Kia Motors Rio

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Catastrophic Engine Damage Due To Timing Belt Defect
Posted by on
KELSO, WASHINGTON -- We purchased our 2005 KIA Rio Sedan new after a friend told us about KIA.

We have had our Kia serviced according to Kia's requirements and have also kept all the receipts.

October 30th 2008 our Kia lost power and the engine stalled on the freeway and would not restart. It was towed to the mechanic, who within minutes had found the problem.

The teeth on the timing belt had separated from the belt 6 inches in length and therefore the engine had become out of time. The Kia Rio has an "Interference designed Engine" meaning when the crank shaft and camshaft become out of time with each other, because of the belt jumping a tooth or the belt breaking it allows the pistons to strike the valves. Not good news! My Kia's engine has bent or broken valves in all cylinders, the crankshaft and camshaft will not turn to allow for realignment. The mechanic told me there had been catastrophic damage done to the engine because of the faulty KIA belt and started searching the data base for a new engine to replace the three year old engine we have always taken great care of. The mechanic was not as surprised as I was to learn the engine is expensive compared to others in the same class. Due to the failure rate of this engine, because of its design (interference engine)it has become the hottest engine and hardest to find because it is in such high demand.

The person who gave us the word of mouth to purchase our vehicle experienced this same thing with her 2003 Rio and was forced to replace most of the components of the engine.

I immediately called a good friend who also owned a Kia, because of our word of mouth and told her to get hers inspected. She had purchased the vehicle used and the first owner never replaced the belt and the current mileage is over 80,000. She called me after the appointment to tell me thanks because the belt on her car had started to crack. The Kia Service center had three Kia's waiting for engines at the time my fiend had her belt replaced.

The timing belt is due to be replaced before 60,000 to maintain the warranty, which we did. Our vehicle has just passed the 100,000-mile coverage point and is currently at 116,963 miles, almost all freeway miles too. We were still following Kia's recommendations for maintaining the vehicle and getting ready to replace the timing belt for the second time, that would have been due before 120,000 miles.

Our car is three years old, we are the only owners, and we have all the receipts for work and maintenance that were performed on our Kia.

I contacted Kia to let them know what had happened to bring to their attention this flaw in the engines design; after all these huge companies rely on us consumers to let them know if their products are great or if things need attention. A Kia representative said "Well you did purchase the least expensive vehicle Kia makes!" like this is an expected thing to happen because the vehicle is less expensive than others.

The Kia representative I spoke with yesterday told me Kia suggests having the belt inspected every 15,000 miles, which ironically is not suggested in the "Kia Motors Warranty And Consumer Information Manual" nor is this suggestion located in the Kia Rio Owner's Manual! While checking for this information "KIA suggests"a lot of what I did find was "Your selection of a Kia was a great investment, it will give you years of driving pleasure." "Kia is dedicated to your complete satisfaction." From the moment you get behind the wheel of your new Kia vehicle, you'll notice how satisfying it feels; a feeling you'll appreciate for as long as you own your Kia vehicle. “Your complete satisfaction is our primary concern."

After all of this I can honestly say I love my Kia, it is a great economic vehicle, and very cost effective. I have not had many complaints until now. Unfortunately the KIA Motor Corporation is not willing to listen to their consumers when valid concerns arise. After the 100,000 mile warranty there seems to be no cooperation or support from KIA Motor Corporation.
The very sad thing is KIA is aware of this issue as are all of the KIA dealers I have spoken with. "KIA is aware but is not planning to change the engine design!"

Just like the power that word of mouth had, helped me to make the decision to purchase this Kia, as well as helped my friend to purchase hers; word of mouth will also help the future consumers avoid these issues that will always be present with Kia until Kia is willing to make changes to make a better product. Because the Kia Motors Corporation is unwilling to listen to consumers concerns, consumers have an obligation to let other's know this information so they can make an informed decision. I would not have purchased this vehicle three years ago if the word of mouth at the time was...My engine had to be replaced when the car was three years old, and the company knew I would be in this situation when I was purchasing the vehicle three years ago and never said a thing about it. How is it all the Kia representative I spoke with are aware but they will not say a word when unsuspecting consumers hand over the cash?

