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Old 06-28-2019, 05:04 PM
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What’s year models have the bad head issue?

Bought my son a 2014 with about 110k on it. Late last year we had check engine light come on. Without going into detail with everything we checked or replaced it is the bad head on the left side of the engine. We are getting it fixed and I’m going to get rid of it. My son is set on a Jeep though. So what year model did this this problem stop? Or is just an ongoing issue. Not buying him a new one. But don’t want to get screwed again on one of these. Trying to talk him into a truck but not much luck. Thanks for the info.

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Old 06-28-2019, 05:55 PM   #2
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2011, 2012 and 2013 were the years that the Pentastar had the warranty extended on them I believe.

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Old 06-28-2019, 06:45 PM   #3
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Funny enough, the 2013s are a great year to get. my January 2013 does not have the recall head and no knocking at 80k so far. 2014s have the oil cooler leak problem. And I haven't heard anything from the 2015s and newer.
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Old 06-28-2019, 07:05 PM   #4
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I would say all of them are affected, yearly years more, later years less.
Imo if you already replaced the head and assuming no other issues why to get rid of it?
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Old 06-28-2019, 09:47 PM   #5
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Funny enough, the 2013s are a great year to get. my January 2013 does not have the recall head and no knocking at 80k so far. 2014s have the oil cooler leak problem. And I haven't heard anything from the 2015s and newer.
^^^Agree. But, my Grandsons 2016 JKUHR just had a left head replaced at 40K. There was another member just recently reported that his 2017 just had a left head replaced. So it looks like the possibility continues.

But we need to remember, there are a high number of 3.6's out there running, mine included with no issue.

I also like my 2013, because the oil cooler issue was not applicable.

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Old 06-28-2019, 10:24 PM
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So they all have head issues but Jeep can’t fix the problem??? And oil cooler leaks??? Wow. No offense but why do people keep buying these things? Obviously a vehicle that needs to be traded in before the warranty is up.
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Old 06-28-2019, 10:33 PM
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This is 2014 so what’s the oil cooler leak issue?
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Old 06-29-2019, 01:13 AM   #8
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I think people throw 'all' cylinder head issues (well actually the 2x known ones) into one.

There is 1) the head issue of the early model Pentastar engines and then there is 2) an issue with the roller followers (plus possible subsequent damage) that seem to affect most years and in all fairness some other manufacturers as well.

Plus, let's be honest, while there aren't many recent model engines with no issues, the issues that Pentastar has are relatively easy to deal with.
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Old 06-29-2019, 01:20 AM   #9
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If you have had the head replaced, why get rid of the Jeep?

Keep in mind that today's modern vehicles are the most complex vehicles ever produced.
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Old 06-29-2019, 01:42 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Mikeee View Post
Bought my son a 2014 with about 110k on it. Late last year we had check engine light come on. Without going into detail with everything we checked or replaced it is the bad head on the left side of the engine. We are getting it fixed and I’m going to get rid of it. My son is set on a Jeep though. So what year model did this this problem stop? Or is just an ongoing issue. Not buying him a new one. But don’t want to get screwed again on one of these. Trying to talk him into a truck but not much luck. Thanks for the info.


1. If you fixed the problem, I'd keep the Jeep. You know what's been done. You may very well buy another Jeep that is a ticking time bomb with the head. Used vehicles are a crap shoot(well, any vehicle).


2. If your son isn't paying for the Jeep, put him in whatever you dang well please.
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Old 06-29-2019, 01:43 AM   #11
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So they all have head issues but Jeep canít fix the problem??? And oil cooler leaks??? Wow. No offense but why do people keep buying these things? Obviously a vehicle that needs to be traded in before the warranty is up.
That was exactly my first impression, but when you think of 10mln pentastars out there, let say 1% have issues which sounds acceptable - that represent 100,000 motors with problems, spread between different models off-course,
But realistically thinking no manufacturer have only 1% of bad motors.
Why people keep buying these things: imo modern engine with simple design, it is comparatively easy to work on pentastar. Most of the problems are known and DIY fixes are available.
Wrangler community is very knowledgeable and helpful.
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Old 06-29-2019, 10:32 PM   #12
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Friend of mine has a '16 sport with about 30k miles on it. Check engine light with a #2 exhaust valve not closing all the way. After said repair and about 3 miles down the road, blew butterscotch out of the coolant over flow. Back to dealer it goes. Tear down of engine found new parts did not cause said issue. Oil and coolant got mixed. Dealer installed new engine and new cooling system. Talked to him today, says jeep sounds quieter and more power than when he bought it new. Maybe it was a V5?

