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Buick Rainier, Chevy TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy



  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    "Maybe they're decontenting the triplets to make them more reliable."

    Yup, ya never know when those "high-tech" articulating headrests, underhood and glovebox lights, map pocket on the back of the drivers seat, rear console a/c and body color side molding on the LS, etc will give you technical problems, not to mention the previously STANDARD in '02 side air bags. (Anyone see the latest small SUV side impact tests on the news the other day? I think I kinda like having the SABs now)

     Bottom line, the most likely reason is simply cost cutting. And with that came an increase in the base price. Have to pay for the incentives and GM retirees pensions somehow..
  • scottc454scottc454 Posts: 356
    That's not what I meant. By getting rid of all the extra stuff and simplifying the manufacturing process, they can create a more reliable product. By spending less time wiring up dubious gadgets and lights, they can concentrate on other things like being careful not to run wiring harnesses where they can get damaged by steering linkage, etc.

    Obviously, this doesn't apply to every little thing. It doesn't sound like it would help that much but it also doesn't sound like it would save that much money either. Anyway, it probably is just cost cutting. I was merely coming up with another possible explanation.
  • kram18kram18 Posts: 45
    Anyone have any hints on how to wire in a set of hella black magic fog lights on a trailblazer LS so they go on and off with the automatic headlights? i.e. off when the DRL's are on but on when the headlights automaticaly come on? Not sure if this is possible but I figure this is the place to ask.
  • TBlazed,
     My feelings are that the things that you mentioned that were standard equipment on the 02 LS models (rear air, side airbags) and are not on the 03 models were given to the initial year as a "perk" to get people to buy a brand new vehicle. You took a big risk buying and you were rewarded. There is, however, absolutely no excuse for eliminating the under hood light and glove box light. To save a few bucks here and there is one thing, but eliminating these necessities on a 30K+ truck is just plan rediculous.

    Just my opinion,
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    I figured the original content of these was based on sales at pre-9/11 market conditions. After 9/11 when GM came out with the Keep America Rolling campaign, that was the beginning of what has been a very expensive and difficult thing to end. They tried to end big factory incentives in May '02 and sales fell through the floor. Now they have to make up for the losses somehow to try and meet projected profits they originally planned into earnings estimates etc. So GM cuts $50-$100 in manufacturing costs from every car and truck across the board. Cost cutting at every level was a stated goal at the shareholders meeting I went to last year. Multiplied by 6 or 8 million vehicles that ain't pocket change.

    Now if somebody in the aftermarket industry wants a captive market just itching to spend money, come up with a retrofit custom foglight kit for the LS Trailblazers that interfaces with the BCM for full automatic control.
  • iexplore2000iexplore2000 Posts: 237
    I say go ahead and create a "Accolades, Rants and Raves" forum for the triplets and leave this one in tact. Something tells me that the latter forum will continue to dominate while the "I love my Triplet" forum quickly dies or gets the once over from curious minds and those not willing to post (or feel the need to post) just how HAPPY they are with their triplet.

    Honestly, giving the whining, etc. THIS forum has been the MOST useful for getting problems, issues and concerns addressed. Heck.. If my vehicle was trouble free then I would probably NEVER post here either.. I mean.. what for? Why waste your time when your vehicle is a gem?

    Even though I went through all the trouble with my 02 Envoy, after 8 months of selling my 02, I decided to retry my luck with an 03! So far so good @ 1500K on the odometer! Do some research and you will quickly find out that the competition is still far behind when comparing the features that you can get on a TRIPLET. Heck.. even the $60K Lincoln Navigator that I was 95% sold on purchasing did not even have as many features as the triplets!

    I agree that we shouldn't use this forum to BASH the triplets; and I ESPECIALLY hate it when NON-TRIPLET owners peek their heads in here to add their worthless two cent comments on "Gee.. after reading this, I am soo glad that I didn't get a triplet!" GROW UP.. Why even bother wasting your time typing a message, go join the other forum of the vehicle you DID buy!

    Have a good weekend everyone!