Please continue to let Kia know if you are a happy consumer or not. Your voice is still being heard, and helping others make a more informed decision to buy or not. Like I said before, this KIA has been a great vehicle as I expected it to be when I purchased it three years ago and as KIA says It will be for years to come. Unfortunately years to come amounted to only three.
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Anonymous on 11/14/2008:
There are a number of technical service bulletins on the 2005 Rio. None of them refer to the timing belt. Sounds to me like the belt was defective. Here's your problem, you need to find out what the warranty coverage, if any, there is on the belt. Then take it from there.
BobJohn on 11/14/2008:
Since you are out of warranty I think you are out of luck. The age of the car is immaterial, it is the mileage. Check with your mechanic about a used (salvage) engine, it may be cheaper than getting yours replaced. A new engine will be astronomically high compared to these options.
jktshff1 on 11/14/2008:
Very cost effective indeed until something goes wrong.
BobJohn on 11/14/2008:
Many rebuilty engines come with a warranty but not like a new engine for sure. Put in the rebuilt engine and sell the car before the next timing belt breaks.
Catastrophic Damages on 11/14/2008:
PassingBy>This is the first thing I did when it happened was to locate the receipt because this would show the belt was under warranty. If the belt was under warranty when this happened it would at least given KIA less wiggle room!
Unfortunately the belt is warrantied for a year, again we were just over this coverage!

BobJonh>The mechanic was able to find an engine with 30,000 miles, because it is so sought after the thing cost's more than my KIA bluebooked at before this happened to it, imagine that!

We still don't know if we will be able to replace key componants of the engine or the whole engine. This will be determined shortly but whatever is more cost effective is the way we will go.

Thank you for responding, great idea's. If anything else comes to mind please let me know. I will be working on this thing for a while, and any help and knowledge is always appreciated!

Yes, we absolutely will sell this vehicle only because the problem causing all these damages will not be fixed.

I really don't have a problem with my car, I am not unrealistic about these things happening. Having said that I do think as KIA states in all the written material we, consumers are given when we purchased our new KIA how much KIA stands behind their vehicles and wants our complete satisfaction! This is true as I have experienced until the warranty period is over, they do wash their hands of their product.

Again it goes back to these huge companies relying on the consumers to let them know how their products are doing out in the market. Realistically, they don't have the time to wait ten years to put a product into production and because of that they do not have the data over a long period to know how their products will hold up! They rely on...the consumer!
saj80 on 11/14/2008:
Did your friend recommend a Kia before or after they had the same problems?
bill on 11/14/2008:
I hate timing belts. Timing chains are far more relaible. I don't understand why some car companies still use belts.
Catastrophic Damages on 11/14/2008:
saj80>I wouldn't call them a friend if this happened before I purchased my car!

bill> I cannot agree more, to rely solely on a part that has a very short life span to prevent this kind of engine damage is not an intellegent design, yet they have been using this design a long time.

