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Isuzu Trooper



  • bsmart1bsmart1 Posts: 377
    Summer is here and it's reaching into the mid 90's here in the mid-South. With the heat comes newly identified problems, especially with cooling systems. Anyone else had this problem? If I sit in traffic for 15 to 20 minutes my 97' Trooper starts heating up big time. The needle has not gotten to the H yet but its gotten too close for comfort. Luckily, I've been able to get the vehicle moving enough to get air across the radiator and bring the temperature down before it gets to H. This doesn't seem right to me. The fan should pull enough air across the radiator when parked to prevent this. Right?? This is my first summer with this Trooper, so I don't have a history to reflect on. Any help out there would be appreciated. The radiator is full of coolant and the radiator fins are clear of debris. The fan is turning but looks slow to me. And the thermostat appears to be working during normal driving.
    Another question. Has anyone else experienced a rattling noise coming from under their Trooper, sounding like a loose clamp on a pipe or something? Happy Motoring (Troopering) :) !!!
  • gpm5gpm5 Posts: 785
    I'd check/replace the thermostat and make sure the water pump/belt is working properly.
  • breakorbreakor Posts: 398
    No overheating in my 1999 Trooper even at 110+, although I wasn't stopped in traffic very long.

    In addition to the above suggestions, how did the coolant look? A good flush and refill might be all that is needed. With a used car you just never know what the prior owner did. Maybe he did the change at 30k mis. maybe not. I know I have inspected used cars before where it looked like the coolant came straight out of a muddy wash.

    Could also be the fan is the source of the problem. If you have a clutch activating the fan maybe it is slipping. I had that problem once many years ago on a Toyota .

    It could also be that the prior owner removed the shroud around the radiator. That will greatly reduce the cooling effectiveness of the radiator during idling conditions.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I'd say either the thermostat or the fan clutch is not working. Do the T-stat first, then check the fan. I had my 2K trooper in 100+ degree temps in NYC bumper to bumper traffic, never overheated once. Same goes for towing as well.

  • conman2000conman2000 Posts: 158
    The newer cargo mats from Isuzu have the holes cut in them already for the Trooper and Rodeo. Will take a pic tomorrow and have Paisan post it at his site.


    P.S. No over heating in my new Trooper but my 88 Isuzu Pickup did have a high reading on it's temp. but no over heating.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I had an old Nissan Stanza that had an overheating problem. I had to crank the heat when stuck in traffic on hot summer days. $100 and a new thermostat fixed the problem right quick.

    I hope it is that simple for you.
  • pinoy99pinoy99 Posts: 79
    Try going thru a self service power wash and hose down the radiator fins thoroughly;if the truck went offroading in the mud and not washed down properly, then the fins could be clogged tho not easily visible which causes hot(er) running while idling(hot weather,stuck in traffic).
  • sdc2sdc2 Posts: 780
    Thanks for the info, I have been planning on doing the tranny fluid exchange as you described, but have been wavering between 30K and 50K for an just helped me make up my mind.
  • 93trooper93trooper Posts: 4
    I have a 93 Trooper and just recently I noticed swinging in the oil pressure when i come to a stop. At normal engine speeds, it runs steady at 40-45, but drops to about 12-15 at a stop. I brought it into the Isuzu dealer and they showed me the write up that said that is normal for 93 troopers and Rodeo's. This is the first I've seen it happen since I bought the car in 1993. Has anyone else had this problem? Should I be more concerned then the dealer is?

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I have the same thing on my '88 Subaru. Unfortunately on my '00 Trooper there is no oil pressure guage so I can't verify how it acts.

  • offroaderoffroader Posts: 23
    On my '99 w/TOD w/11,000 miles, I did the TOD transfer case and both differentials last weekend. The t-case uses 2 qts. of ATF. I used Mobil 1 synthetic even thopugh the cost is $6/qt. as opposed to $2/qt. for standard Dexron III ATF. The color of the old fluid was darker than new fluid, but this is normal.

    I replaced the front & rear diff. gear oil also. I used Mobil 1 75W-90 synthetic (about $8/qt.). Although the service manual calls for 80W-90 for the temp. range that I drive, I believe the
    Mobil 1 will do the job. The label on the bottle says it "exceeds" all SAE etc. tests, while other brands of regular mineral gear oil says it "meets or exceeds" for the same tests. Any thoughts?

    You'll notice that the drain plugs on both diffs. have a magnet in them to attract small metal shavings - they work as planned and mine had some junk attracted to them. Make sure you clean these off thoroughly before re-installing the drain plug.

    I did my transmission oil at about 8,000 miles. I used Valvoline ATF, not Mobil 1, but I plan to change it again at 20K+/- miles. I will use Mobil 1 at that time.

    As you can see, I am very conservative when it comes to oil changes and maintenance. I tend to change it early and often, esp. the first "break-in" oil.

