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Hyundai Elantra Maintenance and Repair



  • I have had my 2002 Elantra GLS less than a month and I also have that horrifying noise coming from the air conditioner (See Message #20). Does anyone have a solution for this problem? I have had them work on it and they put a new part in the evaporator. It didn't help. Luckily, I had a really nice tech who said most of the techs are "half-deaf" so they don't hear it, but he did and also knew about this noise. Also, another tech on-site, but working for another co. said this is a known issue for Mitsubishi, Hyundai, and some other companies. They are calling the Hyundai tech line to find out about other options. I find it unbearable. I'm glad I'm not alone. Please write me if you have any suggestions.
  • I bought a 2002 elantra gls 11/21/01. I looked in the owners manual about oil viscosity and it gave me a wide range of weights to use. I live outside of chicago, IL. Any feedback on winter and summer weights to use. My ford ranger and dodge caravan use 5w30 all year around.
  • I own a 2000 Elantra wagon GLS with 16k miles. I've had no problems with the car, but the mileage averages 25 mpg. I think this is low for a car this size. I had been commuting about 2 miles a day, and for the past month about 15 miles (round-trip, mostly interstate). Most weeks I drive an additional 60-80 miles on the interstate over a small mountain. I use the A/C on and off in the summer.
    The mileage will vary a lot with local driving. One tank will be 20 mpg, the next 30. I usually refill around 150 miles. The varying mileage doesn't seem to have much to do with how I drive and I'm careful to fill the tank completely, especially if it's taking less gas than I expect.
    I mentioned the mileage to the dealer once and they became very defensive. Since the car runs well, I'm not interested in any major work. I tried changing the air filter, but no change. Has anyone found anything that improves their mileage? Thanks.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Their house brand (Super Tech) is really Quaker State. It's not ILSAC GF-3/SL yet, but assume they'll change over in the next few months. SL oil has a high synthetic component. I try to keep a 4000 mile change interval and insist that they substitute a SuperTech (Champion Labs) filter for the Fram (I hang signs all over the dash--NO FRAM).

    I use 10-30 except for the most recent change (winter) 5W30. I think 10W30 is their preferred weight. I use 5W30 year around for those cars where the manual recommends it. Hyundai is rather unique for allowing 10W40 oil. Haven't seen that on a recommended list in almost twenty years, and don't think I'd want to try it.

    If you're into synthetics, I'd recommend 10W30 all year long.
  • Yesterday while driving my 2002 GLS (280 miles) I noticed a quirk in the automatic transmission very similar to the one described by riborn (message #3). Namely, the transmission would delay and the engine would rev approximately 1,000 rpm before shifting from 2nd to 3rd gear.

    erk3 (message #19) reported the same quirk, and cjaccetta (message #6) reported his GT also delayed slightly (but without the rpm increase).

    I didn't notice the problem this morning on my way to work, however, and the shifts are crisper if I accelerate more quickly. I'll monitor it closely from now on, though.

    In the meantime, I'd be very curious to hear updates from those of you who experienced this quirk. Have you had any additional problems? What did the dealer say when/if you took it in for service?

