Hyundai Santa Fe Brake Problems

mineownmineown Member Posts: 4
edited September 2014 in Hyundai
I have a 07 SantaFe AWD 7-passenger version.
The engine is 3.3L, I noticed a problem that almost happens every time after I start up the car and try to accellerate very slowly through 30KMs.

As soon as it hits 30KM in speed, I can feel a very small feedback from the gas pedal, I can also hear the 'click-click' sound when it happens. It feels like something is trying to be hooked up at that time. The weird thing is, this only happens only the first time I accellerate through 30KMs after I start up the car. After that, as long as the car is still running, even if I reduce the speed to 0 and try hit on gas to go beyond 30KMs (very slowly) again, it doesn't happen. So it happens only the first time I start up the car.

I took it to a hyundai service but the mechanic couldn't feel anything during a test drive. But the problem still happens almost on a daily basis, esp. for a cold start (parked overnight).

Anyone has any suggestions?


  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    Sounds like the normal ABS self test. Most ABS equipped cars run a test when first driven that often sounds like a clunk clunk that you hear and sometimes feel (my van's brake pedal shudders during the inital start). I think it's caused by the ABS pump activation. Your mechanic should have been able to diagnosis that over the phone.

    Now, if your make/model doesn't have ABS, then I don't know what to think.
  • mineownmineown Member Posts: 4
    Thanks for your reply.
    The feedback (clunk, clunk) is very similar to what you'd feel from the brake pedal when ABS kicks in on a slippery road.

    And Yes my model does have ABS, I am pretty sure.
  • wolf62wolf62 Member Posts: 5
    Had the same problem with my 2007.Took it to the dealership where it was identified as the ABS pump self test at 30kph. One of four "problems" I had with my 2007 (other three:crack in console,tear in leather seat and pebble behind front brake disc). :mad:
  • mineownmineown Member Posts: 4
    Oh, that was a bit relieving.
    Is this a problem or simply the way it works?
  • wolf62wolf62 Member Posts: 5
    Simply the way it works.The dealership claims they checked two other new 2007's on the lot and they had the same noise (I originally described it as a clunk at 30kph,which I originally thought was a driveline noise).I think this issue has been discussed in earlier forums, if you want to do a search.
  • mineownmineown Member Posts: 4
    Thanks, did a search by ABS test and turned out quite a few posts on the same topic.
    Now I am feeling a bit better that I didn't buy a lemon.
  • mmcmilanmmcmilan Member Posts: 3
    I have Hyundai SF SE 3.3 automatic transmission. Brand new. It seems to me that parking break is too weak. Whenever hill is more then 35 deg. and you don't use park on your transmission (let's say you leave it on N) and use just parking break it is so weak that it will not hold car. I had small car before and park break was able to keep car stopped even on 45 deg or more with no problem. Is my parking break broke? What are yours experiences?
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    I had small car before and park [brake] was able to keep car stopped even on 45 deg or more with no problem

