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2000 deville rear suspension

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Hello, and great forum for a new Caddy owner. :-)

I recently purchased my first Caddy, a 2000 base Deville. It's a very clean car with 85k miles. The only issue I noticed with the car is very squeaky rear shocks and a bit of a clunk from the rear over quick bumps. No problem I thought, install some new shocks and it's good to go. Not so easy though as I found that the current shocks are coil-overs and the air level system had been disabled (by removing the relay as far as I can tell). I contacted the previous owner he said that he had the coil over shocks put on, but was unsure what was done other than that. I did locate the air lines, tucked into the frame, and they seem intact

My first thought was to get the air system working, but I am unsure of how to test it out. I pulled the relay for trunk release and installed it into the slot for the level control (the relay is not keyed and fits both ways so I tried it both. level maxi fuse tests good btw), but with the key on and while standing on the rear bumper i didn't hear it running, so at this point I'm not sure if the compressor runs or not. so I have some questions I'm hoping to get some help with.

1: Could somebody who knows this system give me some direction on how to tell if the air compressor actually works? Can it be hotwired by jumping the switch section of the relay?

2: Which way does the relay go into the rear fuse panel? Working with electronics for a living I know that the switch section and the coil section are not interchangeable.

3: can the compressor assy be removed for service without removing the passenger side muffler?

4: Are their any other soft parts that should be changed out when replacing the shocks?

My tentative plan at this point is to get rid of the coil-over shocks and put on a set of Gabriel HiJackers. I figured that I could manually fill them to a moderate level and then when I have the time (and possibly funding if other components are bad) at a later time. Does this seem a logical plan?

Thanks a lot for any insight.


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I do not know too much about what you are undertaking, however, I bought an '04 base DeVille late last year with 22,k. I bought it solely for the low mileage. Both rear shocks appeared to be original, and were leaking fluid. I looked up replacement shocks at Rock Auto. I believe OEM's were $164.00 each. I opted to buy Gabriel HiJackers, as you suggest, for ~$70 with a coupon at Advance Auto. The swap was an easy one. In reply to #4 above, I purchased the top rubber mounts just in case. Mine turned out to be fine, so I returned the pair. I have been happy with my choice, and now am looking for new front shocks to get rid of the bounce at high speed. Good luck, and let us know!


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Ok. Hope this helps.

If it had the original shocks there would be electrical plugs to them for the variable suspension. If the shocks are not hooked up it may disable the compressor.

Also the compressor should be removable without removing the muffler. I will have to look it up because it usually only comes out one way


Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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If you unplug the shocks or one of the ride height sensors you will get an OBD code because the PZM or RSS module will be able to tell that the sensor isn't right. That will probably disable the ride height compressor in some sense. The computers have a backup mode when things aren't right that isn't necessarily shutting down a subsystem completely. In the case of the ride height control, you need about 7 psi in it for an unloaded car to ride level. If a ride height sensor is disconnected, the compressor may still come on for a second or two when you turn the key on but nothing more.

I'm not sure whether a loose or disconnected connector on the electronic shocks or struts will have any effect on the ride height control.

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