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Hyundai Sonata Brakes



  • Immediate Attention.....All Hyundai owners should check to see if their Emergency/Parking brakes work correctly.

    All vehicles made after 2006, all Hyundai models, with the pull lever type of Emergency/Parking brake assemblies should be checked to see that their Emergency/Parking brakes work correctly.

    Additionally, if you have had any rear brake work done on your vehicle that required removing the rear rotors or emergency/parking brake work done; more than likely...the service technicians did not repair it correctly...not repairing or making adjustments to your vehicle according to Hyundai Official Repair/Service manuals.

    Apparently, someone dropped the ball at Hyundai Motor America and did not place a requirement for a force push/pull gauge on the Hyundai service departments.

    Bottom line...all levels and all certifications of Service Techs, Field Service Engineers and Hyundai Representative do not have the necessary tools on-hand to perform EMERGENCY / PARKING BRAKE INSPECTION AND ADJUSTMENT PROCEDURES CORRECTLY, SO THEY SKIP THE OFFICIAL PROCEDURES.

    Skipping these procedures could lead to emergency/parking brake drag when the brake lever is not set or the parking brake not functioning when you believe you have set the emergency/parking brake.

    Step 1. Block the front tires so the vehicle will not roll.

    Step 2. Raise the vehicle as if you were going to change the driver’s side rear tire.

    Step 3. Rotate driver’s side tire while the brake is in the released position. If you feel any drag or hear a rubbing noise, your emergency/parking brake may be dragging. If you suspect dragging, lift the emergency/parking brake lever 1 click, if the drag feeling has intensified or you cannot move the wheel, then your emergency/parking brakes need to be adjusted.

    Repeat the above steps on the passenger’s side rear tire.

    Now that you know your emergency/parking brakes are not dragging, check to see if the emergency/parking brake will hold the vehicle.

    Step 1. While a driver is in the vehicle, release the emergency/parking brake lever.

    Step 2. Pull the emergency/parking brake lever up 4 clicks from the released position. Be prepared to step on your normal brakes...Place the vehicle in idle speed...

    Does the vehicle move?

    If YES, Repeat the above step with the lever pulled up an additional click each time until you reach 8 clicks from the released position.

    Make note when the emergency/parking brake actually holds the vehicle.

    If your emergency/parking brakes do not hold the car when the lever is pulled 8 clicks from the released position (where the adjustment is check according to the official manuals and around 44 LBs of pull force maximum is need to raise the lever 8 clicks), then your emergency/parking brake is not adjusted correctly.

    When you take your vehicle in to have your emergency/parking brakes adjusted...ask that you be allowed to see the technician use a force push/pull gauge during the inspection/adjustment procedures.

    Additionally, if you identify a problem...please email Hyundai Motor America customer service at and have them document you issue...have them give you a case number.... this is the only way a TSB or recall will be issued, since the servicing departments are skipping the official inspection steps.