    I'm curious. Where would that be? 45° is quite extreme. The brake would have to support about 70% of the car's weight with that grade.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • slateblueslateblue Member Posts: 110
    Well, why would anyone want to park their car on a hill or anyplace else with the transmission in neutral and the key in the ignition with just the parking brake applied? With a/t you can't remove the key without gear shift being in park. It's an unsafe situation even with the parking brake applied and holding the car. Rather than theorize have the dealer inspect it for problems.
  • fkozloffkozlof Member Posts: 1
    Yes, we too have SF Limited with 3.3 and a Weak Parking Brake.
    We've TWICE asked the dealer to 'tighten it up' still rolls on even a gentle hill, until the Parking Pawl engages..but under heavy load, or steep slope, that is Not healthy for the transmission 'pin' that locks it in Park. In our use, we have a boat, and on the launch ramp, I assure you, you MUST use the parking brake to launch & retrieve. This brake, even when I step will all my weight to depress the pedal, it holds, but needs the assist of the parking pawl. This brake will not hold the vehicle from rolling on a gentle slope driveway. This is not my first car, all other vehicles would lock the tires and you'd drag them and flatspot them if you were silly enough to point being, a parking brake should be THAT strong, to not allow any tire rotation. Anybody else have SUCCESS with the dealer on this issue????
  • rick2456rick2456 Member Posts: 320
    I agree about the parking brake. I have noticed however the brake tends to work when facing downhill, but not to well when facing uphill (rolling backwards). I do wish this vehicle had a parking hand brake in the middle console (like my 2007 Sonata) as I hate the foot brake concept.
  • carowner6carowner6 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 Santa Fe. I have had problems recently with the brake pedal. It usually happens when it is cold and on initial startup. The brake pedal only presses down slightly, therefore only working slightly, and can take MANY attempts to press down normally. I have had the brakes inspected and said to be fine. Tried flushing brakes and replacing fluid but problem reoccured again 2 weeks later. Has anyone else had this problem? Please advise.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    You said you had the brakes inspected. Did they inspect the brake pedal? It sounds like the problem may be there.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • cherrmancherrman Member Posts: 8
    I have a 2007 santa fe, with 27300 miles. The left rear caliper is sticking to the disc brakes. I called the dealer and it sounds like I will be stuck with the bill. Can anyone help me out before Friday 4/17/09?
  • cherrmancherrman Member Posts: 8
    I have a 2007 santa fe with 27300 miles. The rear brakes started squealing. I think the left rear caliper is sticking to the disc brake. The dealer doesn't seem to know about this problem. Brake pads are not a warranty item. Is the caliper covered? I have an appointment 0417/2009 with the dealer for them to look at it. I have found many post on other website stating this is a problem with the santa fe. I called Hyundai USA and they don't see it as a safety issue, so it probably will not be covered under warranty. Can anyone help me?
  • ineedajobineedajob Member Posts: 12
    27K is very low for rear brake replacement, in fact a good rule of thumb in most cars you will go through two set of front pads to every set or rear. If it’s just the left rear that needs to be replaced, it’s obviously a sticking caliper most likely as the pressure is split between the front and the rear and the left and the right so one should not have (sizable) more wear then the other. 27K would be in the normal range for the fronts. On the same note, brake jobs are relatively inexpensive to do and definitely in the do it yourself category. If you have a friend that can do it, you may be able to that route. Do NOT just do the one side, also do it in pairs Front (L&R), Rear (L&R). By the way, if it was indeed sticking, you should have noticed some strange smells from that rear caliper. The one brake job I did on a SantaFe was at about 28K (fronts) was very easy to do.
  • ineedajobineedajob Member Posts: 12
    You either have a bad Master Cylinder, Power brake unit or a vacuum leak. The Master Cylinder is what transforms your foot pressure to the brakes on your car. A car without a power brake unit would (appear) like the brakes are weak, when in reality you just have to press hard. The Power brake unit increases your foot pressure so you don’t have to push so hard for the brakes to engage. A good test would be this.
    Find a safe place to do this with a SLIGHT incline. Park your SantaFe and turn the engine off. Place the car in Neutral and take off the parking brake (the car should start to roll down the incline). Press the brake (it should feel normal, very little pressure like when you normally drive). Press the break maybe 10 more times and you will use up all the left over vacuum in the lines. Now, it’s VERY hard to stop. Does it feel the same as when you start the car (I would guess yes). If so, you know you have either a vacuum leak or power booster leak. Go ahead and start your car again and you’ll feel the brakes are easy to push again. You can put a vacuum gauge on the power booster and watch it over night (if possible) and see if it goes down (it will somewhat). I would guess you most likely have a bad power brake booster. Flushing will have no effect on this, nor replacing pads. It’s further up the line. Good Luck
  • cherrmancherrman Member Posts: 8
    I have looked at the brakes front and back and there is plenty of pad. I can't see the inside pad because of the dirt shield around the rotor. I'm trying to find if any other santa fe owners have had this trouble. I just don't want to be taken by some dumb excuse the dealer is going to tell me.
  • lemarkllemarkl Member Posts: 1

