Print this page Notes: The 2006 Equinox is plagued by a heating problem, as in the heater only blows cold air.

The reported cause of this problem is a small door, known as the air temperature blend door, which allows air to flow past the heater core. This door has a plastic connecting shaft to an electric motor and the shaft is prone to breaking after a few years. The problem has a typical repair cost of over $800.

The 2006 Equinox also has a number of reported problems ranging from the key getting stuck in the ignition, to failing speed sensors, and trouble starting the engine. All in all, this car sounds like one worth avoiding.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
58,560 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.

2006 Chevrolet Equinox engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Chevrolet Equinox Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #18

Aug 152007

Equinox 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 25,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox. While driving approximately 25-30 mph the contact heard water moving inside the dashboard. The failure started in August of 2007. An authorized dealer advised him that the head gasket and lifters were failing. The contact advised the dealer to replace the engine because of the failure. The contact also authorized the dealer to replace the engine. A complaint was filed with the manufacturer. The approximate failure mileage was 25,000 and the current mileage was 59,347. Updated 05/05/11 the consumer stated the check engine light illuminated. Updated 08/19/11

- Clovis, CA, USA

problem #17

Mar 012011


  • 74,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox. The contact stated that the vehicle was leaking antifreeze abnormally. She also noticed that when the vehicle was either parked or idle, the temperature gauge would increase and she would be forced to turn the vehicle off to prevent it from overheating. The dealer advised the contact to bring the vehicle in for diagnostic testing. The vehicle was instead taken to a private mechanic where they informed her that the head gasket was blown. The contact was awaiting repairs. The current mileage was approximately 75,000 and the failure mileage was approximately 74,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Cottage Grove, MN, USA

problem #16

Oct 012010


  • 50,000 miles
2006 Chevy Equinox blowing cold air. Dealership said plastic door part is broken that controls direction of cool or hot air. $50 part $1200 labor to remove dash to fix, not under warrenty. Safety issue, moisture builds up on inside of windshield and freezes.

- Indiana, IN, USA

problem #15

Jun 012010


  • 40,000 miles


Last summer the ac in my car started to act weird, I just had bought the car and didn't think much of it for a while. Then, after having my daughter and having her get over heated because the ac was freezing up I decided to take it to a repair place that told me that there was a plastic versus a metal arm that opens a door that allows the cold and hot air flow to go through my car and that it needed to be replaced with in fact a metal one. This was going to cost me a lot of money, roughly 1000-1500 dollars of which I do not have, since summer was nearly over I decided it was not that critical and I drove other family members vehicles if I had a long way to drive so my baby didn't over heat in her car seat. Now as of today my heat isn't working, it is freezing outside and once again the safety of my child is at risk because she is cold. I have read tons of complaints online and reviews hat tons of people with the same car are having the same problem and that the metal arm replacement part is very cheap but that the labor is through the rood. I cannot afford the labor and I cannot afford my child to be over heated or freezing because Chevy/GM decided to be cheap and use a plastic piece instead of metal to save a buck or two. I want this to be recalled, this is affecting hundreds if not thousands of people who have gotten a 2006 Equinox. I would like something done about this as soon as possible because I cannot continue to put my child in an unsafe and uncomfortable environment.

- West Chester, OH, USA

problem #14

Dec 302007


  • 34,000 miles
2006 Chevy Equinox has problems starting. Have to push gas pedal to even get it to start at times. This has been an issue since we bought the car in Dec of 2007 with 32,000 miles on it. Second day after we had car the check engine light came on so we brought it in. After that is when the starting issues started have brought it to the dealer 3 different times and the issue will not duplicate itself for them so there is not an issue to them.

- Jber, AK, USA

problem #13

Sep 012010


  • 52,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox. The contact stated that when driving at any speed the check engine and traction control warning lights would illuminate intermittently, causing the vehicle to loose all power. The dealer made four attempts to diagnose the failure but to no avail. The contact did not inform the manufacturer of the failure nor was the vehicle repaired. The VIN was unavailable. The current mileage was approximately 53,000 and the failure mileage was approximately 52,000.

- Kirkland, WA, USA

problem #12

Nov 152010

Equinox 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


The heat started to take longer to warm up then after a month of this the heat totally stop working. I can't defrost the windows. This occurs everytime. I have research this and there are numerous complaint about having this issue. GM needs to recall this because they charge anywhere from $900-1200 to fix the problem. I found that the air blend door on the actuator that controls the temp of the airflow. I have found this problem going on since 2008 on the 2006 Chevy Equinox and Pontiac torrent.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #11

Oct 032010

Equinox 6-cyl

  • 70,409 miles
I have a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox that is blowing ice cold air through the heater as well as the defrosters I think along with the other 329 people who I read about has the same problem.and they all estimate the cost of repairs is 1,000 dollars we need help I tried replacing the thermostat but no help still cold air.

- Claysville, PA, USA

problem #10

Mar 192010


  • 78,000 miles
Blend door on 2006 Chevrolet Equinox has broken and does not allow heated air to be circulated through the vents -- only cold air. GM has known about this condition but refuses to fix the issue, regardless of it's countless documentations of the problem. Without heat being circulated through the ventilation system it causes a serious safety hazard as fog and haze will cover the interior of the windshield and eliminate the driver's view of the road. To repair the door the entire dash of the vehicle must be removed to replace the door, totaling over $1,200 in labor.

