The GMC Acadia is a popular mid-size SUV that offers a 3.6-liter V6 among its engine options. The 2007 model year marks the Acadia’s debut and established the 3.6-liter motor as its standard engine. A pair of four-cylinder motors have been added to the more recent Acadia models, but the V6 remains its big-engine option for those who want more power.
The Acadia is in its second generation after a complete redesign resulted in the current generation that debuted in 2017. While the Acadia is a comfortable and well-built family SUV, it has suffered from commonly occurring engine problems throughout its production.
The following gives you a closer look at the most common issues, how to identify them, and what kinds of fixes are available for GMC Acadia 3.6 engine problems.
Motor Mounts Plagued First-Year Models
Even when the 2007 GMC Acadia was just being introduced in late 2006, engine-related problems arose. GMC halted sales of the SUV to address a problem with the motor mounts. Turns out they needed better water drainage because they were prone to picking up and collecting water.
The fix is a simple one that GMC employed. Drilling some drain holes in the motor mounts took care of the issue. The fix was applied at the factory on subsequent models, so only the first year suffered from potentially bad motor mounts that were prone to premature rusting caused by water buildup.
Blown Engines Marred Early Model Years
From its initial run in 2007, the first-generation Acadia that GM produced through 2016 caused many Acadia owners to complain of blown engines. Some owners would notice a gradual loss of power as one cylinder followed by others would stop producing power. Early GMC Acadia engine problems
The loss of power could have many potential causes, including a blown head gasket. Fortunately, the problem usually occurred while the 2007 Acadia still had warranty protection. The warranty coverage would cover the cost of replacing the bad motor. If you buy a used model with an expired warranty, you might want to check its work history to see if that engine has been replaced.
Many early Acadia owners also reported a problem with the timing chain cover leaking oil, which could become a very serious problem. A leaking timing chain cover reduced oil levels inside the engine and could cause a complete failure of the timing chain.
Owners can keep a close eye on the engine’s oil level. If the consumption seems excessive, you should check the timing chain cover for signs of oil leakage. Some oil might drip onto the ground beneath the Acadia, too. If you see signs of oil leakage, you should change the seal or gasket to stop oil from leaking from the timing chain cover.
Another common problem with the 2007 Acadia is the six-speed automatic transmission used in it. The transmission did not always want to do its job and sometimes failed completely. It proved to be a very weak link for the 2007 model. Once again, the factory warranty usually would cure the problem by replacing the entire unit.
Check Engine Light Continually Lights Up
Manufacturing improvements helped to make the Acadia a much more reliable SUV. The 2011 GMC Acadia engine problems are far fewer and generally more minor in comparison with the earliest models. GM corrected its manufacturing to overcome the initial issues that plagued a few of Acadia’s early buyers.
Minor problems would still bother owners, such as the check engine light continually lighting up for many reasons. Thankfully, the fixes mostly were easy to undertake but still could cost owners a nominal amount of money.
A nearly constant issue is the gas cap not properly sealing the fuel intake. That would create a change in the vacuum pressure within the fuel system and trigger the check engine light. The fix could be as simple as tightening the gas cap to ensure it clicks at least three times. You also might replace the old gas cap with a newer stock unit.
Many other possible mechanical issues might cause the check engine light to switch on and annoy you. The engine often will seem to be just fine. A diagnostic check can help you to know whether there is a potentially serious mechanical issue or if you need to invest in some maintenance and repairs to help make the engine run as intended.
Second Generation Has Fewer Bugs to Work Out
When the second-generation Acadia debuted in the 2017 model year, the GMC Acadia engine problems mostly were ironed out. Two new turbocharged four-cylinder engines joined the 3.6-liter V6 to give you more options for power while improving fuel economy.
Major engine problems have become rare and more caused by owner negligence. The most common complaint regarding newer models is a programming issue that can cause vibration while driving. A simple reprogramming can cure the issue.
With the early engine issues mostly overcome, the GMC Acadia remains a popular mid-sized SUV that is available with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel-drive for improved traction and handling.