GMC Terrain Timing Chain Recall: What Are The Problems?

In recent years, many drivers have encountered problems with the GMC Terrain timing chain, leading to a recall by General Motors.

In this article, I will explore the problems associated with the GMC Terrain timing chain recall.

These include potential engine damage and costly repairs.

Also, the post will provide valuable information to help GMC Terrain owners understand the issue and take appropriate measures to protect their vehicles.

What Is The GMC Terrain Timing Chain?

gmc terrain timing chain recall

The GMC Terrain timing chain is a critical component of the car’s engine that controls the timing of the engine’s valves.

It allows them to open and close at the correct times during the engine’s combustion cycle.

This function is responsible for synchronizing the movement of the engine’s pistons and valves. This ensures the efficient and smooth operation of the car.

The engine’s crankshaft drives the timing chain and is typically made of metal links designed to withstand the high levels of stress and heat generated by the engine’s operation.

But what issues lead to the 2011 GMC Terrain recalls? Scroll down!

What Are Problems With GMC Terrain Timing Chain Recall?

What are the GMC terrain timing chain symptoms

The problems with GMC Terrain’s broken timing chain recall include premature wear, engine noise, reduced performance, check engine light, engine rattles, and misfires.

These issues can affect the vehicle’s reliability, safety, and performance and may require costly GMC timing chain replacement.

Premature Wear

When the chain wears out prematurely, it can result in poor engine performance. The symptoms are reduced power, loss of control, rough idle, and poor engine oil level.

I also noticed issues with the engine’s timing and windshield defogging systems, leading to misfires, knocking, or even engine damage in severe cases.

Plus, premature wear of the timing chain makes stretched timing chains, bringing further severe engine damage and voiding the car’s safety recall.

Note that the premature wear of the timing chain may be covered under the 2013 GMC terrain timing chain recall.

However, it depends on the specific model year and production date (such as the 2010-2013 Chevrolet Equinox or the 2011-2016 Chevrolet Cruze).

Engine Noise

gmc timing chain replacement

One of the engine concerns of timing chain issues is internal engine noise. The issue ranges from rattling, knocking in passenger seats, or clanking sounds coming from the engine compartment.

These noises from the engine were particularly noticeable when I was starting the engine, idling, or accelerating.

Engine noise related to timing chain issues can indicate loose timing chains, stretched, misaligned, and may not be functioning properly.

Suppose you suspect engine noise related to the timing chain in 2011-2013 GMC Terrain vehicles.

In that case, it’s better to promptly inspect the car by a qualified mechanic to determine its exact cause and extent.

Reduced Performance

Poor performance related to 2014 GMC terrain timing chain recall problems can manifest in various ways. 

For example, I experienced decreased power and acceleration, cylinder leakage, decreased fuel quality, excessive oil consumption, or poor engine responsiveness.

In addition, the automobile may struggle to reach its normal power levels, feel sluggish, and lack the usual smoothness during normal conditions.

Inferior performance can affect the overall operating conditions and may call for immediate attention to prevent further damage to the car.

Check Engine Light

When the 2012 GMC terrain timing chain recall is not functioning properly, it can create irregular engine timing. This may result in the car misfiring or running out of sync.

It can trigger the vehicle’s on-board diagnostics system to detect a problem. Furthermore, the problem will illuminate the check engine light to alert the driver of a potential issue.

The check engine light can be accompanied by other warning lights or messages, depending on the specific problem detected by the engine control module.

Engine Rattles

Engine rattles are another problem that may be associated with the 2015 GMC terrain timing chain recall.

If the chain becomes loose, stretched, or misaligned due to premature wear or other issues, many engine concerns will arise.

The trouble became more severe at idle or during my acceleration. Moreover, it can vary in intensity depending on the severity of the timing chain problem.

Engine rattles may indicate that the engine timing chain is not correctly tensioned.

All of the problems will entail excessive movement, cylinder leakage, pressure fuel pump, and noise in seat position, which may increase the risk of injury.

Engine Misfires

Engine misfires can occur when the chain is not working properly, creating an improper firing sequence of the engine cylinders.

That explains the 2010 GMC terrain timing chain recall from the brand.

This can lead to many bad symptoms, such as rough idling, poor acceleration, reduced power, and increased emissions.

Engine misfires can also trigger the 2010-2013 Chevrolet Equinox’s panel illumination, causing the check engine light to illuminate.

It’s important to address engine misfires promptly, as prolonged misfiring can lead to further damage.

Issues with engine coolant, engine oil level, cylinder leakage, spark plugs, the ignition system, or the catalytic converter are at play.

Ignoring vehicle misfires surely decreases fuel efficiency, increases emissions, and reduces performance. All of which can deteriorate the overall performance and reliability of your GMC Terrain.


2010 gmc terrain timing chain recall

How Much Does It Cost To Replace The Bad Timing Chain On GMC Terrain?

The GMC terrain timing chain replacement cost estimates can differ based on several factors.

This includes the specific model year, engine size, labor rates in your area, and whether you choose to use original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or aftermarket parts.

The average cost of GMC Terrain timing chain replacement can range from $500 to $1,500 or more. However, this excludes any additional repairs or parts that may be necessary.

Is It Normal To Drive With a Timing Chain Recall?

No. If your instrument panel has been subject to a timing chain recall, it is highly recommended to address the memory promptly and have the necessary repairs performed as soon as possible.

The timing chain is a vital part that plays a crucial role in synchronizing the engine’s internal components, including the crankshaft and camshaft.

Hence, driving a vehicle with a broken timing chain recall can increase the risk of injury.


In conclusion, the GMC Terrain timing chain recall has been a notable concern for some GMC Terrain owners, with reports of potential safety risks and costly repairs.

GMC Terrain owners must be aware of this issue and take appropriate measures, such as regular maintenance and inspections, to prevent potential problems with the timing chain.

2 thoughts on “GMC Terrain Timing Chain Recall: What Are The Problems?”

  1. I own a 2017 GMC terrain and are engine light came on during a vacation we took the car to a GMC dealer in Las Vegas they didn’t say one thing about the timing Chain they said car was fine drive it home take it to your local builder that you use my wife took it in told him the whole story and they said the timing chain was stretched along with Cadillac converter sensors. Cost us a lot of money thousands of dollars why wasn’t we notified of this recall?


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