    I had the same problem with the rear brakes at only 14K miles. They started squealing Easter week and I didn't have a chance to get them looked at til after the weekend. By that time the rear left brake had eaten into my rotor so much that I needed it replaced. I am going to call my Hyundai dealer and let them know this is BS. If you have talked to them already let me know some feedback on how it went. Good luck to the both of us with this fight.
  • cherrmancherrman Member Posts: 8
    I had to take a ride with the service guy, but he heard the noise. The rotor also smelled HOT so he looked at that side only. He told me it would all be replaced under Hyundai warrenty. You can do a google search under 2007 hyundai santa fe brake problems. There are lots of complaints. Try
    I hope I helped you.
  • mikebutkusmikebutkus Member Posts: 18
    My '07 with 29K and I checked both rear pads, both had plenty above the notch in the pads. Maybe the early models had problems? They have an aluminum plate that the pads ride in. So they shouldn't "stick". Most likely it was the piston not returning when pressed.
  • stovebolterstovebolter Member Posts: 53
    My wife's 2007 Santa Fe SE AWD has the same problem - the left (driver side) rear brake caliper has been tearing into the rotor. She started hearing the noise of the caliper rubbing at about 13-14k, we brought it in, the dealer said everything was fine. Now at 18k the damage is visible. No word yet on whether this will be a warranty issue, but I'm going to insist on it. I'll try and remember to post the results.
  • cherrmancherrman Member Posts: 8
    The problem is the caliper is not releasing from the rotor. It might help you to point out the blue color of the rotor, Due to excessive heat. The dealer I took it to told me all was good. I had to take him for a ride and then he tried to blame the nosie on something else. After the cailper drags for a while the rotor will have a burnt smell , point that out. Point out how much hotter that wheel is compared to the other wheels. The dealer did replace the whole cailper rotor and pads, on that side only. :)
  • stovebolterstovebolter Member Posts: 53
    Thanks for the reply.

    At this point, I don't think there's any question to what the problem is - looking at the rotor, you can see it's been worn quite badly, particularly in comparison to the others.

    Did the dealer/warranty cover the cost for you? Or am I looking at a big bill?

    I'm rather upset that when the car was in 6 months ago they told me that nothing was wrong, particularly if it means I have to pay for a rotor (or two), when the rotor would have been fine if they had corrected the caliper issue.
  • stovebolterstovebolter Member Posts: 53
    Update to my situation:

    The dealer replaced the pads on both sides of the rear, machined the rotors, and "corrected" the calipers to prevent seizing. All were covered under warranty.

    I have to admit, I was muttering some bad things about Hyundai last night, but after how quickly they responded without giving us any trouble (other than the inconvenience of being without a car for a day), I have to take it back and compliment them on a job well done.

    I hope anyone else with this same issue gets the same treatment we did, I'm quite satisfied with both Hyundai and my dealer.
  • somedai1somedai1 Member Posts: 416
    machined the rear rotors? that would be a mistake.
  • stovebolterstovebolter Member Posts: 53
    Why would that be a mistake? Provided the rotors are within service limits, of course.
  • digitalfreakdigitalfreak Member Posts: 8
    Glad I found this thread! My wife has a 2007 Santa Fe GLS AWD with 16k miles. I smelled a burning smell when she pulled into the garage one day. Pinpointed it as coming from the rear driver's side wheel, but it went away soon after. She's now started complaining about it squealing when she's driving (after letting off the break & moving forward). Was just getting ready to take it into the dealer when I saw this thread. Hopefully it will give me some leverage to get the parts replaced under warranty.
  • mrnyjetmrnyjet Member Posts: 2
    my 07 santa fe started around 18k with the screetching noise. the dealer says the factory requires a caliper service as part of the 15k service. they charged $80 for the caliper service and the noise is gone. stated that they removed accumulated rust and clean and re-lube the cailper parts and hardware/shields.