  • drcsfdrcsf Posts: 36
    I have put 3,000 miles on the 2002 Envoy SLT I bought used a couple of months ago. I have continued to read every post here, good and bad.

    My only complaints are: The power mirrors rarely return to their exact position, which I will address with my dealer. The leather seat cushion presses on the lighter cover and the center console, making a mark when folded down; I am now keeping a hand towel in the car as a buffer. But my biggest complaint is my wife has basically taken over the use of the truck, as she absolutely LOVES driving it.

    I read all the complaints here and I do feel these boards provide a good resource for those with problems. But I think all manufacturers have issues with their products. My Toyota Camry is equipped with their V6 engine, an engine used in millions of Avalons, Camry's, Highlanders, ES and RX 300's. This engine has a major problem of turning perfect motor oil into sludge and completely failing, sometimes in less than 20,000 miles. Toyota denied the issue for years, then blamed it on poor maintenance and then finally admitted a problem exists. I have a letter in my files stating Toyota will pay any for engine failure due to sludge or gelling of motor oil. Anyone unfamiliar with this issue just search the web; there are entire anti-Toyota sites devoted to this. My neighbor's Volkswagon Passat had a major iginition coil recall, as did most other Volkswagons and Audis. And my other neighbor bought a early Mercedes M Class which was much, much worse than most triplets. And there are probably similar stories for most manufacturers.

    Ours are really very nice vehicles, but obviously not perfect. So keep the discussion on problems coming as it is helpful, but don't think for a minute GM or these triplets have the monopoly on complaints.

  • zueslewiszueslewis Posts: 2,353
    power mirror problems, like described above.

    The dealerships do several things: reprogram the mirror control module; replace the control module; or replace the Body Control Module (BCM).
  • ross1962ross1962 Posts: 229
    Well, it depends on what he means by normal! It does happen in a lot of Trailblazers, but that doesn't make it "normal". I have it too and have asked to have it fixed. They told me they started up 5 brand new Trailblazers and heard the same thing. I know it's benign. It's not hurting anything, but I still want it fixed. So, I'll wait until the TSB comes out and then take it in. No big hurry - I just crank up the new Allman Brothers CD! (Which is really good BTW!)
  • Looking under the hood of my 03 TrailBlazer LT I noticed something I had not noticed before. There is a red wire with an end crimped onto it (definitly looks factory because it doesn't have any insulation on the crimp) that is not attached to anything. Seems like it is the power wire for something. It is in the loom that is headed to the fuse box under the hood. Is this some sort of a diagnostic wire that only has to be hooked up when troubleshooting or is it supposed to be connected? Does anybody else have this? I had a remote start installed and am wondering if something had to be disconnected to make it work. By the way, the truck is an LT with no options.

  • quickdtooquickdtoo Posts: 266
    That's the power wire for a trailer brake controller, attaches to the terminal near it on the power distribution center after connecting the wires under the dash to a brake controller. tim
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    "It depends on what he means by normal.. They told me they started up 5 brand new Trailblazers and heard the same thing."

    If that was in response to my comments, the resetting sound heard at power up does seem to be just that-"normal". My friend's inst cluster that was just fixed 2 weeks ago makes a slight sound at initial power up when the tach pointer sets to "0", just like mine does. But you should not hear a noise coming from it when the engine is running. My friend's emitted a noise continuously when the engine was running. That is NOT normal. His didn't start making a continuous audible noise until he had 15K miles or so on it.
  • aldan93aldan93 Posts: 202
    I was wondering what would an alternative vehicle be compared to these TB's? NO EXPLORERS, or foreign models at all. I like spending the money where I make the money!
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    " I was wondering what would an alternative vehicle be compared to these TB's?"

