Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

7.9

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$2,239.00
Average Mileage:
89,798 miles
Total Complaints:
83 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (40 reports)
  2. add oil when needed (17 reports)
  3. replace engine (7 reports)
  4. sell the piece of @#%t (5 reports)
  5. just add oil every 1500 miles (4 reports)
  6. replace the rings and complete head job (3 reports)
2001 Chevrolet Prizm engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Chevrolet Prizm Owner Comments (Page 4 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #23

Aug 252007

(reported on)

Prizm LSI 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Purchased car two months ago, looks and drives like new. Noticed that the oil was about 2 quarts low. Added the 2 quarts and didn't think much of it until today. Have put 3,000 miles on it and finally checked the oil again. Nothing on dipstick!!! Put 2.5 quarts in it and found this site. I sure hope there is a recall of some kind!!! This is ridiculous!!!

- , Lincoln, NE, USA

problem #22

Sep 242007

(reported on)

Prizm 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I own four Prizms. The 1994 and 1995 burn no oil, but the 2001 and now the 2002 have become oil burners. The 2002 has 70,000 miles, and is burning about a quart every 1,500 miles, but the 2001 is much worse. I could hear the tappets knocking so I pulled over and checked the oil in the 2001. Empty. Luckily, I had an emergency quart in the car. I drove a 1987 Chevy Nova (virtually the same car) 240,000 miles. But now I am gun shy about buying a Corolla or a Pontiac Vibe. I haven't heard a word from GM about a recall on the 2002. I imagine Corrolas are experiencing the same problem. It is disheartening to find the car you depended on for so long is a lemon.

- , Sandwich, IL, USA

problem #21

Aug 202007

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 63,000 miles

2001 Chevy Prizm. I've owned it since 2004, so about 3 years now. I almost lost my car on a weekend trip to and from Boston to Rochester NY. I and my mechanic thought maybe the bad air filter was to blame. I replaced the filter and I'm still losing oil. I just took a trip to Ottawa and had to check the oil every couple hundred miles, and sure enough I was down at least a 1/2 quart, if not a whole quart. I just dropped it off and my mechanic says this is a flagged problem and might be a recall issue with some valve. He needs to keep my car overnight to check it in the AM.

I'm happy with this car so far, but this is not cool. I shouldn't have to fill my car with oil every time I fill it with gas. I'm going to monitor this site for any advice on how to handle this through GM, and certainly will report if I hear anything from my mechanic. I'm pretty stupid when it comes to cars, so I'm really hoping. I don't know what my options are in terms of yelling at GM and joining some kind of class action suit.

And this is GM we're talking about here, so I'm not expecting a whole lot of useful customer service...

- , Webster, NY, USA

problem #20

Jul 102007

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Bought this vehicle used in 2004, ran great for 2 1/2 years. Researched Edmunds.com prior to buying and was given 5 stars for reliability. Also the Toyota Engine made the choice even easier to purchase...... hmmm, well reliability at this point is horrible. I've always made it a habit to maintain my cars, change oil/plugs, etc. However a couple months ago after exiting the highway the car started to make a knocking sound and stalled. Had towed home and noticed no oil ( I just changed it 1 month prior). I never got a Oil Light warning or anything. * Had towed to a shop and they recommended a new engine $3200.00 Since I don't really have that kind of cash lying around I am currently borrowing a vehicle. * Still unsure as to what my next step is - might try to fix it myself however "time" is an issue with Full-time work and kids. * Just really upset with this car, a 2001 with 62K and is currently sitting on the road. * It's comforting in a way to know that I'm not the only one with this problem, had I known about this issue before I might have checked the oil more frequently. It was probably running on no oil for a couple weeks (who knows!!!!) * Hope everyone's problem has been resolved. I'll never buy GM again, per someone's note Toyota would correct the situation, however GM won't.

- , Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #19

Jul 182007

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,000 miles

I had an oil consumption test done. As the engine was over a certain mileage, it was not covered. May I add, that I had a new used motor put in it already (after sale, included in warranty)

Seems this is an ongoing problem with this engine. The oil light may or may not come on. If you keep this car, you will have to be diligent in checking the oil every-other gas fill up. Seeing my car is paid for, and I don't wish to get a new car loan... I will bite the bullet, check it often, and fill the bugger with oil. 5W 30 not 10W 30...

