santa fe won't start, what is most likely wrong?

Asked by May 14, 2007 at 05:50 PM about the 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My car worked fine this morning, then wouldn't start later.  Turns over fine but won't catch. Gas was low, but I put more in just in case, still will not start. Any suggestions?

24 Answers


Hi Bond! Here's a no-start troubleshooting guide to help you narrow down some of teh possibilities. Hope it helps, good luck!

316 out of 316 people think this is helpful.

i recomend to check the fuel pressure and replace the fuel filter, cos it seems like a fuel problem

38 out of 38 people think this is helpful.

I have just replaced the heater core in my 04 Santa Fe w/ the v6 2.7L and I am having the same issue, no start...ran fine last night and now it turns over but wont start. I think that coolant leaking from the heater core may have damaged the PCM as it sits directly under the heater box in the dash. It is either that or the fuel system, or the crankshaft sensor...will post more as soon as I diagnose. good luck!

25 out of 25 people think this is helpful.

checkingthe crank sensor is a good idea but there is also a fuel cutoff switch under the hood that may have been tripped. its along one of the fenders( i tink the drivers side. doesnt happen often byt its another thing to check. if its tripped it will click when pressed(theres a little button on top of it)

50 out of 50 people think this is helpful.

After removing the pcm, found residual coolant in the circuit board of the pcm and the tranny module. Disassembled, cleaned, and reinstalled...started right up. Died finally after about an hour of running and now I am replacing the pcm. I think I may write Hyundai a strongly worded letter regarding their piss poor design placement of the pcm/ tranny mod. Directly under the heater box. I know this doesn't happen very often, but if it does happen and you don't have warranty you're looking at 1200 for the heater core replacement and 1000 for the pcm/ tranny mod. Replacement...its a rip off.

12 out of 12 people think this is helpful.

Hi I have a Hyndai Santa Fe 2006. I took it yesterday to get aligned, and the technician told me that my car had a sluggish performance. They recommended a computerized evaluation of $80. Is this worth it? How costly could a repair for something like this be?

22 out of 22 people think this is helpful.

My 03 Hyundai santé Fe wont even turn over but, my lights come on and so does the radio, when I flicked my high beam that was even bright. Why wont my car start?

313 out of 313 people think this is helpful.

Just gotta WONDER why a 7 YEAR OLD QUESTION (seven YEAR old) - got 4 answers 2 years ago ; another answer 1 year ago ; and another answer 3 months ago ?????........ You think bond has been following his question since May 14 ,2007 ?.......and looky - it was expert LouB that first answered 7 long years ago (and good ole Lou is still in the top 14 ????

17 out of 17 people think this is helpful.

Hello, my Santa Fe Y2006 has this same problem. New glow plugs, currently changed crankshaft position sensor, battery in good condition, starter spins perfectly but no starting when cold (in the morning). Possible to start only after spraying of starting fluid directly to air filter outlet. Once started it will run all day with no problems. Last winter it was driven perfect without any problems it just suddenly appeared in this winter... Have somebody found the problem yet? If yes please let me know adresu @ gmail . com. It's blowing my mind.

94 out of 94 people think this is helpful.

My 2008 hyundia won't start when it did I could not get it out of park and I shut it of and it would not start again it will not even turn over

74 out of 74 people think this is helpful.

2005 santa fe 2.7L why is there no spark to the plug

56 out of 56 people think this is helpful.

My Santa Fe 2009 was doing the exact same thing (cranks but won't start). It was sporadic so hard to troubleshoot. It did that once every second week but lately it was once a day and last Friday, car would not fire up for 4 hours....We tried changing the crankshaft positioning sensor but still having issues. We found out that the Transponder Antenna needed to be changed as SMARTRA system would not recognize the key from time to time (anti-thief system). If you put in your key in the ignition but without turning all the way, you should see a little light in the dash that has a key icon in it (sometimes its a car with a key icon)... this tells you that the key is recognized and your car should start... if not, the problem is either the transponder antenna or the SMARTRA itself. The code in the computer after failure should be P1690 or P1693 (or both). After changing the antenna piece near the ignition (180$ at the dealer), the icon shows up and car starts every time.... been around 50 times to far and no issues. Hope this helps

23 out of 23 people think this is helpful.

this sounds so similar to whats happening with our 02 santa fe. We only have the key and not a remote battery key just a basic key. No key fob either. It sat for a few months not used and then we charged the battery, it started and drove 7 miles and back. Parked it up again, then two days later...nothing! wouldn't start again, so we purchased a battery and tried it again. Nothing...just sounds like it wasn't to go but wont. It has a funny little bleep bleep bleep alarm sound when you open and shut the drivers door so i wondered if the ignition and anti- theft system are faulty or something....any ideas any one...?

49 out of 49 people think this is helpful.

