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Free car - Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7 V6 rescued - I can see clearly now the clouds have gone!


Blake's Den
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My OH had a Hyundai Tucson, easily one of the most reliable cars we’ve owned. Her previous car a Megane DCi shat it’s engine, so after swapping another engine in I went out to look for something she liked that was at the top of the reliability lists rather than the bottom to replace it. The only reason we got rid of it was the mpg, being a 2.0 litre old school petrol engine with 4wd drag and the aerodynamics of a brick it wasn’t great. 

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7 hours ago, Stixy said:

There is a known problem with these V6's cutting out and most of its caused by a bad connection in the MAF Plug ,check the wire is cable tied to its support bracket 

Thanks for the heads up. Yes, it is definitely cable tied to the bracket as I remember clipping it back into position. Something to keep an eye on I guess.

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  • Blake's Den changed the title to Free car - Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7 V6 rescued
  • 4 months later...

I decided, given the current weather, to have a go getting the air con working. I decided to take the approach of "it just needs a regas m8" with mixed success!

Long story short - it works but the gas is leaking from somewhere that I can't see. I've added sealant and dye but I still can't see where the gas is escaping from.  For those who don't know, the car sat unused for 7 years so I suspect that every O ring is perished. Mechanically it all seems to work. Guess I'll have to go back to driving around with the windows down and the sun roof open.

As I've started commuting again after 2+ years I was hoping that this would be an easy fix but actually I think its probably at the stage of a un-ecconomic repair. As everything else works fine (except for an intermitent digital clock) I'll keep on driving and enjoying it until I get bored.

Obligatory video:

 

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  • Blake's Den changed the title to Free car - Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7 V6 rescued - ice, ice, maybe?
4 hours ago, Blake's Den said:

I decided, given the current weather, to have a go getting the air con working. I decided to take the approach of "it just needs a regas m8" with mixed success!

Long story short - it works but the gas is leaking from somewhere that I can't see. I've added sealant and dye but I still can't see where the gas is escaping from.  For those who don't know, the car sat unused for 7 years so I suspect that every O ring is perished. Mechanically it all seems to work. Guess I'll have to go back to driving around with the windows down and the sun roof open.

As I've started commuting again after 2+ years I was hoping that this would be an easy fix but actually I think its probably at the stage of a un-ecconomic repair. As everything else works fine (except for an intermitent digital clock) I'll keep on driving and enjoying it until I get bored.

Obligatory video:

 

Probably a silly question - but are the caps on both service ports present and sealing properly?

The valve cores in there are quite prone to leaking and can be tricky to trace to the uninitiated as that's where your gauge is attached.

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2 hours ago, Zelandeth said:

Probably a silly question - but are the caps on both service ports present and sealing properly?

The valve cores in there are quite prone to leaking and can be tricky to trace to the uninitiated as that's where your gauge is attached.

Both caps were present and correct. However after regarding one is now temporarily geographically misplaced....

I did check the valve stem on the low side. I did actually notice it bubbling a bit so I quickly tapped the stem which seemed to re-seat it. I then sprayed some WD-40 (closest thing to hand) on it and there were no bubbles forming.

I'm happy to write it off as a bad job for now. Although I'm not sure how you managed your drive back from Scotland with no a/c!

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  • 3 weeks later...

A quick A/C update......it is still working!

Went out for a drive earlier and my in car vent thermometer was showing a blower outlet temp of about 5 deg C (ambinet is 21 deg C here today). I could feel the noticeably cold air blowing on my face and arms so I'm going to call that a win.

IMG_20220807_133902560_HDR.thumb.jpg.646dfba6bf633aea3dd12085319e89d6.jpg

It isn't perfect though. The A/C feel a bit week. To the point that if you put the blower on max then the outlet temperature actually goes up from about 5 deg to 9 deg. I've got three hypotheses as to why this is:

  1. The A/C system was crap to begin with.
  2. The refrigerant level could do with a top up.
  3.  The condensor is bad.

With engine revs and some road speed it does get cooler. I'm guessing that this is due to greater airflow through the condensor and the compressor running at a faster rpm. 

I'm going to leave it as is for now, I might try giving it some more gas in spring next year. But for now it looks like the sealant has done it job. Just needs a re-gas m8!

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  • 1 month later...

A minor update.

The air con has been working just fine so I'm happy with that. I'm using the car more and more as part of my commute and I'm really pleased with the way it drives. Its very smooth, very comfy and can get 26-27 mpg on my commute which is a mix of a roads, b roads, motorway and city driving.

