This revised version of the Tahoe has its good points, but the SUV remains a big hulk that handles clumsily and thirsts for gasoline. On the upside, it delivers readily available power, rides pretty well, its cavernous cabin stays quiet and it offers generous second-row seating. The six-speed automatic transmission also brings some improvement in acceleration and fuel economy. Towing heavy loads is another forte.
Alerts
There are 2 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Reliability

Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how used vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system.

Overall Reliability
Most Common Trouble Spots
Common Trouble Spot
Common Trouble Spot
The 2012 Chevrolet Tahoe has been recalled 2 times by NHTSA. View Recalls
Research Years * Redesign year
Worse Better
00*
01
02
03
04
05
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07*
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15*
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Overall Reliability Verdict
NA
NA
NA
POTENTIAL TROUBLE SPOTS
Engine Major
NA
NA
NA
Engine Minor
NA
NA
NA
Engine Cooling
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Major
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Minor
NA
NA
NA
Drive System
NA
NA
NA
Fuel System
NA
NA
NA
Electric System
NA
NA
NA
Climate System
NA
NA
NA
Suspension
NA
NA
NA
Brakes
NA
NA
NA
Exhaust
NA
NA
NA
Paint/Trim
NA
NA
NA
Body Integrity
NA
NA
NA
Body Hardware
NA
NA
NA
Power Equipment
NA
NA
NA
In-car Electronics
NA
NA
NA
Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey for about 420,000 vehicles, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how 2000 through 2019 vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system. NA indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.

Learn more about car Reliability.

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2012 Chevrolet Tahoe owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"rear backup light failed; front daytime driver light failed."

Anonymous, MA (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)

"DRL burned out 3 times in a year"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 5.3-L V8)

"One running light went out. Estimated labor to replace it is $200. That's aggravating."

Anonymous, MT (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 5.3-L V8)
Headlights

"Bulbs dont last long"

Anonymous, KY (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 5.3-L V8)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"Heavy rain water leakage on driver's floorboard"

Anonymous, NC (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)

"Both doors on driver side fill with water when it rains"

Ryan G., TN (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 5.3-L V8)
Wind noise

"Makes loud wind noise when pulling a horse trailer. Does not make this noise when no trailer is being pulled."

Robert V., NC (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.3-L V8)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Electrical failure

"Intermittent total electrical failure causing radio to turn off, gauges to go dark, power locks to cycle from locked to unlocked and, most seriously, causing electric transmission to malfunction, which, in turn, causes engine to rev without vehicle accelerating"

R O., NC (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)
Stability control (ESC)

"service stability appeared on dash dealer diagnosed sensor in steering column how can a sensor go bad (very poor quality)"

Anonymous, CT (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)
Traction control

"same as pervious comment"

Anonymous, CT (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Antilock system (ABS)

"Sensors affecting Stabilitrak and Traction Control indicate that those systems are turned off when outside air temperature exceeds 75 degrees F."

Curt S., IL (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)
Parking brake

"Pads dislocated and semi-locked up rear wheel"

Anonymous, KY (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LT 5.3-L V8)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose interior trim or moldings

"Dash cracks repeatedly, in this Tahoe just like others I owned"

Robert G., GU (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 6.0-L V8 hybrid)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Electronic or air suspension

"the "service suspension system" warning comes on, seems the rear suspension air system is working intermitently"

Anonymous, MB (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 5.3-L V8)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Refrigerant leaks

"Leaks can't be located even though system loses refrigerant loss is evident"

John S., CT (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 5.3-L V8)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

"Guage on dashboard indicated a problem"

Joseph K., FL (2012 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 5.3-L V8)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Compare 2012 Models

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This score shows whether the model had more or fewer problems overall than the average model of that year, calculated from the total number of problems reported by subscribers in all 17 trouble spots.
Recalls
PROVIDED BY
ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING:COOLING SYSTEM:FAN
Dec 02 2016
A short circuit increases the risk of a fire.
Summary:
General Motors LLC (GM) is recalling certain model year 2010-2014 Chevrolet Tahoe Police Pursuit vehicles manufactured August 24, 2009, to December 1, 2013. The affected vehicles, equipped with special equipment options for police or government service, may experience corrosion of the under-hood cooling fan assembly due to fluid intrusion, which may result in an electrical short circuit.
What should you do:
GM will notify owners, and dealers will replace the fan motor and shroud, extend the wiring and re-orient the fan motor to reduce the risk of corrosion, free of charge. The recall began on September 7, 2017. Owners may contact Chevrolet customer service at 1-800-222-1020. GM's number for this recall is 16145.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 16V868000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 49927
ELECTRICAL SYSTEM:IGNITION
Dec 30 2014
If stuck in the "Start" position, the ignition may suddenly snap back into the "Accessory" position, causing a loss of engine, steering, and braking power, increasing the risk of a vehicle crash. If the vehicle is in a crash, the air bags may not deploy, increasing the risk of occupant injury.
Summary:
General Motors LLC (GM) is recalling certain model year 2011-2012 Cadillac Escalade, Escalade ESV, Escalade EXT, Chevrolet Avalanche, Silverado HD, Silverado LD, Suburban, Tahoe, GMC Sierra LD, Sierra HD, Yukon, and Yukon XL vehicles. In the affected vehicles, the ignition lock actuator may bind, making turning the key difficult or causing the ignition to get stuck in the "Start" position.
What should you do:
GM will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and replace the ignition lock housing, as necessary, free of charge. The recall began on February 12, 2015. Owners may contact GM customer service at 1-800-458-8006 (Cadillac), 1-800-222-1020 (Chevrolet), or 1-800-462-8782 (GMC). GM's number for this recall is 14696 for the original equipment, and 14912 for the service replacement parts.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 14V827000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 84192
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