Suzuki XL-7 Problems and Solutions

steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
Ask about issues and post your solutions here.


  • einakineinakin Member Posts: 1
    My wife has an 02 XL-7 and on start up it make a rubbing plastic sound for about 2-3 seconds and goes away I can't pin point where it is coming from and it also has the problem with the 4wd that once you turn it on it won't come out until you stop and put it into reverse. :cry:
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    :) Next time, have someone start it for you while you stand out in front of the truck. Listen for the noise to occur. If it centers around the front of the engine near the bottom, it is probably the timing chain tensioner. If you purchased your truck after August 2002 and have less than 100K miles, you should be able to get it worked on under warranty. If you purchase it before August 2002 and have more than 3years and/or 36K miles on it, you will have to cover the repairs yourself. My guess is that it is the tensioner.

    Also if you have trouble disengaging the 4-wheel drive system, make sure you are driving on properly inflated tires and that you are driving straight. From what I have read and what others have said, this can be normal. The 4X4 system is not meant to be used when you have good traction. It could bind up. One big reason for the binding improper use, but if you are certain that you are using it right, it could be mismatched tires, improper inflation, and other tire related problems. The tires must all be rotating at the same rate to properly disengage the system.

    BTW, much of the talk on the timing chain issue seems to indicate that the use of bad filters and the wrong oil either causes the problem or makes it happen quicker. Many of the recommendations are to use the lightest weight oil for the truck, and to use a good filter like the OEM Suzuki filters. Some have said that the Purolator Pure One and Wix filters are just as good. I have used many different brands, but never generic or Fram filters.
  • flyingnflyingn Member Posts: 213
    This is 100% normal. ALL XL7's (with abs) do this. Its the ABS going thru a test cycle as the car truck begines to move.

  • predatorpredator Member Posts: 3
    I have a 2001 XL-7 with 37000 miles on it and the timing chain just went out. I'm the original owner and did all the maintenance as scheduled. I want to know if this is a common problem because this shouldn't happen to any brand or make till 80000 + miles. I have taken it to the dealer and so far their response has been they won't cover it and want $1500 to repair it.
  • jrvallejojrvallejo Member Posts: 5
    I had the same problem, but mine started right after 85,000 miles the problem was the famous Timing chain adjusters, my dealer told me that between 2001 and 2003 the adjusters came defective. I also keep all maintenance done to it but they went out on me, the job cost me $1350.00 and it wasn't fun. Also be aware that the timing chain is self adjust you would never had to replace it unless you won't do any maintenance at all. like change the oil. which is pretty crucial if you don't want to have the same problem again. Hopefully this answer your question..
  • beachbrumbeachbrum Member Posts: 16
    Would someone please describe the sounds the engine makes and how the vehicle drives that would indicate the timing chain adjuster is going bad. I have an 01 XL7 with about 54000 miles on it and runs great but don't want my timing chain to go out on me and a bad time.

    I am assuming Suzuki did not extend the warranty for this particular item. Unfortunately, 2001 was 3/36 warranty.

  • 03spyder03spyder Member Posts: 1
    I have just purchased a 2005 xl7 5 passenger. I did not get an owners manual with it. How do you fold the back seats flat? is there a hidden lever somewhere Im missing.

    many thanks for the help.

  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Need some more solutions! :blush:
  • 3stix3stix Member Posts: 1
    My wife drives a 2004 XL-7 and we've had problems in the past with the passenger seat sensor. Dealer had to replace it once because of a "mystery" code they got when they hooked it up to the computer in the dealer shop. Still very sensitive, cant put anything on the seat without it beeping. Service manager keeps saying it the same in all the others on the lot.
    Also had a problem with the remote not working, Service manager wouldn't do anything about it till he saw it happen, so that was about 3 trips to the dealer, then one of the reps tells me that its a known problem with the contact plates on the doors. Had them replaced and it worked fine.
  • poppins6poppins6 Member Posts: 1
    We have recently purchased a Suzuki XL-7 (2005 model) which has done only 25,000 kms. When we start the car every morning it revs so high and when you put it into reverse it almost takes off like a jet. The high revving sound when we start the car is very annoying and we feel it could also be using unnecessary fuel. Can anyone shed some light on the matter, as to why it revs so high, is it normal, or how can we fix it. We took it back to the Warranty dealer, who put it on the computer, and said there was nothing wrong? What do we do next?

    cheers, poppins6 :confuse: :lemon:
  • wingman3wingman3 Member Posts: 13
    Hi. I have a 2004 XL7 and the a/c was getting a little "less cold" so wanted to add refrigerant. The instructions say to attach the can to the low pressure connecter and that a pressure reading up to 45 psi is "full". The problem is, I get two different pressure readings depending on if the compressor is on or off. With the compressor on, it reads in the middle of the green or probably somewhere in the 35 to 40 psi range. With the compressor off, it jumps up into the yellow indicating "too much" pressure. Which reading is correct. Compressor on or off.

