really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
36,120 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2004 Hyundai Santa Fe engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Owner Comments

problem #14

Apr 132011

Santa Fe

  • 20,000 miles


Dies in the middle if road! almost die. All the time!!!!!! dies in the middle if road! all the time!!!almost died.

- Pace, FL, USA

problem #13

Apr 072012

Santa Fe 4-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
Vehicle shuts off while driving. While driving it will stall and then take off.

- Windsor Mill, MD, USA

problem #12

Nov 012011

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • miles
My air bags light is always on and will not turn off. The suspension is horrible, I took it to a mechanic and he said" there was nothing he could do. And sometimes when I turn my vehicle on the engine revels up and sounds as if the acceleration is stuck. Scares me to death.

- Hubert, NC, USA

problem #11

Dec 012011

Santa Fe

  • 126,000 miles


So many things going wrong back seat belts don't work, washer pump don't work tried to order part from dealer do not have any in us the camshaft sensor pigtail disintegrated from being to close to the engine and no one sells the part have to buy the complete engine wiring kit for one little plastic piece there should be a recall on this I read online that everyone with this car had the same problems.

- Pgh, PA, USA

problem #10

Apr 012011

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
The driver's side coil spring broke on my 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe at 40,000 miles. I was driving down a street and there was a loud explosion type sound, my vehicle actually felt like it jumped, all the dash lights came on and the engine died. I wrestled with the wheel to get the car over to the side of the road but I was still in the road. There was a woman in front of me getting out of her car with a toddler and I came close to hitting them as I tried to control my truck. I'm so glad I wasn't going faster than 10-15 mph. The repair agent said he'd never seen this happen at less than 100K+ miles, and it took out the brake line and fuel line on that side as well. Total cost will be $1500. As the timing belt also needs changing. Not happy. I see many other complaints of this situation (coil spring going on Hyundai Santa Fe at low mileage), but I don't see any kind of reparation offered by the company or any recall. There should be - this is not acceptable. I'm not likely to buy a Hyundai again.

- Old Orchard Beach, ME, USA

problem #9

Feb 072011

Santa Fe

  • 66,000 miles
I tried to start my 2004 Santa Fe but the engine would not turn over (it cranked fine so we knew it was not the battery). While it was being dragged onto the tow truck the driver's side front tire deflated. The wheel did not turn while being dragged up the truck ramp. The repair shop said that the front spring had snapped and triggered a kill switch to the fuel line which prevented the car from starting. I never heard any awful sounds while driving so the the front driver's side coil spring must have snapped while parked in the driveway. The spring needs to be replaced, as does the tire.

- Cherry Hill, NJ, USA

problem #8

Mar 062008

Santa Fe

  • miles


The contact owns a 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact stated that this was the forth time they had to replace the oxygen sensor. The check engine light came on when the failure occurred and the vehicle overheated. During the last failure, the main circuit board on the vehicle burned and was replaced three times in the past two years. The failure mileage was not known, but the current mileage was 135000.

- Glenndale, AZ, USA

problem #7

Jul 022010

Santa Fe

  • 21,900 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact stated while driving at approximately 20 mph in heavy traffic, there was an abnormal increase in engine rpms and the vehicle stalled. In addition, the temperature gauge would fluctuate up and down as the failure occurred. The dealer was unable to duplicate the failure. The vehicle was left with the dealer where the contact was awaiting further diagnostic of the failure. The failure mileage was 21,900 and the current mileage was 22,000.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #6

Oct 022008

Santa Fe

  • 73,010 miles
Was driving on the freeway doing freeway speeds at 5:30 am going to work when my truck just shut down. Check engine light came on, I lost all power coasted about 300 feet, pulled off on left and engine died and would not restart. Come to find out, timing belt went bad, also had to replace the crank position sensor. I've got less than 75000 miles on this truck and am very upset that this is not covered on the warranty and that the parts they use to put these trucks together are so cheap!

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #5

Mar 262006

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,500 miles
Allstate found that there was 1) water pump failure 2) some form of drive belt failure, and 3) the interference engine had parts collide within the engine leading to a fire. This occurred as my pregnant wife was driving down the road. Hyundai is currently negotiating with me to reimburse me for the total loss. Of course, they are not offering me what I lost on the investment at this point. The dealership was found to not be liable by the BBB; therefore I am communicating directly with representatives at Hyundai motor co. I am very concerned about the safety of this vehicle, and I am curious about whether we are the only family that this has happened to. I can provide you with the 12 page insurance company report; I lack any knowledge of engines and how they work, but it appears to me that this is an extreme danger to consumers. I believe this should be investigated further. Since Hyundai is willing to settle with me, it can only be recognized that they know this product was unsafe. I have filed a complaint with the NHTSA and numerous other sites. In fact, I have created my own blog: www.flaminghyundai.blogspot.com, which has links to 5 other blog pages describing my story. What is so crazy about all of this is you can find 50 stupid & petty things recalled at walmart everyday, but a vehicle catches fire and your told "it's an act of god." Please feel free to contact me at anytime; I welcome your response. Thank you.

- Lakeview, AR, USA

problem #4

Mar 262006

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,000 miles


My pregnant wife was driving down the highway. There was no accident. There were no warning signs before it was to late. Wife saw smoke coming up from the engine of our 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe (odo 24,000 miles). She pulled over to the curb. The vehicle had never done this before. My pregnant wife was pulled out of the burning vehicle by a passerby. Wife suffered a contusion to her right cheek during this incident. She did not know the vehicle was on fire. She notified 911 who sent a fire truck and police officer. The vehicle exploded at least 3 times as she waited outside in the cold, frenzied by the disaster. The fire was so intense that the front wheels were melted. A policeman and 2 fire trucks responded to the blaze. The vehicle has been declared a total loss by allstate. Reliable imports (springfield, mo.) would not even help us obtain a rental car. The safety features of this Hyundai vehicle were proudly acclaimed by the car salesman and manager at the dealership. Both the manufacturer and the dealership have been unhelpful in helping us in any way. The vehicle was under a full bumper-to-bumper, new vehicle warranty. They will not accept responsibility for the fire, and do not offer to conduct their own investigation on the vehicle. Hyundai and reliable imports show complete disinterest in the vehicle's spontaneous combustion, and show the world no concern over the fact that this may prove to be a non-isolated event. Since then, reliable imports in springfield, Missouri has fiendishly sent me an email reminder to have my vehicle service renewed. The insurance company and Hyundai both failed to instruct me to file my complaint @ NHTSA. An attorney instructed me to file the complaint here.

- Lakeview, AR, USA

problem #3

Dec 012004

Santa Fe

  • miles
The vehicle would cut off, the steering would then lock up and the vehicle would turn itself back on again.

- Tijeras, NM, USA

problem #2

Oct 052004

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,256 miles
When coming to a stop, the engine revved at a high rate. The consumer shut the vehicle off applied the parking brake to try and stop the engine from revving. Please provided additional information. Engine revved repeatedly despite brake being pressed all the way to the floor and car leaped forward with every surge at least 6 times. Dealer could not find the problem. The consumer traded in the vehicle.

- Bethesda, MD, USA

problem #1

Mar 232004

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10 miles
While driving at any speed the consumer felt the vehicle shaking. When the vehicle was being shifted from reverse to drive the consumer could feel the engine slipping. The dealer has examined the vehicle three times concerning the engine. The dealer found there is a component that is missing from the engine. The dealer did not explain what the component was that is needed.

- Clinton, IL, USA

Not what you are looking for?