The Santa Fe is a well-equipped and pleasant car-based SUV that rides comfortably and quietly. It also has a refined powertrain and a nicely finished cabin. Handling is not particularly agile, though secure. Further, weight takes a toll on acceleration and fuel economy, plus interior volume is less roomy than it might appear to be on the outside. A tip-up in government rollover tests is cause for concern.
Alerts
There are 3 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Reliability

Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how used vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system.

Overall Reliability
Most Common Trouble Spots
Common Trouble Spot
Common Trouble Spot
The 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe has been recalled 3 times by NHTSA. View Recalls
Research Years * Redesign year
Worse Better
00
01*
02
03
04
05
06
07*
08
09
10
11
12
13*
14
15
16
17
18
19*
Overall Reliability Verdict
NA
NA
NA
NA
POTENTIAL TROUBLE SPOTS
Engine Major
NA
NA
NA
NA
Engine Minor
NA
NA
NA
NA
Engine Cooling
NA
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Major
NA
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Minor
NA
NA
NA
NA
Drive System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Fuel System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Electric System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Climate System
NA
NA
NA
NA
Suspension
NA
NA
NA
NA
Brakes
NA
NA
NA
NA
Exhaust
NA
NA
NA
NA
Paint/Trim
NA
NA
NA
NA
Body Integrity
NA
NA
NA
NA
Body Hardware
NA
NA
NA
NA
Power Equipment
NA
NA
NA
NA
In-car Electronics
NA
NA
NA
NA
Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey for about 420,000 vehicles, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how 2000 through 2019 vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system. NA indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.

Learn more about car Reliability.

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2004 Hyundai Santa Fe owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"paint deteriorated on exterior vertical separation piece between front and rear windows."

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Rubber trim around the front hood"

Philip R., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"My car's paint looks horrible, but it gets me where I need to go"

Anonymous, TN (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"Clear coat began peeling off of roof, hood and tops of fenders. Underlying paint began fading, too"

Tom S., IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Under coat is showing"

Larry R., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"In a few spots the paint is starting to get faded. I wax the vehicle religiously so I assume its just the age of the paint. The vehicle is parked outside and exposed to the elements so I guess it's to be expected. Still love it none the less."

Wayne W., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"My paint is in horrible condition, the clear coat has peeled off in many areas and it is continuing to curl and break off. I've seen a number of Hyundai's with bad paint issues. I spent several years in Colorado with it and it was after I came back to CA that it seemed to start happening."

Bonnie B., CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"The clear coat on my Santa Fe started cracking awhile back but this last year the whole vehicle looks horrible. It is just coming off in huge areas cracking and peeling."

Anonymous, CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Large ares where the paint has worn away"

Anonymous, TX (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Clearcoat is peeling on the hood, fenders and roof, exposing the paint underneath which is now fading. The dealer and manufaturer refuse to accept this is a defect. I have never had any vehicle, regardless of age, have this problem. And I have see"

Art A., NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Paint is peeling on the hood, under the racks on top of vehicle. Sides of SUV look good"

Victor M., VA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"drivers side paint peeling"

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Paint is peeling, fading and cracking off of outside mirrors and back door handles"

Mark L., WA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"paint is chipping, and fading in many areas"

Frank G., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

"Clear coat started peeling off. Leaving base coat unprotected and dull. Needs a complete paint job!"

Anonymous, IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"the color of the car is red and it is just starting to fade in a few places"

Alfred R., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Pewter Gray: The paint on the hood and sides of the vehicle is down to the primer. The rails between the windows on the sides of the vehicle are rusted. The paint has severely faded, chalked, cracked and peeled the last two years"

Kathryn S., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"paint is fading, cracking, fading"

Anonymous, AZ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"paint flaking on side view mirrors and on hood"

Anonymous, CT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"actual fading and peeling started 3 years ago"

Anonymous, AZ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

"the paint is oxidizing on the top and edges making the car appear to be in much worse shape than it is. it is ugly and appears to be in poor repair"

Anonymous, CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)

"Paint is faded over much of the top and sides of the car and has chipped off on the side mirrors. There is one rust spot on the passenger door. This car does sit in the driveway in the sun. It will be expensive to fix the rust and paint"

Gordon D., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)

"clear coat peeling from all sheet metal."

Anonymous, BC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"The clear coat on the paint is peeling off."