  • rosehroseh Member Posts: 1
    I purchased an XL-7 brand new. It is now 6 years old and I have never had a problem with it until the check engine light came on. I took it to Auto Zone and they gave a free diagnostics reading. I got 4 failures and it all seemed to focus around the 02 sensors. I brought it to the dealership but did not tell them that I had a diagnostics reading.The dealership said that all 4 sensors were gone and that it was possible that I would need a catalitic convertor but that he would not be able to tell until he got the sensors back in and ran the car so it would get hot. He charged me $960 for the 02 sensors and now is telling me that I have 4 converters and 2 of them aren't any good. He wants to charge me another $1500 for this to get done. Can someone help me out here and tell me if this is all true??? I am a single woman and feel like I am being taken to the cleaners. Help!!!!!! :sick:
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    How many miles are on your Suzuki?

    Check your owner's or car warranty manual - if you have less than 80,000 miles on the SUV, the catalytic converter may be covered under the federal emissions warranty.
  • blgoschblgosch Member Posts: 1
    We recently purchased a 2007 XL-7. From the day we brought it home, we noticed some type of donut sized fluid spots in the driveway wherever we parked. We took it back to the dealer and they said the seals in the transfer case were leaking and have to be replaced. We only have 1500 miles on the vehicle! :confuse: Has anyone else had this problem?
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    This is normal. The XL-7 is just warming up after a cold start. On warm days, it reduces RPM very quickly, and cold winter days, it can take a few minutes. It is important to let the powertrain warm up properly before taking off. I have a 2002 XL-7 with 58Kmiles on it. It still does it, and I wait for her.


    Ivan, kc5yti :)
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    I would assume with the compressor on, but read your instructions. It should say. Also, more than likely, you must perform this on a warm day with the AC maxed out.


    Ivan, kc5yti :)
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    It is important to let the powertrain warm up properly before taking off

    Lots of people think the best way to let the powertrain warm up is to hop in and gently drive it the first mile or two. Excessive idling can damage components like the catalytic converter. (link)
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    Well, after reading both the 2002 and 2007 manuals, it states nothing about allowing the engine to warm up, but it it does warn and caution about putting either vehicle into gear while the engine is not at idle. What is interesting is that the warning concerns the safety aspect, while the caution statement only concerns itself about damage that could be caused by placing the vehicle into gear while the engine is not at idle. I translate this as, it is recommended to allow the engine to warm up slightly before driving. I did not mean that one should let it site for 30 minutes to warm up. It is a waste of gas. With both of our rides, I allow the engines to reduce in RPMs as it warms up. Once it gets to a proper idle speed, roughly 900RPM, i place them into gear.


    Ivan, kc5yti :)
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    30 seconds of idling should be plenty. I figure my transmission, tires, wheel bearings, suspension, steering components, etc. only warm up when they are moving, so I get my cars in gear and ease out of the subdivision and don't idle any time at all. The ECU may be running the engine at a fast idle when it's cold, but I figure it's still at idle (since I'm not goosing the accelerator and then jamming it into gear).

    If you get ambitious maybe you could email Suzuki and ask them to clarify the manuals. ;)
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    I am not concerned, just merely relaying the information. I, personally, will continue to run my truck and the 2007 the same way. I have had my 2002 since she practically rolled off of the semi at the dealer, and so far, she has taken good care of me. I will continue to return the favor. As for the 2007, I will use the same plan. The way I see it is that most of the engine components do not get warm enough to cause any damage during the fast-idle warm up period. This period is very short during the spring and summer months, but could last as long as a few minutes during the cold winter months. I have seen no performance issues or problems caused by allowing the engine to return to normal idle. Just my opinion. :):):)


    Ivan, kc5yti
    2002 XL-7
    2007 XL7
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    3. Don’t Place Shift Lever in Drive or Reverse when engine is at "Fast Idle". This can cause abrupt transmission engagement leading to early failure of clutches, bands, gear sets, driveline components and engine or transmission mountings.