    Clean gears are happy gears.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    That is a very agressive change schedule, good thing you didn't buy an MDX, they require the diffys (all 3 of them) be changed at 7500. Did you make sure to add LSD fluid to the rear?

  • offroaderoffroader Posts: 23
    Mobil 1 synthetic gear oil supposedly is already equipped with limited slip additive - at least that's what the bottle says.

    Here's some quotes:

    "Eases gear shifting and prevents chattering in limited slip differentials".

    "...race proven 100% synthetic product that outperforms all conventional extreme pressure type gear lubricants."

    "Formulated to exceed the most severe performance requirements of all auto and truck rear axles."

    "Exceeds performance requirements of API Service GL-5, Mack GO-G/S."

    That ought to do it.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Not sure, but I'd check it out with Mobil just to verify. Hate to see the LSD get messed up. I'm thinking of going to synthetics on my Truck. Have to find a good shop that will do the changes properly.

  • erinsquarederinsquared Posts: 178
    I use synthetic fluids in my differentials and engine in addition to the best oil filter I can find. Just an extra measure of insurance for disaster and allows me to feel comfortable about increasing my oil change intervals to 5k miles. On another note, I notice that in most comparison's I have ever read about the Trooper, it is placed in the $30-45k priced vehicles and it usually does not fare well in the comparison (vs. Navigators, Tahoes, Mercedes, and Landcruisers). I think this is based on MSRP, but the reality is that most of us are getting these trucks in the $24-28k price range (after 6-7k in man. discounts). If Isuzu would drop the discounts and just mark the MSRP in the mid 20's, we would see more accurate comparisons against models that sell for the same price but offer much less. Imagine a comparison against the Explorer, Escape, Pathfinder, Xterra, etc.. I think Isuzu is missing the free publicity that it could get by winning these more appropriate comparisons.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    GM doesn't want the Trooper to cut into Trailblazer and Envoy sales. After 2002 it will be a Yukon/Tahoe clone so it won't matter much.
    :( Although I agree with you on the poor marketing of the Trooper.

  • bsmart1bsmart1 Posts: 377
    The story continues on the overheating in my 97' Trooper. I did the change out of the T-stat ($25part) and the problem still exists. I verified the new T-stat was set for 170F prior to installing it and it was. I checked the operation of the old one I took out, and it was set to the right temperature and was working fine. Side note, the T-stat is not easy to find, finally found one at O-Rileys auto parts. It does not come with a gasket, nor is a pre-cut gasket available. It was a trick cutting the gasket from stock material, especially when you don't have the right tools to do so. After further testing I've decided the problem is in the radiator fan clutch assembly. I mentioned before that it seemed to be turning too slow. I tested it at a cold start yesterday and found that it turns fast when cold for a few minutes then slows down. It never speeds up again after the engine has heated up to normal temperature. There's a temperature coil built in that is supposed to adjust the clutch if it gets hot and cause the fan to re-engage. That's not happening now and I've got a clutch assembly on order. Cost new $147 from St. Charles. These Troopers aren't cheap to work on for sure. When I get it installed, I'll let you know the results. By the way, the shroud is in place and the radiator fins are clear (can see light through them). Outdoor temps here yesterday reached 100F. Had to turn the heat on yesterday afternoon to keep the Trooper engine from overheating...air out the ducts registered 175F. This is one hot truck. Not so Happy Trooping!! :-)
  • raydahsraydahs Posts: 449
    You are correct in your analogy of the testing. Here are some quotes from the 99 SUV Edmunds comparison tests:

    "To be eligible for our test, the SUV in question had to have four-wheel drive and a cargo area of at least 90 cubic feet. We used cargo capacity as our defining standard, because it seemed that in order to fulfill the "utility" side of the full-size moniker, the trucks should be capable of hauling more than a garden-variety Ford Explorer or Chevrolet Blazer. As strange as it may seem, a relatively small vehicle like the Isuzu Trooper made it into the test"

    "The truth is that the Trooper would probably dominate a comparison of midsized sport-utes like the Explorer, Blazer, Montero Sport, and Nissan Pathfinder, and, in reality, that is the market against which the Trooper is most often shopped. Nevertheless, the Trooper fit our criteria, so we pitted it against the big boys."

    "Normal-sized families looking for a medium-to-large vehicle for family trips or running around town will not be disappointed with this Isuzu. In fact, its deficiencies in the test, namely its smaller size and less-powerful engine, could spell real-life gains -- especially when it comes to driving on crowded streets and paying for gas. Our Trooper's price tag is one additional feature that could move it up the list for some families. Our Trooper's sticker was $10,000 lower than anything else in the test, and $10,000 could pay for a lot of nice salmon steaks on those camping trips."
  • breakorbreakor Posts: 398
    I forgot to mention that my cure for the bad fan clutch in the Toyota (not the temperature sensing unit which was located at the radiator by the way) was a few good shots of WD-40 on a cold, non-running vehicle.

