2012 Dodge Avenger AC / heater problems: Heater not working properly

Heater Not Working Properly

2012 Dodge Avenger (Page 1 of 3)

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

CarComplaints.com Notes: Consumer Reports road tests has noted deficiencies in the 2012 Avenger with regard to engine noise, acceleration, braking, handling, transmission, fuel economy, driving position and rear visibility. But at least it has a cool marketing campaign ... right?


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
54,700 miles
Total Complaints:
53 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (24 reports)
  2. heater core and radiator replacement (12 reports)
  3. replace heater core and flush (7 reports)
  4. replace heater core (5 reports)
  5. plugged heater core and radiator (3 reports)
  6. replace heater core and heater boxes (1 reports)
2012 Dodge Avenger AC / heater problems

AC / heater problem

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2012 Dodge Avenger Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #53

Feb 012018

Avenger RT 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles


In January-February 2018, my 2012 Avenger RT began to experience insufficient/non-existent airflow and lack of heat to the right-side window defrosters and all passenger vents (except the front-left driver vents), creating visibility hazards from ice and fog accumulating on the windows, and an uncomfortable driving environment for both the driver and passengers. During the following 2018 summer, the air cooling effect and window-defogging was also diminished, especially from the inexplicable reduced airflow coming from passenger vents. The heater/defroster had major difficulty defrosting the windshield and right-side front window. In early 2019, I brought my Avenger to a repair shop recommended by several friends and associates, and the shop recommended a coolant system flush and inspected air blend door actuators, but those were fine. The repair shop stated that the coolant/radiator/heater core flush did remove a considerable amount of sludge. The system flush also seemed to be a recommended dealership service action as a "remedy." However, the coolant/heating system flush had little effect on the heating issue and the right window defroster and passenger vents still had drastically reduced airflow despite the blower and all blend doors/actuators functioning properly. During the 2019 winter, due to no heat coming out of the right defroster and passenger vents, I had to wait much longer or assist the window defrosters with paper towels/cloths to drive safely, and the windows would occasionally re-ice/fog due to cool air being blown through those particular vents. Additionally, passengers would have to put up with frigid temperatures, closing the passenger vents and relying on the recirculated heat being blown only through the front-left driver's vents. These vehicles do not have split multi-zone climate control, so it should be nearly impossible for a single-zone AC/Heat system to vary between left & right vents. The repair shop determined that flushing the system and replacing the heater core alone would not provide a long-term solution, and highly recommended to replace the environmental control heater boxes (the left and right heater boxes, run along both sides behind the dash to divert air through the vents). The replacement of the heater core and what they believed to be defective heater boxes costs me over $1,200, but appears to be the solution to remedy this widespread Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep improperly functioning AC/Heating system, for now.

Bad design and improper manufacturing or assembly should not be neglected nor should it allow manufacturers neglecting responsibility citing "warranty time and mileage limitations". Sealed internal systems and components like heater cores and non-moving airboxes that fail to function at this grand of a scale across multiple models are not to be treated as "wear and tear" items such as tires, brakes, shocks, and filters.

- knightriot, Woodbridge, US

problem #52

Dec 122014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 14,000 miles

Purchased new by elderly parent, heat not working approx. 18 months later, did not have repaired while under warranty as did not drive much, passed away without car being repaired and left me with car with no heat. Parked in the garage in winter as with no heat you can't defrost windows, very dangerous on cold snowy days, too expensive to repair and I will not sell to someone with no heat. Car looks new, very low miles as not driven much. Do not understand why no recall. I will never purchase a dodge in the future.

- Deb C., North Benton, US

problem #51

Dec 132018

Avenger 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,243 miles

Heater core flushed 2x had the actuator replaced and still cold air on passenger side. Now they claim it's the heater core. From what I read a lot of cars have the same problem and Chrysler should recall. It's not cheap and people don't have money for the manufacturers mistake.

- Tonia G., Canton, OH, US

problem #50

Dec 102018

Avenger 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles


So I bought my 2012 Avenger almost a year ago and everything was great. Started getting a knocking noise in my dash. Got that fixed to find out that the heater not working on the passenger side is a know issue when I asked my mechanic to check it out cause it stopped working on my way to work. I understand dodge doesn't feel this is a safety concern. But it is. People can get sick. Let's put the big wigs of dodge in our cars that the heater doesn't work properly through a winter and see how they feel. Dodge needs to own up to their mistakes and fix this. You want people to keep buying your cars and trucks then say we messed up and happy to fix it. I don't feel right putting kids in my car when it is cold and say oh you get to freeze. Come on Dodge do the right thing

- Vanessa H., Tucson, AZ, US

problem #49

Dec 312014

Avenger SXT Plus 3.2L V6

  • CVT transmission
  • 43,000 miles

I have a 2012 Dodge Avenger which I purchased in March of 2013. New Years Eve 2014 my heat quit blowing hot on the passenger side of my car. I couldn't afford to fix it right away so with taxes in early 2015 I took it to the dealer to have it fixed. They said that it was the heater core, so I had the heater core replaced. Because the weather was turning warm I only used my heat in the early mornings and if I was driving in the night (which wasn't often). Soon after it became very hot out and I no longer had the need for heat.

