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2011 Chevy Equinox Problems



  • CapeCodCapeCod Posts: 117
    I fully expect dealership would tell me my "computer" needs to adjust to the cooler AM temperatures... 32 in the AM insn't the same as 60's. Might also get the old "different formula" for gasoline for the winter months excuse. I've warned my wife... a few more tankfuls at under 20 MPG and we might have to make a decision. I wonder if Sarah of Customer Service (our resident "Peggy") has an explanation why a vehicle would suddenly drop 20-25% in MPG? I very faithfully reset the MPG readout and keep a Trip 1 and Trip 2 record which I then manually calculate. The drop off in MPG is definitely there! Hard to believe I might start taking my 2003 Vibe with 150k miles on it for longer trips. I have a 700 mile trip coming up (to and from Cape Cod.) This is a trip I make 8 to 10 times a year. Mileage has always been 27 to upper 28 range. Best ever was a 29. We will see what my next trip brings?????
  • Hello folks,

    The fuel economy estimates are based on results of tests required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These tests are used to certify that vehicles meet the federal emissions and fuel economy standards. Manufacturers test pre-production prototypes of the new vehicle models and submit the test results to EPA. EPA re-tests about 10% of vehicle models to confirm the manufacturer's results.

    New vehicles will not obtain their optimal fuel economy until the engine has broken in. A typical engine will take 3 to 5 thousand miles to break in and during this time period a gradual increase in fuel economy can be expected.

    A vehicle's fuel economy depends on the energy content of the fuel on which it runs-this has been determined by EPA and others and is consistent with combustion theory. The use of oxygenated fuels or reformulated gasoline (RFG), for example, can cause a small decrease (1-3%) in fuel economy. In addition, the energy content of gasoline varies from season to season. In regards to seasonal blends, typical summer conventional gasoline contains about 1.7% more energy than typical winter conventional gasoline.

    CapeCod, I am not sure why your vehicle has experienced this sudden drop in fuel economy. Have you checked into things like tire pressure and such?

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • The reality is, most every Equinox owner will tell you that the MPG info that is advertised is not even close. I maintain my vehicle according to manufacturer specs, keep the tires inflated properly, etc.

    I've owned by Equinox for over a year and has over 30,000 miles. I've taken it on 1,000 mile trips where I barely leave the highway and it always gets in the ballpark of 19mpg.

    That said, I like the vehicle a lot but have had a number of mechanical issues with it that you would not expect with a new car (I've had many new cars without problems).
  • ray80ray80 Posts: 1,233
    I believe manufacturers are supposed to advertise MPG based o the EPA tests (whether its close to real world or not) . I just reset the average MPG display before starting a road trip I am currently on with our Terrain. The first hundred miles or so I was not seeing expected results. First I found I had in-inadvertently left HVAC in re-circ mode, took care of that. Also Temps were in 28-32 degree range at start of trip , as soon as it warmed towards 45-50 mileage went right up where expected (25+ MPG on 6 CYL AWD rated at 22 hgwy)
  • CapeCodCapeCod Posts: 117
    Car was just in for oil change and Tire rotation. Tires are fine and have never flucuated more than a pound. No way were they contributing to the loss of MPG. Since this is my wife's car I rarely drive it. BUT I was with her when we dropped it off and picked it up from the oil change. I actually remember there was a difference in the engine sound. After oil change it was noiceably quieter! Now I'm wondering if the oil level was down before the change? Nothing was noted on the service work order. But would they actually do that without being prompted by the customer? BTW: I remember checking the oil after we first got the vehicle. I had to ask the dealer to read it for me... Oil was so light in color and only measurable on a nub at the end of the dipstick. Almost impossible for me to read. Speaking of 'dipsticks', it just occurred to me am I wrong in thinking the oil life display also "measures" the amount of oil? Please don't tell me it simply calculates the "oil life" based simply on miles driven. I thought it was some high tech gizmo that measured level and 'health' (viscocity) of the oil, perfect for my wife who still doesn't know how to open the hood... and has no intention of learning to do so.
  • ray80ray80 Posts: 1,233
    It absolutely does not measure the oil level, owners still have to do that (or should like it has always been). The oil life monitor is based on miles/temps/rpms and most likely other I am forgetting.
  • grindingurning. when starting: 13500 miles 2011. went 5000 miles between oil change. Stretched the timing chains. Replaced timing & water pump chains. Warranty. Oil not leaking. Must be burning. I am concerned. Was searching web to find if there is a history of this problem. Dealership was very upfront.
  • CapeCodCapeCod Posts: 117
    Amazing... so really it does not read the condition of the oil. What it is doing is just an 'estimate' based on predetermined calculations. Ex: A 1000 miles of High speed driving with air temperature in the 90's might use up more oil life than 1000 miles of lower speed driving in mid 70's temperature. Here I thought there was a sensor actually "testing" the oil life.
    While I'm revealing how gullible I am... How about the "huge speaker" at the back of the car that takes up useable trunk space. Does it really generate negative 'white noise' to quiet the engine noise for driver & passenger at certain rpm's ?? Next someone will tell there is no Easter Bunny!
  • I have had several of the same issues I am seeing on this forum. We have even gone to GM themselves and gotten authorization for a different dealership to work on our 2011 Equinox. I took time off from my job to take it to the new dealership and they made me feel like I am just a "stupid female"! I drive 60 miles a day and I KNOW my vehicle! They told me at this dealership they were unable to duplicate the issue and sent me on my way! I bought this brand new and have had nothing but problems since day one! I have been told on numerous occasions, "that is how they are supposed to shift" etc. I am fed up, but, I am not at the advantage of having money for an attorney to get the issue resolved or to envoke the "lemon law"!
  • dwhipple,