The reason they probably don't use a chain vs the belt is of course it is cheeper to use a belt. Metal to metal (timing chain) would require the system to keep the chain lubricated, completely changing the design. If it would work to just slap a chain on my KIA after it is fixed I definitely would!
not happy on 01/13/2013:
I also have a 2005 kia rio. On my way home from work 2 days ago, it just stopped running. Had to have it towed. Same thing the timing belt broke and ruined the engine.
chayes on 06/11/2013:
Same experience. Even took car in and was told it was the air filter/ no check engine light nothing. I was driving and then car just stop going and then wouldn't turn over. Have been looking for a engine for 3 weeks now and cannot even find a used one for under 2200. without labor. and that engine has 60000 on it. hmmm sounds like I would just be doing this again. Now no car and not enough money to pay for a engine which will go out again in a few miles. Wish kia would step up. We will never buy kia again.
tj hopper on 06/29/2013:
my 2003 kia had a timing belt failure at 49,600 miles while under the 10 year/100,000 mile powertrain warranty. kia says timing belt must be replaced at 60,000, and I scheduled my 50,000 mile maintenance just before my belt failed, which would not have been replaced anyway. after six months of lawyers and lawsuits, the judge found in my favor and kia was forced to pay the replacement costs for my engine. it took another several months to locate a suitable motor, and I just got it back. replace the timing belt every 40,000 miles, and not at a dealership
mike on 08/17/2013:
sure sell it and pass on the problem
John on 11/06/2013:
On November 5, 2013 the timing belt on my '05 Kia Rio failed. Engine destroyed. Not worth replacing.
I had no idea that this was a problem with this model and engine. Shame on Kia.
They have known of this problem for quite some time and did not notify owners.
Now I have to acquire a replacement car for $$$. I had fully expected this car to last into the 200K range as all my Mazdas have done. I will notify Calif Dept of Consumer Affairs and Atty Gen just to make myself feel better about this.
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Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
HOUSTON, TEXAS -- I purchased a 2012 Kia Rio Lx in October 2011. I left the dealership and went to an alarm system facility because the car didn't have even a basic anti-theft alarm system. I drove this car with absolutely no problems for over 3 months, even on a long distance trip. However, about two weeks after I went to the dealership for the first oil change ( only because it was free ) , a problem occurred as I was making a right turn onto a street. The car hesitated, seemed to stall, and the engine malfunction came on. I pulled over to the curb, turned the engine off, then on, and the car drove again but the engine malfunction light was still on. I went to the dealership, they said it was the throttle body control, ordered a replacement, and I had to go back for them to install it. However, the car continued to have the problem, so I went back to the dealership. They kept the car five days, then said the aftermarket
alarm was the problem, charged me to remove the alarm and rewire the car.
I didn't even make it home from the dealership and the problem occurred again. I went back, the cause of the problem then became the wiring harness which they said was damaged by the alarm system installer and would cost me $1877.00 to repair. If it was the alarm system causing the problem, why did it take over three months before the stalling problem occurred ? I contacted Kia Headquarters by sending them all the invoices from the dealership, the alarm system company, and the AutoZone diagnostic I got in one visit that dealership couldn't seem to do in several. No response whatsoever so far !!! The dealership is full of bull and apparently so is the headquarters way of handling customer concerns. I will take this car to a competent certified mechanic (not KIA ) and hope the car can be repaired properly since I'm stuck with it for now.

What I don't understand is, if the alarm system caused the problem of the car stalling/hesitating every now and then when I try to make a right turn, why did it take over three months after installation for the problem to occur ? And since they removed the alarm and supposedly rewired the car, why is the problem still occurring ? And, the funny thing is, an AutoZone employee was able to diagnose the possible causes
in one visit ; 1. ETS Relay 2. poor electrical or loose wiring 3.

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Yeshandle on 05/04/2012:
Did you go back to the alarm system installer with these problems ?
baaburn on 05/10/2012:
Yes , I did . They have been in business for 17 years and claim to not have had any problems with their alarms or installations . As , I said , I'm stuck with the car for now , but , I do find it annoying that KIA Headquarters hasn't had the decency to at least try to contact me. I'm prepared to pay for repairs so I can drive the car without being afraid it might stall and I end up in an accident . I just don't have any confidence in KIA service techs to do the job properly or correctly.
Skye on 05/10/2012:
Just because they claim they've never had a problem with their alarm systems or installations, does not mean this is true.

I'd reconsider and go back to the alarm company, after all the problems you are having, because as you said, all was fine, until they installed this after market alarm.

Good luck.
baaburn on 05/14/2012:
I decided to just to do without an alarm ( which the dealership has already charged me to remove. Hopefully , the rewiring they did will agree with the computer eventually . Thank you for your input. But , the alarm system was installed the same day I bought the car and it drove fine for over 3 months. It would seem the alarm would have affected the car within a day or at least within a week or so. But , 3 months before the problem occurred ???
trmn8r on 05/14/2012:
The Autozone "diagnosis" appears consistent with the dealer reporting a harness issue. Not surprising, since hooking up an OBD device (Autozone) will read out generic problem codes and the dealer's will be more specific.

