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Hello all. My 96 Deville throws the RS0038 code. for the rear ELC. I cannot find the description for the code at this time but I know it has something to do with the compressor.

I have run into this cde many times before on other Cadillacs and usually the ELC fuse in the trunk pops and the compressor does not operate. But this one is not happening like that.

here is what I have for info.

Car rides fine

No other codes present

Have never gotten a service ride control message

Air compressor works fine and exhausts fine

rear suspension does not change when vehicle sits for extended period of time.

Not quite sure why this code is occuring as suspension seems to be working properly.

Only one time I had about 700 lbs in back seat and rear suspension rode low. definately lower than normal. I use the spokes of my rims as reference of ride height. Normal ride height I can see the holes in the spokes at the top of the rims at the wheelwell. Which is all the time. On the ride where it rode low the rear end all you could see was half of the center cap. Yes thats very low. but still rode great. and got decent mileage.

I would appreciate any insight on this topic. I plan to purchase a spare compressor to rebuild and install someday. But at this time I am not too worried about the problem. the code has been coming up for awhile and the only reason why I know its there is because I run the codes once in awhile and it is the only code.

Whatever is causing this code only seems to be affected by heavy load in the rear end. other than that it rides perfectly normal.

thanks all

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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Ok to update this. I found a very nice 98 Deville presidential in my local yard today. The compressor was completely intact and came right off.

The vent line that goes from the pump side was intact to the orifice in the body. But the hose was rotted and broke.

I need to know where the other hose goes though if anyone knows. It is the one on the motor housing. Where does that one go. It is in the first pic.

Thanks I plan to do the job in the morning

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GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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well today did not go well. replacement compressor is shot. I dont know how to test the exhaust valve. maybe I could join the parts to make one good one. I reinstalled my original setup. I might just leave it alone

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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Well tonight I disassembled the bad unit

The pump is fine, the motor is shot, nasty burnt smell, and the exhaust valve is shot. Looks like an extremely common problem on all of them. It oxidizes and plugs the ports shut. which is exactly what is wrong with mine.

Thank god mine still pumps but it wont build with load and the exhaust valve wont click. wish I had my camera so I could share the pictures of the disassembled unit. It would make alot more sense.

I guess I will have to keep an eye out for another valve.

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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  • 8 months later...

To update this still looking for a rebuilt or good used compressor.

All I really need is the exhaust valve portion but that seems easier said than done

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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  • 2 weeks later...

I finally have some great news and some very expected not so great news.

I finally found a used compressor unit. I knew that the Catera unit was similair and found one on ebay that was southern and mint. It cost me 90.00 and just came in yesterday.

Note the Catera unit is almost identical other than the dryer unit. The Catera compressor is located in the front by the bumper and has 1 single air line that runs to the rear and splits.

The Deville compressor is right by the rear suspension and has both lines coming out of the dryer unit.

Other than that the compressor, pump, Unit mounted mounts, motor, and plug are all the same.

The vehicle side bracket is different but is not needed because I was able to reuse my original.

Anyway I did the job tonight and it went very well. I pulled my unit out and found the obvious. I pulled the dryer off the pump and it was plugged solid with white dust(aluminum corrosion I assume)

So this tells me All the time I have had this car the compressor has been useless. Even though it worked it wasnt even getting out of the dryer, or even more likely out of the pump itself.

Now for those that dont know, one of the causes of the RS0038 code is when the exhaust solenoid corrodes itself shut and just wont work anymore. When I pulled the dryer off it was plugged solid and was the pump housing. I had to clean out my old dryer and once I knew it was clear I installed it on the replacement unit.

Total job took me 1 hour and it works perfect now. No code. Definately raises and lowers now. On ride home rear suspension definately took bumps better.

The not so great news. Which I never heard before but I knew to expect it.

Both shocks are leaking now.

I heard them once I shut the car off after my trip. It is faint but can be heard on both sides.

I have a few options now but I wonder if it is ok to run with the leaking struts for now without damaging the work I have just done.

I can either spend 700.00 for the monroe replacement RSS shocks

Leave it alone.

Try to find good used shocks(likely impossible due to rust and removal problems).

Chances are I am going to suck it up and spend the 700 and buy new. I love this car. I have 600 miles to hit 200000 miles and still love it. What more can I say.

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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S038 Electronic Level Control Exhaust Valve Short to Ground/Open
This is an OBD I code, which was retained by some 1996 models. Some PZM/RSS modules for 1996 and all later models will throw the equivalent C1737 or C1738 codes. You really nailed that problem and its cause.

You can treat the air bags on the rear shocks like a leaky inner tube and apply an aftermarket compound from a bicycle shop to the cracks in the rubber to seal the cracks. The pressure in them is normally about 7 psi according to something I read so this isn't like tire pressure. If you spray water on them and spot just a few spots, you might be able to do the trick with a bicycle inner tube patch or two. If you can find a way to get it to hold 10 psi to 15 psi, and get it to hold for a few months while you plan what to do, then there you are and there you are.

I just checked Rock Auto. They sell Monroes that are OEM quality for $107 each without RSS (electrically controlled damping) (Monroe part number 4046), $355 each with RSS (Monroe part number 4018). I would be sure that this was the right part for your car before buying, so I suggest checking the Monroe web site to make sure.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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Thanks. The monroe ones are the ones I was looking at. I want to maintain the factory setup.

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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Wow. I must say The ride is even better now. Everything is working properly and the rear takes bumps much better now.

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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And, I love your cat in the background in post #2.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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Hard to tell what they're thinking with a cat, but she looks very healthy and happy, and it seems from the photos that she is just hanging out with you while you're working.

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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