    Q. Can one place the shift lever in drive or reverse when the engine is in "fast idle"?

    A. This again like the previous question can cause abrupt transmission engagement leading to the early failure of clutches, bands, gear sets, driveline components and engine or transmission mountings.

    I can't find to much more, but they make sense. If you place it into gear while the vehicle is at fast-idle, would be like dropping the clutch on a manual transmission.

    I have also seen people saying not to wait for the engine to warm up. I think it depends on the vehicle. If you have a manual tranny, sure, you could get going right away. I have a 1990 Honda Accord, and I do that, but not with either XL-7 or any auto. tranny vehicle.

    Oh well, I am sure this could become a hot topic.


    Ivan,kc5yti :)
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Thanks for the links. I didn't have my manual handy so I looked at the '07 owner's manual for my minivan (seems like you can look at owner's manuals online for free for almost every car except Suzuki).

    Anyway, it says let the engine idle for 30 seconds after starting and don't race the engine. Drive at moderate speed for a short distance first. And use caution when shifting when cold since cold engine idle speed is high. I suspect the Suzuki one is similar.

    I'm guilty of rarely using my parking brake either btw. I did use it today while messing around in the garage and then wound up driving 2 miles before I realized it was on. :blush:
  • steven46steven46 Member Posts: 1
    Do these have them? I hate to seem ignorant of this but my Wife, who is the only one who drives it, say that the tailights and interior lights such as the shifter plate lights and ac control lights dont come on at night. I got in it today and the switch on the turn siganl was on the "off" position. Is it suppose to be there at all times? I turned it one notch and all the lights came on inside and out. but when you turn of the ignition it dings until you trun it back to the off position. What position should that be in for automatic headlights? If it even has it?
  • jojogjojog Member Posts: 1
    i took it to the dealership 3x already, they replace the elec motor selector, switch and re programed the controller but still the same problem. its been there for almost 3 weeks and i think they already run out of idea what to do. anyone who had the same problem? climate control selector switch not responding.
  • bosco729bosco729 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 Touring model XL7. Can anyone share with me what tire size options there are for this vehicle> I currently have 235/60/16 on the car. I'm looking to upgrade.
  • kbrown1999kbrown1999 Member Posts: 5
    Go to a Michelin dealer and ask them if they sell "Blue Streak" tires in that size. I put these tires on my wife's 02' and they have been great.They are a off brand of Michelin. I would NOT go with any other size, it will affect the handling. These tires only cost me $65 a piece. Any other brand is at least $110 a piece. This size of a tire is more of a performance tires so it is hard to find one with a more aggresive trend. If you have the factory Bridgestones- get rid of them. They wear too quick and are junk!
  • rjn2rjn2 Member Posts: 1
    Could someone Please help on ideas? My wife has a 2002 XL7 4x4. She said the 4x4 started not engaging, some times would sometimes not. Now it’s not engaging at all. I got underneath; put it in 4 wheel drive and the front drive shaft hooks up, turn the front drive shaft, the rear one turns and the back wheels roll but not the front.
  • carfun888carfun888 Member Posts: 25
    Make sure the tire pressures are the same for both sides of the same axle. For example both front tires at 26psi and both rear tires at 32 psi. It is very common in the cold weather for pressures to differ. The tire pressure must match on the SAME axle or else the tires rotate at different speeds. This cause your part-time 4wd to bind up and experience problems like you are having.