    never had this problem with other hyundais i owned , either elantras or sonatas. :blush:
  • richpacrichpac Member Posts: 2
    Just started with the 07 Santa Fe screeching about 5 days ago and already, the rotor has been cut into on the rear driver's side wheel. I will update you with the outcome. I had my car state inspected in January at the same dealer and, prior to that, my car was fine. Now at 42k mi. I already have a brand new transmission and will see what they do about the brake problem. I loved my 03 Santa Fe and never had a single problem with it.
  • richpacrichpac Member Posts: 2
    Initially, the service dept. at the dealership thought it was the emergency brake hanging up but upon doing the $89 brake service and test driving the car, the squealing continued and they brought it back into the shop. The left rear rotor was 350+ degrees as compared to 150 degrees for the right. So they ordered the caliper and was told that there is a problem with the left rear brake calipers and to send the part back to Hyundai. All was covered by warranty. I am going to contact Hyundai with a complaint about the vehicle. My service dept. is top notch though, and it will be noted as such.
  • lowe165lowe165 Member Posts: 1
    While returning from vacation with my family today i noticed a high pitch shrill coming from the right rear tire. I pulled over and up inspection noticed it was extremenrely hot. It's Sunday "Fathers Day" and nothing is open. I dropped the family to a hotel and i took the Sante Fe to a dealer. Hopefully they will get it done first thing in the morning so we can drive three hours home tomorrow.
  • goodwrench2007goodwrench2007 Member Posts: 2
    Same problem, different day. I have a 2007 Santa Fe AWD with just 11,700 miles. The right rear wheel becomes extremely HOT, and, of course, you can smell the burning odor in the air. I will take it to the dealer this next week, and see, what we will see? If it is not covered by the warrantee-I will be extremely HOT. I know there is a TSB (08-BR-002) posted on the website, however, this problem is referred to as a”squeaking noise” from the rear wheels. I think, this may be one and the same problem. Now, whether the dealer will think so, I’ll find out next week.
  • goodwrench2007goodwrench2007 Member Posts: 2
    As predicted, the dealership performed the TSB 08-BR-002 that is described on the website, to resolve the over heating problem. The brake pads were stuck against the rotor do to corrosion on the caliper & pads- these, as I was told, were cleaned, greased, and ALL parts reused. They would NOT cover it under the warrantee. At just 11,700 miles and 18 months of ownership, there is NO way I should be stuck with this $79.48 bill. I filed a complaint, with the dealership, Hyundai of America and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The dealership just simply said that unless it is a RECALL item, Hyundai, and apparently the dealership, will NOT cover the expense. Although, it was below the 12,000 mile limit on the warrantee, I was over the 12 month limit by 6 months. So, I guess, until there is some serious accident because of this problem, or enough people complain, there will be NO RECALL! So, ALL Santa Fe owners keep an eye and nose on guard for this potential problem!!!
  • stovebolterstovebolter Member Posts: 53
    I'm sorry to hear you have had such bad luck with your dealer. I wish you good luck in getting a reasonable outcome from Hyundai. Having this problem as often as it's been reported here and so early in the vehicle's life implies that this is clearly a design flaw and a safety issue. Hyundai should own up to it, as they did with myself and a few others here.

    Again, good luck.
  • somedai1somedai1 Member Posts: 416
    i think the materials they use for their rotors are prone to excessive rust - once aftermarket rotors come out we all need to swap out... I have cross driiled rotors on the rear but i can tell all the company i ordered them from did was drill some oem rotors cause the silver finish did not last long at all -due to rust...
  • hhayden2003hhayden2003 Member Posts: 1
    I went to the dealership in July '08 at 14,000 miles with a problem at the left rear brake. They checked the brakes and since one pad was worn they replaced both sets. This week I had to take the truck back in with the same problem. I was informed by a new service manager that this was due to the fact that I don't have my vehicle serviced at the dealership and that was the problem. I eventually called the owner when I couldn't get satisfaction from the service manager and he said that brakes were not covered under the warranty and I tried to explain to him that the truck had the same problem the year before and that I wanted to know what could be causing the brake pad to wear out on only ONE side of the tire. I got no satisfaction. Does anyone know if the caliper is the cause and if Hyundai will replace it?
  • zaninizanini Member Posts: 1
    Just after 15 k miles my brakes were noisy so I took the car in and they said the manual called for a service job that cost $100 which more that just about everyone posting here has paid! Now at 29k miles there was grinding and the left rear brakes were worn out and there was metal to metal contact! They had to turn the rotor and replaced both rear (right & left) brake pads and serviced the front brakes. The dealer said the car was out of warranty and I called Hyundai but the said the same thing. Hyundai would not deal and refused to prorate the brakes. When 60-70% of the braking is done by the front brakes and usually in normal cars rear brakes last at least 1.5 times what the front brakes last and after seeing so many postings with this same problem to me it sounds like Hyundai has a rear bake sticking problem and they are trying to fool everyone one of us!
  • jaco0062jaco0062 Member Posts: 8
    K. I work at a Hyundai dealership in Canada. To all the people with rear brake problems...they require a rear brake service 1nce a year as the brackets that hold the pads rust and seize the pads in place. This is not a big deal if u follow the recommended service outlined in your owners manual. It is recommended by many vehicle manufacturers to do this service 1nce a year. :)
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    The Edmunds Maintenance Guide says to inspect the rear brakes every 30,000 miles.

