2012 equinox needs a litre of oil every week, what’s the solution?

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WizardLady

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My 2012 equinox requires a litre of oil every week. It has 250k km on it but this oil issue has been around for years. I know it’s a known issue for these cars but I want to know what the solution is. New pistons and rings? A new engine? If I need a new engine, what engines can I fit inside the equinox (besides the 2.4).
 

2012Equinox2.4Turbo

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Try Seafoam and Marvel Mystery Oil. Prior to an oil change, and when the engine was about a quart low, I'd top it off with Marvel Mystery oil and drive for about a week. The night before I changed my oil, I'd pull the spark plugs, dump Seafoam down each cylinder, and let it soak overnight. The next day, I put the plugs back in, started it up, and let it run for a few minutes before performing the oil change. I did this every 30k miles or so, starting at around 85k miles when the engine first showed signs of excessive oil consumption. My 2.4 would always use about a quart between oil changes, so when it was down over a quart at 50% oil-life remaining, I knew come the next oil change it was time to do it again. You wouldn't believe how dirty the oil filter can get after this procedure.

New pistons and rings WILL fix the problem, but the cleaning does help.

Good luck!
 
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J.Wick

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Hello "ecotec inside"you seem to know your stuff! I've had my 2011 Nox(132k) for almost 6 years now, it just recently started sucking up the oil(almost a qt. every 300 miles), of course being over the recall ext. warranty of 120k! If it is because of the "wonderfully designed" low tension piston rings, wouldn't the oil getting past the rings also foul out the spark plugs? I've never replaced the plugs and it still runs as great as the day I bought it, no misses or rough idle! If I was WizardLady, I'd be thrilled if my Nox lasted 250k after still sucking up all that oil!!!
 
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WizardLady

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Hello "ecotec inside"you seem to know your stuff! I've had my 2011 Nox(132k) for almost 6 years now, it just recently started sucking up the oil, of course being over the recall ext. warranty of 120k! If it is because of the "wonderfully designed" low tension piston rings, wouldn't the oil getting past the rings also foul out the spark plugs? I've never replaced the plugs and it still runs as great as the day I bought it, no misses or rough idle!
Spark plugs should be changed after 30 000 miles or 50 000 km…
 

J.Wick

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Spark plugs should be changed after 30 000 miles or 50 000 km…
Really, I'll have to recheck that, pretty sure I read they should be changed at 100k? I've never thought to replace them because it runs perfectly, why try to fix what isn't broke!
 

WizardLady

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Really, I'll have to recheck that, pretty sure I read they should be changed at 100k? I've never thought to replace them because it runs perfectly, why try to fix what isn't broke!
They can last to 100k but that’s the max. With spark plugs, changing them prior to their maximum life is always best as one small crack can cause them to practically explode and destroy an engine, or they could go out and you could lose a cylinder. You can’t hear when a spark plug is at its end of life until your engine is knocking practically. At that point the repair is more expensive. I’ve had several vehicles come in when I was working as a mechanic where pistons needed to be replaced because old spark plugs shattered and ruined the engine.
 

WizardLady

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Really, I'll have to recheck that, pretty sure I read they should be changed at 100k? I've never thought to replace them because it runs perfectly, why try to fix what isn't broke!
It’s a lot like engine oil. Keeping old oil in your car will only shorten its life and lead to bigger issues in the long run.
 

2012Equinox2.4Turbo

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Hello "ecotec inside"you seem to know your stuff! I've had my 2011 Nox(132k) for almost 6 years now, it just recently started sucking up the oil(almost a qt. every 300 miles), of course being over the recall ext. warranty of 120k! If it is because of the "wonderfully designed" low tension piston rings, wouldn't the oil getting past the rings also foul out the spark plugs? I've never replaced the plugs and it still runs as great as the day I bought it, no misses or rough idle! If I was WizardLady, I'd be thrilled if my Nox lasted 250k after still sucking up all that oil!!!
I apologize for not responding sooner. I don't spend a lot of time on forums. One thing you should check is the crankcase breather that leads from the valve cover to the plastic intake resonator stamped ECOTEC on the top of your engine. It can get plugged up inside. Here is a pic of my 2.4 before I yanked it at about 225k mi.

EQUINOX1.jpg

Pull the hose I marked in red while running to see if anything is coming out. If not or not much, you will have to pull the valve cover and clean it all out. The area I marked in blue is an orifice that some people believe causes the problem, but that's not it. You can also pull that hose off momentarily and see if you hear a hiss. You probably will. The oil isn't burning in the sense that you'd see smoke out of the exhaust, instead, the oil is being evaporated. This problem is not just a GM thing either. Do a Google search on GDI engines with excessive oil consumption. Direct injection causes a lot of carbon build up because the fuel is injected on top of the piston instead of through the intake where the fuel can keep everything clean.
 
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2012Equinox2.4Turbo

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Spark plugs should be changed after 30 000 miles or 50 000 km…

NOT correct. They come from the factory with iridium plugs to be changed at 100k miles. They can be pushed far beyond that as well, but inspect them along the way (there's a reason why this should be done, but you have no idea what I am talking about). The E39 will report a 'misfire' related to the plug or coil and put the vehicle in limp mode with codes that I would also bet you cannot list either.

