Chevy Equinox Years to Avoid

The predicted reliability score of the 2022 Chevrolet Equinox is 85 out of 100, according to J.D. Power. Therefore, it is one dependable sport utility vehicle. However, like other vehicles, there were years when it encountered several customer complaints. So, what are the years that the Chevy Equinox had issues?

The Chevy Equinox years to avoid include the following:

  1. 2005 First Generation Chevy Equinox
  2. 2007 First Generation Chevy Equinox
  3. 2011 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  4. 2012 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  5. 2013 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  6. 2015 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  7. 2016 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

Read on to learn more about the Chevy Equinox, including its features and issues.

Chevy Equinox Years to Avoid

chevy equinox years to avoid
2016 Chevy Equinox

The Chevy Equinox refers to a series of mid-size compact crossover sport utility vehicles (SUV) from Chevrolet.

Initially introduced in 2004, this Chevy SUV has replaced the Chevrolet S-10 Blazer and the North American Chevrolet Tracker. At the same time, its third generation has replaced the first generation Chevy Captiva.

Many Chevy Equinox owners are satisfied with their SUVs. However, some are not because of the issues they have encountered. So, if you are considering getting a Chevy Equinox, it is best to avoid buying those manufactured in the following years:

  1. 2005 First Generation Chevy Equinox
  2. 2007 First Generation Chevy Equinox
  3. 2011 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  4. 2012 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  5. 2013 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  6. 2015 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  7. 2016 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

Let’s discuss each one of them:

1. 2005 First Generation Chevy Equinox

A blogger once rated this as the worst Chevy Equinox year. There were many issues with this SUV, including the following:

  • Gas cap issues
  • Frontal control arm bushing issues
  • Air conditioning malfunctioning issues
  • Transmission failure

Unfortunately, these are costly to repair and, if left unrepaired, would cause even more severe issues.

2. 2007 First Generation Chevy Equinox

The 2007 first-generation Chevy Equinox featured a 3.4-liter V6 engine. While it was supposed to be an improved version of the 2005 and 2006 Equinox, this model still had issues.

Some of the issues encountered by 2007 Equinox owners involved the following:

  • Head gasket,
  • Airbag deployment system, and
  • Malfunctioning heater and air conditioning systems.

3. 2011 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

2011 was also one of the worst years for the Chevrolet Equinox. This model had engine problems from interior parts and chains that failed and cracked before the unit reached 100,000 miles. Some Equinox owners reported engine stalling problems too.

2011 Chevy Equinox owners reported oil consumption issues. One owner said that he seemed to be adding almost 2 quarts of oil to his Equinox after every thousand miles.

4. 2012 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

Sadly, the 2011 Chevy Equinox could not redeem itself by launching the 2012 model. Even the consumer-oriented research organization Consumer Reports gave both the 2011 and 2012 models a 1 out of 5 in terms of reliability and customer satisfaction.

The 2012 Chevy Equinox had engine problems, too, including minor and major engine issues and minor and major transmission issues.

5. 2013 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

The 2013 Chevy Equinox competed against Toyota and Honda in the mid-size compact crossover SUV category. Similar to its rivals, it introduced high-tech features too. It also upgraded its functionality as well as its stylish appearance.

However, it had some serious issues too. The problem concerning excessive oil consumption was not new in the past Chevy Equinox models.

But unfortunately, new issues were reported with the 2013 model, including:

  • Steering system issues,
  • Inadequacy of cargo spaces, and
  • Poor rear visibility.

6. 2015 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

The 2015 Chevrolet Equinox was no different from the previous problematic models. This particular model had electrical issues and battery issues.

Some owners reported issues such as:

  • Technology freezing,
  • Engine stalling, and
  • Improperly working radio.

Even the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found several issues with this model.

7. 2016 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

It seemed like things did not improve with the launch of the 2016 Chevrolet Equinox. Once again, the NHTSA found issues in this SUV.

Also, there were complaints reported by the 2016 Equinox owners themselves. Some encountered engine problems, some smelled gasoline, and some reported exterior accessory problems.

Does Chevy Equinox Have a Lot of Problems?

do chevy equinox have a lot of problems
2015 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

Unfortunately, the NHTSA consistently receives complaints about the Chevy Equinox each year. Most of these complaints include:

  • Excessive oil consumption,
  • Faulty fuel pump, and
  • Smoke and gasoline smell.

Equinox owners reported other issues, such as:

  • Insufficient exterior lights,
  • Accelerator issues,
  • Ignition key issues,
  • Defective windshield wipers, and
  • Faulty defrosting systems.