    Hope this helps.
  • clb333clb333 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 Suzuki XL7 4x4. A few weeks ago I had trouble getting it into reverse and almost everytime I go to put it in reverse it grinds, and the past couple of days it has had trouble starting. It is almost like something is spinning but not catching. Any ideas?
  • winchesteraimewinchesteraime Member Posts: 1
    I am new to this forum, I own a 02 XL-7, it has been working great. Today the service engine light came on, I just recently had an oil change so I am not sure why. Unfortunately, I purchased the car without the owner's manual. Please if someone could tell me some of the issues that could cause this light to go on, also where is it possible to get a new manual? I checked on the Suzuki website and I could only get a manual as far back as 03. Thank you for any help.
  • tonybouctonybouc Member Posts: 1
    I am having the same problem they say in the manual that it comes on when the emission control system needs servicing my mechanic could not find where to connect their computer to it not only that but their new computer did not even have suzuki listed so it looks like a dealer run to me
  • ucrcashucrcash Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2007 Suzuki XL-7 when ever its below 20 degrees my battery is dead and car will not start. The dealer tells me to replace the battery but only happens in cold weather.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    Car batteries don't charge well when they are cold. You can mitigate the problem by avoiding short trips. The battery needs extra time to recharge after supplying a large current to start the car.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • jquickjquick Member Posts: 3
    I have a 07 XL-7 the other day the accelerator stuck on the highway it didn't just stick it was like the cruise control took the pedal away and floored it. I had to stand on the brakes to get it to slow down just to get out of traffic of course not knowing I could have just turned it off. Itgot towed to the dealer and they are saying nothing is wrong with it. I have already had the battery problem with it about a month ago and the vehicle has less the 3,500 miles. I am afraid to drive it. Has anyone else had this problem?
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    Make sure to tighten your gas cap. Go by an Autozone or other auto parts store. They can't scan your computer for issues.


    kc5yti :)
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    watch your accessories and avoid short trips. I have had battery issues with both of my XL-7s. The 2002 and 2007. Both times, our fault. Our 2007 is the bus in the family. So it gets lots of short trips to and from school and day care. Well, we left the satellite radio on one night, and sure enough, dead battery come morning. Since then, no problems. I killed the 2002's battery twice by forgetting to shut off some radio equipment when I park it for a long period of time. Otherwise, both of our Suzukis are great.


  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    I am looking to try 225-70-16s on mine. It seems to be a popular size with many other owners. it give the truck a better look, and reportedly, a better ride. I have heard 235-70-16 as another choice, but without some suspension upgrades, the tires will rub some.


    Ivan, kc5yti
  • renee9renee9 Member Posts: 2
    I have a new 07 XL7. I experienced a stuck accelerator. I was pulling into my parking place and work very slowly and the thing took off, it seemed like someone floored the accelerator!!! To my horror, it went over the curb, knocked down the reserved parking sign and I finally got it to stop by putting both feet on the brake. I did damage to my bumper and underneath. My Husband thinks I'm crazy! Has anything like this happened to anyone else? If so, what did you do about it? I know it took off by itself!
  • jquickjquick Member Posts: 3
    I had mine towed to the dealer and they said nothing was wrong and suzuki said this hadn't happened to anyone else!!!!!! Mine also just took off and the accelerator was floored. I don't know what to do when everyone is saying theres nothing wrong. I know there is something wrong and I am afraid to drive it!
  • renee9renee9 Member Posts: 2
    I had asked the dealer about it. They told me to bring it in and they will test drive it. Well, I am 99% sure that it would not accelerate when they test drive it! You can't make it do that.
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    Are either of you, cruise control users. I have only seen something like this, once, with ours. It was driving into town from the highway, and I had accidentally bumped the resume button for cruise control, which at set a 70mph. So, of course the vehicle started to accellerate until I realized that I had kicked the cruise back on. Otherwise, I have never seen this on our 2007. We have about 11K miles on it.


    Ivan, kc5yti
  • jquickjquick Member Posts: 3
    I have never used my cruise control and none the less when you hit the brake the cruise control stops.The vehicle doesn't stop accelerating even when you are standing on the brake.
  • kc5ytikc5yti Member Posts: 38
    Wow, never had that happen. I can't remember if the throttle is cable or by wire on the XL-7. I wonder if it could be the linkage binding or maybe till, the cruise actuator kicking in when it should not. I hope you are able to determine the issue. We own two XL-7s, a 2002 and 2007. We have been very happen with both.


    Ivan, :)
  • staabstaab Member Posts: 1
    this winter my 02 suzuki XL7 started to be able to go in reverse only. this happened twice. then went away for a few days. I have the problem coming back. have anyone one else expereanced this same situation? the mileage is around 36k. and the O/D button will not work :confuse:
  • ceuserceuser Member Posts: 6
    I bought a brand new 2007 xl7 in September 07. I have put nearly 8,000 miles on the vehicle . The check engine light came on one morning and I immediately took the vehicle to the dealer.Ok,,,The dealer called yesterday and they will have my brand new 2007 xl7 for at least a week. The codes coming up for the check engine light indicated that a misfire was occurring because the camshaft is defective.
    The camshaft ,,,along with the rocker arms have to be changed...????
    This is completely blowing my mind.
    Has this happened to anyone else? The dealer service guy said that this has happened to a few other 2007 xl 7s.,,but after the repair,,everything should be fine. I believe this is a huge job for a brand new vehicle. Engine work??????
    Can anyone shed any light on this for me...??
    Thanks for letting me share.
  • slinky1slinky1 Member Posts: 42
    Interesting for sure!!! , i also have a 2007 xl7, i also bought in september and have about the same milage. no probs for me.
    I work at Cami automotive, the company that makes these for suzuki, in Ingersoll ontario, i have heard of no particular probs with the camshaft, or misfires, but i will take a trip up to our quality department for you and see if they know anything i don't!!
  • ceuserceuser Member Posts: 6
    The xl7 is still in the shop,,,, waiting for parts and whatnot. The dealer service guy keeps telling me not too worry that the vehicle will be ready soon.

