VATS Q&A

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Thread: VATS Q&A

  1. #1
    7.0 Liter LS7 V8 Premium Member
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    VATS Q&A

    A colleague of mine sent me this, this may answer any future troubleshooter issues anyone may have with the VATS anti-theft system on the GM's.
    What Is VATS And How Does It Work?
    VATS stands for Vehicle Anti Theft System. It works by sensing resistance in the 'chip' in your key. The 'chip' is really a resistor pellot. The VATS module controls the starter enable relay and the fuel disable parameter in the ECM. If the wrong resistance is detected, then the VATS module will NOT let the ECM power the fuel pump. It also will NOT let the starter turn.


    What Are The Resistance Values?
    Your resistor value will be one of these 15:

    1 - 402 Ohms
    2 - 523 Ohms
    3 - 681 Ohms
    4 - 887 Ohms
    5 - 1.13K Ohms
    6 - 1.47K Ohms
    7 - 1.87K Ohms
    8 - 2.37K Ohms
    9 - 3.01K Ohms
    10 - 3.74K Ohms
    11 - 4.75K Ohms
    12 - 6.04K Ohms
    13 - 7.50K Ohms
    14 - 9.31K Ohms
    15 - 11.8K Ohms


    The only way to tell which one is yours is to check it with a meter.


    What wires come out of the VATS module?
    Orange - 12 Volts 10 Amps - Coming from the VATS fuse on the fuse block.
    Black/White - Ground
    Black/Yellow - Starter Enable Relay Control - Relay is located behind LH kick panel. Provides ground to relay.
    Gray - Security Light - Provides ground to secuity light in instrument panel.
    Pink/Black - 12 Volts 10 Amps - Coming from the ECM fuse on the fuse block.
    Dark Blue - ECM Fuel Enable Control - Ground going to the ECM.
    Purple/White - Resistor Pellot - Ground going to the lock cylinder.
    White/Black - Resistor Pellot - X Ohms ground resistance going to the module coming from the lock cylinder.

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    GMI Contributor Premium Member nailhead425's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: VATS Q&A

    One for the files! Thank you Sir.
    Who is John Galt?
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    Re: VATS Q&A

    Quote<<
    Purple/White - Resistor Pellot - Ground going to the lock cylinder.
    White/Black - Resistor Pellot - X Ohms ground resistance going to the module coming from the lock cylinder
    Quote>>

    It would seem, for troubleshooting purpose, that placing a proper sized resistor between these 2 wires, and the vehicle would start correctly, would indicate there was a "problem" in the switch module and/or wiring in the column.

    I've had random "no start" issues in the past. Even a tow to the dealer was full of ???? after they did their diagnostics.

    I'm just thinking' out loud.

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    Re: VATS Q&A

    My shop techs will frequently bypass the cylinder and place a resistor in line back to bcm.
    The wires are usually a flat-like black , yellow or orange lead. Inside that lead is two tiny wires 30ga maybe? We cut that wire then place the resistor connecting the two ends on the car side.
    The techs in my shop use this proceedure when a customer doesn't want to pay for an ignition switch. I use this proceedure when installing remote starters also.

    But remember though, THIS METHOD DE-ACTIVATES IGNITION SECURITY.
    Inform your customers of the security loss.

    Never had issues with it because most customers like being able to buy standard keys later.

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