The Winter of 2015 the problem came back. I took in to the dealer again and was told that it only had a 1 year warranty and they could not help me, so once again I had to replace the heater Core. Early 2017 the problem came back, this time I was told that it was probably my blend door actuator, after diagnosis they said that it was because my coolant was very dirty almost like mud, so they flushed it, it worked, I was grateful.

Now winter of 2018 the problem has come back and they say its my HEATER CORE!!!! GRRRRR! I find it very hard to believe that all of this is a heater core... what is causing the heater core to be bad? while I have been reading testimonies regarding this same issue I have learned that at the factory the radiators in these cars were leaking and for an inexpensive fix stop leak type stuff was added.

Today I learned that stop leak stuff will make the anti-freeze turn a mud like substance! so shouldn't this mean that Chrysler owes me a Heater Core?

- Randy S., Grantsville, UT, US

problem #48

Jan 102018


  • Automatic transmission
  • 96,000 miles

Heat does not blow out passenger side. Started last winter and defrost would then not work properly. Very dangerous. Heat did blow out driver side after about 30 minutes of driving, but now this fall it isn't really blowing heat out the driver side either. Looks to be a very expensive fix due to a manufacture defect. This should not cost me anything.

- Chris I., Lincoln, NE, US

problem #47

Mar 192018

Avenger Sxt Plus 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles


I cannot believe Dodge does not feel that this is a legitimate Safety Concern warranting a Recall. Apparently they have never been in a vehicle in the cold/snow/rain and were reliant on a properly operating windshield defrost system to be able to continue to drive safely.

The "creature comfort" aside from having warm air only on the driver side of the car, this is a SAFETY problem that needs to be admitted by Dodge, covered by Dodge, and properly addressed.

- William H., Sidney, US

problem #46

Mar 042013

Avenger RT 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

I read a lot of complains about the heater core. Same here, not heating on passenger side. Pain in rear come winter.

- careydave, Harrisburg, US

problem #45

Jan 012018


  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,000 miles

OK, so I have read some of the other comments about the heat not working. Well I have had the issue fixed twice and the first time it seemed to work when they back flushed it, but now that they back flushed it again, not even a month later, I was back to having no heat whatsoever on my passenger side. This is kind of irritating if you ask me because why wouldn't the places have just replaced the heater core like I have heard that people have had done and this fixed their problem. Someone please help me, is it worth having it back flushed again or should I just have the heater core replaced??

- Melissa T., Cando, US

problem #44

Nov 012017

Avenger SXT Plus 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

Another Fine Dodge product problem that is the consumers problem...dodge continues to churn out autos with shoddy worksmanship and let the consumer get stuck with all the expense, and they wonder why people switch to imports...BECAUSE they ADMIT and FIX their problems!!!!

- tymann7, Buffalo, NY, US

problem #43

Dec 062017

Avenger RT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles


My dodge avenger RT 2012 has only 40K miles and looks like I am facing the same issue as other Dodge owners. No heat on passenger side !. I am able to get cold air on both sides. when I switch to heat, only driver side gets the heat. Passenger side blows cold air in this setting as well. This causes great visibility issue on the passenger side, apart from the inconvenience to the person riding shot-gun.


Hello Dodge owners,

If you have/had the driver side heat and passenger side no-heat issue, please file a complaint at the following address under "visibility".

The defect that Dodge cars have greatly effects the visibility on the passenger side. I hope this will become a recall from Dodge.


- Siva M., Naperville, IL, US

problem #42

Nov 012017

Avenger LE 4 Cylinder

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

I have a 2012 Dodge Avenger with approximately 60K miles. The heat did not work on the passenger side. I have an extended warranty and took it to the Dealer for a repair. I was told it was the HEATER CORE. The only sign was no heat, no leaks or smells. The Extended Warranty Company was contacted but was told it was not a covered repair, it was a maintenance issue. I only take my car to the same Dodge dealer for all repairs, maintenance services, recalls, etc.. I paid to have it flushed, but that didn't work, so I had to have it replaced and paid $1100. I've read the same complaints from other Dodge Avenger owners. I contacted Dodge several times and each time I'm placed on hold for hours and once I get through, they rushed me off the phone.

