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Kia Sorento Maintenance and Repair



  • rick201rick201 Posts: 1
    I also have a 2011 Kia Sorento and I had to take it in last Friday (May 20th, 2011) because of a defective sensor for the rear parking assist. They replaced the sensor but the problem was still not solved, they replaced the harness still with no luck, then they replaced the electric module? which they say controls all of the sensors and that still didnt work. At this time they told me they had never seen this and that my vehicle will have to be rewired from back to front. I was pretty angry considering its a brand new car. I told them to keep trying other ways so finally they decided to try and replace all four of the sensors and it worked! I got my car back yesterday (May 26th, 2011) and was happy. Today I leave for work and as I go to put the car in reverse the vehicle makes a loud bang and jerks! I couldn't believe this, so I called Kia back and told them what had just happened and they said that they had heard of this happening and that my computer needs to be reset. I dont know whether to believe them or not because in my opinion there must be something wrong with the transmission in order for that to happen. Is this rebooting of a computer the answer to this problem or will my entire transmission have to be replaced? I am reading about horror stories everywhere online about 2011 Kia Sorentos having to have transmissions replaced if not once but sometimes 2 or 3 times. This is ridiculous and I as a consumer should not have to deal with such things. My car only has 8,500 km on it, its new, the reason I purchased it was so I wouldn't have to be in the garage all the time but Ive pretty much spent the last 2 weeks there. Kia has to realize that they made a huge mistake by rushing an unfinished product out the door and they need to compensate their customers.
  • tutomuttutomut Posts: 1
    Hi all,
    I have a 04 lx 4x4. it's got 47K miles. Recently there's a shake you can feel in the steering wheel and the floor. Starts at 63mph roughly. Had alignment, new tires, rebalancing, new end links. Still shakes. It's really ticking me off now. Dealer hasn't a clue. The shop that did the other work is just guessing, and that tend to add up. Anyone have ideas? I would rather do the work myself, but running out ideas. Rotors, cv, ???
  • stevesxsstevesxs Posts: 1
    hi i have had the same problem my dealer sorted the cruise control it was a wiring loom recall that need to replace a broken wire. stops heavy power steering and surging cruise control.
    the transmission is probably the transfer case oil need to be replaced easy fix but a bit fiddley.
  • hayn5951hayn5951 Posts: 2
    i had some what of the same problem with my 04 serento i smoked the motor and found a vacuum hose off on the drivers side up in the front put hose back on and no more problem
  • hayn5951hayn5951 Posts: 2
    when i make slow tight turns my serento makes a growling noise and mainly rear tires makes a barking noise i have replaced rear end drained and refilled front and rear ends transfer case tranny fluied and refilled all. if i unplug transfer case ele. connecter noise goes away i am thinking it is clutch in transfer case any other ideas
  • Hey, sorry it has taken me so long to get back...I did file a complaint today with the NHTSA. My Sorento has continued to have the ESC off problem since January. It is not frequent, but does happen from time to time. I have not been back to the dealership to fix this problem, although I don't really think they know what the problem is or can fix it. I have also read on another site that I should have the accelerator sensor replaced. I am making an appointment for the end of the month so I'll post what I find out. Cross your fingers!
  • marquithamarquitha Posts: 1
    I have a 2011 Kia Sorento with 20K miles. Recently, after leaving an event for 1 hour, we came out to see our Sorento with what looked like gold and brown "oil" down under the front right tire. We called Kia for roadside assistance, and while they could tow the car, they could not carry my family of four (nor garantee a vehicle for us) to the dealership with the car. We slowly got it to a dealer on our own, where it has now been for nearly 2 weeks and they "still do not know what is wrong with it". They just got permission from Kia to take the engine a part to look for the problem. All they can say is the the Engine Coolant is contaiminated with oil, but they don't know how.