C A., AR (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Rust

"rust is around the rear wheel well"

Philip R., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"Rust problem on rear fenders behind the rear wheels"

Anonymous, IA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"I have rust spot drive side rear quarter panel"

Philip R., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"The coating on the trim around the rear passenger windows has worn away, exposing the metal underneath and causing it to rust. The dealer and manufacturer have refused to address or acknowledge this is a defect"

Art A., NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Both the left & right sides of rear body. Rust on rear of wheel opening. (lowest bottom) Almost as if moisture gathered inside the well & stayed there. I've seen the same areas on all Santa Fe's, every where I travel"

Margaret W., IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)

"the bolt that holds the spare tire in place underneath car has rusted and unable to hold spare tire in place"

Anonymous, PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Spots of rust on door, not worth fixing due to the high mileage and age of vehicle"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"rust above both rear tires in wheel well"

Ken S., IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"There is no main body rust. The issue with rust is on the dividers between the windows"

Kathryn S., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"rust spots above both rear wheel wells on rear quarter panels"

Anonymous, CT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"One spot on the back passenger door at the base of the window. The paint is still covering the rust but you can see it buckling"

Gordon D., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)

"back wipe rust"

Normand R., QC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Ball joints

"Ball joint rotted right through and caused the wheel to fall off."

Robert M., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)

"Boot degraded/cracked and grease started getting contaminated, stiffening the movement. Replacement of the axle resolved it."

Marla H., MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Power steering leaks

"Nothing to add."

John H., UT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"After a repair, the splash guard was not replaced. When we drove into a puddle, the power steering failed. When the car dried out, it was fine. The car is very hard to steer without powe steering."

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"Power steering fluid leaking"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Leak was discovered because of a noise I heard"

Anonymous, CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Purchased with problem mi 108441 - turned out to be heavy leakage. Used 2 part stop leak which as completely stopped the leak for now. May need to replace rack & pump at some point"

John B., CO (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Had a leaky hose that became a broken hose after it was inspected, and it needed to be replaced. Was without car for 3 days"

David S., MN (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"PS pump and metal line needed replacing. Pump gasket dried out and cracked, creating noise/leak, and line was corroded and cracked."

Marla H., MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Power steering pumps and hoses

"Power steering lines leaked within 6 months of repair"

Robert M., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)

"We first detected problems when the system began to whine which comes from low fluid problem. It was determined that the pump was worn and was replaced. Later, it was also discovered there were leaks in a hose and the reservoir."

John H., UT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Replaced leaking hose"

Ken S., OH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"cannot repair the leaking power steering"

Anonymous, AZ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"Sudden and catastrophic failure of power steering hose"

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)

"power steering line ruptured"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Shocks or struts

"normal wear and tear"

Anonymous, IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"needed replacing but feel with mileage not out of ordinary"

Frank G., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

"shocks &struts diminished in function"

Robert D., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Springs or torsion bars

"Very poor suspension both front springs were broken and had to be replaced."

Robert M., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)
Steering linkage (includes rack and pinion)

"replaced twice"

Anonymous, TX (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Tire wear is uneven

"normal wear and tear"

Anonymous, IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)
Wheel bearings

"wheel bearing wore out left front did not replace right front"

Robert D., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Both left and right wheel bearings needed to be replaced with the left one failing while under warranty due to manufacturing issues."

Anonymous, AZ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Clock

"The clock works of and on now"

Anonymous, UT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Would not work"

Anonymous, OH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"intermittent brakelight"

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"Brake lights would not work"

Anonymous, MO (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Left Tail light keeps failing. Don't know why"

Joe S., SC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Gauges

"Engine tachometer would stop working from time to time. Dealer traced it to an electrical problem requiring a new electrical harness"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Headlights

"Foggy lenses; had both cleaned numerous times"

George H., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Both headlights went out at the same time. My mechanic thought that was very odd. They seem to be working fine now"

Anonymous, UT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"headlights often quit working after a few weeks. I've been told it's an electrical issue that's very expensive to diagnose and fix"

Mark L., WA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"The alarm that tells you that you left your headlights on malfunctioned, and headlights were left on in the airport parking lot. Car was dead when returned from trip"

Sherri B., OH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS)
Interior lights

