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2012 Chevrolet Cruze cooling system problems: coolant leak

Coolant Leak

2012 Chevrolet Cruze

This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Chevrolet dealer.

CarComplaints.com Seal Of This Might Hurt

CarComplaints.com Notes: In many ways, the 2012 Cruze continues the legacy of its predecessor. It's a legacy of sluggish transmissions and coolant leaks, but it's still a legacy.

To be fair, the number of complaints about the cooling system are way down versus the 2011 model which led to a class-action lawsuit.

On the flip-side, there's more concerns about brake problems.

However, there were far more Cruze vehicles sold for the 2012 model year so we'll give it our "Beware of this Clunker" badge rather than the "Avoid Like the Plague."

7.2

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$170
Average Mileage:
73,150 miles
Total Complaints:
17 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace water pump (6 reports)
  2. not sure (4 reports)
  3. replace outlet, thermostat housing (3 reports)
  4. replace water pump, water reservoir & hose (2 reports)
  5. replace throttle body hose (1 reports)
  6. replace water regulator (1 reports)
2012 Chevrolet Cruze cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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2012 Chevrolet Cruze Owner Comments

problem #17

Jun 112020

Cruze LT 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 84,000 miles

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

Through the mechanic I bought the car from, replaced the water pump the day before I bought it.

- Brett B., Mount Sterling, OH, US

problem #16

Dec 092020

Cruze LT 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 91,100 miles

Started overheating, refilled coolant but the thermostat was sticking so I replaced it. Part plus fluid cost $100.

- Brett B., Mount Sterling, OH, US

problem #15

Dec 242020

Cruze LT 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,154 miles

Refilled with antifreeze and now I smell it bad a week after I filed it back up. This is starting to become a money pit.... For the same exact problem.

- Brett B., Mount Sterling, OH, US

problem #14

Feb 082019

Cruze LT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,400 miles

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

click to see larger images

coolant leak coolant leak

I had a pink fluid leaking from under my car like it was a drip coffee maker. Took it to my mechanic who found a leak in the coolant line and connection point. Told me it was a common thing on these cars. He ordered the part which comes as a kit and not the individual piece. It was about $70. Parts, labor, and coolant flush was about $150. Had it in another shop over the weekend for a tire problem and asked them about it and they quoted me $285. Nope went with my trusted mechanic which took about an hour and half to fix.

- Michael A., Las Vegas, NV, US

problem #13

Aug 062018

Cruze

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,582 miles

From what I see there were recalls on this vehicle for this plus about engine oil leaking after changing oil. All of these things are happening now. I bought this car used and don't think the recalls have been fixed and I was told by the recall place and Chevy Dealers that the recalls are not valid now. If this car hasn't been fixed by the previous owner that shouldn't be cancelled for me to get it fixed. I bought this for my 18 yr. son and if he gets hurt or burned up in this vehicle just because the recall is null and void now there will be a lawsuit. This vehicle could be a death trap if it's not fixed. All recalls should be valid until it gets fixed!!

- Karen J., Willow Spring, NC, US

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problem #12

Jun 202017

Cruze 2LT 1.4L Turbo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

On my way to work one day, the car started giving me messages about engine power being reduced and an overheated engine. The thermostat started going up to the hot mark real quick, so I pulled over as soon as I could. I checked under the hood and there wasn't any coolant in the engine coolant reservoir! How could this be? I filled the car up with coolant and drove it back home.

Once I got home and the engine cooled down, I checked the coolant again and I had lost about 1/2 of the coolant. The dealer confirmed my suspicion, the car was leaking coolant. I was just over the 60,000 mile mark, so I had to pay a good $300 out of pocket for multiple repairs. After this, I started noticing deteriorated engine performance. The turbo's boost was pretty much non-existent by 65,000 miles. This car is nice, although it is a maintenance nightmare after 60,000 miles.

- Rustin N., Houston, TX, US

problem #11

Mar 162018

Cruze LS 1.8L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,000 miles

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

coolant leak - replace one the throttle body hose

Like others have reported, coolant leaked. Mileage when problems occurred between 65,000-76,000.

Replaced reservoir, since cracked. While at it, just to make sure everything was new and no problem occurred due to previous experience with other cars. Replaced upper and lower radiator hose, thermostat which had started to fail, water pump and radiator cap. Coolant still leaked, couldn't find the leak. Until finally a friend figured out where it was leaking. The leak is small, therefore hard to detect unless you know where to look. The reservoir coolant has upper and lower hose, the upper hose is connected to a smaller hose which connects to the throttle body. The small hose that connects to the throttle body is a known issue by other bloggers. The hose number is notated in the actual hose, or can take car to dealer to get help in ordering the part, which is what I did. Now I have to keep in mind to replace that hose about every 3 years. What fails, is the small plastic connection that goes into the throttle body. Car lives in AZ.

