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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
62,282 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 3 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #79

Dec 032015


  • miles


I received a letter from GM/Chevrolet in August 2015 regarding oil consumption issues in my 2011 Chevrolet Equinox (service bulletin no.: sb-15285). I am currently having this issue monitored for this as I was told I would have to have bring it to the dealership every 1,000 miles for monitoring before they would do anything about this. In the meantime I have gotten a check engine code P0420 which relates to the catalytic converter. My Equinox has just at 84,500 miles on it and the catalytic converter warranty is only 80,000. I took it in to the dealer this morning and was told the converter needed replacing. After speaking with multiple dealerships and mechanics I understand and have been told multiple times that the oil consumption and piston issues have caused this problem yet GM/Chevrolet is telling me they will only help me approximately $200 to help with the new converter. They must know this is what's caused this issue as it appears that a lot the 2010 Equinox had the exact same issue and problems. I would really like for GM/Chevrolet to fix the converter on my Equinox at 100% their cost as it has had multiple other issues including transmission (covered under a bulletin listed on your site here), camshaft actuator (covered under a bulletin listed on your site here), etc. The converter per quotes are anywhere from $600-$1,200 which is a lot of money for an issue that was caused by the oil consumption issue they know about, but have to monitor first before they will fix it.

- Crawford, GA, USA

problem #78

Sep 152015


  • 123,367 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. The contact stated that while driving, there was an abnormal noise coming from the engine. The contact discovered that the oil levels in the vehicle were very low. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed the cause of the failure was due to excessive oil consumption. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 123,367.

- Mechanic Valley, ME, USA

problem #77

Nov 152015


  • 106,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. The contact stated that shortly after refueling the vehicle, the service engine warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who indicated that the fuel pump assembly fractured prematurely causing a failure. The dealer diagnosed that the fuel pump assembly needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 106,000. Updated 1/20/16

- Columbus, NJ, USA

problem #76

Oct 172015


  • 76,000 miles


I bought this vehicle used and one month later ck engine light comes on and stays on while driving the type of roadway is either hwy. Or in town at any speeds. Had checked, trouble code P0013 cam act. Sensor. Found recall #11195A on line. Cheverlot refusing to acknowledge this even though recall is for same year, same vehicle and, same engine.

- Shreveport, LA, USA

problem #75

Oct 202015


  • 136,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While driving approximately 35 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle restarted, but the failure recurred on multiple occasions. While accelerating from a stop, the vehicle accelerated and immediately stopped responding in the middle of an intersection. The contact continued to depress the accelerator pedal, and the vehicle jerked and began to accelerate. After that incident, the vehicle would no longer reverse or shift from third to fourth gear. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 136,000.

- New London, NC, USA

problem #74

Oct 032015


  • 51,000 miles
While driving the car stalled out. The check engine light came on and the possible cause was a cam shaft sensor. But on further investigation it was because the car was low on oil. There was no indication from the vehicle information system that the car did not have any oil. It just stopped without warning three times, always after slowing down for a turn. This is very unsafe, I was almost hit twice!

- Dayton, OH, USA

problem #73

Jul 242015


  • 48,434 miles


After taking the car out from a stop sign, the steering wheel locked and could not accelerate. The car started to slow down. I was able to put the gear on park once the car stalled and turn off the ignition. I then turned on the ignition and everything was normal. Once I reached my destination I turned off and on the ignition and check engine light came on. Upon taking to the mechanic they found out the cam sensor had to be replaced.

- New Providence, NJ, USA

problem #72

May 182015


  • 45,136 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. While driving at 30 mph, the service engine light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed that the timing chain fractured. The vehicle was repaired, but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 45,136.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #71

Jun 142015


  • 63,803 miles
For a third time in 2 weeks, the vehicle loss power and failed to maintain speed. It would not even move forward when given gas even though the engine continued running. This time, the check engine light did not come on. The vehicle had to be turned off, then re-started, for movement to be regained. This happened in heavy traffic and blocked a lane for a couple of minutes, until I could pull off the road. This happened on previous occasions at highway speed too, but, we had more recently replaced the throttle body unit, as this was a prior diagnosis for this failure condition. Now, we're not sure the vehicle can be trusted at all.

