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2013 Hyundai Sonata Steering Issue - Vehicle Wanders

2

Comments

  • Driver feel or perception is not an "engineering screw-up". As stated before, hydro-driven power steering as compared to electric-driven power steering are two totally different feels. electric is instant input/instant assist. in other words if a driver has a tendency to hold a steering when with slight pressure left or right the system will attempt to assist. Changing the trim level option to different vehicle other then installed may lead to other issues or lack of assist when needed, which in turn creates a possible safety concern. as to tire wear, there is no way this setting can affect or help. aggressive driving is the lead cause to premature tire wear or lack of rotation a close second. But I digress and concede that I am a lonely Master Tech and blogs are the true experts...
  • joto1000joto1000 Posts: 22
    This is not perception that we are talking about, this is reality. I hate to sound redundant, but when multiple drivers are reporting the same safety issue with being all over the road and tire wear occurring at a premature rate, then that is what I consider a serious flaw in the design of this vehicle. This has nothing to do with aggressive driving as I have been driving for many years with zero problem with premature tire wear on any other vehicle. When one constantly has to compensate (left and right) for the car drifting then that would account for added tire wear as you are increasing the amount of surface area hitting the pavement. The change in trim level to "sport" actually helped to assist in keeping the car on the straight and narrow, when all it took before was a slight cross-wind to knock you into the next lane. My personal feeling is that they should either include the steering mode button on all of their vehicles or get rid of the "comfort" steering mode which is defaulted for the GLS models. Just my thoughts and thanks for your feedback as it is appreciated, but taken with a grain of salt (respectfully) since you are a Hyundai tech trained to sway owners from thinking there's something wrong with their vehicle.
  • I give up, because obviously you are missing the point of what this setting is. Further more I am not a "company man" I am in the business of making money, and to do that I need to fix and or repair vehicles or I don't get paid. With that said, if what the nonsense that you believe in your mind is a fix and or repair and it will satisfy you, I will gladly tell you that it is a fix for you. What you have missed is now your steering is set wrong for the vehicle that it is in, FYI just corrected one yesterday that was improperly set for the incorrect trim and the system did not operate correctly. Now that is a safety concern, at least for me, but who am I to say. I'm just a lonely expert who works on hundreds of YF's (Sonatas) in a given month at a high volume dealer and not a "Blog-Expert"...
  • missisudzmissisudz Posts: 1
    Well I am at the dealer for the third time to try and solve the drifting of my sonata all over the road.
    We had the mode changed to sport, we had the tires checked and the wheels aligned but the problem persists. Its so bad that My drive to NY from Fl was terrifying. Now the dealer is telling me that there is nothing wrong with my car and that they can not help me!

    It is less then 30 days since I purchased this vehicle and I want something done about it because I do not feel safe when I am in this car.
  • joto1000joto1000 Posts: 22
    Well that stinks. You may want to see if they can change your setting to Normal mode to see if that works. The change fixed my steering probs. Although, after buying two new tires after 12000 miles, the other two that came with the car are making extremely loud noises at highway speeds like a belt is off. If it's not one thing!
  • civic2001civic2001 Posts: 30
    I have been reading all these wandering / warranty discussions with interest. I recently bought a 2013 Sonata GLS. The car does go straight on an open highway. However, I do feel it requires a fair amount of attention in holding onto the steering wheel. It seems I have to constantly making adjustments. The Platinum Technician at the dealership drove the car with me and concluded it is mainly due to the EPS design. This is the first car I own with this design so I have no prior experience. He acknowledged there are different settings they could change. He also suggests to give some time. If still not comfortable, they can try a different setting.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    Since the car does go straight on the highway, I think "give some time" is good advice. I drove a 2010 Sentra with slushy EPS for over two years before getting a 2013 Sonata for my wife. So I had already made the adjustment to the different feel of EPS. And the Sonata's steering feel is much better than that of the Sentra (which I no longer have, lease was up earlier this month).
  • joto1000joto1000 Posts: 22
    I wouldn't wait too long. I had to replace my front tires after only 12000 miles because of the constanct corrections that I had to make to the steering. I had them change my setting to Sport mode which resolved that issue... now I'm having transmission issues!!
  • civic2001civic2001 Posts: 30
    Thanks for all your suggestions.