    If you had wanted for us to check into the situation further with your GM dealership, please contact us at with further information (please include your name and contact information, a summary of the situation, the last 8 of your VIN and mileage, and the name of your dealership).

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • Good morning upset2011owner,

    It looks as though you've spoken with Customer Assistance on this already; if you would like, please forward us the last 8 digits of your VIN or the Service Request number (71-***********) to and we can check into this further.

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • I have been reading about all the problems with the Equinox shifting problems and I am at my witts end too. I bought a 2010 Equinox on April the 9th of 2010 and in August of 2010 I had a hard 2nd to 3rd shift. It sounded like the transmission was falling out of the car. Since we were on vacation I had to wait until we got home to take it to the shop. This vehicle has been in the shop 6 times, had a data recorder put in and our local GM/Chevy dealership even kept it for a week to see if they could simulate the issue. The shop manager drove it and said that something was wrong but they couldn't pull up any fault codes and besides the GM rep told me over the phone that they wouldn't do anything else for me. Well guess what, GM hasn't done anything for me at all! They told me to just drive it until it tears up. Now this is an everyday occurance and my wife will not even drive this vehicle anymore. I even wrote an E-Mail to the CEO of GM and NEVER recieved a reply of ANY kind. I have a 1992 GMC pickup and a 2000 chevy prizm with NO transmission issues. Goodby GM, I am through with you guys. All you wanted was my money with NO help fixing this problem!!
  • mark312,

    We're sorry to hear about this situation and would be glad to look into it further. Could we please have you email us at with more information (including your name and contact information, as well as the last 8 digits of your VIN)?

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • I did alot of research before purchsing this vehicle brand new in 2011 and have currently owned it for 1 1/2 years. Unfortunately during the research process it seemed like a good vehicle with good gas mileage; which is what I was looking for. :cry: Nothing but trouble from the get go.

    The speakers have been replaced, the shifting mechanism has been replaced, they have not replaced the tires which I am very MAD about. They have been a problem since I purchased the vehicle! I have proof on my monthly ONSTAR Vehicle Report. First the tire on the front drivers side would not stay inflated (supposed to be at 35 PSI we fill it every month with air and with 20 days or so it is down to about 25 or 26 and now the same thing is happening with the drivers side rear tire.


    Never believe what you hear or read about a car published by GM! They are liars; to say the least!!

    Now the last 2x we have gone to Denver 3 hours from where we live on the way back the A/C completelty stops working and they can't find anything wrong with it!!

  • When you go on the hiway you need to reset your miles per gallon section behind the steering wheel. I had the same problem I did a lot of research called GM and they told me to reset it set the vehicle to cruise and surprisingly I got 34.6 miles per gallon which was really good on the other hand in the city it's horrible on gas I can only get 360-400 miles per tank. The harsh shifting I got used to by now. I hope this can help you.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,055

    We're sorry to hear that you've had these troubles with your new Equinox. It looks as though your current concern is the tire inflation, correct? If you would like more information on tire warranties, please contact us via email at (include your name, contact information, and the last 8 digits of your VIN with your inquiry).

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • UPDATE: My diagnosis last time I was in the shop (the time of my original post) was that my check engine light was throwing a P0300 engine misfire detected with cylinder 4. Having misfired in history. They said that it was also throwing #PIP5029B that talks about carbon deposits causing misfires at times.

    They cleaned my valves with upper engine cleaner and added fuel treatment to my tank. They road tested the vehicle and no misfire was detected. They claimed this took a week to do!

    Now it's almost a month later and the check engine light came on again. I took it to the shop and they told me it's throwing the same error code of a engine misfire in cylinder 4. They told me they have to take the engine apart and send the cylinder head to a machine shop to either shave it down or find out if it has a crack.

    I took the vehicle in on Friday morning. They gave me a rental car in place of my vehicle as it states in my warrenty. However, I told them I would like to be put in a rental vehicle of the same caliber of my vehicle in the shop. I paid over $40,000 in cash for this vehicle fully loaded (navigation, dvd, heated seats, etc...) and i've been put in a base model vehicle that my carseat barely fit in AGAIN! I complained and they put me in a jeep cherokee but had me return a day later because i needed to be in a chevy vehicle. When I returned the chevy vehicle is no different (base model again) and i'm on my way out of town with a 2 year old for a 10 hour trip in thanksgiving traffic. I've had to purchase a GPS system for this vehcile, a dvd player for my child, and extra chargers for my phones because this rental is not equipt!

