Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The Trailblazer emerged from an "upscale trim line" of the Blazer, but there's nothing upscale about its transmission problems or its wonky, unpredictable headlights.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
31,002 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #48

Dec 072004

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles


Contact bought a 2002 trail Blazer in 2004. Contact complained about electrical problems. Brake lights/headlights/ 4-wheel switch, and blower switch went out. On 12-720-04 she started having transmission problems. It started grinding when she put in fourth gear. When she took vehicle to the dealer, they told her that gears were faulty. When she put vehicle in 4-wheel drive, it broke. She had it repaired, and then the headlights went off because the headlight switch burned out. Then she had a new actuator put on it and a month later, she had to have another actuator put in. On 7-20-05 while driving, the 4-wheel drive switch came on, and was switching between 2-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive. Vehicle stopped, and she put it in 4-wheel drive. Went back to the dealer, who told consumer differential failed. Before she could drive home the transfer case module went out. The name of the dealer where she has been taking the car was gillelands at 3019 division street, St. Cloud, mn 56301. In addition to all the vehicle's problems, the sunroof was broken and the sway bar links were loose.

- St. Stephen, MN, USA

problem #47

Jun 292005

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Consumer has 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer. Consumer took vehicle to dealer because vehicle was shifting into 4 wheel drive high and low at random. Consumer was exiting the freeway when vehicle shifted down to 4 wheel drive low. This happened again when consumer was pulling into driveway. When consumer was existing freeway and the vehicle dropped into 4 wheel low consumer noticed that the light said 4 wheel low. Consumer had this happen about six times. This happened while turning into driveway a few times, consumer started turning left into driveway when it shifted down into low. Consumer stopped vehicle, and the light flashed and cycled through different settings until it went back to 2 wheel high. Consumer could feel vehicle shifting in and out of 4 wheel and high and low when light changed position. Consumer contacted manufacturer, and manufacturer stated that there was nothing they could do. Vehicle was taken to dealer, who dealer said that they done a software update to the computer and this may fix problem. Dealer could not guarantee that problem was fixed. Consumer did not want to pick up vehicle because she was scared for her family to ride in vehicle.

- Mtvernon, NY, USA

problem #46

May 102005

Trailblazer 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
Vehicle jumps into 4lo and 4hi at random. Dealership reprogrammed something, and problem continued. Dealer now guessing at problem. When the 4lo engages vehicle acts like brakes lock up.

- Susanville, CA, USA

problem #45

Apr 142005

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles


'02 Trailblazer-I bought the vehicle used at 30K. Every once in awhile when pulling it out of the garage the 4X4 selection lights would go out and the red "N" would flash. When I put the vehicle in neutral the red "N" would go out and the 2wd light would come on. At approx. 40K miles it did it one day when I was pulling out of the garage. Later that day I was just exiting the interstate and heard a loud grinding noise coming from the transfer case/transmission. The noise changed pitch with my speed. When I pulled over to the shoulder I put the vehicle in park and shut off the engine. When I took my foot off of the brake the vehicle started to roll down a hill. I re-applied the brake, started the vehicle and switched it from 2wd to 4WD then back to 2wd. The vehicle then was able to move and I took it directly to the dealership. After they looked at it the next day they said "could not duplicate the problem." They also said that the flashing "N" was not normal and to bring it in if it did it again. After looking at this site I am very concerned for my family's safety in this vehicle. I spoke with Chevrolet customer service on 5/3/05 on this and another issue and was told that my vehicle VIN was not part of the list of those affected by this problem and that it would only be added if the dealership saw the problem.

- Port Byron, IL, USA

problem #44

Mar 032005

Trailblazer 4WD

  • miles
2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer had problems with the transfer case control module. The light on the switch did light signifying whether 2wd, 4wdh or 4wdl was operating. The transfer case did not switch out of 2wd into any other operating modes.

- Liverpool, NY, USA

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problem #43

Mar 102005

Trailblazer 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles
We bought a new 2002 Trailblazer. Never used the four wheel drive until it had 39,000 miles on it. At that time, found out we would need to replace a transmission module. This was replace about three months ago. My wife was driving the truck down the interstate in two wheel drive. Without warning, she felt the vehicle lose power and slow down. She glanced down at the electronic switch indicator for drive condition. The indicator light was flickering between four wheel hi and four wheel lo. If there had been other traffic around, it could have been a serious accident since she slowed down under 40 mph during this ordeal. I was driving the vehicle and was stopped waiting to make a left hand turn. The drive indicator, without warning, started to switch between two wheel drive, four wheel drive hi and four wheel drive low. I didn't move. After about 5 seconds, the lights stopped flashing and the two wheel drive indicator lamp was on. I proceeded to make the turn. The dealer (glenway Chevrolet, cincinnati, oh) finds nothing wrong with the vehicle. Their suggestion: We start to replace parts, at our cost.

- Elizabethtown, IN, USA

problem #42

Dec 312004

Trailblazer 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


The vehicle locks itself into 4-wheel low, which caused the vehicle to go from 45 miles to 25 miles in a matter of seconds. There was no warning. Consumer has taken the vehicle into the dealer 10 times already. Consumer has had 2 accidents with the vehicle due to the vehicle dropping into 4-wheel low. Also, the air bag did not deploy. Consumer was injured.