What has begun to irk me is the clock which sometimes works, sometimes doesn't and the cruise control cancel button which never seems to cancel when you want it to. I did a bit of investigation on both and I was expecting to find dirty contacts or corrosion on the wiring plugs but they were both as good as new. Put it all back together and they both seem to be working for now. I'm planning on going to the scrap yard to rob a clock from another Santa Fe as the ebay prices are ridiculous. The last time that I was at the yard they had another Santa Fe tucked well away so I doubt that it has been turned into tin cans by now.

Video update - like, comment subscribe etc etc...

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

After a raid of the scrap yard last weekend I know have a fully functioning clock and cruise control 🙂. Two small wins but enough to improve my commuting experience.

I robbed the parts from the only dead Santa Fe in the yard. Which got me thinking.......have they all already died and have been turned into tin cans? Or do they run forever? Or did nobody buy them in the first instance?! There were plenty of parts left on the scrap Santa Fe, in fact it was in surprisingly good condition. It was tucked right at the back of the yard so is unlikely to be squahsed anytime soon.

I was also amazed at the number of R50 Mini's in the yard. Which of course lead me straight to seeing how much they sell for on ebay 🙂

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  • 4 weeks later...

Minor achievement - the Santa Fe passed 34000 miles the other day, apparantly whilst going backwards!

IMG_20221012_155111433.thumb.jpg.d0565d3f87f134af9d7cb012a9ed82c0.jpg

Yes, thats 34,000 miles for a car which is 16 years old so just over 2000 miles a year. But 7 years of that it didn't move and then we had 2 covid years. I'm putting the miles on it now, easily 100+ miles a week. It is still running great and is a very relaxed crusier.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Exciting Santa Fe news!

For those who don't know, I inherited the car with no paperwork and had to approve the DVLA for a new V5C. Well yesterday we found a folder full of information about the Santa Fe including the original V5, tax discs, accessories and the service history 😃.

I knew that the car had been serviced right up to the owners demise. What it has confirmed is that the timing belt was replaced only 6000 miles ago. The bad news is that equates to eleven years 😕. I have peaked at the belt and it looked as good as new with no cracking but a more thorough inspection may be called for. Or do I just leave it and play timing belt roulette? 

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  • Blake's Den changed the title to Free car - Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7 V6 rescued - fuel leak fixed (again)

The fuel leak which first took the car off the road returned (again!),

I was driving the other day, stopped and jumped out to post a letter whilst leaving the car running. Round the back there was a strong smell of petrol but no visible leaks. Further investigation during daylight hours revealed that the fuel line had fatigued due to it being tightly routed. There was a pinhole leak where fuel was squirting out at atomising hence no visible puddle under the car. I think that I caught this almost straight after the leak started.

The temporary fix was to relocate the aftermarket fuel non return valve from the engine to the back which increased the pipe length and reduced the bend. I replaced this today with a 90 degree quick fitting as per the original Hyundai design.

IMG_20221113_103624019.thumb.jpg.87822f07b915c7054c959b56b9e24872.jpg

IMG_20221119_125119234.thumb.jpg.dc1392df00c47ae60060a864e62162a7.jpg

I also had a leak at the front after I moved the non return valve. The drive to work was uneventful. When I started the car to come home it was running lumpy and had a very strong smell of petrol. I popped the bonnet to find fuel squirting all over the engine and the battery! Luckily I had some tools to fix it there and then, cut the pipe a bit shorter and remade a join which solved the problem. I'll be replacing the join at the front with a quick fitting too.

I also took the opportunity to test how smooth the engine is. I balanced a £2 coin on the intake manifold (no expense spared) and it didn't fall over! Who needs a Rolls Royce when you have an old Hyundai 😅

 

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You can’t go wrong with that cost of purchase!!

On the comparative rarity of these, I suspect they were quite expensive for what was still seen as a pretty ‘budget’ brand, particularly as I think they were launched about 2000. 

Most of the people who would have been in the market for a big V6 petrol 4WD would have been able to buy the Nissan/Toyota/Mitsubishi equivalent instead, and probably did just that. I assume there was a diesel model for the farmers but it was probably still some 70s/80s Mitsubishi copy back then and very agricultural. The styling was also unusual - very ‘curvy’ in an era where stuff like the Terrano II was still one box on top of another. 

The first Tucson was launched a bit later (2004ish) and, being more affordable, was quite a bit more more popular. The styling had also been toned down a bit. Common rail diesels by then as well. 