    Any info/updates would be much appreciated. Thanks.
  • Hello pghguy,

    The problem is actually the tranmmission computer getting familiar with your acceleration patterns. The delay in shifting should be gone after you have driven the car for a longer period of time- the tranmission is simply adapting to the way you accelerate. I believe the feature is called, "Hyundai Intelligent Vehicle Control" (HIVC).
  • And when I went back to check the gas cap, it seemed loose (never getting gas again without checking - in NY they don't let you pump your own!), so I suspect the check engine light came on because it wasn't put back on properly (or at all). Do I need to go to the dealership to get the light off/reset, or will filling it with gas suffice? The fellow at the dealership told me on the phone the light comes on because air gets into the gas tank....any voices of experience would be appreciated!
  • I now have almost 9500 miles on my 2001 GT and have observed this curious "shift flare" between 2nd and 3rd gear.I've read several definitions of this...seems to vary from vehicle to vehicle,some of ya refer to a needed fix in the Power Control Module,others speak of the tranny adjusting to the driver's habits.For those interested here's some aspects I've noticed on mine:
    1) my rpms have not "flared" more than 500,ever.
    2) the flare-up is indicated on the tachometer only,no speed increase.
    3) prior to my current milage(9500)it use to occur wether the engine was cold or warm.After I passed 8500 it now seems to go away after I've been driving about half an hour.
    4) when the engine is cold or inactive for awhile,the process repeats itself.
    5) the most interesting thing for me is how it's been going away once the vehicle warms up(ie less of a problem than before)
    It's a quirky thing alright but it's the only quirk I've got in an otherwise problem-free car.
  • Anyone else had any problems with their rear door seals on their GLS? I have an '01, and the seals keep sagging. I'm going to have the dealer replace them, but wondered if it was a design flaw or just my car.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    When my '01 GLS was new (November '01) I noticed that the seal on the driver's side rear door was loose in one place, i.e. a couple of the plastic fasteners popped out of their holes. Is that like the "sagging" you noticed? I popped the fasteners back in place and have not had any further problem with the door seals. Since then I've waxed the door jambs a couple of times and rubbed Armor All on the door seals, which I do routinely on all my cars. It may help prevent the seals from sticking.
  • my '01 makes a buzzing noise when accelerating- it seems to be coming from the right side near the center console. Not only am I getting a buzzing noise from that spot but another buzzing noise is coming from a location near my ear- I thought it was the seat belt harness- this sound only starts when I the vehicle is moving. Very irritating.
  • I hate to pay someone to do something I should be able to do myself. I have a 2001 GLS and want to take out the factory cassette and install an after market CD. It looks like there is no way to get to it from under the dash. I called the dealer who said no problem just use a screw driver to pop off the face plate slide the old one out and the new one in. I tried that and it looks like the face plate won't come out unless you remove the dark color plastic trim that surrounds the ash tray, heat A/C controls, radio, insturment cluster. Does this have to come off?Then the way the dash is shaped the trim ring on the new CD won't fit in flush like the original did. Any suggestions, other than pay a professional to do it, will be appreciated.
  • hoy75hoy75 Posts: 2
    I just bought 2001 elantra and changed into after market CD...
    this is how to...
    1. remove ash tray
    (there is bar over the ash tray, pull ash tray while pushing the bar)
    2. there are 2 screws the place where ash tray was unscrew.. and there are 2 more in the gauge area
    3. pull the face plate from ash tray section.
    (It needs some force but not too much...You don't want to pay to order new faceplate)
    4. during pulling there are some connections in the cigar lighter UNCONNECT IT
    and there are some more connection in clock and emergency lights and dimmer in opposite side...unconnect these things.
    5. There you can see 6 screws beside of audio..Because audio and shelf areas are connected...
    You should remove 6 screws...

    6.Finally you disassembly audio.

    change audio and re assembly

    If you have questions please leave messages on here
  • hoy75, Thank you, your instructions were right on. I had tried removing the four screws but the face plate still felt so solid I was afraid I would crack it. The temperature in Baltimore has dipped in the 20's, I think the cold makes the plastic more brittle. I placed a small ceramic disk heater in the car for a few hours to heat things up prior to pulling the face plate. The install looks and sounds great, but I hope I don't have to do it again any time soon. The mounting brackets on the factory unit would not work on the new CD. Also, the way the face plate is designed the insert that came with the new CD wouldn't work either. I finally decided to cut, bend and drill my own mounting brackets. Alls well that ends well, I guess. Thanks again.
  • hoy75hoy75 Posts: 2
    Glad to hear that..
    Engineers in hyundai don't think about replacement to after market audio...
    Mainly because they only think about In-land (Korea)customers.. In korea, market of after market audio is not so big enough.. and most people just satisfy with the factory installed audio.
    Furthermore.. there were some car-audio theft cases.. so designer designed parts difficult for people to open and replace...
  • I purchased my 01 Elantra GLS in late January 2001. Since then, I've been back to Maxon Hyundai Service Department 3 times for the same problem. The fuel door releases but does NOT open. I have to carry a very small plastic spatula with me at all times to pry open the fuel door after I release it using the interior fuel door release. What a pain in the a$$ this has become!!!

    This has occurred all year regardless if cold or warm weather. It happened in the summer when I would go to fill-up my tank on my way to work at about 6:45 AM. The only time the fuel door springs open is after the car has been sitting in the sun for several hours.

    The spring is the problem, I'm certain. How can I increase the tension on the spring? Now with winter upon us, the fuel door won't budge in the AM or PM!

