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2018 Kia Sorento SX with Tech/Touring package
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2018 Sorento SX - same issue

Hi all, new to the boards... Joined because I'm having the same sunroof issue.

Purchased my '16 Sorento SX Limited AWD (with Technology package) from a Hyundai dealer. 12K miles on the odo and got them to do $31K + tax. (Not a bad price for a car that was $45K eight months earlier. They all seem to have dropped to the the low to mid '30's here in SoCal, but this one had all the options and the dealer wanted it gone)

The same day I drove it home though, the sunroof jammed. Slow to close, and it eventually would stick and reverse to the open position again, as if it was hitting some obstruction. I had to muscle it shut. Tried doing the sunroof reset procedure as outlined in the manual, but to no avail. Also, now the sunroof timing was off... opsuhing the "slide closed" button no longer stopped at closed, it went from closed to vent open. I had to manually flick the switch to quickly find the "glass closed" position.

Took it to the Kia dealership for warranty service, they said the motor was burning out. Had to wait a week for them to get the replacement. They installed it, and everything was right as rain again... but upon testing it the dealer observed it was slowing down again, and suspected that the guide rails may have become warped. They said they needed authorization from corporate on whether to replace the rails or the whole sunroof assembly. I'm advised not to open the sunroof if I can help it. (I opened the sunshade and the timing was correct again).

Two weeks go by and I'm told to bring the car in again. They keep it for four days (Kia instructed them to send it to an outside vendor). I go and pick it up, the invoice says that nothing has been replaced, the rails have been lubed and that's it. Fine, whatever, it's still under warranty if it messes up again. Except... My sunroof timing is screwed up again! The sunroof won't find it's own closes position, it wants to go from slide closed to vent open without stopping in between. I've tried resetting the sunroof as per the manual several times, no change.

Does anyone know how to correctly reset the sunroof timing with some technique NOT outlined in the manual? Or is it a mechanical issue and I have to take the car back to Kia AGAIN?
My wife's 2018 had the EXACT same issue. Her car would stick and then reverse open. Funny thing, it would close if you were driving, but not sitting still.

I tried the reset and that completely fubar'd it. Pushing it closed would close the sunroof, but then it will tilt open. You have to work it just right to get it to close. Pushing the tilt up button or the tilt down button does nothing. To get the sunshade to close, you have to hold the button closed and it will finally close, but then the roof tilts open with the sunshade closed. I actually managed one time to get it to open the sunroof with the sunshade closed!!!

So, long story, it's going back to the dealer.
 

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2018 Kia Sorento SX with Tech/Touring package
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2 Posts
UPDATE:

Re-read the manual. It was a matter of translating what was written with what I was seeing and hearing. Once I realized that the "click" I thought was my cue to release the button wasn't really it, then I figured out the procedure.

It's now working as it should and my wife is happy!
 

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2016 Kia Sorento SX
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23 Posts
Moonroof now slides without issues

For DIY'ers
First thanks to Jasonamd :liebe011: for posting the TSB. After looking at the potential cause and the behavior of my moonroof I quickly realized there was a lack of lubrication and possibly a piece of debris inside the track. I understand these motorized systems have resistance sensors that after detecting increased friction automatically reverse the current, this prevents someone from getting hurt or the system being damaged beyond repair during opening or closing if you will - this means that it is working as designed.

This is what I did - with a disclaimer that results or issues may be different to mine. If unsure, consult a professional.
1-Set the Moonroof in tilt mode, this can be done with the Moonroof in its default close position - In my case I was able to help it close.
2-Clean and apply a small amount of lithium automotive/marine grease to the tilt joints visible from top of moonroof (outside)
3-While in tilt mode clean the track (hidden between rubber strips)- don't kill me but I used several good quality cotton swabs carefully sliding from the front of the track all the way to the back on each side(see TSB page 4). As I did that it felt like I was pushing a small pebble on the passenger side, could it be the culprit?
4-I then used lithium automotive/marine grease and applied at indicated points that I could have access to without dismantling anything. ***Do not overindulge***
5-Open the moonroof.
6- Apply and spread lithium grease to the track now visible from above - please see the TSB page 4.

Remember to have good illumination.

After that I proceeded to do a half a dozen tests and all operations appeared to return to normal. I will report back if problem reoccur.
:)

Might want to let the people dealing with your car know about this:
TSB 125 PANORAMIC SUNROOF SLOW TO CLOSE AND/OR ABNORMAL NOISE WHEN CLOSING AUGUST 2016
 

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2017 Sorento SXL
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159 Posts
i had kia replace my sunroof tracks under warranty.
 

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2017 Sorento SXL
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159 Posts
Just took mine 2016 sorrento for the 3rd time about the sunroof not closing plus the original owner had issues aswell. They say all they can do it lube like wtf. Fix the issue
where in canada are you? i had this issue. kia replaced the tracks.
 

