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Chevy S10/GMC S15-Sonoma: Problems & Solutions



  • eotiseotis Posts: 1
    I have an S-10 LS and in the past 2 years I have had nothing but transmission problems. It doesn't know what gear it's in (automatic)and bangs back and forth when going uphill. Now it only goes from 1st to 4th in the Overdrive position, if I put it in D, 2, or 1 it stays in Overdrive. They are going to check it Wednesday to see if it is a solenoid or the inside gears have bound together. I'm claiming and praying to Jesus that it is the solenoid=$250, not $1700.
  • the5carthe5car Posts: 26
    After 136,000 miles, my fan clutch has locked
    up and now the fan spins all the time while
    the engine roars deafeningly through gears 1-3.

    I could simply replace the clutch, but I'm also
    considering an electric fan as a replacement.

    Does anyone out there know of a simple, bolt
    on application I can find, or one that would
    only require minimum mechanical skills to

    This is for a 1997LS, 2.2L 5 speed, w A/C...

    Thanks for any suggestions...
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    I would just put another clutch on,136K isn't bad service.If you are really good at wiring and rigging things JC Whitney has fans,relays and sensors to set up a change over.I would just put a new clutch on my 99 Sonoma if it went bad,and i have the experience to wire one up.When the clutch is not engaged the is vertually no power loss.
  • newton75newton75 Posts: 2
    I agree with joe3891. Ultimately a new clutch isn't really an expensive repair. I know a guy that tried a bolt on electric fan in his s-10 Blazer, and it never could do the job. He just ended up getting a new clutch after a few months of almost overheating. Who knows though - maybe he just got a crappy fan...
  • chev98chev98 Posts: 1
    I have a '98 S-10 4X4 with the extended cab, enhanced Vortec and the Zl-1 package. I have had regular dealer maintenance. I noticed yesterday that shifting during overdrive required higher rpms. Today I'm stuck in the garage with no reverse. I have plenty of trans. fluid, no leaks, no apparent fluid mix in the radiator, and no trouble service lights came on for it. I don't tow or even off-road with it. Any Ideas before I have it towed to my Chevy dealer?
  • the5carthe5car Posts: 26
    Well, I've heard arguments both ways for either
    just replacing the clutch or going electric...

    I've seen clutch prices anywhere from $30
    to $90 bucks. The most recommended electric
    model was a Flexalite Black Magic Model 60,
    with a price of $190 from
    The advantage (so I've been told) of the
    electric is that you can set the temperature
    to whatever you like (not that I necessarily
    would), and also anywhere from a 5-12 hp gain
    in performance. Install and wiring looks
    rather simple.

    Money's tight right now (what else is new?),
    so before I end up ruining my water pump, I'll
    probably throw another fan clutch at it.

    Thanks for your input.
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    I would like to read the explanation of that,i have 18K on my Sonoma and through two summers heard the fan come on twice.The electric fan when it comes on will cause the generator(formally called alternator} to load up and lose HP,there is no free ride in this world.So you will just switch one HP draw for another,i think you are just bored and need a project.
  • tjkirk2tjkirk2 Posts: 1
    Has anyone found a was to permanently disable the DRLs?? Dealer told me the dome light override would do it, but that resets itself when you turn the engine off.
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    You probably don't use your seat belt either.
  • I have a 2000 Chevy s-10 ZR2. I've noticed recently that while driving with the air selector turned to "Off" and all the way to "Cold" heat pours into the cabin onto my feet. It has to be the most miserable problem to drive any distance with that I can think of. I brought my truck in and Chevy claims that the truck is designed to allow airflow into the cabin even when the selector is off. This is understandable but fiery hot air?

    Just wondering if anyone has had similar problems and can offer some solution (or if you'd like to complain like me, that'd be fine too).
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    I would say your heat control is stuck on hot,if its on warranty take it to the dealer.My 99 Sonoma lets air in when everything is off,but i can control the air with the temp control.Yours is BROKEN.
  • spacecadetspacecadet Posts: 4
    I have a 97 s-10 with daytime running lamps, I found out that the only safe way to disable the D.R.L.'s is to pull the fuse in the fuse box. You should refer to your owners manual to see what number fuse it is.
  • mmace37mmace37 Posts: 2
    I can't find my oil filter! I have a used 1990, and this is the first time I am changing the oil filter, and I can't find it. If anyone can help, I'd really appreciate it.