I have a '15 with 78k miles on it. About 50k, I had the rear main seal replaced due to oil leak.
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Old 07-02-2019, 11:07 AM   #13
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This is 2014 so what’s the oil cooler leak issue?
The oil cooler tends to develop a leak that flows back and over the bell housing. Its a fairly easy fix, but takes a lot of time to get to. Photo 4 of my album. https://imgur.com/a/Ehcvy

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2014+ JKs Most filters use code Fram CH11665, K&N PS-7026 Purolator L36296,
Some people have seen oil stains at the rear of the bell housing. If you follow the stain up, it will go between the valve covers, under the intake plenum, and straight to the oil cooler manifold. This is a trend with 2014 Jeeps specifically. This oil cooler is a part of the filter housing, not cheap, and not easy to replace either.
(2014 oil cooler/filter housing 68105583AA) I believe they're up to revision E now (Last Letter)
I should update that page, the price has gone down in the last few years.
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Old 07-02-2019, 11:38 AM   #14
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I should update that page, the price has gone down in the last few years.
And revision F now: https://www.wranglerforum.com/f202/j...l#post34199311
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Old 07-02-2019, 05:51 PM   #15
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Just to clarify, Wrangleur has it right in post #8. There was the initial problem in the 2012 and early 2013 with failed valve guides (primarily on the left head) causing early valve failure and loss of compression in the affected cylinders. This was pretty common and was fixed with a revision that included improved material in the valves and valve guides, and warranty was extended to cover this issue. This particular problem affects only the 2012 and some early 2013 models.

Subsequently there have been some spurious problems with accelerated rocker arm/follower wear, and while this is much less common it seems to potentially affect all 3.6 Pentastars... most will not see a problem, but some engines do, not sure if anyone including FCA knows why at this point.

People get these two endlessly confused in these threads and probably always will, and in fact even the dealers get it mixed up. But in most cases you do not need or want to replace the entire head simply due to valve noise or a check engine light on later model years as usually replacing affected rocker arms/followers is all that is necessary, and a lot less invasive.
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Old 07-02-2019, 09:09 PM   #16
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My buddies 2012 had a catastrophic failure on cylinder 2 in his 3.6. Jeep dealer checked it out said it was from the head but because he was the second owner he got stuck with having to pay to fix it. It was a real crap deal. Glad I have a 4.0 in my TJ
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Old 07-02-2019, 09:50 PM   #17
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Old reliable 3.6

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So they all have head issues but Jeep canít fix the problem??? And oil cooler leaks??? Wow. No offense but why do people keep buying these things? Obviously a vehicle that needs to be traded in before the warranty is up.
This forum is for truthful and constructive information not haters with nothing but useless comments. Please wallow in your preferred vehicle forum so that we all can be spared the useless banter...
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Old 07-02-2019, 10:18 PM   #18
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I just pulled the trigger to replace the engine on my 2013. Throwing cam sensor codes and noisy especially at cold start up. The worst dealer I've ever been to had a service rep literally state "that's normal". Well throwing cam sensor P codes at random times is not normal. I took it to a shop I trust and then decided to go the extra mile and replace the engine with a re-engineered one from Powertrain Products Inc. Comes with 5 year unlimited mile warranty by default and is supposed to have fixed the issues FCA seems hesitant to do.
Hope to be wheelin again in under 3 weeks.
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Old 07-03-2019, 12:26 AM   #19
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...re-engineered one from Powertrain Products Inc. Comes with 5 year unlimited mile warranty by default and is supposed to have fixed the issues FCA seems hesitant to do...
I like to believe in promises too.

But until I actually see their claims (or better pictures) about what they are actually improving and how they go about it, I stay skeptical. Same goes for Jasper Engines.

No question, I cross my fingers and wish you the best with the new engine, so please don't take my comment in a wrong way.

I'm just an older guy and have seen my share of promises literally falling apart.
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Old 07-03-2019, 07:59 AM   #20
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OK my .02 cents worth on the subject.. I have a 2015 JKU... I've had 90% of the entire rear internal differential parts replaced late last summer because of a clunking noise. May this year the valves we ticking on the right passenger side with 63K miles on the odometer... Dealer told me the ticking was caused by rocker arm issue and also wore both camshafts. So a new head assembly and both cams for that side, along with related gaskets, fluids....

Both times I did not pay one red cents for either of these issues. All was covered under warranty.

As others have said, why not keep it, you sort of know what you got. Seems large majority of some model of vehicle today have some sort of issue.
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Old 07-08-2019, 04:53 PM   #21
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my 2cents... The reason we keep our jeeps is because there is no other vehicle that you can take the doors and top off. It also is the most customization vehicle out there!