- Alethea R., Bedford Hts, US

problem #41

Dec 282017

Avenger SXT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,599 miles

Took the car to mechanic and was told the problem was with sand sludge in the heads when the heads were sand casted. He recommending calling Dodge. I called Dodge and they requested that I take the car to a dealer and have it checked. I took it to the dealer and paid $99 for him to tell me the heater core, radiator, transmission cooler, etc was blocked with sludge and it would cost $3020.00 to repair. I called Dodge customer service and was told nicely they would not pay for the repairs since the car was out of warranty (five years old and 34,599 miles). I have called the state of Missouri, Atty General and registrar a complaint and also called the "National Highway traffic Safety Admin" and registrar a complaint with them. They have a few complaints, but not enough to start and investigation. They stated that they need more owners to come forward before they will take and action. I recommend that everyone who has this problem call the NHTSA at 1(888) 327-4236. From my conversation with them, Chrysler has the problem on almost all of they cars with the V6 engine.

- glencurtis4, Maryland Heights, US

problem #40

Jun 012015

Avenger 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles

Heat blows warm on driver side and cold on passenger side. Looks like it is a regular thing for this year model.

- Timothy M., Aiken, US

problem #39

Nov 072016

Avenger RT 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,000 miles

I gave my 2012 Dodge Avenger to my daughter last year. The car operated great for me. After about 2 weeks, my daughter complained about the heater on the passenger side not working. It would blow out cold air. This lasted the whole winter. She had the anti freeze changed and the system flushed but it did not work. Contacted the Dodge hotline and they instructed me that it is not covered under warranty. I checked with a couple of mechanics, one in Lubbock, Tx, one in St Louis, MO and one in Houston, Tx, they all said the system was not flushed properly during the time of assembly. The metal shaving blocked the heater core up on half of it. That was what was causing the problem. No amount of flushing would correct the problem, replacing the heater core and radiator plus flushing would correct the problem. Estimated cost was about $1800. Dodge will not stand behind their products even though it is a sealed system and it is the only way for it to fail. I am a Dodge man and I will not buy another Dodge product. My other auto is a 2013 Dodge Grand Caravan. I will be trading it in on Toyota products. They stand behind their automobiles.

- sfcdpg, Biloxi, US

problem #38

Dec 122016

Avenger SE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,000 miles


- James J., West Columbia, SC, US

problem #37

Nov 022016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,401 miles

Well besides the AC fan making a loud noise. The hot air blows cold, at first it was only the passenger side

now its the driver side and also now this means that when there is frost on the windows I can NOT GET IT OFF!!!!!!!!!!. I was told that because they would have to remover the Whole FRONT DASHBOARD that it would cost ME over $2500.00 ! This is insane. This is a safety hazard not having the front or rear defrosters working!!!! So I actually have to pullover at night to the side of the road get out of my car and wipe the windows and most times I have to do this about 3 to 4xs every late afternoon, evening and night in the winter!!!!!!

I really don't understand why this is not on a recall especially since I just saw so so so many people with this problem. I guess once I die in a car accident because I can't see, let alone feel my fingers from NO HOT AIR!! My family may be able to SUE CHRYSLER DODGE . I WILL NEVER EVER BUY ANOTHER CHRYSLER OR DODGE CAR AGAIN !!! I WILL ALSO TELL EVERYONE I KNOW TO TELL EVERYONE THEY KNOW NEVER BUY A CHRYSLER DODGE CAR!!! BECAUSE THEY SUCK!!!!

- Luis B., Longs, SC, US

problem #36

Dec 042016

Avenger V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,000 miles

I got this car used .. have only had it for a year and a half and now the heater is not working on the passenger side. I cannot afford an expensive fix so I am hoping this is a warranty issue.

- jmarcum, Cedar Grove, IN, US

problem #35

Oct 012016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

I purchased my 2012 Dodge Avenger in June 2012 brand new now here it is 4 years later my heat on the passengers side blows cold air so I have heat on the drivers side and cold air on the passenger's side. I am still paying a car note so not sure why Chrysler is not covering these charges it is annoying embarrassing and has my bones aching. It sounds like no one knows how to fix the problem! What is it?

One person advised he would take my whole dashboard out to get to the problem well I am reluctant to having this done it should be an easier way to fix this problem. How do we as buyers get Chrysler to have a recall for this problem there are probably millions of these cars being driven every day with the same problem and people don't know what to do or where to go. I am calling my news channel to broadcast this so people will rethink buying Avengers! I am so frustrated what do I do??????

- Vicki N., Memphis, TN, US

problem #34

Oct 312016

Avenger 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

2012 Dodge avenger, I had the heater like everybody else go out now I'm freezing and my wife and little ones are TOO!!! I just hope car buyers will see this before buying an avenger or consider a Dodge due to the fact of them not address the problem. I have contacted dodge directly but they just logged the complaint and until more people do the same nothing will happen. I encourage anyone who is filling a complaint here to also make the complaint official with Dodge. I see the prices for the fix and it is outrageous 1500 up,I've owned the car for only a year buying from Carmax. I'm considered buying the parts and doing my self but there is a lot of labor to get to the heater core.

- Anthony A., Kernersville, NC, US

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