    Needless to say, I am concerned. This is after a recent oil change. After the recall work... Any ideas on what the issue is and have you seen it before?
  • jbilbjbilb Posts: 1
    Does anyone know the problem with a 2004 kia sorento,
    drives fine going straight but when make turns feels like the
    back wheels are locking up.
    Dealer has replaced rear differential, clutch pack assy, and
    still is doing the same problem

    Please any help!!
  • zelbubuthzelbubuth Posts: 1
    edited August 2011
    I also have a 2008 Kia Sorento that we purchased a month ago with 34k miles on it. We also started having the esc off/check engine problem while on a road trip. It happened 10 times in 2 days, but unfortunately we were in the middle of no where when it started happening and had to wait till we got home. Have there been any recalls for this? Seems to be a common occurrence with this model?
  • tony169tony169 Posts: 1
    Hi tskeu, I am interested to get Sorento 2011 in Malaysia. After seeing so many negative feedback of this car from this website, just wonder do you also faced the similiar problem? I can't really find forum about Sorento 2011 in Malaysia until saw your post over here. Appreciate to hear your sharing...Many thanks.
  • what was the recall. I forget.
  • My 2008 Sorento has both High and Low 4x4. And I had the ESC off/check engine light problem, as well. they initally thought it was the transfer case and I had it repaired at a local shop before taking it to Kia who repaired it (or so they thought). Picked it up and it did it again. They finally had to completely replace the sensor. Interesting to know other people have had the same issue. Luckily it was covered under warranty and cost me nothing.
  • I drive a 2007 Sorento off road quite a bit in Oman.

    Last year the car refused to go into 4WD HI when I was in sand. The dealer replaced a "motor" which was quite expensive but covered by the warranty.

    Now I find I can get into 4WD HI only if I stop the car and put it into neutral, which should only be necessary if I want to go into low.

    Has anyone else had any experience along these lines?

    Also, I have the trip-tek (spelling?) transmission. It doesn't hold the vehicle back when I go down steep hills. Rather it pops out of first into second when the rpms get high enough.

    Otherwise, I've been satisfied with the vehicle and the service.
  • Where should i go to fill out one of these forms.. Because im having the same issue. Apparently there was a recall on 2006-2007 kia's for this same issue. I have a 2007 kia sorento.. and once i found out about the recall i took my car in and they said my car was not one of the cars recalled. I explained im having the same problems the other cars were called in for but no luck.. This is a problem that Kia needs to acknowledge and fix. I should not have to worry about manufacturer error, only normal ware and tare.
  • robjtonrobjton Posts: 6
    edited September 2011
    My car is a Kia Sorento 2007. A week ago I turned on my car and noticed THE Check Engine and ESC light on. (If you have warranty the dealership will fix this for you free) My warranty just went out… The dealership wanted to charge $50 to diagnose and $100 plus labor to fix the problem after diagnoses… (I Said No Thanks) This is how I fixed my ESC problem myself.

    1st you must Diagnose the problem:

    Take your car to Auto Zone or Advanced Auto. Ask them to run a diagnostic on your car (its Free)

    After the Diagnostic they will present you with a code. The code I received was: P0504 and P0571, Break Switch circuit A or A/B problem. If the code you’re given is the same as mines then buy the part. The part was around $14.

    How to fix:

    Tools Needed: Brake Switch (The part you just bought from Auto whatever), A flash light and a wrench set. (I bought a small wrench set at home depot for $8.85)


    Inside your car, locate your break petal. Laying on your back follow the stem of the break petal up; there you’ll see the break light switch. Unplug it, press the break petal down in order to unscrew the break switch.

    Once you remove it, place the nut you just unscrewed from the old switch to the new switch and then install the new one. (On the tip of the break switch there is a white appendage that can be pressed in… make sure that part is pressed in by the break petal stem once break petal is released.) Screw it back into place.

    Re-plug the plug you removed and re-connect the battery.
    You should no longer see your Check Engine light or the ESC light.

