The Most Common Problems with Chevy Equinox Models

Let me start by saying the Chevy Equinox is a great compact SUV with a fantastic selection of driver-assist features. The model is both capable, highly practical and handles exceedingly well – if it’s built properly. No vehicle is perfect – and there are a number of reported common problems with Chevy Equinox models.

The current generation of Chevy Equinox models started in 2018, when the vehicle got a full redesign. Among these changes included two turbocharged engines – a 1.5 and 2.5-liter, as well as upgrades to the interior. 

Chevy made a lot of improvements in the way of active safety features in the new Equinox models. These included:

  • Forward collision warning
  • Forward automatic emergency braking
  • Lane departure warnings

Unfortunately, the newer Equinox template has been reported to be plagued by issues. 

Many of the common problems with Chevy Equinox models have resulted in recalls. In this post, I want to discuss some of the more common Equinox problems I have seen, as well as what to do if yours is giving you trouble.  

Let’s get into it. 

Chevy Equinox Recalls

The Chevy Equinox was first introduced back in 2004. 

For a long time, the Equinox was an extremely reliable, well-built vehicle with few recalls. However, the redesign in 2018 has resulted in a big uptick. Here are some of the big safety recalls made against the Equinox (among other GM vehicles) by the NHTSA since 2018:

April 2018 – Visibility, Structure

This issue with the vehicle’s visibility started with the driver and passenger side windows. The glass on the windows appeared to have not been tempered properly – and can break into large pieces, causing an injury risk. The recall officially began on May 11th, 2018.

May 2018 – Fuel System, Gasoline

The high-pressure fuel pump on affected models may detach from the mounting flange. The pump can cause damage to the high-pressure fuel line, creating a fuel leak and a fire risk. As of this writing, the manufacturer has not provided a notification schedule for this recall.

August 2018 – Service Brakes, Hydraulic

Brakes have been one of the most common problems with Chevy Equinox models. 

The rear brake caliper pistons have shown evidence of having insufficient coating, causing the formation of gas bubbles. This can potentially reduce the braking performance of the Equinox and increase the risk of a crash. Owners of affected vehicles may have their brake system bled by an authorized dealer free of charge. As of this writing, no notification schedule has been made by GM.

March 2019 – Seats

The rear right seat on affected Equinox models may have inadequate welds on the head restraint bracket. If a crash occurs, these welds may increase the risk of injury. GM will replace the rear right seat setback frame free of charge. The recall for this issue officially began on April 15th, 2019.

September 2019 – Fuel System, Gasoline

Certain 2019-2020 Equinox models were recalled by GM due to issues with the fuel tanks, of which may have been manufactured with an improper sealed seam. This allows the fuel to leak near the inlet. 

GM will notify affected owners and replace the fuel tank free of charge. No schedule has been made.

October 2019 – Service Brakes, Hydraulic

Certain 2020 Equinox models were recalled due to defective rear brake calipers, which may have been manufactured with improper lubricant. This can cause the rubber seals to swell and the brakes to drag. 

GM will notify affected owners, and authorized dealers will replace rear brake calipers, which includes the brake hose gasket, brake fluid, and wheel hub lubricant.

October 2020 – Power Train

Certain 2018-2020 Equinox models were recalled due to the start/stop accumulator endcaps possibly missing bolts. Missing bolts on this start/stop accumulator endcap could potentially result in an oil leak from the transmission – which may lead to loss of propulsion. In addition to the risk of crashing, the fluid leak and presence of ignition increases the risk of fire. 

GM will notify affected owners – and authorized dealers will inspect the start/stop transmission accumulator and replace if any bolts are missing.

December 2020 – Seat Belts

Certain 2020 Equinox models were recalled due to incorrect bolts being used at one or more fastening locations that secure the seat belt to the vehicle. If improper bolts were used, the seat belt may not be properly attached. 

GM will notify affected owners, and authorized dealers will replace the improper bolts.

August 2021 – Tires

Certain 2021-2022 Equinox models equipped with Hankook tires were recalled due to an insufficient amount of curative agent. This defect in the manufacturing process can lead to tread separation, which decreased control and increases the risk of a crash.

Authorized dealers will inspect DOT numbers on the tires and replace any affected models.

