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Old 09-22-2013, 07:10 PM   #1
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2012 cylinder head issues

I think I've read most of the Pentastar head issue threads. Still, I'm not clear on a few things:

1. What % of the motors display the problem?
2. Is there a safety window? I.e., if it does not happen by 20k will it not happen?
3. Is the issue confined to wrangler configurations?
4. What happens to cause the failure?
5. Is there a way to mitigate te risk? Use good gas or whatever?

Thanks in advance for any clarity. I just bought a '12 and I'm trying to figure out the situation.

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Old 09-22-2013, 07:25 PM   #2
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100% will experience head issues. Make your choice to trade or hope for dealer repairs to be effective. Chrysler is putting off warranty expense by waiting until each and every owner to come in with misfire codes.

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Old 09-22-2013, 07:31 PM   #3
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100% will experience head issues. .
Wow, not afraid to talk out of your a**, are ya.
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Old 09-22-2013, 07:40 PM   #4
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100% will experience head issues. Make your choice to trade or hope for dealer repairs to be effective. Chrysler is putting off warranty expense by waiting until each and every owner to come in with misfire codes.
Is there statistical support of the 100% statement?
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:04 PM   #5
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Source from a friend whose father was a designer of the Pentastar. Not word for word, but this is basically what he said: The Pentastar problem was quickly figured out by the guys who engineered it, but continued production of the engine as they were trying to figure out a simple fix. They had NO PLANS to re engineer a new head, but to beef up and slightly change the already bad head design. They needed this engine in jeeps and did not want to hold it back for any longer. According to him (I believe this is BS, personally) that at one point, the people with the pentastar with the earliest form of the head will begin to have issues, starting at 50,000 or so on from there. The heads that Chrysler is using to replace the "bad heads" are just a beefed up version, it may not tick, but still has the flawed design, but you may never experience problems until 100K+ miles. The engines that don't tick have the same issues as the ones that do, the difference is the ones that tick show the issue, where as the the ones that don't are still bad, but for what ever reason don't have the noise (this didn't make sense to me either.) But with the pentastar, once equipped with a quit head, (even the loud heads), doesn't actually cause any problems until later in its life, and the head issue is really no issue to people who don't plan to keep their jeep past 70-100k miles.

I will say, that my friend is who delivered this information to me, by no means did I have a one to one conversation with his dad, because if I did, God help him when i express my opinion about this issue. Make what you want out of it, but this is what I'm going by. He is the most reliable source I have spoken with, so I have no one to trust but him. Hope this helped answer some questions.
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:08 PM   #6
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Source from a friend whose father was a designer of the Pentastar. Not word for word, but this is basically what he said: The Pentastar problem was quickly figured out by the guys who engineered it, but continued production of the engine as they were trying to figure out a simple fix. They had NO PLANS to re engineer a new head, but to beef up and slightly change the already bad head design. They needed this engine in jeeps and did not want to hold it back for any longer. According to him (I believe this is BS, personally) that at one point, the people with the pentastar with the earliest form of the head will begin to have issues, starting at 50,000 or so on from there. The heads that Chrysler is using to replace the "bad heads" are just a beefed up version, it may not tick, but still has the flawed design, but you may never experience problems until 100K+ miles. The engines that don't tick have the same issues as the ones that do, the difference is the ones that tick show the issue, where as the the ones that don't are still bad, but for what ever reason don't have the noise (this didn't make sense to me either.) But with the pentastar, once equipped with a quit head, (even the loud heads), doesn't actually cause any problems until later in its life, and the head issue is really no issue to people who don't plan to keep their jeep past 70-100k miles.

I will say, that my friend is who delivered this information to me, by no means did I have a one to one conversation with his dad, because if I did, God help him when i express my opinion about this issue. Make what you want out of it, but this is what I'm going by. He is the most reliable source I have spoken with, so I have no one to trust but him. Hope this helped answer some questions.
Wow everyone is totally screwed. This sucks. I guess I'll burn my Jeep for insurance money.
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:24 PM   #7
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Just remember it's only a cylinder head. We've literally rebuilt hundreds of heads from every manufacturer in our machine shop. Hondas, toyotas, cummins etc. The real nasty designs are those that pop timing belts, and cause a catastrophic failure. (a particular 2 litre turbo comes to mind, once you're at 60000 miles you're on borrowed time) Yea, it's a piss off its a bad design, but it can be repaired.
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:33 PM   #8
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Just remember it's only a cylinder head. We've literally rebuilt hundreds of heads from every manufacturer in our machine shop. Hondas, toyotas, cummins etc. The real nasty designs are those that pop timing belts, and cause a catastrophic failure. (a particular 2 litre turbo comes to mind, once you're at 60000 miles you're on borrowed time) Yea, it's a piss off its a bad design, but it can be repaired.
CRAP!!! Can I borrow a fire extinguisher???!!!!
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:13 PM   #9
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CRAP!!! Can I borrow a fire extinguisher???!!!!
Lmao!! That's hilarious!

