The Jeep Compass is a fairly reliable compact SUV that’s well-loved for its spacious interiors and towing capacity. According to CarEdge.com, this model has an average depreciation rate of 47% after five years. The five-year resale value of a Jeep Compass is around $13,000, assuming an initial selling price of $25,000 for a brand new unit.
Is the Jeep Compass Reliable?
There are a lot of mixed reviews regarding the reliability of the Jeep Compass. RepairPal.com gave this compact SUV an above-average reliability rating of 4 out of 5, ranking it 11th out of 26 models in this segment. Meanwhile, according to the J.D. Power and Associates website, the Jeep Compass had fairly average reliability scores, ranging from 75 to 78 out of 100.
Maintaining a Jeep Compass is fairly easy on the wallet. RepairPal.com estimates that the average annual cost of repairs for this SUV is around $526, which is pretty average, considering that the average annual maintenance cost for other compact SUVs is $521. You can also expect to bring your Jeep Compass to a shop for unscheduled repairs an average of 0.2 times per year, with the probability of the repair being severe at 11%.
The Jeep Compass has only been around since 2006, so most estimates regarding its longevity might not be as accurate. But given that many Jeeps can last more than 10 years and 200,000 miles, you can expect that with regular maintenance, the Jeep Compass can last you for a long time.
Top Jeep Compass Problems
As with most vehicles, the Jeep Compass has its fair share of problems and issues that many owners find annoying or downright dangerous. Below are some of the most common Jeep Compass problems:
Vehicle Refuses to Start
A somewhat common 2018 Jeep Compass problem is a no-start condition. According to the affected owners, they first noticed the issue when the vehicle was still relatively new, at approximately 25,000 miles. One owner said that even if they had their vehicle checked at a mechanic, their vehicle still failed to start. They were told that something may be wrong with the vehicle’s battery.
So far, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA US LLC) has released three technical service bulletins (TSBs) regarding the no-start condition in some 2018 Jeep Compasses. The first bulletin, TSB #S1908000108, outlines the repair and diagnostic information for no-start conditions that are accompanied by multiple U-codes (i.e. U11B9-00, U0100-00, U0001-00, U0401-00, and U0422-00). The latest version of this bulletin was issued on November 10, 2020.
The second bulletin is TSB #09-004-20, which was released on March 5, 2020. This bulletin contains revisions from an earlier document released back in March 2018. According to this document, some 2018 Jeep Compasses that have a no-start condition in freezing temperatures may have a muffler that lacks a weep hole. The third bulletin, TSB #S2008000075, was released on June 25, 2020. According to this TSB, a no-start condition accompanied by cluster messages to service the shifter or service the start/stop system may be caused by a faulty connection to the auxiliary battery and other related components.
Water Leaking Inside the Passenger Cabin
When driving through inclement weather, everyone should feel secure inside their own vehicle knowing that the snow or rain won’t get inside the passenger cabin. Unfortunately, it’s a different story for some owners of the Jeep Compass. One of the major 2014 Jeep Compass problems is a leaking roof or sunroof. According to some of the affected owners, whenever they’d drive through bad weather, rain or snow would always get inside their passenger cabin. According to one of the owners, the leak is visible through the vehicle’s dome light, while others say there are no visible leaks.
FCA released a TSB (#23-035-15) in September 2015 to address the roof leak issue. According to this bulletin, aside from the Jeep Compass, this issue was also present in some Jeep Patriot, Dodge Journey, and Dodge Caliber units. The document outlines the repair procedure, which involves replacing the sunroof service trough.
There are quite a few complaints from owners of 2012 and 2014 Jeep Compasses about noisy/grinding brakes. According to the affected owners, the noise would be low in pitch, but it was definitely noticeable and irritating from the get-go. For the 2012 year models, this issue would be evident at around 8,950 miles. Meanwhile, 2014 year model owners would notice this issue at 12,700 miles on average.
Some owners have brought their vehicles to the shop only to be told by mechanics that this is a normal defect of Jeep Compasses and that nothing can be done to remove the noise. While some owners have resorted to replacing the brakes and other related components, the noise still persisted in most cases.
On August 20, 2016, FCA released a TSB to address this specific issue. TSB #05-003-16 suggests that affected owners install an anti-vibration bracket to the rear brake caliper to get rid of the low, grinding noise they heard when braking.
CVT Transmission Overheating
An overheating CVT transmission is perhaps the worst Jeep Compass problem on this list. It affected 2011 year models. Not only is it very expensive to repair, it’s also a significant safety hazard. Owners who experienced this issue have reported that the CVT transmission on their Jeep Compass would overheat whenever the outside temperature is high or when they’re driving at high speeds on the interstate. Their vehicles would suddenly produce unusual whining noises and lose the ability to maintain their speed. This would happen to the affected vehicles more than once.
This issue is quite dangerous, especially when driving on the freeway, where passenger vehicles typically run at 65-75 mph. Suddenly losing speed in these situations can cause major accidents and personal injury.
Affected owners had to pay $1,700 on average to have the issue diagnosed and fixed. Unfortunately, in many cases, even mechanics didn’t know how to address the issue. There are currently no TSBs or recalls to address this specific issue. On a related note, Jeep has released TSBs #9004265 and #9004266 to address another transmission/powertrain-related problem.
Tie Rod and Control Arm/Bushing Failure
The suspension system helps keep your ride comfortable and allows for better steering and handling. The Jeep Compass has a couple of issues with the suspension system, specifically tie rod and control arm/bushing failure. One of the most common problems with the 2008 Jeep Compass is tie rod failure. Owners have reported hearing unusual sounds while driving. Upon checking, their tires had worn in an odd way. Aside from replacing the tie rod ends and control arms with new ones, mechanics also recommended getting the wheels realigned, which cost the affected owners an average of $480 to fix.
According to CarComplaints.com, the most common 2007 Jeep Compass problem is control arm/bushing failure, with 17 reports on the site. Affected owners have observed the issue at around 58,000 miles. It cost them an average of $690 to repair. One Compass owner said that the first symptom they noticed was an unusual noise produced by the vehicle as they were turning a corner. The vehicle then skewed to the passenger side as they were turning, causing the vehicle to hit the sidewalk.
In most cases, replacing the ball joints, tie rod ends, control arms, and control arm bushings fixed these suspension system-related issues. But as of writing, Jeep/FCA has not released a TSB or recall about these issues.
The TIPM or the Totally Integrated Power Module is an electronic device used to manage the distribution of power throughout the entire vehicle. If this part goes haywire, then the entire vehicle may seem like it’s possessed. Many Jeep Compass owners found out about the symptoms of a bad TIPM the hard way. A malfunctioning TIPM is one of the most expensive 2007 Jeep Compass problems. Many owners have reported their vehicle lights (headlights, dashboard lights, etc.) going on and off. Some have even reported that their vehicle just honked on its own, even if it was parked.
According to the affected Compass owners, they started seeing the symptoms at 110,000 miles. Most of the owners said that replacing the TIPM fixed the problem, but this came with a hefty price tag. On average, this issue cost the affected owners $1,650 to repair. There are currently no TSBs or recalls to address this issue.
You should be alright as long as you’re aware of potential problems with the particular Jeep Compass year model you’re planning on buying. It pays to avoid year models with significant issues that are expensive to fix. Taking time to research before buying a used Compass can help save you both time and money in the long run. Just make sure that the seller has cleared everything up before you push through with your purchase.