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Isuzu Trooper



  • bawbcatbawbcat Posts: 118
    I finally took my first road trip in my 98 Trooper with perf pkg. I was impressed with how smooth and quiet the Trooper is a highway speeds. It also has good power at speed even though it lacks low-end grunt compared to my old 89 Cherokee with 4.0L I6. The Trooper feels much stronger above 50 MPH. I also like the auto tranny a lot. Seems to be in the right gear almost all the time, even when accelerating or going uphill. My only real gripe is that the seats are too hard IMHO. My bum falls asleep within an hour.

    A couple questions:

    - (Probably a dumb one) Is there a way to turn on the interior lights other than reaching into the back seat and pressing on the dome? I can't find another switch.

    - What is supposed to be illuminated on the drivers door? On mine, all I see is a very faint "Auto" on the one window switch. Everything else is dark. Just curious if this is normal.

    - Intake noise is pretty noticible at low RPM. Is that a characteristic of the 3.5L engine, or is it something I should look into?
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    - (Probably a dumb one) Is there a way to turn on the interior lights other than reaching into the back seat and pressing on the dome? I can't find another switch.

    Nope I usually turn on the map lights in the front or open a door.

    - What is supposed to be illuminated on the drivers door? On mine, all I see is a very faint "Auto" on the one window switch. Everything else is dark. Just curious if this is normal.

    Yep all is normal.

    - Intake noise is pretty noticible at low RPM. Is that a characteristic of the 3.5L engine, or is it something I should look into?

    Definitely normal, I've been trying to figure it out from my Rodeo to my Trooper, I think it's a very low 1st gear or the fan clutch engaging.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    That guy was lucky that it was only like 5-10mph that it happened at, those side steps would have really hurt the other car had it been at speed, what they did was just push the car over sideways and up to the door. If you look at the pics, the black marks on the 1/4 are the mirror of his car smudging. that may be able to be rubbed out.

    I contacted his insurance company and they had already alerted them, so that is a good thing. I'm definitely not going to go through my insurance cause I don't want to get rated. I'll decline a rental cause I have 2 cars and it's not a big deal.

    Mor details as events warrant.

  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    over 5 years, 2 Troopers, and 90k miles, I've not measured a difference in fuel economy that's traceable to the A/C being on or off. Just my experience...
  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    The window sticker on our 98 Trooper with auto trans definitely says the trans is made in France. I'm pretty sure the window sticker on our previous Troop (a '96) said the same.
  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    Long story short: 98 Troop rear-ended and suffered no visible damage.

    Driving our 98 Trooper last weekend, doing 50 mph or so. Guy in front of me gets cut off and slams on brakes. I was paying attention and leaving enough distance ahead, so the Troop needed only moderate brake pressure. Unfortunately, the kid in the 1990 Jeep Cherokee was looking away at the wrong time and bumped/banged into the Troop. It was a pretty loud bang, and I'd estimate he was doing at least 10 mph more than me at impact.

    The amazing thing was, I saw absolutely NO damage. This was hard to believe, but I looked more closely once I got home and still found nothing. I took down the kid's info just in case I decided to file a police report, which I am not going to do.

    As soon as he hit me, I figured 'oh great, he bumped the spare tire and the whole rear door probably caved in.' Here's what seems to have happened: Cherokee has 2 rubber bumper guards that protrude 3-4" beyond the bumper. These guards hit my Trooper's rear bumper, and the Cherokee did not contact the spare tire.

    I looked long and hard to see whether the rear bumper was sagging or anything, but I think it's fine. It already has plenty of scratches and scuffs, but I could not find any new ones caused by this accident.

    Ironically, this incident occurred about 4 miles north on the same street on which my previous Trooper, a '96 S, was totalled about 3 years ago.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Sounds like you lucked out (this time), Bluedevils. Maybe you need to find a different route home!