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2016 Sorento SXL
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49 Posts
I had same issue the dealer did grease the tracks and that working fine but I read something about 2016's having an issues that sometimes need the frame replaced. At some point the dealer called someone and now I'm waiting for appointment to have the frame replaced. I was told it is a 3-4 day deal and it was done by a third party, it was also include a free rental.
 

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2016 Kia Sorento EX+ 3.3 V6
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UPDATE:

Re-read the manual. It was a matter of translating what was written with what I was seeing and hearing. Once I realized that the "click" I thought was my cue to release the button wasn't really it, then I figured out the procedure.

It's now working as it should and my wife is happy!
How'd you make it happen?? I'm in the same situation just got everything opening and closing after being stuck by greasing it up. Then once it was working again I had the brilliant idea to recalibrate the sunroof and now it's in the wacky manual mode where you can't just tap it once to close, it's completely manual and not normal. Like you, some how I had it tilted with sunshade closed. For the life of me can't get it out of this mode. The manual says to recalibrate close the sunroof and sunshade, but that is next to impossible to do in this "mode". Anybody, have any insights I've tried holding the close button for 10-15 seconds till I hear a "click" and everything is open (sunshade and sunroof), but after it won't close the sunshade and sunroof by pressing close for 2 secs like the manual says.
 

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2016 Kia Sorento SX, 2017 Ford Fusion SE 2.0 Ecoboost, 2001 Ford Ranger 4.0, 2000 BMW Z3 2.3
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72 Posts
well the hits keep coming with our car. i think we have had every known issue with this generation of sorento.

now our sunroof refuses to close without help. doesn't look like the TSB will cover us as our vehicle was manufactured in 02/16.

still, other than the DIY posted above, how in the world would i know how to lubricate the sunroof? (never had to in the handful of other vehicles i have owned with them.)

gonna take it to the dealer and see what happens...
 

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2016 Sorento SXL
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1,389 Posts
well the hits keep coming with our car. i think we have had every known issue with this generation of sorento.

now our sunroof refuses to close without help. doesn't look like the TSB will cover us as our vehicle was manufactured in 02/16.
The issues in the TSB may still be relevant to you. What matters is not the TSB, but whether you still have any of the 5/60 warranty left. That's the deciding factor. A TSB isn't a recall.
 

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2016 Kia Sorento SX, 2017 Ford Fusion SE 2.0 Ecoboost, 2001 Ford Ranger 4.0, 2000 BMW Z3 2.3
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72 Posts
I agree that this should be a warranty issue. (We are still covered under the 5yr/60k warranty.) I have just read other members posting that dealers have tried to say that the sunroof just needs to be lubed and the cost will be considered out of pocket maintenance. I am worried they will say the same to me and argue that the TSB is not relevant in my case because I should have the updated parts.

So, update, took it to the dealership. I tested the sunroof before we left. Would not close on its own. Being in my 40s I am very familiar with cars (and kids) acting properly when you are trying to prove they need fixing... and, sure enough, before I drove it into the service bay I tried again and... it closed, slowly, but it closed... numerous times. It had been raining and was worried water might have gotten in and reduced the friction.

On a somewhat related note... Carvana is offering us OVER KBB and NADA clean trade in for our vehicle! Sleeping on it...

The issues in the TSB may still be relevant to you. What matters is not the TSB, but whether you still have any of the 5/60 warranty left. That's the deciding factor. A TSB isn't a recall.
 

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2016 Sorento SXL
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1,389 Posts
Ask your goofy dealer to point where, in ANY maintenance schedule for your vehicle, lubrication of the pano roof by either the dealer or owner is mentioned. If the component fails to function due to unscheduled maintenance, it's on them. They should also look a the parts in question regardless of the build date to confirm that yours are actually correct. You're not that far out on the TSB. They believe it impacts production up through 23 January 2016, but you're right on the hairy edge of that at 2/2016. Given your symptoms match the TSB, all the more reason they should check the parts to confirm.
 

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2016 Kia Sorento SX, 2017 Ford Fusion SE 2.0 Ecoboost, 2001 Ford Ranger 4.0, 2000 BMW Z3 2.3
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ecanderson, i agree that lubricating the tracks should not be expected. however, it appears this may be needed.

so this evening the sunroof wouldn't close again, when it starts to close it moves at a normal speed and then slows, stops, and reverses. when i helped it through the slow spot it picked up speed right before closing. i figured that somehow the rain today must have provided some kind of lubrication to allow it to close... so, the question then became how to lubricate the tracks?

the track for the front two "feet" (for lack of a better term) were clearly visible when it is open and appeared well lubricated. the rear tracks were harder to see but when i located them the section that i could see looked completely dry.

well, i found out why. the rear "feet" slide through a channel that has some exposure to the elements vs the channel for the front feet. there are rubber "gaskets" of sorts that somewhat provide protection but they have to allow the rear arms of the sliding sun roof move through the channel.

so, see pics of the gasket that covers the channel. i used a silicone "plumbing" grease that i had left over; hoping that it will be more resistant to the effects of water. it works great now. the sunroof closes and there is no more slow down.

good grief if we could just make it a few months without another issue popping up...

