Glow Plug Monitor Fault Bank 2: What the P1396 Code Means for Your Chevy

Glow Plug Monitor Fault Bank 2: What the P1396 Code Means for Your Chevy

Has your Chevrolet’s check engine light recently illuminated, revealing the mysterious P1396 code? Don’t worry – you’re not alone. This diagnostic trouble code (DTC) is more common than you might think, and understanding its implications is crucial for maintaining your vehicle’s performance and efficiency.

What is the Chevrolet P1396 Code?

The P1396 code for Chevrolet vehicles typically stands for “Glow Plug Monitor Fault Bank 2”. This code is specific to diesel engines and indicates that the engine control module (ECM) has detected an issue with the glow plug system on the second bank of cylinders.

Glow plugs are essential components in diesel engines, helping to preheat the combustion chamber for easier starting in cold conditions. When the P1396 code appears, it suggests that one or more glow plugs in bank 2 are not functioning correctly or that there’s an issue with the glow plug control module.

Top 20 Chevrolet Vehicles Commonly Affected by P1396

While this code can appear in various Chevrolet diesel models, here are 20 vehicles that frequently experience this issue:

  • Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD
  • Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
  • Chevrolet Colorado (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Express (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Cruze (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Equinox (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Tahoe (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Suburban (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Captiva (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet TrailBlazer (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Malibu (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Orlando (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Aveo (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Niva (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet S10 (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Spin (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Cobalt (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Sail (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Enjoy (diesel variant)
  • Chevrolet Beat (diesel variant)

Implications on Vehicle Performance and Emissions

The P1396 code can have several negative impacts on your Chevrolet:

  • Difficulty starting the engine, especially in cold weather
  • Reduced engine performance and power
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Increased emissions
  • Engine misfires or rough idling
  • Potential damage to other engine components if left unaddressed

These issues not only affect your driving experience but can also lead to failed emissions tests and decreased overall vehicle efficiency.

Diagnosing and Fixing P1396

Here’s a comprehensive guide to diagnosing and fixing the P1396 code:

Symptoms to look out for:

  • Illuminated check engine light
  • Hard starting, especially in cold weather
  • Reduced engine power
  • Poor fuel economy
  • Engine misfires or runs rough
  • Excessive exhaust smoke

Diagnostic steps:

  1. Use an OBD-II scanner to confirm the P1396 code and check for any additional codes
  2. Visually inspect the glow plugs and their wiring for damage or loose connections
  3. Check the resistance of each glow plug using a multimeter
  4. Inspect the glow plug control module for signs of damage or corrosion
  5. Examine the engine wiring harness for any damage or exposed wires
  6. Check the battery voltage to ensure it’s sufficient for proper glow plug operation

Potential fixes:

  • Replace faulty glow plugs
  • Repair or replace damaged wiring or connectors
  • Replace a faulty glow plug control module
  • Clean corroded electrical connections
  • In some cases, update the ECM software

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is it safe to drive with the P1396 code?
A: While your vehicle may still run, it’s not recommended to drive for extended periods with this code. The engine may be harder to start, especially in cold weather, and could suffer damage over time.

Q: How much does it cost to fix a P1396 code?
A: Costs can vary depending on the root cause and your specific Chevrolet model. Replacing glow plugs typically costs between $200-$500, while more complex issues involving the control module or wiring can range from $500 to $1000 or more.

Q: How can I prevent the P1396 code from occurring?
A: Regular maintenance is key. Keep up with your vehicle’s recommended service schedule, use high-quality diesel fuel, and address any engine performance issues promptly. Also, avoid exposing engine components to excessive moisture.


The Chevrolet P1396 code is more than just an annoying check engine light – it’s a sign that your vehicle’s glow plug system is struggling to operate efficiently. Addressing this issue promptly can prevent more serious engine problems, improve your fuel economy, and ensure your vehicle starts reliably in all conditions.

Remember, while some car enthusiasts may feel comfortable tackling this issue themselves, don’t hesitate to consult a professional mechanic if you’re unsure. Your Chevrolet’s performance and longevity are worth the investment in proper diagnosis and repair.

By staying proactive and addressing the P1396 code quickly, you’ll keep your Chevrolet running smoothly and efficiently for years to come. Happy driving!

Meta Description

Understand the Chevrolet P1396 trouble code and its implications on your vehicle. Learn about common symptoms, affected models, diagnostic steps, and potential fixes to keep your Chevrolet running efficiently.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.