"All lights went out on the control panel, below the cassette/radio (fan, air direction & heat knobs) a few years after purchase.Not covered by warranty & quoted a very expensive repair, due to labor costs. (pulling the dash board out) Never repaired"

Margaret W., IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)
Keyless entry

"Remote would not open door, and electrical door locks from inside would not work. Short in junction box"

Anonymous, OH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Warning lights

"Problems with 102 sensors"

Anonymous, WI (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)

"This again was traced to an electrical problem requiring replacement of the electrical harness"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Wiper motor or washer

"windshield washer works sometimes"

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Accessory belts or pulleys

"had to replace alternator belt, timing belt, accessory belts, water pump"

Amy L., WI (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Engine computer

"engine light and airbag emergency, go on and off, if I hit a pot hole.Had car checked and serviced, get issue solved, hit another pot hole , then lights go back on"

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Engine knock or ping

"N/A"

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"even after having full scheduled maintenance by Hyundai, the car idles rough, bought back to dealer and another car place, no one can find why car idles rough"

Anonymous, CT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Fuel leaks

"Fuel leaked...but Hyundai paid for the replacement of the tank"

Anonymous, SC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"Had to replace the gas tank due to leaking"

Ken S., OH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"there is a leak in my fuel tank"

Anonymous, PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"had to replace the gas tank as it rusted through even though gas tank cover looked new"

Amy L., WI (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"We live in the Northeastern area of the U.S. and because of the snow and salt the fuel tank suffered from rust to the point that it started to corrode and leaked gas fumes in the SUV resulting in the fuel tank being replaced"

Tony B., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Oil leaks

"N/A"

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Comes from the top of motor"

Anonymous, KY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"gasket leak"

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"leaks near the front tires due to rough road conditions"

W L., CT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

A/C compressor

"The compressor failed and had to be replaced. System was cleaned and hoses were replaced"

David C., AZ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Compressor seals failed"

Cindy W., TX (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"The air conditioner stopped working and won't recharge."

Anonymous, PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)

"The AC compressor died completely and we had to have it replaced"

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Had to be replaced"

William R., KS (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

"Blown bearings which contaminated the whole system. Expensive repair for a vehicle that may not be worth fixing; still debating to fix or trade vehicle."

Anonymous, ON (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 3.5-L V6)

"Started to leak refrigerant from a tiny hole."

Anonymous, MO (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Compressor stopped working, needs to be replaced at a cost of $1100, not worth it."

Lisa G., WA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Condenser

"Leaking too much and had to be replaced. Also had to replace the radiator in the past 3 years"

Pete V., NE (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"poorly designed drain system"

Anonymous, MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Electrical failure

"Fan motor goes on with system turned off"

Anonymous, NV (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Evaporator

"condensation build up, stops cooling air"

Anonymous, MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Normal routine brake wear

"Had the rotors and brake pads replace per the dealer"

Anonymous, MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Just regular driving, nothing special"

Tony S., GA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)
Parking brake

"We live in the Northeastern area of the U.S. and because of the snow and salt the parking brake has rusted to the point that it is cheaper not to use it rather than have it replaced"

Tony B., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Premature brake wear

"Brake pedal has always felt soft, even after overall by mechanics."

Anonymous, QC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"Seams like the brakes do not last"

Anonymous, NH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Right rear brake wears out quickly down to the screech pad"

Thomas E., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 3.5-L V6)

"Many trips to the Hyundai dealer for brake repairs. Never seemed to get it right. Left rusted, rotted brake parts in place for many years. Finally took the car to a Midas shop. They actually found the problem that the Hyundai dealer either couldn't find or just ignored. Most of the work was performed, conveniently, after the warranty had expired. It wasn't the car, it was the dealer! It's a great car. The car rides better than ever now that Midas made the repairs that the dealer failed to."

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Regular brake failure

"brake lines rusted and had to be replaced"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Rotors

"Had to replace them twice"

Anonymous, NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"Replaced all rotors several roughly every 18,000 miles since car was purchased new"

George H., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"Rotors keep failing"

P C., TX (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Squeaking

"We had the brakes fixed because of LOUD squealing about 1.5 years ago. It would be fine for about a month, and then commence again. The mechanic finally figured out the new rotors had rusted; fortunately, they were still under warranty"

Jayna M., OH (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Locks and latches

"The rear hatch handle broke twice, as well the left rear door handle."