    Other than a TrailBlazer? Olds Bravada, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, Isuzu Ascender. Nothing else compares power- and price-wise for a full perimeter frame, truck based mid-sized SUV (or Passenger Truck as I prefer to call them).
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    Went down to East Texas about a 280 mile round trip from D-FW yesterday. Filled up before I hit the road and filled up again same pump, same position, got 20.5 mpg. That was doing the trip each way in 2 hours flat, averaging 70 mph, and blasting around slower traffic on two-lane Highway175 at wide-open throtle at least 15 or 20 times! With the 3.42 gears, it's good to 90 or so in 2nd gear. By the time I would get settled back in the right lane and look in the mirror the vehicles I passed would be a half-mile behind me!
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    Re: deleted message- "Another alternative" by canddmeyer Jun 22, 2003 (5:13 pm)
    canddmeyer stated: "Toyota 4Runner is an alternative. I believe its the best vehicle for the $ in this class, & a V8 is optional. I currently own a 1997 Blazer, but due to owners statements here there won't be a replacement Chevy in my future. While I'd really like a Tahoe, my needs don't call for anything bigger than a midsize SUV."

    A 1997 Blazer doesn't even compare. These are well past their second year of production and the majority of glitches are resolved. Plus, GM stood up and took responsibility for any engine block sleeve problems in the initial first year batch without us even asking for a warranty extension. But a Toyota 4Runner may be an OK alternative too.

     Didn't Toyota have a serious engine oil sludging problem they took several years to finally admit to? Just remember, even Toyota/Lexus has service departments that are kept very busy. I saw one of the sludged up engines apart last time I visited a friend that works at a local Lexus dealer. What a mess in a 3 year old engine.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Canddmeyer may have deleted his own post. I am not aware of any host action taken on the post in question.

    tidester, host
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    was off-topic. I was a little dismayed after responding to the post that it was gone. But, the ol' page cache memory came in handy. Didn't want to sound like I was talking to myself, and I thought Canddmeyer had a couple of valid points.
  • Wouldn't you know it, right before a 1400 mile trip on Tuesday! Yesterday the the wipers would not turn off, unless your in Park, shift into R or Dive and they sudden start working on their own at a random rate while in the off position. Today same thiing but now the washer motor won't stop running spaying the windshield constantly! I pulled fuse #42 that the manual says is for the "Wiper/Washer". The Wipers still are doing their thing but atleast the washer motor stopped!

    Dealership is going to love this one, we are now their "favorite" customer after starting a Lemon-Law claim due to the AC system. Mysteriously soon afterwards we got a call from a GM rep stating that they have found the issue with what is causing the AC problems in the TB's and they had a truck come to our house and replace a module of some sorts , end of claim for us. We are now called Mr and Mrs McKinnon by the dealership service staff and get first priority. This after my wife laid a verbal whooping into the General Manager about service and the service department lax attitude to our problems. Mind you losing the AC in FL in May is not a pleasant thing when it is the family ride. We have had the TB in the shop every moth since Jan for the AC going out as others have described in this forum. In April they had to replace a connector too as it was partially melted! I knew that was not the root cause.

    We sure like this vehicle but this is the biggest POS GM we've ever owned. We had a wiper problem with them not working 2 months after we got it, now this again. I smell a lemon law re file again!

    If anyone wants a list of the parts "changed" for the AC problem we had, email me at and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.

    Don McKinnon
    2003 TB Ext
  • aldan93aldan93 Posts: 202
    AC doesn't work, rattle under car exhaust? skid plate for oil change doesn't close, gasket in the rear is coming off near plate, UHMM I think thats it? Trip number 8 to the dealer. AC did work one day, then blows nice hot air!!! Only in America, great work GM all you people should be proud!
  • dlaredlare Posts: 43
    When I installed my brake controller I didn't have to mess with anything under the hood - did I miss something? The controller seems to work fine after just connecting to the 4 wires under the dash.

  • jknjjknj Posts: 2
    You only need to connect the wire under the hood if you require 12 volt power to your trailer. It's not necessary for 4 wire trailer hook ups.
  • "re: Unattached wire by jknj Jun 23, 2003 (10:48 am)
    You only need to connect the wire under the hood if you require 12 volt power to your trailer. It's not necessary for 4 wire trailer hook ups."