    I will try to get used to Sonata EPS system. It is most noticeable when there seems to exhibit a "lack of feel" a few degrees left or right from center (hard to describe). If still not comfortable in three weeks, I will ask the dealership to change the mode.

    Various posts suggest the three modes are Comfort, Normal, and Sport. Yet there is also a post stating the choices are GLS, GE, and Sport. I assume they are equivalent. Most said the Sport mode provides a tighter grip and do seem to resolve the issue. Would Normal mode also work?

    Regardless whether this change from Comfort to Sport is a warranty/repair or modification topic, if the change really does resolve this wandering concern, then it is worth it in my mind.
  • kyrptokyrpto Posts: 216
    a 2011 Sonata w/16s and 3K on a 2013 w/ 17" wheels.
    No steerage issues with either.
    Khumos & Michelins
  • This is a follow-up to my earlier post regarding wandering. Ever since the purchase in mid-July, I had experienced a slight drift to the right. Took the car back to the dealer, its Platinum mechanic drove the car with me and concluded there was nothing wrong and it was due to the EPS design. Because of the drift, it seems I had to keep holding onto the steering wheel. A few days ago, took the car to a local Firestone store. Its alignment check revealed the left toe was off (not be much but was definitely out of spec). After adjustment, the drift is gone. The "lack of feel" is reduced and the car is much easier to handle. It is unfortunate that a new car would be delivered with alignment being off.
  • fritzmwfritzmw Posts: 1
    I made 2 trips to the dealer for a steering adjustment for "drifting and wandering."
    Trip 1--Zero calibration done w/ front tire switch (l to r, I presume). Improved the steering 50-60%.

    2000 miles later after another highway trip where I was still bothered by the "drifting," the steering was adjusted to the SPORT setting on my 2013 GLS (NOT the sport model). It is totally satisfactory now.
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    SUGGESTION:
    Assuming the 4 wheel alignment is correct on the vehicle, run the two rear tires at a two pounds higher pressure than the front tires. (If you are running the front at 30psi, run the rear at 32psi.) This might help the steering problem in a straight line!

    Best regards! ------- Dwayne
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    According to C/D, all Sonata trims including GLS will feature adjustable steering feel for MY 2014. Not quite sure what that means, but I'm thinking it would be like the feature on cars like the Elantra GT that has 3 settings, and firms up the feel quite a bit in the "sport" setting.
  • Hi - thanks to platiumtech13 for the info - I took mine right back and asked to have the steering tightened...and the tech knew how to adjust the power steering. I will say I still don't like it on the hwy. Here's my concern and perhaps you have insight...it seems that the EPS is all the rage and they are putting in many cars..I had a hard time finding one online last night that was still using the hydro power steering with the overflow etc... from all my reading it appears that I will need to go back to the 4WD in order to find one without EPS. Do you know if this is the case. Because all the auto type reviews say EPS much better etc and lots of cars are coming out with it I don't know how to find a new car without it. I had a Subaru (owned by same dealership) which was fine - maybe I need to go back to AWD subaru. Also, is there any separate adjustment that can be made to specifically deal with the hwy 70mph speed... the adjustment has the steering and control really good with regular driving where you turn and accelerate and brake often...but cruising is very stressful. Thanks in advance.
  • Did many research online regarding many 2013 Sonata wander when drivers drive them on freeway because my barely 4-week-old 2013 Sonata GLS did the exact same thing on freeway. I needed to keep correcting the steering or the car would not go straight.

    Found the solution online from a post from other forum and gave it a shot at the local dealership and it solved the issue. I found out that there were some people went back to the Hyundai dealerships and requested that their settings on the electronic steering system (EPS) be changed to "Sport" setting. The setting on my Sonata was "GLS", and it was the most sensitive mode for the steering wheel. "Soft" is the next mode for lesser sensitivity, "Hard" mode is even lesser sensitive mode and "Sport" mode is the lowest sensitive setting.

