Problems With Chevy TrailBlazers

by Dennis Hartman
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Image by, courtesy of Kyle May

The TrailBlazer was a mid-size SUV produced by American automaker General Motors through its Chevrolet division. The TrailBlazer was produced between 2002 and 2009. From 1999 to 2002 the TrailBlazer name was used as a high-end version of the Chevy Blazer SUV. Despite generally positive feedback and a good reliability rating, the TrailBlazer has been subject to several common problems that owners and potential buyers should be aware of.

Electrical Problems

Some of the most common problems with the TrailBlazer involve the vehicle's electrical system and accessories. Many drivers have experienced problems with the dashboard gauges, including the fuel gauge, speedometer and "check engine" warning light. Additional electrical problems include power automatic door locks and windows that fail to work or operate intermittently. These problems can be difficult to diagnose as they can result from anything from a faulty battery to problems with the wiring or other electrical components.

Climate Control

The air conditioning and heating systems are another cause of problems for many TrailBlazers. In some cases these problems are related to electrical issues such as blower fan motors that fail to work properly. This problem can affect either the front air vents or those positioned in the rear seating area, or both. Some drivers have complained that the air conditioner causes the TrailBlazer to lose significant power and in some instances stall completely.


The TrailBlazer has been involved in numerous recalls from General Motors to address known issues. In 2005 a problem with power steering hoses led to the recall of more than 125,000 vehicles. That same year GM recalled 286,000 vehicles due to an electrical problem that affected turn signals. This followed a similar problem in 2004 that caused more than 800,000 vehicles to be recalled for dealers to fix faulty brake light components. A 2002 recall addressed a problem with the fuel filter that could lead to difficulty in starting the vehicle.

Safety Recalls

The TrailBlazer has also been the subject of several recalls that dealt specifically with the vehicle's safety equipment. In 2006 nearly 800 vehicles were recalled and repurchased by GM because of a problem with the passenger seat airbag sensors. A 2005 recall was enacted to deal with windshields that had been improperly mounted on some 17,000 vehicles. In 2002 more than 133,000 vehicles were recalled because of another airbag problem that could cause injury when the airbag was deployed. A 2004 recall of 261,000 vehicles including some early TrailBlazers addressed faulty seat belt components that could prevent them from working properly in a crash.

General Problems

Another group of problems with the Chevy TrailBlazer involve general shortcomings as cited by drivers and automotive critics. Among these is the fact that the TrailBlazer received minimal updates from Chevy during the course of its production, leading its design to seem outdated. The vehicle's handling has also come under fire as too imprecise. The quality of interior materials has also been a cause for complaint. In the mid-2000s Chevy revealed that the TrailBlazer would not be produced beyond the 2009 model year.

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