Woes of an aging Hyundai

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69
Location
NH
Thread starter
Vehicle in question is my fiancée's '05 Sonata She has owned since new, maintained either by an independent or myself. 130K, runs and drives fine, (surprisingly) body and interior in good shape Replacement is not an option at this point. First issue is an electrical issue that has gotten progressively worse. Power locks intermittently lock/unlock on their own, worse in cold weather. Sometimes closing the door hard triggers it, sometimes not. Makes for a real challenge at times as you can unlock it, and it will lock you out instantly. Clock also has become intermittent, but does not lose time. Battery is a 3yr old dealer replacement battery installed by someone other than myself. Second issue, and one that I am more worried about. Due to her complete refusal to wash the car, the front subframe is getting tender. I have been keeping an eye on it and have been surprised twice now that it had not been caught in the State Inspection process. Doing an oil change yesterday, I tapped on a portion of the subframe and the end of my ratchet went right through, creating a clean hole. Foolish me, I tapped on another portion and created another hole. I did not think to take pictures and the car is not here at the moment. Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 
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35,852
Location
ME
Subframes can be changed-- I used to do this all the time with saturn s-series. The door locks are probably a pinched wire in the door hinge, or a grimy switch. I'd pull the fuse if you don't want to put the work in.
 
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3,275
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
Replacement needs to be an option. That subframe issue is telling me the car is on borrowed time, or past time. One big pothole and its done, never mind what that corrosion does to crashworthiness.
 
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1,776
Location
Kingston
We replaced a few subframe/engine cradles in the garages I've worked at. It's $1000 repair but cheaper than a new vehicle. If he rest of it isn't rusted out it may be worth doing.
 
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4,634
Location
Suburban Washington DC
Originally Posted by caprice_2nv
We replaced a few subframe/engine cradles in the garages I've worked at. It's $1000 repair but cheaper than a new vehicle. If he rest of it isn't rusted out it may be worth doing.
If the subframe is so rusted out that it requires replacement, isn't the body it's attached to going to be just as bad?
 
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4,112
Location
WA
Originally Posted by atikovi
Originally Posted by caprice_2nv
We replaced a few subframe/engine cradles in the garages I've worked at. It's $1000 repair but cheaper than a new vehicle. If he rest of it isn't rusted out it may be worth doing.
If the subframe is so rusted out that it requires replacement, isn't the body it's attached to going to be just as bad?
At minimum the drivetrain and suspension should be inspected, front and rear. A rusted out subframe as is being described, can be a safety problem. But before deciding to replace it i would inspect everything else, including the rear end. Replacing a subframe is not particularly hard. You just have to be sure to properly support everything. It's something you can do if you have/have access to the necessary tools.
 
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Messages
35,852
Location
ME
The worst issue I have with switching subframes is getting the exhaust apart in a way that it can be put back together later. That, and the captive nuts inside the unibody frame rails get bent if one uses a rattle gun. Start the old bolts out nice and easy, by hand. There are plenty of cars with good floorboards and bad subframes. IDK about your hyundai, but the way they seal up and zinc-coat car bodies vs black-painted subframes is sometimes not comparable.
 
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10,000
Location
Waco, TX
Originally Posted by eljefino
That, and the captive nuts inside the unibody frame rails get bent if one uses a rattle gun. Start the old bolts out nice and easy, by hand.
Even doing that, I have never had good luck getting them out.
Originally Posted by atikovi
If the subframe is so rusted out that it requires replacement, isn't the body it's attached to going to be just as bad?
Sometimes it is just as bad, yes
 
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4,112
Location
WA
Originally Posted by Nitronoise
My Sons 03 Santa FE had the subframe replaced by Hyundai up in Minnon a recall /TSB you might want to check into it with the dealership
The recall didn't effect '05 Sonata's.
 
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1,018
Location
Minnesota
I'm in the rust belt and have an '05 Elantra bought years ago from the original local owner. At purchase the mechanical maintenance was up to date or early done by the selling dealer. There was just a tad of light rust started in a few spots, so each spring I spend a couple hours with a wire brush and the Rustoleum rust converter. So far, so good and the mechanicals are also doing well at 138k miles. A little time with preventative can be well worth it. Lots of cars up here can look pretty good until you get underneath.
 
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4,112
Location
WA
Originally Posted by Danno
Replacement needs to be an option. That subframe issue is telling me the car is on borrowed time, or past time. One big pothole and its done, never mind what that corrosion does to crashworthiness.
If he's able to punch a hole just by tapping on it, it's not a question of if but when. Pray it gives out while parked in the garage and not on the highway.
 
Messages
69
Location
NH
Thread starter
Thanks to all that have replied so far. After some research Hyundai still sells the subframe. Anything from a yard is likely to be junk. I intend on farming out this job, as this is beyond the scope of my skills having limited time to do it. Even with the cost, still cheaper than a decent used car that she would agree to drive.
 
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35,852
Location
ME
Good idea! Almost always cheaper to keep it, and you'll be happy you got through this vehicular midlife crisis a year from now. This sort of job is a 7/10 on the frustration factor.
 
Messages
4,112
Location
WA
Originally Posted by Fifth87
Thanks to all that have replied so far. After some research Hyundai still sells the subframe. Anything from a yard is likely to be junk. I intend on farming out this job, as this is beyond the scope of my skills having limited time to do it. Even with the cost, still cheaper than a decent used car that she would agree to drive.
Smart man and nothing wrong with having a shop do it and get under there and look at the whole underside. That salts a biyach, eh? Glad they don't use it in these parts.
 
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Messages
588
Location
Raleigh NC
Originally Posted by Fifth87
First issue is an electrical issue that has gotten progressively worse. Power locks intermittently lock/unlock on their own, worse in cold weather. Sometimes closing the door hard triggers it, sometimes not. Makes for a real challenge at times as you can unlock it, and it will lock you out instantly.
As though some prankster was inside pushing the button. smile Try unplugging the switch pod(s) that lock/unlock them from the inside and see if that cures it. I bet you have a broken switch.
 
Messages
35,852
Location
ME
Originally Posted by MrMoody
Try unplugging the switch pod(s) that lock/unlock them from the inside and see if that cures it. I bet you have a broken switch.
True, but most power window switches are like a 3-way circuit with a "floating" +/- and removing any switch could render things inoperable. May still have diagnostic value. And as it is, they sound pretty broken anyway.
 
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