    Thanks, Marissa
  • mmace37mmace37 Posts: 2
    But I found it! Thanks anyways!
  • I just fixed my Idle and poor gas mileage problem on my 93 S-10 Blazer. I purchased the vehical used with 123000 miles on it. I read on another web site that a common problem with the 93 S-10 4.3L W engine was the fuel lines "inside" the intake Plenum. I had taken it to several mechanics who wanted to start by replacing the Dist and other sensors. I suggested pulling the Plenum on the intake and was told that would be extremely expensive. The previous owner already had the distrubtor replaced, the fuel pump replaced, the EGR valve replaced, the map sensor and a full tune up with no change (The last mechanic wanted to replace the Catalyic converter). I gave up and pulled the plenum myself. There was puddle of gas under the fuel lines. With the plenum cover off I had my wife turn the key on and watched the fuel lines. Sure enough one had a crack in it and was spurting gas all over. GM called it a NUT KIT and it cost me $67 plus $18 for the plenum gasket. Took about an hour to replace and the truck runs like new again.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,582
    skyhawk3 posted some time ago that his dealer gave him replacement seat tilt handles. Does anyone have a part number for these? My dad's truck is a 1998 model (new interior and seats), but I think the handle is the same. Our dealer said he couldn't just order a handle, but instead would have to order something else that included the handle ($$$). TIA.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,582
    Just looked at the truck again. The end of the round metal shaft that goes back inside the seat is what broke off. The plastic handle itself is fine.
  • guru101guru101 Posts: 15
    I've encountered the first (potentialy) real problem with my 99 S-10. While driving yesterday at 50 mph in 5th gear the "service engine soon" light came on. Once it light up, it stayed on the rest of the way to work (15 miles). As soon as I started the truck to go home, the light came on again. Stayed on the whole way home. Wife took the truck to her brothers early that evening. In transit, the light goes off. The whole time the truck appeared to be running just fine.

    I checked the cap on the gas tank, which was closed tightly. I looked under the hood and couldn't see anything out of the ordinary. No apparent fluid leaks. Oil level was right on. I have no idea what may have caused this.

    When I drove the truck today it ran fine and the light didn't come on. It's out of warranty (46.7k miles) so I obviously don't want to take it to a dealer. Does anyone have any ideas? The truck is completely stock, except for a K&N air filter. It has the 2.2L 4 banger. I have changed my oil religiously at 3 month intervals.

    Oh, there's one more thing. Yesterday was the hottest day where I live (Detroit) in the two years I've owned the truck. It hit 92 (for all of you sun-belt dwellers, you missed it. Yesterday was THE day designated as "Summer" here in Michigan. Maybe you can make it up here for summer next year?). So, my theory is that the heat during the day had something to do with this, because the light went off as it was finally starting to cool off a little.
  • milanjmilanj Posts: 9
    Take to the dealer and have them put it on the computer. O2 sensor might be intermittent. I had a problem with the light coming on and staying then just as I was ready to take it to the dealer it would go off. the code for the light should be stored in the trucks computer.
  • ryanbabryanbab Posts: 7,240
    sounds exactly like my dads 92 S-10

    replaced everything you stated plus exhaust and cat (both needed to be repalced badly)

    Still ran bad. Turned out it needed a new fuel filter (changed 20K prior but something caused it to go bad)
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    I thing the best way is take to anybody with a scanner,it dosen't have to be a dealer.You need the code thats stored,any thing else is a wild guess,just throwing parts at it will cost you more in the long run.I also have a 99 4 cyl but with only 19 K ,no light yet.
  • ryanbabryanbab Posts: 7,240
    all the parts i listed needed to be replaced truck has 100K on it. Also no ses light ever came on

    It threw no codes
  • joe3891joe3891 Posts: 759
    guru101 has a code because he had a light,all ses light on stores a code.
  • tfazziotfazzio Posts: 2
    I've had a couple problems with my 99 S10.

    First, the third door began squeaking constantly. I took it to the dealer and the interior panel had come loose so they popped it back on. It happens from time to time but it's easy to fix on your own.

    Second, I always here a rattling sound from exhaust system. I took it to the dealer. Dealer replaced catalytic convertor (about 30,000 miles). It just started up again and I'm bringing it back in. Can anyone tell me why this keeps occurring?

    Third, something rattles under the hood but it is very intermittent. I have no idea what it is and dealer has not been able to figure out either.

