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Common Failures Of The Chevrolet Spark: Problems, Disadvantages And Criticisms

Based on a Korean design and introduced to the market in 2002, the Chevy Spark is an overall reliable car and there are no common known issues with this car. Discover here the common faults of the Chevrolet Spark .


With regular maintenance, the life of a Chevy Spark can be up to 100,000 miles, and it’s cheap to boot. However, no car is perfect, and its two most reported problems have been excessive oil consumption and transmission slippage.

Common failures of the Chevrolet Spark

Problems on the Chevy Spark are more prevalent on older models, especially the 2013 and 2014 Spark. In the following posts you will discover the good and the bad of the Chevrolet Spark.

Here you will also find the most common Spark problems listed by frequency along with the Spark model year in which the problem occurs, how to fix it, and the cost of repair.

1. Using Too Much Oil (2013 Chevy Spark)

The 2013 Chevy Spark sometimes develops engine problems that cause it to consume excessive oil. This is not a common problem with any Chevy Spark model year, and is only common with the 2013 Spark.

If you check your car’s oil level, discover it’s low, replace it, and then notice that the oil levels are back to normal just a few days later, you’ll want to have the engine checked by a mechanic as soon as possible.

Do not just add oil, this will not solve the underlying problem. Over time, any engine will begin to develop small leaks as its components wear down, letting oil escape. The most common causes of excessive oil consumption are worn seals, gaskets or piston rings.

Motor oil protects these components by keeping friction to a minimum, but this can fail when extreme weather conditions cause the oil thickness to change, when oil levels are too low for a period of time, from using the wrong or poor oil. quality, or simply for years of use.

What is the best way to prevent my Chevy Spark from consuming too much oil?

Don’t wait for the ” low oil ” indicator on your dash to come on, this means your oil is about to run out , a dire sign that your car’s engine parts are bumping into each other and breaking down.

The biggest driver of excessive oil consumption is not replacing it regularly, as a lack of oil wears down parts, leading to leaks.

A good rule of thumb for changing your oil is to change your oil every 3,000 miles, which shouldn’t be too often in a drivable city car like the Spark, but that doesn’t mean you should let your guard down. Be sure to keep an eye on the odometer and manually check the oil every 5,000 kilometers to avoid falling into the vicious cycle of increased oil consumption.

How to prevent, recognize and treat worn engine parts?

The first step in dealing with any problem is acknowledging it. These are the telltale signs of a worn gasket, seal, or piston ring.

  • White or gray exhaust smoke
  • bad acceleration
  • power reduction
  • Sludge buildup under oil plug
  • excessive oil consumption

If you notice any of these symptoms and show your Spark to a mechanic, the solution can range from replacing a single part to installing a completely new engine. The most serious symptoms of engine damage on this list are any drop in horsepower or acceleration, and the least serious symptom is excessive oil consumption.

If you start to notice a change in the car’s performance, it’s a sign that the engine is severely damaged and might need to be replaced. Other symptoms can be solved with the replacement of some part.

2. Management failures (Spark 2020)

While driving a compact car, it shouldn’t take much effort to keep the vehicle on the road. After all, the Spark is just a small specimen. However, many users have complained a lot about the steering system.

A user who was driving a 2020 Chevrolet Spark, stated that the steering wheel began to turn left and right, not so violently that he could not control the vehicle, because he was driving very slowly, but enough to feel and see the steering wheel. move left and right. The conduit says this lasted for about 5-7 seconds. The vehicle only had 26 miles on the odometer.

3. Engine problems

The Spark’s engine should work well enough to get around town. However, this is another major issue among homeowners. Among the common failures of the Chevy Spark this is one of the most reported.

One user stated that their biggest complaint was the lack of acceleration after a complete stop at the stop sign. The driver said that when there were four people and he was at a stop sign and it was his turn to go, the car would not move.

4. Transmission slippage and failure (Spark 2014)

Transmission slippage occurs when the engine is running but the car does not shift smoothly or stays in full gear, and it is dangerous when it occurs while moving at high speeds, causing you to lose control of the car.

This issue is the second most common of any Chevy Spark model year, and is most pronounced with the 2014 Spark.

