have to do is to remove the negative cable to the battery for a few minutes and then reconnect it for the system recycle to work.

I would however try the manual access processes while the battery is disconnected in case the system is stuck trying the open cycle.

Regards

Jerry



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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
XLR 2006 - TOP and Trunk will not Open

Thanks Jerry,

Received a call from the Dealership indicating that they want me come discuss the issue with them; It appears that they did not solve the problem and/or want to break into the Car to solve the problem.

This is not an option for me; I can't believe GM would build a Car that cannot be fixed in a normal manner.

If I don't get a satisfactory answer; I will take the car to another dealership, but also call Corporate head quarters as well.

If there is a design flaw with the Car; I believe corporate should be involved with this problem.

Again, thanks for your input, and I will keep the forum posted on the status.

SAM :banghead
 

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Sam,

Sorry to hear about the progress (or lack thereof) made thus far. The Tech 2 won't open the trunk, only give the status of the rear latch mechanism.
(Which in this case appears mechanically bound.)

Your dealer sounds like one I dealt with when I first moved here. The Service Manager assured me all of their techs were GM-certified. (That answer was the minimum I wanted to hear.) When pressed for XLR credentials, he admitted they didn't have a Certified XLR tech and I continued my search. There is a specific XLR certification for techs that have taken a special GM course. Not every dealership has one.

In your case, it's a formality. If the latch (Rear Compartment Pull-down Actuator) is jammed, there is no way to physically access it without risking damage, and any tech will be hard-pressed to find a quick solution to the problem your car presents.

To clarify somewhat. . . There is no lever above the rear license plate -it's a momentary switch -like the one adjacent to the base of the steering column. There are only five (normal) ways to open the trunk lid: Pressing the fob switch, the rear license plate switch, the switch near the steering wheel, the Top Control switch, and two mechanical methods -the pull switch from inside the trunk, and the release using the key switch in the bumper.

As your dealership already knows, this is what's called a catastophic single-point failure. One inaccessible component fails, and non-destructive solutions aren't readlily available. This is why they're in contact with GM Tech Assistance. Yours is a rare failure and it's going to take some serious brainstorming time to figure out a way to induce the latch to release. If the solenoid is firing and it's still stuck, it's probably a mechanical jam. Jiggling the the release cables for an extended period may induce it to move.

Where I work, when a rare, seemingly impossible, hard-to-fix scenario happens, I'm always amazed at how creative folks can be --like using a borescope and a high pressure air line to move things in out-of-the way places, or inflatable "pillows" to apply mechanical pressure.

--Being a car, space is always tight and you obviously want to keep mechanical and cosmetic damage to an absolute minimum. I'm sure they've pulled the rear/center console between the seats to gain limited access to the trunk. There isn't much to work with. And yes, design limitations cannot take every failure situation into account --like making the scews that secure the rear decklid accessible from between the seats. The mechanical cables are supposed to work when power is lost. 99% of the time. . .

I'm sure I'm not the only one following this thread to see how they are able to fix it without resorting to cutting the rear decklid apart. Kind of makes me want to lubricate my car's release latch . . .

Good luck and hang in there!

CC :grouphug
 

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Sam:

CC is the undisputed tech expert here and as he mentioned I really don't recall ever reading about a issue like this since I have been on the site. So your issue is very rare indeed.

IF I WERE YOU-what I would want to know is;
1. Whether they did disconnect the battery and allow a reset to occur.
2. Whether they tried the manual entry processes with the battery disconnected.

If you give up on these guys and go to another dealer these are things you can try yourself BEFORE anyone tries to take a touch out and cut a hole in your car.

THERE ARE ENGINEERS THAT ARE XLR KNOWLEDGEABLE THAT STILL WORK FOR CADILLAC so ask to get them involved.

You might PM CC and take a ride to his dealer to see if they can resolve the issue.

Very Best Wishes

Jerry



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XLR-SAM,

Please keep us posted on any information from the dealership. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us directly.

Thank you,
Caron, Cadillac Customer Service
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
To All,

Just a an update on the Situation; I stopped by the Dealership to discuss the problem encountered; They managed to remove middle storage box to gain access to the rear.