    Congrats you fixed your own ESC light issue.
    Total price: Around $20-$25 bucks
    Time it took: 1:30hr (Because i was figuring it out as i went)

    This worked for my kia
    Hope this helps you...
  • RE: 2008 KIA Sorento-I just replaced my old 05 Sorento with a new one, so I'm a avid fan of the Sorento. I've had this problem with my 05 and it was a pesky sensor. They can run a quick diagnostic and see if it's related to another issue and isolate the error message. The KIA dealer/mechanic might just need to reset, as was done on mine.
  • thanks for posting this. My sorento has had this problem for over a year now and has been to the dealership to be "fixed." Haha, no fix though. They repleaced the ESC sensor but the problem still exists and they play dumb each time. Anyway, it started again yesterday and this morning I could not get the lights to go off (the check engine and ESC OFF) so I had to drive to work with them on. The car was VERY sluggish and did not want to excelerate. My dad reset the lights by disconecting the battery, but I feel sure it will happen on my way home. My warranty is still good so I will either take it to the dealership with these instructions, for which they will probably scoff at me, or I will ask my dad to try them. I am ready to try anything at this point!
  • dianagold73dianagold73 Posts: 1
    edited September 2011
    In july of 2012 i bought a 2012 kia sorento. Five days later on a trip to vegas, car started to shake while at a stop sign in drive. Drove to the nearest kia dealer and check engine light went on and mechanic said it felt like it was misfiring. Couldn't confirm error codes because codes werent in yet for 2012 vehicles.(Why sell cars w/out knowing error codes?) They test drove car turned off check engine light and said it was probably bad gas and it was safe to take car back. They said if it happened again take to dealer where we bought it. Happened again so we did. They checked codes and said error light not going on car should be fine. On the way home happened again and continued 4 more times. Went back 300 miles told me nothing they can do with out check engine light going on gave me car back. Got home and thought this is wrong i have a child and it feels like my car is going to shut off. So i called and said something needs to be done. I dont feel safe driving this car and we are not lying. Told me to drive back another 300 miles. On the way car shaking even worse and check engine light finally came on again after almost 3000 miles even though problem has continued through out. They said finally they can confirm what is wrong. Called me and wanted to switch cylinders than confirm again by driving until check engine light went on again even though it took over 3000 miles for that to happen last time. They decided to change all fuel injectors and said it was ready to pick up. Drove again 300 miles picked up car drove a mile and started shaking again problem seemed worse. That was saturday now wed still waiting for a call. Should I be calling a lawyer? Second payment due and car not fixed not to mention time and mileage having to drive out there.
  • I have had a 2011 Kia Sorento for about a year now, and wanted to share some of my concerns about the vehicle if you are thinking of buying one. First, I bought the car one day before leaving for a vacation - I drove 2000 miles round trip. The day after I brought the car home, one of the pegs that holds the cargo net in place fell off and I could not use it on the vacation. (When I returned, Kia fixed it but said they weren't really supposed to because it wasn't under warranty). One month later, another peg fell off. Also at that time, the driver's seat began squeaking and groaning when I sat in the seat and upon acceleration. (I'm only 150 lbs!). Fairly annoying for a brand new car. Dealership says it falls under "normal wear and tear." After one month?!

    After I had the car for a year, the backup camera began working only intermittently. Of course, when I take it in for service it works fine. This was a feature that cost extra.