Common Problems with Chevy Equinox Models We’ve Seen

In addition to recalls, Chevy Equinox problems range from smaller issues to life-threatening. We’ve seen our fair share of issues with this model as lemon law attorneys in California. Here are some of the big ones:

Heater Problems

We’ve seen several instances in which Chevy Equinox heaters blast cold air instead of warm. 

In regards to California lemon law, this defect can be a “substantial” defect that impacts the consumer’s use or value. 

In California – where Cline APC is located – this issue is viewed as substantial. Recurring issues with a vehicle’s irreparable heater have a good chance of warranting a lemon. 

It’s not impossible for heater issues to result in a valid lemon claim. You just need a skilled lemon attorney to fight the uphill battle. 

Overconsumption of Oil

One of the most common problems with Chevy Equinox models is excessive oil consumption. 

This is another one that may not be seen as a “substantial” defect. Many owners notice they have to take their vehicle in for oil changes more frequently than they should. Some have reported doing so two to three times more often than other vehicles. 

Legal action was taken on 2010-2013 models, but newer models still face the issue. 

This defect can, and will, cause serious damage to the engine. Have you had repeated problems with the oil consumption of your Chevy Equinox? If so, you may be entitled to benefits under California lemon law. 

Faulty ABS System

This is a big one. Defective brakes are likely a surefire “substantial” defect. Equinox drivers have reported ABS issues along the lines of the brakes applying too slowly, too quickly, or not at all. Any of these issues could lead to serious accidents, or death. 

These braking issues were primary evidence that led to the recall of the 2018-2019 models. If you’ve got a new Equinox model that is experiencing ongoing braking issues, it’s time to seek out a lemon law attorney.

Transmission Failure

The Chevy Equinox transmission does not have a glowing reputation. Transmission issues have plagued the model for years – with the 2010 Equinox being the worst culprit. 

Issues with the transmission are extremely serious and should be dealt with accordingly. Owners report spluttering, jerking, and failing – typically after 50,000 miles. Now, a vehicle must still be covered under the manufacturer or dealer warranty when issues first arise. Most Chevy transmission warranties are good for 5 years or 60,000 miles, sometimes longer.  

If you detect ANY issues whatsoever with your Chevy Equinox’s transmission, report it to the manufacturer immediately. As long as the problem is first recorded before the warranty expires, you can still seek benefits under CA lemon law. 

Electrical Problems

Electrical issues are one of the most common problems with Chevy Equinox models. Electricity in a car is something most of us take for granted, until it doesn’t work. We’ve seen these issues range from the vehicle not starting to the lights flashing improperly. 

We’ve even heard of problems with fires starting from faulty wiring. 

Any issues with the electrical system of your vehicle can be substantial defects. If you have had ongoing problems with yours, don’t waste any time in reaching out to a professional attorney.

What to do if Your Chevy Equinox is Defective?

Are you experiencing one of the many mechanical problems with Chevy Equinox models?

You have options. 

As professional lemon law attorneys in California, we recommend getting in touch with the manufacturer immediately to begin the repair process. In the state of California, your defective vehicle can be deemed a lemon if:

  • The manufacturer has made two or more unsuccessful attempts to fix a warranty-covered problem.
  • The vehicle has been out of service for more than 30 total days for warranty-covered repairs.
  • The defect(s) were not a result of driver abuse.

Keep in mind, the worst thing you can do with a defective vehicle is wait. 

As long as it is still covered under warranty, you need to get in contact with the manufacturer right away. If the warranty expires before you report the issue, there is a good chance you will not be able to seek fair compensation.

The Next Steps

We’ve dealt with many of the common problems with Chevy Equinox models. 

Whether you think you have a lemon or just want some more answers about the process, please do not hesitate to reach out. The automaker has no interest in compensating you for a defective vehicle; they have no problem steering you astray. 

Chances are, you probably haven’t experienced manufacturer-related defects with your vehicle before. We are always happy to help point consumers in the right direction. At the end of the day, we want the same thing that you do: full compensation for being sold a faulty vehicle. For any questions or concerns about Chevrolet Equinox problems, give us a call at 888-982-6915 or send an email to We’ll be in touch shortly.

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