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2010 Chevy Equinox Problems



  • My Equinox LTZ AWD was built 06/09 in Ingersoll, ONT, Canada.

    Indeed, windows are all down after holding unlock button about two seconds on the third push, good catch! Very nice coming back to the car on a hot day.

    Love this car! Smooth ride, good handling/accel in the V6, navigation system w/ turn-by-turn directions is nice, vehicle management system is easy to interface with, iPod connector, and Digital music HDD! Shame you can't watch movies on the front screen, only the rears. Only complaints are the cheap plastics on the dash and side door areas. Also tranny downshifting is a bit punchy at times (believe that's been voiced already).
  • Damn nice of you...seriously :)
  • I have had my 2010 Equinox towed twice in the past 3 weeks due to stalling while driving. I thought I would research anyone having issues with the vehicle and found this site. I apologize in advance because I am not the least bit mechanically savy, but I thought it was important to let everyone know my issues as well. The first time the car stalled the check engine light came on and I called onstar to do a diagnostic check and it came up transmission issues. The dealership said they thought some modules were loose and the reset the computer and made sure everything was together. Two days ago, I stalled again and the dealership said the ecm relay was bad and replaced it and said that should fix the problem. I hope this can help others having problems and I will continue to check this site for any responses and let everyone know if I have anymore issues after I have driven it a while. I only have 1200 miles on the car and I do love it, but I cannot drive something that is such a safety hazard.
  • Thanks famcar. I will bring that up when I talk again to the dealership manager (he called me last night, still hope of something getting done I guess). Lots of problems with this new vehicle. I'm with you - if things worked right it would be a wonderful vehicle.

    Are you having the weird downshifting characteristics described throughout this thread and forum? In either case, would you mind emailing me ([email protected]) your VIN so I have a reference for the dealer of: 1) another "bad" one, or 2) one that is good?

  • I've started to notice a bit of a stall in my engine as well. I will have to keep an close watch on this. The engine really starts to run rough and there is a vibration when the A/C is on.

    Right now my radio is all messed up. It changes stations by itself, and the volume goes up down down by itself. I waited 3 weeks for new radio, and 10 minutes after getting it back from the deal, it started all over again. They finally tracked it down to a cracked circuit board in the radio control panel. There are no new circuit boards in North America, so I have to wait 4+ weeks for another one. At least GM could give me an iPod to listen to while I wait! ;)
  • ronwel,

    The last time the car was towed it had an excessive amount of what appeared to be water from the air conditioner on the ground. The tow truck driver commented on the amount because he thought I must have been in the car for a while but it was only 20 minutes. I don't know if this could be a link to the problem but I did have the air on when it started giving me problems both times.
  • Interesting..... have noticed a large amount of water on the gound from my A/C as well...and only after a few minutes of running. I also notice that the A/C keeps kicking on and off, cycling every 30-45 seconds.
  • You guys are scaring off from the Equinox.Should I just forget getting one?
  • Don't be scared. Some new cars have issues at the start....this is why car companies have warranties. When I bought my 2001 Sunfire brand new within the first month I could feel and hear a clunking sound from the front end. It ended up that both strut mounts were cracked and needed to be replaced. Once that was fixed I never had another problem.

    Sometimes a bolt comes loose, or a sensor is faulty. It happens to every make and model of car.
  • So today I was able to talk directly with GM's chief engineer in charge of the Equinox, largely because of someone else at GM getting me in contact with him based on me posting the problem on here.

    Anyway, it seems the transmission symptoms are somewhat intended based on features to save fuel. However, based on what I said he thinks what I and others are experiencing is more harsh than what is intended. So he is having a member(s) of his engineering team contact me (don't know a timeline) to set up a time for them to come down and drive with me.

    Also, back2front I think mentioned that his dealer told him they contacted GM and were told GM was aware of this problem and was working on it. The engineer said this is not true, that GM was not aware of the severity of these symptoms in some vehicles. So it seems the dealer was lied to by GM, or the dealer lied to back2front.

