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Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer #5422348 05/06/20 07:32 AM
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ZZman Offline OP
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So I found the source of my sister in laws dripping trans fluid. There was one pin hole leak spraying fluid out. From doing research it appears trailblazers have problems with corroded lines. Her lines are pretty corroded. She doesn't have much money and the vehicle is used only a little.

My solution was to buy some 3/8 inch trans hose . I slit it so I could slip it over the line and then used 3 hose clamps to pull it tight against the pinhole area. That has stopped the leak for now. I know this is only a temp fix as the lines will only get worse.

Anyone have similar issues?


2005 Toyota Avalon XLS 3.5 motor
2014 Ford Fusion 2.5 motor
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422355 05/06/20 07:41 AM
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Snagglefoot Offline
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Another way is to cut out the bad section, double flair it the ends and join with a rubber section. The real answer is to replace the lines. Rock Auto has the kits but is bit of a pain if you don’t have access to a hoist.

Last edited by Snagglefoot; 05/06/20 07:47 AM.

If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422360 05/06/20 07:47 AM
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supton Offline
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As a temp fix I'd put some grease or something onto the rest of the line to slow down any more rust. But who knows, keep an eye on the fluid level, and it might last as long as it needs to--sometimes, we get shocked when something that was needed to last, actually does last.


2011 Toyota Camry, base, 2.5L/6MT, 205k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra DC, 4.6L/6AT, 159k, ours
1999 Toyota Camry LE, 2.2L/4AT, 225k, his
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422365 05/06/20 07:51 AM
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Donald Offline
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I would check the brake lines and gas line. They are all likely to be corroded.


2015 Ford F-250 w/Powerstroke
2016 Subaru Crosstrek CVT (wife's)
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: Snagglefoot] #5422379 05/06/20 08:09 AM
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ZZman Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Snagglefoot
Another way is to cut out the bad section, double flair it the ends and join with a rubber section.


I had seen videos on it and thought of that but realized the lines maybe in too bad of shape to do that. Also cutting it would make two large cut areas for potential leaks instead of a small pin hole.


2005 Toyota Avalon XLS 3.5 motor
2014 Ford Fusion 2.5 motor
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422383 05/06/20 08:12 AM
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ZZman Offline OP
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Total line replacement is anywhere from 300-400.00 if a mechanic does it. I could possibly attempt it to save her labor but of course I have no hoist. She just doesn't have that kind of money to spare.


2005 Toyota Avalon XLS 3.5 motor
2014 Ford Fusion 2.5 motor
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422384 05/06/20 08:13 AM
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Donald Offline
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I would want to get it fixed. Thousands to replace transmission vs $100 for the line.


2015 Ford F-250 w/Powerstroke
2016 Subaru Crosstrek CVT (wife's)
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422402 05/06/20 08:29 AM
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Barkleymut Offline
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Is this a 2 year old vehicle with 20k miles, or a 15 year old car with 200k?


09 Vue 2.4L 4spd AT/ 09 Flex 3.5L / 96 F150 5.0 5speed / 07 Mustang GT auto
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422427 05/06/20 08:50 AM
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Strokenmerc Offline
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They haven't made Trailblazers since 2009, so it has some age on it. I have a Trailblazer and would think with a set of ramps, a new line set, and a couple hours this wouldn't be very difficult. The hardest part would be fishing the lines through the tight spaces and finding all of the hold down brackets. The lines do not appear to be very expensive but I don't know which specific model she has. You could buy the lines and install for a Mother's Day gift thumbsup Don't forget to top off the fluid after a drive to warm up the transmission.


2018 Kia Sportage
2011 Chevrolet Cruze
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1999 Toyota Tacoma
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422451 05/06/20 09:07 AM
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zzyzzx Offline
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I already knew that the OP lived someplace where they salt the roads when I read the thread title!
I wish they made these lines from stainless steel.
On my Escort they don't make new transmission cooler lines any more either.

Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422491 05/06/20 09:41 AM
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dlundblad Online Happy
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I did a similar fix on a garden tractor. Almost 2 years with zero issues.


03 Jeep WJ 4.0 208k
02 Volvo S60 2.4T 199k
97 Chevy Blazer 4.3 175k
04 Audi A4 3.0 210k

Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422493 05/06/20 09:42 AM
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BrianF Offline
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Yes, this is a classic issue with the gmt360. Power steering lines are usually the first to go.

The transmission lines are low pressure, so you have options.

Similar issue I had was the crimp from the hard line to flex line on my power steering high pressure line started leaking. Because gm used steel lines, you can use thse compression couplings.

Cut out the bad section, debuted the cut and you install the new segment and crank down the compression fitting.

Cost me an hour or two of my time and 28 bucks. I will snag you a pic today. Just about any hydraulic shop should be able to whip something up.


2006 Trailblazer LT. QSUD, Fram Ultra.
2017 Ram 3500 SLT Megacab. Duron SHP 10w30, Baldwin BT7349.
1993 GMC 1500. QSAD, Fram PH5
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: Barkleymut] #5422556 05/06/20 11:03 AM
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ZZman Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Barkleymut
Is this a 2 year old vehicle with 20k miles, or a 15 year old car with 200k?


2003.....212,000 miles


2005 Toyota Avalon XLS 3.5 motor
2014 Ford Fusion 2.5 motor
Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422568 05/06/20 11:15 AM
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JTK Offline
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I forget the routing of the lines, but like BrianF said, they're hard piped steel lines for the full length on Trailblazers. I'm wondering how horrible a job it would be to just replace the lines? 2003 on is a lot of Michigan winters. If a larger leak arises, that 4L60E will pump itself dry in short order.

I remember doing a cooler line ATF change on my 2005 trailblazer and was caught off guard when my gallon jug filled and overflowed in under 10 seconds.


2019 Nissan Pathfinder SV
2017 Ram 1500 4x4, 3.6L.
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Re: Pinhole leak in trans cooler line on Trailblazer [Re: ZZman] #5422729 05/06/20 02:21 PM
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Dave9 Offline
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Anyone have similar issues is a silly question. Every vehicle in the rust belt eventually gets similar issues if something else doesn't put it in a junkyard first.

You can either spend the time yearly to coat everything with rust deterrent goop, which is its own burden and expense (depending on how snooty you are about what goop to use), or wait for eventual rust problems. Many rusty parts will still outlast the vehicle's normal lifespan, but of course others won't and some in particular, like brake lines, are very important to keep in good shape.

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