    Overall, I am pleased with the car and it has not failed mechanically yet. But Kia fights a battle concerning quality, and these "little" things do not add to their reputation (or lack of) for being a quality car manufacturer. I took a chance leaving Toyota, and I really don't think these items would have broken in such a short time had I bought a Highlander.
  • I am thinking about purchasing a kia sorento. How is road nosie with this car? I drive a lot of intersate and my toyota is so loud on the intersate. This will be a big issue I want to address before purchasing another car.
    Would greatly appreciate your input.
  • Just curious if you have had any other problems since you replaced the sensor you talk about above? As you can tell from my posts I have the same problem with my 08 Sorento. All info is greatly appreciated!
  • My lease will be up soon on my 2009 Toyota Venza. I am looking to trade it in for something else as the interior quality is not what I would expect from Toyota. I have narrowed my decision down to a handful...Subaru Outback, Kia Sorento, and a few more. What you have posted is disturbing. Have they replied? I visited Edmunds to look for reviews such as yours. I have twin boys who just turned 4. I am only really looking at this because my husband thought it was a great value. Any feedback would be great! Thanks
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    we have the outback and are extremely pleased with it...the 4cyl is plenty for us with great MPG for the size of the vehicle....that would be my recommendation but do a test drive among all your choices...
  • I'm not sure if this has been posted before (way too many search results), but Kia does have an EXCELLENT technical site which will give you the latest TSB's, Recall Campaigns, tools needed, etc... It covers a lot of years ... Kia Global Information System
  • I am having a similar problem, I bought mine a year ago (in US), and over the past few months when I start the car, I hear a big thud as if the compressor is trying to kick in as soon as the car starts. It's annoying as anything. I also noticed that the last time I brought my sorento in and they did a computer update, I think the update reduced the transmission pressure or something because it seems like I don't have the same power as when I first bought it (it's 2011 - V6 LX AWD and only has 8,800 miles)...I am interested to know how you did with your problem.
  • I bought a new 2011 KIA Sorento LX (6A/4-I) in March 2010 and I now have 54,000 miles on it. I'm very happy with my Sorento except for one problem. The cruise control will not set properly all of the time. I turn the cruise control on, get to the speed I want and press the Set button down but some times nothing happens. When this happens, I have to press the Cancel button and then press the Set button down and the cruise control will then set. Also, pressing the SET (-) button down to reduce speed once the cruise control is set will some times cut the cruise control off. The Cruise light does not go off but the Set light does go off, and you then have to reset the speed. My dealer says they cannot duplicate my problem and cannot fix it until it completely breaks. I truly appreciate any help that anyone can give me. Thanks
  • I am familiar with this. This could be as easy as a short in the connection to the cruise control, whereas the cable could have come loose in the engine. I have seen this happen a lot of times with different vehicles especially after work is done.

    The KIA dealership/service is responsible for this under warranty, regardless of where the problem is.
  • Thanks for the info. Please let me know if you find out more information on this issue.
  • 1greatscott1greatscott Posts: 1
    edited November 2011
    That's kind of odd! I also bought my Kia sorento 2011 on 11/30/2010 , manufactured date on my kia is 07/2010. The front AC just blows air only, not cold. I have to turn the rear AC button to get cold air. Then I got a voluntary recall from KIA about the boots. So took it into the dealer, replaced the boot protection, and then this time, I noticed the "thug" noise when the compressor starts. MY hearing is excellent so I can detect slightest noise that is not there before. So I took it to the service center again, and I was told a piece of hose was not properly attached. But this time the AC issues is still not fixed. My car has only 3600 miles on it, and bought the car brand new!
  • Well, not sure if this is a 100% cure to the thud, but, what I found out is that prior to the "thud" noise, I brought my Sorento in for oil change and during the process they did a systme update to the computer.

    This update changed the transmission pressure. When I brought it back, they did a "reset" I guess back to the original specs (prior to update) and now the "thud" is gone.

    Also, the Sorento apparently has a feature where is learns how you drive. I didn't full understand when the mechanic was explaining how it works, but, I am guessing that it increases and decreases trans pressure based on this "learned drive" system which may mean a reset on the cpu every so often.
  • have problem with ESC OFF light staying on I took it to the Kia dealership nearby and had them read the code since auto zone could not. They came up with a code of C1627 which translates to poor signal within the transfer case motor and offered to fix for only $680.00. I think with all that I have read on this forum that they may be guessing. Did you finally get your light to go out?
  • Your car is being miss-diagnosed. Unfortunately as with any product out there, the risk of problems exists. I don't think your car is a lemon. I believe the original diagnosis about a missfire was correct. Which is usually electrical. Could be a bad coil pack, bad spark plugs. In this case it sounds similar, with stalling and shaking at stops, bad coil packs. It is covered under warranty. Don't go outside of the dealer to fix, if they replace all the coil packs, as a precaution if they can't get a code to define which one, could cost to upwards of $1000+ total.

    I hope you were able to resolve this issue.
  • Has any else had issues when fueling this vehicle? After a few dollars are pumped the gas sprays back out and gets you covered in gas. It takes 20 minutes to slowly pump gas to eliminate this from happening.

    This started happening 2 months ago. Mileage was under 70k.

