Common Engine Problems

  1. Vortec Excessive Oil Consumption

    Leaking coolant from a cracked intake manifold gasket is an extremely common problem on most GM vehicles made from the late 90s to the mid-2000s. Most experts agree that the problem stems from GM's 'DexCool' coolant which erodes away at the…

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  2. 2011 Terrain Excessive Oil Consumption

    General Motors' Technical Service Bulletin (TSB 15285C) could be of great interest to 2011 Terrain owners who've been complaining about excessive oil consumption.

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Where Engine Complaints Happen

Sometimes it helps just to tally up the complaints and see where the biggest stacks are. Use this information to learn about troublespots or to run for the hills.

Recent Engines News

There's a lot of news out there, but not all of it matters. We try to boil down it to the most important bits about things that actually help you with your car problem. Interested in getting these stories in an email? Signup for free email alerts over at CarComplaints.com.

  1. GM is urging owners of the 2021 Savana to park outside and away from anything that could burn until the vans get repaired.

    Late last year they said the van's batteries could drain when the positive battery cable accidently came in contact with the fuse block assembly. Now they're saying it's less drain, more flame—as in at least four vans have gone up in smoke due to the batteries short-circuiting.…

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  2. Toss another lawsuit onto the ever-growing pile of GM Vortec oil consumption cases.

    The Missouri based class-action is the latest in a series of suits saying the 5.3L Vortec engine churns through oil because of defects in the low-tension piston rings. The problem is compounded by GM's questionably designed oil life monitoring system which doesn't warn owners when oil levels get dangerously low.

    In fact the system doesn't monitor oil levels at all, just the quality of the oil itself. So while the engine may be dry and on the verge of collapse, rest assured that last quart of oil is still in tip-top shape. 👍🏼…

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  3. Plaintiffs in the case regarding excessive oil consumption in GM's 5.3L Vortec 5300 engines have switched gears.

    The original case was tossed out by a judge last year, but the plaintiffs were given a chance to ammend their complaints. So they've switched their focus into a potentially defective oil pressure warning system that doesn't properly monitor oil levels and can lead to early engine failure.…

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  4. The judge looking into last year's Vortec excessive oil consumption lawsuit does not seem to buying claims that the engine is defective.

    The case has been tossed out. Concerning owner-reported complaints, the judge found those owners talk about excessive oil consumption but they don't specifically say what is causing the oil consumption. As for the bulletin sent to dealerships, it doesn't say anything about the oil rings and sending the bulletin doesn't mean GM believed the Vortec engines were defective.

    So ... the judge says the plaintiffs don't specifically say what's causing the problem. But in the next breath, the judge says there's no mention of the plaintiff's claims of defective oil rings in TSBs sent by GM to dealerships.

    I feel like I'm taking crazy pills.…

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  5. A lawsuit has been filed on behalf of certain 2010-2013 GM owners with 5.3L V8 Vortec 5300 engines.

    According to the plaintiffs, changes to the engine design allow oil to enter the combustion chamber, leading to excessive oil consumption and premature engine failure.

    The lawsuit says GM 5.3L oil consumption problems are caused by defective piston rings, PVC systems and "active fuel management" (AFM) systems that cause the spark plugs to wear out prematurely and the engines to experience all kinds of malfunctions.

    The problem may be due to low-tension oil rings and a new PVC system, both of which are allowing too much oil to enter the combustion chambers to burn off early.…

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  6. General Motors' Technical Service Bulletin (TSB 15285C)

    could be of great interest to 2011 Terrain owners who've been complaining about excessive oil consumption.

    _Chevy and GMC dealers were told in previous technical service bulletins to install updated engine control module calibration and perform an oil consumption test. This time dealers are told to diagnose the problem and replace the pistons ... General Motors says repairs will be made free of charge based on warranty coverage extended to 7.5 years or 120,000 miles, whichever comes first. The coverage begins from the date of sale of the SUV.

    This is great news for Terrain owners.

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