I've had issues with my 2014 (leaking rad, bad HVAC controls, leaking oil filter/cooler assembly, bad axle U-joint). however if you know how to wrench and follow instructions, you can fix most issues easily!

Just did my water pump/belt/idler pulleys/thermostat in the last 2 weeks @ ~100k km. Nothing hard about it just time consuming due to you have to remove stuff to get at other stuff (air intake, alternator). Saved $800cdn doing all that work.
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Old 07-08-2019, 05:47 PM   #22
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No question, I cross my fingers and wish you the best with the new engine, so please don't take my comment in a wrong way.

I'm just an older guy and have seen my share of promises literally falling apart.
Appreciate the honest opinion, but at minimum the cost is less than going through FCA and it means I won't have to go to the worst dealer ever again.

Love the vehicle, and remember: some problems are just opportunities to upgrade!!
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Old 07-08-2019, 06:25 PM   #23
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Hmmm....the 3.8L sounds like a better deal all the time! ;-)
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:33 PM   #24
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Hmmm....the 3.8L sounds like a better deal all the time! ;-)
Because the 3.8s had no issues.


OP- If you don't want the Jeep get rid of it. As others have stated there are a shit ton of Jeeps on the road -the number of issues isn't astronomical as a percentage. The Pentastar is not the best to be certain- but the early on head issues were covered pretty much without question. As those sale vehicles get older that can get a little more complicated. But no manufacturer is devoid of defects. Not. One.
Are there better car makers?100%. Infinity replaced my husband's tranny AFTER he'd installed a supercharger. Crap they replaced door trim with an oil change because it was worn. (We didn't ask.) Jeep would laugh you out of the show room. But do they have anything I'd currently like to drive? No. People love their Jeeps because they are Jeeps. Clearly you don't agree so tell your son until he's old enough to buy his own get him something else.
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:55 AM   #25
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I agree with most of what you said, except Pentastar falling short of being the best.

It is an awesome engine, particularly in terms of simplicity and accessibility of parts. The few issues that it has can be easily mitigated if someone is willing to follow and address those issues (I'm not saying you are not, just generally speaking).

I believe that most complaints about Pentastar originate from an increasingly prevailant entitlement culture, with little to no technical background and not the slightest idea about how other manufacturers engines compare.
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Old 07-11-2019, 06:44 AM   #26
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Tend to agree. Pentastar is a great performer. Could have benefited from a few more gears in the JK, although the Mercedes five speed automatic gearbox is very robust.
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:30 AM   #27
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@JeepHerz
I agree with most of what you said, except Pentastar falling short of being the best.

It is an awesome engine, particularly in terms of simplicity and accessibility of parts. The few issues that it has can be easily mitigated if someone is willing to follow and address those issues (I'm not saying you are not, just generally speaking).

I believe that most complaints about Pentastar originate from an increasingly prevailant entitlement culture, with little to no technical background and not the slightest idea about how other manufacturers engines compare.
Well said sir! Even though I've had both the head issue and rear differential issue on my 2015 JKU I still want the Pentastar 3.6 L V6 in a Wrangler.
3.6 L V6 has 285 HP, 260 ft/lbs torque
3.8 L V6 has 202 HP, 237 ft/lbs torque

My verdict is still out on the new 2.0 L turbocharged I4 rated at 270 HP and 295 ft/lbs torque. Ask me in about 5 year of real world testing.

Today engines are very complex, all brands mind you.... 50 years ago engines didn't have a computer managing fuel, air, timing ect... Today vehicles have a larger PC managing all the functions larger than the lunar lander from July 1969..

Wife has a Grand Cherokee with the 3.6L..It scoot down highway 100mph with minimal effort, can't imagine a Hemi under the hood. She averages about 22mpg. My Wrangler 18.5mpg.
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:35 AM   #28
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A type-o folks ***** that's 237 ft/lbs torque**** I can't go back in an edit my posts for some reason
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:52 AM   #29
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A type-o folks ***** that's 237 ft/lbs torque**** I can't go back in an edit my posts for some reason

Damn...I was like WOO HOO!


I have the 3.8 and that big number was looking good!
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:55 AM   #30
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Having worked in a fleet for a long time. I can tell you all makes of vehicles have their own set of common issues. You see it a lot if you have a lot of the same vehicles. So it doesnít surprise me that the pentastar has some. Iím sure down the road someone will create a permanent repair for these problems. Always seems to happen. Until then Iím just going to keep an eye on things and enjoy my Jeep
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