    I went to my local Hyundai dealership, got a very understanding service rep from the service dept. He called in the lead technician at their place and they both listened to me about the safety concern about the steering wheel was way too sensitive. It did take me 5 minutes to convince both of them to hear me out. At first they both gave me "need to get used to it" speech, but I told them I just don't want to kill somebody on the road someday when I over correct my steering wheel due to the sensitivity level. And I showed the lead technician the print-out of those blogs about EPS, he agreed that the EPS setting can be changed and he pulled the GDS computer out and changed the mode to "Sport" setting for me in less than 3 minutes.

    Test drove my car with him and my car doesn't wander on the freeway anymore and I don't have to constantly correcting the steering. The lead technician was helpful and happy about that now I don't have the safety concern anymore. Heard story about people will need to go to many dealerships just to get the EPS setting changed because those dealerships refused to do such thing. I must be very lucky that I can convince the people at the dealership at my first attempt and resolved the steering issue.

    Tested my car for another 50 miles freeway run the next day and confirmed that the problem has been eliminated.
  • Final (I hope) update to the wandering issue with my 2013 GLS. I took the car back to the dealership last Friday (8/23) and basically told the Service Adviser to "change the EPS to Sport mode". He was not aware that it could be done. But I mentioned to him it is documented over the internet forum, and even their own Platinum Technician acknowledged it is doable in an earlier visit. Just like others had posted, it took about 10 minutes to complete the change. I even asked them to provide screen prints of the old and the revised EPS settings for my records.

    The feeling now is definitely improved.

    By the way, I have a co-worker who recently bought a 2013 Santa Fe. According to him, it is a standard option on that model to allow the driver to change the settings themselves. In his words, "I changed it to Sport mode and never look back."

    Reading a magazine last week (I think it was the Consumer Report on the 2014 cars), it indicates the 2014 GLS will allow the drivers to change their own EPS settings
  • Can you tell me what the "fix" was for the 2011 steering recall was? Hyundai said they would check possible defective steering bolt connections and update the power steering software free of charge. My brother, Doug was driving his 2011 Sonata at 45MPH and his car crossed a three foot wide center line and crashed head on into an oncoming car. The passenger in the other car was killed and Doug was charged with vehicular manslaughter. He had under the legal limit of alcohol in his system and vicodin. A prescribed pain killer. The amount of pills in the prescription bottle showed that on average he was taking about half of the maximum prescribed dosage. At the trial, witnesses testified that he was driving normal with no erratic signs before he made a sudden left turn. He did not wander into the other lane, like what would be indicative of an impaired driver. The car turned across a three foot center line and into an oncoming car. There was no road to turn into. Expert technicians from Hyundai and the State Police concluded there was no mechanical defects that caused the car to fail. A State trooper auto expert testified that the electric power steering was incapable to turn on it's own. He also said he did not have the technical expertise or equipment to test the power steering. A woman was at the trial to testify of her experience while driving a 2011 Sonata that was also in the recall. She has filed a complaint to NHSTA and documented the story of her steering violently turning left and out of the control of her grip on Youtube (UN: Mommyt100). Her testimony would have directly contradicted the State Trooper's statement, yet the judge denied her to take the stand...really. The jury's verdict was guilty and Doug was sentenced to 5-7 years of prison. He has served about 7 months and is awaiting the slow process of an appeal decision. I sat through the trial and do not see how the jury found him POSITIVELY guilty. I strongly suspect there was a potential defect in the EPS software of the recalled vehicles. I believe the EPS is powered by a 75 amp servo motor. You can turn the steering wheel with one finger when at rest. What would happen if you were going 45MPH and you were turning the wheel left out of a curve (like Doug was) and the Steering computer was getting a signal that you were at rest? Just a thought, but the motor is simply controlled by what the software tells it. I'll appreciate any insight on the recall and any technical knowledge of what could cause EPS to malfunction. Thanks, Shaun
  • Terrible story. Hope everything works out for your bro.