Really, I'll have to recheck that, pretty sure I read they should be changed at 100k? I've never thought to replace them because it runs perfectly, why try to fix what isn't broke!

It would be better if you created your own topic about questions related to your Equinox than posting in a discussion that someone else started. I am VERY knowledge about these engines, their history, modifications, and then some. The OP came here asking for help.
 
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My 2012 equinox requires a litre of oil every week. It has 250k km on it but this oil issue has been around for years. I know it’s a known issue for these cars but I want to know what the solution is. New pistons and rings? A new engine? If I need a new engine, what engines can I fit inside the equinox (besides the 2.4).
Drop some STP in 'er, worked on all the high mileage junk I used to drive or upgrade to a 2019. Mine doesn't use a drop AND is quiet. Unlike the 2011 that rattled on start-up an sucked Oil....
 

NOX4ME

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My 2012 equinox requires a litre of oil every week. It has 250k km on it but this oil issue has been around for years. I know it’s a known issue for these cars but I want to know what the solution is. New pistons and rings? A new engine? If I need a new engine, what engines can I fit inside the equinox (besides the 2.4).
I developed this modification that reduced my crankcase pressure, stopped oil usage, and did not affect Federal Emissions laws.

 

J.Wick

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NOT correct. They come from the factory with iridium plugs to be changed at 100k miles. They can be pushed far beyond that as well, but inspect them along the way (there's a reason why this should be done, but you have no idea what I am talking about). The E39 will report a 'misfire' related to the plug or coil and put the vehicle in limp mode with codes that I would also bet you cannot list either.



It would be better if you created your own topic about questions related to your Equinox than posting in a discussion that someone else started. I am VERY knowledge about these engines, their history, modifications, and then some. The OP came here asking for help.
2011 2.4 LAF engine 132k, I'd be really happy if I get 225k, like you got out of yours! I apologize, I'm fairly new to this Forum thing, I was originally directing my reply to you, but somehow got in a discussion w/WizardLady! Pretty sure manual calls for plug replacement at 100k, like you pointed out. So I guess the oil evaporates, instead of burning, so that's why the plugs don't foul out. I really appreciate and respect your info., cause it has helped me understand this excessive oil issue a lot better, thank you!
 

Dan-IN-MN

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I developed this modification that reduced my crankcase pressure, stopped oil usage, and did not affect Federal Emissions laws.

Just picked up a '13. I haven't even seen it yet. Trusting my brother-in-law's judgment . Will pick it up and drive it from Vegas to MN. One way to get a rust free vehicle. Will definitely check out the crankcase pressure! I'm guessing the little hole is fairly plugged up.
 

J.Wick

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I developed this modification that reduced my crankcase pressure, stopped oil usage, and did not affect Federal Emissions laws.

I developed this modification that reduced my crankcase pressure, stopped oil usage, and did not affect Federal Emissions laws.

What do you do with the big hole in the baffle? And do you connect a hose or anything to the brass fitting?
 

NOX4ME

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What do you do with the big hole in the baffle? And do you connect a hose or anything to the brass fitting?
Not sure what "Big Hole" you're speaking of, or what a baffle would be? The hose is connected to the auxiliary PCV.
 

2012Equinox2.4Turbo

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2011 2.4 LAF engine 132k, I'd be really happy if I get 225k, like you got out of yours! I apologize, I'm fairly new to this Forum thing, I was originally directing my reply to you, but somehow got in a discussion w/WizardLady! Pretty sure manual calls for plug replacement at 100k, like you pointed out. So I guess the oil evaporates, instead of burning, so that's why the plugs don't foul out. I really appreciate and respect your info., cause it has helped me understand this excessive oil issue a lot better, thank you!

You're good, friend. My goal is simply to be helpful. I have A LOT of experience with this platform (being the 2.0, 2.2, 2.4 Ecotecs) dating back more than 20 years. The Seafoam procedure I talked about in post #2 did work for me. Using STP as suggested by another member probably works too. I know it sounds weird, but what you really want and need to do is remove as much carbon as possible. Especially from the rings. Some people go as far as blasting the intake with walnut shells, yes, that's a thing, but honestly unnecessary for this application. That area I circled in Red on the pic is likely plugged up as well.


Keep an eye on your engine oil level regardless. There is no low oil level sensor on this engine (stupid, I know). If you run it low on oil, the plastic guides for the timing chain assembly will break down and your engine will jump time. Does your engine have the original timing chain assembly? if so, I'd replace it with a Cloyes kit.
 

Dan-IN-MN

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Not sure what "Big Hole" you're speaking of, or what a baffle would be? The hose is connected to the auxiliary PCV.
Didn't you have a drilling error and your intake shattered? I believe from reading your write up, you had to use a different intake. In the picture it does look like a shattered hole. 🤔
 

Julie399

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My 2012 equinox requires a litre of oil every week. It has 250k km on it but this oil issue has been around for years. I know it’s a known issue for these cars but I want to know what the solution is. New pistons and rings? A new engine? If I need a new engine, what engines can I fit inside the equinox (besides the 2.4).
This may help…I have 2014 so could not claim this even though I had the same problems and got it fixed. .https://www.classaction.org/blog/final-approval-granted-for-chevy-equinox-gmc-excessive-oil-consumption-settlement
 

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