    Here is a thread about it but it is from 2011... x
  • What was the final fix ? Mine is the same problem it was clunking every time i was in the snow or towing or just give it gas.I had to drive like a old lady to not have it clunk on me. the W/O demand Transfer cases are cheap and all over the TOD version is hard to find. what did if finally cost ?
  • For all of you people thinking of buying a Kia, READ THIS. Bought a brand new 2012 Kia Sorento, not a demo, right out of the show room. At 800 km head gasket had to be re-placed. At 1500 km, oil pan seal had to be replaced. At 2000 km engine block had to be replaced. After arguing days with Kia Longueuil and Kia Canada we got them to replace the entire motor instead of re-building my engine. KIA CANADA DOES NOT STAND BEHIND THEIR PRODUCT AT ALL! We requested to have the vehicle changed for a new one from the minute we started having these problems and was told no BUT we will get free oil change. My truck that I paid over 40,000$ for a new vehicle experience has been ruined by Kia Canada. I am now stuck with a hunk of junk . For my loss of time out of the office, anxiety and fear my truck will break down, Kia Canada offered me a free oil change. If I ever sell or trade in my truck..which I will be doing, what do I say when I am asked if any major repairs have been done to the vehicle??
    To my surprise Kia doesn’t stand behind their product. Too bad we do not have a lemon law in Canada. I would Never buy a Kia again!!!! If you research Kia Sorento, I am not the only person to have major problems with the vehicle OR Kia Canada.
  • cmunizcmuniz Posts: 604
    Has anyone installed an after market in-dash navigation unit in their Sorento? If so, are you satisfied and can you provide details. Thanks.
  • I haven't installed one, but, did a lot of research. Check out

    Best site to go to for prices/warranty/info...

    I found it to be better to just buy a garmin or tomtom (preferrably garmin). The in-dash items are pricey and higher quality than the standard stereo that comes with the Sorento. Also you would have to upgrade your speakers otherwise the quality of sound won't be so great.

    If price doesn't matter than definitely check out the web site I listed.
  • cmunizcmuniz Posts: 604
    edited January 2012 2012 EX has the Kia nav system, but I don't like the screen. It is very hard to see in bright sunlight and almost impossible to see if you wear sunglasses while driving. I thought that I would be able to replace it with an aftermarket unit (Kenwood or JVC) and keep all the rest of the functionality such as back-up camera, Sirius radio and steering wheel controls. However, I'm told that none of the after market units are compatible with the Kia electronics so that I would also have to buy a new camera, add a new sirius radio and buy another harness adapter to be able to use the steering wheel controls. By the time it's all done I'll be spending more than $1,500 including installation with no guarantees that it will all work as I want it to. I just wanted to verify all this with an existing Sorento owner. I'll probably do nothing or just buy a portable Garmin like you suggest to use when I can't see the Kia screen.
  • our 2003 kia had the fuel spewing out every time i went to fill went on for about 2 months and took it in to independent mechanic and found the whole fuel system messed up..replaced carbon filter..hoses..had to take tank out to do repairs at a cost of about 600.00 and now 1 year later had to have the fuel pump replaced , :mad: :mad: :mad: the pump itself was 519.00. this is the most absolutely worst vehicle we have ever owned..we spend around 1000.00 and more every year for some kind of replacement or problem on this car. i think all of us kia sorento owners need top place a class action lawsuit on kia...we all have had too many problems an it needs to stop now.
  • have you changed the display to daylight mode? I have no problem seeing mine.
  • there is a voluntary service campaign out there now . it has to do with the filter inside the tank, they will replace your vehicle's fuel tank air filter , at no cost to you. we had to have ours replaced a year ago and now they will not reimburse us , not a surprise tho. i think i'm ready to start a class action lawsuit against kia. not just for the fuel tank but for the thousands of dollars we have spent on our kia just to keep it on the road. hope you get it fixed soon.
  • keep looking for something that is not a money pit...stay away from the kia sorento. wish we had of
  • This is a rough one. I believe mikewallace...gave you the correct info on this problem. A couple things that you didn't mention were if the vehicle was running at the time you were filling it with gas, which may not have to do with the filter, but, pressurization and/or the fuel pump from the beginning. As soon as you mentioned that the independent mechanic replaced hoses for this issue - what was the purpose? Were they clogged or crimped? Is this mechanic reputable? One of the bad things about cars is that you can't really consult anyone before doing the repairs like you can with a doctor so you don't know what you're getting into especially if you need the car fixed immediately.