If your transmission is slipping, you’ll definitely need service, but luckily, it’s more likely with the Chevy Spark that the shop can fix your existing transmission and you won’t need a new one. Here are some signs that your transmission is slipping:

  • Inability to change gear
  • Sudden and uncontrolled changes
  • Engine revs are stronger than normal
  • Unusual vibrations or noises
  • reduced acceleration or power
  • strange burning smell

Cars are complicated, and sometimes a single symptom can be the result of multiple causes. However, if your Chevy Spark exhibits any of these symptoms, it could be due to transmission slippage, which also has multiple causes:

  • old transmission fluid
  • Not enough transmission fluid
  • The gears need to be replaced
  • broken solenoid
  • Broken or worn drive belts

Luckily, the most common cause of transmission slippage is the easiest to treat and the least serious for the health of the car: transmission fluid.

Topping up your transmission fluid is the easiest and most effective way to improve the life and performance of your transmission , and you can do it yourself. The minimum time you should wait before replacing your transmission fluid is 30,000 to 50,000 miles, and the maximum is 75,000 to 100,000 miles.

If a part of your transmission is broken, you’ll need to have a mechanic diagnose the problem and decide which parts need to be replaced or if you need a completely new transmission.

This includes fixing a broken gear or drive band or running a fluid flush to replace all the transmission fluid.

Solenoids are part of many systems in cars, and their basic function is to translate an electrical impulse controlled by a computer into the movement of a mechanical part. Transmissions have a complicated solenoid system that distributes the transmission fluid as evenly as possible.

General Advantages and Disadvantages of the Chevy Spark

Chevy thought of the Spark for a specific purpose, namely to be a super cheap subcompact, and it serves that purpose well. It’s not meant to be a high-powered road warrior or luxury car, and it’s not.


Low Price : The Chevy Spark is one of the cheapest cars you can buy new. It’s great if you need a no-frills, reliable car to get to work. The size of the Spark makes it easy to park in the city.

Subcompacts tend to have good handling, and the Spark is no exception.

The Spark’s touchscreen instrument panel and entertainment system have a good user interface and all the modern trimmings, and sit well alongside other comparable compact utilities. At seven inches, it surpasses the screens of the Hyundai Accent and the Kia Rio, equaling that of the Nissan Versa.

With all the common faults of the Chevrolet Spark, this car has a reputation for getting good gas mileage.


The Spark lacks the standard safety features of other cars. For example, unless you’re willing to go the extra mile and get the 2LT model, the Spark lacks automatic emergency braking. This is typical of cheap subcompacts, and the only comparable car that does have it is the Nissan Versa.

The Spark’s shape, size and geometry make it more vulnerable than a sedan or SUV in an accident .

The Spark can feel cramped if you’re in the back seat. The front seats have adequate space, but it is not a spacious car.

There isn’t a lot of cargo space in the Spark. You can handle a typical trip to the grocery store, but you can’t haul a large, heavy piece of furniture or a large pet carrier.

The 2022 Chevy Spark comes with a CVT, or continuously variable transmission, as well as a manual transmission option. CVTs have gotten a bad rap over the years , and when they were first introduced in the late 1980s, it was well deserved. They have improved a lot, but some still mistrust them.

What do the reviews say?

The Chevy Spark has received positive to mixed reviews. It has some obvious shortcomings when it comes to power, size and comfort, but it delivers on its goals as a car: to be reliable, affordable and manoeuvrable.

  • “All 2022 Sparks have an anemic engine at highway speeds, but it performs well around town and in traffic, where the car’s agility shines.”

  • “The 2022 Chevrolet Spark is affordable and easy to drive around town, and has user-friendly technology, but the downside is its cramped rear seat, few safety features, and nervous reactions on the highway.”

To end

Since you know the most common spark failures, you should know that if you’re trying to buy a used Spark, it’s best to avoid the 2013 and 2014 as they are the ones that account for most of the problems mentioned here.

There are four available Spark trims that increase in amenities like heated seats, keyless entry, and safety features like automatic emergency braking as follows: LS, 1LT, ACTIV, 2LT.

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