    Forget WD-40 (it's been tried), dealer has tightened cable, but spring is the culprit so the fuel door remains "unlatched" but won't open. Maxon Service Department did absolutely nothing the last time I brought it in (12/28). Called today and asked to speak with the Service / Parts Director. I was told he was with a customer. I left a message and waited all day. I'm still waiting for that call back ...

    This problem along with several other minor ones is starting to shake my confidence in Hyundai. Great warranty but we don't fix the problem ... they just ignore it and hope the customer just resigns himself/herself to live with the problem or go somewhere else.

    After owning the car for about one year, if I had to make the "buy" decision today, I'd buy a Honda Civic EX. I owned 3 Hondas before deciding to give Hyundai a chance. NEVER had a problem!!! By the way, in NJ, the Honda Civic EX is $300 cheaper on insurance than the Hyundai Elantra for identical coverage!

    Live and learn ...

    If anyone has ANY helpful insights on the fuel door problem, I'd REALLY appreciate your kind advice. If anyone has any recommendations on a good Hyundai Service Dept. in NJ, I'm all EARS. I won't go back to Maxon Hyundai under ANY circumstances.
  • mpgmanmpgman Posts: 723
    Had to replance an oil pan assembly because a Hyundai dealer technician overtorqued the plug. I am in touch with national customer service to get them to pay for it. Seems that one of the fixes is to install an aftermarket oversized plug. The service manager at the offending dealership, Alexandria Hyundai in VA., claimed that there are problems with 2001 Elantra oil pans. No one else has heard about this. Anyone of you hear about it? Happy New Year all!
  • My new oil pan is in but I'm waiting to get it installed (under warranty). Problem at the first oil change, the tech could have stripped it, or as the parts counter man said he has seen several new pans come in and believes they were over tightened at the factory. After a close up look at the new pan it is cast aluminum with a steel plug (the new plug is longer than orig). Anyhow too much torque on the steel plug will pull the alum threads right out. Be careful if doing your own or keep a eye out for leeks at the plug if car is serviced.
  • Hello,

    I have the same problem with my fuel door as chameleon3. I just tap on mine when i doesnt open, pull the release again and it usually opens rithe up. Now that i hear that this problem may get worse, i will try to come up with a solution that is more permanent and if i succeed, I will post it
  • shado4shado4 Posts: 287
    I have a similar problem with the fuel door on my 02 Elantra GT. The three times I've stopped for fuel since I bought the car I always have to pull the release lever twice before the door springs open.

    I'll have the dealership take a look at it next Wednesday since I've already scheduled an appointment to have them fix (I hope!) a REALLY ANNOYING buzzing/rattle coming from the front passenger door area. This sound is driving me bonkers!

    Anyone else have this buzzing sound?
  • Hello Shado4,

    I am experiencing that same problem on the passenger side door- it is buzzing and extremely annoying. I am also experiencing a buzzing noise by my head whenever I am driving. Additionally, I am experiencing a buzzing noise when accelerating out of first gear. Lastly, I am also experiencing the same problem with opening the gas door. I have yet to take my gls to the dealership because I don't think that will be able to fix the problem.
  • I have a buzzing sound as well. I first thought it was coming from the passenger side door, and couldn't believe my wife thought it was coming from my side of the car. Well, it was on neither side.

    It was coming from the reading lamps. All, I needed to do to stop the buzzing was put my finger on it. Of course, once I let it go, it would keep buzzing (usually just on course roads).

    I need to take it into the dealership to fix the fuel door (not opening), one of the reading lights went out, and of course ask about the buzzing noise. I will let you know what I find out.
  • Thanks for the idea - I will try that tonight. Please let me know what the dealer comes up with on that buzzing sound & the fuel door.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    There was a post on one of the Elantra boards a few weeks ago about a solution to buzzing from the front passenger door. The fix involved removing the screw(s) that attach the plastic door panel to the door and adding a couple of thin rubber washers to each screw. The same post talked about a rattle in the seat belt retractor that involved a more complex fix, but all the details were provided.
  • Thanks for the recommendations I found the posting. It was put up by a browney a few weeks ago. I will try this and see what happens.
  • edovidedovid Posts: 22
    Has anyone noticed a problem with the central locking system? On my 2000 GLS, the locks work most of the time, but once in a while, the three passengers door locks won't, requiring manual locking, which is a pain. I don't feel there's any use going to the dealer yet, since they'll work fine there and no one will fix it unless they can see a problem.
  • shado4shado4 Posts: 287
    Well, I took my GT in today to have the buzzing sound fixed. Good news...they isolated the sound as coming from the right front door panel and was caused by the screws that mount the panel to the door being loose. They tightened all the screws and, voila, no more buzzing sound! I only hope the fix is permanent and won't be a recurring problem.