    When I hear more I'll update more.
  • So the "issue" is exactly what I said.. it's a learning transmission that learns how you drive and adjusts accordingly to save gas.

    I'm sure GM didn't lie to the dealership, and it's not likely that the dealership just lied to back2front either. Maybe the information hasn't gotten up the chain yet or the person you talked to just hadn't heard about it yet.
  • No, it isn't a "learning" issue at all. We have over 2k miles and the symptoms are the same as when we took deivery at 150 miles. It hasn't "learned" anything. Just last night while driving it I experienced the symptoms as profoundly as ever.

    Based on what the head engineer of the new Equinox said, it is gas saving features they implemented that they knew would hurt driving experience, but they are apparently hurting the driving experience more than intended. In other words, they took things too far. I'm still not sure if it is just a certain batch of vehicles or all of them, however, and some people just don't notice.

    He also knew exactly what eneity the dealers go through to contact GM directly (he said the name and what they do but talked about it fast so I don't remember specifics), re: back2front's experience with his dealer, but didn't know anything about any dealers reporting this issue to that entity. So apparently either the dealer lied, or the entity the dealer talked to didn't pass along the information to the engineering dept. like they should have. This engineer said all recalls and bulletins go through him, even before they start working on the problem that will end up as an official bulletin or recall once they come up with a fix. So he'd know about everything with these vehicles that is being "fixed" or "worked on" at any given time that is a systemic problem with the new Equinox.

    I'll keep everyone updated so those of you who own these and have said yours is doing the same thing know whats up.
  • I sell Chevys at a large SE lower Michigan Chevy dealership and I looked in the 2010 Equinox salesperson details book which says: Auto-grade braking "automatically shifts to a lower gear while braking on a downgrade to help preserve brake life". It is built into both the Hydra-Matic 6T45 transmission which is mated to the 4-cylinder engine, and the Hydra-Matic 6T70 transmission which is mated to the 6-cylinder engine.

    My sales manager has a 4-cylinder for a demo and he notices the same characteristic, although it doesn't bother him. I haven't really noticed it on the test drives I've done, so I'll take his demo out and see if I notice it and let you know. I will also ask the service manager and our trans guy if they have heard anything about the "problem". I'll keep you updated.
  • I also read about the auto braking via downshift when going downhill. I've actually experienced it a few times and it is a nice feature. The shifts in those situations have been smooth and hardly noticable. This is separate from the other transmission issues.
  • The chief engineer of the new Equinox called me today and he is having the engineer that actually designed the tranny program on the Equinox come down from Detroit tonight (I'm in central KY) to drive with me tomorrow. Sounds like he can even load different tranny programs into the vehicle on the spot and I can drive the car and see how I like it. I've been very impressed with the experience with the engineering dept. so far. And it was just because of posting on here that someone at GM put me in contact with them. Maybe they've already developed a fix and don't even know it! Though I guess until now they didn't know of the problem at this high up level. So I'll let everyone know how it goes tomorrow.
  • Wow, I am thoroughly impressed with GM's persistance and overall goodwill for sending an engineer down to personally help you, especially so fast. I would love to see Toyota or Honda or Nissan or anyone do that. It wouldn't happen. :)
  • O.K. Just towed again! Third time in two months! Can't use my XM radio because I'm never in the vehicle but getting great use of OnStar. This time my 2010 Equinox said Service Stabili Trac. Dealer said they would like to keep vehicle to drive and set me up with a GM paid Enterprise vehicle (which smells really bad). I will leave it at that because I am obviously upset. Interested in the response wallyuwl is getting. How do I know if GM is aware of my specific problems? I am assuming that since GM paid for towing that they are aware, should I assume this?
  • Does your State have lemon laws? I think in Maryland (where I live) if the car is taken back 3 times in the first few months (it mught even be 6 months) you can file a claim and return the car and get a full refund.
  • Fantastic!!!!! I hope they come up with someting they can alert the dealers to.......I'm shocked :surprise:
  • Sounds like you just got a bad one. If you are getting check engine codes that is good, since then the dealer knows exactly what the problem is with any given code. That doesn't necessairly mean the problem is fixed, as you are finding out. So many things are related that one thing that is wrong can make other things act incorrectly, causing a seemingly unending chain of codes/repairs. Under GM's warranty you get up to 3 days of a rental car for any given problem. Hopefully your dealer can get it figured out and it is good to go this time for good.

