The Three Most Common Chevrolet 2.0 Ecotec Engine Issues. In 2013, Chevy/GM introduced the 2.0 LTG Ecotec engine in the Cadillac ATS and Chevrolet Malibu. The engine was then used in a few other vehicles, notably the 2.0T Camaro. At 230-275 horsepower and 260-295 lb-ft of torque, it produces respectable power for its size. The GM/Chevy 2.0T Ecotec is also quite fuel efficient. Unfortunately, no engine is perfect, and this is no exception. This post will go through a few 2.0 Ecotec LTG engine issues as well as overall reliability.
Specifications for the 2.0T LTG Ecotec
The table below displays some Chevy 2.0T LTG engine specifications:
The 2.0L LTG Ecotec engine has very conventional specifications for current turbocharged engines. Compact displacement improves efficiency, while the turbo boosts performance significantly. The use of an aluminum head and block helps to save weight. The square form of the 2.0L turbo engine provides a superb combination of low-end torque and top-end power.
For improved performance and efficiency, GM also employs direct injection on the 2.0 Ecotec. Again, these are all standard specifications for contemporary four-cylinder engines.
What Vehicles Make Use of the 2.0 Ecotec?
The GM 2.0L turbo Ecotec engine can be found in the following vehicles:
- 2013-2019 Cadillac ATS
- 2013-present Chevrolet Malibu
- Buick Regal (2014-present)
- 2014-present Cadillac CTS
- Buick Envision from 2016 till the present
- Cadillac CT6 (model years 2016-2018)
- Chevrolet Camaro (2016-present)
- Buick GL8 (2017-present).
- Chevrolet Equinox 2018-2020
- Chevrolet Traverse (2018-present)
- GMC Terrain (2018-present)
Common Chevrolet 2.0T Ecotec Engine Issues
Among the most prevalent issues with the 2.0 Ecotec engine are:
- Carbon accumulation
- Oil spills (timing cover)
The difficulties raised above will be thoroughly discussed in the remainder of this paper. But, now is a good opportunity to jot down a few quick notes. We’re talking about the most prevalent 2.0 LTG issues. Yet, this does not imply that they are actually frequent concerns in the sense that they affect a substantial number of engines. Rather, these are some of the usual areas where things go awry.
Having saying that, the 2.0 Ecotec is a fairly dependable engine. We’ll return to reliability near the end of this piece. For the time being, let’s jump right in and talk about the 2.0 LTG Ecotec engine issues mentioned above.
1) Problems with the 2.0 LTG Turbo Piston
When it comes to Chevrolet 2.0T piston difficulties, there are two distinct factors to consider. We’ll get to the first part of the issue quickly. Early piston problems were reported in some earlier model 2.0 LTG Ecotec engines. A large number of such failures occurred within the first few thousand kilometres. In many cases, it appears to be due to early engine defects. The Camaro 2.0 Ecotec does not appear to have these issues as frequently, and many later versions do as well.
Nonetheless, piston failures are probable in later years and models. It’s not a common problem, but it’s worth mentioning because piston difficulties can result in large repair expenditures. Pre-detonation is frequently the cause of piston damage, and failure usually happens around the rings and ring land area.
Because of the intense heat and cylinder pressures, pre-detonation is a greater problem in turbo engines. These issues are quite improbable with proper gasoline in a stock engine. But, piston failures are something to keep in mind if you intend to tune and modify the 2.0 LTG engine. Check that you’re running a safe tune with adequate fuelling.
Symptoms of 2.0 Ecotec Piston Failure
The following are symptoms of piston defects on the GM/Chevy 2.0T engine:
- Smoking excessively
- Loss of oil
- Inadequate overall operation
When a piston fails, the symptoms are usually quite obvious. Overall, the 2.0 Ecotec will perform poorly. You may also notice an increase in smoking and oil use. Knocking, misfires, and harsh idle are also signs.
Piston Replacement for Chevrolet 2.0T
In most circumstances, a piston failure on the GM 2.0T will necessitate the purchase of a new engine or a complete rebuild. Pistons typically score the cylinder walls, and bits of metal might cause additional damage. Minor situations may merely necessitate new pistons and a basic overhaul. Even yet, a rebuild can be dangerous if another root cause of failure remains undetected.
The point is, this repair isn’t cheap, and the total cost of a new engine, components, and labor can easily approach $5,000. Luckily, the majority of the failures to date have been covered by warranty. Nevertheless, as these engines age and become out of warranty, you may not be so fortunate.
2) Carbon Build-Up Issues with GM 2.0 Ecotec
We’re writing about carbon buildup all the time these days. It’s probably not fair to label it a fault with the 2.0 LTG Ecotec – or any other engine. Carbon buildup on intake valves is just an unintended consequence of direct injection.
Oil blow-by occurs in all engines to some extent. The oil travels down the intake tract, forming deposits on the intake ports and valves. Fuel is sprayed into the intake ports with normal port injection. This would help to remove any oil and prevent it from accumulating.
The Chevy 2.0T, on the other hand, sprays fuel directly into the cylinder. There’s nothing to clean the deposits off the intake valves, so carbon accumulates over time. Because direct injection is used in many modern vehicles, this problem is not limited to the 2.0 Ecotec engine.
