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Isuzu Rodeo



  • If you do a search on any isuzu forum (4x4wire, planetisuzoo, etc), you'll find the "squeaking noise in reverse" problem reported. Some blame it on the design of the calipers that allow the pad to move around too much when the pads are worn. Others say that the pad is worn down to the wear tabs which strike the disk. Regardless, its always the rear brakes and replacing with OEM pads does the trick. Sometimes the problem arises when putting in non-oem pads, so go with the dealer pads.
  • Whenever transmission problems arise, you should have the transmission fluid flushed as a precaution. The Isuzu transmissions are very sensitive to voltage. So, make sure your battery and alternator are in perfect shape. Cheap rebuilt alternators from local parts stores have been known to trigger the transmission light on these vehicles. Also, check serpentine belt tension. If you have installed car stereo amps that draw lots of current, then remove it and see if this helps. You can try to reset the trans light by removing the negative battery cable for 20 minutes. If the transmission is working fine, I would not worry about it too much. When transmission registers 3 faults it will enter a 'limp mode' to protect itself. In this mode, the trans will stay in 3rd gear all the time. You can still drive it gingerly to a mechanic at that time.
  • Boris2Boris2 Posts: 177
    Thank you,

    I'll get the brakes checked out. The problem is that none of the brake places will want to deal with OEM pads - they make most of their money on parts that they use. Dealers will charge about $250+ per axle. Is there anything special I need to know about changing rear brakes on Rodeo by myself? Last time I changed brakes by myself was on '89 Tercel, and they were drum brakes.

    Is there anything special I need to keep in mind as I'm dealing with ABS brakes?

    There are no good manuals for this car. The only manual I found covered Rodeos from '91 (I think) to 2004 and their sample vehicle was a '97 rodeo (I think 2WD).
  • I haven't had to do my rears yet, but it is harder than on most other cars. Fronts are not too bad, but the parking brake and general design may make it a troublesome job. I would call st charles isuzu and order the pads, then bring them to a mechanic and have him do it. I heard all 4 oem pads (front and rear) cost 100 bucks with free shipping from st charles. This forum won't allow posting of phone number for vendors so search stcharles auto on the web. They're in missouri.
  • Boris2Boris2 Posts: 177
    I'll call them up. I've called them before for parts and can look up their number. The pads from my local dealer will cost about $60 per axle. The problem is to find anybody who would use the parts that I bring to them. I'll try though. I'll try to take it to brake inspection this week.

    Just out of curiousity I called one of the local dealers here and they told me that the price to for a brake job will be about 2 hours of labor ($105/hour) for each axle + parts. Don't think I'll use them :-)
  • We have a 98 rodeo and just went through this.The dealer charges like 200.00 or so? Just for the part alone.We decided to go to the salvage yard and we purchased one for 106.00.We actually had to take the first one back because it didn't work the rear window.But my husband just took it with him and got one off of a 2003 total coming in and installed it right there and works perfect.Maybe a little bit of trouble but for the money we saved(approx 300 some odd dollars including labor + part) and ease of installing it, it was worth it to us.
  • I believe my engine is gone...I hear a ticking that gets louder with increase speed.

    Any suggestions on where I can get a used engine.
  • Boris2Boris2 Posts: 177
    Very interesting experience that I wanted to share with everybody. I took my car to one of the Brakes Plus locations here in Denver and experienced the most straight on attempt to overcharge/overprice/underestimate I've ever seen.

    When I took it in, i complained that the steering wheel pulsates when brakes are applied at high speed and about that squeaking noise I've already mentioned in this forum. I also suggested the take an extra look at rear brakes for that noise. When they called back they said that the front rotors need to be turned (well, duh...) and, therefore, the pads need to be replaced for $159 + $50 rotors + $50 grease packs. They didn't find anything wrong with the rear brakes but he said that he didn't hear any sounds coming from it. I asked him if he got a chance to test drive it and he said no.

    Hmm... Getting frustrated, I asked him to put it back together and test drive it and let me know. After two hours, I called him myself and he said that he did hear the sound (he also said that he just didn't hear first time but did drive it. Hmm...) but didn't know where it was coming from. His guess was it might be coming from e-brake system, but they didn't check it out as they normally don't do it as part of the brake inspection as it's unlikely that it will go bad. When asked if it's possible that the drums or the pads in that system are worn, he said “Yes, but unlikely.” When asked if it may be not aligned, he told me the same thing, while still admitting that's the only possible place the sound might be coming from. He refused to check it as, as he claimed, they didn't have enough time and too many cars in line (they had my truck there for 4 hours at that time).