Chevy Equinox Transmission Problems

Problems with transmission are among the more serious issues encountered with the previous Chevrolet Equinox models. Its six-speed automatic transmission has many issues, including the 35R clutch plate.

This particular issue leads to hard shifting into third and fifth gear. Also, it results in hard shifting into reverse.

The estimated cost of a transmission repair can be more than $3,500. It all depends on what kind of transmission issue you encounter, and it also somehow depends on which Chevy Equinox model you own.

There are, however, minor transmission issues that can cost you less than $150. Some of these are transmission fluid flush services and fluid changes.

How Long Does Chevrolet Equinox Last?

Impressively, a Chevy Equinox can last longer than its rivals. The older models can reach 200,000 miles without any major issues.

This is possible if you do not abuse your Equinox and subject it to its regular maintenance schedule. The newer models, however, have a shorter lifespan at 150,000 miles.

Best Years for Chevy Equinox

There may be many Chevy Equinox years to avoid, but it also has its best years, including:

  1. 2009
  2. 2017
  3. 2020
  4. 2021

1. 2009 Chevy Equinox

The 2009 Chevy Equinox offers adequate space, comfort, and safety. Its interior is impressively spacious, even with the legroom for both the front and back seat passengers. Also, you need not worry about not having enough space for your stuff. Its cargo space is undoubtedly more than enough for you.

2. 2017 Chevy Equinox

If you are looking for a smooth driving experience, the 2017 model is a great choice. Its V6 engine delivers improved acceleration which offers convenience to drivers. Also, it has a unique suspension system that provides comfort even to passengers.

3. 2020 Chevy Equinox

It just gets better with the 2020 model, which features a powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. With this model, you will experience decent handling and control. It provides a smooth driving experience, comfort, and fun.

4. 2021 Chevy Equinox

If you are considering getting a Sport Utility Vehicle but do not want to spend too much on it, you will surely get a good value with the 2021 Chevy Equinox.

It offers good driving control and is equipped with all the latest automotive technology. From the engine to the suspension and even to the interior, you will surely have an exciting driving and riding experience.

Again, what was the worst year for Chevy Equinox? The worst Chevy Equinox year you should avoid is the 2005 model. Its issues include transmission failure, gas cap issues, damaged air conditioning, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions – Do Chevy Equinox SUVs Have a Lot of Problems?

life expectancy of chevy equinox
2013 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

Here are some frequently asked questions about Chevy Equinoxes and the problems encountered by owners:

What Year Equinox Has Engine Problems?

Chevy Equinox owners reported engine problems in their 2011, 2012, 2015, and 2016 units. Some of these issues included excessive oil consumption and faulty piston rings.

Is Chevrolet Equinox a Reliable Car?

The Chevy Equinox has earned above-average reliability ratings. J.D. Power has given the 2021 model a rating of 85 out of 100 in terms of reliability and quality. Whereas, RepairPal has given it a rating of 3.5 out of 5.0. It ranked 23rd in the Compact SUV category.

What Is the Life Expectancy of a Chevy Equinox?

A Chevrolet Equinox can reach 200,000 miles without major issues as long as it is well maintained and not abused. That is approximately 17 years of driving, with about 12,000 miles per year.

How Long Do Equinox Transmissions Last?

The lifespan of the Chevy Equinox transmission depends on several factors. These include your driving style, the way you maintain your unit, and the original equipment design flaws. On average, the transmission lasts for about 180,000 miles.

What Is the Most Common Problem with Equinox?

The most common Chevy Equinox issues are related to its engine. Some owners complained about the smell of smoke and gasoline. There were Equinox owners who also complained of excessive oil consumption and fuel pump failure.

Do All Chevy Equinox Have Oil Consumption Problems?

The Chevy Equinoxes produced between 2010 and 2013 are the ones with the most reported cases of oil consumption issues. Their 2.4-liter four-cylinder engines are known to burn oil prematurely.

Do Chevy Equinox Have Transmission Problems?

Issues with the transmission of the Chevy Equinox are one of the most common problems owners report. Its 6-speed automatic transmission seems to have issues with the 35R clutch plate. This then results in hard shifting into third and fifth gear. It also leads to hard shifting into reverse.

How Well Does Chevy Equinox Hold Its Value?

The best model year value for the Chevrolet Equinox is, by far, the 2020 model. On average, you will only pay about 85% of the price. At the same time, you get to enjoy the remaining 83% of its useful life.

You may check out the 2019 and 2021 models too. Similar to the 2020 model, they hold relatively good value too.

Is the Equinox Going to Be Discontinued?

While there are rumors that the Chevy Equinox will be discontinued, there are also speculations that fourth-generation models will be released in 2023 and 2024.

