1995 Chevrolet S-10 LS 4.3L TBI Vortec V6 from North America
I bought this car in March of 2008 during my freshman year of college. I had looked at numerous different trucks and settled on this one because it got the best gas mileage and had a manual transmission. When the sale price, tax, plate, title, and all fees were summed together, the cost was $2900.
It is now December 26th, 2008, and I've put around 5000 miles on the truck.
** Speakers are blown. I never replaced them because I can't justify investing money in this POS!
** The gas tank rusted out in the Summer.
There is a plastic shield on the front of the tank that holds moisture and salt next to it. I installed a new tank myself and threw the plastic shield in the garbage. Words cannot describe the blood, sweat, tears, and anguish that were associated with trying to install a new tank by myself.
New tank: $70
New fill tube hose: $5
New wires for fuel pump ground: $2
Not an expensive do it yourself, but a HUGE PAIN IN THE ASS if you don't remove the truck bed.
** New fuel lines and filter from tank.
While replacing the gas tank, I noticed that the sending and return fuel lines were quite rusted out. I called the dealer and bought the lines from the tank up to where the fuel filter was mounted on the frame rail. The lines beyond that point were discontinued so I left the originals in place.
There is a third line that serves to return vapor to a charcoal canister mounted by the tank. This was also badly rusted. I chose to remove the charcoal canister and the vapor return line from the car because they are not necessary to proper vehicle function.
Sending line: $55
Return line: $50
Fuel filter: $15.
** New Motor mounts
The old ones disintegrated/teared/smushed down. Initially it only caused unpleasant vibrations in the cab under acceleration. Finally it caused the cooling fan to hit the fan shroud and it would no longer turn.
Bought new OEM mounts myself, had a local shop install them. 3.5 hours of labor, nearly impossible to do it yourself without a lift.
Pair of mounts: $65
** New transmission mount
I figured I might as well replace this along with the motor mounts. I installed a polyurethane one from energy suspension. I was able to do this myself.
** New brake lines
All lines. the old ones were about two months away from complete disintegration. Had a local shop do this. They did a good job and coated the lines with some kind of red stuff. ~$350
** Wipers don't work very well. They make an ear bleeding screeching sound, fail to contact the entire windshield, and smear ice and moisture instead of wiping it away. I've tried new wiper blades and adjustment of the wipers. I'm still trying to a find a solution and have simply dealt with in in the mean time.
** O2 sensor is going bad, I get an occasional check engine light. I can't replace it myself because the last one was welded into the exhaust pipe. Screw it for now!
** Oil cooler lines
These are notorious for rupturing or leaking. The last thing I want is a spun bearing because these go out on the highway. I plan on deleting them at my next oil change. This is an easy do it yourself that requires a basic socket set and set or torx (star) bits. There are how to articles on the Internet for free.
There is a faint rust emulsion in my coolant. I hope I can get by with a flush out.
** Exhaust system
A heat shield on the muffler was making a rattling noise. I tore it off, it helped. Still a little bit of rattling. There is a small leak at a three bolt triangle flanger where the catalytic converter bolts to the muffler and back. The pipes are mostly constructed of a higher quality stainless steel that has held up well over thirteen years.
A complete piece of garbage. In only 5000 miles I've almost bought the car a second time in repair costs.
I was a fool and sided with this piece of junk over a better built full size truck because I was freaked out by $4.00/gallon gas.
I live in Michigan, and it is quite apparent that our salted roads and snowy winters bring the pain to a thirteen year old car.
The few good points.
Decent gas mileage: 17+ with mostly city.
Good engine: Starts every time, decent power for the size of the truck. 139000 miles on original plugs and wires.
Throttle body injection is reliable and easy to repair.
My only beef with the 4.3 is that it vibrates excessively at higher rpms. This is inherent to the design of the engine. New motor mounts helped.
New clutch before I bought it. Clutch pedal feels solid, transmission works well, sometimes it is hesitant to go into reverse, clutch pedal has to be depressed for six seconds.
Nice looking truck with a bright red paint scheme.
Interior is comfy.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 26th December, 2008
11th Jan 2009, 16:41
It looks like you are not a car guy, because I've owned a 1991 S10 Blazer for a while now, and with two fender benders it still runs like a beauty. I drive a 20 mile commute to work, and never had a problem.
15th Jan 2009, 01:10
These trucks can be a pain, especially the early 1994-1997 series of that generation. I had a '96 GMC Sonoma (same truck, different name) and was constantly repairing things.
Problems are listed as follows:
Timing belt - $669 (bent valves, cost includes labor)
Alternator - rebuilt for $100.
Master brake cylinder.
Air conditioner and heater unit blown.
Drive line rebuilt - $177.
O2 sensors went bad.
Brakes were terrible, even after replacing cylinder.
This does not include other "little odds and ends" that wind up costing a good bit. I was nickel and dimed with this truck. After getting rid of this piece of crap I bought a 1987 Nissan Maxima. I NEVER had a problem with Nissan.
Unfortunately, a 16-year old totaled my car and now I'm back in a S-10, a 1999. This time has been better. The only repairs thus far have been for the slave drive ($120) did myself and the transmission (5-speed clutch assembly) ($187) cost $120. The build quality and durability of the 1998-2003 models of the S-10 seem to be so much better than that of the early models from this generation.