The Kia Sorento is an SUV that not only has a muscular form factor, it also has a good reputation for reliability. However, in this article, we will go over the reputation of this model when it comes to reliability. We will also tell you the common faults of the Kia Sarento throughout its eighteen years of history.
Kias are not known for having excellent resale value. The value of the Kia Sorento typically depreciates by 55% after five years. This is more than other cars, which only depreciate around 40% to 45% after five years.
How good is the Kia Sorento?
The Kia Sorento has earned high marks for reliability. This SUV has had a rating of four out of five, which is above average. In general, the problems that the Kia Sorento can have are less serious and not so frequent compared to the average car.
On the other hand, other sources give a reliability score of three out of five, which is average. If you want a reliable vehicle, the Kia Sorento’s average score might not impress you. Also, the 2020 Sorento model should be avoided because it got a low rating of one out of five.
Regardless of the Sorento’s ratings on certain websites, one thing is certain. Kia has taken a step forward as a manufacturer compared to the 1990s. Kia cars in the 1990s had a reputation for cheapness and poor quality .
Kia may not yet have the same reputation for reliability as brands like Toyota, but the truth is that Kia has come a long way. Currently, the South Korean manufacturer gives its customers a lot of confidence because they guarantee the reliability of their cars with one of the best guarantees for new cars in the sector.
Common failures of the Kia Sorento
Kia may have a great warranty on its newer vehicles, but its older models had some issues. They aren’t completely bad, but they will have a higher tendency to fail and cause problems compared to newer ones. These problems will tend to vary each model year, some of these common Kia Sarento failures are:
1- Engine failures
A common problem with the 2016 Kia Sorento is a tendency for its engine to misfire. This happens as a result of the head gasket leaking, causing your antifreeze and coolant to mix with the engine oil. These two liquids should never be mixed because they serve very different purposes . Unfortunately, owners only experience symptoms when it is too late.
When they see that the exhaust pipe is smoking, the engine is already badly damaged. Regularly checking the head gasket for signs of wear can prevent this. Head gasket replacement can cost anywhere from $20 to $60.
2- Problems with the ignition coil
Owners report that a common part that needs to be replaced on the Sorento is its ignition coil. Faulty ignition coils cause engine misfiring which can lead to engine damage if ignored.
It’s a good thing that most owners report their ignition coils having failed by the time the car has reached over a hundred thousand miles or more, which isn’t alarming since ignition coils are only designed to last around a hundred thousand miles. .
Replacing the ignition coils is easy as they are easily accessible. You can get replacement ignition coils for around $20 to $140.
3- Bad crankshaft pulley bolt
Crankshaft pulley bolt failures are common on the first generation Sorento, which ran from 2003 to 2006. Power from the crankshaft is sent to other systems through the pulleys.
When the crankshaft pulley bolt fails, it will disable systems like power steering and air conditioning. If this breaks down on the highway and the power steering fails, it can be a safety risk. It can also disable your Sorento’s alternator, causing electrical problems and preventing the Sorento’s battery from recharging.
Sometimes a bad crankshaft pulley bolt can also damage other engine components like the crankshaft position sensor . The tendency for the bolt to fail appears to have something to do with the design of the crankshaft pulley bolt, as owners report that it can still occur even after multiple repairs.
4- Defective doors
The most reported problem with the 2011 Kia Sorento is that its doors do not open when opened from the outside. This is certainly very annoying for drivers because this can prevent drivers from getting into their vehicle.
Owners who make use of the child lock feature are even more infuriated because once the exterior door handles fail, there is no way they can open the passenger doors. Many of the owners who have had this problem have gone to their dealerships to have the issue fixed, but it has not been recalled or covered under warranty.
Replacing the door handles on the SUV seems to fix the problem. Replacement exterior door handles cost around $15 – $90.
5- Headlight bulbs burn out
Kia Sorento headlight bulbs also tend to burn out prematurely. This problem seems to be the most prominent in the 2002 to 2009 Sorento, with dozens of people reporting their light bulbs burn out after only a few months .
Owners also find that other components in their headlight besides the bulb burn out as well. While the cause of this issue has to do with the way Kia vehicles send power to their headlights, Kia has not issued any type of recall. You can get Kia Sorento replacement headlights for anywhere from $100 to $600, although used will be cheaper.
6- Noise or vibration of the air conditioning compressor
Another common problem on the 2002 to 2009 Kia Sorento is a tendency for the air conditioning compressor to fail. A faulty A/C compressor makes a noise that sounds like a rumbling or high-pitched wail.
This is caused by the A/C compressor clutch failing. Since your air conditioner can’t engage its clutch, the pulley system can’t turn the compressor. As a result, the air conditioner will stop producing cold air.
One solution to this problem is to replace the faulty air compressor . Kia Sorento air conditioning compressors can cost between $250 and $400.
7- Noisy start due to a faulty timing chain
The Kia Sorento can create excessive noise during start-ups, best described as a rattling sound. If the oil levels in the engine are normal, then the noise is probably coming from a faulty timing chain tensioner.
The engine may stop running as soon as the timing chain fails . The failing timing chain can also damage other components such as pulleys once it fails. Replacing the faulty timing chain tensioner with an updated version seems to fix the problem.
If you are thinking of buying a second-hand Kia Sorento, it is important to know the most common failures of the Kia Sarento based on the experience of other drivers. Knowing these problems can help you watch out for them so you can avoid costly repairs in the future.