    Huh? The standard 4 wire hook-up under the dash includes 12 volt power thru the brake controller to the electric brakes on the trailer. What does this extra wire do? Still confused. My controller works fine. Will have to ck and see if I have an extra wire in my engine compartment.
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    sportbikenut do you know if that is switched 12V or always-on 12V? Looking for a good switched 12V source easy to get to so I can hook up an accessory that needs 12V switched power. (I know there's lots of places I could splice into, but don't want to modify any wiring while it's still in warranty so they can't blame me for anything)
  • jknjjknj Posts: 2
    Yes, you are correct regarding the standard 4 wire hook up under the dash. The loose wire under the hood supplies 12 volt power to pin 4 on the 7 pin trailer connector in the back. You do not need to connect it unless what you are towing requires it. I use it to provide 12 volt power to my camper while towing (power for the refrigerator). Electric brakes will work fine without attaching it.
  • ltz2003ltz2003 Posts: 24
    can anyone tell if there is any bulletin on ac that blows ice cubes most of the time and warm only once in a while. any info will be helpfull thanks
  • nuyorkahnuyorkah Posts: 100
    "can anyone tell if there is any bulletin on ac that blows ice cubes most of the time and warm only once in a while. any info will be helpfull thanks"

    Air Conditioning (A/C) Inoperative/Intermittent, A/C Blows Warm Air (Replace A/C Low Pressure Cycling Switch) #03-01-39-007 - 05/29/2003)

    2002-2003 Chevrolet TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer EXT
    2002-2003 GMC Envoy, Envoy XL
    2002-2003 Oldsmobile Bravada

    Some customers may comment that the A/C system is intermittently inoperative or blows warm air.

    An intermittent inoperative (open) A/C low pressure cycling switch may be the cause. This is an intermittent condition and temperatures may play a critical role if the vehicle is in the failed mode or operating as designed.

    Make a service appointment


    HVAC System Inoperative for a Drive Cycle, Poor HVAC System Performance in High Ambient Temperatures (Update HVAC Control Module Software) #02-01-39-005 - (09/23/2002)

    2002-2003 Chevrolet TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer EXT
    2002-2003 GMC Envoy, Envoy XL
    2002-2003 Oldsmobile Bravada

    Some customers may comment about no cold air from the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system during a drive cycle. This concern may occur at any time during the drive cycle and at any temperature setting. The HVAC system operation returns to normal after the vehicle has been keyed to off and restarted. This concern is intermittent and most likely to occur on hot days. This concern may be found on vehicles equipped with manual (CJ2) and automatic (CJ3) HVAC systems. Other customers may comment about poor HVAC system performance in high ambient temperature conditions. This concern may be present in automatic (CJ2) HVAC systems only. An HVAC control module software update was put into all production vehicles beginning in September 2002. Vehicles built in September 2002 and earlier may need this software update.

    Make a service appointment
  • richlavoierichlavoie Posts: 56
    Finally picked up my Trailblazer 2003 on last Thursday. Before I begin, let me tell you that I am a real winner and will never hesitate in reporting a problem. In fact, I will be fast on this board if anything comes up.

    The experience at the dealership wasn't an easy one. We had agreed on the price, but their mechanics are on lock out. The car was poorly prepared. Tires unballanced, alignment off, engine light and 4x4 light came up. In any case, it was all fixed easilly. Engine light was caused by the fuel cap.

    I don't know why car salesman need to lie, even if the truth is not that bad? It seams that telling the truth scares them, even if that truth is quite fine. I have received the 3.42 although I had asked for the 3.71 axle rating. But I asked for the 3.71 after i had ordered the car, and I was too late making the change. But instead of giving me that story, the salesman tried to convince me that 3.42 was so much better and could even tow more then 3.71. I had to tell him no to even try.

    They were also very surprised when I toom by air thingy out to check the tire pressure, which was at 37 and 38 PSI when it should be at 32. They were also surprised when I checked the trailer wiring 9which was fine). Lovely when you hold the knowledge (thanks to this board).

