The Dodge Avenger is a very reliable and reasonably priced car. In fact, many owners love this model for its solid performance and fuel economy, its many trim and engine choices, and a host of other user-friendly features. In terms of resale value and depreciation, like other Dodge vehicles, the Avenger has an average depreciation rate. In fact, according to AutoPadre, the Avenger’s depreciation rate is fairly average at 18%.
Are Dodge Avengers Reliable?
You can clearly see the Dodge Avenger’s reliability through its performance in reliability rankings. RepairPal gives the model an above-average reliability rating of 4.0 out of 5.0, ranking it 17th out of 36 compact cars in their lineup.
The average annual repair cost of the Avenger is $541, which is lower than average compared to other compact cars ($526) and other vehicle models in general ($652). If you plan on buying an Avenger, you can expect to bring it to a shop for repairs an average of 0.3 times a year, which is pretty average. As for the severity of repairs, there’s only an 11% chance that you’re dealing with a major issue with your Dodge Avenger whenever you bring it to the shop.
The Dodge Avenger can last 200,000 miles with proper care and maintenance. But according to some owners, they’ve managed to make their vehicles last 300,000 miles or more.
Top Dodge Avenger Problems
Despite being a reliable car, the Avenger also has a few issues. Below are some of the Dodge Avenger’s most common problems:
One of the more prominent issues with the Dodge Avenger, specifically the 2014 year model, is squeaky brakes. While this issue isn’t quite as severe as some of the items on this list, it’s an annoying problem for the owners who have experienced it firsthand.
A few 2014 Dodge Avenger owners have said that they’ve gone to the mechanic/dealership in hopes that the mechanics could resolve the issue. But they’re ultimately disappointed to find out that nothing could be done about the squeaky brakes, as they’re supposedly a characteristic of the vehicles themselves. Some have replaced their brakes in hopes of solving the problem, but the noise kept coming back. Dodge has yet to issue recalls or technical service bulletins (TSBs) to address this issue.
Stalling is a serious problem that can put drivers and their passengers in danger, especially if they’re on the highway. In fact, 2008-2014 Dodge Avengers have this particular issue. The reason behind the stalling varies, from faulty Totally Integrated Power Modules (TIPMs) to throttle bodies that need to be replaced.
Repair costs for this problem depend on the root cause. For owners of the 2008 Avenger, it cost them an average of $300 to get the faulty throttles on their vehicles fixed/replaced. For 2012 year model owners, replacing the TIPM cost them at least $1,000.
Owners who shared their experiences with this issue have reported that their vehicles suddenly became unresponsive and died in the middle of the road. Others have reported that their vehicles stalled as they were coming to a stop or when they were going over a certain speed. Those who had issues with their TIPM also reported that the lights on their vehicles flashed on and off.
Engine Not Starting
For some 2008-2014 Dodge Avengers, the anti-theft system may prevent the vehicle from starting properly. This issue is said to be caused by electrostatic discharge and can affect the wireless control module. According to RepairPal, Avenger owners encountered the issue at around 99,317 miles. Diagnosing the issue also cost owners around $80-$110.
Avenger owners who have experienced this issue have reported that while the lights and alarms on their vehicle would function properly, their vehicle refused to start. Many of these drivers reported that there was no prior indication that an issue was present. Some have even resorted to replacing their battery, but this proved ineffective in most cases.
A technical service bulletin (TSB- 08-007-08) was issued by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles US (FCA US LLC) to address this issue. Aside from 2007-2008 Dodge Avengers, this TSB also covered other models under the FCA umbrella, including the Jeep Wrangler and the Chrysler Sebring. The TSB details the diagnostic procedure and contains other important repair information.
Air Conditioning/Heater Not Working Properly
A/C and heating issues can make one’s driving experience a nightmare. In fact, according to CarComplaints.com, it’s the top 2012 Dodge Avenger problem, with over 56 reports on the site alone. It’s also the most reported 2013 Dodge Avenger problem, with 23 reports. In many cases, owners would report hearing a clicking noise coming from the dashboard. Then, all of a sudden, the heating would blow cold air from the driver’s side. In some cases, the heating on the passenger side would turn cold as well.
Many Dodge Avenger owners encountered this problem starting at around 50,000 miles. Depending on the root cause, the issue took $150 to $1,000 to fix. While some 2011 model year owners reported that thermostat replacement resolved the problem, many 2012 and 2013 model year owners fixed the problem by replacing the heater core.
Some owners of 2008-2014 Avengers have also reported hearing a knocking or clicking sound coming from the glove compartment while the A/C is on. A few of these owners say that the noise goes away after a few minutes, but others report that this noise can still be heard even when the vehicle is turned off. Repair instructions for this specific problem are outlined in TSB #9004022.
Transmission and Shifting Issues
Some Avengers that had automatic transmissions were said to have developed transmission issues like rough/erratic shifting and inconsistent shifting response. While this issue was found in the 1995-2000 and 2008-2014 year models, it was a huge 2008 Dodge Avenger problem. Avenger owners would notice the problem at an average of 93,000 miles.
According to some owners, shifting gears seemed alright, until the vehicle got stuck on the first or second gear. A few have reported that their vehicles couldn’t go into the correct gear, while others have reported that the vehicle would suddenly stall/pause when they would accelerate.
Dodge has released a few TSBs to address transmission issues, including TSB #21-015-08 and TSB #21-011-08, but as of writing, the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration has yet to post these documents online. You may request these documents at your local Dodge dealer.
Engine Cooling Problems
On some Dodge Avengers, wiring issues in the cooling fan motor may cause coolant to be drawn into the connector. This is a major 2008 Dodge Avenger problem because it can cause the wires to short circuit, which may lead to engine fires. According to the affected owners, their radiator fan suddenly stopped working, which led to engine overheating in some cases. According to others, their A/C would stop working and they also noticed an unusual smell.
Dodge issued a recall on November 8, 2007, so that they could inspect the connectors and assess what repairs needed to be done. CarComplaints.com has compiled the essential documents related to this recall, including announcements, repair information, and alternate transportation options for affected vehicle owners.
Aside from considering the looks, features, and price of a vehicle you want to buy, it’s also important to take into account the potential problems you may encounter once you purchase it. When looking for Avengers, you should do research on the reliability and common problems of the model year you want to buy. Lastly, make sure that the seller has resolved any issues before you seal the deal.