Excess carbon deposits should become an issue every 70,000 to 100,000 km. It’s not an emergency repair, and some Chevy 2.0 LTG engines will likely go their whole lives without an intake valve cleaning. But, if left for an extended period of time, it will begin to damage performance and driveability.
Signs of 2.0 LTG Carbon Buildup
Check for the following indications to see if your Chevrolet 2 liter LTG needs its intake valves cleaned:
- Idle time
- Stuttering or hesitancy
- Power outage
A rough idle and misfires are two classic symptoms of excessive carbon buildup. Yet, those are common indications for a variety of other problems, including faulty spark plugs and ignition coils. Turbo cars love to burn through plugs and coils, so keep those in mind as a potential problem.
Carbon deposits may also cause stuttering, reluctance, or power loss. It’s doubtful that you’ll notice the power reduction because it happens gradually as carbon deposits accumulate and begin to limit airflow.
Cleaning the 2.0 Turbo Intake Valve
Cleaning the intake valves with walnut blasting is a popular method. It entails walnut medium shells and a powerful shop vac. Because the media shells are relatively inexpensive, the main cost is labor. The 2.0 Ecotec intake manifold must be removed, and the walnut blasting process takes some time.
Walnut blasting should cost around $400-700, however some shops try to charge much more. Remember, this is recommended maintenance every 70,000 to 100,000 miles.
3) Oil Leaks in the Chevrolet 2.0T Ecotec
Oil leaks on the Ecotec engine can occur in a variety of locations, like with any engine. The timing cover looks to be a typical problem on the GM 2.0T LTG. The front cover has been known to leak oil prematurely. Generally, it is a steady seep rather than a large leak that causes oil to fall to the ground.
If you’re in the market for a Chevrolet 2.0 LTG, inspect the block around the timing cover. Because oil burns off quickly when it strikes the block, it produces black muck. Once again, it appears that this is one of the most prevalent oil leaks on the LTG Ecotec.
Another potential problem location is the valve cover gasket. Turbo engines generate a lot of heat, which wears down gaskets and seals. Heat cycles and aging also put a lot of strain on these components. It is fairly uncommon for certain gaskets to fail after 10 years and 100,000 miles. They are likely to become increasingly common as the 2.0 Ecotec ages.
Signs of a 2.0 Ecotec Oil Leak
Oil leak signs are rather straightforward, however keep an eye out for the following:
- The odor of burning oil
- Engine compartment smoke
- Visible dripping
- Loss of oil
Remember, this is very basic information. The timing cover frequently causes a steady seep of oil onto the engine block. You may not notice any obvious leaks from the 2.0 Ecotec with this type of leak (unless you inspect that area specifically). Once the engine is warm, you may notice some burning oil aromas or a little smoke. Valve cover gaskets and many other potential leaks will most likely be apparent.
Repair for GM 2.0 LTG Oil Leak
The precise solution will, of course, depend on the specific oil leak. Fortunately, an oil leak is usually a simple fix for the do-it-yourself population. Most leaking gaskets and seals are affordable. Most oil leaks are caused by labor, which can result in repair expenditures ranging from $500 to $1,000 or more.
Reliability of the 2.0 LTG Ecotec
Is the Chevrolet/GM 2.0 Ecotec dependable? Indeed, we believe this engine receives average to above-average reliability ratings. It is not tormented by innumerable common issues. The few issues that the 2.0T LTG has are scarcely common in the sense that they do not affect a large number of engines.
The 2.0 turbo, like other turbo engines, can be a little more difficult to maintain. Turbo engines are notorious for rapidly depleting spark plugs and ignition coils. Running high-quality, pricey synthetic oils is becoming increasingly important. A turbo system increases the possibility of failure. The list goes on and on. The point is that folks unfamiliar with turbo engines may dislike the extra upkeep.
Also, turbo engines are simple to tune and modify for increased power. This raises reliability concerns for 2.0 LTG Ecotec engines. We’ll have a guide for this in the future, and it’s worth noting that the 2.0T can handle some extra power. It does, however, increase heat and stress on the motor.
Summary of Typical Issues with the 2.0L Ecotec
The GM 2.0 LTG engine provides an excellent combination of performance and efficiency. With 275hp and 295tq in the Camaro 2.0T, it’s difficult to dispute. While it lacks the power of larger V6 or V8 engines, the 2.0 Ecotec has enough to offer. Yet, no engine is flawless, and the 2.0 LTG is no exception.
Some owners have reported piston failures at low mileage. The majority of cases occurred under warranty, however they do pose some minor issues about longevity. This is especially true for individuals looking for greater power from the 2.0 Ecotec LTG. Another issue that occurs more frequently than others is oil leakage from the timing cover area.
Otherwise, cleaning the intake valves should be done every 70,000 to 100,000 miles. Turbos and direct injection are excellent performance and efficiency technologies. But, carbon buildup is a great example of how these technologies do have drawbacks.
Maintenance is essential for every engine, but it is especially critical for the turbo 2.0 Ecotec. Maintain basic maintenance, use high-quality oils, and address issues as they arise. If you do all of this, you should have a terrific, dependable experience with the Chevy 2.0 LTG Ecotec engine.