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16 hours ago, AnthonyG said:

but it was probably still some 70s/80s Mitsubishi copy back then and very agricultural.

Actually, i think the diesel 1st gen Santa Fe was one of the first Hyundais to have a CRDI engine

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On 11/20/2022 at 10:53 PM, AnthonyG said:

You can’t go wrong with that cost of purchase!!

On the comparative rarity of these, I suspect they were quite expensive for what was still seen as a pretty ‘budget’ brand, particularly as I think they were launched about 2000. 

Most of the people who would have been in the market for a big V6 petrol 4WD would have been able to buy the Nissan/Toyota/Mitsubishi equivalent instead, and probably did just that. I assume there was a diesel model for the farmers but it was probably still some 70s/80s Mitsubishi copy back then and very agricultural. The styling was also unusual - very ‘curvy’ in an era where stuff like the Terrano II was still one box on top of another. 

The first Tucson was launched a bit later (2004ish) and, being more affordable, was quite a bit more more popular. The styling had also been toned down a bit. Common rail diesels by then as well. 

I'm not sure what the purchase price was new, I haven't been able to find that in the history that I have. But I suspect it was the most expensive Hyundai that you could buy in the UK at the time.  The coupe must have been a close second.

Yes it is quite a dated design. Whilst mine is a 2005 model it was launched in 1999. Given an average 36 months design and development period that means that the concept was laid down in 1996! It doesn't feel old though, it is quite refined and very comfortable. The styling is very late 90's early 00's and it has a face that only its mother could love😆

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On 8/7/2022 at 2:49 PM, Blake's Den said:

It isn't perfect though. The A/C feel a bit week. To the point that if you put the blower on max then the outlet temperature actually goes up from about 5 deg to 9 deg. I've got three hypotheses as to why this is:

  1. The A/C system was crap to begin with.
  2. The refrigerant level could do with a top up.
  3.  The condensor is bad.

With engine revs and some road speed it does get cooler. I'm guessing that this is due to greater airflow through the condensor and the compressor running at a faster rpm. 

I'm going to leave it as is for now, I might try giving it some more gas in spring next year. But for now it looks like the sealant has done it job. Just needs a re-gas m8!

If it's a keeper it's worth having an A/C tech do a proper health check, as that will include pulling a vacuum and refilling with the right/book amount of gas. I'd be surprised if that era of korean car didn't have arctic A/C when new, so may be that simple. That said also worth eyeballing the condenser(and cabin pollen filter for blockage!) to see it isn't covered in fly corpses or other grot.

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10 hours ago, somewhatfoolish said:

If it's a keeper it's worth having an A/C tech do a proper health check, as that will include pulling a vacuum and refilling with the right/book amount of gas. I'd be surprised if that era of korean car didn't have arctic A/C when new, so may be that simple. That said also worth eyeballing the condenser(and cabin pollen filter for blockage!) to see it isn't covered in fly corpses or other grot.

I'm not sure what the long term plan is to be honest. It's a survivor so it does warrant some money being spent on it. But at the same time I do fancy changing to something else which is more suited to my needs.

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Another Santa Fe update. During my winter commuting I noticed that my mirrors we not clearing in the cold weather. I assumed that was because I didn't have heated mirrors. However when I popped the passenger side mirror glass off I found to my surprise a heating element! A quick test with the infra red thermometer showed that the passenger side was working as intended, the drivers side was not. They should both turn on when the heated rear window is active.

A quick strip down of the driver side mirror revealed badly corroded contacts on the 12 volt feed to the heating element. A quick clean up and hurrah it now works!

Obligatory video update and click-bait thumbnail below: 

 

 

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3 hours ago, 2flags said:

This seems to be a great motor. You need to keep it as you will not find anything else for what you paid for it, 😁 Okay, it may be a little thirsty but when you consider the fact that you have zero depreciation on it the running costs are minimal. 

This!

Exactly, it owes me very little and I quite enjoy driving it. There is a smugness about sitting in traffic next to a £70k BMW knowing that I'm just as comfy as the BMW driver 🙂

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Cambelt interval appears to be 60k / 6 years.

I normally say to go by mileage as that's the work done by the belt. Although age does of course come into it as with any rubber component. 

A tricky one but I'd suggest at 5 years overdue it might be worth considering a change not in the immediate future but at the same time don't wait until it reaches the 60k! 

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  • Blake's Den changed the title to Free car - Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7 V6 rescued - I can see clearly now the clouds have gone!

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