How to Reset Service StabiliTrak Light?

The StabiliTrak system is a standard feature of most modern vehicles including GMC and Chevy that ensure better control of the vehicle in various terrains. However, it can trigger the service stabilitrak light due to software issues or during driving at high speed which you can be turned off by resetting.

So, how to reset service StabiliTrak light? Turn off the car, rotate the steering wheel all the way clockwise and counterclockwise, and then wait around 15 seconds before turning on the vehicle. The process varies depending on the car’s make and model. It won’t help you if the car shows the warning light due to any serious issue like a fault in the ABS, wheel speed sensor, or alternator.

What Does Service StabiliTrak Light Mean?

The service StabiliTrak light is different from the Stabilitrak dash light. This warning light indicates that the traction system is turned off that you can activate when required. If so, the service stabilitrak light isn’t concerning and you can keep driving with this light. However, the service stabilitrak light also indicates the potential damage to the car’s components that need attention.

The exact reason for this issue varies and ranges from steering problems to sensor malfunction. In this case, you should address the underlying reason as internal damage or malfunctioning StabiliTrak system can reduce the car’s stability.

It can also make it difficult to control the vehicle and make driving risky. So, bring the car to a licensed auto repair shop and let the mechanic diagnose the issue using an OBD2 scanner.

When should you reset the Service StabiliTrak Light?

Resetting is a quick and simple solution to disappear the service stabilitrak light. However, sometimes, it isn’t an effective solution and there is a situation when you shouldn’t reset this StabiliTrak light.

When should you reset the Service StabiliTrak Light

For example, if your car shows other massage or lights on DIC (Driver Information Center) along with the StabiliTrak light, you shouldn’t reset it using the StabiliTrak on/off button. You should reset the StabiliTrak light only if it is activated due to computer failure or software issues.

The reason is that if your car shows stabilitrak massage due to electrical or mechanical issues, resetting will only disappear the light for a while. The actual problem will still exist and you’ll be at risk while driving.

How to Reset Service StabiliTrak Light?

The process of resetting the stabilitrak light varies depending on the car’s make and model and you can reset the system with or without using any tool. Below are some standard methods to reset the service stabilitrak light.

1. Method One  

Turn your car’s steering wheel clockwise from 9 o’clock to 3 o’clock. If the message disappeared, your vehicle doesn’t need servicing. If the message doesn’t disappear, turn off the vehicle and wait for around 15 seconds.

Then turn on the car to reset the system. If the massage stills show on the Driver Information Center (DIC), take your vehicle to a service center.

2. Method Two

Turn off the ignition and remove the key. Detach the battery’s negative terminal and wait around 5 minutes. Then reconnect the terminal and turn on the engine. this should refresh your car’s StabiliTrak system and disappear the warning light.

3. Method Three

If you have access to the OBD scanner, use it to find out and reset the error codes that trigger the service stabilitrak light.

To do this, switch off the ignition and find out the diagnostic port of your vehicle which is usually found under the dashboard. Connect the OBD scanner and put its key in the On position.

The scanner should detect your car’s make and model and start diagnosing the error codes. Once done, reset the error codes. However, you may need to fix some internal problems in the car to clear all the error codes. After resetting, disconnect the tool and wait around 30 seconds before turning on the engine.

What Causes StabiliTrak Light to Come On?

A car’s StabiliTrak depends on several systems including traction control, brake system, and steering position sensor to work on. So if any of that system malfunctions, the StabiliTrak will go offline.

What Causes StabiliTrak Light to Come On

Loss of ABS Function

Both the ABS and Stabilitrak are controlled by one module. So a faulty ABS can affect your StabiliTrak system. In the worse case, the StabiliTrak will fail as it depends on the braking system. Hence your car can activate both the ABS warning light and service StabiliTrak light.

Damaged Wheel Speed Sensor

The StabiliTrak depend on plenty of sensor including the wheel speed sensor to receive signals and keep functioning. So if a bad wheel speed sensor sent incorrect data, the StabiliTrak can malfunction and turn on the warning light.

Damaged Wheel Speed Sensor

Stability Control Module Problem

This system monitors a vehicle and ensures stability during driving. The control module also manages the operation of the stabilitrak and its internal failure or software problem can activate the service stabilitrak light.

Stability Control Module Problem

Alternator Failure

An alternator is a vital part that helps supply power to the electrical system of a vehicle including the StabiliTrak. If the alternator becomes weak or gets damaged, the StabiliTrak won’t get enough power to function properly which can trigger the warning light. If so, it can introduce other electric issues as well.

