Jeep 3.6 Engine Problems? What You Need to Know

Curious about the Jeep 3.6 Pentastar engine, and its reliability? We’ve compiled a brief history of the engine, its use, and why it truly is a dependable option. Early issues have been dealt with and upgraded, resulting in an economical, solid choice.

Take a look at why this isn’t an engine you need to worry about beneath your Jeep hood. 

The 3.6 Pentastar Engine and Possible Concerns

The Jeep 3.6 Engine is part of the Pentastar engine family that boasts an aluminum, die-cast cylinder block dual overhead cam, 24-valve gasoline V6 engine. Officially introduced in 2009 for the 2011 Jeep (amongst other) releases, it did have some issues early on, as many new products are wont to have. 

Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport engine

In particular, the left side cylinder head would have issues, create a ticking sound, and usually illuminate the check engine light. Combined with a Jeep enthusiast’s skepticism of anything replacing a tried and true 4 and 6 straight valve engine, it isn’t a surprise to find Jeep lovers looking for any troubleshooting tips in advance. 

However, their concerns can be put to rest. Early issues were quickly discovered and put under warranty in the case they should appear. Even then, only 0.5 % of the vehicles sold exhibited the issue caused by excessive wear due to casting sand, and upgrades have further reduced any issues offered by the engine.

Reasons to Love the 3.6 Engine

There are actually quite a few reasons to love this little engine. I have a two-stage valve lift height change system (VVL) that may not seem like much, but improves gas exchange at high loads. This works to reduce fuel consumption, requiring less energy for operation, and makes  it much more economical to drive without a loss of power. 

Novosibirsk, Russia – November 15, 2019: Jeep, Closeup of a clean motor block, . Internal combustion engine

It also has been around for quite some time now, and can be found in A LOT of vehicles, making it a well known, easy to work on and with, option. 

Furthermore, in 2015 a 3.6 liter Pentastar second generation engine was launched that has a modified cooled exhaust gas recirculation system to make your engine even more reliable and affordable to drive. These upgraded engines made their debut in the 2020 Jeep Gladiator pickups. 


You can put your worries surrounding the 3.6 Pentastar engine to rest. Not only has it been around long enough to be considered a dependable, long-lasting, and affordable engine option, it truly is an economical choice as well. For a smaller engine it packs quite a bit of power thanks to technological advancements, and is rated as a top performer. 

Let us know if you have any further questions and, as always, please share!

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