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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,391 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.

2011 Chevrolet Equinox engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Chevrolet Equinox Owner Comments (Page 1 of 6)

problem #114

Nov 172016


  • 88,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While driving approximately 55 mph, the vehicle lost power without warning. The vehicle was pulled over to the side of the road and did not restart. The vehicle was towed to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the rocker arm detached. The manufacturer stated that there was no recall and nothing could be done. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 88,000.

- Blackwood, NJ, USA

problem #113

Nov 172016


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While stopped at a red light, the stability control, traction control, and check engine indicators illuminated while the engine stalled. The vehicle was able to restart. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 90,000.

- Cantonment, FL, USA

problem #112

Oct 142016


  • 115,000 miles
Takata recall my husband and I purchased a vehicle from cornerstone Chevrolet in monticello, mn in March of 2015. In August of 2015, my husband received a letter from GM stating that some of the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox vehicles equipped with the 2.4L engine has an issue with excessive oil consumption. We were informed in the letter that we were not to bring the vehicle in unless we believed this issue was happening. About a 3 weeks ago, our mechanic who performs our oil changes notified us that our vehicle was using excessive oil and that we should bring it into a GM certified dealership to have it looked at. On Friday, October 28th 2016, we brought our vehicle to cornerstone Chevrolet in monticello, they informed us that this particular issue was happening with the vehicle and they were going to get the approval to start working on it. We were called later that day to be told that the GM rep needed us to bring in receipts of our oil changes in order for us to get this issue fixed. We obtained our records and brought them in. The GM rep then told the techs at cornerstone that they were unable to fix the recall because they only allow 7,500 miles in-between oil changes and that we could find this in our owner's manual. I read the owner's manual from cover to cover and found no information regarding this potential guideline. I notified and sent pictures of the information I did find within the owner's manual regarding the oil changes and they passed this onto the GM rep. As of Monday, November 7th, 2016 I am being told by GM that because we are the second owners of this vehicle and not because of the oil change records. We just want our vehicle fixed because we deserve to have it fixed when this is a known GM issue, not an issue of lack of maintenance.

- Big Lake, MN, USA

problem #111

Oct 022016

Equinox 4-cyl

  • 49,000 miles


My 2011 Equinox suddenly lost power while driving and could not control the vehicle in traffic. The vehicle would not start, but would turn over. Fortunately I was able to push it off the highway and tow it home. I then had it towed to dealership in brockport NY (spurr GM dealership). It took 3 weeks to diagnose and repair. The root cause according to the mechanic was that the original factory tensioner to the timing chain failed and the engine went immediately out of time - causing immediate failure of the vehicle and hence control on the road. The engine needed costly repairs of $2600 which is fine (my families life is worth way more) the factory original tensioners evidently fail regularly because they are hydraulic and the intake holes to the tensioner plug easily - Chevy evidently repairs with an improved part that has a wider intake port to prevent clogging. This is a safety issue as control of the car can be lost immediately, without warning and it is difficult to control a car with such a failure causing injury or death of the driver occupants or anyone in other nearby locations to such an event. Chevy does not consider the common failure a "safety" problem rather a "mere" mechanical problem. It is worthy to note the vehicle was otherwise in good shape, well maintained and used synthetic mobil-1 oil - changed 2 weeks prior to such event. The dealer repairs noted no other mechanical issues to the vehicle related to poor or unperformed maintenance.

- Brockport, NY, USA

problem #110

Sep 302016


  • 93,000 miles
Engine has always made a rattling noise which now I believe loose/worn timing chain. Last week the Equinox was stalling at stop signs. It will start right back up then die again. Once it's takes off it runs fine. We took it to the dealer, they said there were 2 codes. 1 read engine misfire other read intake cam valve actuator (something). The dealer cleared the codes (charged me for clearing codes) and then said there was nothing wrong with car and sent me on my way. Couple days later it dies 3 times in a row at stop. The check engine light comes on and stays on for one day. Next day check engine light goes off and vehicle runs fine. Later that day it dies at stop. I call dealer to get another appointment and they say without check engine light on or it dying for them there isn't much they can do. Do a quick google search of Equinox timing issue and this is a very common issue. Of course now it is 3 months out of the 5year powertrain warranty. I have read where there is an extended warranty for this issue. I have a feeling I'm going to be forced to take it to another dealership after they do nothing for it and charge me to clear any codes.