- Columbia , MD, USA

problem #70

Aug 152014


  • 75,000 miles
Initially the issue started with rough idling of the car, engine ticking, and engine stalling. After indicating this to the dealership, they informed me that the ECM needed to be reprogrammed because the oil life indicator was not properly calibrated causing the system to think that there was more life on the oil than there actually was. The engine balance chain eventually broke while on the interstate (55 mph), due to improper oil lubrication. The fuel pump, water pump, and a few other items had to be replaced due to the damage caused when the chain broke. I notified the dealership once again after engine ticking/ rough idling re-occured and they indicated to me that the engine ticking during startup was normal. The engine ticking progressed to becoming a constant noise. I noticed that when I took the oil in for an oil change, approximately 2000 miles in, that the oil dipstick would come up completely dry. This indicated the vehicle was experiencing an excessive amount of oil consumption. I took the vehicle to the dealership who indicated that pistons had to be replaced and the exhaust manifold was cracked. This indicated that the engine was observing some excessive amount of heat most likely due to the oil consumption issue. During these issues, no service engine light ever came on. The car had to be taken back to the dealership after the service engine light came on which indicated that the cam shaft actuator solenoids and catalytic converter needed to be replaced. The catalytic converter most likely failed due oil seeping into the exhaust which coated the ceramic substrate & the excessive heat experienced by the engine (as indicated by the cracked manifold) damaged the ceramic substrate. Oil consumption leads to excessive heat from the engine which can be a fire hazard. Engine stalling due to oil consumption leads to crash safety issues.

- Hamden, CT, USA

problem #69

Jun 012015


  • 105,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Equinox. The contact stated that the vehicle was idling extremely rough and then the vehicle stalled without warning. The failure recurred multiple times. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer. The technician diagnosed that the cam shaft actuator solenoid needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure and provided no remedy. The approximate failure mileage was 105,000.

- Spring, TX, USA

problem #68

Nov 142014


  • 70,000 miles
I was driving and all of a sudden, the check engine light came on and "reduced engine power" message appeared. You are at highway speed and suddenly you can only go 30 miles an hour no matter how much accelerator is depressed. After pulling over at the first available safe area, turning off the car and restarting seemed to reset the car so it was able to proceed. This continued to happen until I attempted to clean the throttle body. The throttle body wasn't operating correctly. Cleaning it did stop the "reduced engine power" message. This car also burns oil, no leaks, but you need a quart or two of dexos oil a month. GM seems to think this is normal. Also the car stalls as you reduce speed, like coming to a traffic light. It works fine for awhile, but on certain days, it stalls every time you slow down. The check engine light points to a gas pedal switch.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #67

Apr 302015


  • 55,000 miles
In February 2015 the throttle body was replaced/repaired due to reduced engine power and stalling while driving. Although no longer under warranty, Chevrolet picked up the repair cost. Since the repair, there has been hesitation in acceleration. More recently there has been loud engine noise (sounds lile a diesel engine), rough idling at a stop & hesitation when turning off the vehicle. It sounds and feels like the engine is going to fall out. The check engine light has come on 2X. I will be scheduling service.

- Franklinville , NJ, USA

problem #66

May 202015


  • 114,000 miles
I am a taxi cab driver I was driving with my customer suddenly car stopped then I start again and few miles later I had engine power reduced sigh on than engine check light and stability truck light came on car slowed to ten mph I tried to speed up but gas pedal was not responding if this happens to me on highway with 60-66 mph speed some one would run over

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #65

Apr 102015


  • 45,000 miles
While driving my 2011 Equinox the car seems to intermittently misfire, causing the whole car to shake. Some days the car seems to run fine, some days it runs badly. Sometimes the engine light comes on, sometimes the check stabilitrac light comes on. Sometimes the car runs fine and no light comes on. The problem seems to be getting worse and happens more frequently. In the last week the car has started to run for 3-5 seconds after shutting off the ignition. It also has begun to run very rough and almost stall, but not every time I drive it.

- Mineral Wells, WV, USA

problem #64

Apr 022015

Equinox 4-cyl

  • 162,000 miles
I was driving and came to a smooth stop at a red light and as the vehicle came to a stop, the RPM gauge needle fell below 1 and then kept lowering and the engine shook and jostled and the car engine died. All interior electronics were still working. I had to put the car into park in order to get it to start up again. It did this later while reversing. And now it just seems to do this anytime I come to a stop at a light, stop sign, anytime really. Something I found perplexing was that if I put it into park, it idles smooth. Take it out of park, it idles rough again and will stall. The information panel between the gauges says to service stabili trak. Last night, the engine overheated and coolant exploded from the engine. I have no clue what to do with this car. I have it financed and if it isn't repairable, ill be stuck with no car and no ride to work, but still have to find a way to make a car payment. I've been reading all over on different car forums and apparently this is a very common problem with other Chevy Equinox owners. First it starts idling rough, then it starts stalling out, some people have even had it stall out while on the highway, and then one guy even had the engine catch on fire. He luckily jumped out of his vehicle just in time to avoid his own death. All of them describing the same issues my Equinox is having. The mileage seems to be irrelevant as far as this goes. Some of them had 30,000 miles, some had less than 5,000 miles. Some had 100,000 miles. Some of them took it to the dealer, and the dealership replaced cam shaft stuff. That sometimes fixed the issue, sometimes not. It just seems like there is definitely something wrong with this vehicle. Like something was wrong in production. Please help!!! I have children. What should I do?