Oh yeah, who's idea was it to put the cup holder over the ashtray?

Jill

- , Bainbridge, NY, USA

problem #18

Jul 172007

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

I actually own a 2002 Chevrolet Prizm Same issues as everyone else. However, my engine started knocking and died. Everyone needs to call Chevrolet and advise of this issue - Toyota owners did the same and have been reimbursed for repairs. I personally have given an earful to Chevrolet and have an RVP getting involved. Appears we all have fairly low mileage. Call Chevrolet and Complain. If the RVP does nothing for me I will file a suit - supoena this website and everyone else who has the same issue.

- , Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #17

Mar 272007

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Same problem: Heavy oil consumption. Bought the car with 36,000 miles. At the time it used about a quart between oil changes. Wasn't terribly worried because my previous '94 Prizm did the same thing but never got much worse, even at 130,000 miles. Annoying but I could live with it. Anyway, my 2001 Prizm has always had regular oil changes... the problem remained fairly constant until about 65,000 miles and consumption starting increasing. Now the car has 77,000 miles, and within the last month it increased to 1 quart every 250 miles!!

My mechanic initially thought it needed a complete head / valve job, but when he got the report from the machine shop, there was strong indication of an oil ring failure in one cylinder. My mechanic says his research (Toyota and other rebuild shops indicated that there is NO REBUILD kit for this engine. (I'm not sure where previous poster found oil rings for this engine.) I recall reading at an engine rebuilder's website a while back that the reason rebuilding is not recommended is that the Corolla engine does not have cylinder walls thick enough to handle honing or re-boring. So, I'm told I can either replace with another used engine (Yeah, like I'm SURE going to do that!!) or replace with a brand new engine from overseas (about $5,100 with 3 yr parts and labor warranty.) I'm considering the new engine since this is the only problem this car has ever had (a biggie of course). The mechanic told me that often when a problem is discovered with an existing engine model they re-engineer to make the new ones better than the originals. But on the other hand, it's very tempting to sell this car! Given the number of similar complaints, I truly hope there is a class action lawsuit against GM and/or Toyota. I'M DISGUSTED!!!

- , Kansas City, MO 64151, USA

problem #16

Nov 062004

(reported on)

Prizm

  • 75,000 miles

i recently wrote a complaint about this engine eating up the oil, i forgot to mention that there are no leaks, every where i go i check before and after entering the car even when the car is on and it doesnt produce no green or bluish exhaust color.

I have no clue what could be the problem, once again from the last time that i wrote this complaint i have added another 3 quarts of oil to this car and im just losing it. Please help....?

- , Beltsville, MD, USA

problem #15

May 222006

(reported on)

Prizm

  • 80,000 miles

I have to add at least 1 quart of oill every 1,000 miles or so. I see no visible leaks, and no smoke out the exhaust. There is a known problem with Toyota Corollas with this same engine. It is caused by oil sludge in the engine. Toyota has extended the engine warranty and is apparently covering engine failures due to lack of oil. Chevrolet has no information about this problem on their Prizm website.

- , Loveland, CO, USA

problem #14

Oct 102006

(reported on)

Prizm

  • 110,000 miles

We have had to put in a quart of oil per week for at least 2 years. Has anybody else had this fixed? If so, how much did it cost?

- , Orem, UT, USA

problem #13

Feb 262007

(reported on)

Prizm 1.4L 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Need to add 1 quart of oil every 500 to 750 miles. Nobody can tell me what is going on. Car runs great except for checking the oil all the time for fear of running out. Had car recently tuned up. Replaced plugs - no problems, replace PVC valve, no probles. Cleaned throttle body, so no problems there either. No visible smoke. If somebody finds a real cure, please let us know.

- , Grand Rapids, MI, USA

problem #12

Feb 182007

(reported on)

Prizm 1.8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

2001 Chevy Prizm/same as a COrolla... Excessive oil consumption

28 year GM employee, know my way around cars.. rebuild wrcks, R&R engines, etc.