    Good luck
  • ayeuayeu Posts: 41
    My '07 GLS needed brakes at 11 months/ 21,000 miles - mostly highway driving - not a lot of stops. My Hyundai dealer says they have a chronic rust problem "in a high road salt environment" that causes the pads to stick in the corroded pad brackets. Mine were not releasing fully and were rubbing on the rotor. The dealer recommends a $130 procedure every 15,000 miles to disassemble the brakes, lube the slides and reassemble. Ridiculous if you ask me, but I've had it done twice because of noise. That costs you a penny a mile to keep your brakes functioning!
    I've lived in "salty" Ohio over 30 years and never had to do this and I've driven lots of cars lots of miles. I replaced front pads and rotors on my 2000 Mazda Protege at 60,000 and 110,000 miles and rear shoes at 90,000. No lubing the slides in between, either!
  • sticks57sticks57 Posts: 3
    I bought a Sonata GLS in November of 2007. Two weeks ago, with just 14,400 miles on the odometer, the right rear brakes began to sqeak. Of course it went away with brake application. After it got really noisey I called the dealer and was told that the brakes build up rust due to the chemicals that are put on the roads in the winter. Then the red flag went up when he said, "Call me if the rear wheels are hot." Well they certainly were as they had been dragging for quite some time. No wonder my gas mileage had been going down. I took the carin to the dealer and they took all 4 wheels off and serviced the pads. I asked if this was covered under warranty and they said "NOT." Total cost $130. I then sent a letter to Hyundai Customer Service pointing out that this was a safety issue and not normal wear and tear. Well I could have saved the effort as they won't come up with a dime. I have had at least 30 cars in my lifetime and not one of them had rear brake problems this early like this 2008 Sonata. NEWS FLASH to Hyundai; They put stuff on the roads up here in northern Ohio to melt ice and snow. If I have to go back in in another 14,400 miles and have this service done again, then this will be the first and last Hyundai I ever buy. So much for their great warranty.
  • ayeuayeu Posts: 41
    Sticks - I'm certainly not defending Hyundai, but a friend of mine, to whom I had told this story, recently told me that his Honda dealer told him he had the same problem with his Accord. Is your dealer in Streetsboro? I give them credit for at least identifying the problem and recommending how to address it. The Service Manager is frustrated with it. I called Hyundai and they deny the problem.
  • ssuydamssuydam Posts: 2
    Well I just left the Hyundai dealership in Streetsboro. Funny, no mention by Sheldon the service manager of this chronic problem to me. Sheldon did however want to repair the problem for $500.00. My brakes hung-up and now my rotors are scored so much so that they can't be turned. My car has 20,000 miles on it! I'll never buy a Hyundai again, and Great Lakes Hyundai should be investigated for not informing me as the customer of the ongoing problem.
  • sticks57sticks57 Posts: 3
    Aveu- you guessed it right. It is the dealer in Streetsboro. When I contacted Hyundai Customer Service, they said that they only had a couple of inqueries about rust and pads. That is hard to believe. This isn't so much a problem with the dealer, as it is with Hyundai not standing behind their product.
  • I had the same problem with 2 of my 2007 Sonatas. My dealer fixed the problem at no charge to me. They said that there's always "rust" build up from our weather and that it just needed to be scraped. I've not had a problem with the brakes since they were fixed last winter.
  • Same deal here with my 2007 Sonata in NH. Took it to a dealer because it was chirping and then I smelled a burning odor back by my left rear wheel. He said road salt was corroding the brakes. They were seeing a lot of these and have been complaining to Hyundai with no response. Cost me $400 to resurface rear rotors and replace pads (they also needed to service the front brakes). They said I need to get the rust ground off every 15,000. So I started checking online and discovered a number of similar complaints. This is a safety issue. I ended up filing a safety complaint with the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI)at theNHTA. I suggest you do the same.
  • klem747klem747 Posts: 1
    On my 2007 Sonata 4cyl., with 16,000 miles, my rear brakes were grinding.
    Upon further investigation, I found that the rotor was rusty, which caused my rear brake pads to wear prematurely. I live in Chicago, where they use road salt. It appears that drivers in winter conditions, are having the same problem. I am going to the dealer to have them look at it. If they say it is not under warranty, which I think they will, I might consider legal action against Hyundai. Is anyone else for this?
  • I'd suggest you do what I did: file a complaint with the NHTSA at (You will see other similar complaints there.)

    According to my dealer, Hyundai is well aware but currently doing nothing. If consumers file complaints with NHTSA, we might see a recall. The idea of having my brakes serviced annually because substandard materials were used is not sitting well with me.
  • targettuningtargettuning Posts: 1,371
    Suprise!!! all brake rotors are susceptable to rust because they are untreated iron. The surfaced area (where the pads grip the rotors when applied) is machined smooth but still an untreated iron alloy. Each and every car I have ever owned with disc brakes (including our 2006 Honda Civic) shows light rust virtually within hours of parking it if rain is involved i.e. driving through puddles then parking the car in the drive and if no rain is involved i.e. if the car is parked for a week-end without use light rust STILL is evident through humidity in the air. So, within a few (1 or 2 ) light applications of the brakes will polish or scrub this off. As to the hubs (the non polished or machined surfaces) they too are iron and yes, they will sometimes rust heavily and if the car is used in high salt/chemical use areas in the winter without washing the car frequently they (the rotors) will certainly need replacement. As an example my fathers car, a 1999 Subaru (purchased new) which was driven on very short trips through much of its life (my father was 86 when he passed 2 years ago and didn't drive much or far) needed both front and rear rotors replaced due to heavy rust on the hubs even though the car had less than 40K miles. It was driven in western PA slop parked unwashed through most of the winter and as a result the rotors suffered badly. This is not a "problem' (if it IS a problem) punishable by death but I believe rather common throughout the auto industry since, as stated, rotors are by design untreated iron.
  • ssuydamssuydam Posts: 2
    Let me give you an update on my experience after the previous post. I called the Hyundai hotline that the service manager gave to inform the corporation of the problem with my brakes. Another funny thing, the guy who answered the hotline told me that he has never heard of this "unique" problem of the rear brakes sticking with so little miles on them. I think both the Streetsboro dealership and the Hyundai Corporation are complicit in their criminal ways! My lease is almost up and I'm counting the days on which I drive my last Hyundai. BTW I fixed my brakes myself for about $24.00 sure beats the $500.00 that the dealership tried to pry out of me. Next up: either a 2010 Ford Fusion or 2009 Chevy Malibu!
  • jimmyc3jimmyc3 Posts: 8
    i have a leased 2006 sonata with the same break problem. high pitched squeeky sound that stops when the breaks are applied, then starts again when accelerating. it sometimes stops if i pulsate the break pedal a little. the rear driver side went first at 20k miles, and both were replaced. now the rear passenger side is starting to squeal with 33k miles on the vehicle. i can't wait to turn in this lease. i don't think i should get another sonata. does anyone know if the genesis has the same problem?
  • bhmr59bhmr59 Posts: 1,598
    Sheesh, how long did you lease this car for? I bought my '05 in April '05, just about 2 months before the '06's came out.