    What do I like I (remember that I had a one week rental on a 4runner, a explorer and a Grand Cherokee in the past 2 months)

    Great ride. If you don't like the ride, you don't want a truck but a minivan or a CUTE-UV. This ride is outstanding for a truck. Beautiful vehicle. The seats are very comfortable (unless you use to drive a BMW). The inside finish is excellent (except for a few exceptions). Lights come on and off by themself. Power remains on for 20 minutes inside after you turn off the engine. Very quiet (those ventvisor do a great job). Engine is very quiet and very powerful 9no problem with my 3000 lbs trailer). Doors lock and unlock properly when you start and put on park. Sound system is fine on the LS for the price. Rear and front wipers work excellent (up to now...). No vibration on the gaz pedal (but it isn't cold yet...). Gaz mileage is better then expected. It cost me only $10 more for a 600km drive (about 420 miles, and about $7.20 US). Not bad for a truck this powerful. This is not an off road vehicle like the Jeep or the Toyota, but it is much more comfortable on the road. It is powerfull, but will not take a Civic at a red light. Its power is constant (I guess they call it torque...).

    What I would suggest GM improves for next time:

    Don't start on a new vehicle, but improve the TB like Nissan has done on the pathfinder, which is now a perfect vehicle (hope they don't Ford it up with their new model). Add the little things that you expect in a vehicle of this price. Look at Toyota and the new Sienna which has all the goodies of other minivans (and I mean all). The difference between low end and high end should be limited to leather seats, navigation system, rearward drive assist (cameras), automatic ac and heat, etc... things like compass, outside temperature, leather steering wheel should be included. Pls remove some functions from the flasher stick. G that thing is busy. Hope it doesn't break...

    But wow, I love this vehicle. GM has a real winner if they can make it reliable. Can't wait to take my trailer out.

    BTW, there is a special letter gone to Canadian customers for the engine on the 2002. GM is taking responsibility for the engine break up up to 160 000 Km (100 000 miles).
  • iexplore2000iexplore2000 Posts: 237
    Congrats on your new baby Rich... Best of luck to you.. Hopefully she will give you many miles of trouble-free driving!

    Also.. my first UH-OH's! Well.. this past weekend I experienced my first set of problems at 1600K on the odometer.

    1st.. My steering wheel control volume control button has begun to intermittently fail. It will sometimes work ONLY when it wants and at other times, it will not work at all. Very odd indeed considering that the other buttons on the steering wheel will work?? After letting the vehicle sit for a few minutes and then restarting, the problem seems to go away? Anyone else experience this?

    2nd... Wandering mirror trouble again? My driver's side mirror has started to do some very odd things.. I have the "curb view" feature activated on both mirrors because I wanted to make sure that I did not experience any issues with repositioning like I had in my 2002 Envoy. For starters, once I shifter into reverse and the mirror tilted UPWARDS towards the sky, then when shifting back into drive, the mirror went back to it's original position? I was a little spooked by this.. To correct the problem, I fine tuned the mirror while in reverse and so far it's held the correct position. Additionally, I've noticed on several occasions that the driver's side mirror would be off by a hair when returning to it's original position, so once again I would fine tune and hold down my memory #1 button. Does anyone know if GM has done any additional fine tuning to correct this problem? My vehicle was manufactured in March 2003, therefore I know that it's pretty current in terms of past-posted software calibrations and mirror actuators.

    3rd... Hmmm.. sometimes I notice that when I go over 70 mph, I get that awful steering wheel shake from the tires as if they are unbalanced? Some days are worse than others but today was by far the worst! I had both hands on the steering wheel and it felt like I was getting a arm massage? I have yet to check the wheels to see if maybe a weight had been thrown, but I will. I am guessing that maybe the wheels developed flat spots in them while sitting on the dealer's lot? I am kinda afraid to have the dealer rebalance the tires because they don't use the same weights from the factory, plus if they do what they did on my 2002 Grand Am GT, after they removed the original weight, there were severe visible scratches from where the original weights used to be. It was not appealing at all. Can I continue to drive the vehicle (if the weights are intact) and will the flat spots eventually become ROUND again? Ha, ha.



  • ltz2003ltz2003 Posts: 24
    I told the dealer it was that low pressure switch and they looked it up and said there is nothing on that. I can hardly wait to get there in the morning and show them the info. thank you very much
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