Servicing the Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia & Saturn Outlook

All four use the GM Z-Keyway system and the “Circle Plus” transponder system. All can be programmed with the standard GM on-board programming procedure, which takes 30 minutes.


All four of these vehicles share the same platform, door construction, steering column, and the same lock system. Three were introduced in the 2007 model year, with the Chevrolet Traverse introduced for the 2009 model year. All four use the GM Z-Keyway system and the “Circle Plus” transponder...


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Reassembling the cylinder is essentially the reverse of the disassembly. Make sure that the spring clip is properly seated in the grooves of the handle bracket before you begin. With the lock out of the housing, the spring clip is easily visible through the opening in the door handle. Photo 30 shows the lower portion of the spring clip at the bottom of the lock opening. Once the lock is back in place, replace the armored cover and reattach the door panel.

Ignition Lock Removal


The steering column used on these vehicles is the same basic column that is used on the new Camaro and all of the other new vehicles equipped with the new GM “Flip Key” system. The ignition lock (Photo 31) used on the Outlook and its sister vehicles is interchangeable with the Flip Key ignition on the outside, but milled and bitted for the Z-Keyway system. These locks use an active retainer and must be turned to the “ON” position before they can be removed. This particular vehicle was also missing the rubber pad that is normally located below the ignition lock.


The lower shroud on the steering column is split into two pieces, but the two pieces must be removed from the column at the same time because they interlock. There are two bolts in each side of the shroud and the tilt lever must be flipped to the down position before the shroud can be removed.


After removing all four bolts, and flipping the tilt lever down, the left side of the lower shroud can be removed. You will have to slide it down the surprisingly long tilt lever before you can remove it completely.


The right hand side of the lower shroud must be pulled over the face of the lock and disengaged from a tab on the upper shroud. Note the rectangular opening in the top of the shroud that is usually hidden behind the steering wheel (photo 34). A similar opening is on the left side. To disengage both sides you must work a small tool between the shroud and the wheel to release the mounting tab.


After the lower shroud has been removed, the upper portion can be lifted free of the column. Note in photo 35 the two tabs that interlock with the lower portions of the shroud as well as the hooks that grip the upper edges of the lower shroud components.


With the shroud removed, you have complete access to the ignition lock and Theft Deterrent Module (TDM). It’s not necessary to remove the TDM to remove the ignition lock, but if you are dealing with a damaged or vandalized lock and have to do any drilling, I would recommend removing it to eliminate the possibility of damaging it. The poke-hole to release the ignition lock is virtually impossible to see because it is located directly behind the brace above the lock in photo 36.


The TDM snaps onto the lock housing and after the shroud has been removed, it can be pulled over the face of the lock with a little gentle prying. Use care any time you work with a TDM, because the very fine copper windings that form the antenna ring can be damaged relatively easily, and then the TDM will have to be replaced. Replacing the TDM will require a diagnostic tool in order to program the vehicle to accept the new TDM.


Since I couldn’t find the poke-hole on the Outlook, Photos 38 and 39 were taken of a 2010 Camaro, which uses the same steering column. But, they are equipped with the high security side-milled lock system. The tip of the Shrum tool shown here is going into the poke-hole to depress the active retainer. The retainer aligns with the poke-hole only when the lock has been turned to the “ON” position. I was able to locate the poke-hole on this one because I had the vehicle for about a week. I eventually located the poke-hole by feel as I was trying to determine the best way to remove the entire lock assembly from the column. You can see the poke-hole if you place a mirror above the lock assembly. I had a replacement lock in my hand and knew from that approximately where to look.


Photo 39 shows the lock housing without the lock in place and the tip of the Shrum tool sticking into the housing through the poke-hole. The small black circular piece at the end of the lock chamber is a part of the key buzzer switch.


Whenever I have problems trying to locate a poke-hole, I try to look at a replacement lock for help. If I do not have a lock, then I try to locate a photo of the lock. The sites that I go to first are Strattec (http://aftermarket.strattec.com) or ASP (www.carlocks.com/catalog.htm) if I’m working on an import vehicle.

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