- Carrollton, IL, USA

problem #109

Sep 212016


  • 96,800 miles
Starting approximately two weeks ago my car would hesitate when accelerating from a stop and either lurch while going into gear or would cut the engine. This would happen every day and I would lose the engine between 1 and 10 times per day. I took my car into the dealership on Tuesday, Oct 4, and was told it was the cam actuator solenoid that wasn't working. I know there is a recall for the year, make L, and model for my car but the VIN isn't covered.

- Grandville, MI, USA

problem #108

Sep 212016


  • 89,000 miles


While driving on the freeway it would shut off during low speeds. Issue happened 20+ time during one 15 minute drive. I would need to put the car in neutral to start it again, but once I slowed down it would shut off. This also happened when stopped at a light, once I pressed on the accelerator to begin moving, the vehicle would stall out, powering off and requiring me to place in neutral to start again.

- Richmond, TX, USA

problem #107

Aug 102016


  • 59,600 miles
Car stall many time in the middle of an intersection when you pull out from a light or stop sign due to bad intake cam solenoid. Had to restart car severial time just to get clear of the intersection. Car may then run ok for weeks and then do it again. GM stated it is not part of there recall, even thou it has the same issues as the cars under the recall

- Warren, OH, USA

problem #106

Aug 012016


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While operating the vehicle, the odor of fuel and oil were present inside the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the pistons would need to be replaced and the vehicle experienced an oil consumption failure. The manufacturer was notified of the failures. The failure mileage was 80,000.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #105

Mar 252016


  • 126,582 miles
Chevrolet released this car with a bad engine from the beginning. I literally have to change the oil on my car ever single week. " excessive oil consumption " is what they say & only has a warranty up to 120K. When my car started acting out, I was at 126K. It drives very sluggish and horrible, like my engine will give out at any moment. Someone really needs to issue a recall, because this affects all ( or close to) 2010 - 2011 GMC terrain & Chevrolet Equinox & I just so happen to have an 11' Equinox. I don't want to lose my car over a classic Chevrolet screw up!!!

- Pontiac, MI, USA

problem #104

Jul 212016


  • 34,681 miles


Vehicle engine stalled while the vehicle was in motion at 35 mph resulting in impaired steering ability, and loss of vehicle control in a road curve. A crash was narrowly avoided. No warning light or operator notification was present prior to the incident. Odb scan codes indicated a P0010 code ¿camshaft position actuator solenoid valve¿. vehicle stalled while vehicle was in motion on at least 5 other occasions returning vehicle to dealer for service. Service history indicates the intake camshaft solenoid was replaced under warranty in 2011 due to identical failure mode and fault code, the exhaust camshaft solenoid failed with code P0011 and was replaced under warranty in 2015, and the intake camshaft solenoid failed again in 2016 at 34,681 total vehicle miles. Vehicle has been operated in nominal city driving conditions with consistent maintenance of the oil and oil filter per the oem oil life monitor. The third failure of the camshaft solenoid was charged at customer expense. Repeat failure of the camshaft solenoid actuator indicated an unmitigated product design issue resulting in engine stalls without warning while the vehicle is in motion and impaired steering control.

- Allen Park, MI, USA

problem #103

Jul 292016


  • 140,000 miles
My engine light came on and sometimes when I start to accelerate my car it will just die (even on the highway in traffic!!!). it has happened 9+ times already and some of those times the engine light was no longer on.