- Toledo, OH, USA

problem #63

Mar 242015

Equinox 4-cyl

  • 71,018 miles
A three occasions I have sat a stop light with the car idling, with a rough sounding idle, the car sounding like it was going to stall. On the third occasion, it actually did stall with me needing to restart (which luckily it did) as traffic was bearing down from behind on an early morning commute. I took the car to get serviced within the next two days, with the mechanic telling me that car was dangerously low on oil. I was shocked and surprised to hear this, as I am diligent about getting my oil changed on time. The oil was changed only 3 months prior and the mechanic said it was 3 quarts low on oil!! after hearing this, I've researched and found that this has been a major issue for people with similar year model equinoxes. Scary as I felt helpless sitting stalled in heavy morning traffic. Lucky I wasn't hit!

- Horsham, PA, USA

problem #62

Mar 052015

Equinox 4-cyl

  • 50,700 miles
Discovered vehicle using around 2 quarts of oil in between oil changes. It was 200 miles short of next oil change. Added the oil, drove approx. 500 miles and it was 1/2 qt. Short. GM says normal to use 1 quart in between. This is crazy. We have began the oil consumption test with photos documenting. When we had the oil changed at a dealer the oil was way overfilled.

- Sparta, NC, USA

problem #61

Aug 042014


  • 82,000 miles
1.while driving in nashville for work the first occurrence started with check engine light. Moments later check traction control warning popped up and immediately after a reduced engine power notification and vehicle lost power. Went from 55 to 30 mph in seconds. I have no clue how this did not cause a wreck in the heavy traffic. I took the vehicle to the dealership I purchased it from ([xxx] in clarksville, tn) and they told me it was a loose timing chain and that they fixed it. 2.4,000 miles later while working all the same messages popped up and the car completely stalled and would not restart on a busy bypass. Vehicle would not restart and I paid to have it towed. This time the dealership said they had to replace the entire timing chain assembly and a housing due to it being destroyed. It was covered by warranty again and they serviced it for free. 3.vehicle ran great for 3600 miles and again the same message sequence occurred. The car fortunately continued to run and I drove it straight to the dealership. I insisted it was a safety hazard and that I wanted to trade it in immediately. 2 hours later they offered me $7,000 under blue book because of engine problems. This was very funny of course since it is Chevrolet and the dealerships fault for selling such a lemon. I told them it was under warranty. To fix it again for free and I would pick it up. Dealership called next day. Said everything was fine. It was out of oil and that caused safeties to kick in and that created the problem. I ask how this is possible you changed my oil 3600 miles ago. 4.last week (again 3800 miles later) the car produced all of the same messages and stalled on the same busy bypass. This time I had my 3 year old and 1 year old in the car. The speed limit is 55 so of course traffic regularly runs 60 mph. I was stranded with my children on 20 degree weather with no heat. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Clarksville, TN, USA

problem #60

Feb 122015

Equinox 4-cyl

  • 154 miles
I was driving with my 7 year old son and 15 year old nephew on a 35 mph busy street when all of a sudden my vehicle started shaking and the steering wheel and brake pedal lock on me I couldn't move the luckily there was no car coming at the moment, and I was able to turn off the vehicle and turn it back up. After that I it started up again and nothing seem to be wrong until the engine light turn on and I continued on my way, all of a sudden my on the dash board it said stability check/lost engine power and all of a sudden the engine shut off on me. I couldn't move to from lanes to avoid causing an accident luckily the vehicles on back of me notice my vehicle slowing down and they where able to miss hitting my vehicle. I really do want something done to fix this issue because I could of cause an accident with that sudden stop and all because of the engine powering off. I believe something needs to be done a.S.a.P. before on of all these other people putting their complains end up dead or causing a deadly accident. I sure don't want my family to be in danger in any type of way, especially not in a vehicle that I know is malfunctioning and feeling helpless because nothing is being done. I hope my complain helps even more to get this issue fix a.S.a.P.

- Brooklyn Center , MN, USA

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