He's totally correct, though. A head itself isn't that big of an issue in itself. They can be replaced and the problem is gone just like that. But, if the bad head is left untouched, it will, as stated in my last post, cause problems down the road.
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:23 PM   #10
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Lmao!! That's hilarious!

He's totally correct, though. A head itself isn't that big of an issue in itself. They can be replaced and the problem is gone just like that. But, if the bad head is left untouched, it will, as stated in my last post, cause problems down the road.
I agree, a cylinder head isn't a huge deal, anything on the top end really isn't. As long as you don't have to pull the short block. Although for all I know these days the term "short block" may be out of style. Anyway, if it was a 350 Chevy and it needed a cylinder head it wouldn't be a big deal!
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Old 09-22-2013, 10:17 PM   #11
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Source from a friend whose father was a designer of the Pentastar. Not word for word, but this is basically what he said: The Pentastar problem was quickly figured out by the guys who engineered it, but continued production of the engine as they were trying to figure out a simple fix. They had NO PLANS to re engineer a new head, but to beef up and slightly change the already bad head design. They needed this engine in jeeps and did not want to hold it back for any longer. According to him (I believe this is BS, personally) that at one point, the people with the pentastar with the earliest form of the head will begin to have issues, starting at 50,000 or so on from there. The heads that Chrysler is using to replace the "bad heads" are just a beefed up version, it may not tick, but still has the flawed design, but you may never experience problems until 100K+ miles. The engines that don't tick have the same issues as the ones that do, the difference is the ones that tick show the issue, where as the the ones that don't are still bad, but for what ever reason don't have the noise (this didn't make sense to me either.) But with the pentastar, once equipped with a quit head, (even the loud heads), doesn't actually cause any problems until later in its life, and the head issue is really no issue to people who don't plan to keep their jeep past 70-100k miles.
I think you just said that this engine is a piece of crap, and that they have not yet fixed it, either because they don't know how or because they think it's too expensive.

PS - why couldn't they just give us a nice straight six with about 220 HP that was within their engineering capabilities. It pisses me off to even think about how badly they've screwed this up.
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Old 09-22-2013, 10:39 PM   #12
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I love the Pentastar. I think the internet has a way of really exaggerating problems. I have no interest in anything with less than 250 hp in a 4500 lb vehicle. I am going to relax and enjoy my Jeep.

Four years from now, when my powertrain warranty is about to expire, I may revisit some of the issues referenced in this thread and many others. For now, I am just going to relax and enjoy my sweet-ass JKUR.

FFS, people. Relax.
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Old 09-22-2013, 11:38 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by jkmohican View Post
Source from a friend whose father was a designer of the Pentastar. Not word for word, but this is basically what he said:

* The Pentastar problem was quickly figured out by the guys who engineered it, but continued production of the engine as they were trying to figure out a simple fix. They had NO PLANS to re engineer a new head, but to beef up and slightly change the already bad head design.

* The heads that Chrysler is using to replace the "bad heads" are just a beefed up version, it may not tick, but still has the flawed design, but you may never experience problems until 100K+ miles.

Hope this helped answer some questions
Did he tell you anything about the flawed design?
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Old 09-23-2013, 01:47 AM   #14
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Old 09-23-2013, 03:23 AM   #15
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I agree, a cylinder head isn't a huge deal, anything on the top end really isn't. As long as you don't have to pull the short block. Although for all I know these days the term "short block" may be out of style. Anyway, if it was a 350 Chevy and it needed a cylinder head it wouldn't be a big deal!
Swapping a head on a 350 Chevy small block is a lot easier than a 3.6L. I bet it can be done in half the time or less, for less than half the cost.
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:34 AM   #16
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This head issue is a design flaw, not an isolated run of castings or a bad lot. As such, to expect a somewhat different outcome on one engine versus another is insane. I traded both my 2012's as I was concerned as this problem gets more and more publicized, the resale value on the 2012's will get affected downward. I am not suggesting that NO dealer can fix this correctly, but do know one can get sloppy work done and not know it until sometime later.
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:47 AM   #17
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What a bunch of chicken-little the sky is falling bunk.
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:54 AM   #18
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Almost 28K miles on my 2012 (and I don't have the AC head), no problems so far.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:12 AM   #19
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Wow, not afraid to talk out of your a**, are ya.
For some it's a case of talking out of an area close to where their brain is located.
........Bahahahahah!

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Old 09-23-2013, 11:26 AM   #20
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For some it's a case of talking out of an area close to where their brain is located.
........Bahahahahah!

My daddy's cousin's uncle's unicorn told his puppy that my Pentastar is going to last forever. Also, I took business math in community college and did some calculations on the back of a paper bag to confirm that this was the case. Oh, and I checked a spark plug too. Just to be sure.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:31 AM   #21
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I need to replace a head gasket on my '68 390. Worst thing is it's f&^%!* heavy cast iron. I'm thinking about a pair of aluminum Edelbrock Performers but they're $2000 for the pair. That would pay for a nice set of wheels & tires for the Jeep. Maybe 100 for the gaskets & ARP bolts is not such a bad idea.

