Print this page Notes: Carrying the not-so-proud traditions of its 2002 predecessor, the 2003 has a handful of instrument panel malfunctions that can leave you guessing your speed, engine temperature or how much gas is left in the tank.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
79,771 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.

2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer Owner Comments (Page 6 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #58

Feb 222010


  • 100,000 miles


Lights dim during acceleration. Rumor has it that the car is doing diagnostic tests with extra loads, or the secondary air pump is kicking on.

- Washington, MI, USA

problem #57

Jun 132009

Trailblazer 6-cyl

  • 58,000 miles
Fuel gauge unreliable/erratic. Fuse gauge will read past full occasionally after filling the tank. After some amount of fuel is consumed the gauge will slowly begin reading within range and eventually as the tank empties it will typically, but not always, begin to read what I assume is a correct amount. It is hit/miss at each ignition turn whether the gauge will read what appears to be correct fuel level. When the issue is occurring, the gauge does not do the "zero" reset calibration. I have been advised this could be the stepper motor in the gauge cluster (known manufacturer defect that GM refuses to acknowledge for this model vehicle) or the sending unit. This condition is a safety concern because when it does happen, I never know how much fuel I have remaining and I or whoever is driving the vehicle could be left stranded along a desolate highway with no fuel.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #56

Feb 012010


  • 77,890 miles
Speedometer works sporadically along with the tachometer and is an on going problem....

- Tionesta, PA, USA

problem #55

Oct 152009


  • 95,000 miles


2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer. All gauges on the instrument cluster have stopped working. This is a known problem with numerous makes and models, many of which have been recalled - the Trailblazer has not. GM will not take the initiative to make this right on their own. I think they need a little encouragement. A recall is the right thing to do. A non-functioning speedometer is an easy way to cause an accident.

- Katy, TX, USA

problem #54

Jun 202009


  • miles
Instrument panel gauges have been not working properly. Oil gauge is pegged way past the highest number. Battery voltage shows minus volts, RPM shows minus numbers when stopped or even zero rpms when moving. Temp gauge now starts showing less than normal. This is completely unsafe and needs to be fixed by Chevy. If other models in this class are fixed why not the Trailblazer.

- Lancaster, CA, USA

problem #53

Jun 162008


  • 47,000 miles
Speedometer stop working on Chevy Trailblazer with only 45,000 miles on it.

- Kilgore, TX, USA

problem #52

Jan 152010


  • 139,000 miles


Gauges and speedometer on 2003 Trailblazer quit working. Problem eventually caused problems to the whole electrical system.. headlights went out, all dash lights quit working and electric power to engine eventually shutdown while driving. Had to have it towed to dealer. If you look on the internet this is a very common and dangerous problem for Trailblazers, but no recall?

- Destrehan, LA, USA

problem #51

Jan 052010


  • 121,000 miles
One or more of the gauges on the instrument panel intermittently malfunctions. The first indication was the gas gauge, which when the gas tank was filled, the needle pointed straight down, then would change to random areas on the gauge. I thought this was a result of the float in the gas tank sticking, until the needle pointed to different areas of the gauge at different times; no rhyme or reason, and was not consistent with a "sticking float". then the tachometer would read 5,000 RPM when the vehicle was in park, and 7,000 RPM when going 35 mph, and would point straight down at other times. Then the speedometer would read very random speeds, never consistent, and sometimes will read over 120 mph. The temperature gauge reads different temperatures, and the needle sometimes points straight down. Though these malfunctions are random among the gauges, they are constant as a whole; on a daily basis. All of these malfunctions could be a safety concern. I never know how much gas I have, which could be dangerous if I ran out while on the highway traveling at 70 mph, the speedometer is inaccurate, which could cause an accident in heavy traffic, whether traveling too fast or too slow, the temperature gauge is inaccurate, which could cause severe burns if the vehicle overheated, but failed to reflect that on the gauge, and similar safety concerns with the tachometer, which could also result in severe engine damage. I have also researched this complaint, and realized that there have been many of the same complaint submitted here, and to the manufacturer. I am very surprised that there was a recall for this problem on the 2002 model, but not on the 2003 model, since it is the same problem, and because so many complaints have been filed about it.