    Your daily drive must be hard on the brakes for a rear break to wear out in 20K miles, or else the parking brake was dragging.
  • jimmyc3jimmyc3 Posts: 8
    i don't have a rough commute and our winters are not really bad in morris county nj. i was told by the service at hyundai that the brake problem is due to a build up of rust and debris. he said if i use the emergency brake often it will help to prevent the problem (even though i have an AUTOMATIC '06 sonata).
  • I think I've got a similar issue. I live in St Paul MN and just took my car to the Hyundai dealership service dept b/c I was starting to hear a whistling sound and rear wheel grinding. After a 2 1/2 hour inspection of the brakes they wanted me to pay $650 to get the break pads and rotars replaced. My 2007 Sonata only has 23500 miles. After a $44 dollar inspection I left without any services being performed. I don't feel like one should have to do such repairs on a 2007 vehicle that only has 23500 miles. While at the Hyundai shop a lady who works in sales came by and asked me what I was having done because I'd been there so long. She told me she has a 2007 Sonata and had a similar problem and strongly recommended that I contact Hyundai Customer Service.

    I ended up taking my car to Tires Plus (where they do FREE INSPECTIONS) and have much more reasonable rates (and they price matched MIDAS'S price). They replaced my break pads. The rotars were not repaired b/c they had to be specially ordered. I was told that 2007 Hyundai rotars have to come from the dealership and I do not want to pay what they charge for their rotars on this vehicle. I am not happy at all.
  • If I were you I would definitely let Hyundai Customer Service know you are unhappy. Let them know you've read about similar incidents in online forums. And finally, file a complaint with NHTSA, the National Highway Transportation and Safety Board. From what I understand, auto manufacturers (not just Hyundai) can sit on complaints indefinitely, but if they know the NHTSA is investigating, they get a little more serious about it.

    Personally, I would like to see a recall. I am NOT happy about facing expensive brake work every 15,000 miles. One reason I bought this car was because I was assured it was low maintenance and had a good reputation. Hyundai is blowing their reputation here.
    You people need to get over it, it's a car. No matter what kind of vehicle you have your're gonna have issues with the brakes because of the climate you live in. Down here in the south,Georgia to be exact, I only had to replace my front brake pads at 55k miles and it only cost me $90.00 due to the fact that a buddy of mine is a Hyundai Tech, so I paid $50.00 for the part and gave him $40.00 for putting them on for me. If I had them done at the dealership it would have cost me about $250.00. Now I don't know what they(NHTSA) can really do considering this problem only happens in winter states during winter season. Does anyone have this issue during the summer months up there?
  • targettuningtargettuning Posts: 1,371
    I have already posted a "general" explanation concerning brake rotor rust however it seems several posters are undeterred about "blaming" Hyundai and or filing reports with NHTSA. The description concerning your experience about having a brake service every 15,000 miles to aleviate this rust issue is vague. I personally live in the rust belt and Pa has never been accused of skimping on salt/corrosive liquid chemical snow and ice removal application and yet I have never experienced a need to have rust "ground" off my rotors every XXX miles. The rotor and pad interaction (when the brakes are applied) burnishes off any light rust that WILL form on the rotor overnight or when the car sets idle for any period of time. I have owned Hyundai products and in this respect they were/are no different from the Honda Civic we now own. I also own a 1995 Dodge Stratus and by coincidence just had the front pads replaced this past week-end. I had the opportunity to see my front rotors (approx 2 years old ) and they are clean with no evidence of any excess rust. I drive this car summer and winter and accrue over 22,000 miles per year. I do wash the car frequently especially in the winter (to the tune of several times a week) so does that have a bearing??? I am sorry but I simply cannot see a reason to believe this should be a Hyundai problem or a problem at all for that matter.
  • haidonghaidong Posts: 16
    I have the same problem, The dust built in my real rotor, then the dealer said the pad was worn out and the rotor could be resurfaced. I have to spend $400 to change all my rear brake. I contact with Hyundai, they blamed I did not maintain the car and I am in the high salt area. I am in MA.

    I will fill the complain, could we go further ?
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