Anonymous, QC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"Latches were all replaced. Due to latches started to peal, and become sharp. My granddaughter hand got cut badly from latches"

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"driver side lock sticks will not open all the time have to use manual key to get in to car. have to lock manual with hand on button because push button to lock all doors does not work for driver door all the time"

Anonymous, AZ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)
Sunroof

"It shattered"

Larry R., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.3-L 4 Cyl)
Tailgate, hatch or trunk

"I have gone through several pair of hydraulic lifts on the back tailgate and window, I am now noticing that I am having problems again with the window not staying up."

Bonnie B., CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)
Windows

"One window won't work from driver control but does work at local control"

Ken S., IL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"Drivers window motor - second fail in 5 years. Window goes down, but will not go back up."

Simone K., FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"There's a water leak but I find where it is coming from"

Anonymous, CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

"anti-freeze leaks"

Anonymous, FL (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"it seems that within a 8-10 month period most of the window and a large part of the door weather stripping gave up"

Anonymous, CA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"weather stripping needed replaceing around front window"

W L., CT (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)
Squeaks or rattles

"upon starting, a rattling sound comes from the engine area. after driving, a short distance, it disapears. two mechanics could not locate the source, but the car is safe to drive"

Edward P., MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)

"Normal old age squeaks"

Anonymous, KY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Part of having an older - used car. A little noisy but quieter than some other older cars we have had"

John B., CO (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"The passages to the system were clogged causing the computer to report a bad EGR. Had to have the passages cleaned but this was not discovered until the chip was replaced twice"

Anonymous, NC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Erg failed"

Kelly A., BC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.7-L V6)

"Had to replace both catalytic converters. Failure assumed to be caused by faulty spark plugs/wiring allowing raw fuel to pass through into the exhaust system."

Anonymous, PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Fuel pump

"leak in fuel line"

Anonymous, SC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

"oxygen sensor mounted on catalytic converter failed because of electrical short"

Anonymous, NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"2 or 3 sensors cause engine light to come on; had to replace 1-3 sensors"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Catalytic converter

"all of them failed"

Albert Z., NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)

"Elements of first two converters ending up in the third converter, causing a fail of the entire system, and a loss of power. Cost to repair was almost as much as the value of the car"

Glenn C., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Had to be replaced"

C A., AR (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 3.5-L V6)
Loose/rattling heat shield

"heat shield rusted out and dropped onto drive shaft. Replacement is taking a long time"

Anonymous, IA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 3.5-L V6)
Muffler

"Muffler was causing loud noise and needed to be replaced due to age-related normal wear and tear"

Anonymous, NJ (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

CD player

"stopped working"

Anonymous, MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

"The player will not release a CD, so the player cannot be used. The radio continues to function normally. A Hyundai dealer has advised that the entire radio module must be replaced, at a large cost"

Anonymous, BC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

"The CD player failed to eject a CD; and the dealer was unable to repair the radio/CD module to fix the problem. I purchased a new module at an independent audio store."

Anonymous, BC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Radio

"The radio had poor reception and station discrimination. I replaced the radio by purchasing a new one at an independent audio dealer."

Anonymous, BC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)
Steering wheel controls

"buttons fell off"

Anonymous, TX (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Rough shifting

"A loud noise on the left side of the vehicle when I either go forward or put in reverse"

Anonymous, NV (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)
Slipping transmission

"The automatic transmission was slipping and loosing fluid. I used a 2 part "transmission fix" to keep it running. I have used this 2 separate times and it is holding for the moment - after a number of months"

Anonymous, CO (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"I hear a loud knock or bang on the left side when I either back up or go forward"

Anonymous, NV (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)

"The vehicle jumps through two or three surges when put in drive. Like it is bucking then it smooths out"

Thomas E., NY (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 3.5-L V6)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Engine rebuild or replacement

"It 6 weeks to get the engine replacec!! Bureuacacy!"

Anonymous, SC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"Engine failed catastrophically on the road"

Hugh H., IN (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2.7-L V6)
Timing belt or chain

"The Timing belt needed to be replaced as well as the idler pulley - was causing pinging and performance issues. They also replaced the water pump and belts"

Anonymous, CO (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Base 2.3-L 4 Cyl)

"The timing belt did not fail. It was replaced as preventitive measure"

Anonymous, AB (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

"Alternator location necessitated major labor to change due to ridiculous location under engine. Engineering nightmare"

Allen A., MA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 3.5-L V6)
Spark plugs or wires failure

"Ignition system problems. Because of the way the engine is mounted, simply changing spark plugs is a $800.00 project."

