18th Mar 2004, 00:40

I would like to update my original review of June 11,2003 in response to those who submitted comments.

In July 2003, both front wheel bearings were replaced due to dry grinding sounds coming from up front, especially the left side. I asked for my old parts back and was amazed that these units are full hub assemblies with bearings and speed/traction sensors that are non-serviceable. I then understood my invoice.

August 2003 found the Blazer back for service in the form of a much needed tune-up. I would have attacked this myself except for the fact that the steering shaft must be removed or somehow dislocated enough to remove and install the left front two spark plugs. The other plugs and the wires are not so tricky, but should not be attempted without much time, skill, and patience. The cap/rotor assembly requires specialty tools.

December 2003, the fuel gauge is registering erratic levels from full to empty to one quarter, etc. all in the span of a single half-hour trip. Otherwise, the gauge will remain at full after filling, then not budge for three or four days until it spontaneously decides to register just above empty. The remedy the dealer suggested will likely involve dropping the fuel tank and replacing the sending unit. For now I simply fuel up twice a week.

January 2004 found me installing a fresh Delco battery on a Sunday afternoon with a serious wind chill factor. I do not believe the battery had frozen as it was not swollen, nor had the fluid within stiffened.

March 2004, the engine light came on and the transmission went into 'limp mode'. Upon scanning, hard codes P0740 and P0753 were rendered and the system cleared. These codes pertain to circuits controlling the torque converter clutch and shift pattern actuation. Under warranty of the new transmission, the internal solenoid relay bank was replaced.

This Blazer is the newest and most expensive vehicle we have ever purchased. Aside from the usual sound of a teapot whistling when the computer climate control is functioning, or the front left corner of the cab creaking like a loose body mount, this vehicle has also been one of the most challenging. I will not even mention trade-in value. Yikes!

Comment #1, my wife also loves the 'autotrac' system.

Comment #2, when your transmission is replaced, be sure to have a variable flow fluid cooler installed. This will not only rid unwanted excess heat, but will restrict flow into the cooler until operating temperature is reached.