They used a Borescope to view in the back; they lowered the barrier and moved out the items (umbrella and window visor) to view the rear. They indicated that there must be something jamming the manual release lever since they see it move, but still cannot open the trunk manually. They indicated to me that the rear motors are behind the plate, so they are having difficult time understanding how the mechanism is working.

I did ask if they have an XLR technical expert, and the answer is no. They indicated thay they rarely see these Vehicles at their dealership, and their Mechanics don't have that level of experience working on this type of problem.

1) They indicated they did follow the suggestion provided and disconnected the Battery
to allow a reset.
2) THey did disconnect the Battery and tried to gain manual entry.

I did mention to them that I did notice that the display indicated "TOP NOT SECURE" when i attempted to Open/Close the top after a few failures. They mentioned to me that they attached the "TECH 2" device, and indicated that the message was cleared from the system. Without trying this myself, I'm not sure if this would show up again.

They also mentioned that in order to understand how the mechanism works, they need another Car so that they can compare how the release works.

Based on my conversation with them today; they just don't have the experience to understand the mechanics of the top and mechanism to fully diagnose the problem.

The Service Manager is trying his best, but he see's my frustration with regards to not being able to solve this problem. I mentioned that I will call Corporate to disucss this situation from an owner perspective.

The XLR was supposed to be GM/Cadillac's flagship Car; If there is a design defect that was not anticipated during the Engineering of the Top and Trunk; I believe it is in the best interest that GM knows of the problem and has their Engineers work this problem so that it is solved in future designs of the car.

I'm a S/W Engineer by trait, so when I see a problem like that is (Mechnical/SW), I work
to resolve the problem so that it does not occur again. That is how we qualify equipment before it goes out to the field.

I will keep the forum posted on the status, but for now, I will try to contact another XLR owner to see if they can bring their car to the dealership so that they can see how the mechanism is working.

Any volunteer's out there?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks Jerry,

CC, can you please reply to these thread and provide the name of the dealership as well as Contact number of the Service Manager at your dealserhip.

Thanks,

SAM
 

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It's sort of a big state (--Unless you live in Alaska or Texas). XLR Sam is near LA. I'm outside of Sacramento, so I doubt he wants to drive his car seven hours up here for a repair. There have to be loads of Cadillac dealers in LA and at least one certified XLR tech in the area.

CC
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
It's sort of a big state (--Unless you live in Alaska or Texas). XLR Sam is near LA. I'm outside of Sacramento, so I doubt he wants to drive his car seven hours up here for a repair. There have to be loads of Cadillac dealers in LA and at least one certified XLR tech in the area.

CC
CC,

Thanks for you input once again; If you have time, can you contact your dealership to see if they know of one in the So Cal area (San Bernardino preferably) that has an XLR Tech. I appreciate all your insight and input to date. I'll perform some cold calling, but if there is a way to find out if a dealearship is certified with such a mechanic, that would be a good help.
 

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CC,

Thanks for you input once again; If you have time, can you contact your dealership to see if they know of one in the So Cal area (San Bernardino preferably) that has an XLR Tech. I appreciate all your insight and input to date. I'll perform some cold calling, but if there is a way to find out if a dealearship is certified with such a mechanic, that would be a good help.
My Service Manager said he doesn't have a roster of California-based XLR techs and recommended contacting the local Service Managers in your area.

CC
 

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SAM:

CC has a very good idea that I would like to modify a little;

Call Cadillac Customer Service open a formal problem report and upward manage your problem within Cadillac. Let them tell you the best place to take your car and get it fixed. Also suggest they fly someone in that knows what needs to be done befor some serious damage is done.

BTW did you by the car from a private party or a Cadillac Dealer? If it was a dealer get them involved at the owner General Manager level.

I have reposted my How To Get Into The Xlr With No Battery or Power Document in the TECHNICAL SECTION > Top and Trunk Operation. It's a sticky at the top of the topic.

We're here to help.

Best Wishes

Jerry



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