2011 chevy equinox odor
vjfidei

Altamonte Springs, FL

#1 Sep 1, 2011
Purchased a brand new 2011 Equinoxious in October 2010. The odor coming from the A/C when first started is horrible. Dealership has done 3 things:
1) a coating on the evaporator
2) A/C refresh
3) a chlorine tablet in the system

Sounds(smells)like a problem?

Not according to GM Customer Care OR the GM factory reps that supposedly have visited the vehicle. Stuck with a vehicle that cant be driven except by starting the vehicle and letting it run for 10 to 15 minutes before driving it; and that last tidbit is from the dealership.

If anyone else is experiencing this issue, OR if someone from GM would like to step up and take some responsibility, please reply here or email me at vjfidei1@aol.com.

Next step for this is soon to be an attorney, or enacting the lemon law.

Thanks
Vincent
Jerod

Saint Cloud, MN

#2 Jan 6, 2013
My wife bought an 05 and there is also an odor problem with it.. I haven't pin pointed it, but maybe it is the AC unit as well. First 5 minutes in the car are horrible.
2011 equinox

Kansas City, MO

#3 Mar 11, 2013
have experience orders with my 2011 81 knots on occasion what seems to have gone away
ChrissyCee75

Newmarket, Canada

#4 Jun 30, 2013
I have a similar issue with my '11 'nox. The interior odour was especially bad on hot summer days last year. This year, we've had a few hot days but I haven't been able to recreate the problem. Running the AC seems to help the problem go away but it tends to reoccur sporadically when I have the fan on. I have reported the problem to GM Canada and they are liaising with my dealership but no other owner/customer has reported a similar issue. I want to deal with it while the vehicle is still under the factory warranty. I wonder if there is a way that they can clean the vents - maybe it's mold spores or (heaven forbid) a dead animal? It doesn't smell that noxious though. It smells like really bad BO (and it's not me, FTR, I shower daily, lol).
vjfidei wrote:
Purchased a brand new 2011 Equinoxious in October 2010. The odor coming from the A/C when first started is horrible. Dealership has done 3 things:
1) a coating on the evaporator
2) A/C refresh
3) a chlorine tablet in the system
Sounds(smells)like a problem?
Not according to GM Customer Care OR the GM factory reps that supposedly have visited the vehicle. Stuck with a vehicle that cant be driven except by starting the vehicle and letting it run for 10 to 15 minutes before driving it; and that last tidbit is from the dealership.
If anyone else is experiencing this issue, OR if someone from GM would like to step up and take some responsibility, please reply here or email me at vjfidei1@aol.com.
Next step for this is soon to be an attorney, or enacting the lemon law.
Thanks
Vincent
Rosemary

Lake Elsinore, CA

#5 Nov 8, 2013
We have a 2011 Equinox which has started emitting a bad odor. It is sporadic and we can't pin point exactly what triggers it. To me it smells like a plastic odor of some sort. Will ask dealer next week about it. If anyone has an answer, please post.
LinC

Plaquemine, LA

#6 Jan 3, 2014
Rosemary wrote:
We have a 2011 Equinox which has started emitting a bad odor. It is sporadic and we can't pin point exactly what triggers it. To me it smells like a plastic odor of some sort. Will ask dealer next week about it. If anyone has an answer, please post.
My 2011 Equinox LT starting emitting a terrible odor, almost smells like something is burning. Dealership told me that I had a plastic bag melted underneath it. It did look like that when my husband and I climbed under it. They told me it would burn off. That was over a year ago and I still smell it from time to time. I took it again about 7 months ago because the engine sounded like it was ticking. They told me with the fuel injection in that model, it was supposed to sound like that. Now my car is sputtering and actually killed on me today. It sounds absolutely terrible. Plan to take it in next week. Anyone know if changing the spark plugs would help?
LarryH

Brunswick, OH

#8 Feb 8, 2015
We purchased a new 2011 Equinox in July 2011. Had it to the Dealer May 2012 for a smell we had been trying to figure out on our own for several months. Literally smelled like a dead animal carcus. The smell started in the Fall 2011, when our weather here in Northeast Ohio changed from Fall to Winter. After you are in the vehicle driving for about 15-20 minutes, with window partially open, the smell goes away. Let it set for an hour and get in to drive again, same thing. Yikes! Took it to our Dealer May 2012 for this problem. They sprayed a "deodorizer" into the AC vents. SEemed to help for about a month.
Always took vehicle in for routine maintenance and kept forgetting to mention this odor appearing again, but from time to time. Not always. Finally mentioned it on a routine maintenance Dec 2014 and they replaced air and cabin filters. Now the same smell is back and we've pinned it down to when the humidity is high. Warmer days when our snow is melting, raining, etc. It is so bad, we are embarrassed to have anyone in the car as we drive down the road with windows open in these cold days.
GM has always treated our families good, so we will contact our Dealer, Pat O'Brien in Medina & see how this goes.
Will keep a post here to let you all know.
Larry
Larry H