    Last, the passenger seat recline handle sheared off. My friend has the same problem.

    Has anyone else experienced any of these issues? Any suggestions?
  • edk6edk6 Posts: 2
    I have a 93 S-10 Blazer that I originally purchased brand new. It's the 4.3L "W" motor that's on its way out after only 110,000 miles. After just replacing the water pump, intake manifold and the precious fuel injector, the local dealer and another trusted mechanic inform me that the main bearing is knocking and it's time for either a new motor or new vehicle. Talk about a disappoinment! For a vehicle that was mostly dealer maintained with regular tune-ups and oil changes and never saw "off road" terrain. Anyone else experience this with this motor? I've been reading a lot of the other articles here and yes, ball-joint replacements....I'm there twice over. Oh, and I've replaced 3 alternators on this too.

    A big hats off to the guy with the 410K miles on that vehicle. I guess some of us get lucky. I certainly expected more out of my Blazer, I don't think I'll be purchasing another one.
  • qiknisqiknis Posts: 1
    I have had both reclining handles break off. The passenger side on the first use. Now the passenger seat will not recline 10 days after the handle was replaced. The 3rd door handle cable broke. The rear seat rattled, till I ripped it out. The front passenger brake started sqealing at 28,000 miles. While replacing a flat tire the security lug split on the sides so the key would not work. Yes I know what I'm doing, I worked in a tire store in OR for 3 years. Took the truck to a tire shop and had all locking lugs removed. Then snapped a stud on a regular lug. Time for a new car. Oh yea, the DRL and automatic headlights drive me nuts.
  • davey69davey69 Posts: 2
    While I like my 2000 Chevy S-10 ZR2 I am having some problems with it. One problem is that it idles extremely rough and sounds like a diesel. But my biggest problem is the steering. It is an automatic trans and whenever I shift from say Park to Drive or Reverse to Drive or back the steering wheel "locks up". Totally can't turn the wheel. I have had a steering gear and power steering pump replaced and has not taken care of the problem. The dealership is telling me that it is because of the size of the tires that stiffness in steering is the problem. But it is not stiffness that is the problem, it is the wheel locking up. Just wondered if anyone else has ever encountered this problem. Thanks! And by the way, I had a S-10 prior to my ZR2 and HOT air coming in down by the floor board occured in both. I was told thats common in S-10's.
  • jerdavisjerdavis Posts: 1
    Hey guys, In the last 3 or so weeks I've been having some problems starting my blazer. The starter is running fine, the engine will turn over, but it won't catch. If I keep trying to start it it gurgles a bit, and eventually It'll start. Once it starts it runs perfect. I've got the 4.3l HO v6. About 110,000 miles.

    Here's a better description:
    1) turn ignition, no start
    2) turn again, engine fires, dies imediatly
    3) turn again, no start
    4) turn again, engine fires, tries to run, dies
    5) ... repeat a few more times
    6) turn again, engine fires, smooths out, runs like normal

    I've been driving it without problems in the last few weeks, it's just a PITA having to fiddle with it to get it started, and I'm concerned if it'll start at all when it gets cold again.

    Any help would be greatly apreciated!

  • schiferschifer Posts: 15
    You Blazer in a prime target for fuel pump and CPI problems.

    Fuel pumps lose thier prime and take a while to reprime. Makes it hard to start. They will soon fail. I changed my at 110,000 to avoid being stranded.

    The fuel pressure regulator on the CPI (fuel injector) unit leaks at this age. It will cause the intake plenum to go full rich and flood the engine while setting, resulting in hard starting. This leads to heavy carbon build up and must be fixed.

    To check, after the car sets a while, pull off the intake hose and open the throttle valve. If you smell gasoline, you have a problem. I replaced it myself for about $550.

    GM will replace California units with under 100,000 miles for free. Everyone else is screwed.

    With the new pump and CPI, my 94 runs great.

  • mjbwrtrmjbwrtr Posts: 172
    i have a 1993 s-10 with tahoe package...2.8 v6, five speed. i love this truck! the one problem i have with it is that when i put it in first gear and let up on the clutch, it shudders and shakes until i build some speed and go to second gear. this does not seem to be a clutch problem, and it isnt me...i have driven sticks for years. and it didnt always do this. my father in law says maybe a universal could cause that, but i have no idea. and ideas? thanks in advance guys, and keep on truckin'! its got 107k on it now, on its way to 200k, wish me luck.
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