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  • wildbucwildbuc Posts: 88
    Hi folks, I was traveling down the interstate the other day and ran over something in the road which cut my rear right tire. I pulled over onto the soft wet ground on the shoulder and attempted to change the tire. After about 30 minutes I was back on the road, but it was a close call. Here's what I learned:

    1. You should have some kind of ground plate to go under the jack. On wet ground with the jack sinking I had to work fast. I came within 1/8th inch of not getting the Trooper high enough to change the tire.

    2. Check the tire pressure of the spare. Mine was 18 lbs., enough to get me going but if it has been less I would have been in a heap of trouble.

    3. A pipe extension for the lug wrench would have made changing the lug nuts much easier--and not run the risk of injuring your back.

    4. Some kind of signaling device to warn other cars would have been helpful. Most cars passing by me were only 3 feet away.

    5. A ground cloth would be helpful also. I used an old blanket to get beneath the rear wheels to position the jack.

    Hope some of you folks learn from my mistakes. From now on, I am carrying all the essentials.
  • What sort of thing was in the road to tough that it could cut your tire?
  • A while ago someone posted that the Trooper built in roof rack mounting holes (that is where the Overlander brackets bolt down) would eventually crack.

    Please elaborate on the crack. Were the cracks caused by "up down", "for aft", "side to side" forces?

    I have the Thule crossbars bolted direct to the three positions of Overlander brackets with no problems.

    I'm about to change the roof rack configuration to a pair of "for aft" running rails each bolted to three Overlander brackets. The reason is to be able to share the crossbars with our other car by using the Thule OEM rack to Thule crossbar attachment. The Thule attaching part will allow quick removal of the crossbars. The Thule attachments will allow me to adjust the distance between crossbars too.

    I am concerned that the "for aft" bars bolted tightly to the Overlander racks will set up huge stress when the bars expand and contract.

    Candidates for "for aft" bars are:

    1.) THule bars 78"



    Where the last two would allow thermal movement the first with a bolt through it would not. I am leaning toward the stainless strut channel for lowest thermal expansion and greatest ease of slip mounting with good malability so it would bend not break (if you had an aluminum coat hanger how many times could you bend it before it breaks compared to a steel hanger?)

    Thank You for your help in avoiding stress cracks in roof racks.

  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    One essential item offroad is a 2x2 piece of 3/4" plywood...just for the reason you said, something level and flat to put the jack on, and it disperses the weight so it won't sink in soft ground (it will sink by itself in soft asphalt).

    I use a rubbermaid container from target. I usually have a first aid kit, flashlight, portable shovel, fix-a-flat, gloves, duct tape, raincoat, etc.. This is my standard offroad box, but I usually just leave it in back with a blanket and plywood square.

    Don't forget about Isuzu Roadside Assistance, or AAA for flat changes.
  • pugger1pugger1 Posts: 42
    Thanks for the heads up on the footrests. Do you have the 800 number that I cound call for the ski rack?

  • wildbucwildbuc Posts: 88
    Boxtrooper, I am not sure what it was that cut my tire. I saw it on the road only seconds before hitting it. It appeared to be some kind of metal object--perhaps a pair of long pliars. My front wheel hit it and then it hit the rear tire puncturing it. It was the first such occurrence in over 35 years of driving. Luckily, there was space to pull over on the shoulder. I can be thankful this did not occur in heavy traffic.
  • So, Wildbuc, how did the Troop handle with a blowout?
  • bawbcatbawbcat Posts: 118
    Thanks for the answers to my questions. I can't believe that there isn't another way to turn on the interior lights. That is a very strange omission.

    Regarding the intake noise, what I hear is not fan or transmission noise. It just sounds like air being sucked in through the intake. Think of Darth Vader inhaling continuously. :) I only really notice it when accelerating from a stop or driving slowly in 1st gear.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    it is a good thing you weren't in an might have flipped and exploded into flames! Just kidding, seriously though, I am curious to find out if there was any handling issues too?
  • kevtomkevtom Posts: 11
    What year is your Trooper? I have an 02 and thought that there was not a roof bar or rail system for this year. If you do have an 02, I'd be interested to know how you got something to work.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Every Trooper from '92->'02 has the same roof. Stock up til '98 had a roof option so I bet there are ones to fit the '98->02

  • I had posted a week or so ago about the outside temp surging while stopped at a light. Someone suggested movinng the tempsensor, which is located behind the grill to an area that would get more airflow. Well, I did it (kinda), and it worked (kinda) - let me explain...