- Excelsior Springs, MO, USA

problem #102

May 052016


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While driving at any speed and making a right turn, the engine stopped. The vehicle restarted. The failure recurred numerous times. The vehicle was driven to the dealer's mechanic where it produced intake cam actuator failure code P011. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #101

May 172016


  • 63,000 miles
While driving on the highway the check engine light came on. Immediately in the message area two message were displayed - "reduce engine power" and service stabitrack soon". immediately the vehicle would not go over 3000 RPM and 50 mph. Within a mile the engine lost all power (luckily this was as I was hitting the exit ramp off the highway). After waiting for a few minutes I was able to fire it up but the errors returned. I limped the vehicle home and had it towed to my local garage. My mechanic indicated there were 9 error codes when he looked with his scanner related to fuel pressure, cam sensors, and motor timing. Furthermore, since I was due for an oil change, he drained the oil pan and saw I was nearly 3 quarts low on oil. This is puzzling as (1) I just checked the oil two weeks ago and, while a bit low, was in operating range and (2) the low oil pressure light never came on. After reading other complaints on this and other sites this seems to be a common occurrence. So now I have a vehicle with 63,000 miles that my mechanic says has significant engine damage (timing chain tensioners, cam sensors, fuel pump). This is very difficult for me to believe since there was no warning lights that came on for low oil and at this relatively low mileage. My only alternatives are to pony up for the parts (and hope the pistons/seals are undamaged) or replace the motor. I also think its quite dangerous for the motor to just cut out like this without more advance warning (I was lucky I was already getting off the highway). Needless to say my confidence with GM is pretty much gone.

- Lyndhurst, OH, USA

problem #100

May 112016


  • 34,800 miles
Vehicle stalled when engaging drive gear. Code indicates engine variable timing solenoid intake to be replaces.

- Sylvania, OH, USA

problem #99

May 092016


  • 73,000 miles
While driving on a major highway with an 18 wheeler behind me, the vehicle stopped going forward when I pushed on the gas. It was still running but had no power and began to slow down to nothing. I was able to coast to the side of the road, but was almost run over due to the sudden loss of power. I cut off the vehicle and tried to restart it, but it would only make a clicking sound. According to the dealership we towed it to, the timing chain slipped and ruined the motor. This is a 2011 vehicle with only 73000 miles on it. This should not have happened and since we made our final payment last month, none of it is under warranty. Surely this is not typical of this vehicle and the Chevrolet company can stand behind this repair.

- Hamlet, NC, USA

problem #98

Apr 252016


  • 86,000 miles
Excessive oil consumption. 1qt per 1,250 miles. Needs major engine repairs at less than 86,000 miles. I've heard that if allowed to continue that engine can stall while driving. This could be a dangerous condition if stalling while travelling at maximum highway speeds. Driver could lose steering control.

- South Lyon, MI, USA

problem #97

May 282014


  • 72,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While driving 65 mph, a loud banging noise was heard under the hood of the vehicle when the gears were shifted. The failure recurred intermittently. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the transmission, catalytic converter, and engine chain failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the vehicle was out of warranty. The failure mileage was 72,000.

- Gouldsboro, ME, USA

problem #96

Apr 132016


  • 109,000 miles
My 2011 Equinox had a loud banging sound in the engine. The oil was changed at 104K and is now at 109K. Car broke down in driveway. I had it towed to the dealership where they could find a leak or burning of oil. They stated that there was not one drop of oil left and the timing chain and guides were ruined. The dealership blamed jiffy lube by saying they did not put sufficient oil in the car; and jiffy lube blamed Chevrolet stating they know they have engine issues in this model (the cars "eat" oil) the dealership said that corporate headquarters want to open the motor up for 2K to see if it is a defect in the model. I am not willing to pay this. Two years ago they had to rebuild the cylinder head because of a manufacturers defect.

- Commack, NY, USA

problem #95

Apr 172016


  • 5,000 miles
The headrests on this car push my head so far forward that I have terrible pain while driving. I also cannot see where I am going due to the extreme angle of my head jutting forward. Not too safe--any reasonable person can figure this out. In addition, the car is burning excessive oil. Also, when trying to accelerate after slowing down in heavy traffic, it bogs. Again, not very safe. This car is a piece of crap--never again will I get a Chevrolet. This happens all the time!!

- Lowell, IN, USA

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