Alternator Failure

Damaged Controller

A controller receives data from the sensors of a vehicle and helps get complete control of the car. If the controller gets damaged, it’ll activate the service stabilitrak light and you’ll struggle to control the vehicle

Signs of Service StabiliTrak Light Problems

Below are some symptoms that indicate that there might be a problem with StabiliTrak:

Signs of Service StabiliTrak Light Problems

Faulty Steering

If you notice that the car’s wheel moving without pushing the accelerator, it’s a clear sign of erratic steering. If your car’s wheel moves irregularly when trying to steer, it could be an issue with the control unit.

Faulty Steering

Inconsistent Acceleration

After pressing the accelerator, if the car accelerates slowly than you desired, check the StabiliTrak system. Your vehicle may also activate the limp home mode due to sensing the problem. If the engine turns on but the wheel doesn’t move, the StabiliTrak may break down and need repair.

Unusual Sounds

If there is any issue with the StabiliTrak system, your vehicle may make odd noises like grinding or rubbing. Your car may also make whirring sounds due to the failure of the StabiliTrak. if so, inspect your car with an expert mechanic.

Can you drive with Service StabiliTrak Light On?

You can drive with a service stabilitrak light as long as you can adjust this function or don’t experience any issues while driving. Many drivers turn the StabiliTrak system off to save the vehicle power during long trips. But if the service stabilitrak light turn on when you specifically didn’t deactivate the system, you shouldn’t keep driving.

Can you drive with Service StabiliTrak Light On

Since this system maintains the stability and traction of your vehicle on the road, you can lose control of the vehicle if decide to drive with a faulty StabiliTrak system. Stabilitrak also helps keep the car straight particularly when the car tends to move in a zigzag motion. It engages brakes automatically when the car’s steer responds in the opposite direction than you apply.

This way, the StabiliTrak system prevents causing an accident. So an activated service StabiliTrak light means you won’t get those help in an emergency. Though you can drive with this warning light, it’ll be better to diagnose the car and fix the problem to make driving safer.

Cost of Fixing the Service StabiliTrak Issue

Stabilitrak repair cost varies depending on the underlying issue that triggers the service Stabilitrak issue and the method you apply. For example, if you can disappear the warning light by simply setting the system, it won’t cost. However, if you need to buy an OBD scanner to reset the StabiliTrak system, it may cost anywhere from $30 to $500.

If the resetting process doesn’t work and need to bring the car to the mechanic, fixing the servicing stabilitrak issue can be a bit costlier. For instance, a mechanic can charge between $320 and $1,000 to repair or replace a faulty ABS control module while fixing a wheel speed sensor can cost between $213 and $263.

However, repairing stability control modules or faulty controllers is relatively cheaper as this cost around $111 to $125 and $106 to $129 respectively. Replacing an alternator in a car can cost between $350−$900 depending on the vehicle.


Can StabiliTrak cause the check engine light to come on?

All the sensors and EBCM that control the StabiliTrak system has individual error code. So if there is any issue with that system, the check engine light can turn on. In this case, you can use an OBD reader to find out and fix the fault code to deactivate the check engine light and StabiliTrak warning light.

Will service StabiliTrak light cause reduced engine power?

The StabiliTrak warning light is directly related to the car’s traction control system. When the car’s computer finds any problem with the StabiliTrak system, it put the vehicle into reduced power mode. This way, the vehicle tries to prevent further damage and keep the driver safe.

Why won’t my StabiliTrak light turn off?

The StabiliTrak light of your car might not turn off if the fuse of the traction control system blows out. The problem with the traction control sensors may also keep the StabiliTrak light on. So it requires deep diagnoses.

Final Words

Knowing how to reset service StabiliTrak light can be a helpful skill to save some energy on snowy or moody roads. It can also save some bucks if the warning light comes on due to a software issue.

However, if your car’s internal problem triggers this error message, trying to reset the system won’t be a good idea. So whenever you notice an active service stabilitrak light, monitor your car carefully. If you experience it’s difficult to control the vehicle, bring it to a service center immediately. 

My name is Henry Roberts and I am an experienced car mechanic with over 15 years of expertise in the automotive industry. I am currently running a Auto Repair Shop in Denver, Colorado. I have been servicing and repairing vehicles at my shop, where i have built a solid reputation for my skill and knowledge. I am passionate about sharing my automotive knowledge through blogging and my goal is to provide accurate and helpful information to car owners to keep their vehicles in perfect condition.

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