- Franklin, PA, USA

problem #41

Aug 202004

Trailblazer 4WD

  • 25,848 miles
Re defective 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer 4X4, problem with 4 wheel drive, A/C, batteries, taillights and electrical problems. While driving 55 mph the vehicle's 4-wheel drive went into four wheel high or low intermittently. The vehicle's battery loses it's charge. The taillights went out and the blower in the air conditioner had to be replaced. Fuel splashed out of the filler while the consumer was filling the tank. The vehicle stalled intermittently.

- Auburndale, FL, USA

problem #40

Dec 222004

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 41,697 miles
2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer [xxx]. 4 wheel drive module malfunctioned not allowing vehicle to engage in 4 wheel drive; module was replaced at our expense (can provide receipt). We have been made aware that same type vehicles have had same problem, and we would like to be included in the recall. GM customer service has made us aware that a recall has been made on another series of VIN numbers of like vehicle, and we would like to be included. Updated 07/24/2012 information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- Greensburg, IN, USA

problem #39

Feb 032002

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,667 miles
Vehicle complaint.

- Truckee, CA, USA

problem #38

Nov 032003

Trailblazer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


While driving 5 mph the 4-wheel drive engaged. This caused steering wheel to lock, and the driver had difficulty maintaining control of the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection, and mechanic determined that the transfer case module needed to be replaced, and replaced it. However, the problem recurred, and the mechanic determined that the transfer case needed to be reprogrammed, and reprogrammed it. The problem still occurs.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #37

Dec 052004

Trailblazer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
When turning on the vehicle it accelerated uncontrollably. While driving at low speeds consumer heard a loud knocking noise coming from the front. Vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection, and mechanic determined that the transfer case needed to be replaced, and replaced it twice. However, the problem recurred.

- Chugiak, AK, USA

problem #36

Nov 052004

Trailblazer 6-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,080 miles
While driving consumer found that there was a hole in the rear axle differential and as a result the vehicle could not be driven. This vehicle had one problem after another. However, on November 25, 2004 while consumer was driving heard a very loud noise. Took the vehicle to dealer, and was told that this time it was the transmission transfer case module.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #35

Oct 012002

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,000 miles
I purchased a new 2002 Chevy Trailblazer in the spring of 2002. As early as the fall of 2002 the vehicle began to randomly/automatically change from 2 wheel drive to 4 wheel drive. The switch was not touched and was in 2wheel drive, but the light for 4 wheel drive was on and the car was in 4 wheel drive. This usually would occur on the highway at a high rate of speed. I mentioned this to the dealership, but they stated they could not recreate the scenario. Two months ago, the transmission on the vehicle needed to be replaced at 29,000 miles. I believe this was due to the automatic changing of 2 to 4 wheel drive. I demanded the dealership correct the issue. I have had the vehicle in to their shop four times since to have the same problem corrected, and it continues to happen. I am concerned for the safety of my wife and family ans this vehicle is used to Transport them around. Is there any recourse for me regarding this situation. I no longer feel safe driving this car.

- Ludlow, MA, USA

problem #34

Oct 272004


  • 51,300 miles
Consumer experienced the same problems as stated in recall 01V134000 concerning transfer case. Dealership would not perform repairs free of charge because the VIN was not included.

- Ionia, MI, USA

problem #33

Jun 152004

Trailblazer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
While driving 40 mph steering pulley failed. Vehicle lost power. Dealership was notified, but did not resolve the problem. The vehicle switches itself into 4-wheel drive while the manual switch is in 2-wheel drive. The taillights failed. At new computer had to be installed. The rack and pinion needs to be replaced.

- Charleston, WV, USA

problem #32

Jun 032004

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 41,366 miles
Vehicle will randomly shift from normal 2wd to 4WD without warning. Happens at slow (parking lot) and turnpike speeds (75 mph). Difficult to control vehicle when failure occurs on turnpike. Dealer reprogrammed tccm (transfer case control module) but did not fix problem.

- Wagoner, OK, USA

problem #31

Dec 162003

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • 13,200 miles
Vehicle transfercase shifted without command on wet ice resulting in sliding left of center going into ditch striking culvert becoming airborne landing on top. Vehicle was a total by insurance company.

- Onaway, MI, USA

problem #30

Dec 242003

Trailblazer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,750 miles
2wd 4WD selector switch changes position randomly. Caused a repair to front ring and pinion assembly in differential. Selector switch acted up at 50-70 mph range. Cost of repair: $2000! GM will not cover under any warranty. Based on other consumers complaints. I would think if GM was aware of this many complaints for the same thing, should there not be a recall! my father and father-in-law both worked for GM. I agree with another consumer that GM has no regard for the safety of their buyers. I'm considering going to Ford!!! unless GM will stand behind their "bread winner"??

- North Branch, MI, USA

problem #29

Dec 102003

(reported on)

Trailblazer 4WD

  • miles
Problems with vehicle's brake lights and alternator. The car had problems since it left the dealership. The alternator had to be replaced, the 4-wheel drive switch was replaced, the car stalls, brake lights keep shorting out. It cost the consumer $263.49 to have the car fixed. The consumer was not satisfied with Chevrolet or it's warranty.

- Bayside, NY, USA

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