- Wichita, KS, USA

problem #9

Jan 082010


  • miles
1) fairly new Chevy Equinox (2006) with $65,000 miles overheated in traffic without warning - within a day, difficulty starting vehicle and white smoke came out of the tail pipe when starting the car in the morning - car showed no symptoms until problem occurred 2) car overheats and stalls out as a result - per the mechanic, it has blown head gaskets 3) head gaskets replaced at $2,800 - the car isn't even four years old after researching more about the problem to see if my cost of repair was within the average for such repairs, I saw that many owners have had the same problem with the Chevy Equinox, and that it is likely a faulty design issue.

- Studio City, CA, USA

problem #8

Sep 122009


  • 46,000 miles


No heat. Dealer says that the air mode door is broken. Dash needs to come off to repair it. Part $65 labor $1200. My car has 42,000 miles. This is ridiculous. I see numerous complaints regarding same matter. When will you recall? no heat and 25 degrees outside is unsafe!

- Kent , WA, USA

problem #7

Oct 302009


  • 25,000 miles
No start. Car will not turn over when the key is turned. Will have to press on gas to start car. Sometimes that does not work either. Have to wait a few minutes to start.

- Kent, WA, USA

problem #6

Aug 012009


  • 75,000 miles
I have no heat in my car. The heater is blowing cold air. I have a four year old daughter and will have to get it fixed immediately despite GM suggesting that I have it diagnosed then call them back. The problem appears to be with the blend door, based on information found on the internet. There appears to be a significant number of individuals experiencing this problem with this model based on information contained on the internet. It does not appear as though this problem is caused by normal wear and tear.

- Wilmington, MA, USA

problem #5

Jul 252006


  • 44,000 miles
Stalls sometimes when trying to start vehicle, every 3 to 4 months will not start at all autoway Chevrolet replace the part however the same thing keep happening every 3 to 4 months. The truck was new when purchased.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #4

Nov 072007


  • 26,997 miles
The same problem has been occurring for over a year. Where I go to start my car, my key turns over but the engine never kicks on. Its makes an odd noise, not grinding but a noise. It takes about 6-7 times before the vehicle will kick on. Once it finally starts there is black smoke and fluid coming out of the exhaust pipe. The RPM's rev up to 8K than down to 4K, the car idles and sounds like it wants to die. I have brought my car back and forth to the dealership 6 times since April 15, 2008. So far nothing has been done and they state the car is up to GM standards. I have wasted much time and money into this issue and soon the car will be out of warranty. I have a feeling that once the warranty is up that they will charge me an arm and leg to get it fixed. I have a 2006 Chevrolet Equinox will a little bit under 34K miles.

- Baldwinsville, NY, USA

problem #3

Nov 012007

Equinox 6-cyl

  • miles
2006 Chevy Equinox problem with front end. Consumer stated that the vehicle is making a noise in the front end. She states that the engine revs. The consumer stated the steering froze twice.

- Burgaw, NC, USA

problem #2

Jul 032006

Equinox 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50 miles
Bought new 2006 Equinox with three original miles. 1) right rear seat belt locked up, ratchet tighter and would not release until removed and fully retracted. Six occurrences, three times to dealer who could not duplicate. 2) left rear seat belt locked up, ratchet tighter and would not release until removed and fully retracted. Four occurrences, three times to dealer who could not duplicate. 3) engine falters when in reverse. Three occurrences, dealer has not looked at this issue. 4) instrument cluster / gauges not working. Three occurrences, two times to dealer who could not duplicate. 5) engine will not start. Six occurrences, one time to dealer who could not duplicate. 6) engine will hesitate to start / extended crank. Five occurrences, one time to dealer who reprogrammed PCM but issue still exists. 7) ignition switch grinding or will not turn. Daily occurrences, one time to dealer, issue still exists. 8) no onstar data communication. One occurrence, one time to dealer who could not duplicate. 9) onstar unable to detect service light in instrument cluster. Issue not brought to dealer at this time. 10) engine coolant extremely low within 5000 original miles. Issue not brought to dealer at this time. 11) engine coolant brown and foaming. Issue not brought to dealer at this time. 12) alarm system deactivated itself, interior and exterior lights on, doors were still locked. Issue not brought to dealer at this time.

- Mount Angel, OR, USA

problem #1

Jan 132006

Equinox 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,150 miles
I have a 2005 Equinox 4WD. On Jan. 13, 2006 while driving 70 mph the SUV completely shuts down, engine, lights, everything!. this happened twice in one day. I was able to crank it and it get it back to my home. Then on Jan. 16th, 2006, for the 3rd time, it was 5:30 am completely dark while I was driving @65 mph, the SUV completely shuts down again! I could not see anything because it was pitch dark. I managed to find a flash light with the help of my 14 year old daughter. I was 6 inches from a mailbox! after a few minutes the SUV cranked. I drove it a few miles more to the dealership where I bought the vehicle. The dealer kept it from Jan. 16th, 06 to Jan. 31st, 2006. They brought the vehicle to me on Feb. 1st., 2006. Supposedly it was something to do with the ignition system. It drove fine until March 9th, 2006. The same thing happen. While I was driving the engine totally shuts down, without warning. I managed to coast to the side of the road. It cranked after a few minutes and I drove it about a mile and parked it at our shop. The dealer was notified the next day on March 10th, 2006 about the problem. They sent a wrecker to pick it up.

- Garrison, TX, USA

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