    The wires on the sensor are too short to really move anywhere. So what I did is pulled the sensor out of the mounting bracket and turned it around so that it wasn't blocked by the mounting bracket from circulating air. (if you remove your grill and take a look you will see what I mean.

    the results...
    the temp still surges at a stand still but it seems to surge more slowly and recover more quickly. If I get courageous, I might splice in additional wire so that I can move the sensor to a more ideal location.
  • wildbucwildbuc Posts: 88
    I was traveling about 65 mph when the blowout occurred on the left rear tire. Upon hearing the sound, I immediately applied the breaks and made a smooth controlled stop. There was no problem whatsoever in controlling the vehicle. The Trooper did not yaw or pitch in any way.

    I was concerned that my wheel rim would be bent, but later found this was not the case. The wheel was as round as could be. I was quick to get off the road, however.
  • The 92-02 Trooper roofs have a black plastic covered stainless steel trim in the rain gutter. There are three places on each side with two 6mm threaded holes each. The holes are under paint and under tape. The front set is above the front windows. The rear set is above the rear windows and the middle set is midway between them. The mounding is snapped down and can be removed by carefully evenly pulling up. The mounding end caps break easy, but you cannot see them from standing next to the Trooper unless you are 6'5" and look for them.

    I suspect that these holes are part of the factory process for robots carrying the unfitted body around for welding and dunking in treatement tanks etc.. sells their own made bracket for their own made expedition roof rack. The brackets can be had alone for $39 or so they are part number T100. I do not want a full time expedition roof rack (parachute) on my roof, so I bought just the brackets. There is a very nice expedition roof rack from ECB find it from Paison's web site.

    T100 brackets and three Thule 1.25" x 7/8" x 50" crossbars make up the rack I have now. Each crossbar was drilled half way through using a carbide bit starting with a very small size and going through 3 more sizes up to 5/16" to make a nice round hole in one side of the Thule bar near each end. The Thule bars being only 50" is ideal because the T100 brackets are near enough to the ends of the Thule bars to hold a nut on the inside of the bar with a needle nose pliers. The finished roof rack only shows the head of the bolt onder the T100 bracket and the Thule crossbar caps fit perfectly. The look is clean.

    I am contemplating changing the roof rack system to allow moveable crossbars by using the Thule 415 crossbars to OEM roof rack brackets. Thule claims these are sturdy and I went to REI to measure them. They can clamp to bars from about 3/4" x 3/4" to 40mm x 40mm. The 415 are decently strong, enough to hold anything I would put on the roof. "Only a real Thule would put that much stuff on the roof."

    Here is what I will do:

    Option 1.) Thule cross bars 78" mounted front to back by drilling the T100 7/16 mounting hole out to 1/2" and get stainless square nuts to slide inside the Thule bars then bolt down as before.

    Option2.) Use either aluminum or stainless strut channel and their particular mounting arangements.

    Option 3.) Use two on each side of stainless 3/4" x 3/4" square tube because it had rounded corners and will fill up the T100 mounting surface. Between the two 3/4"x3/4" bars at each T100 bracket bolt into both bars horizontally a solid piece of stainless with a tapped 7/16" hole in the center and bolt these on. This would provide a boltable slot all the way down the bars for easy homemade expediton rack or whatever I would want to bolt up there. The Thule 415 brackets would clamp nicely to the resulting 3/4" x 2" parallel bars and it would be quite strong.

    Option 3a.) Same thing, but pay to make custom stainless brackets for bolting down the 3/4"x3/4" bars next to each other. Would anyone be interested in buying such custom brackets for bolting down side by side two 3/4"x3/4" square stainless bars with a maximum dimension of 2.25"x2.25"x3x4" such that they could be used one on top of each T100 bracket and also be used opposite each other to clamp to the 3/4"x3/4" bars away from the T100 brackets?