    I have heard thru the grapevine that this has happened to a few other xl7s because of the manner in which it is shipped thru Canada. The interior of the engine is not covered and rust has been forming on the whatchamacallits. This sounds crazy but I hope they can fix this or else I want my money back. Its been 8 days in the shop already. I have to start looking up lemon lawyers.
    At this rate ,,,I will be in line for a refund or a new vehicle,,,I ll take the money.
    I thought I had a good deal,,,but.............we shall see.
  • oswald008oswald008 Member Posts: 6
    There is one 2007 XL7 at Payne Suzuki Brownsville ,Texas, approx 1000 miles, dealer told me it's a 'rocker arm issue'. They pulled the engine last week and it's still there as of today on service rack with engine pulled.

    I bought a new 2007 XL7 Limited AWD in Dec 2007 here is my list of issues:
    Jan 3rd 2008 heater will not work while in Aspen Colorado.
    Jan 5th 2008 DVD/Radio/CD will not work in San Antonio, Texas. Rear defroster 1/2 broken. (dealer replaced rear window completely)
    Feb 11th 2008 Engine shut off completely while driving!!!! rough idle heard and felt through out car, dealer check all OK. Two roof rack bindings will not stay down, dealer fixed per tech bulletin. Now all four will not stay down. Dealer order new roof rack rails with attached bindings. Climate control face plate/bezel will not stay in assembled location, pops out, Dealer replaced bezel.
    Mar 11th 2008 1st oil change. dealer suggestes replacing all wipers, under warranty.
    Mar 14th 2008 tighten fuel cap warning.
    Mar 16th rough idle and hesitations while accelerating from stop.
    Mar 17th check engine light (7865 miles) and tighted fuel cap warning, again, but I never touched it since tighten it last time and the light went away. Dealer witnesses lights and mentions that the tach was not moving between shifting from M/D/N/R/P. Rough idle witnessed by dealer, finally.
    Mar 18th in dealer service shop this morning - I'm completely frustrated and do not want this lemon anymore. I had a new 2006 Grand Vitara 4X4 never one issue that's why I bought the XL7.
  • ceuserceuser Member Posts: 6
    My xl7 is still in the shop. First it was parts then they are still waiting on a few seals?????? This sounds pretty serious. Well,,Maybe it is a lemon!!!!!!
    The dealer told me it was a misfire caused by a defective camshaft.
    They were going to put a new camshaft and rocker arms but someone told me that there are no rocker arms because it is variable valve timing or something.
    Its funny you mentioned the climate control face plate not staying in position. Mine is doing the same thing,,,,I keep pusjing it back on but that is not my problem right now. I am waiting ....
    cHECK ENGINE LIGHT came on at around the same mileage as yours. Weird...
  • oswald008oswald008 Member Posts: 6
    The 'check engine' according to the dealer was the tighten fuel cap warning because it's a pressurized fuel system, so they reset the light and ordered a new fuel cap per Suzuki, swho stated there is a check valve in the fuel cap which can get dirty and cause this issue. Sad to say, but I think I'm in for more monkey business with this one, only time will tell. I just don't like hearing 'maybe you had some bad fuel' that's why it shut off. I've learned a valuable lesson, document everything and report it to the dealer to develop a case history per the 'lemon law' . That face plate was more irritating than anything, $25K new vehicle and the face plate won't stay put, I don't think so...wish I'd kept my 06 Grand Vitara.

    Regardless of the dealer's cover story your defective camshaft should have never made it to market, there is more to that story. The same with the auto accelerating XL7's posted here , that alone is enough for me to dump this vehicle very soon.
Sign In or Register to comment.