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Buick Rainier, Chevy TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy



  • ficussficuss Posts: 541
    you're right Tom, your Envoy doesn't look a bit like a Forester. Remember though, that when you or any other "mutant" posts a picture of your handy work, some of the "non mutants" may chime in too. It is this feedback which drives Detroit to make changes in their products. Who would have thought the P.T. Cruiser would be so popular or the Pontiac Aztec for that matter. Cosmetic modifications to cars usually don't matter much to anyone but the driver of the car. It is when people modify the mechanical or electrical systems of a car and thus make them possibly dangerous to the other drivers that we should be concerned. People should be required to have more education, practical knowledge, experience and additional liability insurance than the original designer to make any mechanical or electrical design changes to any vehicle.

    P.S. you should obscure you license plate when posting pictures, otherwise the mutant hunters can find you.

  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    Hey Scott - I know you have expressed before how much you liked the old '70 SS Chevelle. When I drive my modified TB now, the feel of the suspension, cornering and handling are very similar to that of my old '71 SS w/402 I had that came with the huge front bar and the old, simple, no parts to wear out, rear bar that atached between the two rear lower contol arms. The TB feels more nimble, tighter, and responsive than the SS ever did. The rack-and-pinion steering, I am sure, helps in that department.

    What GM needs to do IMO is have a "Z71" suspension option for the off-roaders and a "ZQ8" type performance suspension option for us ON-roaders.
  • scottc454scottc454 Posts: 356
    I hear ya, but look what happens when people dare to be different:

    I see entirely too many of these mutant cars.
    There needs to be some criticism at times to prevent this sort of thing.
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    "I love the look of the "level" ride. My Envoy has 1-1/2" difference just from the front to the back of the running boards. Hit the brakes and you feel like the rear end is two feet above you. With the suspension mod you did, do you think the tongue weight of a boat trailer will drop the rear end below the front end?"

    It might. These new springs are variable or progressive rate springs, so they get firmer the more compressed they are, compared to the regular springs. If that becomes an issue in the future I will add Airlifts (P/N 60779) to the rear springs so I can adjust as needed. Then I can get the benefit of the improved handling and still load it down.
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    So you don't think a '69 Plymouth Superbird rear wing would look good grafted onto my TB...?? Of course paint it fluorescent green too..
  • scottc454scottc454 Posts: 356
    Go for it. However, you have to go around telling people how much faster it makes your Trailblazer and how much more traction you get with it.
  • I cannot believe you would talk about installing the Superbird wing on your TB with no mention of the nose cone???

    Just another example of a slacker mutant doing a half-a**ed job again.
  • 2002slt2002slt Posts: 228
    "I don't know about other areas in the U.S., but in northern Illinois, nine out of ten Envoy drivers are soccer moms. And, now that I think about it, I've only seen one male Envoy driver in the 18 months I've owned mine."

    I'm in the western suburbs of Chicago and would have to say it's quite the opposite. I see maybe two out of ten female drivers. I have three friends that own either an Envoy, or a TB and they're all male. Granted, their wives may drive them from time to time, though.
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    Dang... I knew I forgot sump'n!

    And the "bee-beep" horn- gotta find one of those too..
  • Guys,
     I am in New England and, as I am sure many of you have seen on TV, it's bitterly cold here. With the wind chill, it's about 25 below zero:-( Anyways, when i started up the TrailBlazer this morning, it's an 03 LT that I bought new in May, I heard a nasty screaming noise. I thought the starter didn't completely disengage at first. I immediately shut it off, then re-started. I now noticed that it didn't really sound like a grinding noise as I had first thought, but more of a loud squeal. I shut it off again and re-started. It continued. As I moved the steering wheel, I noticed that the noise changed and, within a few more seconds, went away. This leads me to believe that it's either the power steering pump or something belt driven. I checked the power steering fluid and it's full. Anyone else experience this? After work today (the truck was sitting about 8 or 9 hours) the noise again came back when i started it, but didn't last as long. Is this a common problem? Is replacing the pump the solution? Also, I was surprised that the engine didn't crank over at the speed that it nearly does when warm. I understand it was extremely cold, but it was as if the battery was really weak. Please post back if you have any info on this.