What Is High Mileage for a Chevy Equinox?

The Chevrolet Equinox can last longer compared to its rivals. As long as it is well maintained and properly driven, it can reach 200,000 miles without encountering any major issues.

What Is the Difference Between an Equinox LT and LS?

The standard features of the Chevy Equinox LT and the Chevy Equinox LS are the same. There are only slight differences, such as the LS Convenience Package you can get as an optional feature of the Equinox LS.

Also, satellite radio and a power-adjustable driver seat are standard features of the Equinox LT.

How Much Does It Cost to Fix a Transmission on a Chevy Equinox?

The repair cost for a Chevy Equinox transmission varies depending on the type of transmission repair services you are getting. A major repair can cost more than $3,500, while a minor repair can cost less than $150.

When Should Transmission Fluid Be Changed on a Chevy Equinox?

New Chevy Equinox models are typically equipped with an automatic transmission. In this case, maintenance is not that much of an issue. However, it is still indicated in the Owner’s Manual to have the transmission fluid changed every 90,000 miles.

What Are the Cons of the Chevy Equinox?

Some of the Chevy Equinox features that would make you want to think twice about buying one include the poor material quality of the interior, inadequate cargo space, and its basic base engine. Also, if you are interested in its L trim, you must pre-order it.

How Many Miles Will Equinox Last?

With typical driving habits and strictly following its maintenance schedule, your Chevy Equinox will most likely reach about 200,000 miles without experiencing any major issues.

Typically, this is achieved with the older Equinox models. The newer ones have a lifespan of approximately 150,000 miles.

Is Chevy Equinox Good on Gas?

The Chevrolet Equinox offers superb gas mileage. For instance, if you fill your unit with an 87 octane rating or even higher, expect fuel efficiency to reach about 25 miles per gallon (mpg) for city driving. In comparison, it can reach about 30 mpg for highway driving.

Why Does My Equinox Burn Oil?

In a lawsuit filed by an Equinox owner, the piston rings of the Equinox engine failed to maintain adequate tension to hold the oil inside the crankcase. This resulted in oil escaping the rings and entering the combustion chamber.

Burnt oil can harm spark plugs. Also, it can result in carbon buildup on the cylinder walls and pistons.

How Many Recalls Does the Chevy Equinox Have?

Recalls of Chevy Equinoxes occurred about 20 times. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ordered that Chevrolet perform free repairs for all recalled units.

How Many Recalls Does the Chevy Equinox Have?

There are several manufacturing plants where Chevy Equinoxes are built. These include China, Mexico, and Canada. For the units sold in the United States, their production plants are in Mexico and Canada.

Why Is My Equinox Jerking?

The Equinox may not be getting the correct air-fuel mixture, which causes it to jerk. Make sure to have this checked by your most trusted mechanic or report it to your car dealer. If you fail to have this issue fixed, it might negatively affect its fuel economy.

What Is the Top Model of Chevy Equinox?

The 202 Chevy Equinox Premier is considered the top Equinox model. It offers several state-of-the-art features, which include the hands-free power liftgate, its bright aluminum wheels measuring 18 inches, and driver’s seat memory.

Which Chevy Equinox Gets the Best Gas Mileage?

If you are looking for a sport utility vehicle that boasts fuel efficiency and ample space, you better check out the 2022 Chevy Equinox. With its base-level engine, you can achieve about 26 mpg when driving in the city and 31 mpg on the highway.

Does the Chevy Equinox Have Cruise Control?

The 2020 Chevy Equinox features extraordinary camera technology that takes cruise control one notch higher. It efficiently changes the speed of your Equinox. At the same time, it makes sure that you maintain a similar distance from the vehicles ahead of you.

Is Chevy Making a 2023 Equinox?

Yes, Chevy is making a 2023 Equinox. This model will offer both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive. It will boast a six-speed shiftable automatic transmission and a 1.5-liter gas engine.

In Closing: What Are the Chevy Equinox Years to Avoid?

To sum it up, here are the Chevy Equinox years to avoid:

  1. 2005 First Generation Chevy Equinox
  2. 2007 First Generation Chevy Equinox
  3. 2011 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  4. 2012 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  5. 2013 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  6. 2015 Second Generation Chevy Equinox
  7. 2016 Second Generation Chevy Equinox

While many Chevy Equinox owners are satisfied with their SUVs, some are not happy because of the issues they have encountered. So, if you are considering getting a Chevy Equinox, it is best to avoid buying those manufactured in the years mentioned above.

The key is to check the unit well to ensure you will get the best deal. After all, if you are lucky to find a unit in its top shape, it will surely be a reliable one that will last for many years.