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.


fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
73,073 miles
Total Complaints:
21 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (14 reports)
  2. replace clutch fan (6 reports)
  3. change oil to synthetic (1 reports)
2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #21

May 032003

Trailblazer LT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 251 miles


My 2003 Chevrolet Trailblazer has not had any problems to mention, other than this ticking sound coming from the motor. All I can figure out is that it stops when I turn off the air conditioner. Don't know what it is, but it is annoying!!! But, I can't complain. Still driving it today, with 200,000 miles. Only minor repairs, oil changes, etc. I would like to have the radio/dash/steering wheel lights replaced, but understand it is costly. They burned out shortly after I got the vehicle. And, I had to replace the thermostat once. I do not like the seats. Not comfortable. AND, the air conditioner doesn't cool while sitting or parked at a red light. Will run you out while running, but not parked. I can't complaint. Has been a GREAT car considering.

- , Jasper, TN, USA

problem #20

Jul 182008

Trailblazer LTZ 4.2L I6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,025 miles

Just like everyone else in this year model, I had a ticking sound, most predominantly while idle with the A/C on.

Also, I think that this is causing my TB to run too cold.

- , Poplar Bluff, MO, US

problem #19

Jul 282010

Trailblazer LX 6 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

Ticking noise almost sounds like engine burning up. I maintain my Trailblazer very well. Have already replaced the fan clutch, and am needing to do it again vehicle going in shop on Monday, for replacement, Had to get oil change on Saturday and guess what, no oil in car what the hell? No smoking and no leaks according to mechanic shop, soooo where is it going? Shop says just normal to burn oil with this many miles!!!!! Could I be burning oil due to fan clutch issue and it putting a strain on the engine when it reeves up when starting it and then when i drive I tend to give it more gas to get it to move to the next gear because the fan clutch wont let it go?

- , Slidell, LA, USA

problem #18

Jul 082009

Trailblazer LT 4.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 44,000 miles


ok the ticking isn't due to the clutch fan being broke. the clutch fan is a separate problem that sucks. i've replaced it twice in a year and a half. it blows when you get on the truck a little especially if you go over 80mph and get up to 80 fast a couple of times. you can get the part at your local parts dealer from $175-280 and the local mechanic can fix it for whatever their hourly rate is cuz it doesn't take long to fix. the ticking is due to poor lifters. its a lifter tap and they all have after certain points. mine started at 43,000 miles. i was told switching to synthetic oil helps alot. but the engines are just poorly made. on one year of the trailblazer the engine is a recall that should say something right there. also the fan is loud. its because the fan is to small there is to much power pushing it and causes them to sound loud and blow too. the high idle is usually a sign of needing a clutch fan. all in all the trailblazer is a good truck that tows nice and gets decent gas mileage, it has some problems like most other cars. mostly the clutch fan and the ticking noise.

- , Hyde Park, NY, US

problem #17

Dec 122009

Trailblazer LT 4.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 117,000 miles

yes the trail blazer is a ticker. my wife just bought one because she wrecked our Toyota 4-runner.I have a funny feeling we should have stuck with the japs!!! I herd alot about a fan clutch that's 700.00. what the hell!! thanks next truck will be Toyota.if you had this problem with your trailblazer and it was the clutch fan please let me know so i don't spend money i don't have on fixing something else!!thanks

- , Jackson, GA, USA

problem #16

Sep 122007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LT V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I by chance had an oil change and went to synthetic oil. The minor tick noise went away. I did notice a slight bit more power.

- , Lakewood, NJ, US

problem #15

Sep 152004

Trailblazer LS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


I noticed my ticking noise when leaving school one day. It was a small tick tick tick tick noise, kind-of like a metronome sound, but here recently it's gotten louder. Sometimes it'll skip a tick or two and keep ticking. Sometimes I can revv my motor a bit and it'll turn off, but when I let off the gas, it'll start right back up. I haven't had my problem fixed yet, don't have the money to, really, but it's very annoying when you're outside the car. I can't believe I've found this site with so many others with the same damn problem.

- , Albemarle, NC, USA

problem #14

Jan 072008

Trailblazer LS 4.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,235 miles

I started noticing the problem approx 1 month after my wife and I took it home. As with everyone else it was more annoying and embarrassing than anything. After researching on this web site, there was no denying that it was the fan clutch. Found a new fan clutch at part source for $289 and $130 labour at a small out of the way GM dealership and she's running quiet!!

- , Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

problem #13

Jan 252008

(reported on)

Trailblazer LS 4.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

I've been hearing a slight ticking noise in my trailblazer for the past few weeks. Suddenly it started sounding much louder (almost like sticking something in the spoke of a bicycle) so I decided to take it in to have it looked at. The car's driving fine but knowing my luck (I only have two payments left to have the entire car paid off) I figured I better do whatever I can maintenance wise to make sure it runs for a while. I took the car to Firestone and explained the problem as a loud ticking or vibration which sounds like it might be coming from the engine. They called me back not twenty minutes later and tod me they think I might have a rod knocking and suggested having my engine replaced/overhauled/rebuilt. They told me they don't normally handle such a large problem and when I asked them if they could recommend me someone they said they'd call around and would get back to me. They then called back and said it would cost $4325 for the engine assembly, $1400 in labor to remove and replace the longblock and $344 for a PS527 install kit. The total with tax was going to be $6647. Being a girl and having no way to know if they're screwing me...I called an engine repair shop out of the phone book who told me they could replace the engine for $2300 dollars. I'm slightly confused about the significant price difference and now after reading everyone's comments on the ticking sound coming from their fan clutch I'm wondering if I even really need a new engine :( Grrrr...

- , Sherwood, AR, USA

problem #12

Jan 262008

(reported on)

Trailblazer EXT LT 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,000 miles

I have had my Trailblazer since it was new and have had almost zero problems with it. The only things have been little annoyances. This ticking noise began a few months ago and I have not been able to figure out exactly where it is coming from. It echoes too much under the hood to pinpoint it. I suppose the most common diagnosis has been the fan clutch. I am trying to wait it out and find out if there is another answer since replacing that hasn't worked for some people. I am disappointed that Chevrolet has not stepped up to the plate with a solution. This ticking noise drives me and my wife crazy and everybody asks us about it.

- , Murfreesboro, TN, USA

problem #11

Jan 012008

Trailblazer LTZ 4.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,671 miles


Those of you with the ticking sound faced with a $750 repair can save a wad of cash. has the clutch for $141, and 2 other more expensive models. Others on the web likely have pricing better than the dealer. It's easy to replace, a few bolts and an electrical plug. Unhook your negative battery cable first.

- , Vancouver, BC, Canada

problem #10

Oct 122007

Trailblazer Limited 4.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,057 miles

I just recently bought a 2003 Trailblazer LT. It had 61,000 miles on it when I drove it off the lot! It now has only 72,000 miles and as of October 12th, it started making the (TICKING) noise! IT is that clutch fan and it does cost about $750.00 to replace! That is more than the taxes I payed on it!!!! If I had known this was a common problem with Trailblazers after 60,000 miles I probably would have just settled for a Ford, or worse, a Dodge!!! Chevrolet, I have become real disappointed in you! What an embarrassment!!!

- , Joplin, MO, USA

problem #9

Aug 282007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LS 4.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,500 miles

I first noticed "MY" ticking noise just after my warranty expired. I brought this to the attention of the dealer at the time but was told that it's just "normal" for the cooling system and engine to "tick" like that. B. S. That's a line of crap if I've ever heard. Every trailblazer that I come across does the same thing. Is this what we get for our hard earned money? If you know what it might be please let me know. My trailblazer now sits with 51K miles on it and it's still ticking away!

- , Ward, AR, USA

problem #8

Sep 212007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

When you start the car or sitting idled you can hear a ticking noise. The car dealership told me it was the clutch fan that was causing the ticking noise and that it would cost me $700 to fix. I think with the mileage being so low and only a year out of warranty that this type of problem should not happen.

- , Topeka, KS, USA

problem #7

Sep 212007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LT 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,800 miles


- , St. Joseph, MI, USA

problem #6

Sep 232007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LS 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

not a mechanic had same problem fan clutch there is a update for your computer to tell the truck when to turn on the fan clutch and now it still makes noise but not as much -can hear myself think

- , Fall River, MA, US

problem #5

Aug 222007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LT V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

We have had this vehicle in the shop more than we are driving it. The ticking is the latest. I'm not taking the vehicle to the dealership tomorrow, I hope a regular mechanic can give us more insight into whether we can expect more problems.

- , Francesville, IN, USA

problem #4

Aug 142007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LT 3.2 L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

Please help.... my 2003 trailblazer makes a ticking sound under idle that i have no clue about.... any suggestions?

- , Houston, TX, USA

problem #3

Jun 252007

(reported on)

Trailblazer LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200,000 miles

As soon as I crank up my truck it begins ticking and everyone can hear it's annoying. Does anyone know what it is? I was told fan clutch.

- , Coldspring, TX, Bosnia & Herzegovina

problem #2

Jan 032007

(reported on)

Trailblazer EXT 4.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles

Every time I start my vehicle I hear that ticking sound, I don't want anyone else to hear it. I have my truck decked out with 22 inch Rims and things like that. To look that nice and to have that ticking sound coming from it is not a good feeling at all. Please help me.

- , Aubrey, TX, USA

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