    As for my problems, it took a while but in the end things turned out well. I'll post separate messages and probably start a new thread as well with how things ended up.
  • Today I spent 3.5 hours with the engineer in charge of fuel effeciency for the new Equinox. GM sent him down from Detroit (to Lexington, KY - about a 6 hr. drive) specifically to drive with us. Very nice and very smart. Without typing a novel, I'll tell you what happened.

    It turns out to be a tranny programming issue as the dealers thought. The person who actually writes the tranny program for the Nox works under the engineer who came down. Everything I have described in this thread and others as symptoms it did, which was good. The driving characteristics were rather harsh to him compared to other Noxs he has driven, which are many. He was, however, able to explain why every symptom existed except for one (but the solution fixed that, explained below). He did say that although uniformity in parts and software is the goal, small differences happen during the manufacturing process (and GM largely buys parts from suppliers and doesn't make them themselves) that can make one vehicle a little different from another. This might be why some exhibit more symptoms than others.

    Without going into specifics, all the symptoms were related to things designed to conserve fuel. Long story short, he put a new tranny program into my vehicle that influences the operation of various transmission and fuel conserving components. It actually was just officially approved yesterday, and will begin to be put into new Equinox production vehicles possibly as early as Tuesday (Sept. 22). My vehicle is the first one with this new program that is not a GM corporate vehicle, and only a few of those have it.

    The difference is amazing! It drives like a different vehicle. Although the symptoms we experienced while driving the vehicle were either new to him or more harsh than he's experienced before (i.e.: they didn't specifically make this new program to solve the symptoms I've described), this new program makes a world of difference and solves most all of the problems I've described.

    For those thinking about not buying the Nox because of the tranny issues described - don't be hesitant any longer. I no longer discourage people to buy this vehicle because of transmission behavior. If GM if full of people like this guy they will do great so long as people put their biases aside and actually give the vehicles a chance.

    For those of you experiencing the symptoms who already purchased one, email me ([email protected]) and I'll tell you how I understand to get the fix. They may not release it as a full-blown bulletin (there are what I consider good reasons for that based on what this engineer said), so it might not be obvious to your dealer that there is a fix out there, but they should be able to get and do the fix (though I'm not sure on the timeline) with a little prodding. The fix is literally a 5 minute thing to actually perform.
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    Glad to hear your issues are gone.

    The 6-speed is an amazingly good transmission, I have nothing but good things to say about it. It's a shame it wasn't programmed properly, I guess there are always bugs with a new model.
  • Has anyone had this happen? Is there a "reset" button that I can't find?
    I went and started the car and the Radio is locked, I can not change channel or volume. More importantly, there are no indicator lights in the climate control section, and it is in Defrost mode only at a cold temp, with the fan at maybe a 5.

    The menu controls, the door lock and Emergency Flashers work fine.

    None of the other buttons on the panel work

    ANY SUGGESTIONS, except bringing it in?
  • Does anyone know where the engines for the Equinox are made? Someone told me they were made in China. Can anyone confirm that?
  • geohovgeohov Posts: 23
    I would try to re boot everything by disconnecting the battery for 1 minute. Everything resets then.
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    I believe both the 2.4L and 3.0L are made in USA (3.0L may be made in Canada).

