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2018 SPORTAGE LX AWD
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Discussion Starter #1
I have the AWD LX 2018 and although I think the Kia does a great job in insulating the cabin from exterior noise, better than any vehicle I've driven to date for what it's worth, the Kia produces something of a stethoscope effect for road and tire noise. The noise is noticeable and goes away to blissful nothingness when I drive over recently paved roads but seems amplified for everything else.

So that being the case, is there anything I can do? Seems like padding the interior will make it even more insulated from outside noise, but may not do a thing for tire/road noise.
 

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Sportage LX AWD 2014, Forte LX+ 2014
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543 Posts
It could be the tires as well, I just recently, 2 weeks ago, replaced factory installed Nexen tires with Sumitomo HT and road noise went with the old tires. Still a bit of noise but way less and not annoying either.
I got 2014 'tage thou.
 

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2017 Sportage SX AWD / Mineral silver with beige interior
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830 Posts
I think the pavement is the main factor. I've driven some expensive cars and they all had highway noise to some extent.
The Sportage OEM tires were not the best for road noise. I'll be getting new tires next summer and road noise and tread wear
will be the main thing I'll look at reading reviews, Consumer Reports, etc.
 

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850 Posts
Its the tires. Here's something that's free and might shock you - check your cold tire pressures and set them at the value stated on the frame sticker in the driver's door jamb or in the owner's manual. You must check your tire pressures weekly for deflation and every time after anybody touches the car, like if you take it to a shop for ANY reason. Always check stone cold, first thing in the morning before the sun hits it and adjust as needed by letting air out or pumping it in. You need either a good gauge and a pump or an electric pump with a gauge like the Black & Decker 'Air Station' with the built-in digital gauge. You'll see that you have to add air frequently when the weather is getting colder and actually let air out as it warms up with the change of seasons. But you never change the tire pressure when you check them hot - it goes up when the tires heat up and it goes back down when they cool off - this is why you check them cold.
I don't know what would be different in the insulation/isolation going from a 2011 EX to a 2017 SX but the SX is much quieter. I have not ridden in a late-model KIA that I would call 'noisy' but be aware the tires can be pumped up on a new car to 50 psi instead of 35 psi or whatever is recommended, and shops always over-inflate them.
 

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2017 Kia Sportage SX
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766 Posts
All tires make noise to some degree or another, but there is no substitute for sound deadening materials in the floor to cut it way down.

This is exactly why the older true luxury boats were so quiet, and why they were so heavy.
Pull up the corner of the carpet on any old Cadillac or Lincoln and see the very heavy sound barrier under there.
 

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2017 Kia Sportage
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917 Posts
OEM tires typically are made from a harder rubber compound to increase tire life and mpg. Softer compounds are more expensive. The more rubber you have on the road and the softer the compound, the lower the mpg. You can get a more expensive replacement tire with a softer compound and there will be a slightly lower tire noise. That said, there are certain types of pavements where there can be a big difference in noise with a better tire. People that get wider tires than OEM as replacements, may get a slightly better ride, but road noise can be either higher or lower depending on the roads. Wider tires also get lower mpg and generally worse in ice, snow, and rain (with a couple of exceptions). I haven't replaced my tires on our Sportage yet, but I usually go for tires that have better ride quality and don't care about mpg. On my sports car, I actually changed the tires immediately after I picked it up from the dealer (since I do push it a bit in that car). I used to have a 2014 Mazda 3 with a lot of road noise and I changed the tires after about 5,000 miles. The difference on that car was fairly large. I find that road noise on our local freeways is fairly high because of a lot of concrete/grooved sections. However, that usually goes away on the asphalt surfaced interstate. Right now, I have about 17k miles on my 2017 EX, and I see no reason to change the tires since, in Vegas, the trips are fairly short and the noise is not bad at all....
 

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2018 SPORTAGE LX AWD
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61 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the replies. I don't know what tires my Kia currently has (I'm too lazy to step outside) but the thing about the harder rubber compound on the OE tires makes sense.

Again, the Kia seems to be already very well padded from environmental noise. Suspension noise is good too. But when it comes to tire noise and only tire noise over certain roads, the volume just seems a bit amplified. IN fact, when you watch most test drive videos of the Kia Sportage on Youtube you can hear exactly what it is I'm talking about.

But that said, I think I can live with the noise, and even grow to like it because it makes the driving experience a little more transparent.

Over most roads that are paved well enough, the noise smooths out to nothing, so it's all good anyway.
 

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2017 Kia Sportage SX
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766 Posts
with tire noise there are in my experience 2 different types to it. the is the base road noise which isn't the tire, it is the rough texture to the road, and then there is actual tire specific noise, which can vary greatly, depending on the tire and it's composition / tread compound.

All tires have that baseline rumble to it, that's the road surface interacting with the tire, the tire noise adds onto to that base, sometimes it's severe and can be the noise the tread makes interacting with the road, sometimes almost a howling noise. It's hard to me to explain completely.
 

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2011 Sorento
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7 Posts
Having the same noise issue, I recently replaced my tires with Continental TrueContact Tour. The ride is quieter and softer.
 

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2017 Kia Optima SXL
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I have a 2017 Kia Optima SXL with 32k miles on it. I am getting a lot of tire noise; it may be from one tire, but I am not sure. The cold tire pressure is either at or within one pound of the recommended pressure on the door jam. I am puzzled about this, as this started relatively recently. I do rotate the tires every 6000 miles. I haven't had it into the dealer yet; I was thinking of having a wheel alignment done when I take it in (in addition to rotating the tires again). I would be interested in any ideas or advice you have.
 

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2017 Kia Sportage SX
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766 Posts
what kind of tires came on it? I ask because mine came with the crugen tires, they did last a lot of miles (50k) but got fairly noisy in the second half of their usable life.

You also posted this in the 4G sportage forum, not the optima forum, so it might end up getting moved by a moderator
 

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2017 Kia Sportage SX
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766 Posts
If there truly is a defect in the tire causing noise above and beyond the normal amount of road noise, I don't know that there is any solution other than to change the tires for new ones.
 

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Sportage 2.0crdi aut 4wd -16
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17 Posts
I just took those plastic wheel liners off and sprayed a heavy coat of RAPTOR bed liner there. Easy to do and not costing much. Underneath those liners there are originally very thin coats of paint on metallic parts, so this should prevent rust too.
 

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same here, 2019 EX Sportage 18 inch USA, tire noise is pathetic, even comparing to accord 2003, lexus owners will probably jump out during test drive. kia is killing the brand with sales just at the bottom. when I called them they said that I am the first one to complain about it and sent me a check for 25$. somehow windows also let the noise in , but not always. I replaced windshield recently with FUYAO oem because of a crack, just did a few trips, seems way better, from reflection prospective and noise.
 

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2019 Kia Sportage FE
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52 Posts
"sent me a check for 25$"

Interesting.

I too complained about the crappy OEM tires, Kia sent me a $25 gift card.

Taking a pair of scissors to the card, I returned the pieces along with a terse, uncomplimentary note.
 

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2018 SPORTAGE LX AWD
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61 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Recently there was a down pour of rain which caused mud and some flooding. My tires and wheel wells were covered in mud. What I noticed was a definite dampening of tire noise. Maybe all it takes is to spray the wheel well with some rubber coating or bed liner? Might be worth a try.
 
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