115143
115144
 

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2016 Sorento SXL
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What I can tell you is that having replaced the two lift arms and having all lubricated, this problem does not tend to return for owners of 2016 models. If it returns for you, I'd still suspect the lift arms.
 

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2016 Kia Sorento EX+ 3.3 V6
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How'd you make it happen?? I'm in the same situation just got everything opening and closing after being stuck by greasing it up. Then once it was working again I had the brilliant idea to recalibrate the sunroof and now it's in the wacky manual mode where you can't just tap it once to close, it's completely manual and not normal. Like you, some how I had it tilted with sunshade closed. For the life of me can't get it out of this mode. The manual says to recalibrate close the sunroof and sunshade, but that is next to impossible to do in this "mode". Anybody, have any insights I've tried holding the close button for 10-15 seconds till I hear a "click" and everything is open (sunshade and sunroof), but after it won't close the sunshade and sunroof by pressing close for 2 secs like the manual says.
So I went to the KIA dealership to see if they could get my sunroof to behave normally. After taking a look at it for a couple hours they come and tell me it's siezed and it will cost me about $12k to fix and I'm 3 weeks out of warranty. They say they have to replace the whole thing. WTF. I want to know who was on the engineer design team for this piece of trash. I mean who builds something you can't repair and easily swap parts on. I don't think I'll ever get another KIA, back to Subaru for me though I'm sure my trade in value just went in the toilet... the dealership gave me the run around in terms of trying to get KIA Canada to step up, kept passing me off to the next person just hoping I'd leave, so unimpressed
 

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2016 Sorento SXL
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There aren't $12K in parts and labor involved (even $CAN) if you were to take a hammer to it, pull the entire thing apart, chuck it, and replace it. "Seized"? Man, the only outfit that treats you folks north of the parallel more rudely than Hyundai Canada is Kia Canada. It's a known problem with a known solution spelled out clearly in their own TSB ... or at least in ours. Am beginning to wonder how much information gets shared. Any other dealers in your area?
 

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2014 Kia Optima SX-T
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$12k sounds a little inflated doesn't it? :oops:
 

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2016 Kia Sorento EX+ 3.3 V6
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That's not even with the tax (see invoice quote)
115426
.. totally insane. I recently came back from a vacation and will be going to another dealership to get a second opinion. Anybody got a recommendation for KIA dealerships in southern Ontario?
 

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2014 Kia Optima SX-T
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Such a shame 3 weeks out of warantee and dealer tries that. Maybe you might have better luck approaching Kia customer service and just explain whats going on? See what they can do for you if anything. Did a little checking and it looks like the entire roof unit costs around $2800 US not sure what that translates to canada. Its a very labor intensive thing but $12k seems rediculously overpriced. Guess they dont want to do it but if they do they want to make a killing. They probably send it to a 3rd party that specializes in that sort of thing.

The entire roof probably isn't bad, it might just need some parts to fix. The parts look available. Someone would just have to take the roof apart and determine whats bad. I kind of doubt dealerships are setup for that but I could be wrong. Maybe thats why they said entire roof I dunno. In the case of say a Ford panoroof they make kits that a consumer can buy to replace the typical broken pieces for around $110. A lot of parts are plastic and would wearout or break They have it kind of down to a science with what breaks on there panoroofs. That same place had repair kits for a lot of other car brands but I checked and they didn't have Kia/Hyundai listed :(

Noticing on that estimate they kept it tidy with no pricing breakdown of parts and labor. Like your idea about getting another quote or two. Maybe you might check with specialists in your area that do that sort of thing for the dealers. They tend to service any brand like mercedes, bmw's, audi's and fords with panoroofs. Might get a little better estimate. Hope you have some luck getting it fixed :)
 

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2020 Sorento SX
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.......... Did a little checking and it looks like the entire roof unit costs around $2800 US not sure what that translates to canada. Its a very labor intensive thing but $12k seems rediculously overpriced...........
First, contact KIA of Canada directly about some goodwill action.If nothing else, they may agree to a partial help.

$12798 CAN = $9606 USD List price ranges from $4000-$4200 USD depending on interior color(?). Looking at the procedure, naturally it requires removing the headliner and all trim pieces attached to the headliner. Apparently because of the size, it needs to be removed through the windshield area, so they are probably assuming that the windshield ($800 USD) might break during this process (cover your ass). So assuming that no other parts are included with the estimate, we are looking at 50 hours labor ($91 per hour USD).

I would ask for a full breakdown of the estimate to justify their numbers. If nothing else, I would ask them to price out to permanently close and disable the sunroof. I would figure about $300 CAN. As a dealership technician, I have done that on a few American cars in my lifetime.
 

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2019 Sorento SXL AWD
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172 Posts
maybe they don't know how to fix it, or just don't want to do it, so they give you a ludicrous price. If you bite, they would be happy to do it for that price.
 
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