    The previous generation of Equinox has a Chinese made 3.4L. Long gone.
  • wallyuwlwallyuwl Posts: 166
    I also think both are made in the USA, or at least US or Canada. There was some confusion regarding the 2.4L, since the Malibu's 2.4L was made in China. The 2.4L in the Equinox, however, is a different engine even though the size is similar. When the engineer stopped down I asked him about this and that is what he said. Just go to a local dealer and look at the sticker on the window, it will tell you where the engine and tranny are made.
  • My 4 cylinder 2010 Equinox tends to knock when idling. This especially occurs when I come to a stop after driving a long or even a short distance. Once the car begins moving again the tapping sound seems to go away.

    It sounds as if it needs the "tappets" adjusted. I changed the oil at about 4000 miles and still the irritating tapping. I thought tappets were all hydraulic and thus didn't need adjusting.

    Has anyone else experienced this? Any advice?
  • rvothrvoth Posts: 147
    It's coming from the direct injectors in the engines head,technology.

    The 3.6 liter DI in the Cadillac CTS had the same complaint of tapping/knocking noise. This how GM gets good horsepower and fuel mileage and cleaner burning .
    The fuel pump is very expensive to replace too. ;)
  • vanman1vanman1 Posts: 1,397
    Malibu 2.4L is not made in China either
  • Can anyone tell me what i might use to keep the inside of my new 2LT red of course looking as good as the outsides. the black leather shows lots of dirt and scuff marks. i have been using water and a soft cloth. don't like armoral it leave things slick and oily feeling.. want to keep it as nice as the day i drove it home.
    great car i have liked it more every time i drive it...
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    You may want to browse through Cleaning Leather/Cloth Interiors while you're waiting for a reply here.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • bacdtbacdt Posts: 1
    I have the same model (engine). and mine is getting service for that problem now.
    What did you have to get done to fix it? Thanks.
  • famcarfamcar Posts: 4
    After 3 tows, they kept the car to drive and see if it would stall on them and they actually let the car idle for 30 minutes and it stalled. They called GM and spoke with a tech and in the end replaced the computer system. So far I have had no problems but I am still hesitant when pulling into traffic for fear that it will stall again. My next step would have been the lemon law. Hope this helps and good luck.
  • raj26raj26 Posts: 1
    I had the same thing happen two weeks ago. The radio was on but none of the controls worked and the air conditioner was operating but the settings could not be changed. The dealer found that the "data" wire had been abraded,(presumably by rubbing on something) and had stopped transmitting. The wire was either repaired or replaced and everything works fine now.
  • How can I determine the build date on my on my 2010 Equinox LS?

    I only put on 400 miles in 3 weeks but I've had no problems thus far. Still. I would like to know when it was built. Thanks...Jim
  • All the GM cars I work with have the build date (month and year) on a sticker on the driver's door (the part that is hidden/latched when the door is shut/locked.
  • FOUND IT!! Build date is 9/09
  • anyone know where to get a dash mat for the 2010 EQ
  • wallyuwlwallyuwl Posts: 166
    I've heard some people having stalling issues with the new 2010 Noxs. Here is part of an email I received from someone having such issues (they haven't signed up for the forum), and thought I'd post it:

    I was reading the posts this morning regarding the stalling 2010 Equinox on the Edmund site and have recently become a victim of this type of symptom. The car was purchased on 9/9/09 and has 970 mi. It is equipped with the 4 cyl and is fwd LT1.

    Brought it to the dealer this morning (Oct 29) and they determined that there is a bulletin out covering this symptom. What I have been told is "after the engine is cast some of the engine castings were not properly cleaned out and so the fine metal screens installed in the engine designed to protect the engine are clogged affecting the variable valves and their operation" I assume GM is using some type of sand casting method although the "sand" is not really good old beach sand. Anyway, the repair will take most of the day but have no idea what all is involved in the repair as I did not discuss that with the service writer.
  • Just found this forum and figured I'd share my experience.

