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Kia Sorento 2012
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Discussion Starter #1
About a year ago I folded both rear seat backs forward to fit my tools in there. The seat backs are made in two units...a wide one on the left and a narrow one on the left. I was able to release the left one and lock it into the upright position. However, the right side is stuck in the lowered position. When I lift the plastic release handle, I can hear movement down in the hinge area, and I can see a speck of movement in the latch mechanism when I shine a light in there, but it seems to be locked solid.

The fact that I can see a bit of movement and can hear that tells me that the sheathed cable is not broken but the latch itself must be stuck.

Is there a fix for this where I can release the latch and get the seat back to the upright position?

Thanks!
 

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I now drive a 2003 S-10 Had an 03 LX 3.5 Sorento
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I don't know if this will help or not but you could try by pushing down on the seat.
This sometimes relieves the pressure on the latching mechanism so it can release.
 

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Kia Sorento 2012
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. I did try that. It's easy to sit on the seat back and try to get it to move a little, but it is very solid. At first I thought it was completely frozen, but it does move up and down maybe a 16th or 32nd of an inch. Keep the idea coming, guys. I need to get this seat back up as soon as I can and I shudder to think what the dealership would charge me.
 

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Kia released a TSB about this a few years ago. We had a similar problem in that the latch kept sticking when trying to recline. I found that lubricating the hinge mechanism with some 3 in 1 oil helped tremendously. I recall having to remove or pry away some plastic pieces to get access. Sorry, it's been a few years and can't remember the details.

I can't post links yet, the the TSB number is 093 (REV 5, 06/19/2015). I found it on kia.oemdtc.com.
 

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Kia Sorento 2012
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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks, jolt2. Looks like I'm screwed.

Do you have any tips for raising it, even if just one time (meaning I don't mind breaking it because I never have rear passengers).
 

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Kia Sorento 2012
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Discussion Starter #7
Success!

I went out to the car and decided to shake and wiggle the heck out the seat back and after a minute of aggressive shaking and twisting she popped loose.

Come springtime I'll remove the seat completely and do the necessary surgery and lubrication.

Thanks to all for your help.
 

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Sorento 2012
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steambc, I posted more info with a link to KIA rear seat information at the service manual link deal: https://www.kia-forums.com/2011-2013-xm-sorento-forum/335302-those-looking-manuals.html

If you look at a break down of the seat, the release lever is NOT hooked up by a cable so you can pull on it pretty good, except for the plastic handle that could break. I just keep wiggling the back of the seat back and forth as I pull on the release handle. For me, it does release with some effort and I am then able to move the seat back up or down. Some times I worry about breaking the handle but if that happens I will just have to replace both pivots as mine is the 40% seat side that sticks. The 60% (wider) side releases and moves freely like it should. Attached is the actual KIA TSB about the seat problem. It has the replacement parts numbers and service time to replace.

You can find safety recalls, Technical Service Bulletins ( TSB ), picture breakdowns and more from the Alldata deal I posted for $12.95 for one year of use. If you have a lot of paper, time, and printer ink; you can print it all and save it. I did that once for a pickup I had and it took over 700 sheets of paper with double sided printing. I would just pay the money now but that up to you.
 

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Kia Sorento 2012
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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks jolt2. I did reply to that thread and mentioned I am going to order. I need to find out if I have the GDI or the MPI engine. I'm not sure how to find out but I will. Bought it used.

Thanks for going to all the trouble to help. I greatly appreciate it. Not sure if you saw my post above... I shook the heck out of it and got it to unlock and got the seat back to vertical. It looks like they've been having this problem since 2011... hard to believe they didn't redesign for 2012.

Much appreciated!
 

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Sorento 2012
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I need to find out if I have the GDI or the MPI engine. I'm not sure how to find out but I will. Bought it used.
The VIN number will tell if it is a GDI or MPI engine. It is the 8th digit in the VIN number. The number can depend on the year of the KIA but for the 2012, the number "6" as the 8th digit in the VIN number is for the GDI engine. I think the number "1" is for the MPI engine but I am not 100% sure on the MPI number. The 2012 GDI has "GDI" on the top of the plastic engine cover when you open the hood. The Gasoline Direct Injected engine has the injectors in the cylinder head with a high pressure fuel pump that sets under the engine cover, and kind of sounds like a diesel when it is at idle. The Multi Port Injection engine does not have a high pressure fuel pump under the engine cover.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Great info. Thanks!

It's an MPI as the 8th digit is a "1" and there is no GDI on the cover. I have always noticed that the injectors are rather "clicky". The dealership service guys tell me that's entirely normal for this engine. The GDI engine must be even more pronounced.

Much obliged for your help and guidance!
 

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2012 Sorento AWD SX
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My seats have gotten stuck too and it seems to be a common problem. Basically you can manhandle it and force it back up. While the seat is down pull up on the release lever at the top of the seat. While the lever is up, wiggle the seatback up and down rapidly and it should unstick. You might have to put some strength into it, but the wiggling is the important part
 

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2012 Kia Sorento
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Hello, my back seat is stuck in the folded down position. The latch is feeling like it can’t go any further. I have two kids so I really need the seat. But I can’t get it up, I’ve put extra weight on it and jiggled it forcefully. Please help!
 

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Sorento EX, 2013, Niro PHEV SX, 2019
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5 or 7 seater? My rear (5 seat) seat catch sticks all the time.
Try this thread
 

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2012 Kia Sorento
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It is a 5 seater. We manhandled it and everything as in that thread. Actually took the whole seat out with no luck yet.
 
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