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2004 chevy trailblazer_ls
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've had my 04 I6 TB for a year now. I bought it when it had about 56k on it, and it's now at 62k. I've had a few issues that seem to get worse and worse.

My car has turned off on me four times since I've bought it. The RPM's just get real low at idles and it turns off. It starts up just fine after that, though. It's only happened four times since I've bought it, and always at red lights, so it wasn't a major concern.

Lately, it'd had been taking too long to turn over. And the car seemed to not have enough electricity (radio display kept dimming) so I changed the battery. The AutoZone rep told me my old battery was dead, but I think she was lying to me to get me to spend $92 on the new one. Now when I start the car, it still takes slightly too long to turn over. And when I do, the clock is always reset to 12:00 (not really "always", just most of the time).

Also, it idles rough. At red lights, the RPMs will be anywhere between 400 and 1100 RPMs. It'll dip, then shoot up, then settle at 600, then go down again to 400 and so on. It's odd. When I step on the gas to get going from the red light, the car seems to shake too much. Like when you turn it on and it rumbles to life, but more so.

Finally, the battery meter also fluctuates. It'll hover around the midway mark for a few seconds, then die to about the quarter way mark, go back up to the halfway mark, then go down again. There doesn't seem to be a relationship between me accelerating and the battery meter moving up or down, though. It just does that. Recently (today), the meter has been going down to the lowest point on the display, and it shoots back up again. When it gets that low, the car chimes the seat belt chime for about a second, the AC goes off, then it all goes back to normal again. It's really worrisome to me.

I posted something similar in reply to someone elses problem, and it was suggested I clean my throttle body. I plan on doing that tomorrow after work. But, can all those problems really be caused by that? Should I consider taking it in to the semi-local Chevy dealer? I was considering driving out from Las Vegas to Los Angeles this week, but I'm reluctant to drive it out there in my TB like this.

Thanks in advance for everyone's help.You dudes are awesome what with your knowledge.
 

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chevy trailblazer_ls
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I would have the alternator tested. The computers are real sensitive to voltage. If it drops real low, they act 'weird and confused'.

Also check your connections at the battery, alternator and numerous grounds to make sure they are all in good condition and tight. I have had a positive cable that was corroded on the inside the insulation and was a bugger to find it until I moved the cable while watching an ohm meter.
 

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2006
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Mine is doing the same thing and throwing the code 0017 but I addressed that and replaced about 3 months ago and it just stared again. I did just wipe the thottle body out while still on the motor and it helped so I will try removing tonight. Seafoam did not help FYI
 

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2004 gmc
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The throttle body is almost certainly the issue of the erratic idle.

http://forums.trailvoy.com/articles.php?do=viewarticle&artid=91

I don't believe the alternator is the root cause of the the electrical problems, because even if the alternator died, the battery would backstop the electrical system and keep the voltage above 12V. And if the battery is new, I think it's more trustworthy than the other suspicious parts we can point to:

1) Battery to frame/fender ground cable. Inspect and sand any corrosion off, and refasten at the vehicle's end.

2) Ignition switch. Common failure item - cheap DIY repair.

http://forums.trailvoy.com/showthread.php?t=50141
 

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2004 chevy trailblazer_ls
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm going to clean my throttle body later tonight. It's 5:06pm and it's 111 degrees here, so I'm gonna wait until it's slightly cooler.

I wish I had done this a month or so ago... back when it was 20 degrees cooler.
 

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:iagree: with the others, posting above me. But, I just wanted to add; that when the battery was changed the PCM was reset to factory adjustments (our PCM has the ability to adjust it's parameters to match engine conditions and your driving habits).
Before the reset, the PCM had adjusted the air/fuel mix to work with the dirty tb, now the mixture causes very noticeable rough idle.

The rough idle, btw, will cause slow turning of the alternator resulting in a lot of movement with the volt meter.

None of this, would cause the clock to reset. That is a different problem. Clean the tb and we can go from there.
BTW, disconnect the battery while cleaning so the PCM can reset again
 

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2004 chevy trailblazer_lt
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I had the exact same trouble on my 04 I6 around the same mileage, I just cleaned my throttle body with some CRC cleaner and it runs great now! Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
:thumbsup:

I just cleaned my throttle body about an hour ago. I drove it around the block twice, and it seems better. The idle RPMs were kinda high at first (1000-1100), but now it's at the normal 600. The idle seems better than it was before. At the same time, the battery meter still dipped below 14. It dipped about two ticks down, then came back up. That's better than it was before, but still a concern of mine. I'll drive it to school and back tomorrow evening (about 22 miles rt) and I'll let you guys know how it works out.

You dudes are awesome with your help. I really like my TB, and I'm really stoked about the level of help you guys provided.
 

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I second these opinions. Have the alternator tested, check the cables for tightness and load-test the new battery.

It wouldn't be the first time a mechanic didn't tighten the cables enough. (They are a bit tricky to tighten with the cover in place.)

Also, there is a high failure rate with new batteries. That's why they have warranties.