    Maybe the owner's manual is different up there (the Guide get the maintenance from the manual).
  • chuck114chuck114 Member Posts: 2
    K, I live in Canada and I have a 2008 Santa-Fe. I did all the maintenance steps, 1,2,3,1,2, etc... Last month I spent over $600 to have my rotors replaced as there was a rusting problem with the calipers. My car went through one winter and was only slightly older than one year with a little over 30,000 kilometers. Apparently it is because of the salt and all brands of cars have this problem. Interesting, I owned Nissan and Mazda and never had such a problem, it is the reason I buy new cars, pay the maintenance and avoid the surprise costs. I think Hyundai has a design or a material defect and are not taking responsibility. In the long run they will loose. It is already starting, my daughter likes the Elantra but is thinking twice about going ahead.
  • ayeuayeu Member Posts: 41
    Interesting... I have an '07 Sonata and posted similar brake problems on the Sonata thread. Many similar comments. The recommended brake service mentioned costs $130 (USD) at my dealer. That means >$10/month just to keep brakes working? That's crazy. My dealer performed this service and ground more clearance into the pad slides and put a heat resistant lube on it. The brakes work but are very noisy as you can hear the pads move. The service dept said I should be glad the parts are moving.
    I like the Sonata and had been considering a Santa Fe until reading this thread. I doubt I'll buy another Hyundai mostly because the manufacturer won't own up to (and therefore take steps to solve) their problem which, by the way, is prevalent in Kias, too.
  • weaver6weaver6 Member Posts: 1
    having the same problem with mr 07. My husband is doing the work himself , but is having trouble getting the rotor off. any help ? Thanks
  • sdb1sdb1 Member Posts: 1
    SDB1 for K. My left rear caliper seized on a trip to Virginia. Had to replace rear pads and have rotors ground while there. I have driven 10000k since and now seized again. No salt yet on roads. Why a repeat now?

  • bobclarbobclar Member Posts: 8
    My 2007 SantaFe had a sqealing brake issue also. The dealer wanted me to spend $150.00 to have it serviced (30,000 miles). I took it to a local service station and he "oiled" the springs that control the calipers and all is fine. He said it is common in a salt/snow area like upstate New York. 5000 miles later and still no more problem.

  • donazeradonazera Member Posts: 3
    I did not find any posts about 2007 Azera rear brake problems, but see here that the Sante Fe and Sonata have had similar problems. I did not notice any noise or braking problems. Recently took my car to Goodyear for an oil change. They checked the brakes and told me the rear brake pads needed replacing and the rotors turned. They were surprised as the front brakes were in good condition. I took the car to the dealership thinking this was a problem covered under warranty. Of course not, it was considered maintenance. Dealer comments: rear brake pads worn uneven, pads tilt. Machined rear brake rotors. I am getting ready to complain to Hyundai corporate that this should be covered under warranty, but I did not take the car in for its 15,000 maintenance, that would have included inspecting the brakes. Even so, only 5,000 miles ago, I am sure they would have said the same thing, new rear brakes needed, and not covered as they consider it maintenance. Did any of you take your vehicle in for regular maintenance and still encounter this problem of premature rear brake wear?
  • chuck114chuck114 Member Posts: 2
    Yes, I followed thier maintenance plan and only went through one winter. Based on my conversation with the garage, it is a common problem.
  • somedai1somedai1 Member Posts: 416
    my rear brakes seemed to need replacement early too - i would suggest not going back to the original rotors - the pads are supposed to be good though - akebono... but having them wear so quickly i wouldn't replace with the same - it will just happen again
  • LS37LS37 Member Posts: 6
    State Safety Inspection required that all four rotors on my 2007 Hyundai Santa Fe be replaced at 63000 miles because they did not meet minimum thickness requirements. These rotors were not scored. Dealer described this as "normal" wear not the result of a problem. I have never had to replace all four rotors under 100,000 miles before. And just for good measure the sway bar had to be replaced.
  • somedai1somedai1 Member Posts: 416
    you are lucky - i think brakes didn't last that long on most 07 Santa Fe's on this forum - or maybe they were just referring to pads - the pads on this vehicle are very good - the rotors however are suspect - I don't know who makes them - but I got rid of them on my 1st brake job to get better performance at 42k miles! they rust too quickly and as with what happened in your case I don't think they last too long... as long as you don't go to the dealer - you probably have better rotors now. Are you sure it wasn't the sway bar link? Looks like these things go early on this vehicle too...
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