    My 2010 Equinox has been back four times in as many weeks for the engine castings causing stalling issue (I think it's GM bulletin #PIP4469E). So far they've cleaned it several times, replaced solenoids, and still the problem persists. The dealership assures me that "this will be the last time" but I've heard that 3 times before :-(

    I have to say that I love the car, and I'd rave about it to friends if it wasn't for this issue. Low speed stalling and having to go back to the dealership on a weekly basis does not make for a happy customer.

    Hopefully GM fixes the quality control issues that caused this problem in the first place as I wouldn't wish this experience upon anyone.
  • 10lt210lt2 Posts: 18
    I have the 4 cylinder. My coasts along fine. I take my foot off the gas all the time and it drifts along very nicely. Mine was built the week of October 19.
  • wallyuwlwallyuwl Posts: 166
    Mine coasts nicely some times, too. When coasting and it is slowly decelerating and gets to a point where it downshifts, however, then it is like the brakes were put on almost. Even with the new cal (though much improved from the old one). Just part of the deal, I guess.
  • 10lt210lt2 Posts: 18
    I did some more testing and I see now that it does downshift when I approach red lights. I find it doing this just as I am considering feathering the brakes a little to stop. My original consideration of this was at higher speeds.

    So, when it is going slow (20 mph range) and slowing down, it does downshift and there is a slight decelleration. I find this very good for me. It is using a small fraction of engine braking as I approach a red light. I assume my brakes will last for a few years longer this way.
  • yobotyobot Posts: 4
    Finally I have an answer for the irregular up-shifting that everyone is talking about. According to the On-Star associate this afternoon, from the highway shoulder, diagnostics test cause is the: Pressure Clutch Solenoid. Yipee! I'm not crazy and I'm not waiting for the computer to "learn" my diving habits anymore.
    Betsy will be flat-bedded to the dealer tomorrow morning.
    I will keep you posted.

  • wallyuwlwallyuwl Posts: 166
    Not sure what the upshift problem is. Most of this thread has been about downshift problems while decelerating. Could you elaborate on the upshift problem you are experiencing? Also, was there a red light by the OnStar buttons on the mirror showing there was an error code, or was it/they green, but when scanned OnStar showed a code anyway? Thanks.
  • yobotyobot Posts: 4
    The problem occurred as the trans shifted automatically from third gear to fourth. There were a few seconds of high revs and no fourth gear, finally the trans grabbed and popped out again. That is when the check engine light came on the left-hand dashboard cluster near the tachometer.
    The dealer gave me a loaner malibu to drive until they fix the nox. Now I'm wondering if GM will pick up the tow cost, since it is their problem. I'll cross that bridge next week.
    Hope this was helpful.
  • yobotyobot Posts: 4
    Update from service (Monday PM): they said problem new was remedied by new reprogram. They will be test driving in the morning. Will keep you posted. I won't hold my breath.
  • Waiting for a 6 cylinder Equinox to come in and the salesman called today to say that the factory was checking all the 6 cylinder engines before being released. Mine was cleared and hopefully here in a few days-very anxious to receive delivery. Any ideas of any possible problems with the 6 cylinder engines?
  • ulliulli Posts: 14
    I took delivery on a 1LT on Nov. 4. So far the vehicle more than meets my expectations.
    One negative - The low beam headlights are insufficient. High beams are very good. I talked to the service manager at my dealer. Since i'm only the second equinox that they delivered, he had not heard the complaint. He checked with the factory and they were apparently aware of the problem and a fix is in the works ( computer reprogram to increase voltage ).
    So far I could not be happier with my dealer - thru sales negotiations and keeping me informed on manufacturing progress and delivery - and now on service response. I don't know if it is proper to mention a dealers name or not in this venue, but if someone will let me know i'll post it.
    I'll post an update on the low beams and on the vehicle overall after i've driven more.
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