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Chevrolet TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, GMC Envoy XL, Isuzu Ascender, Oldsmobile Bravada, SUV
#12328 of 18329 My Trailblazer experience (so far)
Jul 28, 2003 (5:52 am)
I don't ussually post things like this but this morning I got to the limit as my 2003 Trailblazer that I've had for 4 months waits to be towed back to the dealer.
Problems to date.....first while on vacation with a vehicle that's 6 weeks old, the power steering pump fries. Since it's 6PM the roadside assistance (that's a funny name since it's anything but) tell's us they will send a tow truck and we can go to Enterprise and rent a car. They GIVE US the number to Enterprise and TELL US to call them. Bad luck, it's past 6PM, Enterprise is closed! GM's response, we'll tow your vehicle for you. Great, what do I do with my family and pets I have in my truck? Their answer? Oh they didn't have one.....we drove it as is (no power steering) to the closest Hotel to the closest dealer and stayed the night (per Roadside Asst direction) I guess if Enterprise is closed so is Chevrolet! After being told by Roadside Assistance that the hotel would be reimbursed, upon turning the bill in we were given 60% of the bill and told that it is not covered. At least our dealer covered the rest eventually. The next day we got a rental at Enterprise (I guess none of the several hundred cars on the dealers lot were available) and continued our trip. Got our TB back the next week.
Next....several weeks later it's starting to get hot out! Turn on the AC.....goes cools as expected then starts intermitting warm and cool air. Took it in, they replaced a cycle sensor on the AC system.
Next....wife can't open the back driver's side door. Then it works then it don't....figure we'll have it looked at next time it's convenient. No big deal......
Next....driving down the highway, the semi next to me starts changing lanes into my lane and almost hits me....hit the horn!! OH, IT DOESN'T WORK! Worked several days ago. Works the day after!!!! Can you say electrical short?? Have to have that looked at too.
The very next day as we're leaving work, I open the door (nothing else, key still in hand) and the rear AC fan's are going! The car is off, key is out, fans are going! Called for the appointment immediately. This morning (BTW the appt is tommorow morning) go out to start the TB and surpise, surprise it's dead. No lights, no nothing. Find out another fine feature of this vehicle, YOU CAN'T GET YOUR KEY OUT OF THE IGNITION IF THE BATTERY IS DEAD. That's right, you put in your key, try to start it and it's locaked in. Luckily it's on my driveway (this time). Of course, having your electrical problems drain your battery to nothing does alot to hurt the long term health of your battery but I'm not planning on owning this one too much longer.
Now, I have had quite a few vehicles in my day and I relaize vehicles have problems, even new ones. But when you pay $3x,000 for a vehicle you should be able to depend on it for at least a couple of years. I would never consider keeping this vehicle past the warranty. I coudn't afford it!
I traded my Dodge Ram 1500 for this thing and I am major league unhappy that I did. Went based on my experience with a 1999 Tahoe! That was a great vehicle. Wish I still had it! Would not recommomend the TrailBlazer to anyone from my experience.
Jul 28, 2003 (6:08 am)
I haven't had any trouble at all changing the oil on my TB. There's a deflector molded in to the undercover near the corner of the access hole, right below the filter, and it catches 90% of the oil if you allow the filter to drain out before completely removing it. If your in a hurry though then you probably make a big mess.
Yes, the filter is offset from the access hole somewhat, but you can easily reach it from the right side by reaching up around the undercover.
On a scale of 1 (difficult) to 10 (easy) I would have to rate the TB a 9. Just for comparison, I would rate the 88 Taurus I once had as a 1 or 2, since the filter was hard to get to and I had to shove a piece of cardboard under it to get it off without spilling oil all over the frame.
Either way you look at it though you're going to get your hands dirty. It's just a fact of life.
Jul 28, 2003 (6:18 am)
Anyone have any strong opinions on what's best with regard to, as REI says, "Car Travel Solutions"? Looking at the Sherpak Roof Bag, with the main reason for choosing the bag over a hard shell carrier being the convenience of storage. My SLT has the roof rack, and I am concerned about abrasions (there is a pad that is sold with the carrier).
Appreciate any thoughts/experiences when using boxes/bags/baskets.
#12331 of 18329 Re: Oil Change help
Jul 28, 2003 (7:43 am)
A little trick I learned many years ago is to use a plastic bag over the filter to catch the mess. A bread bag will work but a 1 gal zip lock works even better because of the extra stiffness to keep it open. To really make things less messy, remove the front skid plate by removing the 4 bolts retaining it. tim
Jul 28, 2003 (7:57 am)
That sounds good - I tried the bread bag trick on my wagon last month and it didn't work worth a flip.