It's hard to say why it ran fine for 3 months, but to me this could be related to the alarm install.
baaburn on 05/24/2012:
That could be true and since Kia doesn't seem to offer an alarm system for the car ( I asked the last time I was there ) , I am doing without an alarm . At least it is covered by insurance if someone decides to take it !
Marcos on 11/16/2012:
I think this issue has nothing to do with the alarm. My 2007 Kia Rio has the exact same issue you described and the car has no alarm. I have been struggling with Kia for quite a while on this issue and frankly I gave up. I really believe this is an engineering flaw on this model
MHD on 02/26/2013:
I bought a RIO 2012 and I had the engin check 4 times. Anyone knows how to contact KIA Korea?
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2002 Kia Rio
Posted by on
We purchased this new car from Weston Kia in Gresham Oregon for the gas mileage, we had the 30,000 mile service completed at about 33,000 and planned on having the 60,000 miles service completed by 65,000 however the timing belt broke and took out the motor, (this is a very common problem with Kia motors) Weston worked with Kia and agreed to order a new motor and provided us with a free rental car, if we agree to pay for the 60,000 mile service which of course we did, this ordeal took 11 weeks. They provided us with no extended warranty on the new motor beyond the 100,000 on the original car. We had the 90,000 service completed by Weston and also had a new timing belt put on before the 60,000 miles service on the new engine. 40,000 miles later the timing belt broke again and took out the whole engine, of course we have 170,000 miles on the car not but only 105,000 on the new motor and only 40,000 on the new timing belt that should have at least lasted 60,000 miles. We took it to Weston and they told us we needed a new engine $3,000.00 or they could get us a used one with a 6 month warranty, so we filed a complaint with Kia consumer and worked with them for 2 weeks only for them to come back and say that they will not do anything and that they really only warranty the timing belts for 12 months. BEWARE do not buy a Kia unless you plan on putting a timing belt on it every 12, 000 miles. We are so disappointed with this company we could and would not recommend them to anyone, if only one person does not buy a Kia because of this review I will be happy.

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goduke on 09/08/2009:
You have 170K miles on a 7 year old car and your upset that the timing belt went out?
sean on 06/22/2011:
ALSO>>>> the belt is due at the 5 year old period too! not just the mileage! So it was over due by roughly 4 years by my calculations!
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Worst in Services
Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
CALIFORNIA -- I bought a Kia five year ago, I miss payment but I catch up some I put toward the end of my loans. To my surprise they call me to let me know that my loan is up, this was a month ago I told the representative I was unable to pay the whole amount. She give me a plan to pay it after paying a 1000 dollars my car was out for repo. When she told me once I pay the 1000 I would have until Dec 2012 to pay off the loan. Now my loan balance is 2000 and I have to pay it by Nov 2012 or it charge off and repo. After making ever effort to pay them.
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sabletaz on 11/04/2012:
ok4now on 11/05/2012:
I don't have a clue what the OP is talking about.
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Kia Rio 2006
Posted by on
GREENSBORO, NORTH CAROLINA -- I'm having a problem with Kia warranty on my car. I have change my oil on a regular base, but between oil changes my oil would be low so I would added more to it. I called Kia on more than one occasion about this problem but nothing was ever done. There was no sign of a leak and now they telling me that there's a lot of soot on the engine. So my engine is shoot and they don't want to replace it. I have no control over where the oil goes and this situation lies in the hands of the manufacture and not the consumer. As for now I'm waiting and researching for help.
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Old Timer on 10/26/2011:
It might make sense to pay a few dollars and get an opinion from an independent repair shop. But not just the local repair shop, a AAA rated and approved repair place or something similar. Once you have the proof of what the problem is then you have the tools to fight Kia. Kia is not going to hand over a new engine without putting up a battle first. People have gotten paint jobs on 10 year old cars and trucks because they were able to prove the original product was faulty. I know a person that got a new engine on a 6 year old Jaguar because they got an analysis from an independent licensed Jaguar repair shop proving the engine came from the factory with defects.