    In my haste to get rid of the buzzing sound I completely forgot to have the dealership check the fuel filler door problem. On my last fill up 2 days ago it took THREE pulls of the lever to get the fuel door to pop open. Keeping my fingers crossed that this is an easy fix.
  • Thanks Shado4,

    I will be going to the dealership with that information. I hope they can isolate the sound and fix it without having to leave the vehicle at the dealership.
  • Hi,

    I need help because my dealership is having trouble fixing this loose sound that comes from the front engine area and is most noticeable while driving in cold weather (California cold, not real cold weather). This problem has plagued me since I bought my 'O1 Elantra last August.

    Since the problem quiets down or even seems to disappear after warmup and because I don't have a check engine light on, the dealer has had it at least five times (day/night) without being able to fix it. I was first told they couldn't hear it because it started off very softly, like a piece of gravel tumbling in the engine. At that point, it was suggested that it was the "lifters" delivering the oil from the pan to the engine and not to worry. As time passed though, it became more obvious. A second service tech said it could be cold cellinoids (normal, nothing to prevent it). A third tech tightened a shield in the exhaust system shortly before Christmas but it made no difference. I have yet to go back until, hopefully, I can find more clues from folks here.

    So far, I have had two people put their ear to the car while I press the accelerator in park (initially, acceleration was the only way to hear it but now you can sometimes hear it—albeit softly—during idling too).

    The first person to put an ear to my engine while the hood was open reports a sort of popping sound right beneath the engine cover. The second person heard the noise while standing outside the passenger side while the hood was down. They say it sounds as if it's coming from the front passenger wheel area, which just so happens to be the same area that was replaced for a creaky strut assembly two months ago. From the drivers' position, I would have to agree with the first person: It sounds like it's coming from the area smack in-between/beneath the two windshield washer nozzles on the hood.

    My other problem is really more of a question:

    I had spots on my car right from delivery that would not come off. They were mineral deposits collected during the time on the lot when the car was not thoroughly dried. An acid wash performed by the dealer shortly after purchase helped but didn’t totally eliminate the problem. Since, I’ve waxed it with Zbest, McGuires Polish/Cleaner, Turtle, etc. Even so, after the misfortune of going through a automated car wash at a gas station and forgetting to select “dry,” I now have water spots—some as large as a quarter thanks to the wax that apparently was intact just enough to bead the water but not enough to protect the clearcoat. I also have swirl marks all over from trying to wax these spots off. It's not obvious from a distance or under very bright sunlight because I have the "Champagne" color. I have had cheaper cars with darker paint that were much more resistant. Obviously, I want this problem fixed. Has anyone ever had success getting a dealer to do this? If so, how should I go about asking for a new paint job?

    Any suggestions about either problem?

    Sorry for the long post but I also have a tip for those who hear a squeal or grinding noise from the A/C. I heard this same noise at various dealerships I visited while test driving Hyundais this previous summer. In each case, I noticed that the air conditioning/starter were engaged simultaneously. Here’s what I do to avoid it:

    • Switch the A/C to the Off position before you turn the car on/off. If at all possible, wait until the car warms up (the needle moves slightly above the “C”) before you turn the fan and/or heat/air conditioning on. This tip also helps to prevent the overly cold or hot air that blasts from the vents before the engine is ready to pump out the heat or cold levels you desire.



    A Jan. 8, 2001 news report published in the Orange County Register, "Engine Failures Hit Hyundai SUVs", contains a sidebar which states that many Elantra's have faulty side airbag sensors. As of this writing, there is no official recall for this or any of the other problems mentioned in the article. If you are concerned, inquire at your dealer. To read the article see: or do a title or keyword search at
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    Hyundai did in fact do a recall for this problem in October 2000, affecting a few hundred of the first '01 Elantra GLSs in the U.S. (mine included). One telltale sign of the problem is that the airbag light does not go out, so it is pretty obvious if you have a car with this problem. Also, it should only apply to very early '01 GLSs.

    BTW... why is this "important info for all Hyundai owners"? At worst, these defects affect a few hundred owners of Santa Fes and '01 Elantras.
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