Brunswick, OH

#9 Mar 26, 2015
Here's the latest info on our stinky Equinox. Had it into our Dealer yesterday for our typical oil change , a recall issue with Driver Seat Height Adjuster bolt and once again stated that our stinky cabin smell has returned. The Dealer after careful though & research notified us the we need to install an "after Blow feature" that will correct the issue. There are three parts involved and at a total cost estimate of $1,100.00 should take care of the issue. I mentioned that being a local HVAC Contractor, some years ago, Trane, Carrier & a few othered an issue with Smelly Sock Syndrome in their evaporator coils. Turns out it was the materials that the coil was manufactured with. The Dealers,(myself included) were paid to correct the issue by carefully saturating 409 Cleaner on a dry coil. This actually worked great. Wondering if I could save $1,100.00 be treating my own coil? Not a happy camper, but we'll see how it all plays out. I'll post again when there's a solution. Now, how to get to that infamous coil?
Larry H

Brunswick, OH

#10 Apr 9, 2015
A few days after our service, Pat O'Brien called us to ask how our recent service went & are we 100% happy? I advised the gal of what we were told about our stinky Equinox & the amount of money it will cost to fix. She apologized & said she'd talk to a Service Rep & get back to us. They called us back in a couple days, & advised that they made a mistake on the $1,100.00 quote. The Service Writer accidentally charge us for the TOOLS to install the after blow feature & treat the evaporator coil. How would it be if they only charge us $200.00 to do the job since they have a KIT in stock to do the job? I said that sounds acceptable & we will call to arrange a drop off time. Then, a few days after the oil change, we noticed a green florescent die leak (about 3" diameter) on garage floor. Thought this was a radiator leak. Called our Dealer & scheduled service. David notified us that it was a refrigerant leak, needed a condenser coil & some misc parts. Parts & labor $655.00. So, I advised him Dan had just quoted us $1,100.00 last week to treat our evaporator coil due to an ongoing stinky smell, then we were called & quoted $200.00 for the evaporator repair; has he checked our records?
He was unaware of what had been going on, so he said he'll get back to us. He called back same day 4-7-15 & said they will do ALL of the work including the evaporator coil fix, a new condenser coil & new refrigerant with misc parts all for $200.00, plus tax. They will call this a deductible. They may need to keep the car overnight & test drive & have ready tomorrow. They did repairs, we paid $213.50 & picked it up last night. Smells clean & fresh, no leaks that I could see and now we will see how it holds up. VERY HAPPY WITH PAT O'BRIEN CHEVROLET AT THIS POINT & HOW WE WERE TREATED. It didn't hurt to mention through all of this that I had just purchased a 2015 Express Van for work from them in the past two months.
Thank you for stepping up & standing behind the product!
thesorjones

Nashville, TN

#11 Apr 29, 2015
LinC wrote:
<quoted text>
My 2011 Equinox LT starting emitting a terrible odor, almost smells like something is burning. Dealership told me that I had a plastic bag melted underneath it. It did look like that when my husband and I climbed under it. They told me it would burn off. That was over a year ago and I still smell it from time to time. I took it again about 7 months ago because the engine sounded like it was ticking. They told me with the fuel injection in that model, it was supposed to sound like that. Now my car is sputtering and actually killed on me today. It sounds absolutely terrible. Plan to take it in next week. Anyone know if changing the spark plugs would help?
I had the same problem with running rough. 1st dealership told me it was cam sensors or dirty oil for 3 oil changes. 2nd dealership changed timing chain under warranty. A short time later the second dealer ended up changing the pistons and rings under warranty. I was told that Chevy actualy extended the warranty on the timing chain due to a known problem. Good luck!
John Zeggil

Toronto, Canada

#12 May 11, 2015
I have the same odor issue in my 2011 Equinox. Glad to hear I'm not alone. It almost smells like an animal crawled into the air conditioning / ventilation and died. Embarassing to take anyone into the car. I have an appointmnet with my dealer in two days so I'll be taking these comments with me to help solve it. I'm also having times when I turn the ignition key and nothing happens. Try it again once or twice while holding my breath and it starts. Maybe battery posts need to be cleaned.
Irene

Jasper, AR

#14 Jun 13, 2015
I have a 2015 Equinox and it has that horrible smell also. It smells like an animal has crawl up in my air system and died. It's so bad you can't hardly stand to b in the car. My dealer told me they would have to take my dash out to find the critter. I decided to fix it myself because of expensive shop bill. I change the cabin filter and spray lysol in all the air ducts but unfortunately it still smells. As a loyal Chevy consumer I believe Chevy should have a recall and fix our stinky cars! It's horrible having a new car that smells so bad you don't want anyone in it.

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