Best of luck to you. They will fight back, they always do.
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Glass Crack
Posted by on
DARTMOUTH NS CANADA -- Hi! I recently just bought a Kia rio5 and I must say the car is wonderful! I would recommend it to anyone that is looking for a comfortable ride and a major gas saver! The only major complaint I have is that 4 days after I bought the car a small crack in the front window appeared. This crack did not happen while I was driving and nothing hit the window! I called Kia motors and told them about it. They said they would look at it when I was going to get my under coating done! They looked at it and said that the crack was not due to pressure and that they could do nothing about it. The sales man who sold me the car asked me if I had any claims on my insurance! I have never made a claim so he told me that one claim wouldn't matter! They left me at that, and now the small crack has grown and is now just about across the whole top of the window! So I have a brand new car and I know this crack will not pass mvi.

In my opinion with the car not even over 1000km they should have replaced the window with no questions asked, and plus you can tell that nothing had even hit the window to create the crack!
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dan gordon on 03/24/2011:
on what theory of law would you claim a glass crack?

first of all you should understand your insurance. Comprehensive claims can't raise your premiums and second almost all insurers would have covered 100% a
glass repair before the crack spread. I've never heard of glass being covered as part of a mfctg claim.
Skye on 03/24/2011:
You need to file a claim. It's just a simple windshield replacement, and we've all gone through it.

Heck, I've bought brand new vehicles, driven them out of the showroom, only to have a rock from the constant road construction cause a small crack, that I immediately replaced. I once replaced my windshield 3 times in 6 months, because of all the road construction going on in NY.

Glass is never covered under a manufacturers claim. Unless you can prove it's a defect, it's up to you to make sure you get it repaired, not Kia. Yes, I know it's not fair, but that's how it works.

We just drove up to Aurora, Colorado, and I can't believe our windshield survived the treacherous journey with all the rocks that hit our windshield. Unfortunately, that's part of what you deal with when you drive.
momsey on 03/24/2011:
Most likely, your deductible is higher than the cost to replace the windshield so I wouldn't even bother with insurance. Just get it fixed.
dan gordon on 03/24/2011:
windshield repairs often have a lower deductible than other claims
momsey on 03/24/2011:
It depends on your state if there is a lower (or no) deductible for windshields. Here's a listing state by state:
Anonymous on 03/24/2011:
momsey, good info--and not just for windshields.
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Timing Belt Class Action Lawsuit
Posted by on
After reading so many complaints about the timing belt issue with Kia Motors, I am hoping there is an attorney out there that would be willing to handle a Class Action Lawsuit against Kia Motors.

I have a 2004 Kia with 63,00 miles and the Timing Belt has broken. The dealer says it will cost $4000 to replace the engine. It is within 3000 miles of the recommended replacement date. The car was just paid off and now it is a piece of junk.

Kia refuses to stand behind it. Lets all form a group and sue the pants off these guys. They sell a inferrior product and know it.

fhaberman@bluebottle. com
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Anonymous on 02/10/2010:
What does the owner's manual say about replacing the belt? I am willing to bet it's less than 63,000 miles. If you didn't do the maintenance, you haven't got a prayer. Even if you won the legal lottery, some lawyer would get a million dollars, and your share would be a coupon for an oil change.
Starlord on 02/10/2010:
Every car that I have seen that uses a timing belt suffers timing belt failure at about 60K miles. In addition, every one that has failed has had the ability to be repaired for a lot less than $4000 and without replacing the engine. What did you due to tear the engine up? Our sheriff's department had a half dozen Ford Escorts, and each and every one had the timing belt fail. Not a one of them had to have the engine replaced, and it was a fairly simple job to repair them. Your yelling about a class action suit is silly, all they do is make the lawyers richer, and you MIGHT get an LOF apiece for your trouble
Starlord on 02/10/2010:
GMTA, Ken.
Critical_level2 on 02/10/2010:
Star, Kia uses interference engines, like Honda, Toyota, and a few others. When the belt breaks, the pistons are still moving, but the valves stop moving. This can cause the piston to collide with an open valve. This causes bent valves, broken pistons, etc. That is why it is so important to have the belt changed around 60K before it breaks, or the motor can get toasted.
Anonymous on 02/10/2010:
I've had two break on me. I lucked out, huh?
Anonymous on 02/10/2010:
Four thousand dollars for a new belt? That's at least 2500 too much.
Critical_level2 on 02/10/2010:
Its $4K to replace the motor that got wiped when the belt broke.
YunkaG on 02/11/2010:
I bought a Kia and the salesman went over several times to make sure I changed the timing belt at 60k miles. I will when it gets there, not wait until it is over. But hey Kia, 3000 miles over - give the poster a break.
KiaDrvr03 on 04/11/2010:
3000 miles over?... are you kidding? I don't know what your service schedule looks like, but mine had Timing belt replacement at 40K.