I just ran into this issue with my neighbors. i verified at the positive terminal of the starter 12 volts were present. i then verified at the signal wire 12 volts were present when key was in the crank position. So i did naturally what any mechanic would do and call a starter. After installing new starter the same thing. WTF over!!!!! I then measured voltage drop on the constant terminal of the starter when cranking and verified a drop from 12.6 to 12.1 volts good. measured voltage drop on both grounds one from engine block to p\s fender well, 12.6 to 12.1. Voltage drop from battery negative cable to fender well the same. what is going on here I said. All connections are clean and all measures are good and unit only has 60,000 miles. For shits and giggles i decided to remove both grounds from the fenders and remove the paint with a piece of sand paper to bare metal and reattach. Unit started with no issues. the paint between the ground cables and terminal ends was too much. Why now after 60,000 miles I have no clue and wish I did.

9 out of 9 people think this is helpful.

I just had my 2010 Santa Fe with a 2 month old battery refuse to start. It would just click-click-click. I tried jumping it to no avail multiple times and ended up getting towed to the dealership. Turns out they have a battery sensor on the negative terminal that can be "damaged easily by mechanical stress", meaning that if it gets bonked or wet it will just fail. When this sensor fails it breaks the circuit to ground, disabling the ability to start the vehicle. My battery was totally good. Works like a champ now with a new sensor. I found nothing about this online when I had the problem and hope to post about it as much as possible to get the word out, so people can get on with their lives. My best guess to fix this in the event it happens to you is to use jumper cables to link the negative terminal of the battery to the frame of the vehicle, as the visible cable that usually connects to ground has this broken sensor in it and does not work.

11 out of 11 people think this is helpful.

My Santa fe 2001 ran all day. came home stopped. 10min later attempted to start but would not start. All cables checard secure. USED JUMPSTART BUT WOULD NOT START.TRIED 2 TIMES WITHOUT SUCCESS. I WILL TRY AGAIN IN AM. ANY QUICK ANSWER.......

45 out of 45 people think this is helpful.

i have a santa fe 2003 wont start .replace fuel pump .crank sensor ,buy an used computer and nothing .check all the relays in the engine compartment and .nothing .dont have injector pulse and dont have ignicion coil voltaje . any ideas who have the same problem

39 out of 39 people think this is helpful.

I have a 2003 sante fe will start but wint stay running. They replaced all wiring and nothing. Next step is fuel pump. Crossing fingers. Bought the car last month drove it for 2days and it wont run.

7 out of 7 people think this is helpful.

Yesterday after driving my Santa Fe 2010 in the moring would not start at lunch time, tank full, battery new. The car turned over but would fire up had RACQ come over couldn't find any problem then towed it from basement carpark to open carpark to be towed next morning. Went to take things out before towing away just thought I would try again and it started no problem. So who knows when computers and electrics are involved but I hope it won't happen again.

16 out of 16 people think this is helpful.

I have a Hyundai Santa Fe 2004 3.5 l.Bought brand new. After some seven years the problems began and from past forty years experience working with different types of vehicles such as V.W. Mini, Peugeot, Datsun, Toyota, GMC etc. this Korean design is by far the worst user-unfriendly vehicle I have worked on. I have had some remarkable answers to prayer for some mechanical issues, but my hands have also been bruised and worn replacing the crank-case sensor, the alternator, and I am now for a week been trying to figure out why it will not start after a trouble free trip back from Columbus to Lima. Sunday December 11 2016. Next day it refused to start up. is it the freezing conditions? General Assessment: A full fuel tank: a strong battery cranking and turning the engine very well. Checked the inertia switch/fuel cut off switch by the right hand strut. Switched relays around. Checked fuses. Sprayed starting fluid into air intake. Checked for In-line spark OK. Crank-case sensor Ok. Tapped fuel tank with wood plank. Monday December 19 - 2 deg. Started up - ran for a while and died. Cranks and cranks, but It will not start. Ice in fuel line? Faulty fuel pump? Filter? Any solutions for Korean Complications? .

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

A car basically needs only two thing to start...fuel and fire. The easiest way to check for fire is to have someone crank the engine and you spray some carb cleaner in to intake manifold..If it does not start check the fuses in the ignition system. If it starts,you have a fuel problem. Check fuel pressure, if pressure is low check fuel regulator, if pressure is good check fuses to fuel injectors. If everything checks good then you have sensor that is preventing the engine from starting.

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

Thanks Alfonso.

Recently had some problems with my car had to have a jump yesterday, guy told me my battery needed to be replaced. I bought a new battery yesterday, car started fine this morning and then all the internal lights went off while driving (clock, radio) and when I parked my car and shut it off it would not start again. Any suggestions?


Any engine check lights? What about the dash lights? Sounds like a sudden lost of power, with a new a battery I would not suspect it's the battery because even with a bad battery the alternator will maintain the electrics until you turn the engine off. Check you alternator...with engine off check battery voltage (make a note of it) start engine and measure the voltage again and compare it to the fisrt reading, if the volatge is about 3 or 4 volts higher then the alternator is good. I have seen NEW batteries fail.

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