    Granted this is unlikely to work for you but for $.10 in material it might be worth trying.
  • Hi,

    I've been lurking here for a few days, reading the postings, and I have to say that you all are a loyal group. Nothing like what you would read from the Explorer or Grand Cherokee owners.

    I live in Long Island and I want to buy a 2001 LS with a sunroof. Does anyone know what I should pay at this point. Also, the only LS I can find is with the Anniversary package. That package seems overpriced.

    How can I locate the car I want and how can I find out what to pay?


  • If you are on Long island then I think Paisan is your man. I am sure he will be posting to your question any time now!
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Conway got a decent deal in LI on an LS w/moonroof. You won't find an Anniversary Edition w/factory Moonroof since the factory doesn't make em. If you want the best deal in the NY area, contact Mark Jerrick @ Staten Island Subaru/Isuzu @ 718-979-9595. He'll give you an honest out the door price w/o any BS, whatever he quotes you is the price you'll pay. I can get the # of a decent dealer in LI if you don't want to travel out to Staten Island for it. The SI dealer will have to most likely order it, but it's worth the wait.

  • tistevetisteve Posts: 142
    Just an update on Trooper prices here in SE VA. I have three different dealers offering an '01 Trooper S 4x4 w/auto for $19,990 plus $550 dest charge and some have $350 processing fee. So, under $21,000 not including TT&L. Note though that you can't get any of the special financing from Isuzu at these prices. Dealer said to add $4,000 to the price in order to use the Isuzu financing.
    My wife and I are days away from grabbing one, just need to find the color we want and finalize her company car allowance to see if we can swing it. Test drove another one last night. What a nice, solid feeling truck. With all the standard features this truck comes with, I'm amazed it isn't selling well. They also sell Suzuki's and Mazda Tributes at same dealership. Those vehicles cost a few grand more and don't have half the standard features. And nowhere near the same interior room.
    By the way, he said the Axiom wasn't moving like they had hoped, only about two a month.
    Paisan, a few posts back you mentioned doing the Rancho shock and OME springs for less than $450 (I think). Was that for the shocks and the springs? Did you install yourself? I've done an add-a-leaf on a Suzuki I used to own, would you recommend this as a DIY job for a somewhat capable person, or is it a shop job?
    Thanks everyone for all the great Trooper info, hope to be one of you soon!
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I don't think it's that hard, but I bought the springs for like $120 and the shocks for $50 something each. So that's about $320 + $150 for my local shop to install them for me. Handles much better and rides great too. The OMEs helped with a 5000lb trailer I towed recently.

  • raydahsraydahs Posts: 449
    Here's a link for the shocks w/free shipping.

    Here's one for the springs

    Others may have it cheaper, but here's a starting point....Good Luck!

  • boxtrooperboxtrooper Posts: 843

    Did your OME springs add some lift to the rear of your Trooper? How much?
    Did you need to crank the front spring bars to match? How much?

    I have 2 year old Tokico shocks on my 1995 Trooper now. Should I get the Rancho9000 shocks with it? Would OME shocks be a better match to the springs?

    I want to stay as close to original height as possible so my Trooper and its permanent roof rack (3x Thule bars on Overlander brackets adds 2.5 inches to overall height) can fit into parking garages. I went with 255/70/16 tires instead of 265/75/16 tires also for the height reason, plus MPG in town.

    I have been thinking about getting the OME springs for a while now, and I want to be able to give very specific instructions to my mechanic ( in Raleigh NC they are great with Troopers and less expensive than a dealer)

    Thank You
  • bsmart1bsmart1 Posts: 377
    Those looking for GREAT prices on Troopers should check out Ebay. They have some 2000 and 2001 models occasionally with low miles, priced way below $20000. I believe there is one or two posted right now!!
  • sdc2sdc2 Posts: 780
    ...will add about 1.5 inches to your Trooper, a little less if you carry a lot of heavy stuff around all the time...
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Mine so far with the hitch, rear bar, and my usual load of tools and stuff gives me about a 1" lift after about 10K miles. I cranked the front bars 4 turns and it sits slightly higher in the rear compared to the front. I went with the rancho 9000 shocks because they were gas and were adjustable. The OME shocks are nice, but I don't think they give you the range that the ranchos do. Normal driving I leave em on 3/3 or 2/2 when I put a trailer on I go to 3/5+ for offroading I go with 5/5.

  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    The best price I found for the OME shocks was $65 each. N65 front, N15 rear. The N15's were back-ordered and some came in from Australia at the end of June. I ordered from I have had problems with shipping, they got my address wrong. UPS corrected the address, my lights came in, but the shocks are still MIA, so I can't give any performance results.
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