    When I picked it up and looked at the “suggestions” that were listed in the estimate I noticed they “suggested” I change the shocks and serpentine belt. The belt didn't surprise me too much (except the price tag on it was $115: $50 labor and $65 parts), but shocks did. When asked, he explained that shocks are fine, not leaking or anything but “they” recommend replacing them. I wondered who “they” and his answer was: “Dealers and other such places”. I don't remember seeing “replace shocks” in my maintenance schedule for $60K mi. In fact, i don't remember seeing it in ANY scheduled maintenance plan for any vehicle.

    So, basically, the results of my brake inspection are as follows: they didn't feel like messing too much with the brakes to check it out completely even though the possible problem area was determined.
    They found a $300 problem(front brakes) which the found sufficient to pay for their time.
    They tried to sell me unnecessary parts with the most ridiculous reason.
    AND the overshot dealers prices by a good portion on the belt. (dealer wants $30 for the belt and $50 labor).
  • whoa...slow down. A ticking sound can be hydraulic lifters which are known to get noisy in these vehicles. Try changing oil to synthetic Mobil 1 0w-30. Or, the ticking could be caused by the timing belt tensioner. You got a lot to look at before pricing out a new engine.
  • I hate to over generalize, but I've heard so many stories like yours that I generally stay away from these automotive chains, including midas and the like. I would get recommendations on a good mechanic and go that route. Go to your local library and check out 'consumer's checkbook'. They're like a localized consumer reports. They have ratings on local auto repair shops. Good place to start.
  • Thnaks anthony2n. Upon further inspection I noticed some burns around the spask plugs. Turns out the coils were burn up. The noise sounded really bad though.
  • Any suggestions on replacing the car alarm remote on my isuzu Rodeo 1998.
  • There are a whole bunch of car alarm remotes on ebay. Buy one that matches your old one and reprogram. They should come with reprogramming instructions.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Rear brakes are just as easy as the front. There is no parking brake mechanism built into the brake system on the Isuzus.

    The rear parking brake is a separate drum-in disc design that doesn't effect changing the pads, nor the rotors.

  • Boris2Boris2 Posts: 177
    It looks like it's time for me to get a hand on changing transmssion and differential oil. Anybody has done that?

    On 4WD i should have 2 differentials, right? Are the plugs (drain and fill) located so that it's relatively easy to find them? Any special tools I'll need to drain and refill that? Anything I need to keep in mind as far as being extra caution when doing it?

    Oh, the truck is '01 Rodeo 4WD.
  • I have 85k miles on my isuzu, she has been good to me just an alternator in the 5 years I have had her.

    Question, I have read here the timing belt can wait til 100k, but then I know the suggested by the owner manual is 75-90k. I am about to make the annual trip to Florida for the Holidays but should I be worried about braking down? Should I change it before the trip?

    Any adive she seems to be using oil some, i just put in some slick 50 to see if that will help. Anyone else have this problem and solved it?

  • Have a 94 rodeo, 3.2 liter, the up shift lite keeps coming on in fifth gear and after 5 miles of driving the check engine light comes on and stays on until i let off the throttle then goes out and soon as i push the accelerator it comes back on, vehicle runs great no problems with the lights on , anybody got a clue what i can check, thanks John
  • ctsxxctsxx Posts: 2
    I have a question for you or anyone that would like to anwser it.

    I am looking at buying my 17 year old daughter a 1995 Isuzu Rodeo with 106,000 miles but don't know anything about them. I was told that the factory rod bearing go out around 100,000 miles other than that I have not been able to learn much about them.

    so I am asking you all are they reliable,any problems I should know about, would it make a good vehicle for my daughter?

    Thanks for you help.

  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 39,971

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  • I own a 95.5 Rodeo (bought it new) and it has been very reliable. Problems have included dead starter, broken speedometer cable, overcharging alternator (there is a recall for this now). That's it. Not bad for nearly 10 years of ownership.


    The hydraulic lifters on these engines tend to tick, so on-time oil changes are a must. Also, many of these engines burn (lose) oil and if your teenager doesn't keep her eye on it, you could end up with a siezed engine. Mine loses about 1/2 quart every 3k miles. I've heard some lose 1 quart every 1k miles.


    With 101K miles, make sure the timing belt and water pump have been replaced, otherwise expect to pay an additional $600 to $1000 to make that happen. Make sure the transmission fluid has been replaced in the past.


    Overall, I like the vehicle a lot. The thing that will make your experience as good as mine rests on how well that vehicle has been maintained. Safety wise, frontal crash test results on this vehicle wasn't very good. On the other hand, this Suv handles better than many other suvs, in my opinion. But, with any SUV there is a roll-over risk which you should consider given a teenager, with teenager-judgements, will be driving. I only get around 15mpg in city driving and maybe 17 in highway driving. That's something to consider too.


    Also note that Isuzu vehicles have very low resale value so shop around, you may be able to pick up a newer rodeo than you expect.
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