I did not have mine done @ 40K, in fact, didn't have it done until it caused the check engine sensor to come on. It cost me about $500 to have replaced. If you're being told $4000, you must have really done some major damage to your engine that a bad timing belt can't even begin to take the blame for. What the hell were you doing in your car that caused that much trouble?
kiadrv on 01/06/2012:
just driving a kia when the timing belt breaks ruines the engine. This happens so frequently and often that Kia engines are hard to find and in high demand. I used kia engine runs around $3000. In comparison my friends neon needed a new engine and it was $1000 for engine and to have it put in.
NoMoKiasForMe on 08/02/2013:
Poor engine design causes the destruction of the engine, when timing belt breaks! Failure not caused by the driver..Almost 40 yrs owning various cars, never had a failed engine with a belt or chain break, til this 2004 Kia Optima. And yes, there is a class action lawsuit against Kia for this issue.
Jody on 09/01/2013:
My timing belt broke at 51,853 miles and toasted my 2008 Kia sportage motor.
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2005 Kia Rio & Timing Belt - Dead Engine
Posted by on
Loved the car until it died. They engine is blown because my timing belt broke teeth. This caused the engine to be damaged. Still owe $5,000 dollars on this car and I am unable to fix this vehicle. Belt died at 79,000.. so when they say to change your timing belt at 60,000 .. you better.. It has an interference engine. When the belt goes.. so does your engine.

New engine is $2,000 dollars .. replacement.
To rebuild over $1500.00 easy.

Now I'm in the hole $5,000 and have a very expensive paper weight in my front yard. Will never buy another Kia ever again since this seems to be a very common issue and they parts are way to expensive to repair.
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Anonymous on 11/30/2009:
If you knew the belt needed to be replaced almost 20,000 miles earlier, and you didn't... ??
dan gordon on 11/30/2009:
Volvos and some other high end cars have interference engines as well. Timing belts are a maintenance items. Cause you didn't want to spend the $$ Kia must be a terrible mfctr? What's wrong with this logic? I guess you may ride a bike or take the bus. That would really show those sob's.
Desert_Mutt on 12/01/2009:
You guys sure are touchy. Any car that has an engine that can blow up because a rubber belt loses some teeth, is not well built in my book. There are many documented cases of the timing belts breaking before 60k. [snip - please be respectful]
goduke on 12/01/2009:
I would have thought that the local mechanic who does your routine maintenance checks at 15K intervals should have noticed it. Have you talked to them about why they missed it?
redmx3racer on 12/01/2009:
Desert, interference engines have been around for a long time and are made by many automakers both low end and high end. If you did not get the work done as per Kia's recomendation, it is your fault the car died. Have some broken before 60K? Probabaly. That would be a defect. But your car had what, 79K on it? That is not a defect, that is irresponsible ownership. I have 0 sympathy for you.
JR in Orlando on 12/01/2009:
Mr. Mutt: The engine does not blow up. The crankshaft/pistons are rotating with the timing belt running from the crankshaft to the overhead cams/valves. The pistons and the valves have to be synchronized so that when the piston comes up, the valves are closed so the piston does not hit them. In a non-interference engine there is enough room in the cylinder so that even if they get out of sequence, there is no collision. In an "interference engine" there is not enough room, so that if the piston comes up and the valves have not closed, the valves will be hit by the piston and damaged. The engine does not blow up, the broken belt simply allows these parts to get out of sequence. In light of the significant damage that occurs when this happen, it is foolish not to replace the belt within the 60,000 mile limit.