  • cparise1cparise1 Posts: 109
    Might want to check into the tach. The gears that drive the tach can grind and create a noise. I originally thought my brake pads were grinding the rotors because I first noticed the noise while decelerating. The mechanic diagnosed the problem by going for test drive and gently reving the engine in neutral. The fix is to remove and replace (service) the instrument cluster. I had mine done under warranty and its perfectly quite now (33K). Was without the car over nite.

    This was my experience, hope it helps to diagnose your problem or at least eliminate likely suspects.

  • cparise1cparise1 Posts: 109
    I heard with the wind chill its going be -100 tonight. I once had a Saab, known for winter and cold weather driving, that on a particularly nasty morning sounded the horn for 30 seconds on start up. Only happened once, so I hope your problem goes away with warmer weather.

  • scottc454scottc454 Posts: 356
    Someone mentioned the same thing a few pages back. For me, I always hear a bit of that same noise every time its real cold. This has happened in several cars that I've owned.
    However, it's only been below zero in Denver a couple times since I've owned my Trailblazer.

    It's a whining noise, but goes away fairly quickly. So, it may be a normal thing and perhaps tolerances are such that some pumps are noisier than others.
    I wouldn't worry about it. Power steering pumps are generally pretty tough and are one of the cheaper things to replace.
    As for cranking speed, make sure your battery is good, but engines are always slow to crank when they're cold. The battery has less power when it's cold and the oil is pretty thick at that temperature. Don't get me started on the benefits
    of synthetic oil in the extreme cold.
  • hardhawkhardhawk Posts: 702
    I have the air suspension on my Envoy. It sat too high for my tastes so I had the dealer adjust the settings on the air suspension and lower it by a little more than an inch. It is level now like the TB in the earlier posts. An added benefit is the headlights now work at night. Before they were far too low IMO. No ill effect when I tow my 5000# boat. Still stays level. Suspension adjust was zero cost. I added a Corsa dual exhaust tip because I am too cheap to spring for the Borla.
  • Thanks for the reply. I do have Mobil1 in it, by the way. I'll look for the old posts you mentioned.

  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    You might want to check into getting the power steering fluid flushed out and replaced with Cold Climate power steering fluid. There is a bulletin about that (01-02-32-005) that was issued before the '03s came out. Don't know if that applies to the '03s but it might be worth a try at the dealer.
  • fsvfsv Posts: 196
    Question:I can get now an '03 leftover Isuzu Ascender for $30,000. It is fully loaded V8, Bose, heated seats, running Boards + you name it truck with Isuzu's double (of GM's) warranty. Is it a good price for an '03?
    Also, I am a little disappointed with a lot of GM truck problems so vividly described on this forum - so, is it worth getting one of these GM truck over an import, lets say Sequoya or Pathfinder Armada, even if it's so much less money?
  • funitsfunits Posts: 55
    When the temperature reaches single digits and goes below zero, my 2002 Envoy sounds like a cat is caught in the drive belts and is not too happy! This "noise" last about 30 seconds or less. It is happen now that it is -10 F below and happened last year during sub-zero temperatures.
    Also the air suspension pump makes more noise during extremely cold temperatures and takes longer to pump up the rear suspension.
    But the engine cranks normally and starts even in -20 F below temperatures we had this week.
  • 2002slt2002slt Posts: 228
    Maybe I've been in the Chicago cold too many years, but this is NORMAL. Whenever the temperature gets below 0 your car's engine isn't going to be happy starting. Every vehicle I've ever owned, foreign and domestic, has had some sort of noise after it sat in the below 0 temps for a few hours. That's why I love my heated garage.
  • bobbiesbobbies Posts: 34 the lowering a warranty item? Curious why no charge from dealer. How did you convince them to do it free. I have an '02 Bravada and would like to lower an inch via letting out some air. My dealer likes to play it by the book. I don't know if he would do it.
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    $30K -Sounds like a deal to me. Is it new or a demo? Those first few "demo" miles can be rough sometimes. How far are you from an Isuzu dealer? Availability of Isuzu dealers might be a concern for warranty work.