    One of the bad things that can happen is sludge. You can pump it into your tank and never even know it. It can gum up everything and cause fuel to blow back. Once it gets into your system, expect a lot of problems.

    What was the milage on the vehicle when this started? Have you had check engine lights? Overheating? etc.
  • when i fill a tank, the vehicle is not running at the time, i never do that. the vent line to the fuel tank from the charcoal canister was blocked, which also showed the charcoal canister coming apart internally and they said the hoses from the canister are cracking. the mileage at the time was 130832, there was never a check engine light on and it never has overheated...yet...we just could not pump gas in and everytime we did it would go everywhere , even at a very slow pump so we had to do something because it kept getting worse every time we would pump gas. and yes the mechanic is a very reputable one ..has been doing business for 30 years and i have taken our other 2 cars to them with very good results.
  • Yes, Kia is officially recognizing they have a problem with 2003-2004 fueling on the Sorento as I have received notice in the mail about repairs they will pay for. They even give you an insert for your user manual to let you know these parts should be replace every 30k miles. lol

    I already unload mine partly because of this issue and partly because of the piss poor gas mileage.

    If you need any detail from the official notice, let me know. I would also be curious if the fixes they recommend actually fix the problem.
  • Could you please post some info about what kia sent you, i have not heard from them at all.
    Something like a bulletin number or some reference i could use when contacting them.
  • i assume you are talking about the recall letter? they sent a letter about the vehicles fuel tank air filter, to replace it one time at no cost to us. it is a voluntary service campaign. if this is not what you are talking about i'm not understanding, sorry.
  • i talked to kendra from kia on 1-31-12 and she informed me that kia would not reimburse for repairs already done. i recieved the inserts and added them to the owners manual. i would very much appreciate any details from the offical notice, any help would be great. if the fixes actually fixed the problem i don't know because about a year later we needed our fuel "filter" replaced. the kia kept losing power every time you would step on the gas pedal and it got to where the kia would lose all power and die. the day we took it in to get it replaced our kia stalled 5 times , didn' think we would make it. and to top it all off the fuel filter is located in the fuel pump so that meant we had to buy a fuel pump in the amount of 519.00 pretty expensive fuel filter. this problem is the same crap we have experienced since we have owned it... :lemon: it's a beautiful vehicle but the saying goes " pretty is as pretty does" ......sad because there are alot of us kia owners out there who are in the same boat.
  • 2012 Kia sorento LX AWD. I was driving in the snow a while back and I engaged the 4-wheel drive. I started down a hill and thought I would also try the down hill assist. It made a grinding sound as I went down the hill so I stoped the down hill assist and it stopped. Since then tho, the car seems to be getting worst gas millage, around 16mpg. My wife does drive mostly city miles. I was wondering if this could just be the car breaking it self in, since it onlt has 1400 miles, and this is the gas milage we should be getting or did I break something or mess something up?
  • it is a voluntary service campaign.


    Letter dated Jan 24.

    Why is Kia conducting this service campaign?

    The service campaign is related to the air filter situated near your fuel tank. Over time, the fuel tank air filter accumulates dirt, which can restrict airflow. If the fuel tank air filter is not replaced during regular maintenance the restriction of air flow will eventually reach the point where your vehicle may experience fueling difficulties, such as fuel backflow from the fuel filter neck when refueling the vehicle.

    What will Kia do?

    Kia will replace your vehicle's fuel tank air filter one time, at no cost to you.

    The letter also recommends that once the fuel clicks off not to continue pumping gas.

    If you have any questions or problems with dealers not responding to your service request call Kia's Consumer Assistance Center at 1-800-333-4542 or through the owner's section of

    Letter is signed - Consumer Affairs Department.

    So it appears the numerous complaints caused Kia to acknowledge an issue when refueling and make an attempt to correct it.

    Hope this helps peeps who still have the issue. Maybe if I knew this was coming I would have kept my Sorento. Nah - fuel economy was horrible.
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