    On top of all of that, when I came to pick up the rental vehicle it was on E with the gas light flashing and the tire warning light was on (said the front right tire is low on air). I told the rental agent and he said "oh it's probably just a little low on air, you can fill that up at any gas station." I'm sorry but shouldn't have that been taken care of before I recieved the vehicle? And how dare you tell me that it's my responsibility to go and fill the air in the tire! Not to mention, AGAIN I had no help from anyone changing out the stroller, car seat, other items in my vehicle to the rental. So I had to hold a 2 year old (PREGNANT) while changing out the car seat, putting the stroller in the back, getting my briefcase from work, diaper bag, Toys of my childs, etc...

    Now I understand it may not be policy to help someone, but when you see a woman obviously struggling to get all of her items and her child into the rental you think some decent human being would be willing to help her. No not at Chevy or Enterprise (the company they rent with). They treat you like dirt!

    So now it's Tuesday morning at 11:00 am and I still have yet to hear from the dealership. I have no idea what the status of my vehicle is, what has been diagnosed, and for all i know my vehicle is just sitting in their bay. I've called the corporate headquarters and have been assigned a representative who will hopefully be helping to solve this. My service # is 71-112-820-7939.

    I'm formally writing a letter to Chevy letting them know that I cannot drive this vehicle they've sold me. It's not safe and I have several mechanics telling me that I should just cut my losses. For a vehicle to stall out, be unpredictable, rough idol, and have misfiring cylinders is just an unsafe vehicle to be in. To already have engine issues at 45,00 miles tells me i've bought a faulty vehicle. I will not risk my child's life - I will cut my losses and take the bus if I have to. I drive an hour to and from work every day. I can't afford for something to go wrong. God forbid I'm at a stop light and the engine stalls and someone hits my child and I and something happen to us.

    I refuse to put our lives in danger!
  • CapeCodCapeCod Posts: 117
    Without a doubt you will get a post here from 'GM sarah' but no other support from GM. My wife's Equinox is about 25k miles behind yours. Like many others here... we wonder what the future will bring. Sounds like the future is not very rosy. And we also have the double edge sword of taking a double hit once more people start hitting the higher mileage marks. More problems=more complaints=more publicity=lower trade-in value! Wondering out-loud, I imagine ultimately the problem will have something to do with the 'dex' oil. As a previous GM owner I remember well the 'dex' antifreeze problem of the late 1990's. Remember the mini fiber hockey pucks they put in the cooling system to fill the gaps!
  • sma1sma1 Posts: 20
    Good luck on speaking with a rep. I went in a vicious circle with one and also a district manager who was very unprofessional. Its a joke ad they refuse to acknowledge that there is anything wrong with the vehicle. If you Google "Chevy stalling" you will see an overwhelming amount of complaints regarding stalling. Its amazing how Chevy gets away with this. I finally did in fact cut my loss and trading the vehicle in as it was discovered that the motor was consuming oil therefore causing the motor to loose pressure which was causing the stalling. I've paid in over $8000 in car payments in the 18 months I've had this vehicle along with $1500 of my own cash down payment. All's GM was willing to give me was $3000... Whoopy doo. I look at it this way...either I do this or wait till I hit 100.000 miles and this vehicle take a crap on me after my warrant expires. Yes they were willing to put a new motor in... But you know... I bought this vehicle factory and I want the motor to stay factory and not have it ripped out and disassembled... This is not what I paid for. I wish you luck... And pay attention to your oil as I discovered it to be down to a dangerously low one quart with no oil light lighting signaling it was low...when I took it in for an oil change ut was discovered which helped diagnose the stalling issue. I will never buy another Chevy... This was my first and my last.
  • Can anyone else tell me if they have had issues with their 2011 Chevy Equinox. On Sunday, November 25, my tire pressure sensor light flashed on my dash. I pulled over to see if the tire was low, which I knew they were not because I just had my oil changed and tires rotated they were fine. All of my gages went dead, the wipers were going crazy and when I put the car in park, it would not let me proceed. I shut the vehicle down and then it would not start and to make it worse the key got stuck in the ignition. It has 30,150 miles and I was expecting to keep it until it was paid for........this is my second issue. The first was the cam phase sensor which had to be replaced and caused me to be with my car. The car is still at the dealer and as of 4pm today, Tuesday, November 27 they still have yet to diagnose or fix it. I'm very frustated and re-thinking that the gas mileage part of this is worth it.
    If anyone has any known issues, such as me, please provide the info to me. I am dealing with someone at the main headquarters at this point and I would love to share more similar concerns with her.
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