Years ago I had an overhead cam engine that I disconnected the timing chain between cam and crankshaft to repair. I tried to remove the end cap on the camshaft with a wrench, and I can still hear the "pinging" that occurred as the wrench turned the cam and valves opened, hitting the piston tops. "ping" An expensive lesson.
Slimjim on 12/01/2009:
You have to give Detroit cars some credit here. Timing CHAIN failures are far less frequent on American designs and most are non interference engines anyway if they do.
TINA,MN on 07/15/2011:
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Timing Belt
Posted by on

I think I'm ready to give up before I get started. I have a two year old Kia that last Tuesday blew the engine. Had it towed to the nearest Kia dealership (30 minutes away) Only to be told that the timing belt broke and blew the engine it has 65,000 miles on it. I have diligently taken care of this car, oil changes every 3000 miles etc. Replaced all the tires, almost from the minute we drove it off the lot the tires would randomly go flat. Any hoot, the local dealership told me the timing belt was broke and not under warranty. BS. Instead of paying another 6 grand for a piece of crap, I bought a Toyota on Friday. So today we rent a car trailer head the dealer to pick up the car. They left our car in pieces, we opened the hood and low and behold the timing belt is not broken it's missing some teeth.

Now I'm scratching my head but my hubby is thinking we've been screwed by Kia yet again. The tech tells us the teeth rubbed off when the belt froze. Well in order for the belt to freeze doesn't something have to break first. We are getting an attorney and fighting Kia. For the techs out there that work for Kia and your response to people having issues with them is it's neglect and abuse, I say BS To you too, Kia is a horrible company that makes a killing off of people that can't afford to purchase a higher end vehicle way to Screw the little guy.

We get to make payments on cars that are useless.. Apparently so is the company Kia..
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Anonymous on 11/10/2007:
IF the belt wore down enough or got slack, it could jump a bit throwing your timing out of wack thus causing your engine to get out of timing and blow.
jktshff1 on 11/10/2007:
kia....killed in action...nuff said
Anonymous on 11/10/2007:
jktshff1, I can add no more.
moneybags on 11/10/2007:
Today, so many cars have engine parts and belts made of aluminum. The manufacturer and mechanics may not tell you (afterall, they want to make money on repairs and replacements) but ALL cars should have timing belts REPLACED between 50,000 and 60,000 miles. Your instruction book may even tell you that. A $250 repair (preventive maintenance) can save you thousands.
tjputvin on 11/11/2007:
Ahhhh but hindsight is 20/20. I took the car to the dealer and do you think they told me to have the timing belt changed??? nope.. I've decided that Kia is a disposable car. It would just be nice if they made them so people could at least get them paid off before they blew. I think they would make more money this way, people would be more willing to upgrade every few years instead of getting upset and bad mouthing them, enough complaints and Kia will not be selling anymore cars. I'm not sure about Kia's but I've heard for a bit more you can have the timing belt switched out for a chain. I've also learned my lesson on extended warranties also, not that it would have made a difference with Kia but I have one with my Toyota now. When purchasing a new car on Friday our Bank told us, we'll finance anything you want, just not a Kia. That says a lot. They told us that they are no longer financing Kia without extended warranties. Which, leads me to another thought, ask your bank about extended warranties, we learned that dealers pay 400.00 for them and charge anywhere from 1600 to 2500 but the bank has a better deal and with Kia's you might actually get your work covered, Not real sure how that works though, talk to your loan officer, that is if you use your bank instead of your dealer as we do.