#12333 of 18329 3rd wipe motor and counting
Jul 28, 2003 (8:26 am)
tblazed....thankyou for your help with the wiper motor problem and your offer of a pic to show where to drill the drainage hole. I took the truck to the dealer this morning and was told drilling a hole in the bottom of the case would void the warranty. I told them if the motor fails on the hiway i'll be void as well. The dealer was very good about it and insisted to start work right away. They offered me a Durango for the day no charge! Maybe I should of taken it. I'll have my Envoy back later today though. My dealer is so service driven, it would make you all want to barf. We should get 100 of you guys to arrive on his door step at once!
Jul 28, 2003 (10:41 am)
Just replaced my BFG Open Trails at ~33K miles (less than 2/32nds tread left). Decent dry road performance, but poor grip when wet/snow. GM did the right thing with the triplets by putting real tires on them, not saddling them with the usual lousy OEM tires. (I'm a survivor of the Ford/Firestone debacle.)
Replaced the Goodrich's with a store brand (Big O Tires - i.e., Goodyears) with exactly the same specs (speed, load, temp, traction). Gas mileage has dropped 15%+ on the first four tanks on the new treads. However, it has been very hot (full time a/c) and tourist traffic has been worse, so I can't blame it on the tires (yet).
#12335 of 18329 Drivability update
Jul 28, 2003 (11:09 am)
Sorry I haven't posted an update lately. I have been busy and just had a chance to get caught up on all of the posts.
I posted an engine performance issue recently. The engine (I6) is behaving like a cyndler is missing intermittenly. I took it to Love Chevy here in Columbia, SC. They kept it three days, finally took it for a spin with the scan tool attached, declared "no codes" and gave it back to me. At least they didn't charge me for their "trouble." Since then I have run two bottles of Techron through. It's better but the problem is still there. I have been quite busy lately, so I have lived with it but this is my plan:
Change the fuel filter (again)
Rotate and balance the tires (just to eliminate that excuse)
Run at least one more bottle of Techron through
If those don't cure it, I plan to buy a coil and start rotating it through the cylinders. If that doesn't do it, I plan to return to the dealer for some serious yelling.
One symptom that maybe others can check and post back on for me. With the car in park, engine fully warm, AC on or off, if I add enough throttle to get the engine up to 1500 rpms, there is a noticable engine vibration. Above and below it is rock steady. Can some others check their car and tell me if you get the same syptom?
#12336 of 18329 Oil Change, Tires, MPG
Jul 28, 2003 (11:21 am)
When changing the oil, if you turn the wheel to the right fully, you can reach through the suspension for fairly easy access to the filter. I have a pan big enough to catch the oil from the drain plug and the filter without repositioning the pan. I generally loosen the filter first, pull the drain plug, walk away for about 5 minutes (about enough time to check other fluid levels, tire pressure, etc.). Then finish the job. I might get a few drips from the frame under the filter, but I can live with it.
I have about 41k on my TB LS. The BFG OpenTrails are about half worn out. I haven't measured the depth, but I expect to get about 50k to 60k out of them. I plan to buy three more, put the full-size spare on the ground, and go another 50k to 60k.
Funny thing, I had three sets of the OE Firestone tires on my 92 Explorer. I never had any problem with them. But I gratefully accepted a new set of Bridgestones to replace the Firestones that had almost 40k on them. It's an SUV with all-terrain tires on it. You can't expect to leave them on for a gozillian miles, inflate them at 26 psi, drive 80 mph, and not have a problem.
As for my TB, I am getting about 17 mpg in town (17-mile commute, no freeways), about 20 mpg on the freeway (pretty much what the sticker says). If the speedlimit is 70 mph, I am usually driving 75 mph to maybe 78 mph if the traffic is light.
Jul 28, 2003 (11:48 am)
Don't expect much sympathy on this board, as most of the posters are convinced G M's Triplets are Gods' gift to motorists. I happen to not be one of them. I have tried, unsuccessfully to point out the extent of the triplets problems only to have others dismiss comments like mine as "whining". Call Chevy customer service and let them know the extent of the problems your TB has had. Keep a file and record of your calls. They may be willing to offer you an extended warranty at a reduced cost. If they do, I would jump at it. These triplets will cost a kings fortune to maintain after the warranty is up. I also plan on ridding myself of the problem before the extended warranty coverage lapses.
I had asked the readers here some time ago to list any one system or part in the tripletts which has not been mentioned here as having failed. I have not read even one post in response.
I understand G M gives a very good discount to employees and now relatives of employees and posibly anyone who knows an employee in order to get someone to buy these things. No wonder so many people are apparently reluctant to respond.