    Regarding reliability, there are issues with every make and model to one degree or another. Considering last time I saw any numbers they had sold 800,000 or so triplets, the initial problems should be worked out. A lot of the problems were with the first 9 months or so of production, if you go all the way back to the beginning of this message board. Tomorrow is my 2nd anniversary of owning my TB and it's been in for a computer reprogram, 3 fairly minor recalls, one was a fuel filter clip. That's the only part that's been replaced on mine so far. I fixed a couple of minor rattles myself. But then I don't drive a whole lot, and park in a garage that never gets down below 35-40° in the winter, even if it's 10-15° outside.

    My 5¢ worth.
  • my 04 tb makes strange noises when temp.are below 10 deg.everyone ive owned has.but my problem is i cannot take off smooth from a lgt.stop sign,etc.i had an 02 was smooth as silk on take off.2 other drivers that drove both vehs.noticed the same thing without me asking them.had it to service but i dont think they tried very hard to notice it.hard to tell with foot on gas peddle and brake at the same time.thats the way they drove it.i have to be very careful not to lunge into car in front of me at red lgt.if anyone has had this problem i sure would like to know the fix for it.any help appreciated.also love the looks of the lowered trailblazer,sharp as a tack to me.
  • fsvfsv Posts: 196
    It is not really a demo - it has may be only 40 miles and 20 out of it will be the ones I did put on the car. The dealer is in "Jeyzee" (NJ), I live in Staten Island, where there is another one - so service shouldn't be really such a problem (if the car is not a lemon, of course). Hopefully ISUZU stays in business, but even if not, I think GM will pick up the service and will honor the warranty.
    I just read all the complaints you guys had, and they scared me, reminding me on the years of my Pontiac's ownership. I thought the GM bad quality is a thing of the past. Would you know, what is the best additional warranty I can buy to cover the truck to 100,000 - 120,000 miles bumper-to-bumper?
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    Curious what rear gear ratio was in the '02 and what is in the new '04? My '02 could have been described as smooth, I thought it was sluggish, has the 3.42 gears, so a reprogram at the dealer for some other driveability issues mostly when cold took care of that too. Made it more responsive from a stop.
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    Not being a big fan of extended warranties, I can only tell you to go with an extended warranty written by the manufacturer of the vehicle. Isuzu's close ties with GM should help back it up for the long term.
  • hardhawkhardhawk Posts: 702

    I treated it as a safety issue, the headlights were aimed too low to drive safely at night. Also, I felt that it did not look right either. They made the adjustment under warranty with no problem at all. There was a tech bulliten on how to do it from GM's tech website that I printed off for them. It showed how to adjust the two sensors on the system. We used to have a GM guy regularly active on this board, and he gave us tips on how to access GM's own tech website. When GM found out about us using it, they closed the loophole we were using to get access really fast!
  • tblazedtblazed Posts: 945
    The headlights are easily adjustable. You need an 8mm "torx"-type nut driver. It is not a standard hex-head unfortunately. I bought a 1/4" drive 8mm torx nut drive socket at AutoZone for $4 that works great. Had to adjust mine down a little when I lowered the rear end.

    To do it properly, you will find on each headlight lens a small round marker. Measure that height, then mark that height 25' in front of the vehicle on a wall. Do the other side the same way, then draw a straight line across those two marks. Turn on your low beams and adjust the beams so the top edge of the pattern is 2" below the center line.
  • fsvfsv Posts: 196
    May I ask you, what mileage you've got on the car, and how many miles you get on a gallon?
  • "is it worth getting one of these GM truck over an import, lets say Sequoya or Pathfinder Armada, even if it's so much less money?"

    Yes! Also, forgo options that you really don't need and you'll have less trouble. It's the gizmos that get ya! And that's true for any car, not just GM.
  • Plymouth didn't produce this hideous redneckmobile until 1970.
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