This car was purchased with 50k miles in January 2005, used no oil at first (remember it was winter). Then when summer came here in TN car would use 1-2 qts between changes (not too worried yet). Oil consumption was always worse in hot weather than in cool or cold. Oil consumption was always worse when excessive highway driving took place.

Now its February 2007 and this car will use 1 quart per week (probably less than 500miles). Ran compression test, approx 200psi in all cylinders with lowest cylinder within 10% of the highest, had a leak down test performed and nothing unusual was found. Checked plugs and they are burning clean, removed valve cover and found valvetraina rea was clean as well with oil drain back hole(s)unobstructed. PCV valve was replaced (old one was not plugged).

This thing is a major POS, and people rave about Toyota's? you've got to be out of your freakin minds.

I will take this to the dealer for diagnosis so I can document the proper steps, then I will be appealing to our UAW/GM board for for further analysis and consideration.

After reading many message boards I still cannot conclusively find if its a ring problem or valve seal/guide problem. Car does not visibly smoke, but the converter was replaced about a year ago while still under warranty. I saved a oil sample today and will be sending it in for analysis.

I think maybe we have the basis for a class action lawsuit, I will keep this board informed

- , Nolensville, TN, USA

problem #11

Feb 162007

(reported on)

Prizm LE 1.8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

Purchased used with 54000. No signs of anything wrong only to find out it uses 2qts of oil ever 1200 miles. Spoke with GM - they said "to bad" and would not not help. They would however provide me with $500 of off the price of a new GM product. Yea - like I'll make that mistake again. Spoke with the mechanic- he said that putting in a new ring kit only solves the problem about 50% of them time and would cost about $2500. Suggested a new engine which would run about $6000. Any ideas on what to do would be greatly appreciated

- , Webster, SD, USA

problem #10

Jan 302007

(reported on)

Prizm 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

I bought this car with 24,000 miles on it. I use this car for my work and ut used maybe a quart between oil changes. Now I have 90,000 miles and I changed the oil and filter 2 days ago and today 200 miles later, I heard a pinging noise under the hood and found no oil on the dip stick! I have owned several Toyota vehicles and was very pleased with them, but this 1.8L is a piece of crap! Toyota should be ashamed to have their fine name on this!

- , Corpus Christi, TX, USA

problem #9

Jan 222007

(reported on)

Prizm LSI 1.8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

I bought this car used and in excellent condition with 64000 miles. Now I find it's using a quart of oil every 600 miles. Disgusting

- , Zanesville, OH, USA

problem #8

Jan 182007

(reported on)

Prizm 1ZZFE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

Engine started guzzling oil - up to 1 qt /500 miles depending on driving (Colorado, mountains). It did not smoke visibly. Eventually I had to replace the rings, and 10k miles later, all 16 valves were bad. Cost me a LOT of money and I did all the removal/installation work myself. Toyota should be ashamed of ever producing this engine.

- , Grand Forks, ND, USA

problem #7

Dec 192006

(reported on)

Prizm LX 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,000 miles

I have to keep track of my mileage so I can add oil to it. It needs it one quart every 1500 miles. Also my check engine light has been on for the last 2 years and no one can fix it!!!

- , Rensselaer, IN, USA

problem #6

Nov 212006

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I drive a lot and just discovered that my car is using way more oil than any other car I've ever had. I keep oil with me at all times and top it off now. I also had the problem where my engine was ticking badly and when I checked the oil, there was practically none in there. My oil light did not alert me either.

- , Winston-Salem, NC, USA

problem #5

Sep 132006

(reported on)

Prizm

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,000 miles

Glad to see others have the same problem. No leaks, no smoke... but uses alot of oil. I'm having my mechanic look at this problem (going to do an oil consumption test under warranty) If I find something out... I will defintely let you all know!

- , Bainbridge, NY, USA

problem #4

Jul 182006

(reported on)

Prizm

  • 80,000 miles

Consumes about 1-2 quarts of oil a week. The underside of the hood is soaked with oil. Fresh oil is around the oil cap, but I can't see how it could leak that much from the oil cap. Even replaced with a new one.

- , Overland Park, KS, USA

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