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Discussion Starter #1
We bought a 2013 Elantra for my son with 90K. The car runs and seems great. I started reading more about it after the purchase (bad on me) but we got it very low cost. I now have read horror stories about engine failures. I also read 1 woman drove hers 1 million miles. I'm wondering how concerned I should be or what my odds are for a failure. I normally maintain my cars well and drive them over 200K.


I'm wondering if I should trade it in before the engine goes kaput. Or if I'll probably be okay. I'm wondering how many high mileage ones are here and what the odds are of having the engine knock and engine failure. I hope to keep it for 200K.
 

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I hope to keep my 2016 Elantra for 200k also. I got mine with last year with 78k miles and now have 104k with no major problems. The only thing I would do immediately would be to do a drain/refill of the transmission fluid and coolant if not already done. I also changed the spark plugs on my car along with routine maintenance such as oil changes every 4k to 5k miles and replaced the air filter.
 

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The auto trans fluid interval on the Elantra MDs w/1.8L engine is 120K. The dealer is equipped to do it and it is not a DIY job (speaking as someone that has pulled engines, replaced gas tanks, etc.) The procedure is quite focused, requiring certain temperature(s) and such. There is no transmission dipstick from which to add or draw out fluid.

Believe it or not, Amazon and WalMart both carry synthetic engine oils that rival the best of the best for quite a bit less cost. Translation: the company(ies) making the oils are the same sources for very high end synthetic oils, and in head-to-head testing you can look up on the InterWeb, perform at the same levels or are just barely edged out by far more expensive alternatives.

Iridium spark plugs are likely to last the longest while operating at a high level of performance the whole service period.

You may wish to invest in an oil-less, reusable air filter.
 

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Did the car come w/oil change receipts or at least receipts for oil/filter purchases? If there isn't a history of oil changes to draw from, that's not awesome for any vehicle w/90K miles. Might want to do a compression check--if you can change spark plugs, you can do a compression check. Results are as much about even readings as they are about total compression--all cylinders should be within 5% to 10% of each other. Low compression would certainly signal possible poor oil maintenance, which could lead to many other issues.

Checking vacuum is another easy but valuable diagnosis procedure to help determine engine health--plenty on the subject on the InterWeb.

Checking spark plug lower insulators for sandy-tan coloring and dry (not oily) condition is another easy and fantastic way to check engine function.

90K is a good place to splurge on high-mileage synthetic engine oil. FIX ANY LEAKS IMMEDIATELY or sell the car, or fix any leaks AND sell the car. Seriously.

Engine flushing could be a great idea, or a terrible idea, depending on whom you ask. One school of thought is that the deposits that accumulate over time help keep things 'glued' in place and loosening those deposits could be asking for trouble. My take: the 'gluing' theory is the worst kind of idiocy and if anything, may be slightly masking seals and sealing surface failures that need repair.
 

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Actually you can do a basic drain and fill on the transmission as easily as an oil change. Just remove the air box to get to the fill plug, level plug and drain plug. The only thing about doing it this way is that you only change about 4 quarts of fluid instead of the full 7 quarts. But if you do this with two consecutive engine oil changes, the transmission will be in much better shape with mostly new fluid. Plus you must take the steps of putting the car in drive and reverse a number of times immediately after the change. Lots of Youtube videos showing this.

Also, I agree entirely with buying the synthetic oil from Walmart. The Supertech full synthetic or high mileage full synthetic is about $16 for five quarts and their filter is about $3. The transmission fluid to use is Valvoline full synthetic which is also available at Walmart.
 

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34 Blast....

I can provide some helpful information as I am a Hyundai Tech and I don't mean that in an inflated, "chest out" type of way....I am also an Elantra owner....

- Hyundai built a real POS engine from 2012-2015 called the "Theta" 2.4....these engines started failing on a regular basis around 100,000 miles give or take 20,000 and depending on regular maintenance history. Hyundai extended their warranty on these engines out to 120,000 miles....

No, this has nothing to do with your Elantra but everything to do with your engine and Hyundai's desperate need to maintain its customer base. I have been replacing Hyundai engines now for a couple years and have only replaced a handful of Elantra engines and those were due to driver negligence. I'll let you in on a secret....if your engine blows it's very likely Hyundai will cover it. I do more warranty work then I do customer pay work and its frustrating because warranty work doesn't pay much.

So....some recommendations for you based on what I have seen come through my shop....

1. Because you do not know the true history behind your vehicles engine I would get a timing job done. Timing chain, tensioner and chain guide. I realize this can be expensive but it will prolong your engine life considerably.

2. Stick with OEM on everything Hyundai. Oil filter, spark plugs, coils etc.....Hyundai did all of it's engine and vehicle testing with Hyundai manufactured parts. It is my experience that Hyundai engines don't do well with aftermarket parts. In fact, I would stay away from aftermarket parts all together if you want to hit 200 G's.

3. Stick to a 3,000 miles oil change. Its difficult to tell but if your one of those people that doesn't not use the exact same type of oil every oil change....premature engine oil sludging can occur if you go to many miles between oil changes. One way you can tell this is by removing your oil cap and look at the underside of the cap....is there sludge build up on the cap? On some models using a bore scope you can look down under the valve cover and see if there is sludge build up. Don't worry though because I have replaced several engines with really bad sludge build up.....Hyundai covered it.

4. [email protected] has an excellent suggestion....a compression check is a great idea....5-10% variance is ok. Your compression should hover somewhere around 140-150 psi....anything less you may have piston rings that wanna crap out on you....

5. Some other off the shelf stuff you can do.....
- if you do your own oil change (especially since you don't know the vehicle history) get the car up on ramps/lift or what ever and drain the engine oil.....then take a couple quarts of the same oil your using and run that through the crankcase and let it ALL drain out the bottom. Doing this drains residual oil left from the original draining. Always replace your oil drain plug gasket and an OEM oil filter.

- Sea Foam is great stuff....running sea foam through the engine will blow most of the carbon and deposits out the exhaust....

- Regular replacement of the air filter and spark plugs is a great idea....may seem like and overkill but I change my plugs every other oil change on my 94 Nissan Sentra simply because like you I want to prolong the engine life....I'm up to 320,000 miles on the car now.

Feel free to message me if you have any other questions or need help. Good luck
 

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My 2012 has this same knocking noise described in their TSB # 14-20-002.

Dealer diagnosed the knock in cylinder 2 and found scoring on cylinder walls. Basically said to replace engine and gave astronomical quote.

I’m just looking for advice on finding a parts vehicle outside of the local bone yard. I am not a mechanical expert by any means just trying to help my mechanic find an engine. I appreciate any input.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Finally came back to revisit thread. There are some very helpful hints here. Car has 99,888 now, The steering wheel rubber coupling went out. Common problem went to have it fixed today, dealer is covering under warranty. Plan to maintain the car and keep driving it. Will do drain and fill on transmission, replace spark plugs, replace engine coolant, have been changing oil every 3K
 
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