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Discussion Starter #1
Newbie here guys,

First time owner of a recently purchased Kia Optima 2003, 25k miles. Has everything except leather. I bought a 4 cyl because of the gas, the Kia because of the price and generally positive reviews on the net. I found this site after my purchase and the na sayers have me a little nervous about my purchase.

No problems so far, 26 mpg in highway/city combined.

I'm looking for other Optima owners that may be able to offer advice regarding maintainence. I've always done my own oil, etc (even rebuilt an engine or two over the years, when time was not a factor).

Do a lot of people change their own timing belts? / do moderate work on their Optima?

Are there any web sites that can provide info pertaining to maintaining my purchase?

Anyone have any experience with KIA dealerships in Alabama, specifically Birmingham Alabama?

THNX guys/girls!
 

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2007 Optima, 2007 Sorento
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714 Posts
Welcome to the forum Frank! I own a '02 Optima LX-V6 and consider it one of the best cars I have ever owned and driven. People who are critics of Kia (and its sister Hyundai) are still looking back to earlier years when both brands had a lot of problems. Remember how Honda and Toyota were made fun of and considered crap by Americans? Well, I do. Give Kia another 3-5 years of building upon its solid model line with continued quality and I think Kia's reputation will shine well.
My Optima is very nice and run excellent. Quality built. Sure there will always be minor details Kia can improve upon each year and it has with the Optima since my purchase. I am extremely pleased with my car. No regrets whatsoever.

It is critical that you find a good dealership you can build a trust relationship with. I worked for Nissan years ago and know the ins and outs of dealer operations so when I found my dealership I married it! :) I have maintained it only at the dealer since I had problems with oil filters with those "fast serve oil change" joints. Maintain your car according to the service schedule faithfully Frank. Most routine servicing you can probably do but I wouldn't tackle a timing belt change unless you really know what you are doing.

My dealer has been great in alerting me of routine service dates and providing discount coupons off those services. I walk in there recently and the key people all know me by name. Amazing to me considering staff come and go at many dealerships but not at mine. I'm very lucky I guess to have confidence in my dealership. I wish I could recommend one to you in Alabama but don't know your area.

Be proud of your purchase, Frank. The Optima is a great car and should serve you well for many years to come.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
THNX for the reply. I'm enjoying the ride, features, etc. It's really a nice car that meets my "economy" minded attitude these days.

Let me know if you have any other "KIA" links that might help.

THNX
 

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Welcome to the site. You made an excellent choice. :thumbsup:
I have a 04 Optima LX 2.4L. I have had it for about a year now. I have almost 9k miles on it and have had no problems with it at all. I get about 26 mpg mixed driving. Check out the link below. Just fill in the appropriate info about your car and up will come info on what you are suppose to do at that milage and it also tells you if you have or have had any recalls on your car.
Congrats on the Opima!
Click Here!!!!!!!
 

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2005 Kia Magentis
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Hi Frank, I just bought a new Magentis too, I dont think you should have any regrets for getting that car. And I also think that you should get your maintenance done with the dealer. Today I went there for a free alignement and the ppl there know me by name already and they are really nice ppl and dont over charge on service and labor. The warranty covers everything on your car so your better off letting them work on it. When they find something wrong they will replace it as soon as possible for free. For the mpg I did 25 mpg with a mix of town and highway.

Congrats on your new ride!
 

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2004 Kia Optima
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Welcome to KIA-forums.com! Please enjoy your stay! :thumbsup:
Congratz on the purchase.. hopefully you'll be happy with it just like how we all are. I know I am.. now about the maintanance on my car... hmm :p

OH, btw... YOU DID GOOD! :57:
 

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Hello Newbie, welcome to the forum....We bought a leftover 04 Optima w/v6 and it has everything but leather seats as well. It now has 1100 miles on the clock. We had the dealer install the weather guard on each window and tinted the glass. I bought a sun roof wind deflector from the dealer and installed it. We really love to drive this Kia. You done good.... :D
 

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Discussion Starter #8
THNX for the replies. First "gremlin" showed up yesterday while driving. Rubber weather seal around the windshield on the passenger side "flew" up while driving down the interstate. Not a biggie. I stopped, reseated it and tucked it back under the side molding like the other side.

Hope there are no leaks! :)

On other brands a car the warranty has to be transferred to the new owner. When I bought the car from the KIA dealer here in Birmingham they said nothing about a "transfer". "Just bring it in". Does that sound right?

I had planned to stop by and let them verify I tucked the seal back in correctly.

Still looking for another KIA owner in the Birmingham Al. area. Wanting input as to the two dealers here in town, Bill Byrd KIA and Sierra KIA.

Still love the car!
 

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I once owned a GMC Sierra and thats the way it was with me. All I did was bring it in when I had a problem with it............which was like every other day.lol
Yeah it would be a good idea to bring it in to have them look at the rubber seal on the windshield.
 

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2005 Kia Spectra
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go to streetkiaz.com. They recently went down and lost a lot of info. They had some really great info, especially on do it your self stuff and it is slowly being rebuilt. Kia-speed2 is another site. KFXperformance.com is a webiste that sells aftermarket parts for Kias and has a lot fo good stuff. I bought a CAI from them.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, had my first experience with a KIA dealer (Bill Byrd KIA) in Birmingham Alabama. My wife stopped by to have the window seal fixed and a fastner that held two pieces of the front / side bumper together (on the bottom).

They repaired both while she waited (even paged a tech), in and out in thirty minutes!

Kudos to Bill Byrd KIA. Hope we do not have to visit often, but if we do I hope all the experiences are like yesterday.
 

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2004 Kia Optima
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Great to hear that you've had a wonderful experience with your dealership. I for one need to head out there to have somethings checked.. so we'll see what happens.. heh.
 

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I gotta go to the dealer too. Not for the Optima though. Need a new rear view mirror for the Spectra. I know they wont give me a hard time. They will just replace it.
 

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2004 Kia Optima
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Well you're lucky.. since you're bought your car through a KIA dealer.. they know you.. me.. I bought mine through enterprise.. so i don't have a 'dealer' persay.. I'll have to shop around. <_<
 
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