    Thank You


  • bsmart1bsmart1 Posts: 377
    That noise you describe is not uncommon. I hear it on my 99' Trooper as well, but only on cool mornings when 1st starting up. It won't do it later in the day if the outside air temp is quite warm. Don't really know the reason for this, sorta strange. In the morning it seems to disappear once the engine warms up good. I don't notice it after a few minutes, if say I stop at a stop light or sign and ease away from it. The noise isn't there. It may be some kind of designed air bypass or something to help the engine be efficient at cooler temperatures. Maybe the air pump doing its thing to keep NOX gasses down.
  • sdc2sdc2 Posts: 780
    When my intake manifold gasket was leaking I could clearly hear a hissing noise from the engine with the hood up. Might be worth a look...
  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    Where exactly do you position the jack when changing a front or rear Trooper tire? I've been lazy and never read up on this in the owners manual.
  • kevtomkevtom Posts: 11
    Very interesting. I knew the holes were there but whenever I have looked for rails from either Isuzu, Thule, or Yakima I did not find any to fit. Isuzu only sales the ski mount, Thule and Yakima only had mounts that clipped in the door (which I don't want). Thule now lists a product called a Top Track that permanently mounts to the roof but don't know if it will fit the pre-drilled holes. I did not know, as you and Paisan pointed out, that the 92-02 had the same roof.

    You mention OEM roof rack brackets. Is that from Thule? So following your suggestions above, I'll be able to have a system to mount a gear basket or even a canoe?? Excuse my amazement but I've had my Trooper since July and have had NO success in finding roof options.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I use the rear axle near where the shocks mount for jacking the rear and the lower control arm for jacking the front. Not sure if they are the "proper" places to jack it but that works for me. I also carry a small hydrolic floor jack which is easier to jack with than the stocker. Since I've gotten the side rails welded to the frame, I think I'll use them to jack from now on as well.

    Roof bars aren't easy to find but they are out there. I bet if we could figure out the part # of the '92-98 Roof rack you could order it from Isuzu parts.

  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    For the front there are actually 3" circular imprints on the frame about 2' behind the front wheels. It seems like a weird place to jack from, but I believe that is the "official" spot.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Doesn't allow my OEM jack to lift from the frame :( I never actually looked in the book for the official jack points.

  • sdc2sdc2 Posts: 780
    One of the "official" jacking points is actually the front skidplate, according to the manual. I tried it once, and bent the skidplate. So I don't use that one anymore...
  • I did more measure and calculate. The pair of 3/4" square bars with 1/2 inch between for the 7/16 bolt will make the width of the twin bar assembly 2 inches. The Thule brackets that clamp to OEM roof racks have a flat bottom of 40mm = 1.57 inches. So I want it a little narrower.

    A 1/2 X 1 inch stainless .065 tube is .37 lb. per foot. Twin bars per side 6.5 feet long needs 26 feet or a total added weight on top of 26*.37 9.62 lb. Twin solid 6063-T6 aluminum bars 1/2 x 1 would add about 15.5 lb. up on top. Or about the same as one 78" Thule bar front to back on each side.

    I have thought of a less expensive way to make the brackets to bolt it down too. Use 3/16 thick stainless 316 sheet stock cut in a 2.5 inch disc shape using put a 7/16 hole in the center and fold the edges down such that a 1.5 inch space in between them. Use a low profile bolt head to bolt down directly on the Overlander brackets. I have a request for quote pending for these little parts to be made accurately in a machine shop. The diameter of the disc bracket would cause side bent down about 1/2 inch so one of the disc bracket could go over and one could go under the twin bars to securely clamp anything. I specified additional holes 1/5 inches apart centered on the 7/16 hole and lined up with the gap between the twin bars. These extra holes would allow mounting Thule cross bars direct to the twin bars without need of buying the Thule OEM brackets using a 1.5 inch square u-bolt. The Thule bars are 1.25 wide and the u-bolt would be a close fit. Leave the u-bolt attached to the Thule Cross bars when removing and install quickly with the center 7/16 bolt and a cam nut like bicycle seat posts use.
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