These three things may not be the cause of the alternator jumping and the clock resetting, but they are the most common cause of this, and certainly the easiest and cheapest things to eliminate for you right now.
 

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If your clock is resetting itself it must mean your are losing ground or power to the fuse that supplies power to it.
Actually, it's worse than that :eek::eek:.
The clock is part of the radio, and these radios have preset retained memory (kinda like your pc or cell phone).
Unlike an older car radio, the battery can be disconnected for a considerable time before the presets (including the clock) lose their "sets".

The radio provides this capability, so, there maybe a problem with the radio.

I don't have drawings for the radio, so I don't want to speculate on what might be wrong internally :undecided
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
After cleaning the tb and all that last night, I left my car on the driveway for an hour and a half. I turned it on again and it was fine. This morning it wouldn't start. It made a clicking noise, and my key got stuck in the ignition. Then the lights went on in the car. I tried to turn it on, and the same thing: clicking noise and key stuck. Then a moment later the lights came on again, and I was able to remove the key. That was at 7:30 this morning. I'm going to try it again in an hour or so when the temperature goes down.
 

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ALL signs point to one of three things:
- bad ignition switch
- loose battery cables
- bad battery

Quite frankly, a $90 battery is not top quality, and they suffer a high premature failure rate even when new. Have it load-tested and then you will know for sure. It should test at or above its rated CCA.

Inexpensive batteries use thinner plates so they can advertise high CCA ratings.

What make is your battery?

When buying batteries, there are two legitimate philosophies out there: buy very good top quality batteries like the AC Delco 7-year professional series every 5-7 years or buy the cheapest department-store battery you can find and change routinely every 3 years (or sooner at the slightest hint of trouble.)

Our vehicles are VERY battery-dependent to run right. Don't forget that these vehicles have their electrical power supplied by the battery; the alternator charges the battery but it is the battery that supplies ALL the power requirements.

When the clock gets reset like that, it is almost 100% caused by one of the above three.
 

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2003 gmc envoy_slt_xl
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Hi,
Adding to the friends' postings, after checking the battery, If it appeared to be OK, check the alternator. Its brushes my have worn out, and they sometimes disconnect.
If the alternator is also OK, surely then you have a power leak. That means an electrical device in the truck fails to switch off when you leave it overnight.
Is your AC blower functioning fine? Or does it sometimes not respond directly to the speed level you assign?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I've cleaned out my throttle body and checked all the connections and re-tightened everything to make sure everything is ok. The TB runs better now, clock doesn't reset, and it doesn't stall like it has before. But the idle is still a little rought. It just seems to jump sometimes to about 700ish (from the low 600s) and then go back. The car kinda vibrates for a second when it happens. It only happens when it's at a red light or I'm parked, and only sometimes. But still.

Other than that, the TrailBlazer is awesome. I really like that cleaning the throttle body was fairly easy and effective, and now I'm wondering if there are any other quick fixes I should consider doing that will increase performance or MPG?
 

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I've cleaned out my throttle body and checked all the connections and re-tightened everything to make sure everything is ok. The TB runs better now, clock doesn't reset, and it doesn't stall like it has before. But the idle is still a little rought. It just seems to jump sometimes to about 700ish (from the low 600s) and then go back. The car kinda vibrates for a second when it happens. It only happens when it's at a red light or I'm parked, and only sometimes. But still.

Other than that, the TrailBlazer is awesome. I really like that cleaning the throttle body was fairly easy and effective, and now I'm wondering if there are any other quick fixes I should consider doing that will increase performance or MPG?
I have a 2006 Trailblazer with 76k on it. I just had some of the same issues a few weeks back. I replaced the O.E. battery and then after about 2 weeks, started having cranking issues. I checked and rechecked connections, no corrosion anywhere and everything was tight. Turns out the new battery I purchased was the problem, it had a dead cell in it. I thought that something may be shorted out or drawing power, took it to the dealership and they did a draw test and found nothing was drawing any power, but battery health was poor. New battery that had been installed for 2 weeks only had 346 cranking amps which was way to low and not to the specs of the battery, so dead cell. It was pointed out to me by others on here to have the new battery tested, and they were right. Also the covers for the cables I was told can sometimes get pinched when you tighten them up and cause a not so good connection. Hope you get problems sovled.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I got my battery tested recently, and it came up okay. But every time I get my oil changed the guys test it there, too. I have an oil change coming up in a few weeks, so I'll get it checked again. My idle started getting rougher again and the rpm's started getting iffy again, so I'm concerned.
 

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2003 gmc envoy_slt_xl
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I got my battery tested recently, and it came up okay. But every time I get my oil changed the guys test it there, too. I have an oil change coming up in a few weeks, so I'll get it checked again. My idle started getting rougher again and the rpm's started getting iffy again, so I'm concerned.
I've come on a thread with a problem exactly like yours. It accumulates until it starts to stall. The problem was only a dirty cam shaft sensor. He cleaned it and he says it became better than new. Have a look:
http://forums.trailvoy.com/showthread.php?t=60954
 
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