- J O., Tucson, US

problem #10

Jan 182018

Cruze 1.4t

  • Manual transmission
  • 69,594 miles

  1. Water Pump replacement - was a known GM issue and covered under extended warranty

    2. Water Reservoir replacement - was not covered under warranty however is a known issue.

    3. Hose replacement - was due to wear and tear was told.

    As a result of these malfunctions my engine started to overheat and had to pull over on the side of the highway to let it cool down. Definitely a pain in the butt especially since there no early warning for this. After the engine temp light goes on it gives you a few seconds prior to prompting you to turn off the vehicle and letting it cool down.

- Adil S., Windsor, ON, Canada

problem #9

Jun 042017

Cruze 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 74,000 miles

water outlet pipe when bad on my 2012 cruze this month, it went bad on my niece's 2014 cruze last month.

same problem leaking coolant and then the car runs out.

- Harold H., High Point, US

problem #8

Dec 162016

Cruze LT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

This is a common problem (well, one of many) with the Cruze. It started leaking from the outlet/ thermostat housing when the warranty was in effect, but the hose was the only thing replaced. When I saw it was still leaking, I took it in and was told that they wouldn't cover it under warranty because the warranty had just run out and quoted me $748.92 to have it fixed. I even called GM and they said that even though the issue started while it was under warranty, they wouldn't cover it because the warranty is now expired. The leak has progressively become worse and I don't know what else to do to get GM to cover this issue.

- Corey D., Blackstone, US

problem #7

Oct 032016

Cruze

  • Manual transmission
  • 54,000 miles

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

I reported the smell of antifreeze shortly after I purchased the car ( used) in November 2014. Took it to the dealer for inspection ( this was located 50 miles one way from home. No leaks were detected and there was no odor inside the car.

The odor outside the vehicle continued until mid Sept 2016 when a puddle began to appear underneath. for two years the fluid level didn't drop very much. I took it to a local dealer instead of the 100 mile round trip to the original purchase dealer. The puddle started out small but after a week it was large and the fluid level was dropping

- foxja2010, Elkhart, IN, US

problem #6

Jul 012016

Cruze ECO 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles

It appears they have an unpublished service letter on this one. It extends warranty coverage to 10years or 150,000 miles which ever is sooner. So if you notice your coolant is low look you might want to take it in to have it looked at.

- insurednd, Wyndmere, ND, US

problem #5

Nov 102015

Cruze LTZ V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,000 miles

I bought this car new and have had nothing but issues. First with six recalls since it was bought, plus coolant leak several times, first being the water pump, the most recent was water outlet and hoses leaking at the connections, and a cracked value cover. The limited warranty is long since passed, and the repairs are mounting. Plus there is still 1.5 years to go on the payments.

- aharrelson, Shallotte, NC, US

problem #4

Aug 152015

Cruze LS Eco

  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,000 miles

You fill the coolant 1 day and the next day it's bone dry. Open the cap to fill and all the water & coolant rises back up. When the area is dry it makes the car fans kick on full speed. There is some smoke from the top of the engine because coolant leaks onto engine. Found online that this condition is an recall in the 2011 Chevy Cruze but Chevy doesn't have the 2012 as a part of that recall.

- mzshine, Tampa, FL, US

problem #3

Apr 242015

Cruze

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,000 miles

HAD TO HAVE WATER PUMP REPLACE BECAUSE OF A RECALL AND NOW HAD TO HAVE WATER REGULATOR REPLACED AND WASN'T UNDER WARRANTY OR A RECALL!!!!!!!!!! HEY CHEVY DEALER MFG, YOU OWE ME A NEW CAR OR MONEY BACK I'VE ALWAYS BOUGHT CHEVY AND THIS CRUZE IS THE WORST CAR I'VE EVER OWNED. I BOUGHT IT NEW

- callen681ca, Rutherfordton, US

problem #2

Mar 102015

Cruze LS 1.8L

  • Manual transmission
  • 48,500 miles

Found it odd that a a water pump would go so soon. I think they replaced the thermostat first, about 3 months or so prior to the actual water pump.

- carloco, Toronto, Canada

problem #1

Aug 102013

Cruze LT 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,654 miles

click to see larger images

coolant leak coolant leak coolant leak

I have been visiting GM dealership gateway for around 6 times since I detected, popped up the coolant monitor no action. One day they decided to change the water pump, the cap of the coolant reservoir, and popped up again, result, one month later coolant level dropping again, there is not leaking. They bled the coolant , they made test presion, couldn't find the problem.Visited second dealership Frost, (GM too) I explained everything and presented all the information. They didn't read, bled the coolant, popped up, road test no fault found. This is impacting as well in my opinion in the fuel economy 10.6l/100km. Spoke to Gm customer service (ambassador) no action , bla bla . 10 business days and still I have the problem,. the car is in 13672km. jun28/2004.

Any recommendation. There is a link http://www.cruzetalk.com/forum/25-service-issues/7736-pi0762-coolant-leak-water-pump-jul-11-2012-a.html

for something very close to this issue.

I suspect and internal issue in the engine,due to the bad fuel economy. regards humberto

- Humberto P., Brampton, Ontario, canada

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