tjputvin on 11/11/2007:
JD How too cheap to get it done, Had I knowns it needed done I would have done it. I'm so cheap that instead of fixing the pc of crap Kia I bought a new Toyota. CUSTOMER SERVICE is not Kia's thing, screwing the little guy is.. You get part of the story, and then you only read part of that. And throw this at me. READ READ READ, I maintained my Kia, They just make crap.
jktshff1 on 11/11/2007:
tip, did ya read the book that came with the car? It has a suggested maintenance schedule. More is required than oil changes and tires. It's that way with any car you buy.
tjputvin on 11/11/2007:
Read the manual, memorized it. Not, I did read through the manual, I also just assumed, and you know what that does, that Customer service would come with the car. I work and live and love the customer service business and if I did to my customers what Kia does, I would be out of business. It seems more productive to work on a solution. Moneybags and Piratewithparrot thanks for the non judgemental advice.
WhineX on 11/11/2007:
I've heard that Kia has made improvements in quality lately, but early Kia's are poorly engineered cars. As for the belt, there is a maintenance schedule with the owner's manual, and it's the owner's responsility to follow it. If the belt broke, it would cause the intake/exhaust valves to go out of sync and collide with the pistons. If the engine seized, that could shear teeth off the belt w/o breaking it. Either way, if the car is out of warranty, you're kind of outta luck.
Bellyupinmi on 07/24/2008:
I bought my Sedona new, It has received all scheduled oil and maint service all done at KIA dealerships. When I took it in for its 60,000 mile check up at 56,000 miles I was told the timing belt needed changed, KIA refused to cover the 120/100,000 mile warranty as they said the belt was worn because of normal wear and tear much like tires and brakes and they are not covered either
Catastrophic Damages on 11/14/2008:
I'm having the same problem. 2005 KIA RIO new off the lot three years ago. KIA quote "From the moment you get behind the wheel of your new KIA vehicle, you'll notice how satisfying it feels; a feeling you'll appreciate as long as you own your vehicle. Your complete satisfaction is our primary concern!"

KIA mechanics and non KIA mechanics alike as well as the KIA Motors Corporation are aware of this problem, this engine is the highest in demand right now because of the failure rate due to the belt problems.

Catastrophic Damages on 11/14/2008:
Forgot to add to my post...Oct 30th our belt jumped time, because of the "interference engine" design when the timing is off the crankshaft and camshaft are out of time which allows the pistons to strike the valves. My engine has bent or broken valves in all cylinders and we still don't know the full extent of the damage because the engine has to be disassembled and we havn't gotten there yet! Brilliant design flaw, costing consumers millions. Why rely so heavily on a disposable part?
Jim on 06/04/2011:
Boy that sounds familiar. We had the same exact thing happen at 62000 miles and guess what. OH WELL. That was from ROYAL KIA. Never have another Kia!!!!!!
Ann on 06/14/2011:
I was told by the Kia dealership in my town that I needed a new timing belt for my 2007 Kia Rio and they told me they would charge me $540 for this repair. Well, I looked in the owner's mnaual and there was no mention of a timing belt, only a drive belt. I looked online and found a kit with the belt and the tensioner pieces for about $76.00. The $500 must be for the rental car the dealer said they would give me while the work was being done! What a rip-off!
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Kia Rio Stopped After 60.000 Miles , 6 Years And 2 Weeks/Now I Am Without A Job, Soon To Be Homeless .....
Posted by on
CERRITOS, CALIFORNIA -- KIA is the worst after all I have read on your pages. I am so sick, I thought I bought a car with a good warranty when I purchased it brand new. The car stopped for no reason, engine is frozen does not turn, dealer declared Kia has denied my claim. 6 weeks later and I'm out of a job/savings/soon to be homeless/child took off/no transportation, how can I drive my child to very important sport events/competitions, my life came to a hold when this darn car stopped...

What shall I do help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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User Replies:
JayByJay on 11/22/2011:
Take it to a mechanic and find out why it stopped.
Maybe then Kia will give back your job, savings, house, and children.
Starlord on 11/22/2011:
One question. You stated 60K miles. Did you replace the timing belt, as is so often required maintenance on many cars these days? JBJ is right. Take it to a mechanic, and find out WHY it quit working. Properly maintained engines don't just suddenly seize.
clutzycook on 11/22/2011:
Just a question, but did you lose your job because your car died or was it just one in a series of unlucky breaks?
CowboyFan on 11/23/2011:
When the timing belt breaks, the valves stop moving, but the pistons continue to work. On some vehicle this makes no difference because the distance between the top of the piston on the upstroke and the stopped valves is sufficient for there is no contact (non-interference engine). On other vehicles, including some Kia's, there is less distance so that the rising piston strikes the stopped valves, bending them and freezing the engine (interference engines). This is a major problem requiring significant expense.

The recommended timing belt change on most vehicles is 60,000 miles. This is not a warranty issue, but a maintenance issue the same as changing the oil. As others have said, take it to a mechanic and find out what the problem is, or check on-line and with the dealer to find out what kind of engine you have. This should give you a clue as to the kind of problems you face.
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