    Below is what I have found concerning the 2011 Sonata steering recall.

    STEERING:GEAR BOX:SHAFT SECTOR
    Recall number: 10V457000
    Recall date: 10/01/2010

    Problem Summary:
    HYUNDAI IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2011 SONATA VEHICLES MANUFACTURED FROM DECEMBER 11, 2009, THROUGH SEPTEMBER 10, 2010. ON SOME OF THESE VEHICLES THE STEERING COLUMN INTERMEDIATE SHAFT UNIVERSAL JOINT CONNECTIONS MAY HAVE BEEN EITHER IMPROPERLY ASSEMBLED OR INSUFFICIENTLY TIGHTENED.

    Consequence:
    IMPROPER ASSEMBLY OR INSUFFICIENT TIGHTENING OF THE CONNECTIONS COULD RESULT IN A COMPLETE SEPARATION OR COMPROMISED ATTACHMENT OF THE CONNECTIONS, SUCH THAT THE DRIVER COULD EXPERIENCE A LOSS OF, OR REDUCTION IN, STEERING CAPABILITY INCREASING THE RISK OF A CRASH.

    Corrective Action:
    DEALERS WILL INSPECT THE STEERING COLUMN INTERMEDIATE SHAFT UNIVERSAL JOINT CONNECTIONS FOR PROPER ASSEMBLY AND TORQUE. IN ADDITION DEALERS WILL UPDATE THE POWER STEERING SOFTWARE FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL BEGAN ON OCTOBER 11, 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT HYUNDAI CUSTOMER SERVICE CENTER AT 1-787-999-3333.

    The manufacturer first notified owners of this recall on 10/11/2010.

    This recall affects vehicles manufactured between 12/11/2009 and 09/10/2010.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    STEERING:GEAR BOX:SHAFT SECTOR
    Recall number: 10V426000
    Recall date: 09/20/2010

    Problem Summary:
    HYUNDAI IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2011 SONATA VEHICLES MANUFACTURED FROM DECEMBER 11, 2009, THROUGH SEPTEMBER 10, 2010. ON SOME OF THESE VEHICLES THE STEERING COLUMN INTERMEDIATE SHAFT UNIVERSAL JOINT CONNECTIONS MAY HAVE BEEN EITHER IMPROPERLY ASSEMBLED OR INSUFFICIENTLY TIGHTENED.

    Consequence:
    IMPROPER ASSEMBLY OR INSUFFICIENT TIGHTENING OF THE CONNECTIONS COULD RESULT IN A COMPLETE SEPARATION OR COMPROMISED ATTACHMENT OF THE CONNECTIONS, SUCH THAT THE DRIVER COULD EXPERIENCE A LOSS OF, OR REDUCTION IN, STEERING CAPABILITY INCREASING THE RISK OF A CRASH.

    Corrective Action:
    DEALERS WILL INSPECT THE STEERING COLUMN INTERMEDIATE SHAFT UNIVERSAL JOINT CONNECTIONS FOR PROPER ASSEMBLY AND TORQUE. IN ADDITION DEALERS WILL UPDATE THE POWER STEERING SOFTWARE FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING OCTOBER 2010. OWNERS MAY CONTACT HYUNDAI CUSTOMER ASSISTANCE CENTER AT 1-800-633-5151.

    The manufacturer first notified owners of this recall on 10/15/2010.

    This recall affects vehicles manufactured between 12/11/2009 and 09/10/2010.
  • ni55ni55 Posts: 4
    I have the same problem with my 2013 Sonata. I called the dealer right away and the sales person that sold me the car told me, "oh, it is EPS so drive with 2 hands..." really? I think she was fired but not sure since she is not there anymore but I took it back to service and they did alignment that didn't help. so, I took a friends car with EPS on a 4 hours trip and it was just fine! the problem is the Sonata's steering.
  • IT's not the EPS. It's the default mode that they have it programmed to. You need to request that they change the steering to Sport mode.
  • ni55ni55 Posts: 4
    I went to the dealer and they said that they never heard of changing mode....
  • Yes, it could be done easily. See my post #48.
  • It's confirmed. The engineers are including a steering mode selector on the 2014 models.