But at least it does not tick. Just blows smoke - kind of like this thread.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:34 AM   #22
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I need to replace a head gasket on my '68 390. Worst thing is it's f&^%!* heavy cast iron. I'm thinking about a pair of aluminum Edelbrock Performers but they're $2000 for the pair. That would pay for a nice set of wheels & tires for the Jeep. Maybe 100 for the gaskets & ARP bolts is not such a bad idea.

But at least it does not tick. Just blows smoke - kind of like this thread.
Get a good set of rocker studs. Ask me how I know.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:40 AM   #23
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Get a good set of rocker studs. Ask me how I know.
I have a decent size cam in it so good idea.

Pretty sure this is my fault for reusing the head bolts. That's what I get for trying to cheap out.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:43 AM   #24
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I have a decent size cam in it so good idea.

Pretty sure this is my fault for reusing the head bolts. That's what I get for trying to cheap out.
Yeah I have a solid roller in a Pontiac block. Going with a stud girdle this time. Probably would have been ok but my first set of rocker studs were too short and the rocker arm trunion was riding on the threads of the stud.

You know, whether it's a Jeep, a hot rod, a motorcycle, a jet ski, a boat - every time something breaks is a good time to upgrade.

Also,
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:45 AM   #25
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Yeah I have a solid roller in a Pontiac block. Going with a stud girdle this time. Probably would have been ok but my first set of rocker studs were too short and the rocker arm trunion was riding on the threads of the stud.

You know, whether it's a Jeep, a hot rod, a motorcycle, a jet ski, a boat - every time something breaks is a good time to upgrade.

Also,
True.

I guess I forgot to add:

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Old 09-23-2013, 01:13 PM   #26
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Numbers on % that have failed. I've read everything from .5% to they will all fail but there are enough of them out there that someone should know a % that have failed.

How many people have 2012JK's with >15K miles and no failure?
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Old 09-23-2013, 01:21 PM   #27
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Numbers on % that have failed. I've read everything from .5% to they will all fail but there are enough of them out there that someone should know a % that have failed.

How many people have 2012JK's with >15K miles and no failure?
32K here.

Takes a licking & no ticking.

But then again, I have a JKU
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Old 09-23-2013, 01:37 PM   #28
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Source from a friend whose father was a designer of the Pentastar. Not word for word, but this is basically what he said: The Pentastar problem was quickly figured out by the guys who engineered it, but continued production of the engine as they were trying to figure out a simple fix. They had NO PLANS to re engineer a new head, but to beef up and slightly change the already bad head design. They needed this engine in jeeps and did not want to hold it back for any longer. According to him (I believe this is BS, personally) that at one point, the people with the pentastar with the earliest form of the head will begin to have issues, starting at 50,000 or so on from there. The heads that Chrysler is using to replace the "bad heads" are just a beefed up version, it may not tick, but still has the flawed design, but you may never experience problems until 100K+ miles. The engines that don't tick have the same issues as the ones that do, the difference is the ones that tick show the issue, where as the the ones that don't are still bad, but for what ever reason don't have the noise (this didn't make sense to me either.) But with the pentastar, once equipped with a quit head, (even the loud heads), doesn't actually cause any problems until later in its life, and the head issue is really no issue to people who don't plan to keep their jeep past 70-100k miles.

I will say, that my friend is who delivered this information to me, by no means did I have a one to one conversation with his dad, because if I did, God help him when i express my opinion about this issue. Make what you want out of it, but this is what I'm going by. He is the most reliable source I have spoken with, so I have no one to trust but him. Hope this helped answer some questions.
Wow. Does Chrysler want to potentially lose repeat business down the road, considering the Pentastar engine is in probably close to 3/4 of their fleet now? I think a redesigned head going forward vs. beefing it up would be a good idea. Getting people through the warranty period is cost efficient, but if the engine blows shortly after repeat business will hurt big time. Pretty stupid business move if you ask me, I don't think they're that stupid.
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Old 09-23-2013, 01:51 PM   #29
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There is a reason hearsay isn't admissible in court. Not to suggest that jkmohican is intentionally misleading anyone, I just think he hasn't heard the whole story. To his credit he was upfront about the fact that he did not hear this directly from the source.
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Old 09-23-2013, 02:02 PM   #30
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There is a reason hearsay isn't admissible in court. Not to suggest that jkmohican is intentionally misleading anyone, I just think he hasn't heard the whole story. To his credit he was upfront about the fact that he did not hear this directly from the source.
Good points you have there, but his story makes sense too, no one else has commented or offered an explanation about it. I just think it would be financial insanity to beef them up and hope. OTOH a beefing up might be all that was needed. The rags claimed it was a engine design, it does make some nice power for the size.

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