- Palm Coast, FL, USA

problem #50

Dec 202008


  • 80,000 miles
I have a 2003 Chevy Trailblazer and about a year ago my speedometer started malfunctioning. After about two months or so it completely stopped working. Then about a month ago the oil gage started malfunctioning. The speedometer would read incorrectly and when I stop it reads as if I were still driving, it doesn't go back to zero. The oil gage does the same thing when I turn of the car it doesn't go all the way back to where it needs to be.

- Santa Maria, CA, USA

problem #49

Oct 142009


  • 120,137 miles
The instrument cluster on my 2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer has completely stopped working. The only thing that works on the cluster is the fuel levels, and that's starting to worry me as well.

- Dover, DE, USA

problem #48

Nov 192009


  • 100,000 miles


2003 Chevy trail Blazer instrument cluster non operational: All gauges on the dashboard panel do not work!

- Monroeville, NJ, USA

problem #47

Jul 282009


  • 88,000 miles
Defect in instrument cluster of 2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer after being rear ended. The speedometer will ready 40 when stopped and 120 when driving. When I took my car in for repairs, they said since this is a known issue then they will not fix it and it will be an additional $700 at my expense. All other models for this year have been recalled because of this except the Trailblazer. I have read numerous reports on the web of this defect. Also, the cd player was jammed in the process of the wreck and they refused to pay for that either. It needs to be recalled for the GM dealers to fix.

- Rowlett, TX, USA

problem #46

Jul 012009


  • 86,000 miles
The tach is not operating properly. It is currently pointed past 7000 RPM when vehicle is off.

- Zephyrhills, FL, USA

problem #45

Mar 042009


  • 95,000 miles
2003 Chevy Trailblazer instrument panel failure. About 2 yrs ago the tach. Quit working or reads incorrectly. Currently the speedometer and now the temp. And gas gauge have quit or give erroneous readings. I was told other truck models have been recalled but not the Trailblazer. This is a dangerous situation for the operation of the vehicle, I have to get it fixed at my own expense.

- Webster, NY, USA

problem #44

Apr 102009


  • 63,000 miles
2003 Chevy Trailblazer. Speedometer went out on my vacation to Florida. Had about 63,000 miles then. It got stuck at different speeds and stays stuck until my husband disconnects the battery cables. It happens probably once a week. Don't have $600 dollars to fix the cloister problem. Reading about the problem it seems pretty common and Chevy should recall it. I've had Chevy's all my life but this one is a lemon and wouldn't recommend it to anyone!!! any suggestions" can Chevy pay part of it or recall it?" thanks

- Neenah, WI, USA

problem #43

Aug 202009


  • miles
2003 Chevy Trailblazer instrument cluster is malfunctioning intermittently. I have owned since new. Also head lamps at time will fail to work, intermittently.

- Montgomery, AL, USA

problem #42

Jun 152007


  • miles
2003 Chevy Trailblazer ls 4X4 - the gauges on the dash board do not work. This includes the speedometer, fuel gauge, oil pressure gauge, battery gauge and octameter. I've read many bulletin boards indicating the same issue. The dashboards for these vehicles should be recalled.

- Woodbridge, VA, USA

problem #41

Jun 052009


  • miles
Dash in Trailblazer not working.

- Laurel, MS, USA

problem #40

May 262009


  • 100,214 miles
Defect in instrument cluster of 2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer. All other models for this year have been recalled because of this except the Trailblazer. I have read numerous reports on the web of this defect. It needs to be recalled for the GM dealers to fix.

- Leesburg, GA, USA

problem #39

Mar 112009


  • 80,000 miles
Purchased 2003 Trailblazer, 1 month after purchase, speedometer and RPM gauge erratically moving consistently. After searching the internet and observing thousands of complaints regarding this same issue I felt compelled to not only write a letter to GM, but also to write complaints to everyone I could possibly think of to write a letter to regarding this problem. Not only does this problem leave the consumer with a financial burden, safety issues should also be considered to the consumer as well as other drivers at risk of being innocent citizens subject to the defective automobiles that GM has been allowed to sell without any loyalty to the consumers who show their american loyalty by purchasing GM's defective automobiles!!!

- Southgate, MI, USA

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