    Driver Selectable Steering ModeEverybody has a different take on steering feel. It’s one of the most personal driver preferences out there. Some want more steering effort, others less. Well, with the Driver Selectable Steering Mode (DSSM) standard on every Sonata, now you get to choose. Select from three modes: Normal, Comfort or Sport by simply touching a button on the steering wheel.
  • @platinumtech13,

    Thank you VERY much for posting on this board. I'm an engineer who wants to truly know what does what. Your post is the ONLY one that helps. I noticed that my wife's new Hyundai Sonata basically lacks the center slop that we're all used to. So, when going from my truck or 2003 camry to the Sonata, I feel like I always have to be correcting the steering. My daughter, who drives the Sonata all the time, says the opposite when she gets into my truck; she complains of the 'dead zone' in the center. But, getting to your point; are you saying that the Sport setting simulates more of the 'center slop' or 'dead zone' (as my daughter would call it). I'd be grateful to discuss this with you via email as I would like to give the 2011 to my daughter and considered buying a new Sonata but was hesitant as my wife prefers the old school 'slop'. Some habits die hard I guess.
  • That is correct. The Sport Mode simulates the old school hydraulic/ belt type of steering. This has completely corrected my issues with having to correct my drive line constantly. I actually had to replace my tires before 12000 miles as the constant correction at highway speeds killed them prematurely. Looking forward to 2014, the new Sonatas will have a selection button so you may control the steering feel yourself, which will be nice.
  • Absolutely. The Sonata has serious steering issues. Changing the sensitivity on the EPS does not resolve the problem (GLS to Sport).

    Turning the wheel left or right from center is a non-issue. But when the wheel is turned one way and then the other, I experience a delay from when the wheel is turned to when the car responds. The delay is tenths of a second. However to put things in perspective:

    Traveling at 70 mph is equivalent to 102.67 feet per second. A ¼ second delay at this speed lapses over 25.67 feet. A ½ second delay lapses over 51.34 feet.

    Furthermore, the delay in response instinctually causes the driver to over correct and the car is uncontrollable as it responds late to every correction of the wheel. My personal belief is that that the issue resides in their electrical box. The 2014 Sonatas have the same problem.

    My case has been forwarded to Regional and Legal divisions. I will update with conclusion.
  • Thanks for those numbers. It really does put things into perspective. Keep us posted!
  • ni55ni55 Posts: 4
    I tried many things and the steering improved a little but it is obvious that there is an issue. I contacted the gov. Safety site and there are a lot of complaints but no one does a thing . The dealer act like it is the first time they ever heard of the problem...what a joke! It is a shame bc other then that the car is very nice
  • dv_13dv_13 Posts: 1
    I had a similar problem but with a bit of a twist. I purchased a 2013 Sonata Turbo in November 2012. At the time I had the dealership install 4 brand new snow tires which were installed at the time I picked up the vehicle. As I drove it home I noticed a pronounced pull to the left. I brought it back the next day (and subsiquently 3 times after that) until they agreed there was a problem and installed 4 brand new snow tires, which seemed to correct the problem. In the spring of 2013 I switched back to the factory tires and rims and low and behold, the pull to the left came back. Again I brought the vehicle back to the dealership (only two times this time). They disputed the fact that the car was pulling until I asked one of the techs to drive it as I sat in the passenger seat. At first he said he didn't notice the problem until we got onto the highway and I asked him to take his hands off the wheel for a second. To which he said "OK, I notice it now." After another trip to the dealership, they apparently 'reset the computer' which corrected the steering. Fast forward to November 25th of this year. Again, I put the snows back on and the pulling reappeared. Actually, the problem from the beginning is twofold. There is a pulling but also the steering wheel will not return to center after turning a corner. Has anyone else come across this problem after switching from summer to winter tires and vice Versa?
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