Anonymous, SC (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.7-L V6)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Driveshaft or axle

"Rear axle seal broke causing vibration/noise in rear"

Robert M., PA (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe)
Electrical failure

"cluster unit quit working. Does not show mileage or speed"

Anonymous, NV (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

"Started giving trouble after warming, losing power and erratic revving. Mechanic diagnosed it as transmission is shot due to burnt transmission fluid and signs of metal flaking in the fluid."

Anonymous, MD (2004 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2.7-L V6)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Compare 2004 Models

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This score shows whether the model had more or fewer problems overall than the average model of that year, calculated from the total number of problems reported by subscribers in all 17 trouble spots.
Recalls
PROVIDED BY
SUSPENSION:FRONT:SPRINGS:COIL SPRINGS
Jul 18 2014
If the front coil spring fractures due to corrosion it could cause the coil spring to make contact with the tire, possibly puncturing the tire and increasing the risk of a vehicle crash.
Summary:
Hyundai Motor Company (Hyundai) is recalling certain model Year 2001-2006 Santa Fe vehicles manufactured from March 31, 2000, through February 15, 2006, that are registered and operated, or which were originally sold and registered, in the following 20 ¿salt belt" states and the District of Columbia: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. The affected vehicles may experience front coil spring corrosion from road salt, causing the coil spring to fracture and make contact with the tire.
What should you do:
Hyundai will notify owners, and dealers will inspect and if necessary replace the coil spring, free of charge. The recall began on October 24, 2014. Owners may contact Hyundai customer service at 1-800-633-5151. Hyundai's number for this recall is 124.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 14V435000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 271773
SERVICE BRAKES, HYDRAULIC:ANTILOCK/TRACTION CONTROL/ELECTRONIC LIMITED SLIP:CONTROL UNIT/MODULE
Mar 16 2004
IF AN EXTENDED STOPPING DISTANCE OCCURS, IT COULD RESULT IN A CRASH.
Summary:
ON CERTAIN SPORT UTILITY VEHICLES EQUIPPED WITH 3.5 LITER V-6 ENGINES, 4-WHEEL DRIVE AND ANTILOCK BRAKING SYSTEMS (ABS), IF THE BRAKE PEDAL IS DEPRESSED AT SPEEDS BETWEEN 3 AND 12 MPH WHEN THE BRAKE PAD FRICTION SURFACES ARE WET, A VIBRATION MAY OCCUR BETWEEN THE BRAKE DISCS AND PADS CAUSING ABS SENSOR ELECTRONIC SIGNAL NOISE TO DEVELOP. AT SPEEDS BELOW 5 MPH, THE ABS SENSOR SIGNAL NOISE MAY CAUSE THE ABS ELECTRONIC CONTROL UNIT (ECU) TO ACTIVATE THE ABS, EXTENDING THE STOPPING DISTANCE.
What should you do:
DEALERS WILL REPROGRAM THE ABS ECU. OWNER NOTIFICATION BEGAN ON MARCH 24, 2004. OWNERS SHOULD CONTACT HYUNDAI AT 1-800-633-5151.
For more information:
HYUNDAI RECALL NO. 065. CUSTOMERS CAN ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S AUTO SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 04V131000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 17401
EQUIPMENT:OTHER:LABELS
Dec 18 2003
THE TIRE PRESSURE LABELS DO NOT CONTAIN THE INFORMATION REQUIRED BY THE STANDARD.
Summary:
CERTAIN SPORT UTILITY VEHICLES FAIL TO COMPLY WITH THE REQUIREMENTS OF FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 120, "TIRE SELECTION AND RIMS FOR MOTOR VEHICLES OTHER THAN PASSENGER CARS."
What should you do:
OWNERS WILL BE PROVIDED WITH A CORRECT LABEL AND INSTALLATION INSTRUCTIONS. OWNER NOTIFICATION BEGAN ON OCTOBER 29, 2003. OWNERS SHOULD CONTACT HYUNDAI AT 1-800-633-5151.
For more information:
HYUNDAI RECALL NO. 064.CUSTOMERS CAN ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S AUTO SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 03V520000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 249309
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